Low self-esteem & constant need to be wanted…help!

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    Stephanie Brooks

    I am 20 years old and a junior in college. I have had 2 serious, long-tern relationships in the past but I have been single for about a year now. There is something in my heart or mind that is telling me that I need a boyfriend in my life in order to be happy. I know that this is not true, however I do have a history of anxiety/depression and I think this is allowing me to think this way. Most of the time I feel as if I need to be longed for or loved/wanted in order to have any substance to my life. I have a great family, many loving and close friends, and I have been provided with many wonderful opportunities in my life; sadly, I do not really think about these things because I am always on the hunt for my soul mate.My self-esteem is shot and my anxiety is through the roof at some points even though I have this amazing life on paper. I am constantly analyzing my self and my life as if it is the only thing I can think about at any moment. I don’t really care to look fashionable but I want to wear things that look flattering on me or else I will be horribly self conscious the entire day and the bad thoughts will tell me that all available men will think I’m ugly. I know I am a beautiful girl because my friends, family, and the number of guys that have been interested in me in the past year have told me so, but my mind will not let me believe it for the most part. I try every minute of my life to soak in the beauty of the day and to appreciate everything, but this negative energy inside is bursting the balloon every time I am somewhat content with my life. The same energy tells me that I need a guy in my life in order to fix all of this, but I honestly have no idea what to think at this point because I have done so much of it.

    Beth Venus

    I can completely relate to how you’ve been feeling, because the feeling that I need a relationship has directed many decisions and a lot of my energy over the past year, and it’s only with the help of tinybuddha that I’ve started to realise that feelings of lack and loneliness are coming from inside and need to be addressed there before a beautiful and loving relationship can be found. Maybe the first place to start is with loving yourself?

    You could start with accepting that you’re allowed to feel beautiful. Perhaps if you let yourself feel beautiful and believe yourself to be beautiful, it will add to feelings of contentment that you sometimes have. Being your own friend means looking in the mirror and saying ‘hey, you look pretty today, and it’s going to be a lovely day’. If you cultivate that kind of practice of self-love, it will help your self-esteem grow, gently bit by bit. And it’ll also make you more receptive to relationships that help cultivate love, both self-love and other-love, in a mutual way.

    Another thing is that, it’s ok to think about love and finding a soulmate or boyfriend a lot. It’d probably help not to beat yourself up about that, because it’s a preoccupation almost everybody experiences quite a lot of the time! 🙂

    Being happy with yourself and being keen to love yourself is probably one of the best gifts you can give to yourself and to a future partner, because it would help them to love you well too. So maybe just try reframing what you’re feeling this way? 🙂

    These are tiny buddha posts you might already have read but that seem helpful to this:




    Good luck and much love


    Hi Stephanie… I am new to this forum and yours was the first post I read… and I could have written it word for word myself… and I am 46!! It (the constant need/want for a partner/boyfriend in my life)… I then read Beth Venus’ reply and found her advice so reassuring especially when she said that it is in fact OK to think about love and finding a soulmate… you know the only one thing worse than the wanting is the beating myself up about wanting!! And I think this is the best advice I have ever read on the subject!! So I for one will start with that one… I think it is a very important step in self compassion and nurturing self esteem! So even though I don’t have any advice for you Stephanie, I would first like to thank you for posting this as it really helped to know I am not going mad and that I am not alone… and neither are you! So I wish you the best on your quest and feel very confident that you will succeed! 🙂


    How is it going? I’m feeling the same way Stephanie, are you still experiencing this? I wonder if it’s hindering my experiences by me making the issue important and making interactions stressful because the possible failure is heightened by the importance.



    I’ll never forget my first love. Of course. Or how she crushed my very soul. It took me a year to get over her. And I’ll never forget the lesson that I learned during that year – that what I loved about her was all a product of my own mind. She wasn’t who I loved at all. Now did we ever think alike, or communicate in truth. I was in love with love.

    My later relationships were more true. Actual communication. Consideration. I looked outside of my own mind. I stopped romanticizing the whole male female thing. While yes I did realize I need a partner in my life to feel complete, I never again made the mistake of thinking that another person is as simple as to be there just for me, or to satisfy my own romantic needs. The other is a partner with whom one can enjoy some comfort when time permits. With my present partner we have always been on odd schedules and never see each other. But we’re happier around each other than around anyone else.

    Sacrifices. I sacrifice easy dating to spend time with the one I care most about. Sacrifices. She and I are nothing alike. We have to discuss things. Sacrifices. There’s no such thing as a soul mate, unless you make one. But don’t bet on such a thing. If your souls mate then that’s it. You will know the truth of it by how much you both are willing to sacrifice to remain together.

    Thanks for reading.

    -=light in extension=-


    PS. The pleasure that we get from sex strokes out catecholamines (dopamine, serotonin, norephinephrine, etc).  We can mistake the pleasure of another’s sexual company for something going on in our soul, when in reality it’s just something going on in our brain.  If one feels deficient in regular life but especially wonderful from another’s attention then that’s probably what it is. Finding a balance to ones own brain chemistry would be a healthier means to accomplish a sustainable lifestyle. Nothing is more unpredictable that another person and relying upon someone else to feel good is the sure way to not feel good. A couple great drugs that don’t fuck up ones sex life include buspirone and selegiline. Proper use of them can increase serotonin and dopamine levels without the lows of other drugs. Check them out. Self work first.

    -=light in extension=-

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