On the surface, you may get by just fine.
However, inside, you feel you’re hanging on by a thread. You’re pushing your partner away again or creating chaos in your relationship because it feels familiar and comforting and maybe even evokes a sense of connection in your relationship.
When exploring in therapy, you realize this pattern feels familiar, and a memory forms of when you were eight years old and your parents were fighting for the fifth day in a row. You try to distract them by intervening and then eventually retreat to your room. The image you get is you sitting on your bed with your head hanging down. The feelings associated with this scene are sadness and fear.
When you further connect with this part, you understand it formed to preserve a connection with your primary attachment figures by joining in their form of communication and then eventually retreating to protect yourself from feeling rejected by their lack of attention toward you.
You have a lightbulb moment that this pattern is playing out in your adult life, and the good news is that you will have the tools to change it.