Love, Attraction and Neediness

Posted on by Sen.

This is a post about how love, and attraction, operates in our human expression, the various pitfalls of it and how to come to a place of balance in this dimension. Love when it’s not touched by fear is like “appreciation”. The same love when touched by fear turns into neediness, and this neediness can, […]

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  1. Jad

    Sen, I didn’t see the response till now, so please ignore my other post I thought you didn’t reply.

    I do understand what you mean, but I’m a guy who’s values is to look later get married, I don’t want to move from one relation to another to get what I want.

    I was asking you about this affection enjoyment thing, because it still happens to me:
    I enjoy talking to a girl and being affectionate, and once she gives me the affection I want, I start not to want her at all anymore. And it’s really frustrating for me, because the girl becomes wanting me and I want to get to know her more and I don’t want to keep making girls think I want them then cut them off, isn’t there a way where I could enjoy the affection, without having it disappear?

    I really liked what u said about the 4 elements in a relation.

    One more thing, you said that you can experience attraction that is when the other is a challenge;
    In my opinion, I think that this is a need for validation, and when I start feeling that I only want a girl just because I can’t get her, I consciously stop myself, because I don’t need to get her to prove to myself I can. When you need validation, or like a girl just because she is a challenge, you won’t be happy with the relation; first you will be so frustrated if you don’t get her and when she push pulls you like a toy she owns, 2nd, once you get her, you’ll feel validated and not want her anymore. Don’t you think?

    When I know who I am and have inner contentment, I don’t need to be push pulled to get the girl who is a challenge to prove that I can, something I learned from self-development; when she sees I don’t need to get her validation just because I don’t have it, and centered in who I am, she will want to be with me because of that and will end up getting her.
    I think that is the main reason why relationships don’t last, the need for validation, once most people get it (mostly by sex for men and neediness for woman), they start to see the person for who he really is, and realize they don’t want him.

    I would love it if you elaborate on the way to enjoy affection, without turning all cold on the other person once you do. I’m guessing here, but maybe, when you really start to know the person, you’ll start to base that love or affection on something more built.

    1. Sen Post author

      Jad, it’s true that the more aware you become (and more inner contentment or inner wholeness) that you have, the less you are moved by “attraction” of any form – be it with a person or with a “goal” or with an object. In fact, attraction is no longer instigated in any strong way towards anything/anyone (even if it is, it will fizzle away soon) – this part of the deal that comes with having inner wholeness. So attraction driven relationships have no real place in a person who has inner wholeness. Also, as you mentioned, you are looking for a “real” relationship, rather than just a relationship for the sake of sex, so in that case your criteria should be to look for a real compatibility. Just affection will not cut it, you can feel affectionate towards a girl with whom you have no real compatibility but you won’t be able to sustain the relationship – because you will get “bored” of her, and start distancing yourself. What’s important is to look for compatibility – someone who matches your way of thinking, who can understand you effortlessly, with whom you can share yourself as you are. When you have compatibility in a relationship, it’s a huge add-on to yourself in that it feels like you now have an “added” mind which can be a huge support towards your expression in life. Two compatible people can make huge in-roads of support in each other’s life. You may not find such a person immediately, may be you need to be a little patient, one thing is for sure, when you do find this person, you will “know” because you will really sense the effortless compatibility.

  2. Jad

    Sen, I really appreciate your advice on finding compatibility, thank you.

    I guess when it’s about being with a girl not just for the affection, attraction, companionship, or physical intimacy, but for the 4 of them together.

    And I think that no matter how I become self-centered, I’ll always have that physical attraction at 1st that will make me want to be with the woman for enjoyment, not the attraction based on proving that I can get her.

    But I guess yea, it’s about finding a compatible person, or about finding a person I’m attracted to, and making her compatible with me, you know what I mean? Making her become a better person and enjoying sharing my life with her. That way I’ll give a lot of value at the beginning, to be able to share value with her later. Because sometimes I find a person who I really am compatible with, I don’t feel physical attraction for.

    Anyway good luck to you Sen and take care.

  3. Jad

    Sorry if I’m asking too much.

    But I feel I understood it wrong, it’s not about finding the 4 factors together, cz they’ll go and come, except companionship I guess as long you’re together.

    Can you elaborate a bit on what compatibility is? What’s the difference between compatibility and companionship, aren’t they both about sharing your life?

    Also, I read somewhere that a great relationship does not depend on being very similar with your partner and sharing the same mind or thoughts, and to appreciate the differences, and you’re saying that you need someone to match your way of thinking. What do you think?

    Thanks a lot Sen.

