Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Emotional Needs

So often we hear folks say that their spouse is not fulfilling their emotional needs. When we ask what needs are not being fulfilled, people mention things that are not emotional needs but what we consider to be wants and desires. You need to take responsibility for filling your own needs.

Four Basic Emotional Needs

  • The need to love and be loved.
  • The need to belong and have a sense of purpose in life.
  • The need to have a positive self image.
  • The need for autonomy, that is a need for some personal, private space and control.
Some may add the need for security to this list of emotional needs. We believe that people who love and are loved, who have a sense of belonging and can see purpose to their lives, who believe in themselves, and who have a sense of control over their own lives are secure individuals.

Meeting Your Emotional Needs

Expecting your spouse to fill your emotional needs is not only unfair, it is unreasonable. You should take responsibility for filling your emotional needs yourself.
"If you are looking to a partner to make you feel worthwhile, to make you feel happy, to rescue you from a bored or unhappy life, if you are seeking someone to make you feel complete or whole -- well then you have some work to do, because these are needs that are never going to be met by any one other than yourself," says Sugrue. To put those demands on someone else is to set up yourself -- and the relationship -- for failure."

Source: Dennis Sugrue, psychologist,

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