How can I convince myself that my friends don't hate me? I have this irrational fear that they actually hate me.
Last Updated: 01/23/2021 at 3:50am
Deane Rain Marie, LMFT
Marriage & Family Therapist
I take a holistic approach in working with eating disorders, mood disorders, relationships, and the LGBTQ community. I use EMDR, Dreamwork, Stories, CBT and Cinema therapy.
Top Rated Answers
It is highly unlikely that people you spend time with, laugh with, and talk with regularly hate you. In fact, they probably really like you! I understand that when we start to challenge things, it becomes a slippery slope. But try and remember that it is easy to see what you want in others -- especially if you are see the negative! If you call someone and they pick up the phone, if you make plans and they join you, if you say hello and they smile and say hello back, you can probably assume they're really a friend. Also, remember that friends come in many flavors. We're all different; we all satisfy different niches of friendship for one another.
You have an "irrational fear"? You know yourself that it is irrational. Why do you know it's irrational? Do they text frequently? Do they look happy to see you when you arrive? Do they seek out your company? Then you know, they don't hate you. But remember, we're all human, we all have issues, we all have private lives that our friends don't always see. If they don't reply to a text, remember they might have personal issues at home. If they don't smile when you arrive, it might not be a personal affront, smiling might just be difficult today. They don't seek out your company? Maybe they sitting at home hung up on whether you hate them. Life's funny, focus on the evidence that proves they like you, try to ignore small things that 'might' mean they hate you, but probably don't.
I used to have these intrusive thoughts of suspecting that friends hate me due to my insecurities in my self-worth. Often times I find myself in situations where I project this irrational fear to others in forms of verbal accusations which, in a lot of circumstances, these illogical verbal attacks would deeply hurt the feelings of those who are innocent. A great deal amount o the time was spent in "soul-searching", where I devote my time in discovering self-healing and self-exploration methods that would greatly establish a healthy sense of esteem, worth and confidence. Although still in the learning process of configuring my personality, I have found this matter of irrational fear to be weighing less in my mind, as I practice more mindfulness, logic, and calmness in dealing with my own negative emotions. Self-realization or self-actualization is the journey that everyone would be bound to walk on, so in convincing myself that there is no boundary of hate existing between my friends and I, I have to practically be involved in practices that sharpens my identity and solidifies my authentic sense of Self.
Before you can accept love from anyone else, you have to first love yourself. You are afraid they don't like you only because you don't like you.
Just remember that if they hated you they wouldn't want to be around you in the first place. Think about those times when you all had a fun time together, laughing and enjoying each others company. No one likes to be around people they don't like. With that, if you feel excluded out of your friend group, try looking for new people to spend time with. People that appreciate all that's good in you! You are a unique person and have many talents I'm sure. You shouldn't be worrying about whether your friends like you or not because then they wouldn't be your friends. Always surround yourself with people who cherish your good qualities and times together and able to stick around and be non-judgmental about the not-so-good times. You're great and deserve people who can recognize that. Never forget that!
This is actually a common symptom of anxiety. Unless your friends are verbally communicating their dislike (which would make them not your friends), you may want to look into talking to someone about how to cope with these thoughts and feelings.
The only way to change thoughts like this is to challenge the negative with a positive thought. Even with anti-depressants, the only way to solve anxiety or depression once and for all is to challenge the automatic negative thoughts that your brain processes when you see something like your friend not responding to a text or a friend not ever asking to hang out, etc. So instead of thinking, "They hate me and I am not lovable," think "There is evidence to back up that they do like me. My friends like me. I am lovable." Focusing on the positives will train your brain to not react to small circumstances in a self-deprecating way :) I hope this helps!!
Talk to them. Honesty is the best policy. If they truly value you and your feelings, they will listen, and try their best to make you feel better. And if things don't go as planned.. At least you'll stop living in a lie and start searching for new friends who will make you feel less like an outsider. Good luck!
If your friends hated you, would they be your friends? If they hated you, would they share their smiles or their laughter? If they hated you, would they try to make you laugh or comfort you in your sad times? People don't spend time with people they hate. They don't hate you. Maybe you actually hate yourself that's why you're scared that they do too. Don't hate yourself. Love yourself. Love every little flaw of yours and you will eventually see the reason why your friends love you and not hate you.
Write down a list of five things your friends do that show that they care about you. Then you can refer to it when you have those thoughts, and add to it as well.
