Emotional dependence is the term used to describe a person’s reliance on another for emotional support and validation. While it is normal to seek support from others, emotional dependence can have serious consequences when emotional lack is present. Emotional lack occurs when a person is unable to express their emotions or receive the emotional support they need from others. This article will explore the effects of emotional dependence and how to overcome it.
What is emotional dependence?
Emotional dependence is a term used to describe a person’s reliance on another for emotional support and validation. It is a natural human need for emotional connection and support, and it is a healthy way to build relationships with others and develop a sense of belonging. However, when a person becomes overly reliant on another for emotional support and validation, it can lead to negative consequences.
Emotionally dependent people often have low self-esteem and rely on others to make them feel good about themselves. They may feel anxious or depressed when they are not receiving attention or validation from others. Emotional dependence can also lead to a fear of abandonment and a need for constant reassurance from others.
Some common signs of emotional dependence include:
- Feeling anxious or depressed when not receiving attention or validation from others
- Feeling the need to constantly check in with others or seek their approval
- Becoming upset when others do not respond to messages or calls quickly
- Putting others’ needs before your own, even if it is detrimental to your own well-being
- Difficulty making decisions without input or approval from others
While emotional dependence is a normal part of human relationships, it can become problematic when it leads to emotional lack.
Emotional lack occurs when a person is unable to express their emotions or receive the emotional support they need from others. This can be due to a variety of factors, including childhood trauma, social isolation, or mental health issues.
The consequences of emotional lack can be severe, including:
- Depression and anxiety
- Substance abuse
- Eating disorders
- Suicidal ideation
If you are struggling with emotional dependence or emotional lack, it is important to seek help from a mental health professional. They can help you develop healthy coping mechanisms and build strong, supportive relationships.
Where does emotional dependence come from?
Most emotional addicts find the origin of their problems in childhood. These are usually children who have received little attention and affection and/or who have been empowered too early (“leave mom alone, you can see that she is tired”, “do not make noise, your brother sleeps”, etc.).
These people have therefore become accustomed to putting others before themselves and do not dare to place themselves at the center of their own attention.
They think that they will only be loved if they are discreet and live mainly through the eyes of others. Finally, emotional dependents often express real anxiety about disagreement, they find it difficult to refuse to render a service and avoid conflict as much as possible.
Yet their behavior is often at the origin since, against their will, they are in permanent demand for affection and recognition. In the end, emotional dependents do not know what they need and fail to express their desires or anxieties.
Couple and emotional dependence
How to tell the difference between love passion and emotional dependence? It is not always easy to understand where the limits lie. In a couple, the emotional dependent is in permanent waiting, he is never satisfied with what his partner gives him, regardless of the efforts of the latter.
The addict expects to receive as much as he gives, but this need is never satisfied. He may be extremely jealous or ask for special attention from his partner at any time.
It is indeed difficult to pass in the background when one suffers from emotional dependence because each absence of the loved one is experienced as extreme suffering.
Just imagining that your partner can have fun and have fun without him seems insurmountable. In this kind of case, the emotional addict can be unpleasant or even mean, which can confuse his partner or make him flee.
Can we get out of emotional dependence?
Fortunately, it is quite possible to get out of emotional dependence. It should be noted, however, that most of those who are victims are not aware of their condition. It is often during a consultation with a psychologist that they understand their emotional disability.
Emotional addicts usually complain about the poor quality of their social relationships, they have trouble making friends, get along badly with their colleagues, and have difficulty managing their romantic relationships.
These profiles can indeed annoy since they seem to devote themselves to ulterior motives: they expect something in return. They think (more or less unconsciously) that they can only be appreciated if they satisfy the expectations of others and sometimes do “too much”.
How to overcome emotional dependence?
Emotional dependence can be overcome through personal development work and possibly psychotherapy. The main problem of the emotional addict is his lack of self-confidence: he mistakenly thinks that he cannot be loved for what he is and that he must live through the other.
The addict must succeed in integrating the fact that he must first love himself to succeed in living a healthy romantic relationship.
The fear of being alone must be overcome by a few simple exercises such as going to the cinema alone, going to a restaurant, etc. It is by going beyond the limits that he has imposed on himself that the one who suffers from emotional dependence will be able to understand that he can do a number of things without the approval of others.
Sport, artistic expression, or meditation are all activities that can help him to know himself more and therefore, to gain confidence.
Emotional dependence is not irreversible, but to overcome it, it is absolutely necessary to recognize and accept it. An emotional addict who refuses to qualify as such will not be able to live serenely, despite the goodwill of his relatives.
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