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Are You a Giver Who’s Feeling Unappreciated in a Relationship?

A relationship isn’t always sunshine and rainbows. When you’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship, it can bring up feelings of resentment and anger.

feeling unappreciated in a relationship

Relationships should be a two-way street, but it’s not always the case. Most of us like to do things for our partners. Sometimes that kindness leads to expectation and once that starts, it becomes a pattern near impossible to break. Feeling unappreciated in a relationship can really feel disheartening.

The good thing is that you can learn to take a stand and understand how to stop feeling this way. Whether it’s your partner taking advantage of your kindness or your lack of boundaries, it doesn’t have to be the end of your relationship just because you feel unappreciated right now.

We assure you, everyone who has ever been in a relationship or in love has felt this at least once in their dating life. [Read: 15 strong ways to stop being taken for granted by the ones you love]

Is it really a lack of appreciation, or something else?

Before getting into why you feel unappreciated, figure out if it’s actually the case. Sometimes it feels like your partner doesn’t see all that you do for them, but they may show their appreciation in different ways.

This is why it’s important to know everything about love languages. Just because you show love in a certain way, doesn’t mean they do as well. Maybe they do not come right out and say “thank you” or do something romantic, but they show their love in other ways.

Maybe they fix things around the house or make dinner regularly. Of course, that doesn’t invalidate your feelings of being unappreciated in a relationship, but it does give you something to think about and a different perspective for your relationship. [Read: Feeling unappreciated? 31 unappreciated quotes to empower you]

Fix the feeling of being unappreciated by letting your partner know that you feel like they don’t see what you do or appreciate it. From there, they can start to change their behavior.

There’s a good chance they do not even know you are feeling this way. Sometimes all that is needed in this situation is to share your feelings with your partner. [Read: 18 critical signs of a clearly unhealthy relationship]

What causes feeling unappreciated in a relationship?

There are many factors at play on why you’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship. If you’re selfless and generous by nature, then you’re likely to feel this more than usual. Your intentions are often pure but sometimes, it can exhaust and drain you when your partner isn’t reciprocating those feelings.

It’s easy to feel unappreciated when you’re the one who makes most of the sacrifices. But you need to remember that love is unconditional, and everything you do should be without the expectation of getting it back in return. Love is sacrifice, and you don’t always get back what you give.

Another aspect that causes feeling unappreciated is if you’ve experienced this in your past relationships, where they intentionally took you for granted, and you think your partner’s doing the same. [Read: How to become a better communicator in your relationship]

It’s so easy to assume that history will repeat itself but you need to remember, your past does not equate to your present. You need to give your partner the benefit of the doubt if this is the case.

Also, you might be feeling unappreciated in a relationship because you can’t stick to your personal boundaries. [Read: How to stop being a doormat and feel in control again]

What you need to do when you’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship

Other than speaking up and talking to your partner about how you’re feeling, there are a few other ways to deal with feeling unappreciated in a relationship.

You do not need to be sneaky or subtle or follow a bunch of steps. All you need to do is know your worth and demand the respect and appreciation you deserve. [Read: 16 reasons why people find it easy to take you for granted]

1. Gain self-respect

Working on your self-respect is easier said than done. It doesn’t happen overnight and for some, it takes months to years of therapy. Feeling unappreciated in a relationship sucks and is not better than being single.

Being single and respecting yourself for making the healthy choice may be a shock at first, but it’s what’s best for you and your self-esteem in the long run. Just as you freely give respect and love to others, this should also go to yourself.

If you don’t respect yourself enough, all your other friendships and relationships will become affected. [Read: How to stop loving someone else and love yourself more!]

2. Be confident

Don’t just act confident. Sure, sometimes faking it until you make it is the way to go, but actually build up your confidence. Often we let ourselves fall into the pattern of feeling unappreciated in a relationship because we lack the confidence to speak up. [Read: How to build your confidence and realize you are worth it]

When you’re confident, you can speak up about your feelings without the fear that you’ll be invalidated or criticized. Most importantly, you know within yourself that you’re worthy enough to be in a relationship where your efforts are reciprocated.

When you’re confident, you can show your partner that you won’t stand for this while still letting them know you love them. [Read: How your self respect affects all the relationships in your life]

3. Just say “no”

Again, it sounds so simple. But, this is how the pattern breaks. A conversation can improve things for a while. Your self-respect and confidence are what help you move forward. Saying “no” is what changes everything. [Read: How to say no: Stop pleasing people and feel awesome instead]

The reason why people-pleasers, selfless people, and those who don’t have confidence often feel unappreciated is their inability to say “no”. “No” isn’t a bad word. Just because you decline doesn’t mean you don’t love them anymore.

