How To Get Over 5 Insecurities In A Relationship, According To Therapists
Unfortunately, we aren't at a point yet when humans can mind-read each other's insecurities and automatically help each other handle them. That'd be nice, huh? If you're dating someone, there's a chance that your insecurities may at some point become heightened. If you're thinking about how to get over insecurities in a relationship, the next step will likely involve some form of communication and self-awareness. Yes, sometimes we have to be adults. And adulting involves advocating for yourself and your discomfort, compromising in certain situations, and sometimes, being willing to admit when you're wrong.
"No matter the topic ... it's really important to look in the mirror and seek to understand why our insecurity has been triggered," therapist Tiffany Ashenfelter tells Elite Daily. She suggests that you ask questions such as, "When [or] where has this been felt before, when [or] where was the first time this insecurity was felt? Why is it coming up right now?"
Ashenfelter says that asking these questions can prompt you to realize that your "partner may not be doing anything wrong," leading you to resolve your feelings faster.
As most people will tell you, communication is key. Psychotherapist and women's support group facilitator Allison Abrams says that confronting your insecurities with your partner can help to build intimacy. And also, your insecurities may actually have nothing to do with you current partner — if you feel these issues have stemmed from a past partner, consider reaching out for help, and possibly considering talking to a therapist to get to the core of your insecurities.
If you're dealing with insecurities in your current relationship, read on to learn how to handle them.
You feel like your partner is bored by you 'cause they're on their phone a lot.
If your partner goes on their phone often when you're on dates or hanging out, it doesn't automatically mean they're bored by you. Just like you want to check social media, or answer texts — it's possible that your partner does, too. But if it's to the point of where you think they're being dismissive of you, it's understandable you'd feel insecure about it.
Lauren Consul, licensed marriage and family therapist in California and the co-founder of GreatFullDays, suggests you question why you're uncomfortable with your partner's phone usage.
"Once you have established your 'why,' it will help you understand what's triggering you and how to approach the topic with your partner," Consul tells Elite Daily. "For instance, if you figure out [that] you are feeling insecure about their phone usage because you feel disconnected, you can approach your partner by saying you feel disconnected lately and would like to engage in activities that make you feel connected, rather than approaching with a blaming attitude of 'you're always on your phone!' The former will actually move the relationship forward, whereas the latter won't."
You compare yourself to your partner's exes.
As someone who has personally compared herself to her partner's ex's body, it can for sure make your mind go overboard with jealousy and insecurities. You need to remember, though, that your partner is with you because they're attracted to you. Comparing yourself to their past romantic interests serves you no good because you're who they want now.
Ashenfelter offers some advice on how to deal with this issue.
"An example of how to approach sharing from a vulnerable place may sound something like this, 'I am feeling really insecure and struggling with comparing myself and my body to that of your ex. I worry I am not as pretty as her,'" Ashenfelter says. "This type of statement keeps the focus on self rather than [the] other and can minimize defensiveness, allowing our partner to hear our pain which makes it more likely they will be able to lean in and soothe it."
You think your partner is too flirty with other people.
Not all flirting implies a suggestive move (like certain touching), but if your partner is simply bantering with their friends or hugging them per usual, you may want to consider if you're reading too much into things. Understand what your boundaries are, and whether or not you also exhibit the same "flirty" behavior with your own friends. If this is something you see as a serious issue, it's definitely something to address with your partner, and see if it's harmless on their end.
Jacob Kountz, a marriage and family therapist trainee and clinic manager of California State University, Bakersfield, suggests that you and your partner have a conversation about what you each think crosses the line when it comes to flirting.
"Once definitions are understood, it's great to begin talking about healthy boundaries and what you are and are not comfortable with," Kountz tells Elite Daily. "Honesty and trust revolve around boundaries, so keep those aspects in mind when you are separate from your partner. If your partner is too flirty, let them know what you notice, 'Hey, I noticed yesterday that you kept locking eyes with this other girl at the restaurant, did you notice that too?' A simple non-threatening approach like this is a great way to begin a conversation about flirting too much."
You're insecure your partner is more professionally accomplished than you.
If you're dating someone older than you, or someone who's pursuing a graduate degree while you're off pursuing some other endeavor, it's normal to struggle with feelings of inadequacy in the relationship — as if you're not bringing enough to the table.
"Remind yourself that we all follow different paths professionally," Nicole Lambert, a licensed mental health counselor, tells Elite Daily. "Instead of comparing yourself to your [partner's] success, try practicing self compassion for yourself and then celebrate your partner success with them!"
You feel bad for having fewer friends than your partner.
As an introvert, this is something that I totally get — I sometimes feel self-conscious being with a partner who's the life of the party. Yes, it can bring me out of my own shell, but sometimes I worry I'm too much of a loner to "hang" with their crowd. But honestly? That aspect of your personality could be something your partner likes about you: that you don't need to have a full-on squad to enjoy yourself.
Julie Williamson, a licensed professional counselor in St. Louis, says that if your partner is much more social than you, it could give you motivation to find your own group you connect with, as well.
"However, if you feel your partner has a more vibrant social life than you do, but you're content with what you have, consider what is really the source of your insecurity," Williamson says. "Are you worried they might find you boring or find someone else to be with? Address these concerns with them." It's also entirely likely you're A-OK with being alone and more introverted. I know I am, probably around 90 percent of the time.
Talking through your insecurities with your partner can easily make you feel that much better about being with that person — or it can prove that dating them is more effort than it's worth. You won't know unless you address it head-on, so go ahead and initiate those conversations. Try adulting, I believe in you.
Correction: After further review, Dr. Damian Jacob Markiewicz Sendler's quotes have been removed from this article because they fail to meet Elite Daily's editorial standards for publishing.