5 subtle signs of deep insecurity in men, according to psychology

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Humans are complex creatures with complex emotions that not only are difficult to navigate but also tough to understand.

Insecurities can lurk beneath the surface – especially with men, who are usually perceived to be aloof, cool, and indifferent. 

So today we’ll delve into some subtle signs of deep insecurity in men that may go unnoticed.

1) Inability to trust

Do you sense that your partner has some difficulty trusting you completely?

The signs may not be obvious, but if you listen carefully to their tone of voice or body language, their doubt can show.

For example, do they usually check who you’re texting by sneaking a glance at your phone? Or do they ask for detailed descriptions of your whereabouts and the people you’re with?

These aren’t inherently wrong, but there should be a level of trust between the two of you that doesn’t resort to an invasion of the other person’s privacy.

Trusting someone completely is tough, especially if one has been hurt before, or if they’re generally insecure.

However, trust is the foundation of a healthy and successful relationship. If you identify with this, this may be a sign that your partner is insecure.

2) The need to be right all the time

Insecurity can also show up in the need to be validated – one of which is a desire to be right all the time.

This stems from a deep-seated fear that they may not be smart or good enough, which fuels this desire to appear smarter than everyone else.

When your partner is in the wrong, do you find that it takes a bit of convincing before he admits that he made a mistake?

Has your partner’s need to be right all the time resulted in arguments in the past, or has been the reason for the majority of the disagreements you’ve had with each other?

If so, this is a clear indicator that you have a deeply insecure partner.

Their identity is tied to what other people think of them, especially people who mean a lot to them – like yourself.

Therefore, they will try their best to put their best foot forward and avoid looking like an idiot in your eyes. They may get very discouraged if they’re proved wrong as well.

If you’re in this situation, it’s good to be encouraging and let them know that making mistakes is all about being human – so that they can learn to be kinder to themselves.

3) The need to feel wanted

I’ve a friend who was together with this guy for about five years, but he ended things because he couldn’t keep up with her independence. 

He wanted someone who wanted him to be someone who spoils, protects, and guides their partner. But she wasn’t like that. She did love him and of course, wanted to be with him, but his insecurity drove them apart.

There was once when they watched a horror movie together and my friend, who’s unfazed by horror shows, was thoroughly amused throughout the movie, while he was scared.

At the end of the show, his insecurity kicked in and he was upset for the rest of the night – explaining to her that he would prefer someone who needed him more than her.

This need can manifest itself in other ways, but if you feel that this describes your situation, it’s important to know that it’s not on you to make him feel like a man.

4) Excessive jealousy 

When you hang out with colleagues or friends of the opposite gender, does your partner make snarky remarks or give subtle actions to indicate his displeasure?

Does he compare himself to them, even though you’ve told him multiple times that nothing is going on with you and the people you hung out with (truthfully, of course)?

Sure, not everyone is comfortable with their partners hanging out with the opposite gender, but there should be conversations to manage the other person’s expectations.

I know of a friend whose partner would constantly pick fights over this.

Any attempt to appease him will only lead to even more nitpicking of her interactions with her male friends and colleagues – to the point where she completely stopped going out with her male friends.

Again, the signs may not be overt, but insecurity tends to rear its ugly head in (multiple) subtle ways that can antagonize others.

5) A constant need for validation

Someone with a need for constant validation is a clear indicator that they’re deeply insecure.

Does your partner seek constant reassurance about his looks, achievements, milestones, and everything else?

Perhaps he’s always trying to find out what others think of him, and his mood will be affected by people’s perceptions of what he does and says. It may also influence the way he interacts with others.

It may show in the smallest ways as well, such as:

  • If someone makes a slightly negative remark, he may say that he’s unaffected by it, but his actions speak otherwise. He may even bring it up multiple times throughout the day.
  • He may bring up negative remarks that people have said of him from ages ago because he’s unable to get over these.
  • If someone compliments him or says good things about him, he’ll treat that person nicely, and even have a good impression of that person.

If your partner has the tendency to do this, it could indicate a lack of self-esteem, and that his confidence is entirely based on what other people think of him.

This could lead to a constant need for validation, which he may be dependent on you to provide.

Concluding thoughts

While it’s good to help your partner navigate through these insecurities, the onus is not on you to help him overcome this.

Deep-seated insecurity may require a lot of work to unpack, and it’s always better to consult a professional to help navigate through these complexities.

If left unchecked, this insecurity can lead to further complications in the future, and the signs may not be so subtle after a while, as these could snowball into something bigger.

What’s important is to provide them with support, affection, and empathy, although not at the expense of your own needs.

Isabella Chase

Isabella Chase, a New York City native, writes about the complexities of modern life and relationships. Her articles draw from her experiences navigating the vibrant and diverse social landscape of the city. Isabella’s insights are about finding harmony in the chaos and building strong, authentic connections in a fast-paced world.

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