“My husband refuses to talk about problems. What do I do?”
All relationship coaches and counselors ask one question when they deal with clients on an issue or issues facing any relationship.
They ask: “Have you tried talking to him or her about this?”
Even our friends and family who are neither coaches nor counselors always advise we should “talk, talk and talk.”
It is because, in every relationship, especially marriage, communication is king.
They are right because in trying to work things out in a marriage or whatever relationship we find ourselves in, the first step is to know the problem.
To identify the problem, we have to express ourselves by talking.
Now, what happens if your husband refuses to talk about the problems in your marriage?
Do you ever feel like you are talking to a brick wall when you talk to your husband about the problems in your marriage?
Does it seem like the more you press him to discuss the problem, the more he withdraws and becomes distant?
You try to communicate, but you meet with one or two-word responses, or he may make one or two excuses before walking away.
You keep wondering why he doesn’t want to face these issues with you and get them solved once and for all.
The truth is it isn’t uncommon for one spouse to shy away from discussing the problems in marriage.
It isn’t unusual for a wife to want to discuss marital issues, and the husband withdraws and acts defensively or even denies the existence of any problems to avoid discussing them.
The questions that beg for answers in the mind and heart of every woman who faces this problem are:
- Why doesn’t he want to talk about these problems with me?
- What do I do to get him to stay with me so we talk things through and resolve our problems as a couple?
My Husband Refuses To Talk About Problems: 6 Reasons Why
Here are six reasons your husband refuses to talk about problems with you.
1) He is at a loss for words.
Simply put, he can’t speak the right words to convey his emotions and feelings.
Blame it on the culture or parenting style (whichever) that doesn’t allow children, especially the boy child, to cry or express how he feels or what’s going on in his mind.
They did not teach these boys to put a name to their emotions and express how their feelings.
They grow into men who struggle to find the right words to express themselves but who find it easier to say nothing in the face of overwhelming issues.
2) He’s afraid of being misunderstood.
Perhaps as a child, a teenager, or a young adult, your husband has tried expressing a feeling or an emotion to either his parents or a parent figure in his life, but he met with harsh criticisms and severe judgment.
They misunderstood his attempt to talk about his feelings.
You know that experiences like this create lasting impressions in the life and future of a child.
It’s also possible he has tried to connect with you and talk to you, but you judged and misunderstood his intentions.
So, to avoid the deep hurt of being judged and misunderstood, he withdraws and refuses to talk about problems.
To him, not talking about the problems is safer.
At least this way, he will feel protected from being misunderstood.
3) He is sulking and wants you to pay more attention to him.
As ridiculous as this sounds, your husband may refuse to talk about problems because he wants you to notice him and pay more attention to him.
“But this is childish,” you say.
“If anything’s the matter, shouldn’t he just talk about it instead of sulking like a child?”
They say that children sulk while adults talk, but you and I know that in this age and time, there are still sulking adults, and your husband may be one of them.
4) He is upset with you.
Something may have happened between you two or you may have done something wrong to him, and he still feels upset about it.
His silence is a way to let you know he’s still offended or hurt by what you did or what happened between you two.
While it isn’t the best approach, it’s also possible he’s waiting to feel better or be in the right mind to talk about what happened between you two or what you did to get him upset.
5) He doesn’t wish to make the situation worse.
Perhaps he has attempted to talk about issues, and you became infuriated, or he said the wrong words that escalated the situation.
Either way, he refused to talk about issues because he is scared of making matters worse.
6) He’s punishing you for something.
As bad as this mode of punishment is, many men punish their wives by not ignoring them and refusing to communicate or talk about issues in their homes.
It is true, especially if you are the type who loves to talk and trash out problems as soon as they arise.
Or if you are the kind of woman who enjoys spending quality time with your husband and he knows that if he refuses to talk to you, you would be affected by his silence.
Now that you’ve seen why your husband refuses to discuss, read on to know what you can do to get him to talk about problems with you.
1) Begin with a positive attitude
Resist the temptation to complain.
Instead, let him know how much you love and value your marriage and thank him for agreeing to talk things with you.
It will help him to relax and not be defensive.
2) Keep your language polite.
Make an effort to speak gently to your husband.
Be careful not to use words that will make him withdraw or shut down.
You’re much more likely to end the conversation gently if you start gently.
Remember to use “I feel” statements instead of accusatory statements such as, “You did this to me,” or “You did that the other day”.
3) Pay attention to your body language.
A hostile posture, tone, or expression is likely to make things worse as your choice of words.
Don’t yell or point at him, and hold your body relaxed.
4) Take it slow.
Give him some time.
He may find it difficult to express himself, or he’s upset or hurt.
Be patient with him.
5) Avoid assumptions and conclusions.
Ask neutral questions that will enlighten you and expose what’s on his mind to you.
Ask questions that will help you to understand the reason behind some of his words and actions.
6) Find support.
Despite your efforts to reach out to your husband, despite your gentle attitude and patience, your husband may still refuse to talk about issues in your home.
If this becomes the case, feel free to seek the help and support of a trained relationship or a marriage coach or counselor.
They can help you to discover the reason behind your husband’s refusal to talk and provide a safe space to work through and resolve your problems.