Holding Time for Vacillators and Controllers.

Why Holding is Difficult for Each Love Style

This month we are talking about holding time.

People with different love styles approach holding from very different perspectives.

Holding Time for Vacillators and Controllers.

Both Vacillators and Controllers tend to bury all their tender more vulnerable emotions underneath anger.


Because, childhood experiences of unpredictability and abandonment produced unbearable feelings of fear, anxiety, helplessness and shame.

Maintaining control helps the Vacillator or Controller lower anxiety and stay away from childhood feelings of helplessness and misery.

Control increases predictability.

Predictability lowers anxiety.

Anger is the first quick response to any loss of control.

Anger serves two purposes for Controllers and Vacillators.

First, anger intimidates others promoting compliance and increasing predictability.

Secondly, anger is a powerful and therefore preferable emotion to sadness, insecurity, shame, fear, or any other unpleasant emotion.

Someone said to me recently, “I never realized how much my anger protects me.

When I hold back my anger, I feel all sorts of unpleasant feelings, mostly that I’m bad and can’t do anything right.”

What a great insight.

Anger keeps a lot of what goes on inside out of awareness.

Controllers and Vacillators have difficulty holding others because they don’t like to be around vulnerable emotions.

In fact, vulnerable emotions in others are seen as a display of weakness and may cause vacillators or controllers to become angry.

On some level, it’s a reminder of their own vulnerable childhood feelings.

For the same reason, they may be resistant to holding.

It’s far easier to be angry than vulnerable.

In my experience, both Vacillators and Controllers are some of the most sensitive people under all that crusty anger.

Their sensitivity made their childhood all the more difficult and miserable.

I’m always looking for the tender sensitive person under all that anger.

The need for comfort is enormous but needing and receiving comfort means acknowledging the pain underneath.

That is the challenge.

The reward?

Less anger.

Less stress.

Fewer headaches.

Less chance of heart attacks and strokes.

And the best part?

Your partner can offer you the thing you most needed as a child and rarely or never received:

A listening ear, tender compassion, and arms of solace.

Blessings, Kay