This is a subject I haven't lived with. But Bear is 16 and fast approaching adulthood. I see on my stat counter that often this is a topic that is googled. So I thought I'd dig around a little and see what I can find. What I find is that living with an adult with attachment disorder would be a tough tough life. This first information is from Evergreen Consultants. I bet anything people with adult attachment disorder are diagnosed with personality disorders. It would be tough to tell the difference. I think, as a mom observer, the key is looking at what lies underneath. What started it all? Was there some form of abandonment or severe neglect especially in the first 3 years of life?
"Unresolved childhood attachment issues leave an adult vulnerable to difficulties in forming secure adult relationships. Patterns of attachment continue through the life cycle and across generations. New relations are affected by the expectations developed in past relationships. There is a strong correlation between insecure adult attachment and marital dissatisfaction and negative marital interactions. If an adult does not feel safe with others, he/she will tend to be either rejecting of their partner or overly clingy. Attachment problems are often handed down transgenerationally unless someone breaks the chain. As a parent, an insecurely attached adult may lack the ability to form a strong attachment to their child and provide the necessary attachment cues required for the healthy emotional development of the child thereby predisposing their child to a lifetime of relationship difficulties. Depending on the genetic personality style of the individual and the early life events experienced, insecurely attached adults fall in one of two categories of insecure attachment:
Intense anger and loss
Critical of others
Sensitive to blame
Lack of empathy
Views others as untrustworthy
Views others as undependable
Views self as unlovable or "too good" for others
Relationships feel either threatening to one's sense of control, not worth the effort, or both
Low levels of perceived support
Difficulty getting along with co-workers, often preferring to work alone
Work may provide a good excuse to avoid personal relations
Fear of closeness in relationships
Avoidance of intimacy
Unlikely to idealize the love relationship
Tendency toward Introjective depression (self critical)
Compulsive Care giving
Feel over involved and under appreciated
Rapid relationship breakups
Idealizing of others
Strong desire for partner to reciprocate in relationship
Desire for extensive contact and declarations of affections
Over invests his/her emotions in a relationship
Perceives relationships as imbalanced
Relationship is idealized
Preoccupation with relationship
Dependence on relationship
Heavy reliance on partner
Views partner as desirable but unpredictable (sometimes available, sometimes not)
Perceives others as difficult to understand
Relationship is primary method by which one can experience a sense of security
Unlikely to view others as altruistic
Sensitive to rejection
Discomfort with anger
Views self as unlovable
Tendency toward anaclitic depression (dependent depression) "
Here is a site with an adult attachment disorder support group.
"You say you are struggling; many with depression, anxiety, self mutilation, sadness, a loss of self worth, lonely, and feelings of just not being good enough. So why put hearts on a site where people are suffering and lonely? The hearts are there to remind you that people really do love you and care about you. You are not alone and you really are lovable. Really! I'll say that again in case you missed that. You really are lovable! So when you are feeling lonely, sad, depressed, or thinking you are not worthy, remember the hearts, you are lovable!
Here you will find adults working at overcoming attachment disorder, adults who have overcome attachment disorder, or adults who have relationships with someone who has attachment disorder."
The Institute for Attachment & Child Development has excellent information but their site is copyrighted so here is a link: http://www.instituteforattachment.org/adult_intensives.htm
If you live with someone who has Attachment Disorder as an adult there is hope. I have a dear friend who has a relative who began her healing from RAD in her 60s and is doing very well. ALL things are possible. Never give up hope. Be determined to find the help you and your family need.