Emotional dependence harms both the dependent person and the person targeted by the relentless demands for attention. The relationship that has this form of dependence as its foundation is bound to be harmful to both parties involved.
What is Emotional Dependence?
Emotional dependence is characterized by excessive attachment to another person. This can be a spouse, a relative or a friend. However, it is more common to see this type of dynamic in love relationships, where more emotions and feelings are invested.
This dependence is more present when there is an unhealthy dynamic, shrouded in possessiveness and jealousy, between two people. The dependent wants to be the center of the other’s world, suffocating him with his demands and needs. The parties involved stop wanting to be together for pleasure and feel obligated to stay in the relationship.
Characteristics of the emotionally dependent person
The dependent requires the other person to devote all of their free time to him alone. Uses emotional manipulation and blackmail to make the other cancel commitments, stop socializing with their friends and avoid spending too much time with the family.
Experiences with other people are considered less important. The dependent individual openly criticizes them in an attempt to devalue them.
The victories gained through mentoring and directing others are also discarded, leading the other person in the relationship to question why they are not good enough for their partner.
In other words, the emotionally dependent individual tries to isolate the spouse so that he can have him all to himself. It is equally common for him to seek reaffirmations of the affective bond, questioning the other about the feelings he has for him and whether he will ever be able to leave him.
The addict is not always fully aware of this behavior. The need to have the partner’s undivided care can be motivated by extreme insecurity or irrational fear of losing a loved one.
However, it is a fact that this type of relationship is not healthy both for those who feel emotional dependence and for the person who is the target of demands for attention. Dependent relationships are based on unhealthy feelings of possession and need, which feed the illusion of the “perfect” relationship.
What causes emotional addiction?
This form of dependence is rooted in a variety of factors, which makes this emotional discomfort complex and difficult to overcome without adequate psychological help. It can originate from the following factors:
Urgency to be loved, recognized and valued
The dependent person tends to have low self-esteem and little self-appreciation. She runs after other individuals to fill the emotional void within her. The other takes responsibility for completing it, and when that doesn’t happen, she uses persuasion to convince him to stay by her side.
Emotional Dependence: Causes, Traumas and Release
Being too insecure, the dependent believes that he will reach the end of his life alone if he does not do everything for the loved one. He lacks confidence in his ability to be interesting or appreciates the way he looks, so he cancels himself out to make the other happy at any cost.
This form of dependence is expressed through blind dedication to the other, as if he needed to be flattered to be convinced to stay in the relationship. In this quest to convince the other person to never leave you, the insecure individual can be emotionally and psychologically abused.
Emotional dependency is seen as a form of love
Some social conventions in Brazil view addiction as an expression of affection and love.
You’ve probably heard someone justify their partner’s excessive jealousy with phrases such as “he/she likes me a lot, that’s all” or even see the control exercised over her freedom as a demonstration of care. Those with these beliefs can find themselves stuck in a toxic relationship more easily.
Another popularly disseminated way of thinking is that those who reach a certain age and are single and without any prospect of marriage are either failures or have a problem that makes them incapable of being loved. So, to live up to expectations, people throw themselves into relationships and become emotionally dependent on their partners.
Lack of affection or appreciation in childhood
The dependent person may have been physically or emotionally abandoned in childhood, or may have had such negative experiences at a younger age that in adulthood they turned into trauma.
To make up for the lack of love, she looks for a partner who can love her without needing to be justified. Blood ties, in theory, are enough reasons to love someone. When that doesn’t happen, the person tries to show himself (and perhaps to someone who didn’t love him as he should) that he is capable of receiving love.
who onlyFrau emotional trauma in childhood or adolescence has a similar thought. Generally, they are people with low self-esteem who accept being “loved” by anyone who shows interest.
They cling to a long-time spouse or friend, making him their only source of support and affection.
How to deal with emotional addiction?
A person who seeks to satisfy his emotional longings on the other rarely succeeds. The search for security and love becomes eternal because no one is able to fill the void in your chest. Still, she believes it’s impossible to live unaccompanied.
In order to get rid of emotional addiction once and for all, it is essential to investigate the origins of this extreme addiction. Is it a bad experience from the past? An affective relationship that didn’t work out? A childhood trauma? Lack of expressions of love from parents and family?
This involves confronting uncomfortable memories and fears. Coping is not done overnight or in a single month of therapy. It is a long process of introspection and building self-love that requires overcoming emotional limitations.
Breaking the link with addiction means finding freedom for the first time. For someone who has never lived without ties, this thought can be intimidating. What can you hold on to so that you don’t feel insecure, unwanted and incapable?
The answer is simple: in yourself. Ending addiction is also transferring the need for attention and affection to yourself. Instead of choosing someone to be your safe haven, you will be their safe haven!
To reach this point, many reflections on weak experiences, emotions and beliefs are necessary. Dependent people take time to find reasons to love themselves, so this process is rarely effective when done alone.
Psychological support is almost always a requirement to raise the self-esteem of emotionally dependent people, in addition to helping them to let go of traumas and memories that are harmful to their mental health.
Vittude can help you break free from emotional dependency
Emotional Dependence: Causes, Traumas and Release
Vittude not only can, but wants to help you in your process of releasing emotional dependency. This long journey consists of overcoming fears and insecurities that are difficult to confront when you have no support, therefore, the guidance of a psychologist is essential.
Vittude, the online therapy platform, has connected more than three million people with mental health professionals. Our goal is to combine technology and mental health to provide quality psychological care that is, above all, accessible to people in search of emotional well-being.
All inquiries take place on the Vittude platform, which was developed to protect your personal information.
Only the patient and the psychologist have access to the appointments and to the data shared during them, so do not hesitate to vent about your insecurities and fears related to affective relationships.
Due to the security offered by the platform, you can talk to your psychologist from any device with internet access. Consultations can be made either by computer, cell phone or tablets.
Organizing your feelings and thoughts can be a daunting task, especially when trying to rebuild self-esteem and self-esteem. So, let Vittude’s registered psychologists, whose psychotherapeutic approaches are diverse, help you get this healing process started!
How to make an appointment?
To make an appointment online, simply access the Vittude website, register on the platform and use one of the search tools available.
Vittude Meet finds psychologists based on personalized information acquired through a brief inquiry. However, it is also possible to find professionals in the website’s search engine.
Then review your schedule to find a day and time to perform online therapy. Compare your availability with that of the psychologist of choice in the professional’s profile, where you will also find a wealth of information about your career in clinical psychology and specializations, and schedule your appointment!
Online therapy allows you to make appointments wherever you are without stress. It is not necessary to move, catch traffic or abruptly interrupt appointments to go to the psychologist’s office. The flexibility of the online service allows consultations at different times, including at night, after hours.