It happens at the point in the relationship when you have opened almost entirely. This newfound vulnerability is hard to brave. It seems we have natural mechanisms in place to guard us from such levels of vulnerability. As your automatic defense response kicks in, you begin to push away. You give in to the fear – the fear that one day he or she will see through your facade of self-assurance. They will see you at your core: imperfect and desperately hoping you will be loved.

And this is when you will utter the most contrived, deceitful words one could utter: “We need some space.”

And you didn’t come to this conclusion alone. You were sitting on the Stag Bus, feeling pensive, and “Too Close” by Alex Clare came on. The words infiltrated your thoughts. You began to realize it applied perfectly to your situation. Your paranoia of a potential break up increased ten-fold. It was not Alex Clare singing those soul-wrenching words but your significant other.

This was when you suffered a “perceived abandonment.” You were jaded and wanted to take action before Alex Clare’s prophecy could unfold. Next time you see your lover, you slowly veer the conversation to the infamous phrase and break your heart and your lover’s heart.

Taking a break or giving each other space is straight bull. It’s a cowardly move that costs you weeks of slow torture. And after you’ve both endured the pain, you are left with only two possible outcomes: You will either break up or you will go back to your paranoia-stricken, possessive and defensive relationship.

But there is an alternative. When the fear of vulnerability presses in on your will or the diabolical lyrics of “Too Close” haunt your waking dreams, you must resist. You have to do what you are most afraid to do. Don’t just open up. Push your soul up and out of your defenses and bare it all. Tell him or her, all of your insecurities and second guesses. Admit that you are afraid of eventually running out of things to say. Confess that you have an inability to commit for fear of being rejected. Own up to your demons.

After you’ve released all your bottled up fears you’ll soon realize you are not alone. Your partner is afraid you’ll get bored of them and move on. Your partner is afraid of getting “too close” and wearing the relationship down before it’s even begun.

Relief will wash over you. The cursed lyrics will seem far off and drowned out by your newfound hopefulness. Dive into closeness. Bravely bridge the gap and indulge in the intimacy of human connection.

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