Love and The Commitment Phobe: Interview with Relationship Expert Emily Wilcox (and Book Giveaway!)

Saturday, February 14, 2015
Valentine's Day can be a romantic celebration for those in a relationship, but what if your man doesn't want to commit? If you're a single woman who can't seem to find The One, we have a special treat for you!

Today we're chatting with relationship expert Emily Wilcox about her latest book, The Commitment Phobe: It's not you…It's him. With humor and candor, this in-depth book finally explains how to spot a Commitment Phobe, what drives him to run away or cheat and how to finally break the cycle of a push/pull relationship and create lasting love.

Read the interview with Emily and enter to win your own copy of The Commitment Phobe in the Rafflecopter form below!

Emily Wilcox is a Relationship Expert and Author. She has contributed her expertise to publications such as FHM, Curve Magazine, The Huffington Post, The Advocate, and was the resident advice columnist for Diva magazine. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.

Find out more about Emily by connecting with her online:

Twitter: @committolove

FaceBook: The Commitment Phobe

-----Interview by Crystal J. Otto

WOW: Such a catchy title and a great book, tell us Emily, what inspired you to write The Commitment Phobe?

Emily: I had a series of unhealthy relationships throughout my life and I was determined to find out why the characteristics were the same in each one. Many years ago in desperation, I walked to my local bookstore to get some answers on why this record kept playing over and over again in my life and I was dissatisfied with what I found. Several years later after my career began as a coach and a columnist, I serendipitously ended up writing the very book I was looking for that day.

WOW: I love that you took your experience and not only wrote down what you learned, but felt confident enough to share it with others! Maybe your experience can help us learn to spot a Commitment Phobe; What are the tell-tale signs?

Emily: In the beginning, the Commitment Phobe usually comes on very strong and charming, making a lot of empty promises. He then pulls away only to come back. He is emotionally unattainable, mysterious, confusing and elusive. He sometimes has one or more back-ups waiting in the wings and doesn’t let go of his exes easily. He is in and out, back and forth and always knows the right thing to say in the beginning. This guy is not necessarily a jerk. He is lost and confused—mostly about who he is and why he is so unhappy. He may enjoy pornography much more than the average guy due to his intimacy issues and he withdraws from sex toward the end of the relationship. More importantly, a woman with a high degree of self-love will not attract a Commitment Phobe into her life. So, in a sense, it is a tricky question. It takes two!

WOW: If only I had met you in the late 90's...sounds like you could have saved me from a practice marriage, but that's another story. Great tips and pointers Emily! 

In your book you talk about Fear vs. Love. What is the difference between a Love Addict and a Commitment Phobe? And can you give us an example or two of how fear affects their relationship?

Emily: Great question. Both the Commitment Phobe and the Love Addict have the same fears, but on the opposing spectrums. The Commitment Phobe consciously fears intimacy and subconsciously fears abandonment. The Love Addict is the opposite. In that regard, they are truly connected by their innermost fears and are drawn to each other like magnets. The Commitment Phobe abandons the Love Addict just as she fears…only to come back and repeat the cycle all over again until something drastic changes the course.

The fears they mutually have create insecurity, jealousy, manipulation and immense passion. One of them is pushing while the other is pulling. When the two briefly meet eye to eye, it feels unbelievably good. The highs are high and the lows are low!

WOW: Emily, you seriously described my entire first marriage in a matter of two paragraphs; you are definitely an expert!

Can a Commitment Phobe ever become a man in a committed, monogamous relationship--a Mr. Right? And if so, what are some things ladies can do to help him create lasting change?

Emily: This is the million-dollar question. The short answer is yes, as we are all capable of change. But like any change, acknowledging the problem is pertinent. The Commitment Phobe must first admit he has issues. The Love Addict must also see her part in it. The two can come together and help each other heal their past issues (typically both around abandonment), but they should only be responsible for cleaning up their own side of the street, not the other persons. A therapist can be very helpful in this situation. If you are in a relationship with a Commitment Phobe, the best thing you can do is practice self-love and stand up for what you deserve. Sometimes walking away will cause a Commitment Phobe to wake up and stop taking the relationship for granted. His sense of loss will be triggered. In that sense, it requires more of a cognitive approach.

WOW: Admitting our issues can be tough for any of us; you bring up some great points!

Your book is filled with fantastic relationship advice, as well as real life stories and experiences. How did you conduct the research and connect with the contributors in your book?

Emily: My clients and friends are the contributors for the end-of-chapter stories in my book. They are brave and strong women whom I have an immense amount of respect. Most of my research comes from my background in psychology, studying, reading a lot and of course, my own relationships. I was always fascinated with partnership and how and why we are magnetically drawn to the people in our lives. I have spent the majority of my life in very passionate relationships. It hit me one day that I had spent a couple of decades studying closely the various men in my life and I literally thought, “I have nothing to show for anything! I have spent my whole life analyzing and studying men! What a waste of time!” And that’s when my career was born.

When I started working with clients on topics like love addiction, codependency and commitment phobia, I noticed an underlying theme with every single relationship that I came across and heard about. That’s when I realized there was a real equation behind this. These two types of people who keep attracting each other is not accidental! It was a real awakening and that’s when I sat down to write The Commitment Phobe.

