What Episode 20 Is About:
There are times when we can’t lean on our partners to get what we need in our marriage.
It could be something external like increased work hours or internal like his desire to have more time alone to himself.
If you want to start being emotionally independent in a relationship because your husband doesn’t listen to or care about your needs then this episode is for you.
Tune in to learn how to meet your own emotional needs so that you’re not an emotionally dependent wife.
Stop waiting for your partner to make you happy, listen to this episode to practice some self-care in your marriage today.
- How to not be emotionally dependent on your partner
- How to take care of yourself as a woman
- How to be an independent woman in a marriage
- Self-love in marriage
- How codependency ruins relationships
Natasha: Welcome to another episode of the Awakened Wife podcast. I’m Natasha Koo—
Jachym: And I’m Jachym Jerie, and we are from your exceptional relationship dot com.
Natasha: On episode 20, which this is, we’re going to be answering how you can meet your own emotional needs because maybe your husband is emotionally unavailable or he’s just not capable of meeting your needs right at this moment.
Jachym: Yup. Or he’s not capable of meeting all of your emotional needs, which is very normal.
Natasha: So let’s go into it because we have lots to share. In the last episode, it was your man cave.
Jachym: Mm-hmm. That’s right. All right. And in this episode, we are looking at that. And, of course, we always want to look at where is this, uh, the question coming from? And so one of the questions that come with it is, are you an emotionally dependent wife? Well, what is an emotionally dependent wife? We all have our own dependence to a certain degree and reliance of some onto someone else. Like you rely on them, it’s good that you can go for emotional support, ask for advice, ask for input. That’s very normal. But there’s a difference between that and going to the degree where it becomes constant.
Like you need constant reassurance from the other person. The other person is always there helping you with processing your emotions. Then that is unhealthy and you become an emotionally dependent wife, which is really not good because it will take a toll on your husband. It will take a toll on your relationship. The best relationship you can have is an interdependent relationship, meaning you acknowledge that you’re self-sufficient and you have the capacity inside of you to take care of your emotions, to take care of your emotional needs. And at the same time, you recognize how beautiful it is and useful it is to have someone else there and to share that with them so that you are recognizing that there’s an interdependence but is not a codependence.
Natasha: And this is really key because we sometimes can get really confused when it comes to relationships. And it is a sliding scale. You know, it’s not always quite black and white. And there are varying degrees in which you can be very dependent on someone or when it comes to interdependency and things like that.
Jachym: Yeah. I mean, being an emotionally dependent wife in the context that we are defining it here, almost means that you’re emotionally immature, right. You don’t have the capacity to be with your emotions, to hold your emotions, and to let those emotions process. You need someone else there to help you with that constantly. It’s a different thing where it’s very intense and it happens once you know or, you know, once a while when you’re going through a very challenging situation versus it being constantly there and you’re constantly looking for your husband to do that. And that’s a big strain.
Natasha: Yeah. And I think this is the emotional part, the emphasis that we want to have here because we’re not talking about being reliant in any other way. We’re talking about your emotional state. And it can go almost in the reverse way because we’re right now talking about well, two episodes ago we were talking about feeling needy and feeling like, oh, well, actually, I need him. And this urgency, this desperation. And it does relate to this, too, because especially if you’re coming from a very emotional place, it’s as if you are looking to one source or one person, your partner, in this case, to make you feel all right.
So it almost is like looking at like a young infant who cannot quite self soothe or self-regulate and constantly needs this emotional or physical whatever, nurturing and pampering and attention and, you know, this kind of effort and time and constant, you know, being there in order for the infant to feel safe and to feel OK. So, this is really important because depending on where you are and your independence or not, um, this could create an extremely toxic situation where you give away a lot of that power.
And you’re at a loss because you depend on your partner emotionally so much that you literally feel like you can’t quite sustain yourself or that you’re helpless otherwise. And that’s not, um, a good place to be. So that’s why we want to address this, because, like I said, there are varying degrees within, um, that neediness or desperation that we talked about, um, two episodes or so ago. So it is something we have to navigate actually within ourselves. It’s a growing process within ourselves.
Jachym: Absolutely. But we don’t want to go to the point where you’re like, well, I’m completely independent because again, then we’re together in a relationship. But you do want to have this kind of balance between those two.
