Yes, every story has a villain. It’s a must. The main character needs someone – or something – to fight against. However I think one of the first things most beginner writers should realize is before the story-villain there’s another villain. A more important villain.
Discard your love for your main character. Discard your passion for your protagonists. Yes, they are fantastic people and they came from your soul, but guess what. You are not their parent. You are not the cool sibling or aunt/uncle.
You’ve created this wonderful life. Now tear them apart. Pit them against their greatest fears. Throw them against a wall and watch them climb, throwing every possible obstacle in their path.
Be mean. Be vicious. Be sadistic. Be the villain! The villain of your story is just your vessel. Your pawn. A tool in your toolbox.
Afterall, your beloved protagonist will only shimmer as brightly as you want them to once they have overcome all of the obstacles you have pitted against them. You’re doing them a favor really.
Need a new story element? Just sit back and ask yourself: “How can I be mean to my character this time?”