Are You in Love Or in Need?

Are You in Love Or in Need?
Fostering Healthy Love in Your Relationship

There’s a difference between being ‘in love’ and being ‘in need.’

We verbally claim our love for our partner and believe to feel this emotion deeply. However, when it comes down to discerning actions, we might be shocked to realize that we only need them.

I needed someone in the past, and truth be told, there was something missing in both me and in my life.

This person came along and was the perfect man to fill the holes in my life that I thought I so desperately needed to fill. Sadly, I confused my neediness for love. In fact, it wasn’t him I needed — it was what I needed from him. I now know what it feels like to feel need instead of love.

I freak out when I hear someone say “I need you.”

On the surface, it’s a harmless statement. But if we truly behold the deeper meaning behind it and contemplate the damage it does, we’d find it has nothing to do with genuine love. I choose to replace it with “I want you,” “I appreciate you,” or simply, “I love you.”

Want or needDo you WANT your partner’s love? Or do you NEED it?

It’s of utmost importance to tell the difference between neediness and love, or else we will pursue a relationship for the wrong reasons, which can end up hurting ourselves and the other person.

Love is not a business contract — it’s a state of being.

Love means enjoying the person and their presence. We let them be, and take into account their own personal needs.

This is how we ‘want’ another person. Their presence should be an additional joy or blessing in our lives. Nevertheless, when their presence becomes a must or an addiction, our love transforms to neediness. When we are in need, we don’t enjoy the person. Rather, we enjoy what we take from them.

Some people are in need, but oblivious to it. If we cast the light on this issue, we can work on eradicating it and consequently, can help our love flourish in a valuable way. Love is never black and white, but being aware of these signs may help you create a healthier and happier partnership in the long run.

1. Focusing on What You’re Receiving

When we constantly take instead of share, we are only focusing on what’s being brought to the table. We might have an unconscious physical, emotional, materialistic, or mental need we expect a partner to honor. Fights ensue when these expectations aren’t met.

Me, me, meDysfunction can occur when we are only focussed on what we are getting from our partner.

What to do: Wanting something means not minding if it’s not there. However, needing something means not being able to perpetuate love without it. We can alter our perspective and focus instead on what we’re sharing — and not on what we’re taking. There will always be an imbalance of give and take in love. So, the best way to stop needing that balance is by actually creating it. We create it by lowering our expectations and removing the focus off of our partner.

2. Blaming Them for Your Misery

In a needy relationship, our misery is blamed on our partner. We link it to not getting what we want. To put it differently, we constantly associate our negative emotions with our partner and claim they inflicted them on us.
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What to do: True love doesn’t know blame. We must understand that our emotions and thoughts are in constant flux — and they’re not necessarily our partner’s fault. Even if it is the case, it is advisable to talk it through calmly and consciously, instead of furiously holding our partner accountable.

3. Being Attached to Their Presence

Getting used to someone is one thing and getting attached to them is another. Habit is normal and common. Nonetheless, attachment is the inability to live without our partner. When we are in need, we don’t tolerate their absence. This is why many couples abundantly suffer after breaking up — because of attachment.

How attached are you?Feeling ‘incomplete’ when you’re without your partner can be a sign of codependency.

What to do: Separation or distance is undoubtedly heart-wrenching, but it shouldn’t be poisonous. It’s advisable to learn how to be on our own even if our partner is absent. We can do so by focusing on ourselves and filling our free time with things we like to do.

4. Sense of Control

A major sign of a needy relationship is spotting signs of control. To pressure the other person into fitting the image we have of them isn’t love at all — that means we are only in love with the person we want them to be.

What to do: We should honor and respect our partner for who they are. We don’t need to change them. By all means, there will be compromises along the way, but both partners consciously agree on them. Whenever we feel the need to change or control, it’s valuable to remember we can’t change people. We can only appreciate them the way they are.

5. Feeling Empty Without Them

There is a thin line between missing our partner and feeling empty without them. To feel empty without another person is similar to being addicted to a drug — we don’t healthily operate when the drug isn’t there. Our happiness and comfort are always dependent on our partner. We wouldn’t happily miss them — we’d miserably miss them.

