What to Do if Your Family Hates You

WhatToGetMy Instructional Article

  • If you grew up in a dysfunctional family, chances are you have been held to impossible standards your whole life and you were even made to compete for your parents’ love and affection – to prove yourself worthy.
  • If you feel like your family hates you, it is most likely that you are your family’s scapegoat.
  • This article highlights some of the reasons why your family might hate you and how you can protect yourself from their malicious words and actions towards you.


If you have reason to believe that your family hates you, chances are that you are growing up or have grown up in a dysfunctional family. A dysfunctional family is a family that is filled with conflict and instability which is exhibited by parents or legal guardians whose behavior is expected to be accommodated by the children and often leads to negative behavior. This negative behavior may present itself as hate especially when you do not understand what is going on. Below are some of the characteristics of a dysfunctional family.

1. Poor Communication Skills

When you are a child of a dysfunctional family, you may feel that your thoughts and feelings go unheard and misunderstood. You may eventually find that you are keeping thoughts to yourself and not sharing major parts of your life with your family.

2. Perfectionism

Children of dysfunctional homes are often required or held to unrealistic standards of perfection and failure to achieve this will lead to mockery and ridicule. This creates an unsafe environment for the child and they may end up feeling as though they are “not [good] enough”

3. Lack of Empathy

Dysfunctional parents will often not show empathy to their children. They are judgmental and use emotion as a weapon to manipulate their children. Even when wrong, the dysfunctional parent never apologizes to their child. They refuse to put up any effort in trying to understand their children and their feelings

4. Control

Perhaps the most visible symptom of all of a dysfunctional family is control. Dysfunctional parents like to control their children in every aspect of their lives. Sometimes, they may use siblings to compete against each other just so they can control who gets their affection and who gets ridiculed.

Needless to say that growing up in a dysfunctional family can have negative effects on children. Aside from the general feeling that they are not loved, children from dysfunctional homes develop mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

Related Article: How to comfort someone with anxiety

Major depressive episode in the past year among adults aged 18 or older, by age and gender. 2011. Source: www.thebiganswer.info

Major depressive episode in the past year among adults aged 18 or older, by age and gender. 2011. Source www.thebiganswer.info

Indicators rating in functional and dysfunctional families according to the ‘Kinetic Family Drawing’ method. Source: www.researchgate.net

Indicators rating in functional and dysfunctional families according to the 'Kinetic Family Drawing' method. Source www.researchgate.net

It is no wonder then that children who come from dysfunctional homes may feel like their families do not like them especially when they are on the short end of the stick – receiving insults and never praised for good work and effort.


There will be signs that your family doesn’t like you. And no, you are not being paranoid. Perhaps the first sign you will notice is that you are being – ever so slightly – ostracized. You will notice that your family leaves you out of small activities such as chatting. When you walk in, the conversation dies and you may even get the feeling that they don’t want you there. If you leave, the conversation and laughter resume. But if you decide to stay, you will notice your family starts to walk away and go into another room where they will begin their chatter again. Instances like these are meant to alienate you from your family and are usually being awarded by the adults in your family, if you have younger or older siblings, chances are they are doing this to stay likable to the parent. These small actions will have you wondering and feeling like your family hates you – but you cannot be sure or bring it up because then you will be called paranoid and that will create room for mockery and ridicule.

Over time, however, your family will start to show you blatantly that they do not like you – especially if you decide to stop playing into their little mind games. When they realize they can no longer control your actions, your dysfunctional family will start attacking your emotions. They will do and say things that are hurtful to your face – or spread harmful and hurtful rumors about you to other people. All this is an attempt to break you and bring you down to their level – because misery loves company.


So what do you do when your family hates you? If you are still a minor, living with a family that is constantly putting you down and making your life hard can be quite hard to escape. We would suggest that you get away from them from time to time – and especially during school holidays. Go and visit your aunt or uncle who understands and supports you, go to sleepovers at your best friend’s house, spend your time at the school library or taking extracurricular activities. Spend as much time away from your family as possible – because soon enough you are going to head off to college and you won’t have to see your family as much. However, in the meantime, if things get too much for you to handle and it starts affecting your mental health, you should always talk to a trusted adult or your school counselor.

On the other hand, if you are an adult and you find yourself thinking and wondering “my family hates me, what do I do?” then you have many options and the obvious one being cutting your family off completely from your life. If you have the money and means to take care of yourself, then it would be very easy for you to leave your family behind and cut off all contact with them – if that’s what you want to do.