WOW: This brings me to the next question, and brings me back to the song lyrics "i bet you think this song is about you..." but really, do these Commitment Phobes recognize they are Commitment Phobes and how can we as friends help them either recognize or get past the phobia?

Emily: There are two main types of commitment phobes. One is very aware and conscious that he is not interested in committing and will often be very up front about it. These types have better access to transformation because they have introspection and are not living in denial. The other type is unaware, or unconscious, that he pushes intimacy and love away. He is the hardest to deal with because he is not interested in confronting his issues. This type is the one who will blame everyone else for his problems and accept little responsibility for his behaviors.

Getting the unconscious Commitment Phobe to recognize his problems is difficult. I mean, who really wants their issues pointed out to them? Who wants to be told they are “wrong”? It takes a lot of courage to look within and admit we are flawed. By the mere fact we are alive, we are flawed. Our childhood traumas, whether large or small, real or imagined, will label us with the stamp of imperfection. Spiritually, we are always in tact. And that is what can help us master the path. We can help a Commitment Phobe by helping ourselves…by being a living, breathing example of self-love and self respect. We can only change others by changing ourselves. And when approaching the topic, we can learn to be kind and caring without being a doormat.

WOW: I wonder how many Commitment Phobes will walk right past your book on the shelf at the store not realizing it's all about them? Very interesting.

Speaking of getting books on shelves, what advice can you give to authors looking to promote their nonfiction books?

Emily: Hire a great PR team! But if you can’t do that, tweet! A lot! Social media is not my strong suit, but I notice sales go up when I send out a quick tweet. There is a new generation out there who are proficient in social networking and I would seek the advice of one of them because it is a necessity for promoting. Promoting your own work and talking about how great your book is can be very difficult. That’s why a good publicist can work wonders and I am lucky to have the best. The hardest thing to do is promote your own non-fiction book because often times, people can see it as narcissistic. My book has information and answers that will help women and I have seen lives change because of it. But if I promote that, then I am being self-serving. When the truth is that I went through the deepest depths of despair and pain in order to have the information to write this book. I went there so that the reader wouldn’t have to. You don’t attain true wisdom by hanging out under rainbows.

Writers are often introverts by nature and introverts always have a story to tell. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable to your readers. The only way we can relate to them is by sharing our own damaged past because no one escapes this planet without one!

The Commitment Phobe: It's not you…It's him

In this game-changing book for female readers everywhere, Relationship Expert Emily Wilcox, reveals the shocking truth behind men who can’t commit and the perils of a push/pull relationship. With a new take on old relationship drama, The Commitment Phobe takes you on a journey through love, loss, heartache and transformation.

He was your knight in shining armor until your castle came crashing down. What ever happened to the man from the beginning? What went wrong? Did he ever love me? Is he coming back?

Startlingly real and wickedly funny, Wilcox goes where no self-help book has gone before. Her cut-to-the chase approach takes readers on a seamless journey through real life personal stories, commitment phobic types, cheating dilemmas and getting him to finally commit!

With humor and candor, this in-depth book finally explains how to spot a Commitment Phobe, what drives him to run away and how to finally break the cycle of a push/pull relationship and create lasting love. The Commitment Phobe is a Law of Attraction for relationships and a must-have for any woman who is recovering from heartbreak or looking for The One.

Whether single, dating, in a relationship or unlucky in love, there is an answer in The Commitment Phobe for every woman!

Author of International Best Seller of Creative Visualization, Shakti Gawain, says, “Emily has incredible insight. She is a true asset to the world of relationship. I have no doubt that Emily is here to help heal those whose lives she touches.”

“Emily Wilcox offers real hope and healing for women who want to be in a relationship but keep attracting men who won’t commit. A worthy read!” adds MJ Ryan, Bestselling author of Attitudes of Gratitude and The Power of Patience.

When it comes to relationships, The Commitment Phobe will change the relationship game once and for all.

Paperback: 278 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 23, 2014)
ISBN-10: 1468184512
ISBN-13: 978-1468184518

The Commitment Phobe is available for purchase at Amazon.


Enter to win a print copy of The Commitment Phobe by filling out the Rafflecopter form below! This giveaway contest ends February 21 at 12am EST. We will randomly select a winner the same day and follow up via email. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Crystal is a church musician, business owner, active journaler, writer and blogger as well as a dairy farmer. She lives in Reedsville, Wisconsin with her husband, three young children (Carmen 7, Andre 6, Breccan 16 months), two dogs, two rabbits, four little piggies, and over 200 Holsteins. The family is expecting a new addition any day now as they eagerly await the birth of another daughter, Delphine Elizabeth. You can find Crystal blogging and reviewing books and all sorts of other stuff at:


Angela Mackintosh said...

Fantastic interview, ladies! I find this very interesting. I actually think I was a commitment phobe when I was younger. I don't know if that's common in women or if it's mostly men. I had some abandonment issues, and I know that can go both ways with the Love Addict and the Commitment Phobe, but I was the one that didn't want to get married, so I'm guessing I was the phobe? LOL. I think I need to read your book, Emily!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this fantastic giveaway.

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