I was able to chat with Emily Wilcox about her upcoming book The Commitment Phobe: It’s Not You, It’s Him. Coming out just in time for Valentine’s Day this book examines that particular person that many people have seemed to attract, the commitment phobe. Thank you to Emily Wilcox for answering all of my questions.
Could you tell our readers a little about yourself?
I am a relationship coach who specializes in love addiction and commitment phobia. The truth is, my career path was entirely unexpected. I came from a past filled with abandonment, emotional neglect and sexual abuse. In my teens and twenties, I was a wild child looking for love in all the wrong places. I was into anything that would give me a feeling of love, peace and acceptance. At the time, I truly believed those things were men and sex. I was a master manipulator with a very low sense of self. For most love addicts, self worth is elusive and much easier found in the love we “think” we can get from others!
How would you describe your book The Commitment Phobe: It’s Not You, It’s Him?
The book is a law of attraction for relationships. The first half reveals everything about who the commitment phobe is and how to spot one. The second half is of self discovery- the reasons we attract this mysterious man into our lives. It’s written to evoke transformation in the reader- to dig deep and discover what causes us to tolerate less than we deserve.
Who do you think would benefit the most from your book?
The purpose of the book is to empower and enlighten the reader to help discover what is underneath our extreme attachment to these men who keep you guessing. I looked for this book 16 years ago when I went through a divorce. I kept attracting the same man, same scenario, same outcome. And throughout my research, I found out others had these exact scenarios unfold. It’s uncanny how specific this commitment phobe is in his actions and behaviors.
What do you think is the best advice for those struggling with the idea of a single Valentine’s day?
Where do I start? Firstly, some of the happiest people I know are single. Not to badmouth the sanctity of relationship, but the grass is always greener, no matter what side you’re standing on at times.
The modern ideology of love is compelling. Never have we been so scared at the idea of being alone, suffering and single. Never have we expected more from our intimate relationships and never has we tolerated more emotional abuse in the name of love. Under the weight of so many expectations, the pressures of our culture make it hard to accept ourselves, with or without a man.
There is power in being single and loving yourself. You are not broken. You are not less than. You are worthy of love. Your relationship will come, if that’s what you want. And remember, half of the coupled up people won’t last and then it will be your turn. But the single life is a happy life. Nobody needs a partner. What we need is friends, connection and love. we need to recognize the severe difference between need and want.
I also believe technology is deceiving and we are a society bred on loneliness and we desperately crave connection – as I type this on my phone and you in turn, read it off you’re computer and on we go! When is comes to love, social media can really leave people feeling empty. We begin to unnecessarily compare others’ outsides with our insides. In essence, everything you are thinking is in your head!
Why do you think commitment phobes are drawn to certain people?
The commitment phobe is drawn to the love addict. She is ready, eager and looking for love. Together they create a push/pull phenomenon that makes for an extremely passionate and intense connection. Both the pusher and the puller have the same fears: intimacy and abandonment.
The pusher’s conscious fear is intimacy as this is where he, too, faces possible rejection. In opposition of the puller, the pusher is conscious of this fear because he thinks that intimacy will lead to enmeshment, a feeling of confinement and restriction. It is his subconscious fear of abandonment that leads to his fear of enmeshment and eventual sabotage of the relationship.
The puller is very much aware of her deep feelings of abandonment—meaning she is conscious of this. Her subconscious fear is intimacy, even though she craves this particular thing the most. For the puller, intimacy is what leads to abandonment. When the connection is sparked, the puller goes into protection mode and pulls up a wall to keep safe.
Neither the pusher nor the puller really wants out of this otherwise tumultuous relationship. They are both gaining a great deal from this interaction by re-living old childhood traumas. However, the commitment phobe usually ends up sabotaging the relationship, only to return yet again, to repeat the process.
Could you share a bit about your upcoming Barnes and Noble event?
It’s at the B and N in Burbank on February 6 at 6:30PM. We will be doing a reading from the book and a signing. It is meant to be a fun event- to mix with other women and men who know how to love themselves and are creating happier, healthier relationships. I’m not a serious person, so my hope is it will be enjoyable and we can all have a laugh at my expense! After a series of failed relationships, I ended up writing the very book that I was looking for (and could not find) at Barnes and Noble in 2005. So, this is very full circle for me. Everyone is invited- the more the merrier!
Where can our readers keep up with you and your book online?
The Commitment Phobe https://www.amazon.com/dp/1942549563/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_kfCmEbC2MBB3G