Relationships And The Silent Treatment

  1. The Silent Treatment
  2. Expression of Anger
  3. Moving Forward

Relationships and the Silent Treatment

One of our readers E. Mailed a question about a friend who uses the "silent treatment." The reader wanted to understand what this was all about. Here is a continued and longer explanation of the answer already provided.

Does your husband, wife or intimate partner use the silent treatment when upset about something? The silent treatment is one of the most damaging relationship problems. Why is this? What is it?

Relationships and the Silent Treatment

The Silent Treatment

The silent treatment or "stonewalling" refers to someone who is letting you know that something is wrong without telling you why. If you ask if anything is wrong, you are met with silence. There is no explanation, no response of any kind, only stony silence.

Too many people, within the context of their intimate relationship, seem to believe that their partner can read their mind. In other words, there is an incorrect notion that you should know why he or she is upset. Most often, the recipient of the silence is left with feelings of confusion and exasperation as they try to resolve the problem. However, how can someone resolve a problem when they do not know what is wrong?

Expression of Anger

Couple in bedOn a deeper level, there is really a power struggle going on for the partner who has lapsed into silence. The silent treatment is really the expression of lots of aggression.

The ultimate goal of the strategy is to win. The silent partner is expressing rage in a way that is passive aggressive. This is designed to get attention and to provoke feelings of guilt. Winning means that the target person admits to having committed some type of offense for which they are now begging forgiveness.

The paradox in this situation that ultimately gets provoked is anger that then leads to a very loud argument.

Moving Forward

Because the use of this passive aggressive weapon is so damaging to relationships it is important that the couple seek marriage counseling. Stonewalling does not promote intimacy, trust or marital and relational happiness.

By the way, there are those parents who use this weapon on their children, refusing to talk to or acknowledge them until they have apologized for some mysterious affront they have allegedly committed.

What are your experiences with the silent treatment? Your comments are strongly encouraged.

Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

  • Cathy

    Just off the top of my head I would say that people that use the silent treatment actually have poor communication skills to begin with and have learned that it is better to say nothing than possibly dig themselves deeper into the hole - as when they are in trouble. I don't have time for the silent treatment and feel it is also an immature reaction. I am a brainstormer, let's figure it out and you can't do that with a silent partner.

  • K P Lakshmi Narasimhan

    I am a victim of aggression. I tend to avoid those uncomfortable aggression by silent response. I assumed that it will convey my feelings silently but, it reversed and created chaos in my life. It created mis-trust and followed anger & revenge. Later, I realised it is my stonewalling is responsbile.

  • LuLu

    The very few times that I have been silent while angry with a partner or parent, it has been because I was too angry to speak, or because I felt I had "no right" to be upset and was trying to control my emotions. I do not know if this is a normal motive for the behavior, but I actually don't think the motive is so important. Whether a person uses silence as a weapon because they want to win or for another reason, the behavior is still inappropriate and should be adjusted.

  • Ali H

    My mother used to give me the silent treatment for any little offense. If I disagreed with her on any topic she would go silent and leave the room whenever I entered. I got so used to it that I just ignored it.

    On the other side of it, I got so angry at a family member once that I found it impossible to speak. I went dead inside and couldn't make any words come out. It took a very long time for my rage to abate. It seemed to be out of my control.

  • Anonymous-1

    My father used the silent treatment as a form of punishment throughout my childhood. Looking back I can see that he used it on everyone in his life, to the point that he has not maintained any long term relationships beside his daughters and wife. The longest time he did not speak to me for was 2 years. Typically the silent treatment would last for 1 week to 3 months depending on the "severity" of the things we "did wrong". I see my sister doing the same thing in her life, it is very sad.

  • Right-Left

    Maybe a person uses the silent treatment for fear of harming themselves emotionally. Sometimes, I feel, this may be a protection when an attempt to communicate is a waste of time. Perhaps the other party needs the slient treatment to evaluate their own actions.

  • Anonymous-2

    I feel that some use the silent treatment as a form to control the situation. It is a form to train someone to choose your argument wisely. This way the abuser will learn that if they stand up for themselves there are consequences.