Natasha: So then the question really is, how do you become emotionally independent when it comes to your partner? Like you said, you don’t want to be completely cut off and like, we’re not here to be psychopaths with each other and not be emotionally influenced by what happens within the relationship. I mean, that’s human. That’s normal. But can we be more emotionally, uh, more independent?
Jachym: Right. Especially or self-reliant. And how do you do that?
Jachym: Right. So, when it comes to this topic, the very first thing is to actually notice that emotion when it comes, it is coming and it is going. When an emotion comes, it can feel like it’s always going to stay there. And it is this intensity that can make us feel like, oh, I can’t handle it. Right. That is one thing. The other thing is that there’s a belief that I’m not capable. Right? I can’t handle it. Please help me. Well, why do you need help? Because I feel I can’t do it. So, questioning this, though, is the belief and the phenomena of experiencing an emotion and letting it calm and letting it pass is what is at the heart to start untangling this emotional dependence and to start realizing actually, no matter how strong the emotion is, it comes and it goes. And there’s a story on top of it. Well, I need your help, but if I don’t buy into this story, the emotion is still going to pass.
Natasha: I think that most people believe that if they’re going through something, um, emotional, if something hurts or something is uncomfortable, they’re actually going to get hurt from it. Do you know what I mean? Almost like a physical wound or physical injury. If they feel like if they go there and they feel something that doesn’t feel nice, they’re going to get hurt. Like not I’m going to feel the feeling of being hurt or emotionally feeling hurt, but like I will be hurt myself. I will be injured almost.
Jachym: Right. Right. So, you want to look at it and you can do that by yourself. You can look at what is the process that is happening within me that makes me have this urge to reach out and get this assurance. If it’s assurance again, then these insecurities. I need assurance that I’m good enough so I’m going to ping you and you tell me or show me in some way that I’m OK. So, if that’s the case, then you want to look at the insecurity. What is the story like? What’s so bad about you? How are you so worthless?
Because here’s the thing and this is true and you can validate it yourself. All those insecurities only ever live in your mind. Yes, it can be a physical reaction to it, but there is a story that is in that insecurity. You take you take the story away, you’re fine. Now, sometimes the story’s a bit hidden, it’s under the conscious radar, and it’s just a general sense of not feeling OK, but there’s still a mind component in there that’s contributing to that. And you want to look at that and start untangling that because it’s a story, it’s not truth. They are two different things.
Natasha: And another way of looking at this that can help you to become more emotionally deep in independent is, um, to know that when you keep going to your partner for reassurance, even though maybe at the back of your head you think like, oh, he can always make me feel better or I need him to be this for me, it might not always work, you know. So, for example, um, you often go to him and when you don’t feel well and the tendency is that you maybe complain about the issue or just need to get it out there. So, you just talk and talk and talk and, uh, you feel better. For example, maybe that’s your method, or maybe it’s like, oh, I’m not feeling good. Hold me. You need some physical touch or physical intimacy to feel safe and feel OK.
Whatever thing that you find most comfort in or how you mostly get reassurance from him, um, from the actions that you need. Um, maybe it works the majority of the time, but then you might also notice that there are times where you ask for that and he’s doing exactly what you want him to and you don’t feel better. He’s not taking the emotional pain or whatever suffering away from you. And that’s important to notice because it means that your partner isn’t a magic pill for your well-being. It means that just because you think he gives you those good feelings or better, more comfortable feeling soothing feelings, whatever you want to call it doesn’t mean that it’s him giving it to you every time. Otherwise, it would always work. You know, every time you’d be held, almost all your problems would go away and then you’d be you feel fine. But that’s not true. You can still be held and be in your head and be worried and, you know, in a turmoil, emotional turmoil. You could speak to him and voice all these things and complain and air it out and for him to listen. And then you still don’t feel good afterward. So, you know, when you are dependent on your partner. So, you think actually, it’s he might not be that magic pill that works every time.
Jachym: Right. And the funny thing is, is that people then make up a reason why it didn’t work this time. Oh, he just didn’t look quite right, or didn’t he didn’t hold me just tight enough or something like that. But it’s based on this erroneous belief that he can make you feel a certain way.
