If you feel unappreciated in your relationship, the best thing you can do is ask. Asking, especially if done the right way, will often get you what you want. The new feeling of appreciation you receive will go a long way to improve your connection to your partner, as well as your overall relationship.
Feeling unappreciated in a relationship is something no one wants to experience. It leaves you hurt and causes you to doubt the strength of your relationship. A lack of appreciation will even lead you to question everything about your partner and wonder if they still love you.
Human beings are built for connection. Being in an intimate relationship with someone is one of the highest connections in life, and the quality of that relationship will determine the quality of your life.
But how do you build that kind of connection when you don’t even feel like your partner appreciates you?
We will discuss the following:
** What does it feel like to be unappreciated?
** Signs that your partner does not appreciate you
** What happens when you don’t feel appreciated?
** Why it’s important to ask for appreciation
** The right way to ask for appreciation in a relationship
** How often should you ask for appreciation?
What does it feel like to be unappreciated?
1). It feels hurtful: When you feel unappreciated by the one you love, it hurts your feelings and affects your self-esteem. If not dealt with, this feeling of hurt can quickly lead to anxiety about your relationship.
2). It feels discouraging: Feeling like you’re not appreciated might discourage you from giving your best for the relationship. After all, your partner is not showing any appreciation for what you are doing, so why do more?
3). Not enough: It feels like you’re not good enough for your partner, since they apparently can’t find something to appreciate in you.
4). Not respected and valued: An intimate relationship thrives on mutual respect and value. Whenever you feel unappreciated, it feels like you are not respected and valued by your partner.
5). Overwhelming: It can feel really overwhelming when you’re always wanting appreciation from your partner but not getting it.
6). Petty & shamed: There might be feelings of shame, and it might feel like you’re being petty by asking for something that “doesn’t matter that much”. Except of course that it really does matter.
Signs that your partner does not appreciate you
1). They don’t say Thank You: They take you for granted and won’t say Thank You when you do stuff at home (or for them).
2). They don’t tell you what they appreciate about you: They might tell you that they love you, but they can’t highlight anything concrete they appreciate about you as a person.
3). They belittle the things you do: You hear things like “anyone could easily have done that” or “I could do it too”.
4). They refuse to acknowledge your efforts: They never mention how tidy and neat the home is when you clean it, but will nag and complain whenever it is dirty.
5). They don’t say Please: They think it’s their right to receive your actions and you’re simply doing your duty.
What happens when you don’t feel appreciated?
1). Arguments and Fights: When you feel unappreciated, you might do some things to draw attention to yourself so that your partner can notice you and know that you matter. If not handled correctly, this will easily lead to arguments and fights.
2). Withdrawal and Resentment: Prolonged feelings of unappreciation will cause you to withdraw into your shell and feel resentful towards your partner.
3). Poor sex life: When you feel unappreciated by someone, you’re less likely to be turned on by them. This will affect your life in the bedroom and create an unsatisfactory sex life.
4). Sense of rejection: Feeling unappreciated might make you feel rejected by your partner… which can easily lead to infidelity.
Why it’s important to ask for appreciation.
1). Your partner might not realize that they are not doing it. It could be completely unconscious on their part and all they need is for you to bring it to their attention.
2). They might be doing it in their own way & not know that you’d rather be appreciated in a different way.
3). To avoid the feeling that you’re being taken for granted.
How to ask for appreciation in a relationship.
1). Pick the right time: Timing is everything for this kind of conversation. You want to be sure that the two of you are in a good space to talk. You also definitely don’t want to bring this up in the middle of an argument. It needs to be a standalone conversation.
2). Ask for their permission: You can say something like “Hey Babe, I’d like to talk with you about something I’ve been feeling lately. Is now a good time?” This shows that you respect and value them.
3). Start by appreciating them too: Let them know what they are already doing well. Whenever you want to say something that might come across as criticism to your partner, it’s often important to introduce the conversation by spelling out what you appreciate about them.
4). Ask directly: Be direct, ask for what you want and don’t beat around the bush. Also, be sure to give examples of what you’d love. Don’t just state the problem, go ahead and offer the solutions… or at least make some suggestions to consider.
5). No nagging: Don’t nag about it, and it shouldn’t be something you talk about everyday.
6). Ask nicely, don’t attack: Be gentle in your communication, so that you don’t make it an attack. Focus on how you feel, not accuse them for how they make you feel. For example: You can say something like “I feel XYZ”, instead of “You make me feel XYZ.”
7). Show that you care: Ask your partner how they feel too. Do you feel appreciated in our relationship? What can I do to show you how much I appreciate you?
How often should you ask for appreciation?
If your partner listens to you the first time and starts showing you the appreciation you desire, then there’s no need to talk about it again.
However, it’s also possible that they might forget about it after some time and revert to their normal way of life. In that case, it’s okay to revisit the conversation and ask for their appreciation once every 3-6 months.
Again, this totally depends on your situation and how much the lack of appreciation is affecting your relationship. You don’t want this to become something you nag about on a daily basis or remind him every 2 weeks. That will become frustrating to your partner and might even cause him to stop trying altogether. So make sure you don’t do it too often.
Let your intuition guide you. Ask for what you need, but don’t nag about it. Be an example and show your partner that you appreciate them too. At the end of the day, it’s your relationship and you deserve to be happy in it. So do what it takes to create that happiness, it’s all in your hands.