Psycho-Babble Relationships Thread 618219

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addicted to male attention

Posted by wildflower44 on March 9, 2006, at 23:48:23

I thrive on getting positive male attention. It is like heroin to me. It is such an adrenaline rush and high. I love for men to admire me, want to talk with me, flirt with me, and to say positive things about me. I love the attention. It is like oxygen. Magic. When I have men to flirt and chat with, and men who are admiring me, I'm happy and alive. I'm on. When I don't have that in my life I am depressed and feel like I have nothing to live for. Ya, I get suicidal. I don't have female friends really. I mean, I can chat with a female for a few minutes, but I usually feel anxious and feel like she doesn't really want to be talking with me. I am so pathetic. I don't understand what is wrong with me. I am 44 years old. I am somewhat attractive (okay, I'm beautiful without make up, I hate admitting that). I have been this way since a teenager. Friends have told me: you need to get a hobby. You need to have something else in your life besides men. I have taken up drawing, watercoloring, journal writing, exercise, gardening, home repairs... NOTHING feels as good or is as satisfying and stimulating as having a man around.
I feel hopeless. It is driving me crazy. What is wrong with me?

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by jonquiljo on March 10, 2006, at 2:45:43

In reply to addicted to male attention, posted by wildflower44 on March 9, 2006, at 23:48:23

Ther is absolutely nothing wrong with you. Its a normal human condition. I know how you feel. I'm definitely NOT drop-dead gorgeous, but have always thrived on the attention of women in my wife. It started in grade school. I never had many good male friends (I am a guy), but mostly women.

Unfortunately, when your a guy, most women aren't interested in you (as a guy) after he age of 35-40. So I learned to live with little or no attention.

So, don't feel hopeless - you are not crazy. Are you lonely - perhaps .... only you can answer that one.

 

Re: addicted to male attention Ľ jonquiljo

Posted by wildflower44 on March 10, 2006, at 9:11:02

In reply to Re: addicted to male attention, posted by jonquiljo on March 10, 2006, at 2:45:43

Thanks for your kind words and for responding. When I read your feedback "maybe you are lonely," I felt a tug inside my stomach and felt like I could burst out in tears. So, you may have hit on something:) I have always considered myself fiercly independent. I actually love my time alone and having my own space. But I think I am in huge denial and do not want to look at that word or concept: LONELY. I sounds so needy and ridiculous to me. I know I am supposed to be my own best friend, trust in a loving "HP," and be okay no matter where I am. I believe I should just enjoy my own presence and not need anyone. f--k. No man is an island. I have created myself into an island with inviting shores that are just a facade. Really, my island is a dangerous black hole of loneliness and neediness. oh my gosh. I don't know what to do with this revelation. What do people do? How are you all doing this life thing, people? I feel like I missed some critical lesson in 4th grade one day. Everybody else "got it," but I was absent that day. What did I miss? How can I help myself?

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by jonquiljo on March 10, 2006, at 13:36:44

In reply to Re: addicted to male attention Ľ jonquiljo, posted by wildflower44 on March 10, 2006, at 9:11:02

Wildflower,

I read, and re-read you post many times. You didn't really miss anything. We are all (mostly) dangerous black holes of lonliness and neediness - whether we know it or not. I certainly am. Wanting independence and desiring solitude doesn't mean we don't need people in our lives. You can have both.

Just reach out for people, and - slowly - they will be there in your life when you need them. You didn't miss any lessons in life. It sounds to me like you are just scared. Its natural to shut people out and feel that you are "independent". I know thats what I do.

It sounds like you are young and have lots of time to make your life happy in the way it needs to be - and should be. Denial is a natural thing - moving on from denial is natural as well. It certainly sounds to me like you have all the abilities to move on from here. Most of all - give yourself a break. Needing someone isn't a weakness. I like to look at it as a strength. The best of luck to you - always.

