Looking for signs of clingy boyfriend, are we? Well, see if you can relate to these behavioral traits. You hyperventilate if your partner doesn’t answer your text within five minutes. You are always worrying about their safety. You hate it if they are out with their friends. Chances are you are having constant fights with them because they feel you are fastening them with a shackle. And you are still wondering, “Am I a clingy boyfriend?”
It’s a good thing that you are here because we will help you identify every action that says you are being an overbearing boyfriend. We have with us today communication and relationship coach Swaty Prakash who has a decade-long experience in training individuals of varied age groups to deal with their emotional health through powerful techniques of communication and self-help.
What does clingy boyfriend mean?
If you are trying to figure out the clingy meaning in a relationship, remember there is a fine balance between being emotionally connected with someone and being clingy. It’s not an easy task to understand the psychology of clingy boyfriend. One thing you need to comprehend is that it is not about what you do, it is about how you do it. Attitude is everything. It is normal to want to spend time with your loved ones. It is alright to be curious about their lives. It is granted that you are concerned about their safety and well-being. But the problem arises when it encroaches on their personal space, making your lover cringe.
Swaty helps us to clarify the clingy meaning in relationship and decode the psychology of a clingy boyfriend at the same time. She says, “There is a thin line between being loving and caring for your partner and stifling them with your love. It is like you gag someone while constantly asking them if they are ok. Most of the clingy partners exhibit an anxious attachment style and have some common traits.
“For instance, they want to be the priority in their partner’s life all the time. They want their lives to have them as the pivot. They always feel insecure about their partners, not just from the people who belong to the gender their partner is attracted to, but even their partner’s best friends and other people in their close circle. In fact, they avoid having a social life that doesn’t include their partner. And if they at all have to, they feel extremely guilty about it.
“When your boyfriend is clingy, they would demand constant words of affirmations and validation of their love. They would keep asking the partner in various ways if they still love them as they did earlier. Another thing is quite obvious when your boyfriend is clingy: they do not shy away from PDA. Sometimes, the urge to show the world that you belong to them is so strong that it can be extremely overwhelming in their physical expression.”
Related Reading: Obsessive Love And Clingy Affairs – Early Signs And Dealing With It
10 signs that you are a clingy boyfriend
Being clingy in a relationship, especially at the beginning, is normal and sometimes unavoidable. Love is simple but relationships are complicated, and each relationship has an adjustment time. Ask someone, “Could you tell if your boyfriend is clingy?” and they will give you a detailed account of the annoying behaviors of an overbearing boyfriend. But it is important for both the partners to differentiate between being emotionally needy and overly possessive.
According to Swaty, “It is important to understand the reasons that a guy is showing signs of clingy behavior. It could be some deep-rooted childhood emotion or because of his past experiences. Often, if the problem is addressed and not the symptoms, it is known to have improved and strengthened the relationship. Clinginess stems from fear, anxiety, insecurity, or trauma and it is necessary to dig deeper and know what has led to this.”
Do you feel that you are exhibiting the common signs of clingy partner? For your peace of mind and the benefit of your relationship, we have identified the top 10 tell-tale signs of a clingy boyfriend. Go over them once, and see how many you can relate to.
1. You don’t understand the meaning of space
One of the most typical examples of a clingy boyfriend is that he doesn’t want to accept the fact that his partner has a life of their own beyond him. They always had a life before he came into the picture. So just because they have a boyfriend now, they can’t give up everything that’s important to them. They need space in the relationship to aspire and pursue their dreams. Their life and aspirations can’t revolve around their partner. He can be a part of it, for sure. But they need space to bloom. If he doesn’t understand this simple thing, then he should ask himself, “Am I a clingy boyfriend?”
Swaty says, “An overbearing boyfriend doesn’t understand the importance of ‘me time’ or space. Clinginess normally gobbles down any idea of space in the relationship. Clingy partners do not like this topic and believe in the ‘two bodies, one soul’ concept. Things like boundary, space, and ‘alone time’ are totally unheard of in their dictionary.”
2. Your feelings come first
I once asked my friend, Anne, “How can you tell if your boyfriend is clingy?” She gave me one instance of their many, many conflicts and the picture became clear to me. One evening, Anne had to be somewhere urgently and she communicated to her boyfriend that she won’t be able to attend the double date they had planned. But just because he hated the idea of becoming the third wheel during dinner with another couple, he emotionally manipulated her into canceling that important meeting. Basically, a clingy boyfriend prioritizes his feelings and insecurities over his partner’s comfort, well-being, and mental peace. They tend to build a prison with love.
3. You don’t realize what your partner wants
Say, they are leaving a party late at night, friendly or professional, where you are not invited. You look into the matter of their safety and offer to drop them home. Or you could talk to their cab driver, ask your partner to share the live location, and later, call to make sure they reached safely. Till this point, it is absolutely normal and responsible on your part.
But following the cab or dropping by at their place to see if they have returned or not is way across the line. Especially, if they assure you that they can handle it or after they explicitly tell you they are fine. Not being mature enough to understand boundaries is one of the signs of clingy partner.
4. You always feel they don’t love you enough
If your partner forgets that you have to travel two days later on a work trip or isn’t too bothered about what you ate for breakfast, that does not mean they don’t love you anymore. When you are sitting in that conference room busy in a meeting, you also can’t answer their messages. Does that mean your feelings of love vanished magically?
If you still believe that your partner should ask you and look into every detail of your life to prove their feelings for you, you are being quite unreasonable. Relationships do not work that way. You are two separate individuals with different types of love languages. Why don’t you try to be more considerate and respectful about that?
