RoE - I don't think we run from healthy relationships. We run from ourselves, and from pain that we expect will come.
Vulnerability is terrifying. Even now, after all these years and all the therapy I've been through, the thought of being completely vulnerable frightens me so much I feel like I can hardly breathe.
A healthy relationship requires openness, honesty and trust. For us, all three of those are near impossible.
The closer you get to someone, the more you care, the more you need that person to return your love and the more that person has the power to hurt you. When you've been used, abused and discarded by someone you trusted, someone who was supposed to be on your side, it's hard to trust someone again. If you never depend on anyone, no one can ever abandon you. The easiest way to avoid being hurt again, is to not trust anyone.
When no one loves you, you can't disappointing anyone. And because we usually believe only the worst about ourselves, the thought of not disappointing someone seems almost foreign.
I know I push people away... first - intimacy/vulnerability is scary, as Lee also explained so well. Second - I always expect people to disappoint/reject/abandon me. So I'm always testing - are you mad? Will you be mad if I do this? Will you leave me if I tell you that? It's like I have to make people constantly prove their loyalty, or else I can't trust them. Does that make sense?
it's still very hard to understand why someone would reject unconditional love, support and understanding.
He probably doesn't feel like he deserves it. When someone else's picture of you differs so fundamentally with yours, it makes you feel like a fake or a fraud, and you spend you days waiting to be caught out. Even though I'm in a happy relationship at the moment, I'm always searching my girlfriend's eyes for a signs that she's finally caught on to me, realised what I looser I am and is preparing to leave me... Some days I want to leave her, just so that I won't have to go through the experience of having her walk away from me...
What made me stop running? Loneliness. The only thing that I fear more than intimacy, is loneliness. It's almost like a phobia for me. Every time I start to run, I realise that the only thing I'll find at the end of that road is more loneliness, so I pick the lesser of the two evils and stop running.