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Need and Contact

Night-time, half past two: “But I want to play!”. The challenge, when dealing with children, is that they first must learn that for the regulation of needs the position of others must also be considered. As an adult, however, it will be difficult, without contact or empathy, to find another person who is willing to permanently fulfil your own wishes. This, however, is exactly the problem with many people in interaction with needs: they want others to be responsive to them without creating an internal or external relatedness. In (many) marriages, as well as in a leadership context or in committees, everybody wants something from the others, but nobody invests in a form of togetherness where the others are happy to give something. Therefore, from a counselling technique viewpoint, it is indispensable to pay attention to how the client expresses his needs, and, if required, to work more on his contact ability and less on his needs regulation competence. Contact always takes priority, because otherwise needs resistance, rebellion, reluctance, adaptation, conflict, competition, jealousy, envy, greed and revenge are triggered, but no nurturing of each other.

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