    1. Sen Post author

      Jad, the way I define compatibility is like a mind connection, where your thinking matches the thinking of your partner – you may have differences in some areas of thinking, which is fine, but there would need to be similarities in most areas, or else it takes a lot of “compromises” to sustain the relationship (which is fine if you like it that way). Similarities are what create the sense of effortless bonding, the differences create space for learning/growth and can also act as a complement (where your partner has skills that you lack and thus compensates for your lack) and hence are also important, but too many differences and less similarities usually causes a feeling of disconnection in your mind. Compatibility in thinking is an important requirement for a real companionship, and a real sense of companionship is a requirement for a long term relationship. Of course, you cannot discount the factors of attraction, affection and physical intimacy, they are all required in their own degrees (a total lack of any of these factor is not conducive to a healthy relationship), but the compatibility is the main criteria for sustaining a long term relationship.

  4. flower

    I think, Sen, with greatest respect, that I have learned so much from your wisdom. I understand too that this is a site concerned with spiritual teachings. However – as a very ordinary (mundane?) person who has only just began to get in touch with her own spirituality – I believe there is still a very long path to travel before I am successfully able to make that ‘transition’. Until then, I feel that there is still a need to blend spirituality with practical solutions. In layman terms, and in understandable, and applicable ways.

    I am in truth, struggling with neediness and anxiety attacks in a new relationship that I am in right now. And while spirituality brings great calm to me, I often feel a need to step away from it, to gain a more practical perspective to my situations. Am I wrong to do this, and should I place 100% trust on how I “feel”? Because I feel that there is still that risk involved – that being a novice, I misjudge my “feelings” and find myself in more unfavorable situations, instead.

    My question thus is, how should I deal with this transition? Am I wrong to still feel a need for a more grounded, practical form of understanding the situations around me, even as I attempt to reach out for spiritual awareness and enlightenment? I would appreciate it very much if you could shed some light on this.

    1. Sen Post author

      Flower, I think the whole deal of conventional spirituality can easily become a new form of delusion and imbalance. I would not refer to this blog as a “spirituality oriented” blog rather it’s more of a “how to move towards balanced/wholeness-based living” blog and the pointers are based on a logical and “open” observation of life. So instead of using the term “spirituality”, it’s better if you work with the idea of “growing in awareness”. Growing in awareness involves letting go of the momentum of past unconsciousness (which can cloud your clarity) as well as the willingness to see/understand reality in an open manner (so that you are not holding on to deluded thinking) – the former requires the a “phase of release” (and open allowing towards releasing all the past accumulation, by no longer suppressing or over-identifying with the imbalanced movement of emotion/thought) while the later is about connecting with the attitude of learning/reasoning. If you see this blog in its entirety, you will notice that some posts are aimed towards giving an understanding about the “phase of release” (the phase of letting go of the past momentum) and some posts are aimed at providing an aligned understanding about life/reality along with pointers towards developing the attitude of conscious choice based on reasoning. You can see that it’s not some “black and white” deal of just doing something spiritual, rather it’s a practical approach to living life in a balanced way by consciously releasing the past momentum created by unconscious living and incorporating an aligned understanding of life. If you can invest some time to go through a variety of posts (you can just focus on posts written this year), you will be able to get a well-rounded understanding of what the journey towards inner wholeness, and eventually balanced-living, involves.

      If you read a post like – FAQ on the state of allowing – it defines, in a practical/reasonable manner, the dynamics of what the state of allowing involves and what it accomplishes for you in your journey towards finding inner balance. Then there are posts like – Seeing through deluded thinking – where I talk about how one needs to use ability to “reason”, and willingness to see reality as it is, to see through limiting/deluded patterns of thinking. So your approach of wanting a grounded, practical form of understanding (of your life-situation) is totally valid, and is the right approach, and you need to see the journey towards finding inner balance as a means towards practical living – because balanced living is the path towards aligned living, which is very practical towards living your expression, and enjoying experiences, from a place of wisdom.

    2. Markus

      flower, don’t shy away from a need for practical understanding of situations. If you wish to understand how and why and what, sorting out what you see and feel is very good. You learn about yourself, how you react to those around you, or why you do so.

      This practical understanding reflects how well you know yourself. If you observe your life honestly, such sorting IS the growth of your spiritual awareness. One needs awareness and honesty to see the truth of a situation; the truth is what shows you what you need to see in order to grow in awareness – a process that feeds itself.

  5. Tibrahi


    One thing about spirituality is someone can become so lost in seeking, in searching, in trying to figure out what teachers and texts mean. From what I have noticed the more I follow the process of coming to what Sen calls inner wholeness the more I see what these teachers mean, and when seen clearly its not as extraordinary as I think it would have been (when seeking). I think it’s good to see that spirituality should be understandable. I’m sure Sen would say the same thing, that there are a ton of traps spirituality can cause for a student developing a misunderstanding from the teachings. It can lead to a lot of searching, seeking, delusion trying to find things that have been misleading. In stepping away to gain a more practical perspective on your situations is in no way wrong, and it shows you can stand on your own two feet (not going just blindly with spirituality or anyone).

