My Boyfriend Makes Me Feel Guilty for Saying No​

Written by: Maheen Asif – M.Sc (Clinical Psychology)

Last updated date : January 15, 2023

Does your boyfriend makes you feel guilty for saying “No”? Some of us tend to put our partner’s needs before our own out of a need to please. We don’t know how to say “no” because we want to reassure and make our boyfriend feel comfortable. One needs to be able to say “No” in a relationship, and it’s important to know why. Not being able to say “no” can be unfair to ourselves and the other person.

Many of you are afraid to say “no” in a relationship, even if you are too stressed, busy, or tired to take on anything else. If this is hard for you, you’re not alone. But you should learn not to feel guilty for saying no to their boyfriend or his requests. Not being able to can cause more stress, which can turn into resentment over time.

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Chapter 1:

Is It Okay In A Relationship To Say “No”?

There’s nothing wrong with saying “no” when you need to. This includes times when you just don’t have the energy to do everything or when you want to put yourself first. There are a lot of reasons why it’s important to know how to say “no.”

When You Say No, You Set Limits:

Boundaries show what you’re willing to do and how you want to be treated in a relationship. They are important for the way people interact with each other and for mental health.

Say No To Stress Limits:

Stress builds up when you take on too much or say yes to things you really don’t want to do. Stress is very bad for your health and well-being, especially if it lasts for a long time.  

Saying No Makes People Feel Less Angry:

If you say yes when you want to say no, you might start to dislike the person who asked. Even though it can be hard to say no, it can be good for the relationship in the long run.
Saying No Can Limit Regret:
If you say yes to things that aren’t in line with your goals or values, you might feel bad later. You’ll have more time and energy for the things that matter to you if you can tell people “no.”

Chapter 2:

How To Say No To Your Boyfriend Without Feeling Guilty?

Does your boyfriend make you feel guilty for saying ‘no’? You might be wondering how to say no without feeling guilty. You need to know why people feel guilty for saying no to their boyfriend to answer that.

Saying “no” may feel like an attack, like turning down the person. Most people don’t want to be the one who starts a fight. It makes you think of something bad. Or, they might think that they are the bad guy or girl. They might feel bad because they think they’ve let the person down. Or, they might worry that they won’t be liked or that people will think they don’t care or aren’t helpful. So, most people take the path with the least chance of conflict and do what others say.

Here are some good ways to tell someone “no” in a relationship;

Be Direct

If you decide to say you’ll get back to the person, be straightforward and don’t make any promises. If you give people the impression that you’ll probably say “yes” later, they’ll be more upset when you say “no.”

Don’t make excuses that aren’t good enough or hem and haw. This just gives the other person a chance to talk. Don’t wait or waste time, either. A direct no is always better than prolonging it by dilly-dallying, postponing it or leading him on. At first, your boyfriend might make you feel guilty for saying no, but in the long run, he will also like it if you are honest with him about how you feel. It will help him understand why you told him no as soon as possible.

For example, if you don’t want to accept his offer, it’s not a good answer to say, “Let me think about it.” Try to be direct, and if you think you need to, give a short explanation. But don’t feel like you have to. It’s best to say less.

Add A Compliment

Even though it’s better, to be honest, you don’t have to be rude or rub it in his face. If you do that, your boyfriend might make you feel guilty for saying no. Instead of being rude when you say no, just slip in a compliment. It’s better to say, “You’re a great person, but I’m not ready to marry you” than “No, I don’t want to marry you.”

Treat Them With Respect

It takes a lot to tell someone how you really feel. When someone tells you that they like you, it gives you power. The most important thing is not to abuse that power. Treat the other person with respect and kindness as much as you can. Think about your answer and pick your words carefully. Anyone, including you, could be in that situation.

No Excuses

If someone asks you for an explanation, remember that you don’t owe anyone. “It doesn’t work with my schedule” is a perfectly acceptable answer. Sentences like “But I don’t know you well enough” or “I’m too busy with work right now and don’t have time” tell the other person what to expect. Instead of hearing “I’m not interested,” all he hears is, “Let’s get to know each other, and then I’ll accept your proposal.” So making excuses is not the best way to get out of trouble. instead, learn to say no in a relationship.

Set Boundaries

People have trouble saying “no” sometimes because they haven’t taken the time to look at their relationships and figure out their roles. When you understand how things work and what your part is, your boyfriend won’t be able to make you feel guilty for saying no. You’ll see that your relationship is strong enough to handle your saying “no.”

Be Firm

If your boyfriend can’t accept your no and make you feel guilty, you know he’s probably not right for you or doesn’t respect you. Stand your ground and don’t feel like you have to give in just because the other person is upset. Not defensive or too sorry, and not rude. This shows that you care but that you won’t easily change your mind if you’re pushed.

Thank Him

Make sure you tell him you appreciate it. Make sure he knows how grateful you are that he wants to hang out with you since it’s a huge compliment. But also tell him that you can’t go anywhere because you want to take things slow.

Take Some Time

You can say “let me think about it and get back to you” if you don’t feel comfortable being firm or are dealing with a pushy boyfriend. This helps you get some time to look at your schedule and think about what you can do.

This plan also gives you time to decide if you want to make another commitment. Do a cost-benefit analysis to make a decision, and then tell them yes or no. Taking some time to think can help you avoid being pressured into over scheduling your life and taking on too much stress.

Chapter 3:

Take Away

It can be especially hard to say no to your boyfriend. Even though you might want to give in to your boyfriend’s wants or needs, it’s important to look out for your wants and needs in a relationship. This means sometimes setting limits and saying “no.” When you set limits, you help your boyfriend understand what is most significant to you. This can help them get to know you better, which will make your relationship stronger in the long run.

Since relationships are about giving and taking, saying no to your partner might mean making concessions. For example, you might refuse to spend the weekend with your boyfriend’s friends but agree to attend a work function with your boyfriend.

At Epsychonline, we have a series of courses on a variety of topics, including perfectionism and bullying for teens. These courses have been written keeping young people in mind, you might find value in them. Visit our Courses page to learn more.

"Quizzes and recommendations were very uselful" Donna

87 sections

6-Weeks Self-Paced

  • Educational Content
  • Quizzes
  • Self-reflection material
  • Suggestions & feedback
  • Worksheet, tips & tools to use

$9.00 $12.00

25% discount