Love isn’t the easiest thing to understand. When do you love someone? When are you in love with them? When are you infatuated or obsessed? There are so many levels to it and healthy relationships are the right balance of all these different elements.
Yes, you absolutely should love and be in love with your partner. You should be a little obsessed and infatuated with them, especially in the beginning. If any of these become too much or blow out of proportion, then you might have a problem.
Many people, especially when you’re really young, find themselves in relationships where they are emotionally dependent on their partner. You need to ask yourself a few questions. Do you or maybe even them find a sense of purpose from them or being with them? Do you rely on them to determine your worth? Do you find who you are, or get your identity from the relationship?
None of these things are love. You shouldn’t rely on your partner for validation. That’s too much pressure for anyone and for a relationship. If you find yourself in a situation wondering whether you’re really in love or emotionally dependent, here are some signs to check against. If you find that you or your partner exhibit these tendencies, you might want to change things or leave that unhealthy relationship. It’s not good for either one of you.
1. You are too jealous or possessive over them and who they are with, making it hard for them to spend time with others.
2. The relationship makes you or your partner antisocial as either one of you is finding yourself isolated from your friends, family and interests.
3. There are trust issues in the relationship. This is always a bad sign when you can trust your partner and you’re constantly living in fear that they don’t love you, have your interests at heart or can be stolen from you.
4. You find yourself changing for them not because you truly believe but you’re heavily influenced by their choices whether this is religious, spiritual, movies, politics, sports – just about anything to please them or make sure you have the same interests.
5. You don’t know what to do with yourself when they aren’t there. You either feel empty, bored or alone in your own presence.
6. You find yourself needing constant reassurance of their love.
7. You always have to cancel or reschedule plans you make with others and will be considered a loner without them, leaving you without a much-needed support system.
8. You have to fish for information and require manipulation to get things out of them.
9. You or your partner likes to have exactly your way or no other way. A controlling partner is a bad enough disaster to live with but if you find that they are unable to change and you still can’t leave them, then there’s an issue.
10. You live off your partner’s validation and have come to value it above your own such that your opinion matters more than what you want.
11. You don’t think you would be able to move on from a breakup or losing your partner in some other way.
12. You or your partner have very high and specific expectations that are hard to meet and make it difficult to compromise.
13. You have to pressure your partner to do or say things that you need or want. Or you feel pressured to do things you do not want to do. Either of these situations should compel you to leave and you might be emotionally dependent if you’re still in a relationship where this happens.
14. There’s a great communication gap in the relationship and you aren’t getting the level of communication you need which gives you anxiety, makes you worry or feel cut off.
15. If you or your partner calls and checks in to the point of stalking because you worry about what they are doing or if they love you, then that’s a huge red flag.
16. Your partner’s approval and affection determine your worth or self-esteem.
17. You focus more on their needs and feelings than yours.
18. You don’t really like their character or personality and might even find yourself needing to change them just to be with them.
19. You care about appearances in front of others than the reality of your relationship.
20. You are unable to realistically assess your relationship and you are living more in the clouds and based on what you want it to be.
Being in love and being needy or dependent on your partner are two completely different scenarios. Be sure to know where your relationship lies. A healthy relationship should involve love, trust and respect in all aspects.
Even in the face of differences and disagreement. However great the relationship might be, you should never forget yourself and your needs.