I admit it… I was once that “clingy person”. After many failed relationships, and ending up in abusive relationships, I realized that it was due in part to my “clingy-ness” that I didn’t get out of those types of relationships and move towards healthier relationships. I have also found myself in relationships with a “clingy person”, and found it difficult to maintain these relationships, finding it difficult to even breath around them!
A relationship where one partner is “clingy,” can really be a huge burden. The one who isn’t clingy will begin to feel like they’re walking around with a large stone around their neck, because it’s a lot to deal with. When one partner refuses to let the other simply “be,” monopolizes their time and even their personal space- it can become a major pain and cause a lot of stress for both parties.
A relationship is only as healthy as you make it, and relationships with people who cling are unhealthy… There aren’t enough boundaries in a relationship like that. Boundaries within a relationship are extremely important, because of the need, even within a relationship, for personal space and individuality.
If you don’t have two whole people in a relationship, then the relationship becomes a “give and take”, the relationship becomes unbalanced, and therefor, unhealthy. If you are the “clingy” person in the relationship, recognize that when your partner distances themselves or tries to get a little space, it’s not you that they are distancing themselves from, it’s your “clingy-ness”.
Try to find ways to cope that do not involve clinging to that person, as clinging will ultimately ruin a relationship. Attending workshops on co-dependance or speaking to a therapist may also help with these issues. Try some new hobbies, and be willing to spend more time away from your partner. Personal growth is essential to relationship growth.
If you are with a person who clings, try to understand that they are not trying to “smother” you or drive you away… Clinging is often a sign of deeper issues of insecurity or a sign of abandonment issues.
Do your best to reassure the person, and stress your need for some space and independance at the same time. Encourage the person to have hobbies or interests of their own, or to seek help with a professional. Do NOT back down on trying to acheive a little space for yourself.
If, after many efforts have been made to try to break the clinging or to have a healthy relationship, there is still the clinging and it hasn’t gotten better, then perhaps the time has come to re-evaluate the relationship and possibly move on. An unhealthy relationship makes for unhealthy individuals.