Do you want to be the center of attention all the time? Has attention-seeking behavior become a large part of your personality?
If you desire to be at the center of everyone's life, you may be exhibiting other selfish behaviors, like not caring about how others think or feel. But is this really you?
The chronic desire to be the center of attention all the time, also known as histrionic personality disorder, is exemplified by always having to be noticed and or given attention. When this attention is not provided, the person with the disorder may react severely. Sufferers are more prone to engaging in provocative or destructive behavior to gain the attention that they want.
Those who are suffering from this disorder often find themselves wanting to get everyone's attention, regardless of the situation. These people feel uncomfortable when they are not getting the response they expect or want from the people around them.
The range of their behavior as a reaction to the situation could go from something dramatic, lively, and sometimes rebellious.
People with this disorder could have a hard time dealing with their environment when they are not getting the desired attention.
Often, the people around them think of them as shallow, selfish, and inconsiderate.
When does attention-seeking cross the line from being something healthy and perhaps slightly annoying to being an actual disorder?
People with an attention-seeking disorder often find it challenging to keep an emotionally-healthy relationship. Most of the time, they are unaware of how their attention-seeking actions are affecting the people they love.
Sadly, they are usually unaware of the emotional detachment that causes them to take on two roles -- the controller or the victim.
People who are suffering from such disorders seek to control their partner through emotional manipulation or even seduction. They try to be in control not only of their emotions but also that of their partners.
They tend not to listen to appeals of the heart. Whenever their partner reacts a certain way, they take out the victim card and claim that their partner is that one that does not understand how they feel.
Their desire to always be at the center of things causes them to alienate all the others around them. This leads them to lose relationships that later result in confusion and even depression.
But how can one tell if their attention-seeking desires have become more than just wanting to fit in or belong? When does attention-seeking actually become a problem?
Here are some telltale signs:
When you crave more excitement and stimulation in your relationships, then this is one sign that you may have developed the disorder.
Most of those who identified this symptom find it hard to believe that what they feel has become a full-blown disorder.
You demand that others give you the attention that you want when you want it. This is more than just seeking attention. Demanding others to listen to you just because you want the attention focused on you, then you know you are asking for too much. You may need to seek professional help.
When you want others to stop what they are doing so they could focus just on you, then you know it's more than just wanting attention.
Being overly excited about how you feel and wanting others to feel the same way is a clear indication of a disorder.
What is most challenging about this disorder is that many people don't seek treatment. In fact, many of those suffering from the disorder are not aware that they have it. They dismiss it as a part of their character.
However, if your expression of your need for attention has gotten in the way of your relationships with family and friends, it might be time to seek help. A therapist will be able to treat the problem at a deeper level.
The first step is to identify if your attention-seeking behavior has crossed the line. If it does, there is no reason to deny yourself help.
You know you need it.
After learning the signs of attention-seeking in adults, you must be wondering how such behavior could be affecting your relationships with family, friends, and loved ones.
What is underneath all these demands for attention is the conflict created among those involved. It keeps people from growing strong and healthy relationships with the people around them.
People who demand attention often seek it from friends or groups of people in a large crowd. Instead of spending time with their partner, they tend to go out with friends where they get all the attention that they want, minus the responsibility.
Nobody knows when a person with such a disability will act out or become overly dramatic. They are likely to exaggerate stories, become dramatic, and create a scene to get everyone's attention.
There are some people who have histrionic personality disorder who use their attention-seeking to build up their self-esteem. They use it for self-validation, so when things don't work out their way, they become disoriented. They no longer know who they are.
Learning how to stop attention-seeking comes in many forms, but the best one is to seek therapy. A qualified counselor will help you understand how your actions are hurting the people around you and yourself. They will be able to guide you towards reaching a better understanding of who you are and what you want. The purpose of seeking therapy is for you to eliminate the need for attention. By coming to terms with your disorder, you will be able to gain self-validation.
It is only through therapy that you will be able to take on a new reality where you begin to realize that other people's feelings and thoughts matter.
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