I Don’t Understand Why Does My Girlfriend Hate Me?
Updated January 02, 2019
Reviewer Wendy Galyen, LCSW, BC-TMH
All relationships change over time, and it's not uncommon to reach a place where you feel like your partner just can't stand you. You may even be asking yourself, "Why does my girlfriend hate me?" Although this happens in many relationships, that doesn't make it any easier when it's happening to you, especially when you still feel in love with your partner. But if you and your girlfriend are still together, then figuring out the root of her behaviors may be able to help you turn the situation around.
Why does my girlfriend hate me for no reason?
Take a look at what kinds of behavior your girlfriend is displaying. Does she seemed short-tempered and quick to snap at you? She may be experiencing some kind of stress or difficult situation that has nothing to do with you and your relationship with her. Pay attention to see if she brings up a situation that is giving her trouble. She may inadvertently be taking this out on you. If that's the case, you're in a good position to help her through her difficulties, which will only strengthen her positive feelings for you when she gets over this hurdle.
It's also possible that you unknowingly did something that hurt her feelings or made her angry. Whatever the reason is, try to talk to her about what she's feeling. If the problem is something to do with you, you deserve to know so that you can either fix it or discuss what it means for your relationship going forward.
What can I do about it?
You cannot change what your girlfriend is thinking or feeling, but one thing is certain in every relationship- your partner needs you to show what they mean to you. It is easy to get comfortable in a relationship and assume that your girlfriend knows you love her, care about her, and think highly of her. The best way to potentially get her to stop acting like she hates you is for you to show your love for her. Model for her how you hope to be treated.
Try to do things to make her feel special, even if she's in a bad mood. Do them without the expectation of getting anything out of it for yourself. When you remind her that you care about her, she may realize that whatever you did wrong was unintentional. Or if she was stressed about something outside your relationship, you showing her tenderness may help her to relieve some of the tension and be better equipped to treat you well too.
If her behavior continues to bother you, you should examine how long she has treated you this way and whether she acts like this towards other people besides you. If it's a pattern of her behavior with people in general, then she may be struggling with a personal conflict that she is having difficulty controlling. Either way, meeting together with a couples counselor may help you find out what is bothering her and how to help.
Identifying the Behaviors that Upset You
We sometimes have a general sense that someone hates us without being able to pinpoint why we feel that way. The feelings that come up when we have that sense are usually very painful. Yet, you can't deal appropriately with the feelings until you can identify the exact behaviors that are making you feel unloved.
You'll need to pay attention to her words and behaviors. You also need to consider what you do or say before these incidents happen. How do you know she hates you? Is it words, tone of voice, actions, gestures or facial expressions? Once you observe your relationship for some time and understand how you're forming this opinion, you can move on to deciding what you're going to do about it.
Checking Your Expectations
When we meet someone who appeals to us, those first encounters can seem almost magical. It's as if we're walking on air. Everything they say or do seems charming and interesting. They may treat us as if we are the most attractive and fascinating person on earth.
However, this kind of euphoria doesn't last. Instead, we get back to being ourselves. This is a good thing, because at that point, we have an opportunity to know each other for who we really are. However, it can also be painful when ordinary life settles in, especially if we expect each other to behave as we did when we first met.
When you think that she hates you, consider that it might be that she's just treating you more authentically. Instead of hanging on your every word, she pays more attention to other things in the environment. That's healthy. Everyone needs to see beyond that one special person if they are to survive and thrive in the world. You probably want to know who your girlfriend really is, but you also liked the attention and admiration she gave you at first. Resolving that dilemma can help you feel more at peace with the relationship. Your counselor can help you come up with ways to show her she's dear to you. When you do, your girlfriend may just follow suit.
Is She Depressed?
Your girlfriend might not hate you at all. Instead, her behavior might be an indication that she's depressed. If so, it isn't necessarily a reflection on you. Depression can arise from many different causes. Perhaps abuse, neglect or trauma from her childhood is beginning to surface after years of dormancy. Maybe she's having feelings that she's wasting her life in an unfulfilling job. She may have low self-esteem because no one ever taught her to love herself. Whatever the reason, depression has several distinct symptoms you can watch for:
- Does she express feelings of sadness or hopelessness?
- Does she seem to feel helpless?
- Is she eating too much or too little?
- Is she sleeping a lot or having insomnia?
- Does she seem unusually anxious or irritable?
- Has she stopped spending time with her friends?
- Has she stopped doing her favorite activities?
- Is she unusually restless or distracted?
- Does she seem tired all the time?
What to Do If She Seems to Be Depressed
First of all, don't jump to conclusions. The signs listed above can tell you that there's a problem that might be depression. However, only a doctor or in some cases a therapist can make that determination. After all, many of these symptoms can be caused by physical ailments. What you can do is suggest to her that a counselor might be able to help. Don't nag at her or get angry with her, but instead just offer this simple suggestion in the kindest, most loving and respectful way you can. Then, leave the ball in her court.
If there's a possibility she's depressed, it's also important to take care of your own mental health. Her depressed behaviors can put a significant strain on you. You may engage in self-blame. You might become angry with her for not seeking help. Your self-esteem may suffer as you ask yourself why you can't help her. Talking to a counselor can give you the opportunity to learn more about how to help both yourself and her. You can find out how to manage your feelings in a way that doesn't contribute negatively to her condition. Getting help for yourself probably won't cure her, but you can avoid making both your lives harder.
"What If I'm Right?"
So, what if you're right? What if your girlfriend really does hate you? It is a distinct possibility, especially if you have physically or verbally abused her. You may not even realize what you're doing and saying are abuse. People who grew up in abusive households often see those behaviors as normal, because that was their normal for so many years. If so, your life doesn't have to be over, but there's a good chance your relationship will be, at least until you change the way you think and behave. As a part of your therapy, you can examine your behaviors with your counselor to determine if you are indeed abusive. It takes a lot of work and commitment to overcome being an abuser, but it can be done. A licensed counselor is the right person to help you do it.
At the same time, your girlfriend may have her own issues to deal with. If so, you may want to rethink whether the relationship is healthy enough for the two of you to make it work. Going into couples counseling is a good first step as you begin to identify the problems. You both may need to do individual work as well.
Whatever the case, whether she hates you or not, you can't have a happy life if you always feel that it's true. Couples counseling, as well as individual therapy, can help both of you build a life that you can enjoy. Counselors are available at Better Help to help you understand what's really happening and decide what you want to do about it. The worst thing you can do in this situation is to do nothing. Reaching out for help may be the best choice you ever made!