This week on “Risky Tips,” comedian Kate Quigley has some suggestions for a man who seems to get too much attention from his suffocating girlfriend. Poor bastard. Join us for the latest edition of frisky dating advice with our favorite podcast personality. When you’re done here, check out the latest episode of #DateFails at the bottom.
My girlfriend is kind of needy. She wants to be with me all the time, but I like alone time. Can you please help?
Thanks for the laughs,
Hey there, Loner BF!
This is an especially interesting question for me because I have definitely been “that girl” at times. It’s usually before they’re my boyfriend though. Guys seem to be more “needy,” as you call it, right at the beginning when they’re trying to win you over. I’m sure you’ve been that guy once or twice.
Even if you love alone time, I have found that most guys, when they’re really into a girl, tend to try and make sure there are no other men competing. Whether they do it with a little over-texting or asking what you’re up to every night, men definitely can get a bit clingy when they’re trying to claim their stake. Some women do this early on as well, but most of my girlfriends tend to be much more chill until we actually hold the “girlfriend” title.
That seems to be the turning point where most men want more space, and most women want to leave a toothbrush, tampons and a toolbox of makeup at your house. How the hell do you navigate this mess? It’s a tricky one, but fortunately, I have quite a bit of experience in this department.
Most of the time, when a woman wants to be around you constantly, it’s not really because she’s so insanely in love with you that she just can’t get enough. No one wants to be around the same person all the time. We all need breaks from everyone, but if she insists on being around you 24/7, I would suggest it’s because somewhere, deep inside, she has a fear of losing you. Or a fear of what will happen if she’s not there.
This may not be your fault in any way. It may be her issue completely, and it’s certainly not healthy, but it is common. It may even be something she could use therapy for. Perhaps someone cheated on her, or maybe her father left when she was young, or someone died or ghosted on her unexpectedly, and she has been left with massive abandonment issues! Not that I’m speaking from experience here at all (clears throat). Any of this could lead to her being a bit clingy, possibly even trying to control your actions (again, totally not speaking from experience).
I have a few suggestions for you…
Give Her An All-Access Pass
Give her a key (if she doesn’t have one already). OK now, hear me out: an open invite to come by whenever she wants (not move in). Now, I know what you’re probably thinking. “Isn’t this the exact opposite of more space?” Well, yes and no.
The school of thought is, if you let your kid have an occasional beer, it shows them that drinking isn’t that exciting. Then they will drink less recklessly when party time comes. Same theory here. If she can see you any time, it shows that you’re not going anywhere or doing anything behind her back that you’re worried about her seeing. So then, hopefully, she feels less need to be around you constantly. The more you make it completely apparent that you want to be with her, the more relaxed she should become with you taking space.
This kind of full transparency in relationships has always really worked for me. But everyone is different.
Let’s Play: Make A Deal
I wish I knew more about your relationship. Are you living together? Do you ever want to live together? If you’re not, and you know you never want to, this would be a great time to have a talk about wanting different things and either slowing down or breaking up. Sounds like she’s going to want to live with you eventually if she’s already trying to be with you 24/7.
If you do live together, make a deal. There’s something she loves that she would wish you would do more of. What could that be? Does she love when you shop with her? Does she love a foot massage? Think of something she really enjoys, but she knows you wouldn’t do it if you didn’t love her (and going down on her doesn’t count, but helps!).
If you give her something she wants, like a foot rub, especially when she knows you hate feet, she’s more likely to be open-minded with you when it comes to something you want. During said foot rub, you could maybe put in a request of your own, say, more “me time” for yourself. Functioning relationships are all about quid pro quos. Both of you have to put out a little, even if you don’t always want to.
In my opinion, if you ask her for this and she can’t agree to it, you have every right to find someone who can. Alone time is massively important. It helps you recharge the way vacation does for work.
Buy Her Off: Gifts to Get Her Out of the House
This is slightly conniving, but it is Risky Tips, after all. If you’re positive you want to stay with her, the negotiating and all-access pass didn’t work, and you happen to have a little disposable income, then just keep buying her gift (trips to the spa, concert tickets, maybe go bold with a weekend getaway for her and a girlfriend). She’ll see you as generous and you get what you want, even if it is a little manipulative.
If you love this third option, and it’s still not working for you, (full transparency) I’m currently single, and you should dump her and date me (just kidding, unless you’re into it).
Best of luck! Please let me know what happens!