  • Anonymous-3

    It started a few years ago, after I criticized my sister for not spending enough time with our aging mother. I live thousands of miles away, on another continent, and have returned home a few times in recent years to assit my mother (leaving my husband, children and work). On one occasion I "critcized", her definition, my sister for not giving up her Sunday morning yoga class, once in awhile, to be with our mother. She lives with her life partner about 20 miles from our mother, and has no children. Well, she doesn't go out of her way for anyone. She went raging out and screaming saying all I do is critcize her. That's when she began to distance herself, eventually ignoring any email or phone contact with me. And making comments that imply that her time is more valuable than mine, and doesn't have time to read my emails. We had a full on blowout after a family get together 2 years ago when I felt she continued to try to block me from speaking or particpating in parts of the evening. She is very controlling, and must have the floor. On my subsequent visit she went out of her way not to see me, continuing the silent treatment, and/or ignoring my presence. I've recently sent her a number of emails asking her why she is acting like this, and what is it that I have done to upset her so much. She refuses to discuss it, and with each email I send laying out what I think I've done, she continues with the same brief communication saying she doesn't want to talk about it. I have since communicated to her that unless we discuss the problem, and both take our responsiblity for our own actions we will not resolve the conflict. She continues to refuse to talk about it. I am no longer in contact with her, and have asked my friends and family not to discuss this any longer. I don't know if she's Bipolar, Narcissistic or just mean.

  • Deb

    I had my first child in December, 2009. My mother was not there to help me. I believe she has NPD, as she has been emotionally damaged her whole life.

    Ever since I was a child, she'd invoke the silent treatment on me for some perceived affront I allegedly committed. Nothing was ever talked about or resolved, and I never knew how long the silent treatment would last. When it was finally over, nothing was ever mentioned. I always felt like I was walking on egg shells.

    As a child, my mother (along w/ her siblings) was abused both mentally and physically by their stepmother. Her biological mother, who died a few months before my son was born, was not really in the picture.

    My mother admitted to me when I was 17 that she never knew how to be a mother -- this, after raising me and my disturbed sister, who spent years in girls' homes, etc. for rage/substance abuse, etc.

    My mother is cut off from most of her family, and the common denominator is her. Cousins I knew as a child -- well, I haven't seen them in 20 years, b/c of the infiighting. And I was always expected to go along with my mother, and never could tell her how it hurt me that I couldnt see my family anymore.

    My mother has her good points, but she has NO EMPATHY. Here's one example of the many instances in which she refused to help me: At age 18, after spending a night in the hospital for knee surgery, I returned home, still zoned out on pain medication (I have had 5 surgeries for knee inflammation). My first night home, she'd had me stay, incongruously, in an upstairs bedroom, even though our only bathroom was downstairs -- my leg was in a brace.

    Around 10 p.m. that night, my stomach began to hurt so bad and I started to sweat. I knew it was from the pain meds. So I went down the stairs on my butt, with my leg outstretched before me. I hopped to the bathroom as quickly as I could, and it was dark inside. All of a sudden, I heard a started and threatening, "Jesus CHRIST!" My mother was in the bathtub.

    I hopped on the toilet and apologized profusely, but told her I was in pain and had to go to the bathroom right that moment. Furious, she leapt out of the bath and threw a towel around herself, screaming about how she never got any time for herself.

    There are probably hundreds of examples I could give about my mother, but I will spare you. However, this all came to a head last year when I had my baby. She ignored my wishes for help and never came. When I brought it up to her as I recovered from a C-section, she blamed me and various perceived slights she'd been "victim" to at my baby shower the summer preceding.

    So, this is the longest silent treatment of my life -- 8 months now. She still hasnt met my son, either. But I'm moving on with the knowledge that I'm breaking free from the cycle of abuse that has been in our family for generations.

  • H.C.

    I feel like a ghost in my own home. She is upset with me and is ignoring me completely. I feel a great deal of emotional and even physical pain at being pushed away like this. I know what I did and I've apoligized and taken complete ownership for my actions but she has yet to let me back into her life. Every second of silence is a crushing blow to my mind, heart and body. I want her to yell at me, kick me out or forgive me. Anything but this tortourous silence.

  • Durk Gescheidle

    My (ex) girlfriend of four years exhibits many of the symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder and paranoid schizophrenia.

    She believes there is a vast conspiracy against her and that I am a part of it. Nearly a year ago she accused me of letting people (the conspirators) into her house and will no longer speak to me. She did the same thing to others and finally turned on me.

