Dealing with someone who’s almost never happy can be tough. They may expect a lot, from themselves and from you, and seem to always want more.
At work or at home, you may feel you’ve done well, but they might change what they think ‘doing well’ means.
You could be in a relationship with this kind of person, and it probably didn’t happen overnight.
At the beginning, they might have seemed okay with a lot, but you might have noticed they were a bit picky or hard to please. At first, they didn’t fuss at you, and it seemed like you were both in agreement.
You might have even agreed with them when they complained about other things, which may have made them think it was okay to keep going. But at some point, you started to be the one they complained about.
To figure out if you’re with someone who always wants more, think about these signs.
Always Finding Something
Wrong Some partners are quick to find things to complain about. These are the people who will make a big deal about a tiny problem, like a drawer that doesn’t close perfectly or a small mark on the carpet. And if you did something they see as a mistake, they won’t let you forget it.
Never Fully Pleased
When partners like this do give a compliment, they often follow it with a negative. They might say:
- “Thank you for fixing the television set. I hope next time you can figure out how to add the cable channels as well.”
- “That concert sounds great. We’ll see how well we can see the stage from the seats you selected.”
It’s best not to argue with these kinds of comments. They may not be happy no matter what you say, so sometimes it’s better to not say anything.
Not Happy With
Anything Someone who’s rarely happy with you is likely the same in other parts of their life. For example, a study by Jiseon Ahn in 2023 showed that people who are very self-focused, manipulative, or unfeeling tend to cause trouble, wanting to get back at others or leave really harsh online reviews.
Finding Good in the Bad
On a positive note, a study by Scott Gershwer in 2022 found that couples who stick together through tough times can end up feeling closer to each other, especially when they realize they can depend on just each other.
Listening Beyond the Complaints
Listening to what a demanding partner says, the words they use, and what they complain about can tell you a lot.
If you decide to stay with them, remember you deserve to be treated well. You don’t have to get into every argument. Just listen. If you don’t react, they can’t keep complaining forever.
With patience and maybe help from a therapist, you might figure out what’s really making them unhappy, and it may not be about you at all.