|11-03-2008, 05:26 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2008
Such a thing as not needy enough?
Quick background, had a relationship end 9 months ago or so, one of the root causes being that I was far too needy, lacked real confidence in myself, and didn't live my own life. I focused really heavily on personal development for that first 3-6 months and waxed those problems. Have very strong confidence now, have a great slew of things I like to do on my own, like myself and life a whole lot more in general.
After going through lots of casual dating and living the single life to its fullest, I met a really awesome girl who happens to live quite a ways away. Despite this, somehow we managed to work it out and are in a committed LDR and are doing a really good job of making time to see each other regularly, and keep in contact over phone or email inbetween. Overall, things are going really well, she's awesome, pretty, fun, interesting, all the things you would look for.
Now, this would be the part where people start asking about how to be less needy and manage the situation, but here's the kicker: I haven't been feeling needy AT ALL. It's hard to describe: I like her, I love going to visit her and having her come to visit, but I have zero emotional baggage when she isn't here.
I know this probably seems like a really good thing, but it makes me feel a little guilty. I can tell she misses me a lot and feels down when we can't see each other for a while, but I'm totally fine. I feel like I should miss her and that not having those feelings of mild anxiety, loneliness, etc will a) make her feel like I don't care or b) that I'm actually an unfeeling robot as a bi-product of all the emotionally unattached experience I got from being single.
Keep in mind when we visit I have a great time hanging out with her, we get along great with each other's friends so it's not like I don't value her as a person. If the long distance aspect was not there and hence the expectation that I miss her was gone, this wouldn't be an issue. Thoughts?
|11-03-2008, 05:59 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
I think a relationship that fulfills needs is called a parasite/host relationship. You will see many couples who can mutually benefit off of one another and be relatively stable, but I would argue little growth comes out of such unions.
I believe a true healthy relationship is derived purely from a longing to share. To share life, ideas, love, and energy with one another.
It sounds like you are quite complete in yourself. Now you haven't said much about your significant other, and her level of self sufficiency, but a self sufficient person can get along with a needy person through the infatuation phase quite happily, but in about a year a polarization will occur, and usually result in jealousy and control tactics from the needy party as the infatuation (daily attention) subsides.
Long story short, don't be sorry for who you are and who you have become. Make sure you feel her out before you make any long term commitments. (A rush to make commitments is usually a sign of troubled waters ahead). It can take a year or two to really see the true nature of someone who isn't aligned with truth and love. Usually the more fear and pain someone is feeling, the deeper the skin of the alter ego and the longer it may take to get through.
I don't want to make you feel like you shouldn't trust the girl, just be careful and take your time.
|11-03-2008, 10:05 PM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2008
Is she actually being clingy though? You didn't make it sound like it's a problem or that you're bothered by it. Sounds more like you consider yourself to be the problem. Why do you feel guilty? Do you not value her as much as she values you? Or is it equal and you're just worried you're not communicating it enough with her.
I'm curious what others have to say on this.
|11-04-2008, 01:58 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: San Francisco, CA
I think it is great for you, I wouldn't worry about it. Insecurity about not being insecure seems like it solves your problem right away.
I say just keep on being yourself and having a great time. Take the fact that you don't carry emotional baggage any more as good personal development on your part.
|11-04-2008, 02:35 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2008
I wouldn't really describe it as a problem, as nothing is particularly wrong but it just doesn't feel as right as it should, if that makes any sense. She isn't clingy at all, we each have plenty of freedom to do and hang out with who we please, and she even encourages me to do my own things even when she is out to visit, which is awesome. She isn't jealous at all that I can tell, so she's not a problem at all.
Of course, on the phone she mentions how she misses me and that it is hard on her sometimes to go a while without us seeing each other. I totally understand that sentiment, and don't think it is wrong to have those feelings. The issue is, I DON'T have those same feelings. It's not to say that I don't want to see her or that I don't like spending time with her, because I do. I simply am not really bothered by the distance or going a couple weeks without seeing each other.
That's where the issue of guilt comes in. It might just be a social conditioning thing, but I feel like I'm supposed to miss her and have those same feelings, yet I'm totally fine. I just enjoy her when she is out here and don't get bothered by it when she isn't. Especially seeing how it affects her, it makes me feel like I'm not reciprocating the feelings and hence not caring as much as I should.
I'm actually a little clouded on what the exact problem is. I can't seem to quite put my finger on it, but a couple of issues that seem to ring close are either: a) Does she care significantly more about me than I about her at this stage in the relationship, basically making me a value leech b) By not having those feelings of longing I'm not giving her the positive feelings she deserves (Which brings the question of, are those feelings actually needy and are they even positive?) c) Simply by not caring about the issue how it reflects on my character, regardless of how it affects her
It is sort of a two part issue really, one part being how my feelings influence her, the other being how my feelings reflect on my character. I wish I could be less wordy and vague on the issue but I can't really pin it down myself yet.
|11-04-2008, 05:24 AM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Perth, Australia
Hmm, that's a tricky one. I'd be the first to jump in and say that it's 100% fine to be okay with being apart from someone. If you aren't clingy and needy then that's great.
But the fact that you are worried about not being clingy points to something. There could be a small part of the relationship that isn't as great as you would like it to be, but you can't put your finger on it. It's just tiny though, so it could be invisible, but it's expanded into a general sense of unease, that you may have attached to lack of clingyness.
I have to ask though, where do you see the relationship heading? Have you two got any plans?
|11-05-2008, 12:00 AM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2008
In my previous relationship I was aware of this neediness in my gf and I actually learned to look towards her as a parasite and thought it was the right thing to return the same feelings to her. My god what a mistake that was! She overcame those feelings on her own and left me for another man a few years later. Trust me, whatever feelings of imbalance you are going through with regards to her, they are nothing compared to setting yourself up to be needy just to be on the same level in the relationship.
The way I see it, we are usually not on the exact same wavelength with our partners in relationships. This is not a bad thing as far as I am concerned. It's just a fact of our paths converging and seperating. The trick is to enjoy the unions when they happen and don't panic when they fall away.
Anyways, at the moment this is how I am trying to think about your concerns. Really, I think it sounds like things are pretty ok and no reason to be anxious at all. Enjoy!
|11-05-2008, 12:44 AM||#8 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jun 2008
The absence of an old habit or character defect can create a space in us that feels strange for a while. I am referring to the neediness you said you used to feel but have since worked on and feel you have dealt with. On the one hand it must feel great but there might be a wee bit of you that hasnt adjusted fully to it yet. Thats got to be normal. Keep reminding yourself that you have dealt with this stuff and dont let yourself feel guilty about not having it anymore. Nobody wants a needy partner, not really so you are giving your girlfriend something much better than neediness.I think they call it freedom. She might learn something from you rather than you relearn old patterns from her! Well done on every count and ,my gosh, enjoy it! Missing people is a nonsense really.If we love them they are only ever as far away from us as our hearts if truth be told.I enjoyed reading your post. It is a happy one.Thanks.
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