People with a fearful relationship style want meaningful relationships, but they're afraid of being let down. Their fear makes it difficult and uncomfortable to rely on others.

How a Fearful Relationship Style Develops 

Many psychologists believe that a fearful relationship style develops during childhood when parents are neglectful, abusive, or otherwise unable to care for their children. Childhood trauma is one of the most common reasons for fearful attachment styles. 

One study suggests that a fearful relationship style is closely related to an individual's relationship with their mother. However, attachment styles are complex, and many factors can contribute to someone developing a fearful relationship style. 

Fearful Attachment Styles in Relationships

In a study at the Swinburne University of Technology in Australia, researchers found that individuals with a fearful relationship style are more likely to be anxious and depressed. They may see themselves as damaged, unlovable, or unwanted. 

People with a fearful attachment style tend to strongly desire relationships. They may feel the need to find self-worth from others. When they feel rejected or unworthy, they tend to cling to their partner for approval. However, when they develop a close relationship with another person, they may have difficulty trusting them. 

They are afraid of getting hurt and may always be on the lookout for signs that something is wrong. These tendencies can lead to intimacy problems because they can never be fully present and comfortable in the relationship. 

Relationships may be dramatic, with many highs and lows. The relationship may be hampered by fears of abandonment and withdrawal because they're afraid of getting hurt. Many may also find themselves in abusive or neglectful relationships. 

People who are in a relationship with someone with a fearful attachment style should be compassionate and empathetic to their partner's needs, helping them to feel more comfortable and secure.