Clingy partners are the worst - especially if having alone time is something that's super important to you and your mental wellbeing. But, there's a line between "Wants to spend time with me because they like me" and "Yeah, they're actually just controlling and jealous".
Here, 10 people who have dated stage 10 clingers share their horror stories - from the slightly annoying to actual stalking.
Warning: some of these accounts contain examples of emotional abuse and manipulation.
1."She turned up at my workplace - uninvited"
"I went on a couple of dates with this girl. She was really cute. However she quickly started texting me every day just saying, 'What are you up to?' She’d get jealous if I either didn’t answer super quick, said ‘nothing’, or if I was with other friends/working. It got to a head when she turned up at my place of work! Not only was it super embarrassing, but I was also working. We were also not even girlfriends at that point, we'd just been on a couple of dates. Needless to say we didn’t go on anymore."
2."He followed me everywhere"
"I dated this guy who was literally clingy. He would follow me around the house. One morning, he followed me downstairs, then followed me to the kitchen, then followed me to the cupboard while I got a cereal bowl, then followed me to the spoon drawer, then followed me to the cereal cupboard, then followed me to the fridge, then followed me to the kitchen table. I ate my cereal, then told him I needed some 'me time', so I was going to go for a drive. I got about 10 minutes away from home and he started texting me and calling me incessantly. I broke up with him a few days later, and he tried to block the front door when I was trying to leave. Luckily he was not very strong, and I was able to push him out of the way and get out."
3."He always had to be touching me"
"My high school boyfriend was codependent and extremely clingy. When we were together he always had to be touching me, he hung on me and restricted my movement, would get upset if I didn't respond to messages fast enough (even though he would respond at his own pace), got upset when I talked to other people in front of him, and had a complete tantrum when I decided to move away for uni."
4."He gave me no space"
"I dated a dude in high school who wanted to meet up with me when we got to school before class, eat lunch together, hang out after school, text constantly between that time and time for bed, and on weekends do more stuff together. I'm the type that needs a decent amount of space and alone time, so he did not last."
5."His 'clinginess' was emotional abuse"
"First and second year of university. He was emotionally abusive. Didn't trust me. At one point, I wanted to go home to visit my mum for the weekend alone, and he thought I was leaving to cheat on him. If I went out with my girlfriends, he'd throw a shit fit saying I was probably out meeting men.
"He'd con me into staying home with him"
"He'd con me into staying home with him only to play video games and completely ignore me while I passed out alone in our bed crying at 10pm, just to be woken up by him finally coming to bed at 3am. When I broke up with him, he threatened to kill himself. Multiple times."
6."I had to get a restraining order"
"I went on a couple of dates with this man, he seemed like a nice person. This guy would text me everyday. I was in class, [and he would] get very upset/borderline mad if I did not answer his texts in five minutes or less. [We went] on a date and he was talking about his ex and how unhappy she was in her marriage, so I thought, 'Meh... this is over'. But, that night he sent me like 50 messages [saying] how much he missed me, and wanted to see me right away. I said 'No, I have class early in the morning, goodnight.' The next morning, [I had] 40 messages saying how mean I was because I was not answering his messages. I was like, 'Sorry I was not trying to be mean', so I went to a second date with him. He said, 'I am going to send a limousine to your school.' I was like, 'WTF No'. He was upset and angry because he had already booked a limousine for me. I should had blocked him there, but no.
"He added me on ALL social media"
"On our second date, he was trying hard to take me to his house, but before and during the dinner, he would say things like like, 'Women who have sex with more than three men in their lifetime are whores' or 'Bitches want to come to my place and stay here'. He added me on all social media. Finally I had to put a restraining order on him because he was stalking me..."
7."He had to know what I was doing at all times"
"I was in a long distance relationship with a guy who wanted to know my every move. My daily texts to him would sound something like this. Bear in mind it's a separate text each time, and I was running some errands.
Babe, I just got off the bus
Now I'm heading to the bookstore
I'm in the bookstore
Found the book
Urgh I need to pee
I'm inside the ladies now
Just gonna wash my hands
Okay gonna pay now
Just left bookstore
Gonna go lunch now
Needless to say, we didn't last long."
8."He came to my classes despite not even going to my uni"
"My second boyfriend (first year at university) would not leave my tiny apartment and give me some alone time. I was quite clear about how I enjoyed my 'me time' but he still did not take it well when I asked him to leave some days. Once, I started taking a class that he had some interest in. He sat in on the classes with me despite not being a student at that fucking university (it was like a 20 person class and I'm 100% sure the prof knew he didn't belong.) I told him it made me super uncomfortable to be party to that, but he didn't really care."
9."He called me non-stop to make sure I wasn't cheating"
"He didn't go to prom with me so I went with my best friend. I understand we were in different places with money, I wasn't upset, but he called me nonstop to make sure I wasn't cheating on him with my female friend who was in a relationship with another girl. We're both bi, but we would never work in a relationship for a variety of reasons and we'd been purely platonic best friends for years. At one point I told him I couldn't text anymore because I was gonna go dance with my friend with my gloves on and my glasses off (pictures, man) and he threw a fit."
10."He was jealous of my friends"
"We met on a dating app and texted for a few weeks. Eventually we talked on the phone. [Everything was going] well until I mentioned I was bi. He then proceeded to get jealous as fuck, trying to tell me I couldn’t hang out with ANY of my friends and whatnot. We hadn’t even met in person at that point. He acted absolutely crazy, almost like we were already engaged."
11. "He insisted on walking me to work every day"
"I was in an abusive relationship. He started off as clingy and this turned into extremely controlling behaviour. Within our first year of dating, he INSISTED on walking me to work (all the way to the front door where I was entering the key code). Colleagues were extremely confused by it. He cried and sobbed like a child when I said I couldn't meet him because I needed to prepare for the week ahead (washing etc). I'd spent every evening of the week with him already. Years later, he'd show up at my work's Christmas drinks (no spouses allowed). It turned extremely sinister. He put a camera up in the living room and could watch me on a phone app from work, if I was home first. He controlled everything I ate. I wasn't even allowed Diet Coke because it wasn't healthy. I ended up with zero friends."
12."It got annoying"
"I dated him for about two months before I just finally had enough and broke up with him. He was telling me he loved in two weeks in and didn’t want me being away from him. I’d be at home studying or something and he’d be blowing up my phone asking me if i was 'mad'. Like, I’m studying? It got way too annoying."