Thank you for writing. Your letter shows you to be a smart and sensitive guy. Not being able to afford therapy, you have done what you can to find good help. The Internet is certainly a place to start. But it is only a start. Sometimes a little information can turn out to be not very helpful since you don’t have the training to interpret what you are reading or to see alternative explanations for your problem.
I question your self-diagnosis. Before going down the road of attachment disorders, I would want to explore with you whether you are experiencing the normal process of figuring out how to be in relationships. You are only 20. The relationships you’ve had so far were in your adolescence, when people are generally unsure of themselves and awkward and often scared. It is during those first relationships that we all learn how close is too close and how close is close enough. Every relationship goes through a stage of calibrating how to give and receive affection in a way that is comfortable for both people.
Currently, you are in a long distance relationship with unpredictable contact. Of course you are lonely and sometimes insecure. You don’t have enough face time with your partner to do the dance of intimacy that is required for two people to figure out how to be together.
Because your feelings are “normal” doesn’t make them any less painful. Your history of anxiety and depression may make this life stage especially difficult. You do need more support than you currently have.
Here are a couple of articles from PsychCentral’s archives that might be helpful:
I wish you well.