Jon

 

Re: addicted to male attention Ľ wildflower44

Posted by Tamar on March 11, 2006, at 18:44:26

In reply to addicted to male attention, posted by wildflower44 on March 9, 2006, at 23:48:23

> I thrive on getting positive male attention. It is like heroin to me. It is such an adrenaline rush and high. I love for men to admire me, want to talk with me, flirt with me, and to say positive things about me. I love the attention. It is like oxygen. Magic. When I have men to flirt and chat with, and men who are admiring me, I'm happy and alive. I'm on. When I don't have that in my life I am depressed and feel like I have nothing to live for. Ya, I get suicidal. I don't have female friends really. I mean, I can chat with a female for a few minutes, but I usually feel anxious and feel like she doesn't really want to be talking with me. I am so pathetic. I don't understand what is wrong with me. I am 44 years old. I am somewhat attractive (okay, I'm beautiful without make up, I hate admitting that). I have been this way since a teenager. Friends have told me: you need to get a hobby. You need to have something else in your life besides men. I have taken up drawing, watercoloring, journal writing, exercise, gardening, home repairs... NOTHING feels as good or is as satisfying and stimulating as having a man around.

> I feel hopeless. It is driving me crazy. What is wrong with me?

ErÖ Iíd venture to say nothing is wrong with you. You enjoy the attention of men because you are human. Maybe you have quite a high sex driveÖ which is perfectly natural.

You donít mention having a partner, so I wonder whether you get high on the attention but find relationships difficult. If thatís the case youíre not unusual. In fact, itís particularly common in women who have been sexually abused or assaulted, or have other reasons for fearing intimacy with men.

Iím maybe a little more concerned about your feelings towards women. Your feelings of anxiety around women suggest to me that you worry about all kinds of intimacy. I can imagine that if you are very beautiful, you have probably experienced a lot of jealousy from other women. Do you know any gay women? I imagine itís easier to be beautiful among lesbians, because the element of competition is removed: gay women would find you attractive without wanting to compete with you for male attention.

And maybe, once you get used to women, you might be able to forge friendships with straight women.

It all sounds to me as if your primary wish is to be liked. Maybe you find it hard to get feelings of being liked from women (perhaps because you are very attractive), and you thrive on sexual appreciation from men. And yet perhaps you know deep down that sexual appreciation from men isnít the same thing as being liked.

You seem likeable to me. Iím sure you are a nice person. I think the idea of a hobby is a good one; itís much easier to get to know someone who has common interests. Maybe you can learn to enjoy the company of people (male and female) who share your interests.

And Iíd also say that perhaps you might think about what *you* like in other people rather than worrying what they might or might not like about you. I reckon in due course you might find that men are just people; theyíre not a completely different species and they can be friends too!

I hope you find the relationships that will make you happyÖ

Tamar

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by Cici on July 8, 2006, at 15:45:01

In reply to addicted to male attention, posted by wildflower44 on March 9, 2006, at 23:48:23

Wildflower,

Iíve had some painful experience in this area and I admire your insight at facing this as a problem. Most people canít do that until they are in crisis. It is the hardest part, so you already have one foot on the path to a fuller life.

It has been my experience that:

1) Women who need male attention to feel alive often have childhood issues with an unavailable father and a mother who still yearned for his attention or whose standard of living relied on his good opinion. These women are raised to believe that male regard is the only important thing, and losing it was the worst tragedy that ever befell them.

2) Women were sexually abused as children also tend to see their only value to others as sexual, and sexualize their encounters with others (both men and women.) Other women don't envy them so much as mistrust them. Other women may also be put off by if they sense that you do not find women as valuable or interesting as men.

3) If you can't relate to other women, it's hard to embrace your own female (non-sexual) worth.

4) As we age, society offers us a lot less sexual admiration (for women this declining attention is especially rapid), and there will always be someone younger and prettier, so it is vitally important to develop your self-esteem in multiple areas.

4) It's hard for an admiration addict to sustain a normal long-tem relationship. It's scary to put all your eggs in one basket, plus most real relationships pass beyond the "adoration" phase within the first year. At that point, or if there is any type of personal crisis before that, you may feel compelled to seek comfort in admiration from others and risk your relationship.

Relying on someone else to validate you, especially men you don't know well, is a sure road to emotional upset, and addiction to admiration is almost a guarantee for an unfulfilling life.

