Is It OK to Be Needy?


The word “needy” has always gotten a bad rap, but is being needy really such a bad thing?

“Give to the needy,” is a familiar phrase during holiday food and toy drives, with needy referring to those less fortunate than ourselves.

“You’re so needy,” is a statement I’ve heard one person tell another in a variety of circumstances:

  • parent to child
  • partner to partner
  • friend to friend
  • employer to employee

What they’re really saying is, “You’re expecting too much from me” which connotes something negative and refers to a relationship that has gone out of balance. In some cases this is true; but not always.

The video clip features Dr. Sue Johnson, a respected psychologist who specializes in couples therapy. With her is a panel of therapists discussing the issue of neediness between partners. It’s only a bit over six minutes, but touches on the important points of healthy relationships that I believe carry over from specifical couples to ALL relationships:

  • Humans are wired for interdependency
  • Dependency needs vary from family to family; therefore, couples must learn to strike a balance
  • The ability to be a part of a team AND an individual, at the same time, take maturity and skill
  • Oftentimes people view needing another as a sign of weakness when in reality having someone we can trust and rely on makes us stronger
  • Codependency is an unhealthy, out of balance state, whereby one person regulates their emotions based on their partner’s behavior

Healthy relationships

As long as our needs don’t cross over the boundaries of the other person, they’re probably within reason. If our expectations allow them to remain an individual and true to themselves, then that relationship stands a good chance of success!   🙂

2 thoughts on “Is It OK to Be Needy?

  1. I think we need to strive to be more vulnerable to those we love and trust rather than be needy, which like you say has negative connotations. X


    • I agree, provided that the ones we love/trust return the same level of caring/respect. I allowed myself to be vulnerable to a partner (and eventually my husband) who had an alcohol addiction. I thought I could “fix” him…a direct result of codependent behavior on my part. The marriage ended in divorce and cost me two decades of my life. Our love & trust are real gifts that should only be given to those who earn it and vice versa! Thanks for your comment! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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