This week we head into chapter two of the More Than Two questions. Today’s set revolves around needs: What are my needs in relationships? Are they attached to specific people? That is, do I need these things generally, or do I need them just from certain people?
This is something I rarely think too long on. Much like the rest of the world, I need what I need without too much thinking going on. However, now that I am thinking on it, this is what I have.
My General Needs
My needs from romantic partners seem simple on the surface, but they are so much more once you delve into them.
I need to be seen and accepted for who I am, first and foremost; there won’t be a relationship without it. This is not an uncommon thing. I think everyone needs to be able to be themselves without walking on eggshells around the people that they’re with. For me personally, the absence of this one factor makes every other part of a relationship difficult for me, especially the all-important communication. It’s like trying to pretend to be someone else forever. Extremely uncomfortable, to say the least.
I need honesty and transparency in all my relationships. It’s just how I operate, and being told a lie or having things hidden from me makes me question the validity of the relationship. This also means that I need my partners to be their authentic selves. I can’t very well love and accept what I do not know.
Having taken the Love Languages test, I can say with confidence that my primary way to feel loved is touch. It’s not a want; it’s a need. I truly need to be touched. I don’t mean sex necessarily, although that is certainly a factor in some relationships. I mean that I need hugs, cuddles, kisses, that simple slide of a hand across my arm or back, a stroke of my partner’s fingers through my hair. Any touch that conveys caring or concern. I literally don’t sleep well without being held at night. Touch conveys so much that words never could. It tells me that I am welcome and cared for and protected when only words would simply leave me suspicious of their honesty.
I need those words as well, however! Words of affirmation are a close second on my Love Languages test. If a partner barely talks to me, or worse goes for days without doing so, I will get paranoid and neurotic. I need to talk, to communicate. I need to hear that I am loved and wanted. I need to hear what my partners are thinking, feeling, wanting, or needing. Good conversation seems to be a must in general for me. I know that sounds clingy and not very poly, but here is the thing: I don’t expect all of my relationships to be nonstop communication. Although some are, my current and former partners can tell you that as long as you tell me good morning and good night and make some time for me in your life, I am perfectly fine.
What I Need From Certain People
The question of whether I need certain things from certain people seems a ridiculous one to me. Of course I need certain things from certain people. They would not be in my life if they did not offer me something no one else could, something that is uniquely them.
Take my two current partners, for instance. Both are Daddy Doms. From the outside, they sound the same, right? But Daddy and Draggy are two very different men. Daddy is not a gamer, or cuddly, or even a reader in the way that Draggy is, but these are things that I enjoy, and I love having someone to share those things with. Draggy is not the type to go hiking or swimming at the lake with me, but Daddy is. And, y’all, come summertime, I need the lake. Some of our best moments as a couple happen when we are in the middle of nature. See, not the same at all. Yet I love and enjoy them both.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I will have a long term thing with all the people in my life. I won’t. Each person that comes into my world offers their own unique gifts. This is why I don’t believe people can be replaced.
A Bit On the BDSM
I feel like I need to point out something here in regards to BDSM play. I am a strong-willed, feisty woman who knows exactly what she is capable of and what she is worth, but I don’t like to be the one in charge. It makes me feel pushy and selfish and just plain wrong. I am submissive, so I am attracted to Dominant men. I need them in my world. In this way it is something that I need in general.
Each dynamic is different, however. Draggy makes me feel like that starry-eyed girl I once was while Daddy makes me feel completely protected. Both make me feel loved and wanted. Who knows? Another person might make me feel differently.
This is all supposing a romantic commitment, but there are other, less attached, relationships in my chest of possibilities. In those cases, what I need might be exponentially less.
At the End of the Day…
What I need from relationships at the core, the general things that make me feel like I am in a relationship, are so ingrained that I am still discovering exactly what they are. What I need from each partner in turn is largely determined by that partner and what they bring to the table. I could no more tell you what I will need from someone new than I can tell you what the weather will be for certain next August 6. My needs may change in the future; it’s one of the wonders of life that we all change and grow with each passing day, learning more about ourselves. For right now, this is what I know.
So, as always, remember: This is your life; live it your way!