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Silent Treatment

Discussion in 'Married Life' started by newwife, Apr 28, 2019.

  1. SinghManisha

    SinghManisha Platinum IL'ite

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    Have you tried not asking him if he is hungry ? He sounds like he is a perfectly capable adult that can warm food for himself.

     
  2. MindVoice

    MindVoice Silver IL'ite

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    Hi OP! My heart goes out to you. Silent treatment is a horrible thing to face.. Having been on the receiving end here, your post makes me very sad - it is like a mirror to me.
    Read again and again what Ddream and soulful in particular said.

    There is a very important concept here. It matters less why your husband is giving you the silent treatment. What matters is your response to it. You need to establish that it is not acceptable. And you can effectively stop it only if you value your own self enough. That it makes you angry is encouraging. But work on that anger. Your anger is an indicator of your boundaries being crossed - be aware, and respond in a way that is true to yourself. When your husband behaves in a way that is unacceptable, he must face the consequences.
    Right now, the only consequence he faces is..... nothing? Or worse, he gets you to submit to him. Is this the consequence you want for his poor behaviour? Think. Get out of your personal situation. What do you think a woman should do when her husband does A B C? You may actually want to write it down, to make a strategy.

    A great example of how to respond!

    Do not go behind him/after him.. if he gives you silent treatment, he is basically saying I don't want to involve with you. So don't involve with him. Don't be like "Even if you push me away, I will keep behind you, caring for you, warming your food/taking care of your stuff" etc. Teach yourself about setting boundaries and consequences. "When you ignore me, I will go about my own stuff". Let him face the natural consequences of distancing oneself from one's spouse. Importantly, do it without anger at him - the most important thing here is we are not reacting to him, but responding. The boundary is for YOU and your wellbeing/happiness (not to punish him).

    My heart goes out to you, OP. This is my life too, for 6 months every year. I can feel your pain.
    But why are you walking behind them in the mall, OP? If he walks off with your daughter, let them go! If they won't wait for you just walk away yourself wherever you want to go. Once he gets out, you go where you want to go in the mall. Tell him to call you when they are done.
    Spend quality time with your daughter when you two are alone and he is off at work - and do the washing feeding etc when he is around. When he takes your daughter away from you, see if you can enjoy your own free time!

    The thing is, OP, you are trying to be - just like me - a good wife: accommodating, adjusting, trying to make things work (eg: when he thaws a little, you try to be normal/nice to build the relationship - my problem too)...It is nice, it is what most people advice in marriage...but you can't have a relationship if YOU are being disregarded in it...
    So do that. Honour yourself. Respect yourself, and carry yourself with your due dignity. Lead life how you want to - don't depend on him (emotionally atleast).
    This is not about his behaviour. This is about your response to his behaviour.
    This is not about changing him or the silent treatment. It is about you having your own life despite how he behaves.
    You two have had this equation going on for so long. It is making you unhappy. Change your behaviour and response to suit you. That is all you should focus on right now, for the time being.

    P.S: When you start changing your response, he will get angry. Very angry. Because his tactics are backfiring. And he will try to dominate you more. Tantrums, fights, more silent treatment. Stay strong, weather the storm. When he realises you mean business and that you can't be toyed around, something will change. And we can go forward from thereon..
     
  3. deepa1979

    deepa1979 New IL'ite

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    My husband used to do the same.He has a big EGO and for any fight he will do the silent treatment and very stubborn even if i ask sorry for no fault of mine.
    Finally i had to go and beg him and cry him to forgive me and things will be back to normal. This kept repeating and i was fed up .

    Recently we had a fight and he gave silent treatment. I decided enough is enough.
    I told him " see i am ready to talk to you, but if you dont want to talk to me i respect that decision. So if you want anything just ask me, i will not keep asking you for food or anything. We will be like roommates . i am ready to forgive and forget when you are ready talk to me"

    He thought i will go and beg for him to talk in 2 days but i continued for 1 week without talking unnecessarily.Just made food will keep and go , he will serve himself . announce that coffee is ready and he will pick himself. ofcourse more work for us as nothing is shared by him and i beared for 1 week.