Jachym: And just in general, I mean, look, your experience is internally generated. And that’s true. Like your experiences internally generated. You can feel happy without a reason, you can feel sad without a reason, but we have an obsession creating stories about why I’m happy, why I’m sad, and what will make me feel better. But all it is, it’s an elaborate story. Now, if it works and it’s in somewhat of a healthy way or it has healthy boundaries. There’s nothing wrong with it. And if it becomes to the point where it’s you’re emotionally dependent on someone, you really have just lost your way and you’re misattributing your well-being outside of you, and that’s just not how it works.
Natasha: Yeah, I’ve actually experienced the reverse where it wasn’t that I was, how to say it? Like if I didn’t feel well, I would always come to you to make me feel better. It was the other way where I and this goes to show that I was emotionally dependent upon you. And this has to do with kind of how I grew up, childhood conditioning, that kind of thing, where I, I became very absorbent as a child to other people’s emotions. And if there was some instability in other people’s feelings and emotions, I would try to solve it. So, this kind of came into our relationship when we were dating, where if you had a bad day, I could not handle your mood being anything but good. So, I would take it on myself, believing that I could somehow be responsible, be able to change, be able to soothe, be able to make you feel better. That your well-being was somehow in my hands. Um, because I don’t know why I thought I had that power, but I thought I did. And so if you had a bad day, I cannot be with that feeling like even though it wasn’t me not feeling well, seeing you not feeling well, I was so emotionally kind of dependent upon your mood to be OK that I couldn’t be OK without you being OK. So then I would do everything in my power to, like, cheer you up, make you feel better. Um, you know, do all those things. And that didn’t work because you were going through your own stuff, you recover.
Jachym: It’s usually made it worse, right?
Natasha: Yeah. You recover however you do. You know, when I saw that trying to cheer you up didn’t work, I like to play the bad cop. I was like kind of like kick you around and be like, oh, come on, get over it. Like why are you down in the dumps or something to be sad about. Like I then I would kind of like change strategies and try to like, like kind of like, you know, bad cop wise to make you kind of perk up again. But then you’re like what I like. And I could see that you were kind of frustrated with me because you were already in a bad place or bad mood or mental state or whatever it was.
And then like first I’m acting crazy trying to make you feel better. That didn’t work. And then I’m acting crazy, trying to push you to be like, come on, get over yourself. And you’re like, leave me alone. Can’t you just leave me alone and let me be with my own emotions? Right. Because if someone was OK with their emotions, which you were actually. You were fine being down in the dumpster for a little while, you wanted to recover. You wanted to feel it, you know, acknowledge it and then move on. But I was not letting you do that. I was like, now you can’t be unhappy. You can’t be not OK. And I was trying to force this upon you. And this is the exact thing that you’re trying to do. But with your partner to yourself, you’re not feeling well, you know, you feel dependent upon him.
So you’re trying to make him do all these things that he can cheer you up and then change your mood. It’s the same thing. But is it really in his power? Is it really his responsibility, um, your whole wellbeing or your emotional state in this case? Yeah. He actually took responsibility for his emotional state, what he was going through. And I was actually meddling with it, uninvited actually. And in this case, where we’re actually trying to help you to become more emotionally independent, we’re saying, OK, if there are these patterns that are running like I used to do with Yadkin, you got to take a look at what you currently do to try to mask all these feelings that you can’t handle yourself.
Jachym: Absolutely. And so, one clue that, you know, maybe your emotional dependence is not really action. Your husband is just a misattribution that you’re making, is that it’s not always working. Another one that you can see is the point I was making, that it’s internally generated. You can just think of your husband and you can think of what he’s doing that usually makes you feel well. And lo and behold, you’re going to have some kind of effect there. Well, he’s not here. You’re thinking about it. You visualizing it. It’s internally generated and it’s the same thing, you know, you’re making meaning of what’s happening around you the whole time. You’re attributing to sensations that you’re feeling meaning so, in your body, you have a tightness. You call that something, you can call it anxiety, you can call it anger. You attribute certain meaning to those body sensations and you’re attributing meaning to situations. Oh, well, he looked this way so that means he’s angry. And sometimes you’re right and sometimes you’re wrong because you’re just attributing it. So, what you’re dealing with is you’re dealing with your own map of reality. You’re not dealing with the reality itself. And what you’re experiencing is that internal reality that’s generated from within.
