Separation Anxiety in Teenage Relationships
Written by: Ankita Kathad – MA (Psychology)
Last updated date : December 28, 2022
What Is Separation Anxiety?
- Refusing to go away from loved ones. This is due to fear of separation.
- Constantly thinking of what will happen during and after separation
- Preoccupation with thoughts of separation. For instance, the person will think of events like accidents or the kidnapping of loved ones.
- Nightmares of separation.
- Not wanting to be alone at all.
- Complaints of headaches, stomachaches, or other pain as the time of separation nears.
What Leads to Separation Anxiety in Teenage Relationships?
An insecure attachment with parents can also lead to this condition in the teenage years. Lack of warmth or unresponsive parenting can also cause separation fear in teenagers. Additionally, parents who are too caring can make the children dependent on them. This can cause fear of separation in the future. Additionally, some situations or events can lead to separation fear. When a child has gone through a trauma, they may fear going away from loved ones. For instance, if their pet was run over by a car in childhood or if they lost a loved one in a calamity.Sometimes, the teen can be very attached to something and abruptly leave it. This sudden change can also lead to fear of separation.
Teenagers may find it hard to talk about their fears. They may not feel comfortable sharing their feelings because it can make them look ‘uncool’. Moreover, their separation anxiety is often neglected as teenage ‘angst’.
Here’s What Separation Anxiety in a Teenage Relationship May Look LikeIn teenagers, the symptoms can be similar to children. However, this worry can manifest in their other relationships too such as romantic relationships. That is to say that a teenager can get worried at the thought of going away from friends or partners. They may even show this type of anxiety when separated from their parents.
- Teenagers can often refuse school or show avoidant behaviors. They may refuse to attend a school or remain there. They may feel an urge to go back home.
- Teenagers will stay indoors for a very long time and insist that their parents and siblings stay close.
- They will wake up in the night complaining of nightmares.
- They will get sad or depressed if either of the parents leaves. This can even happen when a parent goes to work.
- Teenagers will refuse to attend college trips or go out with friends.
- Teenagers will not let go of their partners quickly. They will feel worried when their partner goes home.
- They will panic if their partner doesn’t pick up their call.
- The thought of their partner going away can make them sick.
- They will keep checking with their partner on calls or after school.
- They will get worried if there is a fight or any mention of the partner leaving.
- Moreover, they will get worried if their partner has other friends.
- They will start panicking if the partner is absent or sick.
Obsessive Teenage Relationships
The obsessed teenager may want to spend maximum time with the one they fear losing. Obsessive teenage relationships have its root in separation anxiety where the teenager cannot bear the thought of losing their loved ones. They feel that if they let their loved ones go away from their sight, they might lose them.
An obsessed teenager may not give freedom to their partner or caregiver to go out of their field of inspection. They may constantly check upon them to make sure that they are with them. Moreover, the teenager may get extremely worried if the loved ones move away.
Obsessive teenage relationships can harm a child’s development in many ways. Obsession on part of the teenagers will irritate their loved ones. Romantic partners of the teenager may feel suffocated. They may want to leave. This will further create stress in the mind of the teenager.
Additionally, teenagers can have problems in relationships as adults. They may not be able to have a stable relationship because they are always fearful of losing their partners. This can make them controlling.
EndnoteSeparation anxiety in teenage relationships can affect a child’s development in many ways. Overdependency can have a spillover effect in adulthood. Teenagers may become clingy and over-dependent on their partners. They have a chance of developing a panic disorder or other anxiety disorders. Seeking an expert’s help can be helpful. Moreover, the teenage years are a time to become independent. These years prepare you for your future.
This condition, if persists, can lead to social anxiety. At Epsychonline some courses help you overcome several mental conditions such as social anxiety. Courses like DBT For Social Anxiety can help you understand the causes of anxiety and the cure for it. There are many articles that give a clear picture of separation anxiety. Do check them out.