No one wishes to find themselves in a love-hate relationship. When people realize they are, usually they are often already deeply ingrained in the relationship. At such time, there are only two options. One is to break away from the relationship. The other option is to repair a love-hate relationship. This is not an easy task, but if you are able to overcome the obstacles and regain balance to a relationship, you will have achieved much and your relationship can move to a new stage.

Take a few moments to a few weeks to have the concept ingrained in you that you are undertaking a fairly difficult task. Your attempt may not be successful, as it is a two-part effort that consists of your efforts and the efforts of your friend, relative or partner. Sit down with this person after you have done so. Ask that your partner separately address this issue. If your partner is willing you may work together to set up goals to address the love and hate in your relationship. However, each of you ought to develop a separate plan on your own prior to bringing your insights to the table for discussion again.

Understand that blame should not be attributed to the other person or factors outside of yourself. Do note that factors outside of yourself could be a trigger to love-hate episodes, but they are not necessarily the cause of them. By not attributing the cause to something outside yourself, you will take responsibility and control over any explosive emotions or fluctuations within the relationship.

Plot a plan of actions on a master plan. As with any goal in life, it is easier to accomplish that goal when you have smaller milestones to reach. To move you toward your goal, you should take the first step of deciding a time period for reaching your goal. In other words, how much time could you comfortably invest before your goal is reached? If you have been with your partner for more than six years, it is worth the while to invest an additional 12-month period in repairing your love-hate relationship. However, if you have only been in a relationship with a partner for less than six months, then you might not think it’s reasonable to dedicate another six months to repairing your relationship. This is a very personal decision, and it is up to you to make it. Ultimately, what is worthy to one person could mean very little to another.

After a duration is set, split that time period into workable proportions.

For example, with a six-month period, you may split it into six smaller increments of one month each. Set a milestone as the finish line for each time period. The first month’s milestone could be “refrain from injecting hateful elements into your everyday conversation with your partner.” Each milestone that follows should progress in level of difficulties as the one previous to it. Do not progress to the second milestone without completing the first milestone. If you cannot complete the first milestone within a reasonable period, like after one week at the expiration of your first milestone, re-evaluate immediately and determine if you could improve on your behavior or if your partner is willing to work together with you.

Solicit the help of several unbiased friends. Share your milestones with them so they can assist with keeping you accountable. When you feel that your relationship has returned to the love-hate state, these friends could serve as your cheerleaders, keeping your fuel burning while you tackle this task. Your friends could also analyze various situations for you so you can see different perspectives to the same situation. If these friends are truly unbiased, they could bring clarity to your plan of actions.

Maintain a busy work/study schedule. The goal is to diversify your attention to other more productive venues. They do not have to be work related or educational. As long as they promote personal growth and consume much of the time on your schedule, they are suitable activities to serve as a diversion. This is crucial to diminishing the impact of a love-hate relationship because staying busy with other things will bring objectivity and leveled emotions to the relationship. When excessive energy is exhausted, you will maintain a fairer assessment of situations as well, which can reduce emotionally charged episodes. Also, for romantic relationships, refrain from mistaking passion as an essential part of a love relationship. Excessive passion could lead to possessiveness, and possessiveness could lead to extreme fluctuation of emotions like in a love-hate relationship.

For romantic relationships, consider a short vacation where the main objective of the trip is to identify

  1. 1) the purpose of your relationship;
  2. 2) the triggers to your love-hate fluctuations;
  3. 3) the ways your partner could help reduce love-hate episodes;
  4. 4) goals you and your partner could mutually achieve through this relationship/growth opportunities.

After you have successfully answered these questions in a comforting and neutral environment, write the answers on post-it notes visible to yourself at your work desk or in your PDA/mobile phone and keep the objectives in a log entry in your journal. Carry the journal with you at all times. Before leaving on a date or meeting your partner, review the answers to yourself. If you are diligent, review the answers daily.