Natasha: Yeah, and we’re covering a lot here. And if you kind of want to slow down, we kind of re-listen or re-read what we’ve been talking about there. Make sure that you check our show notes, which is at your exceptional relationship dot com forward slash 20.
Jachym: That’s right.
Natasha: Two Zero.
Jachym: Let’s go on then. OK, how can you cover your own emotional needs? It’s great to look at, you know, whether you’re emotionally dependent, if you’re emotionally dependent, of course, you want to address that. However, if you are, you know, you have certain independence or self-reliance, there still can be this kind of thing where it’s like, I don’t really know what to do. I don’t understand myself. I don’t know how to deal with myself. I feel unhappy. There is something not right. I’m not really getting my needs met. My husband is not in the space to meet those needs. So, what do I do?
Natasha: I think I was in this space, I think when we first started our relationship, I told you, like, I’m quite scared that I’ll scare you off because I feel like I’m a needy type. I think some people actually identify like I am the needy type. Or in terms of attachment style, I’m a bit anxious attachment style. So, I actually grew from how I guess I was at the beginning when we first dated because, to be honest, back then I was like I said, the example I just gave in this episode already, I was very much emotionally dependent upon your mood, your state, your well-being, how you were doing, what you were doing for me, you know, and had to learn this process.
And it does have to do with, um, emotional maturity. Has to do with– Actually, acknowledging yourself for you, not just acknowledging your emotions so you can identify, OK, what’s that need? OK. I’m going to go to my husband and communicate to him. And two episodes ago, I learned how to do that without appearing needy. OK, here’s the game plan. I’m going to get my needs met or you know, that’s not the point. So, we’re pointing now at how can you help yourself? So, you’re a full woman on your own? Um, because even though we might be very successful on the job, we’re very successful at work or in our social, um, life, whatever it might be, there might still be blind spots that we feel that we can’t do for ourselves and that certain things we absolutely need our partner for.
And that’s why they’re there to give this to us. And we’ll never be able to do this for ourselves. But that’s not true. And I think this is also one of the reasons why within the Cherished Wife program, our coaching program, we teach that pillar, which is Unleash Your Inner Goddess because a lot of women have to learn later in life as an adult how to actually respect herself, how to actually treat herself well and give herself what she needs. Because we so many women are kind of brought up in a way where we keep giving to other people. And in a relationship, we start to play this role, but we never really know how to just take care of ourselves.
Jachym: Mhm. Absolutely. So, you know, when it comes to when you kind of covered this when it comes to meeting your own emotional needs, you have to take ownership of your needs. That’s the very first thing that the second thing is, is that you don’t have just your husband. You have work at a social life. Your family of, you know, you usually are integrated in society in some way. So when you look at, OK, what are my emotional needs? Well, sometimes you want to support and your husband is not there to support you. He’s busy doing something else. Well, call up a friend and be like, look, I just need a listening ear. Do you have some time?
You can actually by taking ownership, you can find other outlets that you can meet those needs that aren’t being met through your husband because your husband can’t meet all your needs. How should he meet all your needs? He’s not your girlfriend. He’s your husband. He’s not your father. He’s your husband. They all have different roles and those different roles fulfill different needs. And so, one thing I suggest, especially if you’re emotionally dependent or codependent if your husband is that your circle of people has shrunk, right? So you’re seeing less friends, you’re seeing less people, and you are trying to meet more and more of those needs through your partner.
Well. Stop and start expanding it. Get a hobby, you know, meet people, make some friends, reconnect with old friends and you’ll see that there is a different flavor of energy and needs that are being met through those interactions. And that actually means, you know, get off Facebook and Instagram and actually have in-person quality time with people. And you’ll see that this task of meeting your own needs isn’t such a daunting task. It’s not this humongous task that you can only, you know, accomplish by sitting in a cave. No, you can be very practical with it and just see other people that can help with those needs.
