From Hate to Love in 11 Steps

By Dr. Cynthia Lea Clark, Psy.D.

Although I am going through these steps via a woman, these can be used for a man as well, although they tend to be more into the physical than women, they will go through these phases (many times in shorter time) to go from hate to love.

Not all of our relationships start off on the right foot. Some don’t start off at all. Those we call the hate relationships, or at the very least, intense dislike. However, these apparently non relationships can go from hate to love, but how?

Before I go through the 11 steps that will take our heroine from hate to love let’s look at why there is this hate.

1. Family history or the hero hurt the her family in some way such as foreclosing on the farm or such.

2. Sheer arrogance.

3. He destroyed her business.

4. Previous love gone bad.

5. Unrequited love.

6. She thinks he did a dirty deed to her or her family.

7. Lies by him or by others about him.

8. Cheating.

9. Fear (real or imagined).

Our hate to love relationship starts with your history either real or imagined , or via reputation. Then….we have…

Step 1. Contact with hostility, negativity. Contact in step one is unpleasant, hostile, negative. There may be anger, doubt. If contact has to be pleasant for appearances it is forced and barely cordial/fake. It may consist of more than one contact in this phase, all negative.

Step 2. Contact with begrudgingly admitting to herself of attraction to him. Still hostile, but she finds themselves feeling attracted to him, and angry at herself for this attraction, after all he is the enemy, so to speak if not literally.

Step 3. Contact, with more intense attraction or attraction dissonance. Damn I am attracted to this person, but I hate him, but he sure is hot. She begins to fantasize about him then feels guilty. Still cold in attitude around him. Anger may be turned inside to herself as the attraction dissonance increases.

In steps 1 through 3, contact is not physical rather proximity, such as a board room, a meeting, an office, a trial, bank, not necessarily an adversarial situation.

Step 4. Intervening forces/influences. An outside force, forces her or them (if the hate/dislike is mutual) to put aside her/their hate or dislike to work together for a greater good, or against a common enemy, or to solve a problem or one of he does something so grand, such as saves a life, rights a wrong, etc., such that she decides she should reevaluate her opinion. Intervening force could just be continuing contact that shows him to be human and a nice guy, not the evil man she had thought him to be. She begins to look at his positives traits. She beings to notice more about him, how he talks, the tones he uses, the words he uses.

Step 5. Reevaluation. Exactly as it sounds. The hero is looked at in a new light. Maybe they aren’t as bad, as evil as first thought, and damn they’re still hot. They do have good qualities.

Step 6. Real Communication. In this phase, they talk to each other like human beings. They begin to build trust, respect, acceptance. They enjoy each other’s company.

Step 7. Disclosure/sharing. Their new found friendship continues to grow with sharing of private information, confidences. They enjoy each other’s company.

Step 8. Passion. Their attraction grows as well, with a pure fascination, attraction, and sex.

Step 9. Intimacy. The passion combined with the trust and emotion to form an intimate bond.

Step 10. Mutual Dependency. They both give and receive in the relationship, fulfilling each other’s needs willingly. They find a natural bonding has occurred and feel good together.

Step 11. Commitment. They commit.

Step 8 and 9 can flip flop depending on the players. Intimacy can come before sex or after and depends on your characters.

And thus one goes from Hate to Love.