Who has never felt a “hook” for someone they knew or were in love with? Is keeping this person close our top priority?
Sometimes we can feel something like an addiction, not related to a specific substance or activity, but to a person around us.
What is emotional addiction?
Affective dependence is defined as: “The extreme need for an emotional type that a person feels towards another in their relationship with them.”
This emotional dependence comes from the hand of a feeling of lack of self-identity, with a loss of connection between what you feel, what you need and what you desire, and with a great lack of personal investment.
We will see what are the strongest characteristics and beliefs of an emotionally dependent person.
What characteristics of the person are associated with emotional dependence?
These are mainly the lack of self-esteem (having a negative concept) but also the lack of assertiveness and social skills. expressing different opinions, avoiding conflicts …
A person with low self-esteem doesn’t necessarily end up in emotionally dependent relationships, but it’s something that makes it more likely.
The warning signs of emotional addiction are as follows.
1. Fear of loneliness
This fear this is very common in people who haven’t learned how beneficial it is to be with themselves, spend quality time alone to listen to each other, get to know each other and pamper yourself. We confuse being alone and feeling alone, and it’s not the same!
The thoughts that give us a clue as to whether we are afraid of loneliness would be: “People always leave me”, “I cannot be happy without a partner”, “Singles are failed and unhappy people” …
2. Fear of rupture, rejection, abandonment
This fear is closely linked to the previous one, whereas a breakup or an abandonment of the couple leaves us alone.
When there is a fear of breaking up, we tend to engage in all kinds of behaviors that assure us that it won’t happen.. And this kind of behavior is generally submissive in nature: we forget our limits as a sacrifice in favor of maintaining the relationship.
For example, stopping doing things we like because our partner doesn’t share them, even if it’s perfectly compatible.
In the event that the breakup finally occurs, it will be refused and unsuccessful attempts will be made to reestablish the relationship, so it will also take much longer to recover.
Key thoughts on the fear of breaking up son:
- Demanding ideas like “I should love and love my partner above all” “I have to be the perfect partner”
- Catastrophic ideas “it would be terrible for me to leave, I couldn’t get over it”
- Absolutist ideas “that’s it for me, I’ll never get over it”
- Ideas on the need “I need it like air to breathe”
- Negative anticipations: “what if he left me…? what if you know another one? “
3. Control / area exercised and received / accepted
It may happen that they exist two perfectly complementary roles, the controller and the submissive, and in these cases, relationships are more durable, because their members need each other.
The typical irrational thoughts of the controlling person have to do with this need for control: “It’s horrible when things don’t turn out the way I want them to. “
On the other hand, the typical crazy thoughts of the submissive person they have to do with the need for affection and approval and to perceive as probable the break-up or the abandonment:
Ideas of need: “I need to be with this person”, “I need to be loved and approved by others”, “I need someone stronger to rely on”
Ideas anticipating catastrophes: “if I don’t do what he asks me to do, he will leave me”, “I will be left alone”.
Related article: “The 30 Signs of Psychological Abuse in a Relationship”
4. Jealousy, desire for exclusivity
Jealousy is a manifestation of the desire for exclusivity towards the other and has several phases: anger, rage, humiliation, anxiety, sadness and depression.
It’s okay to be jealous when it’s punctual and you don’t become obsessed with the idea of infidelity. They become problematic as soon as they produce hypervigilance and controlling behaviors that deteriorate the relationship.
Thoughts revolve around the unwarranted suspicion of possible infidelity, attributing much of the other person’s actions to evidence that deceives or will deceive us in the future, such as when he is kind to others or when ‘it’s coming later than expected.
5. Disproportionate priority of the couple
When the couple is ahead, in a long list of vital priorities, our needs, well-being, dignity or personal projects, then we run the risk of getting lost.
We are going to devote a tremendous amount of energy to just one area of our life and there are many!
A common belief when we limit ourselves to ourselves is that “personal interests should be abandoned for those of the couple”.
In a healthy relationship, both parties include added value and bring their own interests, hobbies, projects, which must have equal space. Ideally, there should be a shared space for compatible activities that benefit both and, on the other hand, that personal and indispensable living space.
If you’ve felt identified with any of these thoughts, and more importantly, think it’s an issue you’ve dragged out, maybe it’s time to seek professional advice. Learn to live healthier and freer relationships!