    Also it may benefit you to see if when you are alone, to see how you are solving a situation and gain a perspective on your thinking. Anxiety attacks are a sign of a high mind momentum, and its also a sign to start into a phase of releasing the mind. There are several posts on the blog about this (i’ll add them at the bottom as part of my response). As you release the mind and as your awareness grows, your understandings and perspectives of your situations are seen very clearly (in spiritual terms it would could be said as seeing reality as it actually is, or seeing what is). It also isn’t wrong to have a need for a more grounded and practical understanding, and that will never end. Even “enlightened” people still want to grow and develop aspects and understandings depending on the area of life their interest is in. Sen would probably say something like, that is also part of growth and life is always growing and as all of us are life also, we will never stop growing.

    Some helpful articles listed below:
    (I am adding this article because, for me, following my own wisdom and logic, rather than just blindly following my anyone, be it Sen, a Teacher, Buddah, Jesus, My parents, my mind or anyone else has been a very important thing and has definitely lead me more in leading my own life. As you read and go through this process, its important not to blindly believe but see if you agree from your own perspective and wisdom. Also when you are happy from following your own wisdom, perspectives, views, desires, etc, then it really is completely your own happiness.)

    That being said, here are the articles i found helpful of going through the transition of releasing the mind’s momentum.

    1. flower

      Tibrahi, thank you for your help and advise. I am a rather intuitive person and when I started this ‘journey’ of self-discovery and growth, there were many times when what I read (and tried to put to practise) went against what I intuitively felt was fundamentally right, and so I’ve taken quite a few turns here and there. But even so, that is ok because I feel that I’ve come far from where I originally was (just a mess of bad emotions and negativity). I’ve met with what you might term as delusion, but I found that I emerged (from the delusion) with new understanding of myself. So in that sense, there is no loss for me, only gain, and I am glad…

      Sen’s blog is very new to me, and I am taking delight in going through his words, slowly absorbing and learning new things. Thank you for the additional links that you have added on.

  6. flower

    Sen, since my previous comment, I have been reading through the rest of the blog, although at a very, very slow pace in order to digest and understand. Thank you for your patience and guidance.

    1. nurgis

      one can gain a lot of sense about one self reading these posts. I have been looking for answers for so long and just didn´t find them and somehow I stumbled on this website and I just feel like the cloud has lifted. All of a sudden my knotted thought as dissolving into a straight unknotted rope and it feels good since I really thought for a while that I was going insane thinking about the same thing ALL THE TIME. I just did not know how to get rid of these thoughts but it´s coming together slowly thanks to all of you!

  7. Joao

    Thank you, Sen!

  8. MB

    I have a hard time completely letting go of attracting men that are distant. I don’t feel as much attraction towards men that are loving and nice to me. I have been seeing a relationship therapist for 3 years. I’m aware of what is the cause of it. My dad was distant toward me during chilhood. I’m starting to change, but I just need som advice to completely let go.

    I’m dating a really nice guy now, but I don’t feel as much attraction towards him yet. Can feelings develop over time. If I give it a couple of months?
    Is it true that the right man will show up when you are ready. And you will know it when it happens?

    1. Sen Post author

      MB, you will have to reconcile the inner conflict that’s present in you in terms of your own neediness and your lack of attraction for neediness in your partner. Basically, in order for your neediness to be satisfied you would need a needy man (basically the overly nice, trying to please kinda man) but you are naturally not attracted to a needy man (for obvious reasons) – hence the loop of conflict. However, when you go purely with your attraction (which is for an independent guy) while still holding on to your vibe of neediness, you have the experience of “lack” in terms of the guy’s behavior towards you which is just the manifestation of the needy vibe which is present in you. The bottom-line of course is to let go of this neediness, what you find un-attractive in a guy (his neediness) is also what’s present in you which keeps you from truly attracting a balanced guy (considering that having a real relationship is your desire). You will have to spend some time bringing a deeper awareness to your own sense of inner lack (possibly a lack of feeling loved, stemming from your upbringing) – this lack will be in conflict with your natural attraction towards a non-needy man. Once you become deeply aware of the presence of this sense of lack in you, you will need to start letting go of being identified with it – the lack is like a momentum and as you start letting go of identifying with it, it naturally ebbs away in force leaving a natural balance behind.

  9. lee

    I have a comment/question – i understand in the last few paragraphs what you are saying is true. Many of us experience and view our relationships and their appropriateness through a ‘filter’ of conditioning, society, religion, etc. (whether this is being polygamous, being homosexual, even being alone! or otherwise).

