10 Emotional Triggers + Needs That Destroy Relationships!

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Are your emotional needs not being met in marriage? Does your partner often trigger you to feel sadness, anger, and frustration? Consider, they may not be meeting your emotional needs.


Emotional needs are things that we desire to make us feel good and happy. We all enter into relationships with unhealthy needs and expectations. The problem starts when you use control, attachment, guilt, silent treatment, manipulation, gas-lighting, blame-shifting, revenge, etc. to meet those needs. Ultimately, the Single Girl’s Guide To Finding Real Love, highlights filling emotional needs and other strategies to heal toxic dating patterns.

What are emotional triggers? Here is a list of the most common emotional needs and how people use them to destroy their relationships:

  1. To feel wanted or special.     
    • Unhealthy: To be called everyday. You talk to men that compliment you even if you don’t like them or don’t have a good gut feeling. You get mad when your man doesn’t say I love you. Or, he doesn’t show you he loves you in the specific way you want.
    • Healthy: You shouldn’t need a man to feel wanted. Communicate to partner what makes you feel wanted. Learn to do things by yourself and make yourself feel special. Have a tribe of friends that want you and make you feel special. If you need help healing therapy can help a lot.
  2. To feel happy.                  
    • Unhealthy: Want him to make you feel good in many ways. OR, want to make him feel good because you feel great when you make others feel loved. Expect him to make you happy and do everything with you.
    •  Healthy:  Feel happy before a relationship. The relationship will only make your pain worse. It’s hard to work on relationship problems that will pop up when you’re wounded.
    • Related Quiz: Why are you dating the wrong men?
  3. To feel beautiful.             
    • Unhealthy:  To be complimented endlessly. Your man to stay away from every woman. Date unhealthy men so you can get compliments. Date or string along men that you are not attracted to because they give you what you need. You may try to make your man jealous.
    •  Healthy:  Believe your beautiful and be the best and most stunning version of yourself.
  4. To feel safe.                         
    • Unhealthy:  Limit your options of men to a certain height or income. You may test him to see if he’s going to do the right thing. You may be dissatisfied if he isn’t aggressive enough.
    • Healthy:  Take your time getting to know men, pray about it, and don’t rush. His real personality will be revealed. This will help you to choose a man you can trust and feel safe with.
  5. To be provided for financially.       
    • Unhealthy: Your man to make a certain amount. You may date men you don’t like for money. You may stay in abusive situations for money.
    •  Healthy: Be financially independent. Seek the jobs and finances that you want for yourself. His salary is a bonus. 
    • Related Article: 23 Relationships Tips Men Wish Women Knew!
  6. To have sexual desires met.           
    • Unhealthy:  Sleep with random men.  You may focus on only your sexual needs. You may be fixated and disappointed in his sexual moves or size. You may be hard to satisfy in bed. You may love men for the physical and sexual only.
    •  Healthy: Uncontrollable sexual desires occur when you are stressed or not feeling well. Heal and you will be able to manage your desires in a way that doesn’t put you in bad situations.
  7. To feel understood.            
    • Unhealthy: Do things so the other person can feel your pain (revenge/passive-aggressiveness). You may over share your feelings. Call him constantly to talk. Get mad when people don’t read your mind or ask how you are feeling.
    • Healthy: Listen to others. Learn what you want. Communicate it to others. Learn to feel ok or at least not angry with others not understanding you. Also, you must learn to vocalize your needs in a healthy way.
  8. A best friend.                       
    • Unhealthy: Expect him to talk to you everyday. Get mad if he doesn’t want to do things you would do with women. Get mad that you both have different love languages, needs, and sense of what is fun. Get mad if he doesn’t travel with you. Guilt people to do what you want them to. You might try to rush to make the relationship more than what it is.
    • Healthy:  Your partner might be completely your opposite. You will have to try to like what he likes and vice Vera. Be prepared to be a the best person that tries to love even when it’s hard.
    • Related Article: 6 Keys To Avoid Unhealthy Romantic Expectations
  9. I want to feel better.   
    • Unhealthy: When you want to feel better everything is a drug for you. You may use drugs, people, sex, gossiping, sleeping, anger, avoiding, etc. to deal with the pain.
    • Healthy: Learn healthy ways to deal with pain such as picking up a hobby, exercising, get therapy, etc.
  10. To have a relationship.      
    • Unhealthy: You may jump into unhealthy relationships and have unrealistic expectation. Do you have a false belief that your relationship will be perfect and he won’t ever hurt you?
    • Healthy: Have a realistic expectation that you are getting to know an imperfect human that is getting to know themselves too. There will be challenges in life and you both will act in ways that will shock each other. To learn how to be a good partner learn how to heal and give others room to heal.
    • Related Article: What is a toxic relationship? What causes toxic relationships?

Most people want to feel good and meet their needs but they won’t do it the right way. Will you? Want help navigating this? Sign up for your First 20 Minutes Free: 1:1 Empowerment Coaching!

Christina Daniels is the founder of Adorned Heart. She is devoted to learning about human behavior and its affects on society. She received a B.A. in Psychology and M.A. in Public Policy. She hopes to use her life and academic experience to empower & heal the hearts of women!

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