    I've tried to talk to her numerous times, urging her to get help. I did this before the break-up as well but the response was "There's nothing wrong with me". Still, she refuses to talk to me. Everyone sees she has problems, even people who have talked to her for only a few minutes. This woman desperately needs help. We tried to have her hospitalized but the judge denied our petition.

    My information states that her condition will worsen unless she gets help. Everyone believes this will end badly. I would give anything to help her.

  • Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

    Hello Durk,

    It does seem, from your description of her, that your ex girl friend may have a mental illness. The problem is that it is hopeless to argue with a person who has a delusion. When we try, we become part of the delusion and we are viewed as a possible enemy.

    I am sorry to say there is nothing you can do. Delusions and hallucinations are not illegal. However, threats against others, sucide, and homicide are illegal and they provide an opportunity to have someone brought to the hospital. Disorderly conduct is another one. However, I am speaking of the U.S. and am only giving an opinion.


    Dr. Schwartz

  • Matthew

    My fiancee has always given me the silent treatment, but only for short times (a few minutes to a few hours). Even a few minutes of it is torturous for me as I very rarely know why she's doing it and almost never have done something wrong. It is sometimes a daily occurence and it has filled me with so much stress that I sometimes explode when she finally tells me the petty reason for her stonewalling me (for example today she thought I may have been turned on by a sex scene on the TV show Weeds (I wasn't)). She seems reluctant to acknowledge that she has a problem and claims it always worked for her in her family as a preferable alternative to saying mean things to family members.

    Is there much hope for curing this behavior? I think she's probably been doing it since she was a kid but broaching the subject makes her silent so I can't get an answer about the origins of the behavior. Any advice for me?

  • Anonymous-4

    Silent treatment has been a part of my marriage for 41 years. Trying to fiqure out what you did wrong, or what you said is exhuasting. I now come home from work and we are both silent and we have little to talk about. I'm at a point where I don't even want to talk anymore. Life is not supposed to be like that. I suffer from severe anxiety and depression. It is also affecting my physical health, I now have high blood pressure and angina. I believe this is the wear and tear from all those years of silent treatment (abuse). Leaving is not option so I have to try and make the best of it.

  • Anonymous-5

    My brothers and sisters all have gone through this. Unfortunately, I am now the sole caretaker of my mother going through chemotherapy. She has her good days and bad days. On her good days when she can do things for herself, she still won't. But if I upset her in any way, she gives me silent treatment, won't take her pills and completely ignores me when I talk to her. My two brothers and two sisters all have gone through this at many times in our lives. Basically if she does not get her way she does this. What I find appauling? When she is upset like this, all of a sudden she can do things for herself that in the past I have done. I don't know how to handle this anymore and I don't know how much more I can take. I love my mother very much and want to help her through her recovery, but I feel I am being abused. She is also a bully. When she isn't giving me the silent treatment she screams and stomps when she doesn't get her way. This is hard to deal with as I have given up my job search, my apartment etc. and have to live with her because of this situation. She was diagnosed with Cancer over a year and half ago.


    Almost broken!

  • Anonymous-6

    I have a boyfriend who does this every time we have a fight!Of course I don't know if we are broken up, or not ,as he won't answer the damn phone!So , this is a real PROBLEM between us.I never know if we are finished , or he is just mad, and will resume our relationship!What a terrible way to live, huh?I am almost at the end of my rope here, with this crazy behavior.It solves NOTHING.And it totally destroys ,all trust ,between the two people.I mean if you can't even reach your boyfriend on the phone, how much of a "friend" is he being to you?Where is the LOVE in that kind of treatment?Communication is the key to everything.....

  • Anonymous-7

    going into week #3 of silent treatment from non-live in partner of 15 years. I would say this has happened about 10 times during the years. Little to nothing can set it off. Then, there is no answering the phone, no answering the door, no replies to emails. I'm tired of making attempts and getting nothing. It's torturous. He's normally so completely loving and then he gets so cold and mean. I know he did this in a relationship previous also. It's abusive and I'm going to try to leave it before I'm damaged any further.

