Clingy Vs. Loving and Why Do Cyber-bullies Try to Alienate You?
What is the border of loving and what is beyond it in the "clingy" danger-zone?
I care too much. Why? I don't know. I just know that I am caring by nature: it was determined by my personality test. I'm the ENFJ, or "Mentor" personality type based on the Jung/Myers-Brigg version. And what can I say? It has explained a lot.
For one, my entire focus in life is to bring harmony and joy into my relationships. Everyone. Friends and family alike. Shoot, if I see potential in a stranger, I sure as heck will let them know that there is "greatness" in them! So what is wrong with me? I've been told I'm "too clingy."
What? I have been single for 2 1/2 years! And I'm actually happy? What? Here are some characteristics of my type:
To be clear, I'd like to say that I'm proud of my personality type. For one, I share the same qualities as Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Dr. Phil, Ben Affleck, and Ben Stiller. Oh, and I think Matthew McConaughey, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mikhail Gorbachev, and Diane Sawyer are also ENFJs. We make up only 4% of the female population, and 2% of men. I guess that makes us all "abnormal," along with "clingy."
Why do I use the word "clingy?" Let me tell you about my morning.
I like to go on anonymous forums about relationships to help people. Well, this morning, a guy was seeking advice about what to do with his six-month relationship to a more "aloof" type than he was. He claimed he checked in with her daily asking how her day was going, with cold returns. Or he would compliment her, and she would respond with a "stop it!" Either way, I could totally see myself in this poor guy's shoes. I'd lived in a marriage of un-requited love for over 15 years before my ex "pulled the plug." I'm sure he thought I was smothering, "clingy" or "needy," but in all fairness, I just wanted closeness. I wanted him to appreciate me for all I was. I wanted him to see all the qualities I had. I just longed to hear his voice daily, over the phone, telling me he was thinking about me, and missed me.... Hey, I was married to the guy for 15 years, and we had three kids together, so I think it was only fair that he let me know when he was going to make it home for dinner (or not).
So, when I wrote a response to this man who was seeking advice for how to proceed forward in his relationship with "miss aloof," I dared to be too honest, and told the guy I wished I could meet someone like him. That was a mistake.... at least when you consider there are cyber-bullies ready and waiting to pounce on your honesty/weakness.
Next thing I knew, I was being clumped together with so-called "Mr. Needy," and I found it quite offensive when the anonymous cyber-bully called herself (and all the other posters there) "normal," and the OP and I "were not." So like Young Frankenstein, I became "Abby-Normal" in two seconds of cyber-space. And here I was thinking I had made so much progress in my self-help, self-discovery, self-improvement, self-such-and-such to have learned better than to be a "needy" or "clingy" co-dependent type I was in my relationship. Long story short: I think I'm still "healthy" as opposed to "abby-normal" when it comes to the amount of care/love a person should give in a relationship.
So what is considered "healthy" (or "loving") in a relationship, and what is "clingy?" You help me decide if I need to seek therapy or I'm still within "normal" range.
- You expect a phone call, text or message each day from the person you love, regardless of whether or not you'll see them in your day.
- They are happy when you compliment them, and reciprocate the adoration.
- They keep you "in the loop" with what's going on in their life, in personal, work, family or other related issues.
- You can tell them about how you feel without being stone-walled, alienated, or teased for being "too sensitive," or any other derogatory remark.
- Your loved one is the first person you share your news with: hope, joy, sorrow or pain.
- You crave hearing about your loved one's day, no matter how mundane, boring or uneventful it was, to you, it was the most exciting bit of news in your day.
- You don't need words-- you just want to rub the shoulders and forehead or run your fingers through the hair of the one you love. And maybe offer other "perks" later on behind closed doors when you sense they need your support.
- When you get excited, your thoughts all have one path: to your loved one. He or she is all you think about, and in a perfect world, that's all they think of about you.
So, how do I fare? Am I too clingy, or too loving? I really can't say, because I'm biased. Is it time for therapy, or time to reassess what kind of person I should spend time with? What should I tell Ms. "Cyber-bully?" I think name-calling is inappropriate for grown-ups as well as kindergarteners.
Like I told the cyber-bully: "Normal is what's normal for you." Quite honestly, I don't judge those who are savant. There are few of them, but in their world, they are "normal," and we less gifted are "weird." I guess in this world, I'm a "feeling-savant." Or so I'd like to think.
What are your thoughts? Am I too needy, or too loving? Is it normal to ignore your significant other? Should I, too, practice being more aloof?