Asking for What You Need – and Not Getting it

This was written a couple of months ago, but I didn’t feel ready to post it until now.


Photo Credit: Stuck in Customs via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Stuck in Customs via Compfight cc


We often talk about being brave, and vulnerable, and asking for what we want or need. Although it is often mentioned that you need to be ready to “hear no”, we don’t tend to dwell on that. And we usually do not talk at all about what happens when you ask for more and end up with less than you started out with.

In a relationship that was very important to me, I asked for more. I wanted and needed more time/energy/resources. It was hard for me to do so, because I pride myself on my independence, and it is really hard for me to open up, be vulnerable and ask for what I need. But I did it anyway.

The other person did not feel that they had the time/energy/resources available to give this to me, at that particular stage in their life. Which hurt like hell. I understood it, I respected it, but it really sucked. And it was rough.

Do I regret asking for what I need?

In the moment of rejection, truthfully? Yes, for a moment I did. In the moment of pain, hurt and rejection I regretted asking. I regretted being true to myself and I regretted daring to be vulnerable.

Because rejection sucks. It hurts.

But only for a moment, because even though it hurt like hell, I was also proud of standing up for myself. For being true to myself. For daring to say what I needed. Even if I didn’t get it.

At the end of the day, no one else is responsible for meeting our needs. We can, and we should ask for what we need and want. And others get to say no. Others get to do what is right for them. Even when it is not what we want. Same way as we get to do what is right for us, even if it is not what someone else wants.

And I will continue to be brave. I will continue to be true to myself.


  1. This is a beautiful and honest post, thank you for this! I agree it takes courage to ask for what you need. For me this is also difficult, not only for vulnerability but also because I use to believe I don’t have the right to ask – that being tolerated is everything I can hope for.

    In every relationship it happens that the other person can’t give you everything you need. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad relationship. How a refusal is communicated makes a big difference. A person who loves you will want to be able to give that to you, even if he/she isn’t able, and will tell you that. Totally different things are with people who refuse out of convenience or because they don’t want to. Those people don’t really care.


    • Thank you for your comment Kath, I agree with you wholeheartedly. In the case above, it wasn’t a matter of putting my trust in a person that didn’t care, only they weren’t able to (rather than not wanting to) meet my needs at that stage in their life. Still sucks, but such is life. And there have been times when I haven’t been able to meet other people’s needs even if I have wanted to. (And sometimes we need to prioritize ourselves, even if it means disappointing others).


  2. I admire your bravery!



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