Relationships are never easy and even the strongest marriages can fall prey to unhappiness.
Those butterflies in your stomach can turn into a never-ending pit of anxiety, sullying every interaction you have with your husband.
Before you know it, you’re convinced that this burning feeling you have towards your husband is no longer love but hate.
Most of the time, women don’t always understand how something so pure can turn into something so disdainful.
But learning to hate your husband, much like falling in love, is founded on past interactions, intentional or otherwise.
Here are some reasons why you feel this way towards your husband, and what you could do to save the marriage:
1) There’s Nothing New In Your Lives Anymore
The Problem: One of the most common reasons why spouses start hating each other is that they associate the dullness of their lives with each other.
You’ve been married 5, 10, 15 years, and it feels like the part of your life where you experience new things is over.
Everything has turned into a routine, and while you may want to do something about it, you hate your partner because he seems perfectly content with this boring, rote existence.
The worst bit?
You don’t remember falling in love with such an ordinary, boring man.
What You Could Do: Talk to him about it. Be honest about your feelings and have a serious conversation about your unhappiness with the way things are.
If he’s perfectly happy with the routines of your lives together, he might not understand your disappointment at all, and you can’t just keep waiting for him to take your hints.
You could also try introducing new things into your life (or your shared life) without him.
Go on a trip, join a new class, start going out on the weekends, and if he loves you he’ll try to get involved just to be with you.
2) The Relationship Doesn’t Feel Equal
The Problem: At some point along the way, being with your husband stopped feeling like an equal arrangement.
Maybe it was always like this and you were just too head-over-heels for him to see it at the time, or maybe he’s regressed to a personality that takes you for granted just because you’ve been together for so long.
But for whatever reason, he doesn’t see or treat you as an equal anymore.
He thinks his opinions and decisions are always right and any thought you might have is just a suggestion he can ignore.
Family decisions and life decisions are always under his authority while you get the “small” stuff.
What You Could Do: Assert yourself and see how he responds. Show him that you’re not happy being the quiet housewife type that so many men think is normal amongst women.
Remind him that he married a strong, intelligent woman and the years haven’t changed that; he just stopped seeing you that way.
So make an important decision and play a more active role in the decision-making process, until he can’t ignore you and eventually seeks your input every time.
3) You’ve Forgotten The Meaning of Compromise
The Problem: When you and your hubby were young and fresh, you always considered each other’s feelings.
There was an obvious love in the air when you two were together because you cared about each other — each other’s wants and needs, thoughts and opinions.
But these days it feels like he couldn’t care less about what you really want, and maybe, as a reaction, you treat him the same way.
When you want two different things, you both just lock horns and fight until someone gives in.
What You Could Do: Start small. Remember that it’s not going to be easy, because the gap between you and your husband has grown wider over the years.
So building that bridge between you and your man needs to start with small things, and it needs to start from a place where both of you accept that you want to make each other happy.
Without that internal need to create happiness in your partner, you’ll never really want to compromise your own needs for theirs.
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4) Respect Doesn’t Go Both Ways (Or Either Way)
The Problem: After so many years of unhappy disagreements and fights turning into matches of “who can give up first”, it can be hard to say that you still respect your husband the same way you respected him on your wedding day.
You’ve seen his worst sides — his laziness, his pettiness, and all his other little ugly sides.
It’s just impossible to see him as that same man as the man you first dated all those years back.
And he might feel the same way about you, and the two of you have gotten to the point where you actively show your disrespect for each other in all the little things you do, whether it’s belittling your partner in front of your friends or not believing in their dreams.
What You Could Do: Reset. You and your husband have dragged each other through the mud, to hell and back, and simply trying to push forward is impossible because you’ve got all these little grudges against each other for the years of disrespect.
So rewind and reset. Ask yourself — do you still want to be with this man?
If the answer is yes, then forgive him for all his little transgressions and forgive him for not being perfect.
Remember that he’s human just like you, and he has fears and anxieties and insecurities that make him imperfect.
Learn to love and respect this new version of him, a version of him that is weighed down by all his problems.
He’ll see your effort to love him in spite of his issues and, if he’s smart, he’ll be grateful for that.
5) He Stopped Taking Care of Himself
The Problem: It’s hard to love someone who let himself go.
That’s not to say love is shallow and you only married him for his looks, but sexual and physical attraction is a very human need.
Without that attraction, it can just be that much easier to dislike your husband, not only because he’s no longer attractive, but because he doesn’t seem to care that he’s no longer attractive.
And this adds weight to every other problem you might have with him.
It’s impossible to respect someone who doesn’t seem to respect himself enough to care for his appearance and his health.
And if you can’t respect him, how in the world are you going to love him?
