The Real Reason Your Guy Treats You Like Crap

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My Husband Hates Me: Why Women Miss Signs Of Emotional Abuse In Relationships
Love, Self

You deserve better.

I receive hundreds of letters every week. And let's be real. Men and women in healthy relationships aren't writing to ask me for relationship advice.

When I hear from men and women all over the world asking for insights about love, marriage, dating, and communication, some of the most common questions I'm asked are:

  • "What did he mean when he said ____?"
  • "Why did she tell me that she ____?"

Often, the answers are highly individualized, and I get into the nitty-gritty details of life, love, and romance with those who write in, decrypting things and shining the proverbial light on the middle-of-the-road truth.

But it saddens me that one of the most-asked questions I receive is, "Why does he treat me like crap? I feel like my husband hates me."

RELATED: 21 Signs You're In An Emotionally Abusive Relationship

Let's get something out of the way: I'm not talking about women writing in about physically abusive relationships. That's not only treating someone "badly," it's also a felony. If you find yourself in a physically violent relationship, leave. Period. The End.

The relationships I'm discussing fall into more of a grayish area. They may not involve physically violence, but rather, they involve emotional abuse.

Negative interactions and poor treatment in emotionally abusive relationships are most definitely damaging, and can be harder to recognize for what they are or why they are happening.

These relationships keep you questioning and guessing in a never-a-dull-moment style, leaving you muttering to yourself: "It wasn't always this way, was it?"

No, it wasn't always … and that's what is so damaging.

RELATED: 11 Signs Of Emotional Abuse In Relationships — And How Abusers Try Using Them Against You If You Leave

Your guy does treat you right ... sometimes. But now that you're deeper into the relationship and feelings are out in the open, he's changed. Maybe he isn't available as often as he once was (without a genuine excuse), or perhaps he is emotionally distant without an explanation, or maybe he starts fights and arguments, withholds affection, has simply stopped being thoughtful, or has just disconnected from you.

It leaves you asking yourself some ugly questions: "What did I do wrong? What's wrong with me? What did I do to make him change?"

A reality check: You didn't make him change. Without a weapon, no one has the power to make someone do anything they don't want.

This leaves one explanation: He is choosing to act this way. And not only is he choosing it … you're, likewise, allowing and enabling it.

Here's the harsh truth: People can only treat you in ways you allow.

In essence, you give permission and imbue people with the knowledge of how to treat you.

So, if you're settling for someone's poor treatment or halfway efforts, you're silently telling them, "Thank you. This is how I want you to treat me. I'm OK with this. More, please."

RELATED: You Can Get PTSD From Staying In An Emotionally Abusive Relationship

Unfortunately, this explanation, while accurate, doesn't provide all the information needed for a genuine explanation of this pattern. Often, the real culprit is a lack of self-esteem on your part.

People find themselves treated in ways they don't like because:

  • On occasion, they receive the love they want, and they put up with poor behavior the rest of the time to get a crumb of love at some point in the future
  • Their self-esteem is so low, they feel (consciously or subconsciously) that this is "all" they deserve

If you put up with bad treatment, that tells your partner that you don't respect yourself. You show him that you believe you're only worthy of the unacceptable way he treats you ... and each time you go back and forgive him, you reinforce his bad behavior.

RELATED: The Painful Reality Of Being Emotionally Abused By An Ex Every Day

Escaping this cycle is challenging, as your sense of self-worth and esteem get locked up in the relationship, creating a constant search for moments of love amidst long bouts of indifference.

If you've communicated your needs and he refuses to act or alter his treatment of you, sometimes the only way out of the cycle is, well ... out. Move on to someone who treats you like a treasure.

And by "someone," I don't mean a new relationship ... I mean move on to you.

Self-worth and self-esteem emanate from self.

Start with you. Respect and value yourself, and everyone around you will have no choice but to follow your lead.

RELATED: I Saved Myself From An Emotionally Abusive BF (And You Can Too!)

Charles J. Orlando is a bestselling author and relationship/interpersonal relations expert who has spent the last 10-plus years connecting with tens of thousands of people. For more, visit his Facebook page, where he offers free, street-smart love advice to men and women around the world.