Has your partner ever accused you of being “needy” or “clingy?” Do you feel the need to be with your partner 24/7? Do you feel parts of your life that make you...You...slipping away as you focus more and more time on your partner?
When you start being clingy or needy in a relationship, it’s likely to be only a matter of time before your partner starts to pull away. And the moment you notice your partner withdrawing or losing interest, you become even more needy and attention-seeking.
It’s a vicious circle. And it almost always gets worse with time, unless you identify what’s going on inside of you and address it proactively.
Give yourself a moment and try to figure out whether this kind of behavior is potentially ruining your relationship and if you are smothering your partner with your neediness. Also, keep in mind that being labeled as “needy” by your partner does not necessarily make it true. Only you can decide for yourself, and you are encouraged to seek out local behavioral health specialists for any support you may need in making your decision.
If you do decide that this is an area you wish to address, have confidence that you can change your needy and clingy behaviors. You can wean yourself away from extreme neediness and grow into a more independent and confident individual.
Here are a few ideas to curb your needy and clingy behaviors and boost your self-esteem.
1. Respect our partner’s need for space. Respect your partner the way you want to be respected. If he needs space, respect his wishes and give him his privacy and space. Asking for space or time doesn’t necessarily mean he is pulling away. Everybody needs to recharge from time to time. He may need more or less recharging time than you do, and that’s OK.
2. Maintain your own separate identity. Independent people understand that everybody needs some time of their own. Every couple needs to spend some time away from each other. It is healthy for your relationship and helps you maintain a sense of self and your own identity. Also, when you are able to spend some time apart from each other comfortably, it can be an indication that both of you are secure in the relationship.
3. Don’t be dependent. Don’t depend on your partner to fulfill all of your needs. Do not expect your partner to save you from the big bad world or take care of your feelings. Continue to fight your own battles and live an independent life, taking responsibility to for your own emotions and choices.
4. Continue to enjoy the activities and hobbies that you don’t share with your partner. Know that you and your partner are not going to enjoy all the same activities. Don’t stop nurturing your skills and interests just because your partner doesn’t enjoy the same things.
For a healthy relationship, it is important to support each other’s interests even if you don’t share them. Sign up for a hobby class, pursue a talent or get involved in organizations. Keep doing things that make you feel like.....You.
5. Be socially active. People tend to be clingy when they expect their partner to meet all of their emotional needs. Fill your need for conversation and companionship from more than one source, instead of waiting for your partner to come and rescue you from feeling lonely and bored. Have a well-rounded life. This can also prevent you from feeling pressured to stay in a bad relationship to avoid being alone.
6. Be confident of your value to your partner. If you are possessive, jealous or insecure in your relationship, take a step back. Being insecure, clingy, protective and mistrusting is a big turn off. It can destroy your partner’s attraction, respect, and love for you. People are usually attracted to emotionally strong and healthy people. Become aware of how you enhance your partner’s life to build your confidence.
7. Do not feel the need to be in constant touch all the time. If you are in constant contact with your partner through chatting, emails, texting or Skyping, you will have nothing to talk about when you see each other at the end of the day. Give each other some space and live your own lives. This can make reconnecting even more gratifying.
8. Relax and stop over-analyzing. It’s been half a day since your significant other last texted you. Don’t start panicking, assuming that your partner is pulling away from you or has stopped caring about you. Stop putting so much pressure on yourself and your partner. Over-analysis and assumptions only lead to wasted energy being spent on worrying.
9. Stop begging and bargaining for your partner’s time. Keeping tabs on how often you get to spend time together will create trouble in your relationship. First, figure out whether you are engaging in a meaningful conversation about how to make a little more time with the person you care about or if you are begging, bargaining or emotionally blackmailing your partner into giving it to you.
Focus more on the quality of time you spend together, not the quantity. Analyze the time the two of you spend with each other. What is stopping you from making the most of the time you do have?
10. Have a purpose in life. When you lack purpose in life, you can tend to turn your partner into your life’s purpose. Your life starts revolving around your partner, and this can be a big turn off for some people. They feel burdened to fulfill all your needs. Think about what your purpose is in life – and there can be more than one purpose. Don’t let it be solely about your relationship.
11. Enjoy some alone time. Being in a relationship should not stop you from enjoying your private time. Relish the time and freedom of your own space. Enjoy your own company. Go out for a movie, go to a spa, take a nap, read, or go for a jog or an evening walk. Enjoying your alone time is essential and also healthy in a relationship.
12. Hang out with your friends without your partner. Do you cancel your plans with your friends at the last minute to spend time with your partner? Do not make the mistake of shrinking your life only to include your significant other. This can be a sign of neediness and clingy behavior.
No matter how close you are to each other, spend some time apart. It’s healthy for a relationship. Hangout with your friends without including your significant other. This will help you maintain balance in your life. Take time to nurture and maintain relationships with your friends.
13. Get busy doing things. Improve your skills – take a class that helps you improve the skills you already possess. Love cooking? Enroll in a cooking class. If you are good at picking up languages, learn French or German. Apart from enhancing your skills, learning something new will also boost your self-esteem. It will keep you too occupied to be needy or clingy.
14. Speak up for yourself. Do not give up on your own needs and feelings. Do not compromise your desires and interests just because you have to care for the other person or you are scared to lose her. A healthy relationship has space for the needs and wants of both people involved. Hopefully, your partner is as interested in your needs as you are in theirs.
15. Plan for your future, irrespective of your significant other. Work towards accomplishing your personal and career goals. Spend some time working on short-term and long-term goals that are not dependent on your partner or your relationship.
16. Love yourself. Build strong self-love by taking care of yourself. Be comfortable spending time with yourself and appreciate who you are.
By taking good care of yourself, you will be in a much better place to care your partner too!