5 Behaviors That Reveal Insecurities In Your Relationship

Insecurities are tricky business.

70% of heterosexual relationships fall apart within the first year, and a great majority of this boils down to couples not overcoming insecurities.

There isn’t a person on this planet who feels 100% confident 100% of the time. We like to think we hide it well, but deep down, we are all insecure about something or another. Yet, this lack of confidence can be overcome thanks to the love and words of kindness from our friends, S/Os and our family.

However, prolonged contact with insecurity can cause significant issues in a romantic relationship. When one partner is too clingy—and refuses to work on it—the more confident partner is almost always inevitably pushed away. Unless—of course—both partners are clingy, which results in both of them staying out of fear of losing one another. The first scenario is painful and sad. The second is downright tragic. Insecurities are how abusive relationships are made.

BEHAVIOR 1: INFIDELITY

Let’s just get this one out of the way from the get go.

There are two reasons a couple breaks up after infidelity:

1. The cheater is insecure in themselves and they feel the need to repeatedly cheat on their S/O in order to feel satisfied.
2. The victim is insecure and unwilling to forgive the cheater and work through the pain as a couple.

This reasoning may sound harsh, but the reality is: all cheating stems from a place of insecurity, and every relationship which falls apart as a result fell apart because one or both partners was too insecure to work through it.

Don’t get me wrong. Infidelity hurts. It hurts on the level of losing a child. Yet every act of infidelity has a root. That root may be that your partner is feeling unsatisfied sexually. It may be that they were deeply hurt as a child and are running for easy comfort because truly opening up to you is painful for them. Whatever the reason for cheating, cheating is wrong—but the majority of the time it isn’t purposefully malicious.

When you’ve been cheated on, you are fully justified in being angry. You are fully justified in feeling possessive. However, just because you feel a certain way does not make acting on it the right thing to do. Forgiveness does not just mean swallowing your feelings and forgetting. Forgiveness means, “let’s work through this together. Let’s heal our relationship together.”

To overcome insecurities surrounding infidelity, the pair of you need to be 100% transparent. You need to be willing to accept constructive criticism. You need to be willing to listen to your partner’s side, emotions and thoughts. There is an unimaginable amount of pain on both sides in these cases—even if your partner is a serial cheater.

That said, both partners need to be willing to repair the relationship for mutual healing to occur. If you have talked with your partner—be they the cheater or the victim—and they continually shut down, throw accusations, cast the blame or emotionally abuse you, it may be time to walk away and heal on your own. However, this should only be an option once you have exhausted every single resource to salvage the relationship.

BEHAVIOR 2: ONE-SIDED PURSUIT

Another signal of insecurity in a relationship is a one-sided pursuit. When one partner is constantly showering another in gifts, romantic dates and compliments at first it seems so romantic. However, as the relationship progresses through the natural stages, the infatuation wears off and most couples settle into a comfortable rhythm. This rhythm is still romantic and leaves room for great romantic gestures to be made. However, these are not constant.

If one partner is always offering these gestures, it demonstrates that they might be hiding a fear of their partner leaving. They are attempting to buy their affections, trying to prove that they are worth loving because they keep serving their partner. However, this is just a mask to their inner insecurities.

The problem with this sort of behavior is that the relationship will never reach maturity. The partner constantly showering the other with gifts is actually putting up a barrier which keeps the couple from ever reaching a depth of emotional intimacy. So when something truly turbulent happens in the relationship, the gift giver’s fears are finally realized. Either their partner leaves, or they confess their deep insecurity.

If the latter happens, the pair can begin to build towards establishing a true trust based on love and action. If the former, well… sadly the cycle usually continues from relationship to relationship until the insecure party begins to actively pursue individual healing.

BEHAVIOR 3: MUTUAL IDENTITY

A mutual identity is when two partners inextricably wrap themselves in each other’s lives so you cannot tell one without the other. They attend every single function together, must complete every project together, and it one is out of town the world comes to a crashing halt until they are together again.

This sort of relationship usually stems from each individual being unaware of who they are as a singular person. They do not know who they are, do not know their purpose, or are afraid of one of those two and are running away.

Whatever the reason, these relationships are almost always doomed to fail—or make the couple extremely unhappy—because life requires us to be able to fend for ourselves. Yes, it is healthy to be able to rely on your partner to pick up the slack when you are struggling. Yes, it is healthy to be able to cry on their shoulder when life is just too overwhelming. However, it is never healthy to stop living unless they are there by your side holding your hand through every little thing.