People are generally upfront when they dislike you. If they agree to spend time with you, or invite you out, they like you. When your mind is clouded by it's own self-hate, those negative thoughts are projected onto others and they are most often inaccurate and distorted perceptions.
What you have described is a form of thinking error where you assume to know the thoughts of other people. You can ask them how they feel about you. You can write down your thoughts in a journal and reason to yourself the reasons why you might be wrong.
That's all in your perception of yourself..if your friends hated you..they wouldnt hang out with you.
I can understand how you feel. I would say working on self love is important. You feel this way because you don't feel very good about yourself, so you expect others to view you the same way when in actuality, they likely see you a lot better than you see yourself!
You alone know the response to this question. Your friends don't hate you. You're awesome, smart, and wise. You need to think about yourself
It is sometimes easy to over analyse the way your friends communicate with you, and to assume they don't like you. I have had these thoughts myself. However, you said it yourself that the feeling is irrational. If your friends are willingly spending time with you and engaging with you, the chances are that they do like you. However, it's always possible to do some self-reflection to consider how you could become an even better friend. By initiating conversations and being a great listener to your friends, you will hopefully realise that you are a good friend and that you are liked by your peers.
Well it depends honestly. It depends if they are real and healthy friend. A real friend wont mind if you have different interests than them, a fake friend or someone who wants to use or control you, make want you to do things they want to do regardless of how you feel about it. It's important to choose people who respect your choices and emotions.
Ask yourself how logical this fear is, fear usually amplifies the thoughts in your head with a negative bias. You can choose to talk to your friends about how you feel, which can help clear your doubts and fears.
Start concentrating on the things they do to show you that they love you and care for you. Sometimes you just need to think positively and focus on the better things in life.
Friends are one of the best resources you can have in your life. It really is a bummer when you have a fear that they don't actually enjoy spending time with you. Try thinking back to a time when you said something that made your friend laugh or smile. Did it seem like they disliked you then? If you're truly unsure, having a heart-to-heart with them about your feelings might help you relieve some of the stress you've been feeling. :)
You can look at the things that they do for you, however small, like asking you to come out, spending time with you, talking when you are upset. Small things like that show you that your friends do care about you, as they wouldn't do it or they would be reluctant to if they didn't enjoy your company.
If you're friends are hanging out with you, talking to you. They don't hate you. People that hate people won't hang out or talk to people they hate.
To put it simply, if they're your friends, they don't hate you. People don't stay somewhere they don't want to be, even if they're doing it for a stupid reason. Friends are friends
People who chose to spend their time with you definitely have positive feelings towards you. You chose your friends by liking them, and your friends have the same way.
It mind sound obvious and maybe it doesn't answer your question, but if they really did hate you they wouldn't be your friends, except if they are scared of you or something, but i'm guessing that isn't the case.
What others think of you is a reflection of themselves. It might actually mean they dislike themselves. Otherwise, it really could just be that you're afraid of losing good people. I say be honest that you're afraid of them coming to dislike you and would feel better if they could remind you that they care about you occasionally.
When I feel this way about myself I remember that my perspective is just as biased as anyone else's is - we all have these internal biases about the world around us, and our own view of ourselves isn't any different. Just because you believe something about yourself doesn't make it true, you have trained yourself to respond in this way. And just like you trained yourself to think negative thoughts, you have to work to train yourself out of it! Every time you tell yourself that your friends hate you, remind yourself of a time a friend showed they cared or a time you enjoyed with a friend. Never let these negative thoughts win - always combat it with an argument!
Having those thoughts are rather normal, it's not really a 'perfectionist' or wanting people to like me kind of thing going on, everyone kind of feels this way here and there. I think the best thing for you is to talk to them about it, it'll help you reassure your feeling and you know you can also spot some red flags here and there. The thing is, if they do hate you, find ways to fix it or leave them. If they don't hate you, then don't worry, you will be okay and here's the thing, friends are always going to be there, new and old, and you'll have a constant change of some with friends, who knows.
If they hated you, they wouldn't be your friend and associate themselves with you, so the fact that you can call them you friends means they don't hate you.
I struggle with this a lot. The important thing to remember is that people really value their time. If they didn't want to invest their time in spending it with you, they wouldn't. I don't know of many people who would spend quality time talking to and and hanging out with someone they didn't like! If they're there, they want to be! Keep your head up. :)
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