Relationships take work. Even the healthiest relationships require constant care and attention as both partners try to find a healthy balance of independence and independence.
Love can easily tip into clinginess. So here are 16 ways to manage your clinginess and give your partner and relationship, space they need to flourish.
Signs You’re Becoming Clingy
If your partner tells you that you’re too clingy, a common response is to deny it and tell yourself you’re a perfectly balanced, well-adapted partner. In fact, you’re perfect.
Once your ego calms down, though, ask yourself why your partner might think that. There are some signs of clinginess to look out for.
Do you spend all of your time together? Do you follow your partner around the house?
When you’re apart, do you obsess over their replies to your texts and messages? Do you assume the worst if they don’t reply immediately? Do you freak out and send messages you later regret?
What about your other relationships? Do you spend time with your friends? Does your partner spend time with their friends?
Answering these questions honestly will help you tell whether or not you are actually a little clingy in your relationship.
How to Not Be Clingy:
Ways to Be Less Clingy in Your Relationship
If your partner asks you for more space or to be less clingy, it can hurt and feel like they’re rejecting you somehow.
First of all, try to see it as an opportunity to improve your relationship instead of a personal attack. A healthy relationship means accounting for what both partners want.
Acknowledging the problem
If you never acknowledge the problem, there’s very little chance of resolving it. Realizing that your partner wants a change means acknowledging there’s work for you to do.
What we want from a relationship changes from person to person. It also helps to acknowledge that what you might think is affectionate. Your partner might find clingy.
If your clinginess is a problem for your partner, it’s a problem for you, and you should treat it accordingly.
Stress, anxiety, and insecurity
Ask yourself what might be the root cause of your clinginess. Fear of abandonment can cause a lack of trust between partners as well as getting too attached to people.
Over-clinginess has a lot to do with trust. If you don’t trust yourself or have very low self-confidence, you might question why your partner would want to be with you.
Tunneling down these negative rabbit holes can easily make you paranoid as you wonder why they’d ever want to be with someone like you.
Trusting in your own self-worth, as well as trusting the fact that you deserve a partner, can be a great way to have a healthy, balanced relationship.
Trust your partner
Trust goes both ways, and it’s super important you trust your partner as much as you can.
Going through their phone or listening to their conversations in an attempt to “get closer” to them is a surefire method to push them away.
It’s easy to act how people expect you to act. If you don’t trust your partner, they may end up giving you a good reason not to.
Open and honest communication builds trusting and healthy relationships. Normally, it’s better to talk over an issue instead of burying it underneath bitterness, lies, and resentment.
If your partner voices a problem with your clinginess, try not to clam up. Instead, give them some space, then ask them what they mean, what they want, and what you can do to help improve the relationship.
Try practicing active listening and taking what they say on board, even if you don’t particularly like it.
Make boundaries (and stick to them)
If you and your partner spend every night of the week together, try spending an evening or two apart. Agree on what’s best and stick to it.
Knowing how to set goals properly gives you a way better chance of actually achieving them. Take a look at SMART goals and try implementing a few in regards to your partner and relationship.
Start a hobby
If you and your partner spend all day every day together, it’s easy for things to start feeling a little close and clingy. Getting out of each other’s hair is a great way to add distance and balance to a relationship.
If you’re stuck for things to do, try joining a gym or a local sports team, take an evening pottery class or dance lessons, learn an instrument or a new language.
Doing an activity independently from your partner is a great way to build independence as well as having something that’s uniquely your own.
Learning to control your mind is another great way to redress the balance in an unhealthy relationship.
If you find yourself constantly returning to your partner for attention, amusement, distraction, or validation, you might want to try improving your relationship with your own mind.
Practicing meditation brings all kinds of physical and psychological benefits. Learning how to calm and quieten the mind is one of the best ways to learn to live with yourself.
There are even specific meditations and mantras out there for improving relationships.
Ways to build self-esteem and self-confidence
Being over-clingy often has to do with having low self-esteem and low self-confidence. If we don’t feel confident in ourselves, we often ask for validation from other people. Often, it’s the person we’re closest to that we put the most pressure on to validate our very existence.
This pressure can strain and stress any relationship, turning one of fun-loving frivolity into a toxic wasteland of arguments, over-dependence, and miscommunication.
Learning to love yourself and boost your confidence can actually help you take the pressure off your partner. Instead of depending on their approval, you can start to impress them with your independence, determination, and strength of will and character.
There are plenty of ways to improve your self-esteem and self-confidence. Some of them have to do with coming to terms with a problematic childhood, while others are more to do with your relationship with your body.