It just means you’re sticking to your boundaries and respecting yourself enough. So, as hard as it can be and as rash as it can seem, stop doing all you do. Stop waiting to eat dinner because you are waiting for your partner to get home. [Read: How to get out of a toxic relationship with your dignity intact]

4. Change your mindset

We often have the wrong mindset going into a relationship. Again, this doesn’t mean your feelings aren’t valid or that you’re wrong for feeling this way. However, changing your mindset and perspective will do so much when you’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship.

People don’t love the same way you do, and it’s unrealistic to assume otherwise. Change your mindset about relationships and love, and this could help significantly.

So instead of thinking they don’t appreciate you enough, try to see what other things they do. Maybe they constantly tell you they love you, run errands for you, and do household chores. Again, sometimes it’s really all a matter of love language. [Read: Why am I so unhappy? 8 changes that will change you for good]

5. Talk to your partner

You can’t keep complaining that you’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship when you haven’t talked to your partner just yet. If anything, this should be at the top of your list when you’re feeling this way. Instead of overthinking everything, open up to your partner.

They can reassure you that your thoughts probably aren’t true and that they’ll try harder to appreciate your efforts. Communication is key in a relationship, so how can you expect to feel better when you’re not even telling your partner how you feel? [Read: How to communicate in a relationship: 16 steps to a better love]

6. Manage your expectations

If you tend to have high expectations in a relationship, it will be a problem throughout your dating life. It will be easy for you to feel unappreciated, especially when you put your partner on the pedestal and expect nothing less than perfection.

Everyone is flawed, just as you are. So why do you expect so much of your partner when you can’t even accomplish perfection yourself?

You’ll feel calmer in your relationship when you have more realistic expectations. Your partner won’t be perfect, and that’s okay. That doesn’t mean they’re a terrible person or partner; it means they’re human. [Read: How to manage your expectations in a relationship]

7. Divide tasks in the relationship

If it’s really an issue, then do something about it. So if you’ve been bothered by doing all the household chores lately, then divide the tasks. This way, you’re both working as a team and helping one another out.

It also prevents feelings of resentment and anger since you’re just sticking to the chores you agreed upon.

Or, you could decide that they do the chores and you take care of finances. But before you come to any division of labor, you need to talk about it first. Discuss which things you feel triggered about that makes you believe you’re unappreciated, and take things from there. [Read: The 8 big cons of moving in no one wants to talk about]

8. Show love for your partner

Love is sacrifice, love is unconditional, and love doesn’t expect anything in return. These are the primary definitions of what love is mostly about. When we’re feeling unappreciated in a relationship, the focus shifts towards us. We want them to treat us this way and give us these things.

However, love is more about what we can do for others than what they can do for us. Love is unconditional and pure for a reason. So, if you want to stop feeling this way, remember the love you have for your partner. Shift the focus towards your partner and do what you can do for them. [Read: The 30 sweetest romantic gestures for everyday life]

9. Assess if you have a fault in feeling unappreciated

It’s not easy to admit our faults and shortcomings, as it takes a lot of self-awareness to realize we play a part. Your feelings may be valid but doesn’t mean you don’t have a fault in this.

Maybe you don’t know how to recognize their efforts, maybe you only see effort as this grand gesture, or maybe you tend to see the worst in people.

If this is the case, the only way to stop feeling his way comes from yourself and not your partner. They can help you but no matter how many words of encouragement they give you, everything stops when you take responsibility for your fault in feeling unappreciated. [Read: How to forgive yourself and free yourself of the weight of guilt]

10. Don’t dwell on it

The more you focus on being unappreciated, the more likely that feeling isn’t going away. Instead of dwelling on this, find something else to focus on. You need to think of every possible perspective rather than that one feeling.

Maybe it’s not so much as them taking you for granted, but you’re expecting too much from them. Or maybe they just can’t give you the grand gesture you need at the moment because they’re prioritizing work.

There are so many factors to consider and while your feelings are valid, it doesn’t mean you should dwell on them. In fact, that’s the very thing you should avoid doing – dwelling on feeling unappreciated in a relationship. [Read: How to think positive and reprogram your mind to stay positive]

How do you deal with feeling unappreciated in a relationship?

There are several factors to consider when you don’t feel appreciated enough. Your emotions will always be valid, but it doesn’t make them all that accurate either.

You can deal with feeling this way by changing your perspective and mindset, and appreciating even the small things your partner does. After all, they could be showing their appreciation differently – you just fail to notice it.

[Read: How to show your appreciation to someone and express your gratitude]

When it comes to knowing how to stop feeling unappreciated in a relationship, it all comes down to having self-respect and setting boundaries. Hopefully, these tips will help you overcome this difficult feeling.

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Samantha Ann
My name is Samantha Ann. I am 28 years old. It was always my dream to become an advice columnist, so after years of off and online dating and eventually finding...