Are you someone who is nice to others, but once you are alone with your partner, another side of you roars out? Do you find yourself asking, ‘why am I so mean to my partner?’ Understanding the reasons behind this behavior is essential, as it can vary from person to person. Let’s explore some possible explanations that might resonate with you.
The Blame Game
One of the first things to notice is the tendency to blame yourself entirely. You start to believe that you are the big bad wolf, and your partner is the poor victim. However, relationships are not fairy tales. They involve two adults making choices. Your partner has chosen to be in a relationship with you, and if they allow you to be mean without setting boundaries, then they have their own issues. It’s essential to understand that the blame game can blind us from recognizing other important truths within our relationship.
The Quest for Perfection
If you find yourself verbally attacking your partner, it’s crucial to acknowledge that it is a serious problem. However, in some cases, we might have unrealistic expectations of ourselves. We expect to be the perfect partner, endlessly supportive and always smiling. This self-imposed pressure can lead us to be false and constantly beat ourselves up for not meeting our own standards. Embracing the messy side of relationships, including our occasional moments of bitchiness, is a part of authenticity and intimacy.
The True Sources of Lashing Out
Once you move beyond blame mode, you can start evaluating the true sources of your tendency to lash out. Consider the following possibilities:
1. Real Reasons for Feeling Edgy
Do they do things that genuinely annoy you? Sometimes, meanness can be a way to avoid facing a truth that we don’t want to acknowledge. It could be that you and your partner are incompatible, with different values and expectations. Recognizing this mismatch and letting go can lead to a healthier relationship in the long run.
2. Lack of Perceived Partner Responsiveness
Research suggests that having a partner who understands, cares for, and appreciates us leads to better health and a longer life. However, if there is a lack of perceived partner responsiveness, causing stress, snapping at your partner might be a result of this underlying issue.
3. Unhealthy Stress Relief and Dumping Ground
Pay attention to when you lash out. Is it often after something else goes wrong in your life? Sometimes, being mean can be an unhealthy way of relieving stress. If you learned this behavior from your parents, it becomes a pattern that emerges when upset. Notice if your ugly side also comes out around family and loved ones.
4. Unconscious Relating Patterns
If you notice a recurring pattern of meanness in all your relationships, it might be linked to an unconscious relating pattern or schema. These patterns often stem from childhood difficulties or traumas. Unresolved issues can shape our beliefs about ourselves and others, leading to unhealthy behaviors aimed at self-protection.
Therapy can be instrumental in helping you recognize why you lash out and providing you with coping mechanisms to better manage your emotions. Seek professional support and embark on a journey towards healthier relationships. If you suspect that you have borderline personality disorder, do check out our article, “Therapies that Work for BPD.”
Ready to stop sabotaging your relationships with meanness and embrace love fully? Six Minute Dates connects you to highly regarded therapists in London. You can also use our online booking site to find affordable therapy options across the UK and worldwide.
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