  • Anonymous-8

    I was married 14 years to the master of the silent treatment. I didn't know what it was at the time. I felt so alone and in constant pain only I didn't know I was. That may sound strange and it does to me now. Why did I tolerate it? Because I have always been kind to people, responsible and respectful. He used the power of my love as a weapon against me. I in my ignorance, let him. I allowed this behavior when I should have stopped it the first time it happened. I remarried years later and my current husband tried it - ONCE! I made up my mind that I would never go into that hell again. NEVER! You should not degrade yourself for the sake of love. The silent treatment is the worst thing you can do to someone. Now, I realize all the people in my life that did this to me and I have let them know, it doesn't work anymore. If you have a problem with me, let's talk. If you silent treat me, it's just like a baseball bat to my head. Do not give in or back down when faced with this - let them know, you do not tolerate this behavior. If they do not stop, you must leave - don't waste your life being mistreated. It's a LOVE KILLER!!!!!!

  • Anonymous-9

    My beloved husband gives me the silent treatment several times a year. I love him alot and he is wonderful guy however he refuses to admit the emotional damage that his silence has on our relationship insisting that it is his way of dealing with conflict and that he will not change. I am worried about the impact of his behaviour on the children (he does not give them the silent treatment- just me) as he is modelling this destructive and harmful behaviour. When he behaves like this I question his love for me and lose a little bit of respect for him. The best advice I have been given is use the "silent time" in a positive manner and do things for yourself such as catching up with friends, reading, getting a massage etc. Leave him to suffer in his undies in miserable silence!!!

  • Alison

    My situation seems to be very similary to 'Deb's'. It is my father who I have learned clearly has BPD and has been quite a sh*thead to me most of my life (almost all of my adult life). I'm 33 years old with two small boys and a girl on the way and it has always been my mother who I care to have the realtionship with, even with what I recognize now as having pretty clear cut bipolar disorder. So it's like a double whammy with my parents and as of the last few years since we've had our two boys and she has most recently survived cancer, that I am seeing my mother adopting the putrid, sickening, thoughtless and selfish ways of my father. She has very recently begun the silent treatment with me (which she has done before, my dad almost permantly but again, don't care about him). I love my mother very much and have 'forgiven' or gotten over all the bipolar behaviour in the past for the sake of trying to continue a loving relationship with my mother. I am almost completely convinced and aware that my father is simply way more important to her than her daughter and grandchildren who she is just being absent for because my father simply doesn't care whatsoever to be a part of any of our lives. I alway knew my mother would love nothing more than to have a great relationship with me and her grandchildren (and son-in-law) but allows my father's NOT wanting that to ruin it for herself. As of most recently and the straw that will probably break the camal's back after all these years of forgiveness, my parents didn't come to my son's 2nd birthday party which was strictly a family party and they were the biggest part of that. My mom blamed not being able to drive and notifying me that she couldn't come at the very last second on not feeling well. She just finished radiation treatments and we've all been more than helpful and sympathetic to her after effects the radiation had on her. She is still going through it but and I know it's rough for her, but I know for a fact that if my dad drove her to our house she would 100% be able to sit in the car for 1.5 hours to be there with the bicycles they were raving about giving them that they still can't come to give them. My mother wound up blaming me that I 'sicken her' for telling her that not feeling well doesn't make you thoughtless and proceeded with a lot of other hateful things to say in her email to me. The next day, she pretended as if nothing happened and begged us to come up to see her when I said we had a lot going on that weekend and couldn 't come to pick up the bicycles that weekend. I responded as nicely as I could to her...I need to be clear in all of this that my WHOLE LIFE, my father has used his back pain as an excuse not to come to see us where our babies, now two and three year olds are. There's ALWAYS an excuse and my mother has adopted all of my dad's excuses and they're missing out so much. My boys ask about Grandma and it's too much at this point to keep allowing this BS to continue for their sake if nobody elses. Since I declined coming to them to pick up their gift to them for the party they missed (theyre both only about 55 years old), I havne't heard from my mom since and this was now about 2 weeks ago. I called for her birthday last week and again the next day and nothing. It's like I'm supposed to sit around and wonder what I did wrong. I now know it's just projection on their part and I simply don't care to have it in my life anymore. I do love my mother and this is the LAST thing I would ever want, but after digging a bit and finding out what I believe the real problem is with both of them, it helps to better understand, not beat myself up about it and not be bullied by it anymore. I can only pray that she comes around (again but for good this time). My thoughts and prayers are out there for all of you going through anything similar as it really can rip things apart. I have learned to keep my husband 2 soon to be 3 kids first at all times. NOT this unacceptable behavior by my own parents to suit their own needs. Keep sharing everyone- it really helps and has helped me a lot!