5. You are stalking your partner on social media
Harry shares, “I told my boyfriend that a few friends are coming over to my place for a sleepover. And he couldn’t help but ring the bell at my place uninvited because he saw me dancing with a guy friend on Instagram. This is not a slight concern, it’s downright stalking. This was one of the first signs of clingy behavior I observed in him.” If you are dropping by on their social media accounts all day long to check what they are posting and what others are commenting, you are being a clingy boyfriend.
According to Swaty’s observations, “An overbearing boyfriend would want to know who the sender is every time a message beeps on his partner’s phone or he’d insist that the partner changes their love relationship status on social media. He might even go to the extent of demanding their password to keep a track of their digital footprints.”
Related Reading: 15 Steps To Get Rid Of A Stalker And Be Safe
6. You want to know minute-to-minute updates
It is extremely easy to analyze if you are too clingy. Ask yourself, “Why am I a clingy boyfriend?” Why do you want to know where your partner is? Why do you want to know what your partner had for lunch every single day? Why do you feel lost if your partner doesn’t respond to your call or text immediately? These are absolute signs that you are being clingy and acting like an insecure boyfriend.
Swaty says, “Not only the virtual world, the stalking comes down to real life as well. They would constantly want to know the whereabouts of their partner. And when I say constantly, I mean 24×7. In case they cannot reach out to their partner, they become very reactive. This reaction could see an outburst in the forms of tantrums, more clinginess, anger, sulking, and irrational behavior.”
7. You are constantly insecure
Are you really concerned about them or are you insecure about your importance in your partner’s life? You need constant reassurance for your sustenance. Face it, you need to keep a tab on them, not for their well-being but for your own mental peace. In a way, you are compelling them to ask themselves, “Is he clingy or controlling? Should I break up with him?” You should have better things to do than playing Sherlock Holmes on your partner.
8. If your partner is with a guy, you see green
Come on, we are living in the 21st Century. You cannot expect your partner to not interact with a man. It’s inevitable that they would have friends from all genders at work, at college, or in the neighborhood. If the moment they talk about a guy, you see a red flag, then clearly you are showing signs of clingy boyfriend. Unhealthy jealousy in a relationship could lead to its slow death. Not every man is falling for your partner, and your partner isn’t falling for the people they are friendly with. It’s absolutely possible to have platonic relationships within the gender you’re attracted to. Don’t you have such bonds in your life too?
9. You are over-possessive
Carla shares a bad memory, “I was just looked at this passing guy fleetingly and all hell broke loose. Sitting right there at the cafe, he started shouting at me for my “abominable” behavior. He didn’t even realize how he humiliated his own girlfriend in a public place simply because he was convinced that man would pick up mixed signals from my one-second glance. He was that possessive about me!”
But this possessiveness can spell doom for your relationship. As you are justifying your actions as being protective, your partner is calculating in their mind, “Is he clingy or controlling?”
Related Reading: 15 Top Signs Of A Selfish Boyfriend
10. You want to feel like their family already
Please realize that you are not yet the husband, you are the boyfriend. In the initial stages of your relationship, there are many things your partner may not lean on you for. So if their parents need medical help, and if they haven’t asked for help, it means they are capable enough to take them to the doctor and you don’t have to rush. And neither do you have to give them instructions on which doctor to see, what investments to make, what diet to follow at home, or what the new colors of the wall in their bedroom should be. These are the many examples of clingy boyfriend.
Your suggestions are welcome after a point but you are not the decision-maker in their life. Being emotionally needy is understandable until your partner begins to lose sympathy. You better buck up and start making some real changes in your attitude before your partner feels you are breathing down their neck.
Does being clingy ruin relationships?
No, it does not necessarily ruin every relationship. A clingy boyfriend doesn’t need a partner who constantly criticizes him for it. In other situations, you can be clingy together and live happily ever after. Just make sure that your clinginess is your responsibility and not your partner’s liability. If one partner forces their eccentric habits and ways of expressing love on the other, it is bound to affect a relationship. You can be clingy without setting it as a standard or proof of love.
Being clingy can kill your relationship when it chokes and suffocates your partner; when your care and concern become their chain and shackle. Remember that it is important to understand your partner’s reception of your nature, but similarly, it is also important for you to be satisfied in the relationship. As important as it for you to work on yourself and give your lover space, it is also their duty to let you be yourself and accept you with your traumas.
Swaty concludes this conflict by saying, “It is difficult to generalize and give a verdict on such relationships. However, even if all this possessiveness and clinginess has a feel-good factor toward the beginning, it can have an adverse impact on the relationship as time passes. Especially if the other partner is high on attachment avoidance, they might feel extremely claustrophobic and stifled in the relationship.
“Chances of such relationships being happy and healthy are low as the partner would naturally want to step out and mingle with the other quarters of their life. Also, the trust issues and the insecurity can have a negative impact on the mental well-being of his partner. After all, who wants to validate and reaffirm their love and fidelity every day?”
A clingy boyfriend doesn’t give their partner any space, nor are they considerate of the other person’s feelings and emotional health. They would stalk their partner all the time and look for validation because they are extremely insecure about themselves and in the relationship.
If your boyfriend always tries to keep a tab on you, tracks your every movement, dictates you what to do and how to conduct yourself, and becomes extremely possessive, then he is clearly showing the signs of clinginess.
Clinginess can be marked as a red flag after a certain point if a person starts to make their partner feel suffocated and chained in the relationship.