Improving your self-love can be invaluable if you’re trying to become less clingy and improve your relationship.
Give each other space.
If you’re trying to be less clingy, try giving your partner some space. This can mean spending time in different rooms, giving them time alone in the apartment, or letting them go out with their friends on a Friday night.
When we love someone, it can be easy to feel like you want to spend all your time together. This often leads to over-dependence and clinginess.
If one partner is an extrovert while the other is an introvert, things can get particularly imbalanced.
One of you might gain energy by being around the other while the other feels drained if they don’t get some time alone.
If your partner asks you for some time and space alone, don’t automatically think they want to break up with you.
All they might need is some time to charge their emotional batteries. Give them some space, and you’ll enjoy the time together even more.
Spend time with other people
Sometimes couples spend all their time together because they don’t have anyone else to hand out with.
If you’re in a happy relationship, it’s easy to never spend any time with anyone else. When things get rocky, though, things can get so much worse if there’s no one else in your lives.
So, even when everything’s rosy, make sure you cultivate relationships with other people. Try having friends who are just yours and spending time with people who your partner doesn’t know.
Having independence from each other is a great way to help balance a relationship as neither partner feels like they are propping up the other.
Take time and space
If you and your partner are having serious relationship issues because of your clinginess, you might want to think about taking some time apart.
Try going on vacation with a friend or even on your own. Putting distance between you and your partner can help you see where the problems lie.
Taking some time and space can help you see whether it’s your clinginess or something else muddying up the waters of your relationship.
Taking a break can be one of the hardest things to do in a relationship. Still, it can also be one of the most honest ways to figure out whether or not it’s the right relationship.
Sometimes, an argument about being too clingy can actually stem from something deeper. Give yourself, and your relationship, a hand, and take some time and space.
Who knows, you might come back with a fresh perspective and a healthy, balanced, reinvigorated relationship.
Unfettered access to the internet can really mess with people’s minds, especially when it comes to dating, relationships, and balancing our love lives.
If you’re trying to be less clingy in person, try being less clingy online as well. This means you need to stop creeping your partner’s profiles and stalking their ex’s profiles.
In fact, put your phone down entirely. If your overbearing nature is getting in the way of your relationship, think about how you come across to your partner online.
Do you sit there, refreshing the page every few seconds, waiting for a reply to your fifteen messages at 2 o’clock in the morning?
Are you trawling through your partner’s pictures from their partying days ten years ago?
Do you suspiciously go through their contacts, getting more and more paranoid that they’re cheating on you?
Try taking a break from social media for a while, especially where your partner is concerned. Unhealthy online practices can easily tip over into real life, and soon you’ll be creeping them in the real world!
Don’t dwell on the past.
Clinging onto somebody can be a clear sign that you’re unwilling to let go of something. This can be a memory, a decision, or a stage in your life.
Ask yourself if your over-reliance on your partner links to another aspect of your life. If your past is rocky and littered with chaos, perhaps you’re putting a lot of pressure on the present to be perfect.
Having unrealistic expectations of somebody can easily lead to unhealthy relationships as you put them up on a pedestal that no real human could actually achieve. Assuming your partner can fix all your past problems is a good way to mess up the present.
Learning how to deal with your past can be a tough and scary process. There’s lots of help and advice out there, and it can be one of the best ways to improve your relationships today.
Learn how to be alone
Knowing how to be alone healthily and productively is one of the greatest skills you can learn in your life.
Overcoming boredom, feelings of inadequacy, and uncertainty are all things you’re going to have to deal with if you want to learn how to be alone.
Trust me, though, being alright on your own comes across confident and can be super attractive.
Seek professional help
If you’re still struggling with balancing your relationship and your clinginess, you can always talk to a professional.
Psychologists, therapists, and relationship counselors can help people overcome their past, improve their present, and balance their relationship.
Working on yourself is one of the best ways to work on your relationship. Becoming a better, stronger, and healthier individual will undoubtedly improve your relationship and help you become less clingy.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do I stop being so clingy?
Try to work on yourself. Come to terms with your past and who you are today. Improving your self-esteem and confidence are great ways to stop being so clingy.
What’s the main cause of clinginess?
Feelings of inadequacy and lack of confidence are some of the most common causes of over-dependence and clinginess in a relationship.
What does it mean to be too clingy?
When someone is too clingy, they never let their partner out of their sight. They are extremely jealous, paranoid, and suspicious.
If you’re too clingy, you live in fear that the other person will leave you, even if no signs are indicating this might actually happen.