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Emotional Dependency - Ways to Overcome It

Published on Dec 13, 2022 and last reviewed on Feb 28, 2023   -  4 min read


Emotional dependency primarily means an inability to normalize and acknowledge one's emotions, feelings, thoughts, and actions. And one clings to others for fulfillment.


Many of us seek support from family members, partners, and friends. This emotional support is always beneficial. Being emotionally dependent on someone for basic needs is emotional dependency. Unfortunately, people everywhere are unaware of this condition and undergo these emotional states.

What Is an Emotional Dependency?

Emotional dependence is a dependent psychological condition in which a person wholly depends on another person for feelings such as joy, guilt, anger, fear, or distress. The particular person has the inadequacy to take responsibility for their emotions, expressions, and feelings. And whenever their loved ones are not around, the person with emotional dependence does not have control over themselves and feels lost. The locus of control is completely outside, and as a result, they always seek the proximity of others to fill this lacuna.

What Causes Emotional Dependence?

There are no such causative factors for emotional dependence. However, several qualities of a person determine and discrepant him emotionally dependent or independent. Humankind with the following themes is more likely to have an emotional dependency.

In addition, emotional dependency can be the manifestation of certain underlying disorders.

  • Obsessive compulsive disorders in relationships.
  • Trauma.
  • Attachment syle in childhood.
  • Narcisstic personality disorder (victim tendency).

How to Identify People With Emotional Dependence?

It is quite challenging to recognize or identify humans with emotional dependence as they mostly ignore their situations and refuse to accept them. However, the symptoms and characteristics of a person with emotional dependence are mentioned below.

  • Avoiding the circumstances of being alone.

  • The exaggerated fear of losing or leaving someone they love the most.

  • Low self-esteem.

  • Behavioral changes are often noticed as they take power to be with their loved ones. Behavioral changes include changes in their fundamental activities, routines, and personality.

  • Guilt feeling when their people are not satisfied.

  • Persistent feelings of love and affection.

  • Exhibit anxiety and depression when they do not receive the attention they want.

  • They avoid conflicts by pleasing their loved ones even though the mistake is not theirs.

  • They can go to places just to keep the relationship firmer.

  • Expressing jealousy and possession habitually.

How Can Emotional Dependence Be Prevented?

Our emotions and personality develop as soon as we are in childhood, which is a great challenge too. We grow with emotions through the years. Maintaining good emotional health could prevent us from emotional dependence. In addition, cherishing our self-esteem, feelings, and self-confidence would eventually lead us to become emotionally independent. However, we must also comprehend to overcome insecurities.

What Is the Management of Emotional Dependence?

When the key to control is not in our hands, psychologists diagnose and treat the condition through various methods and guide us to be quite solitary and emotionally independent in the future. Firstly, the therapies focus on recognizing the condition, detecting the cause, and treating it. Then, medical practitioners commonly perform the succeeding interventions.

How to Overcome Emotional Dependence?

Though emotional dependency has some threats, people can easily overcome them when they display the right actions and thoughts. The decisions and achievements they make depend on others in this condition. The consecutive steps are simple and reliable for overcoming emotional dependency.

  • Be Emotionally Strong: Foremost, realize ones emotions are theirs and not others. Whenever one feels low, they should have their own time and cope with such feelings and never seek others to fix them. And develop patience.

  • Expand Mental Strength: The internal mental capacity determines one’s behavior. Practice meditation and breathing exercises and spend time with nature. Improving positive thoughts and feelings would eventually result in excellent mental strength. Practice meditation and breathing exercises and spend time with nature.

  • Spend Time Alone: Take time for oneself by sitting quietly in a place of interruptions. One can give oneself a pep talk, go for a walk, paint, or write an article. Explore the thoughts and urges when alone, and work on that. This practice, sooner or later, embraces the self-esteem.

  • Take Care of Onerself: It is vital to have a concern about ones physical and mental health. Give priority to the desires, interests, and goals. Never expect others to take care of ones needs; be there for oneself. One should make their own decisions.

  • Avoid the Triggering Elements of Emotional Dependency: Attempt to identify the triggering factors that makes one dependent on someone and get rid of them as soon as possible. For example, triggering factors include stress from external family conflicts or past experiences and flaws.

  • Extend Socialization: Have time with different people than family and friends. Get to know new people in jobs, schools, and colleges. Donate stuff and love.

  • Get Rid of the Past: Many people have fear and anxiety from past experiences that would simply interfere with their present and dependency. Therefore, do not ever recall such thoughts and past relations.

  • Be Independent: It is all about not being too dependent emotionally on others. Dependency is considered healthy only when one moves with respect, empathy, and except for neediness.

  • Meet ones basic needs and manage them on their own. Know what one want and never let others know first.

  • Do not seek permission from others, even for minor stuff.

  • Practice self-love.

  • One should never get angry or guilty when someone disheartens. Instead, take everything in a good and friendly way and sort it out.

  • Practice productive things rather than being lazy around.

  • Have patience.

  • Get guidance from professionals in case of toughness.


Emotional dependency is not a significant condition or illness to worry about. However, identifying those trigger factors and ensuring self-love and self-time would eventually prevent emotional dependency. End of the day, self-connection and self-esteem matter.

Article Resources

Last reviewed at:
28 Feb 2023  -  4 min read




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