Why Your Ex Hates You And Is Mean To You

Some break-ups are amicable and others are bitter and nasty. Some people stay friends after a breakup, and others want to forget they ever knew each other’s name. Then there are exes that say you are going to remain friends, but then they start acting really cold and mean?

They see you and quickly walk away or ignore you altogether, or they talk to you (even sometimes initiates the conversation) only to start telling you how much you hurt them, how better of they are without you or how great their life is now that you are not together. They go out of their way to be affectionate and flirtatious with others when you are around and tell you about this or that great person they’re seeing. They even talk about their (great) sex life and what this or that other woman/guy does with them. And whatever you say or do, all your best intentions are met with hostility, suspicion, resentment, irritation, anger, vindictiveness and worse.

Why would someone who said they loved you now be hurting you intentionally?

Some exes act mean because they really want you gone.  It’s a passive aggressive behaviour where someone feels that if they are mean, cold and cruel to you, you’ll get the message and leave them alone. This is especially the case if the person feels that you are in denial or are not accepting the fact that it is indeed over. You trying to hang on to them or be a part of their life  irritates them. Your hanging around  irritates an ex even more if you are still professing your undying love and commitment.

Why don’t they just tell you to get lost instead of intentionally trying to hurt you?

If the break-up was not nasty or if your ex broke up with you, they may be struggling with a combination of pity and guilt. They feel pity for you because you are a really “good” human being, but they just don’t have those romantic or love feelings for you anymore. They feel guilt because they can not love you as you love them and that in some ways makes them a “bad” person. The combination of pity and guilt gets under their skin, literally, making them angry at you for making them feel this way. Your sad puppy-face doesn’t help.

Could it be that they still has feelings for you?

It is possible that your ex is not over caring for you. Their cold, mean and cruel behaviour is their way of trying to deal with the feelings they still have but do not want to feel. You can usually tell an ex is dealing with conflicted feelings by how they go back and forth. One day they are so loving and kind and the next mean and cruel. Their reaction to you reflects what they feel at that time or on that day.

But if the person is angry, mean and cruel to you all the time, with no “loving and caring” breaks in between, they want you gone, like really gone!

Just a word of caution. The sweet-and-mean intervals may also be a result of Bipolar Disorder. If your ex has a history of Bipolar, it may just be that they can’t help themselves.

Does your ex have to hate you that much and be so cruel?

A majority of relationships where an ex acts cruelly post-break-up were toxic to begin with. It’s rare for a healthy relationship to go toxic and unhealthy post-break-up. For some exes, it’s a power/control thing. If they can control how you feel, they control you. For others, they interpret your pain as “you still care for them” and that makes them feel good in a twisted way.

If this is what is happening to you, and you are still trying to get your ex back, you need to ask yourself, “Is this person treating me with love and respect?”, “Is this the kind of man or woman I want to spend the rest of my life with?”, “What kind of life would that be?”

Should you then leave your ex alone and move on?

It depends. If this is your ex just being their usual mean and cruel self, it may be best for your own good to move away from the emotional abuse. But if your ex is a kind and caring person who would never act mean or cruel unless forced to, then you need to look at yourself. May be your refusal to accept reality or your your needy and clingy actions are forcing your ex to try to push you away. Work on changing you, and see if they start warming up to you again.

Sometimes it’s him or her, but sometimes it’s really you.

More: Do Avoidants Apologize When They Hurt You?

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  1. says: Alice

    Pretty much all the things I don’t like about him are showing up in the way he is acting after we broke up. It was painful for me to end things with him even though I knew it was the right thing to do. We fought a lot mainly because he was extremely jealous and would give me the silent treatment for weeks. He is now telling everyone that I disrespected him by cheating on him. He sends me texts saying I wasted 4 year of his life and calls me names, then says how much he loves me and is hurting. I still care about him but I feel like he has a lot of emotional immaturity issues he needs to work through.

    1. That’s why they say don’t marry someone until you’ve at least broken up once… People’s worst traits and childhood issues show up when emotions take over and rational thinking goes out the back door.

      But in your situation, his worst traits are not just about being hurt over the breakup, and they go beyond emotional immaturity.

      I hope that you do not take him back until he’s had major therapy. His “issues” will escalate to physical abuse, and worse.

    1. If we operated only on very basic emotions (fear, anger, happiness, sadness, surprise) like most animals or didn’t have human emotions (like computers), it’d be easy to simply “program” a relationship and have it work exactly how we program it.

      Complex emotions make human beings unpredictable. Many of us don’t handle “unpredictability” very well. Those that do, are better with and at relationships in general.

  2. says: Eva

    Yangki, I’ve been reading your articles for a while and I must say the way you explain human relationships makes it seem so simple. I almost want to ask if it is really that simple but I guess it is because some of your advice that I have implemented delivered. Am I right to think relationships are that simple, or not?

    1. Human relationships are complicated simply because humans are complicated (mostly because of our emotions).

      But understanding human relationships is simple, really is.

      It’s us that make understanding relationships complicated because we over think them (*wink*), over-generalize by gender or otherwise, want one thing but say/act directly opposite to what we want, or follow stupid rules that have nothing to do with how humans relate in a healthy way.

      What I try to do is remind us of the basics which we all deep inside already know. It is the fact that you ALREADY KNOW these things that make it seem so simple.

      But not for everyone of course. Some of us still want to complicate everything to justify why we struggle (ego!)…

      I recommend reading: Love Is Not Supposed To Hurt But Why…

  3. says: Vesper

    Yangki, you are going to be crucified for telling the truth. So many women especially American women believe and act like everything that goes wrong in the world or in their lives is the fault of men.

    1. I hear you. Sadly, there are so many men out there who also believe and act like everything that goes wrong in the world or in their lives is the fault of women. Most are single for a reason.

      I also get the “speaking from a man/woman’s point of view” type… Whatever they say is a “man/woman’s point of view” often does not reflect the views of the millions of men and women in the world.

      There are wonderful women and there are wonderful men, and there are not so wonderful (to put it politely) men and women out there. It would benefit both genders to start seeing and treating one another as individuals acting like individuals, not on behalf of one or the other gender.

      I’m willing to stand in the crossfires if it helps in some small way to get men and women working together so we all can have loving fulfilling relationships.