  • omayoza

    i really appreciate ur article on relationships and d silent treatment. i,ve been browsing d net for past one week to get advice on this topic, i sure got a relief now. my husband is an ''expert in stonewalling". for the past 13years of my marriage with him he "trips off" and likes to turn his back at me at any slightest arguement, sometimes without even an arguement .then i keep wondering wot i hav done wrong. i usually make d move for reconciliation but i found out over d years dat he took it as a weakness ie dat i cant help not to talk to him so it became an ego thing in him. a relative of his had told me he was good at stonewalling even befor i married him. he has been on it now again for three weeks and he doesnt greet or talk to myself and my mum, he only talks to d kids. i have decided not to give in this time. i agree its a sign of immaturity. any further advise?

  • Jr

    Wow, Christmas was overshadowed with another bout of "out in the cold." He got angry a couple of days before Christmas, went home, and refused contact until the day after Christmas. This pattern has been set since the beginning of our relationship. He gets REALLY angry about something seemingly small, tells me everything he, and "everyone" else, thinks of me and disappears for days. It takes me days to put back the pieces of self-esteem, dignity, and reason. Interim, I'm wondering if he's dead or not. My friends and family pray I'll stop participating in the relationship, even I wish I had the courage and strength to let go forever, but the positive sides of our relationship are tremendous and I just can't seem to muster the courage to stay unavailable. -Please give me practical, step by step, approaches without condemnation, I've really had enough of that. Thanks, Jr

  • Anonymous-10

    Its a very sad thing to happen to somebody especially when it goes on for decades over not particularly major issues.

  • Anonymous-11

    I know husband and wives might do this ..however, may entire family (all grown now) invokes the silent treatment--many times as a last defense. In my family, whenever there is conflict...allies are quickly formed and it usually is a stand-off (silent treatment) because each side wants to RIGHT instead of admitting they *may* have been wrong (or controlling, nagging, backstabbing, thoughtless..etc).

    Such is life!

  • Naty

    Well I been reading a few articles about ostracism /silent treatment, it IS in fact a form of emotional abuse, and it sucks.

    I cant really remember the first time I recieved the silent treatment, I think it was in person, yeah he totally ignored me out of something lil I did, and I didnt even know what the heck happened, cause he stopped talking to me at all. Its funny cause this person acts out and you KNOW you are being ignored, so its really dumb, so I was in the same room with him and other people and i was talking to them but he wont respond or even look at me, i was like wtf? so, I cooled down and thought "he wants to play?" ok well I wont play that way, so I stopped talking to him at all or give him any attention, however I got to talk to him that same day and we got the problem solved it was all ok.

    Then another time that I remember was a for like 4 days, I would call, send text the few first days, and No response.. It was the worst experience I ever felt, those days I could barely sleep, eat or even smile, eveything became so unbearable and sad. All those things that would fascinate me turned to be depressing and I would cry my self to sleep, or get super sad out of just thinking about him. It sucked, it sucked so bad :( I cant even explain it, I know during the silent treatment the target will experience a threath to their four primary needs: belonging, control, self steem and meeningful excistence, so this pretty much explain the way I felt through that time, it is even worse when you love this person. Why these people have the guts to hurts us like this? Do they even care?

    I have been given the silent treatment (I could dare to say) more than 8 times now, some of them for hours another 1 to 5 days. Right now I have red so much, that I honestly feel heartless, in the sense that Im so tired of the same thing that I rather not to think about it and go on with my life, If I allow myself to be hurt by this behavior the only thing Im doing is letting myself get destroyed second by second.

    Its funny cause I really love this person, I mean I have been given the ST from another guys before, but It would never hurt as much as it does when my bf does it. I dont know what should I do?

    Could anybody help me? is this cycle never ending? how can I stop the cycle? is there a cure or is it gonna be eternal? should I keep in this relationship?

    Thanks for reading

  • Anonymous-12

    i am a female.. i am very pretty. i have been abused all my life by people.. living well is the best revenge. i give silent treatment to my abusers. only. I find solace in these times.and safety.