Natasha: Yeah. And one thing is to actually identify where you currently go-to for comfort. So one might be if you’re emotionally dependent on your partner, it might be your partner, you know, so every time you feel sad, you call him up. Every time something happens, you text him or you know, you’re like, oh, you got to be there for me tonight because, you know, it’s like you go to. For some people, it’s not the partner, it’s food or Netflix. It’s that trigger point where you don’t feel quite OK. And instead of going into that feeling and understanding it, acknowledging it and like feeling it for you, because it’s there, it’s in your body, it’s in your experience.
Instead of experience that fully you go to the first comfort or its first distraction thing that you tend to go towards. So, it’s also really important to notice that pattern because you can have more friends if you choose to. You can have more hobbies if you want to, you know, but if you keep going down that same path to the same comfort things that you automatically just hit whenever you don’t feel well is going to keep going. So first you have to notice, what do I do? What do I say to my husband, what I do every time I get upset? What like how do I turn to him for help? And because by looking at that behavior, which could be learned and unlearned, of course, um, you actually see what it is that you’re trying to either gain or get away from.
Jachym: That’s right. I think this is so vital and it’s not talked about enough. There’s always the standard advice, which is what I was giving as well, of, you know, finding your ways of comfort and soothing and self-soothing and other people and all of this. And that has its place. And it is not necessarily going to lead to growth like you want to actually be with those emotions and be like, OK, so I really feel like I need some support. But I know this pattern. I have noticed it. I’ve observed it. It’s always repeating X, Y, Z happens, I’m screaming for help and running for help. What if I don’t do this? I’m not going to give it in and I’m going to be there fully for this emotion with that discomfort in myself. And I’m going to feel it and investigate it. And that’s when actual transformation can come and you can become more and more at peace in all different kinds of situations. Rather than being dependent on all kinds of circumstances to align, you actually learn to navigate your inner world and deal with those things in a gentle and loving, and compassionate way.
Natasha: Yeah, I think that’s step one. And then step two is what you mentioned earlier, which is OK now that you understand and feel what’s going on inside, what do you actually need? How can you actually take care of yourself? In the first part, you already did start taking care of yourself by feeling it. But then step two is like, OK, if your partner, in this case, you know, is not available to help you or you don’t want to depend on him again and again and again in the same way, because, you know, it’s become just a habit, you know, what do you actually need? What would actually help?
And you might be surprised because you’re stepping out of your comfort zone most likely. Then you might want to do something new, adventurous, or it might just be like, OK, I need to relax. But it might not necessarily be that type of relaxation which I have associated with my husband, which is the glass of wine and Netflix, you know, the evening away. Yeah, right. It might be like, OK, I actually need to go to some maybe a Thai massage or a chiropractor, something that physically helps me to relax, because I know this is not just a sensation. I have something on my back, whatever. You can actually open up the solution box to what it is that you truly need versus that go mechanism of comfort.
Jachym: Yeah, I think this is good. And I believe it depends on your intention. So one way is to find different solutions and to open up new ways of meeting your needs by being with yourself first and then going in. So, stepping away from the reactivity. And there’s another way of actually being like, well, I am not going to meet that need. I’m going to frustrate the response. I’m not going to find a new solution. I’m just going to be with it because I don’t want to be driven by it anymore. Now, this is not a psychopathic way of going about and denying yourself it is a genuine way of looking at, OK, what happens when I don’t have those comfort things? How can I be with myself fully without trying to avoid and try just to see things that way?
Natasha: Yeah, what am I trying to get away from? What I’m trying to hide from.
Jachym: Exactly. And that now that’s very, very deep territory that we are entering here, which is going beyond the scope of this episode because you’re not just looking to meet your emotional needs. You’re also looking at transcending some of them. Which is a big thing. So, and that takes real commitment from your side to be like, OK, I’m going to go in and I’m going to really pick apart those different processes and look at them.
Natasha: So I want to definitely bring up the fact that even though you touched on a very deep spiritual self-growth type of, um, I guess avenue that this whole thing can go towards because it has to do with your emotions, has to do with your emotional stability, your ability to be with yourself, to be OK with a human experience that you’re experiencing. Right. So that’s one bit. But to bring it back to relationships and the wives listening, I mean, this question I like, it sounds like, OK, how do I cope, how do I, um, you know, become less and less dependent upon him emotionally?
