I really like your posts, they're very heartfelt.
She said that, when we hold on to someone too tightly, or push them away, we cause suffering. And, ever since she brought up that topic, I have given it a lot of thought.
Id say that's true, but I'd also say that if someone feels uncomfortable being held to tightly, it's almost a given to want to push them away. I'm guilty of the pushing away, my husband is the one who holds to tightly. So, I can completely relate here. He invades my personal space, literally, quite frequently. That makes me uncomfortable and he knows it. I was the kid that would yell "stop touching me!" If my sister sat too close and her leg was touching mine..lol. She would lick my face, out of the blue, because she knew I couldn't stand it. Oh, and because she was 4 1/2 yrs older then me, she would regularly hold me down, just to show who was bigger and stronger.
So, I developed a strong sense of personal space. However, I don't push someone away, unless they repeatedly cross my boundaries (like sit or lay on me without my consent, or constantly touch or grope at me. Etc) or try to show dominace in some way or fashion. Most the time my husband thinks it's funny, as he can be an agitator. Occasionally, I miss read him, push away and hurt his feelings a wee bit. I'm not an overly affectionate person in general. I just wasn't raised that way.
Yet, I know, with equally strong conviction, that, given another chance at a relationship, exactly the same would occur.
Cognitive behavioral therapy may be able to help with this or finding a klingy girlfriend. One who holds tight to you, therefore wouldn't be bothered by being held tight back.
I read what you wrote about space, but I think in a relationship it should be mutual if you invade one another's personal space, if you need time apart (just to be alone or whatever), I think thats fine and healthy Also, of course, to let each other be themselves.
Now, of course this is all on the relative level of the apparent reality. But I know that no matter what happens, I awareness, am not affected in the least, so theres usually a momentary irritation at this point, then it's let go of... It comes, it goes. Painful experiences appear, they disappear... my essential nature is left untouched.
Take what you like and leave the rest.