Do you have an insecure partner? Daniel Dowling has three tips that will transform your relationship.
“What did I do to make her react like this?”
You know the feeling. Insecurity is a black hole that consumes relationships from the inside out. It makes men feel less manly, and women less cherished. Often when we deal with a spouse’s insecurity, the root cause lies much deeper than the surface level problem.
You could be unconsciously giving your partner reasons to be insecure with many “normal” relationship behaviors, so read on to learn about three common blind spots that sabotage relationship security.
1. Rethink Porn
If you are in a relationship, commitment is what holds you together. You need commitment to feel loved, but women are biologically attuned to commitment; their children depend on it for survival, and women have to carry them. Nothing says commitment like burning through 10 of the most beautiful women on earth in 10 minutes. Watching porn sends the message that your partner isn’t enough, and she will silently compare herself to the plastic and airbrushed bodies in the films. Enter: Envy, Jealousy, and Insecurity.
If the infinite mystery in a woman’s heart isn’t enough to hold the attention of one man forever, then what will? Women want to be cherished and sought after before anyone and anything else, and they deserve to be. But when porn enters the picture, a woman can’t help but feel less beautiful in your eyes.
Real beauty is the reflection of an internal goodness that radiates outward. So, women who compete with porn not only feel externally insufficient, but also unworthy on the inside. If you want to reveal the depth of your commitment, prove it to her by committing your entire being to her; your mind, your heart, your emotions, and your sexuality.
If porn isn’t helping you to become more emotionally connected and intimate with your partner, and if it isn’t boosting her security and self worth, consider ditching it. (If…?)
2. Dial back the physicality
Oftentimes women will give themselves up more than they feel comfortable with to feel safe and loved. But lovemaking that arises from insecurity will only breed more insecurity. If you have any suspicion that your girlfriend or wife initiates sex out of fear of losing you, there are many non-physical ways you can improve your relationship.
Offering a foot rub or back rub (with oil) is a great way to show her how much she is desired, and without any selfish motivation. Non-sexual touching like massages also invites emotional connection, and opens opportunities to talk about sensitive topics.
Invite her to connect emotionally through your non-sexual touches, and by being vulnerable with her. Though we don’t feel like it all the time, men can seem hard and inaccessible even when we don’t intend to. Sometimes sharing a concern or a feeling is just what a woman needs to feel safe in sharing her innermost world with you. Once she opens up about her deepest fears and anxieties with you, you will have the information needed to show commitment where she needs it most.
How sex can create insecurity
Prematurely physical relationships create insecurity because the act of sex is a symbol of complete commitment (whether we realize it or not). Sex was invented long before birth control, and since children have historically been associated with sex, we are hardwired for lasting sexual bonds. Giving your whole body to someone without also giving your whole mind, heart, and future creates an incongruence that slowly eats at a relationship until there’s no security left.
You can rebuild security in a relationship by redoubling your commitment to her mind and heart, and by reserving sex for the deepest commitment to life and love; until sex is a celebration of your growth and commitment together.
People instinctively know that physical beauty has a shelf life, so a woman’s security lies in her partner’s ability to see past the flesh and into her innermost beauty.
3. Consider her wounds
Since half of marriages end in divorce, there are many young girls grown into women who have emptiness where a father’s love should have been. This is a deep pain that many women would sooner keep buried than to be vulnerable with, but any mistrust of a father figure will translate to mistrust in her partner. And until those wounds are acknowledged and healed, insecurity will continue to surface in a relationship.
A woman needs to feel completely loved and cherished in order to give herself entirely to a man, and an internalized sense of abandonment can prevent her from ever being fully free. If you are in a relationship with such a woman, don’t lose hope. Though it isn’t your responsibility to “fix” her, you can help her by fostering intimacy through vulnerability. When a woman begins to feel the sting of an old wound resurface, she has a tendency of covering it up by closing off entirely, or by unleashing emotionally.
If you are confronted with a weird-seeming emotional response to your actions, try your best not to feel offended. If you feel attacked, withhold your counterattack. Instead, empathize with her need to be secure, and with the roots of her insecurity.
Reflect her emotions back
Oftentimes people need to hear their emotions reflected back to them in order to understand them fully, and to feel understood. Women fall under the umbrella of people. Look into the feelings and needs behind her words, and share them with her. “It seems like you’re feeling alone and scared. But I’m here. You can talk to me. You can tell me anything, babe. Why are you hurting like this?” Notice that this dialogue is centered on her emotions and needs. She is the one in need.
The last thing an insecure woman needs to hear is a defensive counterattack, like: “What do you want me to do about it? I never do anything wrong, and you always treat me like a criminal!” Women who express their insecurity are in need of acknowledgement and security in that moment.
Women who haven’t been shown the selfless and cherishing love of a solid father tend to look for validation in the arms of any man who will validate her beauty, whether he is selfless and caring or not. Since fathers care for their daughters in non-sexual ways, it is almost impossible to fill a father wound with a sexual relationship. Especially since so many men are interested in casual relationships, a heavy expectation from a wounded woman can spell trouble even if the man hasn’t given her specific reasons not to trust him.
If you sense problems that you have no hope of solving for your girlfriend, it’s time to seriously reconsider your reason for dating. Trying to fill a gaping father hole will only frustrate you and breed more insecurity in your partner. But if you have a selfless kind of love, and a deep commitment to her greatest good, you can help her heal by creating an environment where she can be vulnerable and expressive of her deepest emotions.
Originally published at DowlingWriter.com