Time apart as partners is good, healthy even. Partners are able to develop their own interests and skills, pursue their dreams. Then when they come back together at the end of the day, they have plenty of interesting developments to discuss.

To overcome insecurities in this requires partners to find out who they are separate from each other. This does not necessarily mean splitting up, but rather pursuing different interests to develop their own skills. Once your individual skills are developed, you will be able to help each other pursue your dreams.

BEHAVIOR 4: CONSTANT INTERROGATION

A small amount of jealousy from time to time is acceptable. However, the jealousy which results in your partner getting angry when you go out, rifling through your internet history, and constantly asking where you’ve been is a little scary. These are the kinds of relationships that result in stalker-like tendencies—the kind that Netflix warns us about.

While most people who struggle with insecurities are no cause for that degree of alarm, someone with a snooping partner needs to have a serious conversation with them. Oftentimes an insecure partner is rifling through your schedule because they are afraid of losing you, and they will do anything to keep you. This fear often stems from a form of childhood neglect.

When your partner is struggling with abandonment issues, you need to be patient, understanding, but firm. Reassure them that you are with them in this present moment. They will want constant affirmation because they do not believe you. Rather than continually saying “I love you,” which they will not truly hear anyway, do your best to bring your partner to the present moment.

Overcoming fear of abandonment requires the partner to return their mind to the present moment. They are drawing on old feelings and mistaking the present for the past. Take your partner through emotional grounding techniques to help them recognize that the present is now and that you are here. In time, they will begin to realize that you are staying and they will begin to calm down. Talk with them about your boundaries, but even more, be willing to serve them by helping them learn to self regulate these fears. If you are in a truly committed relationship, eventually these fears will fade and be replaced by love.

BEHAVIOR 5: CONSTANT APOLOGIES

People who struggle with insecurities have no idea why you are with them. Literally no clue. They are thrilled when they find out that someone is interested in them, but that thrill is quickly replaced by a crippling fear that once their partner truly knows their imperfections, their partner will leave forever. Then begins the game of constantly trying to be enough for you.

Which means, they will always be apologizing.

Why?

insecurities in relationship

Because your insecure partner can never live up to their expectations of perfection.

They will apologize for breathing too loud, for buying you the wrong shampoo, for crying when something truly tragic happens to them. They will apologize for every little thing.

Overcoming insecurities requires much of the same tactics as outlined in the previous section. You need to reassure your partner that you love them and reminding them that they are allowed to have emotions, and allowed to make mistakes. Remind them of the grace they give you when you mess up, and encourage them to extend that same grace to themselves.

FINAL THOUGHTS TO OVERCOME INSECURITIES:

Ultimately, to overcome insecurities in relationships requires a great deal of work and determination. Both parties need to be willing to help one another cope with their own emotional baggage. At the end of the day though, the only person responsible for your own healing is you. Your partner can be there to support you—and you to them—but it takes two to tango, and the two of you need to provide your own emotional support and regulation to be able to help one another.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Heather – The Family

I went on tinder to try to get more dates. This was a couple of years ago. I’d been working too much. I just wanted to have more fun.

I got a message and set up a date with this girl. It’s my 5th date from the site, it’s been fun. But this one girl was like one of those love at first sight moments when we met at a restaurant. I saw Heather and she was perfect. I tried to play it cool but I felt like I could just cut ties with all the girls I’ve dated and just commit to her.

Physically she was everything I could ever ask for and exactly my type. Her personality seemed about a 10/10. About 30 minutes into sitting down, we didn’t even order cause we were just talking. The chemistry was as good as it was with my first love when I was 14. It was perfect, sparks were flying, I thought I was done and ready to commit here.

But then she tells me to forget about ordering food, let’s go somewhere else, and she has this idea. She won’t say much and I like surprises so I didn’t ask much. We jumped in my car and drove to this restaurant about 20 minutes away kind of out-of-town. It was half way up a mountain near a ski resort. I’m familiar with the area so no big deal.

