my best guess is this:
i've been studying attachment issues, and one of the themes arise out of what is called the 'strange situation' encouter.
it may be more that you, as was i, so distraught to be away, prematurely, from the presence of my mother, that i don't handle new environments initially. it usually takes a lot of self speak to get myself out of panic/anxiety mode.
yea, it appears that for that stage of independence, a whole lot of healthy self integration would have to have taken place in order to feel safe enough.
so for me, the question remains, why did i not get what i needed to ready me for the separation from my primary caregiver? what type of healthy relating did not happen for me, enabling my curiosity to be piqued instead of my sense of abandonment to be stoked?
i think some answers may be found by looking at who and how the primary relationship needs were being filled or not.
the most frustrating thing is to accept that our caregivers may not have been perfect, and made mistakes, and further that we may never know the extent of the damage inflicted in the vacuous parenting style, and that just may be part of our life's work, to cultivate acceptance of that distasteful possibility.
keep the faith,