You need to get professional help to learn to love yourself and see your own value for ALL that you are. How will anyone else see it if you don't? Joining a women-only therapy group might be a good way for you to start.

Best of luck to you, Wildflower,
Cici

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by rfs on September 3, 2006, at 18:01:46

In reply to Re: addicted to male attention, posted by Cici on July 8, 2006, at 15:45:01

> Wildflower,
>
> Iíve had some painful experience in this area and I admire your insight at facing this as a problem. Most people canít do that until they are in crisis. It is the hardest part, so you already have one foot on the path to a fuller life.
>
> It has been my experience that:
>
> 1) Women who need male attention to feel alive often have childhood issues with an unavailable father and a mother who still yearned for his attention or whose standard of living relied on his good opinion. These women are raised to believe that male regard is the only important thing, and losing it was the worst tragedy that ever befell them.
>
> 2) Women were sexually abused as children also tend to see their only value to others as sexual, and sexualize their encounters with others (both men and women.) Other women don't envy them so much as mistrust them. Other women may also be put off by if they sense that you do not find women as valuable or interesting as men.
>
> 3) If you can't relate to other women, it's hard to embrace your own female (non-sexual) worth.
>
> 4) As we age, society offers us a lot less sexual admiration (for women this declining attention is especially rapid), and there will always be someone younger and prettier, so it is vitally important to develop your self-esteem in multiple areas.
>
> 4) It's hard for an admiration addict to sustain a normal long-tem relationship. It's scary to put all your eggs in one basket, plus most real relationships pass beyond the "adoration" phase within the first year. At that point, or if there is any type of personal crisis before that, you may feel compelled to seek comfort in admiration from others and risk your relationship.
>
> Relying on someone else to validate you, especially men you don't know well, is a sure road to emotional upset, and addiction to admiration is almost a guarantee for an unfulfilling life.
>
> You need to get professional help to learn to love yourself and see your own value for ALL that you are. How will anyone else see it if you don't? Joining a women-only therapy group might be a good way for you to start.
>
> Best of luck to you, Wildflower,
> Cici
>
> Hi
I think I have the opposite problem. I grew up with 3 sisters and a mother. Emotionally unavailable father. Always relate to women better then men. seem to have similar feelings I just prefer being around women. I am married many years, have no intention of any outside sexual relationships etc. but I just think deep down I see "all" women as good and kind. And all men as rough and mean etc. I have nade some progress in this are. When I talk to another man about my feelings, very often they open up and share similar feelings. I find that they are not as judgemental as I think.
Ray

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by tinkerbelle06 on September 25, 2008, at 20:32:32

In reply to addicted to male attention, posted by wildflower44 on March 9, 2006, at 23:48:23

I have to say that I didn't even realize an addiction to male attention was a REAL issue until I saw a show called "The Secret Lives of Women" that explored women who were addicted to sex &/or male attention.

I've heard of sex addictions before, but I did not know that some people who are diagnosed as being "sex addicts" are not technically addicted to SEX. What they are addicted to is attention from the opposite sex.

The longer I watched the show, the more I realized this could be me. Now, as far as an addiction to the physical act of having sex, that is most likely not me, since I think I could probably go the rest of my life without it, and I am only 27 years old. I'm supposed to be at my sexual peak right? Let me back track...

There are several reasons I am needy for male attention. My biological father (aka "The Sperm Donor") has never had anything to do with me. My stepfather who raised me was raised as a traditional southern man. He is quiet, reserved, conservative, and he does NOT talk about his feelings. It is not that he is not proud of us. We were brought up in a religious, conservative home. He is just not the type to share his feelings. Then, to really top it off, I was raped when I was 17. So, I already know the reasons why I need male attention. It's just a matter of getting to the point where I don't need it anymore that I'm struggling with.

So, I definitely understand where you're coming from, needing attention from the opposite sex. I'm almost DESPERATE for it. I live for it sometimes. I don't want sex. I just want the attention, to be sought after, to feel sexy.

I'm in a long-term relationship and MOST of my relationships have been long-term, a year or more. The one I'm in now is pushing five years.