What a question of like, oh, am I emotionally dependent wife or what can I do to take care of it myself? All of these things, it sounds like you’re just addressing, um, the issue that, you know, he’s not available maybe emotionally and he’s not capable of meeting your needs right now. So what can you do? It’s kind of like how can I cope kind of angle. But there’s so much more to this, Actually, if you really address this problem in a big way, it can completely change your relationship because there’s nothing better for a husband than having a wife, a woman who is OK within herself, who is not trying to run from her human experience or emotions or something that has happened at work or she’s not busy, you know, resisting all these emotions and trying to get away from it and trying to come to you every time life gets a bit tough. Yes, the man wants to be a hero, wants to be strong, wants a guide, he wants to lead you, but he doesn’t want that is a damsel in distress. Was it a damsel?
Jachym: Think so.
Natasha: Yeah, so that girl, that little girl who can be OK or who is not emotionally OK. Do you know what I mean? And I’m not bringing down anyone who has an actual psychological diagnosis, you know, like where you are mentally struggling with something, a mental illness, whatever it might be. Hey, that’s something you’re going through. And that’s completely OK. But I’m talking about generally in relationships, most men don’t want a wife who constantly comes to him as the solution to all problems in life. Yeah. You know, so when you are able to emotionally take care of yourself as best you can, even if you have a mental disorder, whatever it may be, but if you can take ownership of what’s happening in your own life and you do your best to find that healthy place within you, whatever that means for you and you’re and you don’t run away and not all these fears of all these experiences and emotions that you can have, your man can actually relax and be like, OK, now I can be I can be with you just by being me. I can support you by being me because I want to, not because I’m constantly needed as his life vests every single time you hit a little bump on the road.
Jachym: Yeah, I think it really can take a lot of strain away from relationships who have this dynamic unfolding. And in many ways, again, we come back to what we shared before is that there’s a belief that you are incapable or powerless and that you need someone to step in to do it for you. And that’s a lie. That’s not true. You are capable and you’re powerful and you can work with it and you can learn to be with it and you can see through the illusions that the mind creates and find back to the peace and the love that you actually are. And in the you know, in that space, from that space of peace and love, while you’re joyous and then it’s a joy to be around you and so many things and change in the relationship.
Natasha: Yeah, and that’s exactly what we are trying to point you towards. And with every woman who joins our Cherished Wife program, this is where we’re guiding her to, because, as you know, not all men, not all husbands want to go on this transformative journey with you. He might not be ready. He’s not quite there yet or he doesn’t even see the point that you’re trying to make. He doesn’t he’s just not on board with the problems that you actually have identified in your relationship. And that’s OK. You know, but just through this conversation, I hope it goes to show just how much power we actually do have in a relationship to turn it around, because a lot of the stuff that’s going on inside, we can shift it completely. And these patterns that we talked about, actually, this whole episode we were talking about, more like the woman or the wife’s contribution, how she’s reacting, how she’s dealing with her emotions, her dependency on him.
Jachym: Absolutely, but it goes both ways, right? The you know, sometimes people think, well, is it just the wife? Well, no, it applies to any partner who has this kind of dependency on the other partner and. Focusing on yourself is where the power lies. As long as you keep the blame game going, well, he’s the one who has to change. Well, he has to come with me to counseling or do that. You are going down a road of disempowerment- off a road that is not going to change things. When you stop that and you start just acknowledging where you’re at, what you’re doing, and what you can change, the relationship will change because you’re not part of that dynamic anymore.
Natasha: Yeah, we actually have a wonderful blueprint. It’s the irresistible wife blueprint and it does break down. You know, how you can actually be this woman who’s full, who’s happy inside, who is able to take care of herself. And it does touch on this topic that we’re talking about. So, if you want to get your hands on that for free, head over to the show notes, which is your exceptional relationship dot com forward slash twenty so to zero.
Jachym: Awesome. Well, it was a pleasure to have you onboard today. In the next episode, we are going to talk about what to do when there’s a lack of emotional support from your husband and how you can transform that into love. So that’s going to be an interesting one.
Natasha: All right. Until then. take care.
Jachym: Take care. Bye-bye.