We walk in and her family is celebrating her aunt’s birthday. There was only family and a lot of it, about 40 people. She introduces me and everybody was happy to meet me and really nice. Everybody also knew that she was out on a first date. They were asking her stuff like, “Is this the guy?” “Is this your date?” “Is this the one?” All of the sudden I wasn’t so cool and relaxed. I felt pressure to be on my best behavior. It was high pressure to the 3rd degree. But everybody was nice so that helped. We sat down and I started being questioned by her older sister, her aunt, and another lady that I forget her relation to my date. The mom started kind of defending me and telling them to back off and let me eat. But the interrogating continued. After I don’t know how long they turned to my date and jokingly said, “we approve.” Then I was able to kind of get my bearings for a minute.

I was totally off-balance all night, just tense. I was afraid the back of my shirt would get that a big wet spot cause I felt sweat on my back. So the sister brings her cute little girl and let’s me hold her and she and my date started taking pictures of me holding her, and somebody else’s baby boy as well. I started to feel like the tone of it all was that we were a couple. I kind of felt like I was married to her and these nice people were my in-laws.

After a couple of hours probably closer to 3 hours, everybody was kind of tiring out and everything began to wind down, keep in mind her car is still at the other restaurant down the hill. Then her dad suddenly asks me “jokingly,” what my intentions are with his daughter. Though I can’t remember how he phrased the question. Everybody looked at the table looked at me which is about half the people there.

I guess I was exhausted from all the questioning (I was questioned by multiple people, multiple times) and the pressure of it all cause I kind of lost it. He asked the question, I looked across the table at her, and she told her dad to stop it. Her dad smiles and jokingly says that he’d really like to hear my response, and her uncle (I think) also said he’d like to know (jokingly). I looked at my date and said, “Can I talk to you alone for a minute.” To which her dad laughs loudly and says “I made him nervous.”

So everybody is laughing now and I guess it was a big joke. I stood up in place, kind of, it was one of those long bench seats and I couldn’t push it back cause other people were sitting on it. Then her sister (I think) says, “Oh there are no secrets in this family, speak your mind.” People then laugh again and everybody starts making jokes about not having secrets and this man who married into the family somehow tells me that he remembers being in my place and he says, “Let me give you some advice, the best thing to do right now is speak your mind and be honest.” Then others join in and echo his sentiment, all jokingly I think.

So I looked at my date and she says something like, “You can tell me anything here, we’re all family.” She also I think was joking. But I had started to lose my ability to tell when people were joking and when they were serious. So the dad says, “Wait, I haven’t gotten an answer to my question.” So finally I speak directly to the dad and say, “I’d like to discuss that with her first.” But I REGRETFULLY, laughed as I said it. So her dad says, “I asked you first, I wanna know.” I turn to my date and she says something like, “Go ahead you can tell me, I’m a big girl I can handle it.”

So I said ok, and sat down then took a couple of breaths while her dad kind of quieted everybody down. I started with “I think I made a huge mistake.”

It all spiraled down from there. I said harsh things like that I felt like I was having a bad dream where I was suddenly married. I questioned her intentions in bringing me there. I said stuff like, “What were you thinking?” Yes, I liked you, but I just met you, and right now I know your aunt (I pointed at her sitting next to me) better than I know you.”

I think she was humiliated but I couldn’t stop, the more I spoke the more bad stuff came out, total fucking tail spin. I said I want to find someone special but I don’t want to skip the first 29 dates and skip to date 30 which is what I’d done that night.

Then people started interrupting and chiming in and suggesting that she and I slow down and have a real first date. I wasn’t having it, I was out of control. I said, “No, it’s too late for that, I feel robbed here, I wanted to meet this girl, get to know her, date her, and maybe fall for her, but now it’s like we’re engaged and her whole family is here and there are all these expectations. We skipped the getting to know each other, and dating part so I feel robbed.” Then I said yet another thing I regret. I said “It’s a HUGE RED FLAG (with an emphatic gesture) that I asked for minute alone with you to talk, and this is what I got instead.” I added something like “you’re all great and a great family, but the lack of certain boundaries is a huge red flag for me. I would never let my relationship become family business.”

My date interrupts me at this point and says, “Okay, so let’s talk in private, let’s go outside and talk, I’m sorry I didn’t give you that minute, let’s go outside and talk privately, I’ll give you all night.” She was visibly shaken and I could tell tears were inevitable. I stood up again and realizing that I had insulted all of them I just quietly walked out. I felt really bad cause they were all nice and had nothing but the best intentions for me. They love her, and they were literally telling me that I was good enough which should’ve been a compliment, but I somehow took it the wrong way and spat in their face. I didn’t even drink.

I drove home alone in silence.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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