Up until recently I had never considered cheating, but this is the longest relationship I've ever been in and it's getting dry. I feel like I'm not appreciated and not found sexy. I think he wants the sex, but that it wouldn't matter if I completely let myself go. He'd still be looking for the sex. He's really cute and at one time he was also very charming, but he's happy with just sex. I need the attention, regardless of the sex.

It seems the only time I'm happy is when I'm getting male attention, which I don't feel I get from my man. I get sex from him, but I don't get the kind of attention I want.

There's not much to do in my small town, so me and my girlfriends like to hit the bars once in a while. When we go, I like to get all "dolled up" because I LOVE the attention. In fact, I get mad when I don't get it. I'll hop from bar to bar until I find the attention I want. I don't like to show too much leg or cleavage, so it's not like I "slut it up" to get the attention. I just try to look pretty.

I'm not gorgeous by any means, but I'm not ugly. I'm 5'1", 130 Lbs, curvy figure, long blonde hair, blue-green eyes, and I have a nice smile and a flirty personality. When you're pretty you don't need to look like a prostitute to get attention. It just helps to look nice.

Over the last two years, I've made it a habit to go out at least once a month, usually twice. For several months straight we went out every weekend. It got to where the bar owners looked forward to my friends and I showing up, because they knew we would improve the business. We became part of the entertainment. We just brought the personality and the fun along with us. We danced together, flirted, got free drinks, and partied it up. We drew a lot of attention. I LOVED it!!! It was the BEST rush for me! It was better than any feeling I'd ever had, better than any drunken feeling, even better than sex itself!

The only thing better than getting the attention was when I could tease the guys giving it to me. I LOVED to get them all rowled up and then leave them hanging, begging for more, another dance, a kiss, anything. I get excited just thinking about it!

At first, it didn't interfere with my relationship. I mostly went out with friends and family that he trusted. So, he didn't worry. He didn't like it, but he didn't worry. Then, I slipped up and he found out how "popular" we were at the local bars. That's when he started worrying a little.

Then, one guy in particular started showing me a lot of attention. This guy had a reputation for being a ladies' man, and he wasn't the type of guy to settle down and get married. He has kids with two different women and he's never been married. He's also a little older than me, in his late 30's. I've always been attracted to older men, especially the rugged, manly type. It gave me an all new high. This guy who could have ANYONE was flirting with me shamelessly, even with my boyfriend only feet away at times. It takes a LOT of gutts to do that, since my boyfriend has some pull in my community. This guy is the optomy of sexiness in my opinion and he was after ME, and he wasn't afraid of what could happen.

My boyfriend is not the rugged type. He's handsome and strong, but he's not a hunter, a sportsman, or a laborer. He's more of a "man in charge" type, but he doesn't really get his hands dirty, and he's quite a bit younger than me. So, this new guy was exactly the opposite of my boyfriend, and he TOTALLY turns me on.

He became my new secret project. I tracked him down and asked him what his intentions were with me. He admitted having an affair before and said he was not afraid to go after anything he wanted. I asked him if he wanted me. He asked if me and my man were married. We weren't, so he said he'd get in touch with me if he ever wanted to hook up. The first time we "hooked up", we kissed. Well, we started to and we bumped teeth. Then, he said, "If you're gonna do it, do it right." That turned me on SO MUCH, because he took control, held me tight, and kissed me the way HE wanted to kiss me, not the way I asked him to kiss me.

Since then, we have hung out several times. We're not having sex. We just flirt & hang out. He knows I get more sex than I already want from my boyfriend. We just enjoy hanging out and it's the "idea" that something "could" happen that keeps me coming back.

I'm completely happy with the way things are, except I feel guilty hiding it from my boyfriend. I love the attention I'm getting from this guy and it makes me feel complete. I get the attention from him and the love from my boyfriend.

Even if I break it off with this guy and tell my boyfriend after the fact, I know he'll leave me. So, he can NEVER find out. I CAN'T lose my boyfriend. I love him. I just wish he were more manly, could take more control from time to time. I think he depends on me for too much, especially when it comes to making decisions about HIS life. I think he's kind of a "mama's boy" and sometimes I just want him to grab me and kiss me hard and long. Sometimes, I want him to tell his friends how hot I am. I want him to look at sexy pictures of me and, instead of asking who else has seen them (when he knows no one has),I want him to say, "Damn, you're sexy". Sometimes, I want him to throw me down and take CONTROL instead of asking me how I want to "do it".