What You Could Do: Like with most points here, honesty is the best policy.
Don’t be afraid to tell him how you feel — that you want to be with someone who cares for their body and doesn’t plague himself with avoidable health conditions.
If he’s willing to do it, give him a hand with his diet and establishing a regular exercise routine.
While this can definitely be a sensitive issue, you need to make him know that you consider your life a sensitive issue as well, and the bottom line is that you don’t want to spend your life with someone you can’t stand to see naked.
6) You’re With a Narcissist Who Prioritizes Himself Over Everything Else
The Problem: So many of us end up with narcissists without realizing it, and that may have been what happened to you.
Maybe your husband was always a little vain and self-absorbed, but back then it wasn’t that big of a deal.
After all, you could compromise your wants and needs for him, simply because you preferred the happiness of a calm and harmonious relationship over the constant disagreements over meaningless things.
But you’re not as young as you used to be and you’ve realized that you want more to your life than being a “Yes Woman” to him.
You see his narcissistic demands now more than ever, and after years of acting one way, it feels impossible that he’ll ever change.
What You Could Do: There are some problems that have no solutions; this is one of them.
If you’re truly married to a narcissist, then you’re with someone who has spent a lifetime manipulating people for their own needs.
You may have fallen for it because you might have the exact self-sacrificing personality type that allows you to be undermined for the happiness of someone you love.
In fact, this is a common problem for an “empath” empath, who is the opposite of narcissists.
While people with narcissist personality disorder have no empathy and thrive on the need for admiration, empaths are highly in tune with their emotions.
Because of these opposing forces at work, narcissists and empaths tend to attract each other.
When you find yourself in a situation like this, you need to really stop and think.
Ask yourself: is he really a narcissist and have you confronted him about it?
You’ve been with him for years; you should know more than anyone else whether he’s capable of change.
And if he’s not, you need to seriously consider the option of moving on with your life, cutting away from him regardless of what he says, and escape this life of manipulation and emotional abuse.
7) You Have Big Differences That You Never Addressed
The Problem: Culturally, spiritually, morally — we all have values embedded in our systems that are a part of who we are.
No matter how flexible you might be, compromising on those values always feels like a betrayal of the self, and the more often we compromise on what we believe in, the less we can respect and love who we are.
If it’s your partner making you feel that way, it can easily lead you down the path of hating him.
Maybe you want kids and he doesn’t. Maybe he wants to split the finances and you think it should be shared. Maybe he doesn’t want to teach religion to your children, but you do.
For whatever reason, there are giant issues between you and your husband which you both thought to ignore until they couldn’t be ignored any longer.
Unfortunately, by “crossing that bridge when you get there”, you ended up investing several years of your life into someone with values completely alien to your own.
And you don’t know if you can stand that.
What You Could Do: An issue like this might be something you and your husband have already had a thousand arguments about.
If neither of you are willing to budge or adjust for your partner, then this might be another wall that simply can’t be overcome.
You have to ask yourself if you are willing to change one of your beliefs for the sake of your marriage.
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8) You’ve Been Stressed Over Everything Else For Too Long
The Problem: Sometimes the grueling realities of everyday life are enough to make spouses turn against each other.
When life becomes too much to bear, even the presence of the person you love starts feeling like an intrusion.
Through no fault of your own, the little things that your spouse does become an annoyance.
The weight you carry from work, your other relationships, or just the responsibilities you bear eventually chip away at your resilience and patience.
And who else to suffer the fallout but your spouse?
What You Could Do: Practice mindfulness exercises. Establish a mental threshold between the stressors at work and the peace you have at home.
Be aware of how life outside your marriage colors your interaction with your spouse.
Too often, couples end up being convinced that they’re unhappy with each other when really they’re just stressed about all the other things in your life.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, communicate this with your spouse.
You can ask for understanding and compassion on their behalf instead of letting them deal with your frustrations on your own.
Remember: you’re on the same team and you should be working with each other to make this marriage stronger despite outside stressors.
9) You Have a Dysfunctional Idea Of What a Marriage Should Be
The Problem: As a kid, you were probably exposed to poor relationships. Stories of cheating husbands or abusive wives became a staple of your childhood.
Somewhere along the way, this influenced you to have a dysfunctional view on relationships.
Without any references on what a normal, healthy relationship looks like, you inevitably turned to these examples and they framed your understanding of relationships.
Now that you’re married, you can’t seem to reconcile what your spouse wants with what you understand of marriage.
You constantly feel like you’re trying your best and yet not quite understanding what he wants from the relationship.
What You Could Do: You can’t change your history and your childhood but you can work with your spouse to recreate your expectations regarding marriage.
Working with your partner allows you to examine your own take on marriage from an objective point of view.