Practise being individuals togetherPractise seeing yourselves as individuals sharing your journeys together, rather than ‘one’.

What to do: When we truly love someone, we’d still feel complete without them. That said, we are not with them so they can complete us. Rather, we share our completeness together. In order to accomplish this completeness, we can practice seeing ourselves and our partner as individuals rather than one person.

6. Your Happiness Comes First

When we are in need, we continuously need to be happy, and in this state, it is difficult to consider the other person’s happiness too. This can generate selfishness and undesired issues in the relationship.

What to do: To truly love someone is to wish them happiness and opt to be part of making it happen. We must surely think of our happiness as well, but we shouldn’t forget our partner’s. Contemplate equality and reflect on how your partner aspires for happiness as much as you do.

The best method yet to stop us from being in need, is to be in love with ourselves first. When we fill our own gaps, our love for another person will be appropriately reliable. We won’t love them just to fill the missing space in our lives. Rather, we’ll love them for who they are and appreciate what they give themselves, and us. The relationship then becomes a place of sharing.

Thus love is heightened and unconditional.

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Jessica
Jessica
3 days ago

I want my boyfriend and need him also. We are in a long distance relationship and it gets super hard. Makes things a lot different . Ando when together will be different again.I think the key is understanding want and need and actually to me they go hand in hand on occasion.

Keith Karr
Keith Karr
2 years ago

This is a typical modern new age article. It starts off right but then it just becomes weird. The ‘need’ that it’s describing is actually true love (which it is ironically telling you to stay away from) and the love that it’s describing is actually nothing more than ‘kinda sorta liking’ the other person while absolutely being in love with yourself (aka narcissism).

New Chance
New Chance
3 years ago

Love this! I separated after 20 years time 20 years ago. When I left, all I heard from him was, “come back, I need you!” All I could think back then was, boy, it sure would be nice to hear you want me rather than need me. Need is self serving, meaning the relationship is more one sided. Wanting someone takes the relationship into a whole other realm.

David Asiimwe
David Asiimwe
3 years ago

Well said here. You can’t expect to get happiness from your partner but only feel happy when they are. That’s what I call being in love. It all starts with you on the inside and later it shows on the outside and you’re able to share it with the one you love. All needs can never be satisfied but genuine love is fulfilling.

hope
hope
3 years ago

Please how would you know if someone really love you

Jamie
Jamie
3 years ago

Awesome read! <3

Laylalove
Laylalove
3 years ago

Such an eye opener! who knew!??

dmosh
dmosh
3 years ago

My wife wants an open relationship. I need her to NOT do that. I had no idea i wasn’t in a healthy loving relationship with my selfish needs. thank you

osama
osama
3 years ago

great n critical issue to discuss

Nandakumar
Nandakumar
3 years ago

It’s great eye opener, thank you

Lori Smulling
Lori Smulling
4 years ago

I think that modern people have become terrified of being truly close to their lovers. In decades past, nobody would have thought that wishing to be one, feeling empty without their love, being attached or needing somebody was a sign of pathology.

Amy Duncan
Amy Duncan
4 years ago

Neediness stems from childhood trauma of one sort or another. To have genuine relationships, the repressed emotions from childhood need to be addressed and the feelings felt and released…then we can learn to love ourselves. Without this, it’s nearly impossible to follow the guidelines in this article.

Mohini
Mohini
4 years ago

Thank you, all these seems obvious and natural once you have reached that stage of being in love with your own self (although there is no word in westerner languages for that part of “self” called swabhav in Hindi, your eternal original self.

truth
truth
4 years ago

The Soul-Mate Relationship
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Sexual Attraction
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Sex & Sexuality
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nn02M_nVxZg&feature=youtu.be
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Sexual Projection, Addictions & Fears
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eC9XjhgAS4U
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Relationship With a Partner
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hw5z9w0_hr0&feature=youtu.be
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Per Thomsen
Per Thomsen
4 years ago

Wow Definitely some food for thought. It’s such a fine line between love and many other emotions.

http://spottymoz.com

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