A stage 5 clinger is someone who is obsessed with another person. If you are getting the brush-off, or worse, the eye roll, it may be time to move on.
We have all had that person in our life who we rely on a little too much, think about a little too often, or just think they are most amazing thing in the world. Sometimes the feelings are returned, and sometimes they are not. A stage 5 clinger is someone who has an obsession with another person where the feelings are not returned.
There are times when people have virtually no idea that they are smothering someone, or that their obsessive need to be in contact is scaring someone away. Clingers can come in many forms – boyfriends, girlfriends, co-workers, or even just acquaintances. Learning to recognize that your affection is one-sided is stage one of recovery. The last thing you want is to be labeled a stage 5 clinger.
Signs that you are a stage 5 clinger
These are the signs that you may be pushing yourself on someone who is not only not interested, but trying very desperately to dump you to no avail. If you see yourself in these signs, then don’t humiliate yourself even more. Back off.
#1 They don’t answer your text messages. If you have sent them three messages, and you haven’t gotten an answer, that is not an oversight… that is intentional. The more you text them, the more annoying you become. That can take a stage 1 clinger to a stage 5 in zero to five. Put the phone away. Yes! They are trying to get rid of you. [Read: 13 clingy girlfriend sings and how to avoid it]
#2 They don’t hang out with the group anymore. If you all hung out together, but you suddenly notice that the person you can’t get in touch with anymore isn’t hanging, it may be you.
Ask the other people in the group if they have been in touch, and if they all seem not to notice something amiss in their relationship with your friend, then they are likely avoiding the event because of you. Next time, make it known in circles that you are skipping, and if they show up, it is all you.
#3 They pretend not to see you when they clearly did. Before you go running through the mall, across the hallway, or jumping over trash cans to say “hi” when it was clear they saw you and didn’t wave back, just stop.
If they didn’t wait to catch up, they are trying to get away from you. A stage 5 clinger doesn’t get subtle hints. Don’t make them run while you are chasing them. Just turn yourself around and go your own way too. [Confession: I’m a boyfriend who’s too needy and clingy]
#4 When you start to talk to them, they can’t seem to get away fast enough. If it feels like every time you try to catch up with them they can’t seem to distract you quick enough, or get out of the situation at any cost, then they don’t want to talk to you.
If you haven’t done anything to upset them, then you may just be too clingy. A stage 5 clinger will often be found backing someone up to the wall as they are trying to get away. Don’t do that. Find someone else who wants to talk to you.
#5 People roll their eyes when you talk about them. If you keep asking your friends about how they are doing, and all they can do is roll their eyes, it is probably because they can’t believe that you don’t know by now.
If you have to find out about your “friend’s” life through other people instead of them, then they are likely avoiding you. It just may be that everyone gets and sees it but you, so move on. [Read: 5 reasons why loving someone too much kills to love]
#6 You have a feeling they are trying to get rid of you, but brush it off. If you go through every date in your calendar book to get together, and all of a sudden they are so busy they simply can’t find the time, then you are probably a stage 5 clinger. Making yourself available to someone when all they can do is make up excuses, and duck and weave, has stage 5 clinger written all over it!
#7 They are too nice to be mean. If you know that they are a really nice person and wouldn’t want to hurt you, but seem to try to shirk you from their social circle, then you are probably their stage 5 clinger. Someone who is too clingy may be cramping their style, but they are too embarrassed, kind, or downright nice, just to say, “Hey, back off.” [Read: 13 ways to stop feeling neglected by someone you love]
#8 Their other friends roll their eyes when you walk up. Ever felt like you just walked in on someone talking about you? If the idle chatter they were having turns to eye rolls as you approach, that probably means that you aren’t welcome.
When you join a group or conversation, people should react with delight, not annoyance. If you notice the eye roll or the wink between the people talking, keep on walking without stopping to say, “Hey what’s up?”
#9 They have omitted you from their invite list. If you are thinking to yourself, “I wonder why I didn’t get the annual invite to their holiday party, or their birthday party the month before, or their wedding the month before that,” it is time to open your eyes. They are trying to omit you from their life. A stage 5 clinger has to be omitted from invite lists or the host will never be capable of breaking free.
#10 You think “that’s funny, they didn’t even call on my birthday.” If you didn’t even get a Facebook, “Hey happy birthday,” but you notice that they are updating their status or saying “Hey” to other people, that is a sign that you are being dumped.
A stage 5 clinger will often see the signs that they aren’t being included, typically because they are stalking the other person. Hence, being a stage 5 clinger. [Read: 12 things a girl does that’ll make any guy think she’s a stalker]
#11 They are always too “busy.” If their answer to what are you doing tonight, tomorrow night, next weekend, and next year is, “Gee I am sorry I am busy,” you have become their stage 5 clinger. No one wants to be with someone who has nothing on their to-do list but get together with one person. It is time to find someone who isn’t too busy for you, and then DON’T cling.
#12 They are running out of excuses. If you catch them in a lie, like it being the third time in a row that their mother is having a birthday, they are trying to blow you off. A stage 5 clinger can only be handled one way… by lying and avoidance. If you are catching them lying about what they are doing, then it is called trying to move on – and you should do the same. [Read: 9 effective ways to stop being so needy and insecure]
#13 You feel like you’ve been replaced. If you see them with another person when they say they can’t get together, then you are probably the stage 5 clinger who has been replaced.
Sometimes when someone feels like you are getting too close and too clingy, they will move on and try to find someone who isn’t so possessive. If you have been replaced, then you were probably holding on too tight. [Read: 13 ways to stop feeling neglected by the one you love]
There are times when we can get a little overzealous about liking someone that goes on in both romantic and non-romantic relationships. If you are getting the shaft from your bestie, or even worse, they are avoiding you altogether, you may have reached stage 5 clinger status without even being aware.
The best thing you can do is take a breath, take a break, and stop trying to insert yourself into a relationship that is one-sided.