If someone secretly dislikes you, they’ll usually display these 10 subtle behaviors

There’s a thin line between being subtly disliked and openly despised.

The difference lies in the signs. When someone openly hates you, they won’t hesitate to show it. But when someone secretly dislikes you, their behavior could be more discreet, often cloaked in misleading expressions.

Spotting these hidden signs can be tricky, but don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. I’m going to share with you 10 subtle behaviors that people often display when they secretly dislike you.

Let’s get started. 

1) Avoiding eye contact

Eye contact is a fundamental aspect of human communication. It’s a non-verbal cue that conveys interest, attention, and respect.

When someone is openly hostile towards you, they might glare at you or avoid your gaze entirely. But when they secretly dislike you, the signs may not be as obvious.

One of these subtle signs could be avoiding eye contact. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll never look at you. Rather, they might seem to look past you or around you, as if they’re trying to avoid giving you their full attention.

Remember, however, that not everyone who avoids eye contact dislikes you. Some people are just naturally shy or uncomfortable with making direct eye contact. But when combined with other behaviors on this list, it might be a sign that they aren’t your biggest fan.

2) Short responses

Communication is the lifeblood of any relationship. And the way someone communicates with you can reveal a lot about how they feel towards you.

Let me share a personal example. I used to have a friend, let’s call her Sarah. We were close and used to chat about everything under the sun. Then, one day, I noticed a shift. Sarah started giving me short, curt responses. Our previously lively conversations gradually turned into a series of one-word answers and dismissive nods.

At first, I thought she was just busy or having an off day. But as days turned into weeks, I realized that her behavior was consistent only with me. It was clear to me that something had changed.

Upon reflection, I understood that Sarah’s short responses were her subtle way of expressing her disinterest and discomfort in our conversations.

If you notice someone consistently giving you short or vague responses, it could be a sign that they secretly dislike you. 

3) Body language

Body language is a powerful indicator of a person’s feelings, often revealing more than their words. One particularly telling sign of someone’s discomfort or dislike is crossed arms.

Crossed arms are commonly associated with defensiveness or closed-off attitudes. It’s a subconscious way for people to protect themselves and create a barrier between them and others.

Interestingly, studies show that our brains are wired to prefer open body language, interpreting it as a sign of trustworthiness and friendliness. On the flip side, closed body language, like crossed arms, can come off as unapproachable or hostile.

4) Lack of interest in your life

Connections are built on mutual interest and shared experiences. When someone shows genuine interest in your life, it’s a sign that they value your relationship.

But what if they don’t?

A subtle sign that someone secretly dislikes you is their lack of interest in your life. They might not ask how your day was, or they may show little to no curiosity about your interests, experiences, or opinions.

This isn’t about expecting everyone to be fascinated by every aspect of your life. It’s about noticing when someone consistently avoids engaging with you on a personal level. Their lack of interest could be their subtle way of maintaining emotional distance.

5) Rarely initiates contact

In any kind of relationship, be it friendship or professional, initiating contact indicates a willingness to engage and connect.

But what if someone always waits for you to make the first move?

A person who rarely initiates contact might be subtly indicating their disinterest or discomfort. Whether it’s starting a conversation, sending a text, or suggesting a hangout, if they’re always waiting for you to make the first move, it could be because they secretly dislike you.

Of course, some people are naturally more reserved or hesitant to initiate. However, if they’re initiating contact with others but not with you, it could be a red flag.

So, pay attention to who’s doing the initiating in your interactions. It could reveal more than you think.

6) They exclude you

There’s a certain pain that comes with exclusion, a silent message that says, “You’re not wanted here.”

If someone consistently excludes you from gatherings, conversations or projects, it’s not just disappointing – it could be a sign they secretly dislike you.

You might notice them planning events without inviting you, or perhaps they seem to ‘forget’ to include you in group emails or chats. They might even talk about shared experiences in front of you, experiences that you were pointedly not a part of.

Exclusion can cut deep, because it’s not always about being liked. It’s about feeling valued and included. So if you consistently find yourself on the outside looking in, it might be more than just an oversight. It could be a subtle sign of their true feelings towards you.

7) They interrupt you

We all have moments when we’re eager to share our thoughts and end up unintentionally interrupting others. But what if it becomes a pattern?

I remember a time in my life when I was constantly interrupted by someone I thought was a friend. It seemed like every time I started to speak, she would cut me off mid-sentence to share her own thoughts or experiences. At first, I brushed it off, thinking she was just overly enthusiastic. But as time went on, I couldn’t help but feel like she was trying to undermine me, to make sure her voice was heard over mine.

Constant interruption is more than just bad manners; it can be a subtle form of disrespect. It sends the message that your thoughts and words are less important than theirs.

If someone consistently interrupts you while you’re speaking, it might be a sign that they secretly dislike you. Remember, everyone deserves to be heard and respected in a conversation.

8) They’re overly polite

Politeness is usually seen as a sign of respect and courtesy. However, there can be instances where it serves as a mask for hidden feelings of dislike.

Yes, you read that right. Over-politeness, especially when it feels forced or insincere, can sometimes be a sign that someone is hiding their true feelings towards you.

Think about it. When we genuinely like someone, we tend to relax around them, letting our guard down and showing our authentic selves. But when we dislike someone, we might put up a facade of politeness to maintain social decorum and avoid conflict.

If you notice someone being excessively polite with you, especially when their behavior towards others is more relaxed and casual, it might be an indication that they secretly dislike you. As always, context is key, so consider this sign alongside others before drawing any conclusions.

9) They keep conversations surface level

Deep, meaningful conversations are the cornerstone of strong relationships. They create bonds, foster understanding, and establish trust.

But what happens when someone avoids delving deeper and keeps all conversations with you at a surface level?

This could be a sign that they are keeping their emotional distance, a subtle indication they may not be fond of you. They might stick to small talk or general topics, avoiding personal stories or sharing thoughts and feelings.

This doesn’t necessarily mean they’re being rude or unfriendly. In fact, they might appear quite sociable. But the lack of depth and personal connection in your conversations could suggest they don’t feel comfortable opening up to you.

10) They don’t make time for you

Time is a precious commodity. We all have busy lives and numerous commitments. But when we care about someone, we make an effort to fit them into our schedule.

If someone consistently doesn’t make time for you, it might be a subtle sign they secretly dislike you. No matter how many times you suggest meeting up or catching up, they always seem to have a reason not to.

People make time for what’s important to them. If you’re not a priority in their schedule, it could be because they’re not particularly fond of you. However, don’t take it personally. It’s their loss, not yours.

Final thoughts: It’s about understanding, not judgement

Human behavior is a complex tapestry woven from threads of thoughts, emotions, and experiences. It’s not always easy to decipher, but understanding it can help us navigate our relationships more effectively.

When it comes to discerning if someone secretly dislikes you, remember that these signs are clues, not definitive proof. They’re meant to guide your perception, not dictate it. People are nuanced and their behaviors can have a multitude of reasons.

Renowned psychologist Carl Jung once said, “Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” If you notice these behaviors in someone, it could be an opportunity for self-reflection. Could there be something in your behavior that’s causing a rift? Is there room for improvement or change?

Conversely, if someone does secretly dislike you – remember that it’s more a reflection of them than of you. Your worth isn’t defined by how others perceive you, but by how you perceive yourself.

As we navigate the labyrinth of human interactions, let’s strive for understanding over judgement, empathy over criticism and self-love over external validation.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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