12 things you don’t realize you do that make your partner feel unloved

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You love your partner to bits.

And so it bothers you when they ask questions like “Do you really love me?” or “Are we still okay?”

It makes you think “Am I not loving them enough?!”

Well, maybe you DO love them but you’re also doing not-so-obvious things that make them feel unloved.

It’s time to have a bit of self-reflection. Ask yourself if you ever do any of these things.

1) Giving one-word replies

“How’s your day?” 


“Do you want to have a picnic today?”


“Did you enjoy the party?”


You see how cold one-word answers are? 

It can make your partner feel like you don’t want to talk to them. And on bad days, they might even feel like you’re not really interested in them.

Sure, you might love them with all your being but they won’t feel that if you scrimp on your words. 

This is especially true if you’re a talker when you’re with other people but you’re quiet when you’re with your partner.

2) Not paying attention to “small things”

Do you notice when they dye their hair or when they’re wearing a new set of specs?

Can you tell when they cleaned the bathroom, or when they changed the flowers or the sheets?

If your answer is “uhhh…not really”, then it could be a reason why your partner would feel unloved

Most of us want to be seen and appreciated by our partner. We want them to pay close attention and to gush, especially if we’re trying to impress them. 

3) Not saying “thank you” enough

Maybe you’re thinking “Uhh, is it really necessary?” or “But I’m doing my part, too and THEY’RE not thanking me for it!”

I hear ya.

But for love to keep growing, you have to water it and fertilize it and shower it with everything it needs to make it grow. 

Expressing gratitude is one of the best fertilizers. And if you’re not doing it often…well, it will show.

So compliment the meals they prepare. Thank them for driving you to work or for fixing your favorite lamp.

Once in a while, you might want to give them a letter telling them how much they mean to you.

While not the most necessary, if you’re not expressing appreciation and gratitude enough, your relationship would feel like there’s something lacking.

4) Being sarcastic 

Unless both of you enjoy it, of course.

But if they’ve expressed how they hate sarcastic remarks, and you spout sarcasm every time you get pissed, then don’t expect your partner to feel they’re loved!

I get you. What if it’s just who you are. They should accept you, right?

Nope, it doesn’t work that way. 

Both of you should learn to adjust—but especially YOU because your behavior affects them (and your relationship) in a negative way.

Sarcasm bites, and it can make even the most well-adjusted person feel insulted. And if you feel insulted repeatedly, it’s only normal you feel unloved. Don’t blame them.

So if you truly love them, find a way to work on that behavior…or find someone who can tolerate your sarcastic remarks.

5) Siding with their enemy

So let’s say they tell you about an argument they had with their friend or colleague or parent. 

Instead of comforting them, do you say “But they have a point” or “Hmmm, I think you’re in the wrong here”?

I know you just want to be the “rational” one, I know you want to let them see the other side of the coin…to play devil’s advocate.

However, they probably just want you to commiserate with them and make them feel like you’ve got their back!

But shouldn’t you call them out?

Of course you can (and you should), but do it in the nicest way possible.

When they share, start with “Oh, I see”, “Tell me more”, and “How does that make you feel?”. Then if you think they’ve calmed down, ask “Do you want to know what I really think?”

6) Making decisions without considering them

You’re a couple. And so you must do what healthy couples do—make big decisions together. Or at least discuss them like you’re a team.

Let’s say you decided to take a job that’s 3 hours away from your partner. And you didn’t even ask them what they think.

Do you expect them to be okay? To still feel loved?

Of course, it can make them feel unloved. They’d even feel betrayed!

And it’s not just the very big things, sometimes the small things matter, too—like if you saying yes to a night out with friends or if you rearrange your apartment without even consulting them.

7) Lack of interest in their passions

Be honest. Do you zone out when your partner starts talking about their hobbies and interests? 

Does listening to them talk about chess or music for the millionth time feel like a chore?

Well, how you truly feel probably shows.

You might not be aware of it, but your body language might be betraying you. 

I can’t blame you. It’s hard to force interest in something.

But that’s why kindness and politeness goes a long way in romantic relationships. 

What to do? 

You can simply ask more questions or give feedback…even if you find the things they say boring. It’s simply part of your duty. Period. Besides, I’m sure you tell them stuff they find boring, too.

But the best solution is to try your best to find a way to be interested in their hobbies.

8) Not initiating sex

So you might think you’re not doing anything wrong because after all, you DO have sex regularly. You never turn them down.

But are you initiating them? 

Do you woo them and tell them how much you desire them?

If they’re the one who’s ALWAYS making the first move, of course it will make them feel unloved

Because even if you do respond to their advances, it still feels like they want you more than you want them.

Sometimes, we just want to feel we’re irresistible—like we’re the sexiest person on earth. Do you make your partner feel that way?

If you’re not initiating, they probably feel the opposite.

9) Minimizing their issues and problems

When they rant and worry, do you roll your eyes and tell them they’re just being dramatic? 

Do you say “Stop catastrophizing” or “It’s not even a problem!”?

Well, these words sting, especially if all they want is a little more tenderness.

But then you say “ I’m just teaching them to be tough”.Well, they don’t need that. Trust me, they’re tough. They just need you to listen to them and care.

10) Always prioritizing work

Do you cancel plans with them because you need to beat deadlines? Do you turn off your phone all day so you can just focus on work?

Well, it could be a reason for your partner to feel unloved.

Sure, they understand that you’re working for your future. And that it’s not like you really want to work, anyway—you just have to!

But still, if you’re spending 90% of your time doing work and you barely have quality time, they’d feel unloved.

They’d start to wonder “Am I not worthy of their time?”

So learn to have work-life balance so your relationships won’t suffer.

11) Always prioritizing other people

You love them and they’re the center of your universe, or that’s what you want to believe.

But when your friends call you to hang out for the 6th time in a week, you’d be there. You’d cancel your grocery shopping with your partner because well… that can wait. 

Same goes with your family. When they need you, you’d say bye to your partner to rush to them. And you do it often.

You expect them to understand you and you’re not worried because after all, they’re always just there.

12) Being a killjoy

Do you cringe a little when they do romantic gestures?

When they suggest you give each other silly gifts for your anniversary, do you tell them it’s just not your thing?

And when they kiss you and cuddle you or to do an ugly dance with you in public, do you secretly wish they’d stop?

Well…don’t blame them if they feel unloved, then. 

Being extra affectionate might just not be your thing, but if it could be their thing and if you keep rejecting them, of course they’d feel unloved!

Final thoughts

Your love for your partner is HUGE but if you do little things that can make them feel unloved—and if you do them often—it can erode your relationship slowly.

So make some adjustments if you truly care.

But for now, tell them about your realizations. Then assure them that you love them and you’re working on yourself so you’ll become a better partner.

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash has years of experience writing relationship articles for single females looking for love. After being single for years with no hope of meeting Mr. Right, she finally managed to get married to the love of her life. Now that she’s settled down and happier than she’s ever been in her life, she's passionate about sharing all the wisdom she's learned over the journey. Pearl is also an accredited astrologer and publishes Hack Spirit's daily horoscope.

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