Needy people have low self-esteem. Often, they are attempting to compensate for the lack of attention experienced in childhood. They will latch on to others to bolster their lack of confidence. They often present as perfectly normal but in certain relationships, such as within families or in a couple, their neediness surfaces and manifests as 'clinginess'.
Have you ever seen a small dog trying to gain the attention of a larger one? The little dog jumps around on his hind legs, licking the other dogs face, while the big dog is turning away, as if saying, ‘Oh please, give me a break…” That’s normal dog behavior. However, when neediness manifests in a human relationship, the ‘big dog’ feels trapped by the clingy behavior of their partner. At first, it’s quite flattering to be the object of adoration, but after a while, it can all become too much.
When one partner willingly hands over their autonomy and power to the other, the relationship becomes unbalanced. Sometimes this type of relationship can work as long as the dominant partner is kind and considerate and loves the other. However, in most cases, the feeling of being trapped with a needy person is a turn-off, and the relationship ends.
Often the needy people don't recognize that they are needy. They may not even show signs of neediness in their next relationship. The dynamics of interaction between couples can vary so much. The chemistry you feel with one person will not be the same with another.
So how do you know if your partner is needy? How can you tell if you are the needy one?
5 Signs of Needy People
1. He wants to be with you all the time. All of the time. In the beginning, when you are both smitten, it’s natural to want to spend lots of time with each other. Well-balanced couples recognize this and discuss whether to let it happen or to take things more slowly.
You may feel that you want to advance in steady stages, but your partner has other ideas. He’s always texting, phoning, sending gifts, knocking on your door, pressuring you to date more frequently. If this is welcome, then fine, but if it feels overwhelming to you, then your partner may be demonstrating the first signs of neediness.
2. She seeks validation constantly. Your partner needs you to agree with her, bolster her confidence, reassure her and make her feel good. In a normal, healthy relationship, each partner is confident in their skin. They don’t need another person to validate them and make them feel important.
Of course, in any long-term relationship, there will be times when supporting your partner is necessary. Everyone feels vulnerable at one point or another. This is a part of life; it’s what you sign up for when committing to a relationship or marriage. However, it shouldn’t be happening at the very beginning of a relationship unless there are particular circumstances.
3. He needs your attention. On him. At all times. This might also manifest as possessiveness. At a party, he insists you stay right by his side, that you only have eyes for him. Everyone likes attention; it’s natural and normal for you to appear ‘coupled’, but 100% of the time is not normal. Someone who needs their position by your side to be reinforced constantly is either excessively needy or overly controlling.
4. She is always asking you what you are thinking/feeling. When your partner seems to be trying to get inside your head, it feels uncomfortable in the extreme. Sometimes we do ask what they are thinking because we want to get their opinion or to find out why they are feeling the way they do. That’s okay, that’s normal, but when it is an ongoing thing, then your partner is behaving in a needy way.
5. He dominates your social media. He responds to every post and update. He sees your online life as his own. He responds to posts that are years old, indicating that he’s working his way through your social media life. He’ll question you about your contacts and friends, asking if you love him more than them. It’s a revealing behavior in this era of digital interaction and shows that your new beau may be a tad on the needy side.
Changing Needy Behavior
If you recognize any of these signs in yourself, then own the behavior and take steps to change it. If you find it impossible to stop checking your boyfriend’s Facebook feed, then stay away from Facebook for a while. If you are doing any of the things described above, it’s time to analyze why you might be needy in your relationship. You may be suffering from anxiety or depression, so get professional help.
Giving your personal power to another person will always affect you negatively. Instead of being in control of how you feel, you are relying on someone else to ‘give’ you those feelings. If all is going well, then it feels good, but neediness is like a black hole – it sucks in good feelings in ever-increasing quantities until nothing can ever satisfy you. You can never feel whole, or happy. One thing you will find – by acting less needy, you will get more of the attention you desire.
Dealing with a Needy Person
Should your new relationship begin to feel uncomfortable due to their neediness, you can try explaining to the other person that their constant attention makes you edgy. Ask them for some space. If you are feeling as though all the energy is being drained out of you by your partner, it’s not a balanced and healthy relationship. Consider why this is happening. Are they affected by a temporarily stressful situation? In which case, once that is dealt with, they should return to normal. If it appears that ‘needful’ is their usual state of being, you should think about whether this is working for you. You can never make them feel good for more than a short while and pretty soon, they’ll require more bolstering, more reassurance and more of your time and attention.
Needy people are not horrible, evil or mentally ill, but they would certainly benefit from counselling or therapy. Simply having someone listen to their fears and anxiety can often settle them and relieve their need for external validation.
A healthy relationship shares the balance of power. It goes one way, then the other. One partner might make the decisions in one area of their lives while the other’s wishes take priority in another. It’s all about give and take. Old fashioned advice, but valid nevertheless.
Is your relationship dogged by neediness? Contact one of our professional psychics for advice.