    You rightly say that we are still ‘thinking’ creatures at the end of the day, and that it is not for us to give up mental activity altogether in favour of spiritual, but I assume – as I am at this point putting words in your mouth – that we are to combine these elements in the most balanced, healthy way.I also agree with this wholeheartedly, and have had the same echoed back to me by guides and teachers from all different modalities.

    Recently, I have been both reading psychological tests and undergoing therapy, whilst still practicing and allowing myself to learn in many different ways. For me, the counselling provides me the ability to see slightly deeper into my own patterns of behaviour and held beliefs going back to my childhood.

    I have a thought however – which is – I’ve been reading recently about ‘triangulation’ and the phenomenon of ‘infatuation/devaluation’. While these are psychological concepts, I see these ideas echoed in spirituality as well. With infatuation/devaluation in particular – the ryhthm of life is the heartbeat – up and down, peak and trough – and likely, anything you infatuate with will later be something you devalue.

    But specifically in regards to triangulation – which in rough terms is often can be seen as the ‘madonna/whore’ complex or in any scenario where you split your love between multiple people/outlets…

    If I remove my judgement from this (as someone that was raised to be in a sexually and emotionally monogamous relationship), then I can only decipher that the only problem possible with these types of arrangements is when one side of the party is not honest enough with themselves to understand this is their pattern, and to communicate and seek a willing partner for the other half. Do you think this could be true?

    So – Sen – how do you know? I find myself often in relationships with people that end up rejecting me, or, give me a ‘part’ of the love (i.e. they love me as a wife or partner, but sexually desire someone else, which hurts so very very much). I understand that my own self-loathing is why my external reality looks like this. But how do you KNOW that someone you are involved with has the same model for love as you, and will not split the pie in two (or 3, or 4…) once you are together?

  10. ko

    hello sen,

    Im in a relationship for years but a few months ago i started chatting with another guy(in us while im in europe).
    First it was only texting but along the way i wanted to hear his voice, so we started chatting.
    We shared a lot, got real intimate and i know he liked me to. But i screwed up because i got extremely needy. I knew it wasnt realistic to leave my family for him and thats what i said from start, hes a lot younger to, but another part of me wanted him so bad. We shared the same interests, especially musicwise and a lot more. Because we both knew it would never become real, he told me he was looking for a girl over there(thats what he called it). One weekend he had a date and ofcourse didnt text me, i totally lost it and kept on texting all kinds of messages. Like didnt it mean anything? i gave you all etc. the first few times he tried to calm me down. Later we decided that we should only be friends forever, but i kept on wanting him a different way. i sometimes deleted all because i felt so bad and thought it would go away. Now we are at a point that he is very distant and doesnt talk at all.

    Can you please give me advise how we can be friends again, cause i really enjoyed talking.
    And i know he did to.
    How can i approach him again?

  11. Bill

    I understand, one cant look to the outside for contentment especially in relationships because you’ll end up feeling needy for that person.. and thus pushing them away… I feel I am getting a great understanding of my own feelings.. but when i see this girl, she creates feelings of excitment, and sexual energy inside me that feels great! how is this possibly a bad thing? Are you sayin with inner balance or stability i will not feel these emotions of joy..shyness.. butterflies anymore??

    1. Sen Post author

      Bill, the state of excitement may feel “good” but its intensity is also capable of blinding you from wisdom – it’s similar to how a few shots of vodka feels great but it can also cause you to indulge in irresponsible behavior. Just because something “feels good” doesn’t mean it’s always a “good thing”, if that was case every junk food in the market would be good for you. The state of balance is about having an inner stability which is not influenced by highs or lows, it starts with the attitude of allowing (without identification/suppression), and it gradually moves into a very “physical” deal of no longer feeling the momentum/intensity of emotions/mind (because the state of allowing causes the imbalances of emotional/mental momentum to ebb away) – this doesn’t mean that you don’t “feel” anything, it just means that you are free of the momentum/intensity of feelings/emotions, which means that you can feel without being overwhelmed by the feeling – this is what allows a state of stability, which is what is conducive to wisdom.

  12. Craig Roberts

    Hi Sen,

    I recently came out of an 8 month relationship that was in some ways warm and connected, but there was also a lot of neediness/expectations that clashed with engulfment and overwhelm. I have had trouble attracting relationships in my life, which I’m starting to think may be due to something like unresolved abandonment issues. This was probably a factor in why the relationship continued so long, as something with commitment has felt so elusive. The relationship ended 4 months ago, and I’ve recently been interested in starting to date again. The issue is that there has been a surprising dearth of opportunity in my reality. People I try to connect with for potential dating are unresponsive, and there seems noone at all in my environment that triggers an interest. Is this a natural expression of an inner world that is still recovering from an emotional separation from my last partner?

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