I want a MAN, not a little boy! I want attention like other men give me and I'm afraid my desperate need for this attention will cause me to lose my boyfriend and to never settle down and have children like I desperately want. I almost feel like I have to choose between the life I want and my addiction.

This addiction has cost me relationships before. I've hopped from boyfriend to boyfriend with very few breaks in between. I've been known to break up with one boyfriend only to move on to a new one within months, weeks, or even days. That's because a lot of these guys that were showing me the attention I wanted were looking for a relationship when I was just hungry for the ATTENTION they offered me. Once the relationship matured and I began getting less attention, I got frustrated with the relationship and started acting out toward my boyfriends. Then, they would get mad at me for lashing out and leave me, or I would get tired of waiting for them to break up with me and I would break it off.

I don't know what to do. I can't afford therapy and my boyfriend doesn't want me going to someone else about our problems. I have not even admitted to him that my addiction is the problem. He thinks I've just lost my sex drive for one reason or another. I even stopped taking my birth control pills because I thought a hormone embalance was the cause.

Now I realize it was just that I needed male attention. When I get it, I get excited and then I come home and don't mind having sex with my boyfriend so much. I don't really need it, but my excitement makes it a little easier. So, I feel that this attention from this other guy has actually HELPED my sex life with my boyfriend. How strange is that?

The thing is, I know I can't keep living this charade. I need to either get over this addiction or get the attention I so desperately need from my boyfriend somehow. I just LOVE my sex life right now. How do I continue to love my life and not hurt my boyfriend in the process?

What do I do?

 

Re: addicted to male attention

Posted by kposs75 on December 24, 2008, at 9:39:22

In reply to Re: addicted to male attention, posted by tinkerbelle06 on September 25, 2008, at 20:32:32

OMG, I am glad I found this. I have been wondering if I have an addiction to male attention too and I am sure I do. I look back to my teen years and was totally like you describe. Loving the male attention to the point that the attention part is all I really wanted. I would eat it up BIG TIME. I'd do stupid things to get it and to keep it even though I kept knowing it was very hollow, but I just HAD to have it. I wanted to get as many guys wound up as I could and did not care if anything came of it, just as long as I got that attention regarding my looks and made them want me BAD.

Now I am struggling again. It went away for a while and I have been married for 5 years, with the guy for a total of 11 years. I had some health probs and also some jealously stuff to overcome so that kept me focused on him only for a long time. Problem is, I have distanced from him this past year and my addiction is BACK in FULL FORCE now and it is causing me major problems. I am feeling very mad at myself right now and totally feel like I am losing control of my ability to respect myself. I ended up getting involved with an older man who is NOT available and I think he cares about me genuinely but we are not really "together" and I am so hooked on the attention he gives that I am finding myself getting very depressed and crying and not wanting to eat and just a total wreck any time I think he is not giving me that attention. It is the things he says about my body, my looks, they way I can get him all wound up, just like you mentioned. I thrive on it but wow, it is taking its toll SO bad on me. I am at the point now where like a drug, it is never enough now unless he totally focuses on me in that particular way. It has gotten to a sickening level. I don't even care if he and I actually end up being intimate at this point (we have in the past and it was great at first but that is not even my goal now), it is just the fact that I can get that attention from him and stuff gets started that is enough for my fix. But it is like I need it A LOT from him. He is a very suave guy, like yours, many women after him. So I can relate to that too. We cannot be together though and I know I need to break this badly. I am starting to really lose myself in this and that feeling is a bad one that is making me sick. It is unreal how I can get SO upset if he dont come around or say the stuff I want to hear like multiple times a day. It just keeps getting worse.

I am in therapy and on a med to help the depression and try to work through this. But, I was looking online for someone else with this issue and saw your post and wanted to talk. I'd love to talk to you via email if you are interested.


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