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Being Needy vs. Having Needs in a Relationship

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Being Needy vs. Having Needs in a Relationship

Neediness is the constant desire for validation, time, and attention beyond what should be expected of a normal relationship.

Dealing with a needy person in a relationship can be draining, exhausting and emotionally depleting.  But we all have needs.  Although our society predominately attaches this label more toward women than men, I think both men and women can become overly cautious and insecure about our partner perceiving us as “too needy”.   The line between asking for what you want out of a relationship and being a whiny, co-dependent mess has become hopelessly blurred.

In fear of being labeled “too needy” or “too emotional” we become insecure about any of our needs and we suppress them to avoid these labels at all costs. We subconsciously over compensate in the opposite way, denying most of our needs, in an attempt to project an “easy going” personality in all scenarios.

I consider myself to be a strong independent woman.  However, I also need someone to take care of me.  I know it sounds like an oxymoron.  I can take care of myself—and I can be taken care of.  I’ve come to acknowledge that there is a healthy relationship dance.  This is the ability for me as a woman to hold my own in my life and be open to receiving time, attention, love and affection from my partner.  The bottom line is no one is truly independent, and a relationship involves a degree of interdependence.

Here are some tips:

  1. In relationships we need intimacy, connection, attention, presence, and love.  Choose a partner who is capable of meeting your needs.  You have to be realistic… Ladies, don’t expect the “bad boy”, who’s never been in a monogamous relationship throughout his entire life to all of a sudden be faithful to you.  Same thing can apply for men… Don’t expect the loud, ratchet, hood chic to remember her “inside voice” when the two of you have a disagreement in public.
  2. You both may be in the relationship for the wrong reason. Both you and your partner’s focus should be on giving love, rather than getting love.
  3. Be assertive and upfront about what you want out of the relationship.  Maybe you want something that your partner doesn’t.  Are you looking for a fling, hookup buddy, or a life partner?
  4. Your partner isn’t a mind reader (no seriously, they’re not! lol).  I know there have been times in my relationship wherein I was truly pissed off with something my partner said and he had no clue (I would have arguments with him in my head).  Even though I was thinking he should know.  If you’re feeling uncomfortable, unfulfilled or unhappy in your relationship let your partner know.  Have an open dialogue but don’t come off as confrontational.
  5. You and your partner can be on the same page, but be moving at different speeds.  The key is not to focus on the timeline that may differ between the two of you, but to focus on the fact that you are both on the same page and want the same end goal(s).
  6. There will be times in your relationship when you may feel alone, unloved, unacknowledged, disrespected and sometimes unwanted (…and yes, initially your partner won’t have a clue about it!).  If at anytime you feel that way, it’s never needy to bring it up. Your partner doesn’t have a book on how to love you, it takes a lot of trials and errors for them to know you on a deeper and more personal level.
  7. Be careful of your expectations in your relationship, they can often times become the entry way for major let downs.  Let’s face it men and women DO NOT think alike. For example: your idea of spending quality time may differ completely from your partner.  I’ve learned that I just can’t say, “I would like for us to spend some quality time together.”  I have to spell out what that looks like.
  8. Don’t pretend you don’t have needs, this in turn closes you off to give and receive love.  Having needs for something outside of ourselves is not a weakness.  The goal of all relationships should be interdependency, not codependency, because being in a relationship is a partnership.

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