When you find out that your family hates you it can be quite disheartening. You will probably want answers as to why your family hates you – and if you are a child, you will want to find ways to appease them even after the fact. Here are a few things you can do when you confirm that your family hates you

1. Ask them why they hate you

At this point, what do you have to lose, right? If you have reasons to believe that your family hates you, you may need to know why they hate you. What could you have possibly done for them to treat you so badly? Although, it should be noted that 9 times out of 10 you did not do anything wrong. Sometimes your family will hate you because you are unlike them in every way – you don’t look like them, or speak like them, or act like them. You may even have a different sexual preference than they do, or define sexuality differently. What they act towards you is an internalized self-hatred. They look at you and they are reminded of everything they are not – and they resent that you are comfortable being so different. This does not necessarily mean your family members are bad people, but that they have internalized so much negative energy they don’t even know when it is coming out and harming others.

Finding out why your family hates you will help you decide on what you want to do. Either if you want to help and fix your family or if you want to leave them all behind and get a fresh start with your life.

2. Go to therapy

If you decide that you want to fix your family, then you and your family need to go to therapy so that you can get to the root of your problems and start to try and fix your family. You can decide to either have group therapy or individual sessions or according to the recommendation of your therapist.

However, if you and your family decide not to mend the broken relationship, you should still go to therapy on your own. Chances are that you have also internalized so much anger and hate towards your family over the years from constant mockery and ridicule. If you want to live a happy life and create healthy bonds with other people, you will need to undo, unlearn, and let go of a lot of negative things you harbor within yourself – whether you are aware of it or not.


  • “Mom, Dad, this is for you. Every time you called me ungrateful, stupid, selfish, a brat, and all the other things you would tell me. I would come into my room and cry myself to sleep. I started to believe what you told me, and now I hate myself”
  • “I’m sorry I couldn’t make you any prouder of me. I’m sorry I didn’t turn out the way you wanted me to be. I’m sorry that I am a disappointment to you”
  • “Just because I am strong enough to handle pain, doesn’t mean that I deserve it”
  • “If I treated you the way you treat me; you would hate me”
  • “When I am a Buddhist my family hates me. When I’m the Buddha they love me” – Frank Hall.


  • What do you do when your parents hate you?

If you feel like your parents hate you, and you are within their care and dependent on them, you should try and minimize your interactions with them. This will help you stay out of their way and avoid hearing the negative things they will have to say about you. This will be good for your mental health and stability. Unfortunately, until you are much older, you cannot escape your toxic parents – but you can limit your interaction with them.

  • Is it okay to dislike your family?

Yes, it is perfectly okay, and quite common, to dislike your family. You may dislike how they treat(ed) you or how they blamed you for everything or how they never take accountability for putting so much pressure on you or mocking you. You are human, after all, and let’s be honest you would dislike anyone (family or not) who disregarded your whole humanity for the most part of your life. Disliking your family will also help you set healthy boundaries between you and them and let them know what you can accept in your circle and what you will not tolerate. This is a good precedent to set if you want to still have your family in your life for the rest of your life.

  • How do you fix a broken family?

It is not up to you to fix your broken family. Fixing only works when both parties are willing to put in work. if this is the case, you and your family will need to go through extensive therapy to get to the root of all your problems and eventually get to a place where you can all apologize to each other and be able to forgive one another.

  • Why does my family hate me so much?

When you feel like your whole family hates you, there may be a couple of reasons why. Although these reasons do not justify their being nasty towards you. Some of the reasons why your family doesn’t like you could be: you have different [socioeconomic/political] views than they do, you dress differently, religious views, you go against the status quo, your gender, your sexuality, and your beliefs. The more different you are from your family, the more you will feel alienated and wonder why everyone in your family hates you. The important thing is to always stay true to yourself and have people around you who understand you and share the same values and beliefs as you who you can talk to and connect with. To quote Bobby Singer from Supernatural “Family don’t end with blood” – you can create your own family with the people you meet and connect with throughout your life.


In conclusion, coming from a dysfunctional household can lead you to believe that your family hates you. Oftentimes, dysfunctional families tend to use one family member as a scapegoat. This means that they dump all their negative thoughts and feelings on this one member in order for them to feel better about themselves and maintain the toxic and dysfunctional family dynamic. If you feel like your family hates you, chances are you are their scapegoat. It is up to you to either want to mend relations with your family or let them go and go your own way once you are old enough to do so. However, whatever you decide, make sure you get yourself some much-needed therapy so that you can be able to build happy, healthy, and meaningful bonds with other people.





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