Do You Get Attached Quickly? 6 Helpful Things To Keep In Mind

You've exchanged messages, gone on a few dates, and now you're brainstorming your vows and making a mental map of the seating arrangements for your wedding. While it's great to be optimistic about love, falling for a new boo too quickly might not be love at all — it may just be attachment.


The main difference between the two comes down to how you view the relationship. If your relationship is built on mutual acceptance and admiration, you might be experiencing love. But if you believe you need the relationship to feel secure and satisfied — and you could just as easily fall for someone else, so long as they meet your needs — you might be experiencing attachment.

When you attach to someone too quickly, you start fast-forwarding through the typical relationship timeline, committing to a future together before you've even learned each other's middle names. And though a whirlwind romance may make for a charming rom-com storyline, it might be less pleasant in real life. As senior therapist Sally Baker told Metro, "A whirlwind romance is close to the dynamics of love bombing, which has more sinister motivations." If you're becoming emotionally fused to a new partner, here are a few points to keep in mind.


You might be more attached to the idea of your partner

It can be comforting to feel like you've found "the one" after just a few weeks of dating, but even if you can't spot a single red flag, remember there's still a lot to discover about your new significant other — and it may not be as rosy as you believe.


Women's dating expert Emily Dini created a viral TikTok video listing five ways you may not know your partner as well as you think you do, especially if you get attached quickly. "Until you've seen how he reacts when he's triggered or angry, you don't really know him," she says in the clip. According to Dini, the same goes for seeing how a partner reacts to a boundary you've set, how they behave when feeling insecure, how they respond in stressful situations, and how they treat women and maternal figures in their life. "Anyone can pretend to be pretty much anything for a few weeks or even a few months," Dini explains.

It takes time for people to show their true colors, for better or for worse. Know that the person you're attached to now might not be the person standing beside you in a few months.


Chemistry can cloud your judgment

It can be easy to grow attached to a new love interest when they're super attractive and great in bed to boot. However, that early relationship chemistry might make you cling to your lover a little too soon. In fact, researchers have found that it takes less than a third of a second to determine whether you find a potential suitor attractive. Once you've decided you're smitten, your brain responds by switching off the prefrontal cortex. This part of the brain is responsible for rational thinking and decision-making; without it, you might become attached too quickly — or even to the wrong person.


Sure, it might sound old school, but delaying physical intimacy can be one way to keep your wits about you as you get to know a new partner. And, if you've already gotten frisky, that's okay — but take a moment to pause and check in with yourself. If last weekend's hookup already has you lusting for more, challenge yourself to wait a little longer before scheduling another sleepover. Or, next time you see each other, make something besides sex the focal point. Getting to know each other in other ways will help you decide if you're truly compatible or just captivated by chemistry.

Your attachment might not be about the other person at all

If you're aware that the Overly Attached Girlfriend meme is basically you in a nutshell, first, congrats on owning that, and second, take a step back when you start feeling attached again. Chances are, if becoming bonded quickly is a pattern, there's a deeper issue at play.


One reason you might fast-track emotional attachment is that you believe something vital is missing in your life — and the only way you know how to get it is to get close to a romantic partner. Maybe you're craving validation or acceptance, especially if you've struggled to receive those things from other loved ones in the past. Or, maybe low self-esteem has you believing your worth is defined by who you're dating.

Of course, these issues can be a lot to unpack, especially by yourself. If you fall hard — and fast — every time you date someone new, consider speaking with a therapist who can help you uncover the real driving factors behind your tendencies.

You could be setting yourself up for a one-sided relationship

Relationships require give and take, but when you're head over heels and totally devoted early on, you might end up doing more than your fair share. And, because you're already so attached and dependent on the relationship, you'll continue sacrificing just to keep the romance alive, leading to a dysfunctional, one-sided relationship. "Many people will begin to over-give because they're hoping to get more love, attention, appreciation from the other person," relationship coach Crystal Irom shared with Bustle. "There are ulterior motives to the giving. This is a problem because it can create bitterness and resentment on both sides."


Though it can be scary to give up control, allow yourself to be pursued by your partner sometimes, rather than single-handedly building the relationship yourself. This can also include sharing your needs and expectations so they know how best to show up in the relationship. If you're deeply attached and the other person fails to do their part, it can be painful to realize that the connection wasn't as mutual as you'd hoped. On the other hand, letting your significant other take the reins at times is the only way to develop a healthy attachment based on balanced interdependence.

Rushing attachment may scare off a good potential partner

Knowing what you want and going after it unapologetically is more likely to work in your favor than playing hard to get or hiding your feelings in a relationship. But rushing into serious relationship territory prematurely — before the other person has had a chance to process their own feelings — can be a turn-off for those who prefer to take things slowly. As Ann Marie Sorrell, author of the book "Chronicles of a Serial Dater," told MadameNoire, "For a woman who has done the work, established herself, and is ready to get married and start a family, she may unknowingly or knowingly begin to project not only her thoughts but actions of this desire she has. Even if new bae has similar intentions, it could be too fast for him to already be thrown into this space." Put another way, you might scare off a perfectly good partner by rushing attachment.


Remember, it takes two people to make a relationship work. Even if you're already imagining your significant other's eye and hair color on your future baby, they might not share that vision yet — especially if you just got together. Savor the getting-to-know-each-other phase without getting swept up in future fantasies.

Not all attachment is negative

Getting attached to a significant other too quickly may lead to more relationship problems down the line, but this doesn't mean you should avoid attachment altogether. The key is to distinguish between secure attachment and anxious attachment. People with an anxious attachment style cling to others and become fixated on them. If a relationship fails, they may feel as if their entire world is crashing down and may struggle to cope without their partner's company. This can sometimes lead to serial monogamy, where they become attached quickly to someone new shortly after a breakup.


If this sounds like you, keep in mind that there's a healthier alternative: secure attachment. "Relationships for securely attached adults will still have ups and downs," Relate counselor Holly Roberts explained to Cosmopolitan, "but you'll be more able to withstand any difficulties that might arise. [...] You'll be more able to regulate your emotions, meaning it's a bit easier to handle sadness and upset in a more balanced way." In a secure attachment, you and your significant other complement each other and offer support, but you maintain your personal identity and life outside the relationship, too.

It's okay — and totally natural — to want intimacy and connection. Just remember that healthy attachment doesn't happen overnight. In the meantime, keep building your relationship with yourself, maintain an open mind, and don't look the other way if you notice red flags flying at full speed.