Together, you can unpack biases and convictions from your childhood and establish a baseline together that works for your marriage specifically.
The important thing is to approach this from a place of compassion. Treat this as neutral ground where both of you can openly and safely contribute opinions.
10) He Hurt You In A Big Way That You Just Can’t Forgive
The Problem: Sometimes it’s circumstances, other times it’s your spouse. Maybe your spouse has done something in the past you simply can’t forgive yet.
At this point in time, you were convinced that everything would have gotten back to normal; that all you needed was time to heal all the wounds and repair your relationship.
You feel this sense of obligation that you should have forgiven your spouse by now.
Meanwhile, you also know that’s not how relationships work. Love is a finite resource and some faults trigger problems that are beyond repair.
What You Could Do: Don’t force it. Some wounds don’t heal overnight; sometimes they don’t heal for another couple of months and that’s perfectly fine.
If you’re unable to forgive your spouse for what he’s done, there’s a chance you haven’t received the apology you think you deserve.
At this point, you can open up to your spouse and say you’re having a hard time forgiving them.
If he’s intent on saving the relationship, he would do everything in their power to make sure the relationship reaches a natural state of equilibrium.
If discussing it with your spouse doesn’t help, you just have to come to terms with the fact that you’re still healing, and that’s okay.
Forcing a resolution before it comes naturally can only drive a wedge between the two of you.
11) He Hurts You In Little Ways Without Knowing It
The Problem: There’s just no way around it: your husband is a jerk. You don’t have to have big fights every day to develop a sense of aversion for your hubby.
His habit of nitpicking everything you do to embarrass you in front of your friends can pile up.
And what’s worse, he doesn’t seem to be aware of it or even care enough to change it.
Partners are supposed to support each other; we’re meant to feel safe with them, no matter what.
But if your husband is the person causing you distress and making you question your own confidence, you inevitably feel alienated towards them.
What You Could Do: Let him know what he’s doing.
If he’s doing this habitually, chances are he doesn’t really understand what you feel or he doesn’t understand how his words impact your confidence and your relationship.
12) He’s Dealing With an Addiction That He Doesn’t Try To Fix
The Problem: You’ve always known something wasn’t “quite right”.
All those early afternoon drinks or those late nights watching betting sites have turned from small inconveniences into full-blown deal breakers.
When you look at your husband, you no longer recognize the man you married.
His priorities have shifted and it feels like you’re constantly negotiating for peace or sanity.
Maybe he’s addicted to alcohol and can’t stop the problematic binges; maybe he’s developed an insane spending addiction to cope with the stresses of daily life.
No matter the situation, you no longer feel like an equal half of the relationship but a crutch trying to support a dying marriage because he can no longer control his impulses.
What You Could Do: Be straightforward with him and tell him that you signed up to be his wife, an equal partner, and not a caregiver.
Sometimes marriages become less about give and take and more about taking each other for granted.
If you feel your husband hasn’t been pulling his weight or trying hard enough, don’t hesitate to demand more.
At the end of the day, this is your marriage too. His actions affect both of you and it’s only fair to want to demand more from the relationship.
13) You Feel Like He’s Held You Back Your True Potential
The Problem: You look back years before you met your husband and you can’t help but wonder how much better your life could have been if you went in a different direction.
You look at yourself in the mirror and you no longer see the person you once was. Suddenly your individuality no longer feels resolute, complete.
All you are is a wife — a husk of who you once were, an identity that’s inevitably looped with your husband’s.
At times, you’re convinced that your husband drove away whatever potential you had, and the hassle that is married life has completely stripped you of your identity.
Maybe you just don’t have time to yourself anymore because of chores, maybe your husband is actively discouraging you from pursuing your own passions.
Either way, your husband has become the source of your frustrations, the reason why you’re no longer the person you once were.
What You Could Do: Try and reach a compromise with your husband to see if you can spend more “you” time.
If your husband truly cares about your well-being, he’ll support your request and be more understanding of your needs. If not, then maybe he’s just not the best partner for you.
Hating Your Husband: Is It Normal Or Is It the End?
No relationship is perfect.
At one point or another even the strongest relationships break down, simply because love isn’t as unconditional as we like to proclaim.
And while it’s normal to fall out of love with your husband from time to time or feel like you want to move on from the marriage, there’s also a point when enough is enough.
Ask yourself, is the relationship worth fighting for are you just staying in a loveless marriage?
Are there things you can do to reconcile your feelings with your husband or are you doomed to hate him forever?
Figuring these things out can help you determine what the next best step is for you, your marriage, and the rest of your life.
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Just because a marriage has issues doesn’t mean you’re headed for divorce.
The key is to act now to turn things around before matters get any worse.
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We have one goal with this book: to help you mend your marriage.
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