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The Psychology of Needy Women

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Needy women can be among the most frustrating aspects of a man’s romantic life. Fortunately, relationship scientists have devised a way to suss out which women are overly needy and which ones have their heads on straight.

Based on the kinds of relationships we have with our parents and our past romantic partners, humans develop a way of relating to significant others that scientists term an “attachment style.” Understanding the psychology of needy women and knowing your woman’s attachment style can reveal a lot about her psychological issues and help you determine whether or not she’s worth dating.

Four types of attachment styles

When it comes to attachment styles, there are two dimensions: fear of being abandoned and avoidance of closeness. A person can be low or high in either of these dimensions, which results in four different attachment styles: assured, needy, distant, and scared. Dating a woman with a needy attachment style can be an emotional nightmare. We’re here to help you avoid dating disaster by giving you tips on the psychology of needy women, how to tell if you’re involved with a needy woman, what’s going on in her head, and how to cope.

Attachment style 1

The assured girlfriend: Low fear of being abandoned + low avoidance of closeness

Ultimately, an assured woman is the one with whom you’ll have the best long-term relationship. This type of woman has a low fear of being abandoned and doesn’t avoid closeness. In other words, she doesn’t worry that you’re going to leave her and she finds it easy to share herself emotionally with people in general because she’s not afraid that others won’t accept her. She’s also comfortable depending on you and, in turn, having you depend on her. When you tell an assured woman that you’re planning a boys’ night out, for example, she tells you to go have fun. She trusts you and knows that you’re coming home to her.

Attachment style 2

The needy girlfriend: High fear of being abandoned + low avoidance of closeness

The needy woman harbors a serious fear that you’ll dump her at a moment’s notice. At first, everything will seem normal. As your relationship progresses, she’ll begin complaining that you’re not close enough as a couple and that she values the relationship more than you do. She’ll be paranoid about any threat and she'll get jealous at the drop of a hat. For example, if you’re checking out the Porsche across the street, she’ll freak, accusing you of ogling other girls. You can save your sanity by paying attention to these early clues and getting out of the relationship. If you’re committed to the relationship, however, the best way to deal with a needy woman is to provide her with assurances of your commitment while establishing boundaries. If you want three nights a week to do your own thing, say so, then stick to the plan even if she grumbles about it. When you do spend time with her, reassure her by giving her your undivided attention.

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Attachment style 3

The distant girlfriend: Low fear of being abandoned + high avoidance of closeness

This woman is self-reliant and indifferent to intimacy. She’s not afraid you’ll desert her because she doesn’t plan on being all that close to you in the first place. A woman with a distant attachment style is a woman you might want to hook up with, but don’t try to get involved with her or you may wind up feeling used. The distant woman has a high opinion of herself and doesn’t care about what others think about her. Respecting you will not be high on her list of priorities. One good sign that a woman has a distant attachment style is that she doesn’t seem to have close friends.

Attachment style 4

The scared girlfriend: High fear of being abandoned + high avoidance of closeness

This woman fears rejection and is also uncomfortable disclosing her thoughts and feelings. Though deep down she wants an emotionally close relationship, she is distrustful of other people and worries she will be hurt if she lets herself trust you. These women tend to be shy, although lurking underneath that bashful exterior is a lot of suspicion that can easily translate into intense jealousy. If you’re dating a woman who fits this attachment profile and you want to keep the relationship going, you should know that it will take a lot of hard work and a long time to really gain her trust. Like the needy girlfriend, you’ll also need to set up boundaries to avoid feeling suffocated by your relationship.

DECODE HER ISSUES

Psychological issues are at the heart of many odd behaviors in relationships, and this is precisely why it is important to understand the psychology of needy women. Once you have a better understanding of the kind of bonds your girlfriend is capable of forming with a partner as a result of her attachment style, you’ll know what’s really driving her behavior. If you realize you’re dating a needy woman, the bad news is that the “problems” in your relationship are more a product of what’s going on in her head than in reality. The good news is that you now have the psychological tools to start dealing with her effectively.