    This continued for a week and by end of a week i could see that he is struggling and waiting to talk to me. still ego is holding him.
    Then i went to him and said sorry can we talk again? without begging and straight face and he was almost in tears.

    Since then, whenever we fight, if he gives silent treatment i will do same and he is talking to me in about an hour .

    Try it hopefully it may help you
     
  4. DDream

    DDream Platinum IL'ite

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    This is quite similar to what I did long back, during the first few years of marriage. Its also matching with @soulful's tips. My husband generally take one or two weeks to cool down. Most of the time I don't have any clue on why he is silent. I used to ask him, but he continue in silent mode and will never say why he is silent or what the issue is. It was tough as I was not used to it. One time I gave back the same medicine. I will cook and eat what I want, if he want he has to eat what is there or cook for himself like roommates. No service. I continues silent mode from my side too. He didn't give up. He keep on doing it. It was tough in the beginning. But then kind of used to it . It continued for many months (yes). I realized its weakening our marriage. To be honest, its not good for us too. But still I didn't give up till he come to me and talk. Then he asked me what you want ? Are you done with marriage. Then I told him that I thought you like silence so I respected it. Now you might have realized how I feel when you do the same. But you should realize that its emotional abuse. If you have any issue, communicate with me why you are upset. I am not a mind reader. He said he would have been back to normal if I talk normal. I said I tried, but i have a limit.

    I like to face issues head on, discuss it and find solutions. But he cannot handle that or any other stress. So avoid it. This was the main reason. Anyway, he stopped going on silent mode like he used to, slowly it reduced. Whenever he do that, there will be no service or acknowledgement from my side. After having kids, I noted that going to silent mode will make me work harder. Why should I do every thing. Its his kids too. I should be smart. So what I do is I text or convey topics related to kids or ask him help directly, even if he don't respond. It work most of the time. Even if he don't talk he will do. If he respond, then I treat him better. Most of time it ends with a silent hug or touch from his side indicating he gave up his ego.Its like having a treaty again.

    This is how he learned that I don't mind even a bit. For the last many years he gave reply if I ask something but still show distance during those periods. I gave him enough time to cool down, but talk and behave as usual as much as I can. It allow him to be back on track within one or two days. But I treat him like husband only when he treat me like wife. It may work or not for others. It depends on the couple and issues. Every person is different. Its ideal to talk, solve all issues and go to sleep with a happy & peaceful mind.

    If you think you did some thing wrong, good to apologize. If not, completely ignore it till they cool down and ready to talk. Try to listen and understand the issue if one can. My understanding is that silent treatment affect both parties. It is not good. But when one stop responding to this instead of going after the other one crying, seeking forgiveness, they loose the control or power they are seeking. Taking that power away is the key to solve it.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2019
  5. sunshine1970

    sunshine1970 Gold IL'ite

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    My husband has been doing this for years. He knows it drives me nuts when he withholds affection, chatter, care etc. This time I decided enough is enough. I sent him text and said that I am respecting his distance, I don't deserve to be ignored,punished. That I am available to talk and I leave the ball in his court. But I am done trying to initiate conversation or getting him to talk to me. He started talking in about an hour after the text. Key is, first time I made him own his behaviour. I said we are not talking because you refuse to talk to me, I am available here, but I can't force you. I made him responsible and also responsible for the next step, which is he had to reach out. This was a big break through, otherwise he ignores me for days. He had already ignored me for two days, but this time I had enough.
     
  6. ramya8085

    ramya8085 Bronze IL'ite

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    I agree with @senorita2019 . this is typical power play. part of issue, is you also treated him like a baby.

    he does because he thinks he can.

    can he do the same in office, just because someone sent some email or wrote some code incorrectly , can he stop talking to that person for days. he will be fired for ignoring his responsibility.
     
    hermitcrab and senorita2019 like this.
  7. newwife

    newwife Senior IL'ite

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    Thank you @DDream and @soulful @deepa1979 @SinghManisha ...
    Your advises are very helpful

    It’s now 2 weeks of silent treatment and he is going strong. It has become a nice vacation for him I think.
    The whole weekend he was watching Netflix movies back to back . Whenever he would see I am done cooking , he would get up fill Up his plate,eat and then rinse his plate and put in dishwasher . Other than that he sat on couch all weekend and watch sports and movies while I was cooking , cleaning the kitchen, taking care of little one , cleaning up all toys after her , laundry , grocery etc . I feel like at this point why would he talk to me ? It’s almost a vacantion for him from any responsibilities

    I tried not doing dishes one night and not cleaning kitchen . He just rinsed one pot in morning that he needed to warm food and left eferhotng as is .

