Attachment theories + loving relationships: Elizabeth Gillette, LCSW, explains how to best connect

A note from intuitive psychotherapist and author Kara Kihm, the host of the Discovering My Wings Show on the Inkandescent Radio Network — Hello! I invite you to tune in for this week’s episode of Discovering My Wings. As a psychotherapist and Reiki master with a private practice blending therapy and energy work, my passion is helping women empower themselves through the voice of their own intuition. On this show, I interview experts around the world, with the goal of helping you hone that deep inner knowing.

Today’s guest: Elizabeth Gillette, LCSW

Our topic: Attachment theories and loving relationships

About Elizabeth: As an attachment specialist, Elizabeth helps her clients develop secure ways of relating and improving their relationships by breaking old patterns and establishing healthy connections with integrity.

In her book, Attachment Theory Workbook for Couples, Elizabeth teaches her readers to become more supportive partners. She writes: “It’s no secret that even the best relationships need to be nurtured. This couples’ workbook offers a new framework, helping you and your partner pinpoint your individual attachment styles to understand their effects on your relationship dynamics.

  • An explanation of attachment theory—Explore the four attachment styles (anxious, avoidant, disorganized, and secure), and learn how each one forms, their common characteristics, and how to identify your own primary style.
  • Engaging exercises—Thoughtful prompts and activities help you and your partner develop tools to better connect, from quieting your respective inner critics to spontaneously hugging for 20 seconds.
  • Relatable scenarios—See how other couples’ attachment styles play out in their relationships to gain insight into your own situation.

Elizabeth says knows this from personal experience. “Relationships used to be deeply painful and anxiety-provoking for me. I was always willing to sacrifice myself to maintain the connection, especially in partnerships. My lack of boundaries led me to intense interpersonal trauma, the kind that lodges itself in your nervous system and takes intentional work to move on from. I was highly skilled at convincing people to be in a relationship with me, even when they didn’t want to be—because it helped me feel valid and whole. That way of being was exhausting. My body and my nervous system couldn’t take it anymore and after a cancer diagnosis in my early 20s, I knew I had to do something differently. A new relationship (with my now partner of more than 10 years) prompted me to dig into my old patterns and make choices that were truly in alignment with who I wanted to be in the world. I know these patterns inside and out, and now I know how to heal our hearts after so many years of feeling not quite good enough and not quite lovable.” Discover more at

Learn more about Kara and the “Discovering My Wings” show