Ask Dr. Joy: Are you needy?

By WEEK Producer

August 7, 2013 Updated Aug 7, 2013 at 6:33 PM CDT

Asking for support is something healthy…right?

Even though we talk about reaching out to others when we need assistance, are you really acting needy and seen negatively?

Does reaching out imply we are weak, annoying and fragile?

Tonight we will look at the line between healthy reaching out and neediness.

What do we know about neediness and gender:

• Men typically see people who reach out as needy and view it more negatively.

• Men have been raised to be self-sufficient and are expected to find their own solutions.

• Women see reaching out as a means of connection and intimacy.

How does personality relate to neediness?

• There are three types of people: secure, anxious and avoidant.

• Secure people were raised in loving homes with consistent caring. Avoidant people minimize closeness and generally raised in a home where neediness is not tolerated. Anxious people are the ones who had inconsistent parenting and nurturing and they may look to others to fill their needs and appear the most needy.

• Needy people accomplish what they fear the most, pushing people away and wear out friends and partners.

So if you find yourself being needy, what are some things you can do?

• Breathe: When you are anxious, it is important to tell yourself the anxiety will pass and your feelings are normal.

• Realistic: Ask yourself if your feelings are exaggerated. Look for the basic truths and try to find a logical solution without emotion.

• Look for alternatives: Some times people appear needy because they don’t see other pathways or options. Take time and brainstorm potential options.

• Heal thyself: Look for a good therapist or counselor who can assist in helping you become aware of your values, beliefs, needs and assist in problem solving.

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