    Will this behavior ever completely stop ? It’s such a waste of precious days of life . When I see some couples talking and laughing and caring , I feel so sad at my seemingly happily married life which actually behind the scenes is a pathetic sad existence

     
  8. GlobetrotterG

    GlobetrotterG Silver IL'ite

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    Do you know the below answer for this for sure?

    • What is the grudge he is holding against you? Can you try to get this answer from some of his casual discussions?

    To quote from my story, whenever i had a heated argument about my In-laws, he was very silent and he neither acknowledged nor fought the verbal discussio,. But , later i figured out that he did not like me even commenting about my in-laws the way i did comment. Yeah, i agree it was bad. My point is guys take some grudges to heart.
    • Is he using something to divert your attention from something that he wants to hide. I cannot comment on this but i have heard from one of my friends that her hubby used to walk out of home and wouldn't return till late night for trivial fights. And yeah, she figured out he was having a affair :(, used this fights as a reason to spend time outside home.
    After reading your post, i do think your experience might be because of point 1 most probably
     
  9. Sweety2016

    Sweety2016 Gold IL'ite

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    Dear newwife,

    Why do you stay quite on the first hand? Had I been in your position, hell would have broken loose! How come he can sit nonchalantly with no empathy and continue watching movies when you toil hard for the family?

    What I would do in your situation is

    1. Start a dialogue with no crying or begging...In a very formal tone.
    2. if dialogue doesn't happen, no cooking, cleaning nothing basically..total boycott of household activities..I will just prepare food for toddler and eat out at the canteen.
    3. Be extra cheerful with the toddler. Take her out without informing or announcing
    4. I will grab every opportunity to show him that he is not my everything and that my happiness does not depend on him. Its difficult in the beginning but with time you can master it and get control over life.
    5. At any cost, dont utter the word 'sorry' just to ease the situation if you are not at fault. Develop that much ego! Its good for you and your self worth.
    6. Do dress up well and dont walk around with a sullen face. Be cheerful to others and show him what he is missing on in the real life.
    7. Even after all this, if he is genuinely loves you, cares about you, likes you, he will come around for a negotiation and a talk. If then too he stays aloof, it means there is something more serious than what we assume as simple ego battle.
    8. Strip him off the power you have given him in all possible ways....Forget about all couples posing and smiling. Every life is different.. When you are down look out for things that makes you feel privileged & not the other way down..See about poverty, recent terrorist attacks, global warming-climate change, health hazards etc..you will feel grateful for being alive this minute! So dont waste your precious days for your H..He doesnt deserve it.
     
  10. DDream

    DDream Platinum IL'ite

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    See, he didn't loose anything by silent treatment, except an unhappy wife. He should. Have a talk with him with a cool and composed manner and ask him to stop his drama and discuss with you why he is doing this. If he dont respond to you. Tell him, you will treat him like husband only when he is ready to talk like your husband. Tell him you respect his silence and is ready to allow him to continue and but he cannt escape from his normal duties. Also you dont have time for this drama. Its childishness, an adult can discuss and solve any issues. Send a list of household jobs he has to do (see if sending text work, he can be silent but should do household jobs, a room mate dont have to cook for him). Keep your kids in his lap, let him take care. you go out and enjoy. go for a walk at least. or talk as if nothing happened. Have you tried any of these?

    You cook what you like and eat, not for him. No service. Enjoy your time too. Take your own time to do household jobs. Try the tips @Sweety2016 and others mentioned above. Try one after the other and see what works for you. Don't go after him asking for forgiveness if you haven't done anything wrong. Wait till he is ready to comeback and talk.

    I suggest you to stop talking about MIL/SIL or all those issues in future. If he starts, tell him you are not interested to talk about those and you are not living with them. Complaining about them wont work and create more issues in your marriage.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019

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