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We all deal with insecurities. Even the most confident of us struggle with anxieties and it’s no different for men.
Some men put on a façade, pretending they aren’t fazed by anything you or anyone else does, but it’s rarely the case.
It can be tough trying to be with a man who is battling his own insecurities, and you should be prepared for the difficulties these anxieties could cause in a relationship.
But you should also believe that, with the right encouragement, you can be a positive influence in helping him deal with them.
Whether you’re dating someone new or you’ve had to live with his insecurities in your relationship for a while, read on to see what to watch out for and tips on how to cope.
7 signs you’re dating an insecure man:
If you’re still in the relatively early days of dating a guy, these are the initial warning signs you might notice that he is quite insecure.
1. He showers you with gifts.
This doesn’t sound so bad right? But a few thoughtful presents are very different to someone trying to buy your affection.
For insecure men, spending a lot of money can be a way of buying your love. When this happens in the extreme, you might start to feel indebted to them because of it and be made to feel guilty for any time you want to spend apart.
This isn’t a healthy start to a relationship. If they’re going over the top with gifts, show them you don’t need to spend a lot to have a good time together. They just need reassurance that it’s them you care about, not their bank balance.
2. He’s rushing things.
As flattering as it is when a man declares his love for you early on, beware of moving too fast.
He might be so insecure about losing you that he’s rushing into becoming too serious too soon in an effort to make you commit.
If he’s talking about your future together and telling you he’s in love, think about whether you even know each other well enough for this to be true.
There is nothing wrong with telling him you want to take things slow. Reassure him you’re interested but take things at your own pace. If it’s right, you’ve got forever, so what’s the rush?
3. He’s jealous of your friends or family.
If a guy you’re dating is making you feel guilty for spending time away from them, or questions your closeness with family or friends, it’s usually because they’re insecure themselves.
He sees other people as competition for your time and attention and will worry you prefer their company to his.
If things between you are going to work, you’re going to need the support and acceptance from friends and family. Pulling away from them for the sake of a man is never going to work in the long run, so find a way to bring them together and show him there’s no need to worry.
4. He’s stalking your social media.
Your social media should not be a tool for the man you’re dating to check up on you.
If he’s commenting on people in your posts or has an obsessive interest in them, he’s most likely insecure you’re having a better time without him and will meet someone else.
His insecurity might even come out as anger toward you for not posting more about the two of you, showing the world that you’re an item.
Hiding things from your social media or editing posts to make him happy isn’t a solution. This will continue to be an issue if you don’t address it, so find a way to deal with his insecurities together while maintaining your independence.
5. He picks fights with you.
He starts an argument with you every time you go for a night out on the town with your friends, convinced you’re out to meet other men.
This is a tactical approach, making you miserable and guilty for the time you spend away so that you eventually stop even trying to go out without him.
It’s manipulative behavior and comes from a need for control because he’s feeling insecure. He might tell you it’s because he loves you and misses you, but wearing someone down through arguments to make them bend to your will is not love.
6. He wants to spend all of your time together.
When you’re dating someone new, it feels like you could spend every moment together. It’s fun and exciting at first until he starts making you feel guilty about time apart.
He’ll start getting annoyed at you for not messaging him back when you’re out, or question why you’d want to spend a weekend away from him. These are signs of his insecurities, not your failings.
Time apart to concentrate on your own social life and interests is healthy for the both of you.
Making each other your only source of happiness puts too much pressure on your relationship. If he’s being clingy, try to find a way to readdress the balance before your relationship crumbles under the strain.
7. He compares himself to your ex.
An insecure man will find it hard to accept any ex of yours, in the fear that they were somehow better than him.
Him taking an abnormal interest in your past relationships or stalking through old pictures of you and your ex are red flags you shouldn’t ignore.
There is no place for a past relationship in a present one. If the man you’re dating is behaving this way, remind him to focus on what you have right now rather than worrying about the past.
5 tips to help you date an insecure man:
If you see more than a few of the above signs and realize that you’re dating an insecure man, here are some things you can do to make things go more smoothly.
1. Build trust.
If a man is already insecure, don’t give him reasons to worry.
Share your plans with him so he doesn’t feel like you’re keeping secrets. Try sending him pictures from your night out so he can feel a part of it and see that you’re thinking about him. If you say you’ll text him when you get home, make sure you do.
Keep showing him his insecurities are unfounded and you’ll begin to build that foundation of trust, essential to a happy relationship.
2. Introduce him to your friends.
If he’s jealous of the time you’re spending with friends, especially male friends, the easiest thing to do is introduce him to them.
If he’s insecure, he’ll be imagining the worst and thinking your friendships are more than they are. Introducing him to your friends will allow him get to know them and see for himself that there’s nothing to worry about.
3. Build his confidence.
Insecurity is often just a lack of confidence.
If he’s putting you on a pedestal, help him to build his own confidence up and reassure him.
Be vocal about all the things you like about him. The more you say nice things about him, the easy he’ll find them to believe.
4. Find out where his insecurities started.
Dating an insecure man often means you’re dealing with the consequences of his past.
It’s unfortunate that you have to suffer the backlash for something that happened to him to break his trust in people, but you can be the one to help him change for the better (though he has to be the one to drive this and it’s not your responsibility if you can’t make it work).
Try to have some open and supportive conversations to find out more about him and when these insecurities started.
With a better understanding of what drives his reactions to things you do, you’ll be able to find solutions to stop them being an issue.
5. Don’t rise to a fight.
It’s difficult not to react when you feel you’re being treated unfairly, especially when you’re suffering because of a man’s insecurities. But the worst thing to do is to let it turn into an argument.
