I don't know if I'm having trouble distinguishing the difference, but as far as I feel, being dependent on anyone is a sign of weakness. From what I read and see in my own life, when people are flirting or dating or whatever, they always have some reason to write someone off because of some nit-picky reason (doesn't make enough money, not enough dating/sexual experience, dependency issues, etc), and this has completely turned me off from the whole aspect of going out with anyone. It makes me think that people are overall just incredibly selfish and shallow, and only let people hang around with them as long as they have some functional use they can benefit from. I'm tired of having to be exposed to people like this, and I'd rather instead devote my life to people and causes that matter (e.g. family and helping those in trouble or less fortunate). I'm polite, courteous, and friendly to single females, but I take their attention or any indicators of interest with a grain of salt, since so many of them end up having problems being themselves, and turn out to not be what they seem. Frankly, I'd rather waste my life doing something worthwhile and living it to the fullest in that way versus wasting time and emotion with people that like to play smoke and mirrors. Things like going out drinking or clubbing just come off as such as waste to me. Unfortunately, people don't bother reading into it, and conclude that it's a real elitist POV. I'm good at what I do, and I help a large amount of people in the process, but my happiness comes from being able to make a difference in people's lives since my entire life until a few years ago was poverty and suffering within my family. The remaining members of the family just collectively busted our asses to get out of the hole we were in. I also get happiness from being able to do well in what I do. Once those I'm caring for in whatever capacity look like they're doing well, I don't bother with looking for recognition, and quietly move on to the next challenge before they get a chance to thank me. The feeling I get here is more of a my job is done, and now that they're happy, I know I'm not in their future, so it hurts less if I just disappear without a trace, rather than live with the fact that they'll be happier than I am, and not wanting to steal their thunder to make myself feel happy, because I interpret that as being selfish and not considerate of what others are going through. There seems to be such a big deal made out of being dependent on others, and it's made me believe that you basically have to be this lone wolf ubermensch in order to get with anyone for the long haul. Even if I were to ever get with someone, I wouldn't want to be dependent on her, but I would want her to be able to depend on me if she was in need, or any children or whatever. I'm equating this as any degree of dependency = needy = weak = undesirable. Do you have to come across as some kind of perfect being in order to get people to like you? Ever since I was young, it's like people have always held me to be at a higher standard than that of my peers, and so it's like I have to be this iconic figure of whatever, or else I'm just "not worthy" (and all the associated treatment that comes with it) because I'm not living up to expectations. It makes me wonder if this is the feeling that people get when others put them on a platform. Thoughts?