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How do you assert your wants and desires without being needy?

November 27, 2013

I have a problem where I swing between two sorts of situations.

Say I perceive that I am being disrespected by someone.

If I confront the individual, I always seem to end up coming off as needy. I have made it known that the way this person treats me bothers me, and that intrinsically insinuates that this person has some power over me. Even if I do get the other person's behavior to change, there is always a sense of, "He should have sucked it up." or, "Wow, that guy is sensitive and needy." from the other person.

Alternatively, if I do nothing, I can successfully impart the fact that I am not dis-empowered by anyone external to myself, however these people still end up disrespecting me/don't change their behavior at all.

In an ideal world, I can cut contact with these people, ignore them, and find other company. The problem with this is that a) there are some people that you can't cut contact with abruptly, such as a coworker, wife (If you're married and commited. I am not married), or family and b) this precludes too many people to be an effective social strategy. If I wanted to be a hermit, this wouldn't be a problem, but I am a healthy human being and regular social interaction is, I believe, part of my nature.

Any advice?

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Post Information
Title How do you assert your wants and desires without being needy?
Author BellatorCordis
Upvotes 15
Comments 6
Date November 27, 2013 6:09 PM UTC (9 years ago)
Subreddit /r/askTRP
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/askTRP/how-do-you-assert-your-wants-and-desires-without.138518
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/asktrp/comments/1rl4cd/how_do_you_assert_your_wants_and_desires_without/

[–]dirtyhotthrowaway5 points6 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

Sounds like you're going about asserting yourself needily. Are you having a long, heartfelt conversation about your feelings? Or are you getting straight to the point and not wasting time.

"Hey, remember when you did [whatever]? Don't do it again." Look them in the eye while you say it and take your emotions out of it.

Also, being able to actively confront an issue concisely when it's happening helps not come off as needy.

[–]BellatorCordis[S] 2 points3 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

I'll give it a shot. It seems best too confront these problems immediately.

I also find myself over-explaining things, which probably comes off as pleading or whiney.

I might do better to, as soon as I notice someone disrespecting me, say, "Don't treat me that way." If they try and argue that they didn't mean it that way, etc, I could say that it's not up for discussion.

[–]dirtyhotthrowaway0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

It sounds like you're making a good step, though it would be easier to help you with a specific example.

[–]Manuel_S0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Don't complain, don't explain.

Easy to say, not so much to do.

[–]Invalidity1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Be proactive; whenever you are disrespected, state your feelings firmly and how it won't be tolerated in the future. If it happens again, drop whatever you're doing and leave her.

If you really really can't help but give her a second chance, then only do so on your own terms. If she ever disrespects you again, you have every reason to leave her and not look back.

Real men don't put up with shit that they have control over.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Don't ask them for the "favor" of treating you with respect. Tell them they will treat you with respect. This becomes assertive instead of needy.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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