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Distance in Couple Relationships

Without distance, a relationship becomes a straitjacket. Many fail for this reason. Spoken as a cliché: one makes himself responsible for closeness and pursuit, the other for distance and withdrawal. One is frustrated, the other irritated. To do something on one’s own in a relationship is important, not a sign that something is wrong. It is very important to distinguish this from the type of distance which is sought by people when they have a fear of closeness. The difference can usually be observed when saying goodbye and greeting on return. With a fear of closeness, the goodbye tends to become ‘flight’ and the coming back ‘reservedness’.

Those who change back from distance to the closeness pole of bonding are open, receptive, talk about things, ask and listen. Those who go from the closeness pole to the distance, miss the other, occasionally think about them, look forward to coming back and the following exchange. Bonding, in the form of distance, is the security that the other will remain inwardly present if one pursues that which one desires, alone.

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