Do you crave love? Craving love is a form of emotional hunger that indicates emotional emptiness and an absence of self-love. This is often caused by a lack of affection during childhood.
Why we crave love
Most of us tend to confuse our need for love with emotional hunger. But this hunger is not a need for love. Love is something we share with others driven by our own self-love and compassion. However, when you seek to love to fulfill yourself, then it is simply a strong emotional need that makes you engage in desperate behaviors and actions to fill your inner void. This hunger for love is a result of deprivation, abandonment, unhealthy attachment patterns, and lack of affection during your childhood. It is an instinctive condition of longing based firmly on emotional pain. Psychologist and author Robert W. Firestone, Ph.D., explains “Hunger is a powerful emotion, which is both exploitive and destructive to others when it is acted out. People identify this feeling with love and mistakenly associate these longings with genuine affection.”
Emotional craving can be a deep and painful feeling that significantly affects your self-esteem. You may feel like no one loves you which makes you constantly reach out to others for affection and external validation. However, this emptiness inside is not caused by a lack of a loving partner or family. This primarily is a result of not loving yourself enough. Due to this confusion between self-love and emotional hunger, you tend to get desperate for love from others, get entangled in unhealthy relationships, and become incapable of leaving toxic relationships.
Signs of emotional hunger
Are you someone who craves love all the time? Here are a few striking features of people who crave love that you need to watch out for:
1. They’re obsessed about love
If you are an emotionally hungry person, then it is likely that you value love a lot more than you should. “People who crave love put huge importance on affection. They may even think nothing else matters,” explains ExploringYourMind. Hence, when they receive any attention or affection from someone then tend to get obsessed about them and become clingy. Receiving affection can lead to anxiety as they have trouble accepting and letting go of love in a natural way.
2. They manipulate others
A person who craves affection can often be controlling and manipulative. Emotional hunger can make someone become possessive about people who love and care about them. Although they may not have any negative intentions nor do they wish to dominate the other person, they do this out of their own anxieties, fear and insecurities. They believe that by controlling the other person, they can keep the relationship going and avoid betrayal and abandonment. This is usually caused by emotional wounds and unhealthy attachment styles in childhood. Ironically, such behavior often leads to the end of a relationship.
3. They are difficult people
Difficult personalities can often be demanding, reactive, and have trouble controlling their emotions. These types of people constantly demand affection and attention as they have difficulty in accepting healthy attachment styles or genuine love. “They can become very demanding with partners or anyone they have an emotional bond with,” adds ExploringYourMind. They expect love to be perfect and unconditional, which is not realistic. Hence, they are more prone to heartbreaks and disappointments.
4. They are desperate for love
Emotional hunger can not only make people controlling and demanding, it can also make them desperate as well. They cannot bear the pain of losing a loved one as they are incapable of coping with abandonment, rejection, or breakups. They can often beg for love as it is easier for them than dealing with the pain of ending a relationship. They tend to be pushovers and can often become a “doormat” in a toxic relationship. They can bend over backward and ignore their own needs to please their partner and keep the relationship going despite how badly the other person may treat them. People who crave love often feel worthless due to low self-esteem. They believe that affection from their partner gives value to their life.