Claustrophobia is commonly described as an anxiety disorder, an irrational fear of being trapped or closed in, often leading to a panic attack. Small rooms, tight spaces, and sometimes even tight-necked clothing can make you feel claustrophobic. According to Health Research Funding, 5% of the US population suffers from claustrophobia.

But what does claustrophobia have to do with relationships? 

Understanding relationship claustrophobia

Relationship claustrophobia generally refers to the overwhelming sensation of suffocation or fear of entrapment by your significant other. 

Relationship claustrophobia can make you question your relationship and withdraw from it, creating emotional and physical distance between you and your partner. Not wanting to see them every day, feeling anxious or tied down to them, or wanting constant alone time can be driven by your irrational fear. 

If you want to work through these issues, there are some ways to help you cope.

Indulge in new hobbies or activities

Relationships can become tiresome when you’re stuck in managing your routine and life. It’s not your partner’s job to keep things fun and interesting. It would be best to bring back joy and excitement into your life and relationship. 

Think about the hobbies and activities you enjoyed as a kid, give them another try as an adult, and if your partner wants to join in on the fun, let them. These could be your new bonding activities, helping you stay distracted and become closer to your partner again. 

Take a break from each other
Breaks never hurt anybody unless you’re Rachel from Friends. Find time to indulge in activities you enjoy by yourself. It’s nice to have your partner’s company, but sometimes, alone time can be the refresher you and your mind need. Communicate your feelings to your partner and encourage alone time when things are too stressful or overwhelming.

Limit your expectations

Much like you, your partner and relationship aren’t perfect. Expecting these facets of your life to heal or fix your mental issues is implausible. Understand that you’ll have good and bad days together and apart and learn to embrace them.


Getting professional help

Lastly, relationship claustrophobia can surface due to other underlying mental issues. You may be questioning your relationship and partner due to abandonment issues, childhood trauma, or anxiety. It’s best to get professional help to help you uncover the root cause and feel better.

If you’re looking for a licensed relationship counselor or therapist in Birmingham, Alabama, reach out to Dr. Myers.

Dr. Myers is a licensed therapist who helps his patients be more in touch with their feelings, behaviors, and thinking. His goal is to help people find coping mechanisms that serve them better.

Contact us today for a healthy mind and relationship tomorrow.

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