As human beings, we are interdependent and although someone people can come to the conclusion that they are independent, this is just an illusion. They may well be able to support themselves financially, but they are still reliant on other people paying them money.

This is clearly different to one person being dependent on other people for money. In this instance, it is a one way process and one is not giving anything in return. When one is being paid for what they give, a mutual exchange is taking place.

So this is a sign of that one has developed themselves to a certain degree and can give and receive in this area of their life. To be able to receive through giving is going to make one feel empowered and important.

That is unless they are doing something they don’t enjoy. In this case, even though they are getting paid, they might not feel too empowered about it at the end of each day or the end of the week. In some cases, this might make them want to be paid for doing nothing; as they are so fed up with getting paid for doing what they don’t enjoy.


And while one is interdependent on others when it comes to making money, the same applies to their emotional security. In order for one to feel emotionally secure and centred, it will be important for them to have support around them.

This is generally going to include: friends, family, colleagues and their partner or lover. Each of these people will play and import role in how one feels; with some playing a bigger role than others.

Here one will feel emotionally nurtured and nourished through spending time with these people and having them in their life. And as one is receiving this from others, they will also give this in return.

Give And Take

So this whole process is about giving and taking, it is not one sided. These relationships would be described as being interdependent and not dependent. This means that although ones emotional state is enhanced through being around these people from time to time, it is not completely defined by them.

One still has a sense of emotional autonomy and this allows them to be by themselves and away from people without their being a sense of inner unrest. Unless one is facing some kind of loss instance, then their will naturally be a greater need to have other people around.

A Metaphor

Similarly to how one can have something to eat and once they have eaten, they can go about their day. Food is unlikely to be on their mind once they have eaten, they can focus on the task at hand. After a while, once their hunger returns, they can think about having food and then take the steps to have it. This would be an example of interdependence.

The Absence

When this doesn’t exist, one is going to find it hard to be away from someone or from a certain group of people. So in the case of food, it would be like one eating and then experiencing all kinds of distress until they can eat again. Their mind is then consumed with all kinds of thoughts and the need to eat again will be extremely high.

These persons emotionally state will be completely defined by what is taking place externally. And they won’t have the ability to regulate or sooth themselves from the inside.


Each one of us is going to want to have our own space and to do our own thing and so it is going to be impossible for one to always be around the same person or people all the time.

Space is needed and after a while of being apart, one will want to come together once again. For someone who is emotionally dependent on another, this natural need to separate is going to be a challenge.

The Experience

So to use the example from above: to be away from someone won’t be like eating and then having a break from eating, before eating once again soon after. It will be like eating once and then coming to the conclusion that one won’t ever eat again.

There is naturally going to be a lot of anxiety and fear involved for this person. And along with this could be feeling of being: abandoned, alone, cut off and rejected. As well as feeling powerless, hopeless and that one is going to die.


Now, as one is physically separate and doesn’t need to rely on anyone in particular in order to survive, this whole experience could be confusing. Physically one is no going to die if they are away from someone, but their emotional experience could make them feel as though they are going to die.

So if ones physical age is overlooked and one just takes into account on what is going on emotionally, they will soon see that there is a big difference. What they could see is that they still feel like baby or a small child.


As a baby and for a few years after as a child, one is emotionally dependent on their caregiver/s. The ideal is for one to break away from their caregiver’s and to experience themselves as being physically separate. Through this process taking place, one will develop the ability to manage their emotions.

For this to take place, one will need to have a caregiver who is emotionally aware and in tune. If they are out of touch, there will be greater chance of this process being sabotaged. One common occurrence of having an emotionally cut off caregiver, is that ones emotions will not be regulated or mirrored; either through them being physically or emotionally absent.


When this process doesn’t take place, one is then unable to complete this important part of their development. And when this happens, one can end up being stuck at this stage and will then continue to see others as they saw their caregivers.

It will then be necessary for one to emotionally separate form their caregiver’s as an adult and as they do this, they will be able to maintain an inner balance and a sense of consistency when other people are not around.


The above is just one potential reason as to why one is emotionally dependent. If one still feels like they did as a child when people are not around, then they may have an emotional build up.

So these will need to be released and this can be done with the assistance of a therapist or a healer. And as well as allowing one to release these, they will also receive the mirroring and attunement that they didn’t get growing up. These two elements will allow one to become emotionally separate.

Author's Bio: 

Prolific writer, thought leader and coach, Oliver JR Cooper hails from the United Kingdom. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation; love, partnership, self-love, and inner awareness. With several hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behavior, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice. Current projects include "A Dialogue With The Heart" and "Communication Made Easy."

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