You don’t fight fire with fire, and when you’re dating someone, you need to show them that they can count on you to be there for them through good and bad.
You won’t develop a sense trust if you both react defensively, so try to show him that you are there to listen, work things through, and reassure him that there is no reason to worry.
It will take some serious willpower, but having patience with him and showing him you’re willing to work together will create a stronger relationship going forward.
4 signs you’re in a relationship with someone who’s insecure:
Besides the early signs of insecurities when dating a guy, there are other things to look out for if your relationship is more established.
1. He’s jealous of your success.
Whether it’s your success at work or believing the kids like you more, your partner’s own insecurities could be manifesting as jealously toward you.
You’ll notice that he takes everything personally, even things outside your control, and can’t ever seem to be happy for you.
Generally, it’s not so much about you as it is about him feeling stuck in a rut and lost with his direction in life.
Be the reassurance he needs and help him find the joy in what he has. He’ll start to remember that you’re each other’s biggest cheerleaders, not competitors.
2. He doesn’t respect your privacy.
Once you’ve been in a relationship for a while, the boundaries between what’s yours and his can blur. But this doesn’t mean you aren’t entitled to your own space and privacy when you need it.
If he’s insecure about you leaving him, he may feel as though he’s entitled to go through your phone, your messages, and your emails to check up on you. This is never ok, no matter how long you’ve been together.
If you don’t have trust in each other, you need to evaluate where your future is heading.
3. He thinks you have a hidden agenda.
You can’t seem to do anything right without him thinking you’ve done it to get at him, sound familiar?
If this is happening in your relationship, it could be that your partner is struggling with his own insecurities and ability to achieve.
These insecurities are making him paranoid that you are somehow sabotaging his chances of doing better.
We all know this isn’t the case and he’s looking for someone to blame for his own lack of direction. Encourage him to communicate his feelings and show him you can work together to make a positive change.
4. He’s indecisive.
When we say indecisive, we mean he can’t do a thing without checking with you first.
If he’s leaning too heavily on you for guidance, it could be a sign he’s lost trust in himself to make good decisions.
He might be feeling insecure in his abilities to look after you or your family, and has become too reliant on you being the decision-maker.
This puts more pressure on you to keep everything together, and eventually you’ll crack under this weight of responsibility.
Try to look for ways to rebuild his confidence in himself and encourage his decision-making.
4 tips to having a healthier relationship with him:
If your relationship is suffering because of your boyfriend or husband’s insecurities, here are some ways to address the situation.
1. Encourage his own interests.
Encourage him to spend time exploring his own interests and seeing friends away from you.
Being supportive of this will help him see that it’s ok for you both to have your own space and interests away from each other.
This doesn’t mean you have to live separate lives; it’s about showing that you trust him to spend time away from you so he begins to feel more secure about you doing the same.
You can make each other’s friends and hobbies part of both of your lives. The important thing is that he sees that it’s ok to have your own separate interests because no matter what, it’s each other you choose to come home to at the end of the day.
2. Make quality time for each other.
When you’re in a long term relationship, it’s easy to lose the spark you had while dating as you get bogged down in everyday life.
The loss of that buzz is sometimes what leads a man to feel insecure because he worries that he’s losing you.
Make sure that whatever you have going on, you make time for each other once in a while. Spending a date night together is important to recapture that connection you have and remind each other why you choose to be together.
You don’t have to put on lavish displays of affection; it could be as simple as saying ‘I love you’ more often or making their favorite dinner.
Make sure, despite everything you have going on in your lives, you find time to show that you care and that he’s your number one.
3. Evaluate your own behavior.
Sometimes we forget the affect we have on people, and when a relationship is well established, it’s even easier to forget that you still need to put in the effort with your partner to keep that relationship happy and healthy.
If your partner is acting strangely and letting his insecurities get the better of him, it might be time for you to check in on yourself and see if you are unconsciously contributing to these feelings.
You might have unknowingly been a part of the problem. But after thinking it over, you might find you’ve been criticizing him a lot lately or not being as affectionate as you used to be.
Once you’ve thought about this and realized how you could have contributed to his insecurities, it should be possible for you to find a solution to help make things better.
Acknowledge how you may be making him feel, apologize, and commit to making a positive difference in your relationship going forward.
4. Suggest therapy.
When you feel like you’ve tried everything, you’ve talked things through, you’ve done your best to be as reassuring and supportive as you can, and things still aren’t improving, then it’s time to seek professional help.
Some insecurities are too deeply rooted to be easily fixed just by the both of you. It might take the help of a trained professional to give him a safe, neutral space to be able to talk through the emotions he’s struggling with.
Seeking a professional to help with your relationship doesn’t mean you’ve failed or are on the brink of breaking up. Therapists are trained for situations like these and could give you the helping hand you need to understand each other better.
Insecurities will only mean the end to a relationship if we let them overcome us. How successful your relationship will be depends on how much he’s willing to work on not letting his insecurities get the better of him.
Be supportive, encouraging, and positive. We all have our personal battles to overcome and having an understanding partner is a key part of working through them.
But his insecurities are not solely your responsibility. Only he can get himself to a place where he trusts you and those around you not to emotionally hurt him. You can do your best to help in any way that you can, but ultimately it’s his own battle to fight.
You can try working through this as a couple, but if things don’t change, you should be prepared to give him the time and space to figure things out alone before you can be together.
Still not sure what to do about your insecure boyfriend or husband? Want to talk things through either by yourself or as a couple? Chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out. Simply click here to chat.
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