  • mim1978

    My story is very complex, we were married and he kept walking out on me after ignoring me for days, and for the most stupid reasons, once as I'd asked him to hold our baby when she was 2 weeks old. I'd had a C-Section-He knew he was leaving me unable to cope, he walked 5 times in 4 months and i'd lost count of the silences.

    I was divorced for 3 years he seems to only want me when i'm doing well and enjoys the process of dragging me down. He ignored his child for 3 years.

    I took him back last summer and he moved in because I had a car accident and then I was at my strongest.

    After 2 months of a loving relationship and him being wonderful I have had 6 weeks of hell, not being able to say anything to him about anything and feeling invisible TODAY I gave him a choice.

    He's been advised by a professional that his behaviour is wrong, it's not right to talk to me for 2 days then ignore me for 4 days then ignore me again and so on. As I said after 6 weeks I gave him a choice either go for the CBT as needed or get lost. HE ran back to the only woman who will put up with him his MOTHER

    Now divorce is going to mean divorce, I feel sad because I love him but I love myself and my kids more.

    NO more walking on eggshells.....

    No more suffocating or crying myself to sleep..

  • Anonymous-13

    Well today is number 4 of the silent treatment from my husband. The last time was about a month ago. It usually lasts for about 4 days with me giving in and talking to him, exasperating myself to him about how cooling off is ok but days is cruel. I dont care anymore, I used to cry and beg for him to talk to me. Now I look as it as a relief I dont cook for him, I dont worry, I just do me and the kids. the last silent treatment I got from him I told him how he ignores the children too, Now he talks to them in front of me obviously ignoring their mother!I am tired of being made to feel that no matter what I do I am wrong, I am tired of being belittled in the name of caring for me. I am tired of my feelings dont matter, like I ddidnt have a life before him, like when I dont listen to him I always get into problems,as if I am a child. Of course I love him but I cannot be in a relationship with this manif he doesnt respect me as a womanas an adultas his equal.

  • tai

    I have been married for 5 months and i have a 4 months old baby girl..whenever our conversation differs my husband gives me a silent treatment,he comes to bed very late doesnt even speak to me.i already feel like walking out of the pains me.

  • Mo

    I'm into the 7th day of silent treatment by my husband (10 weeks has been the longest). It all started when I didn't agree with him, he started shouting and really getting angry, shouting right in front of my face invading my personal space. I tried to calm things down but that only made him more angry and started calling me names and been verbally abusive towards me. He then stormed off into the spare bedroom and has literally been there ever since only occasionally coming out when he knows I am in the shower or bath so he doesn't have to see me. I am going out of my mind, I am hardly eating or sleeping. Over the last couple of days I have gone out to see friends but when I come back its like a huge black cloud is there. I have thought about leaving him but I find that its hard I can't even try to talk to him because he's shut up in the bedroom. So how can this sitation be resolved ....only when he comes out of it. I know I must take control of me. Its always me that apologises and trys to make amends for the situation. He nevers does. Life sucks at the moment and I always say to myself I wont get into this situation again...........but here I am. Its just a circle and I wish I could get off

  • winnie

    I been married to my husband for 37 years and I suppose as I look back over the years what I thought was sulking was in fact the silent treatment. As the years have gone on and since we retired over 10 years ago the silent treatment has got worse. Last summer he had a period of 10 weeks where he shut himself away in the spare room hardly eating or drinking and trying as much as possible to avoid even standing in the same room as me it only happened if he wanted a drink but if he saw me in the kitchen he would about turn and go back upstairs. He would then wait until I was showering or having a bath and would creep downstairs to get something to eat. In each situation I feel its me and that I need to apologise for upsetting him. I feel guilty inadequate and through worrying I don't eat or sleep. We are in a period now of silent treatment this is the 12th day but this time I am reacting differently, I go out to see friends go for walks but it seems to be having no effect on him, he probably doesn't know that I am going out because he is shut up in the spare room. There is still the mind trying to sort it out and make sense of it all. These silent treatments can just turn on like turning a tap on there seems to be no regular pattern. Except they start with an argument/disagreement and me trying to calm the situation down. When this happens he blames me for being so negative and always bollocking him . so it always seems to be my fault, he wont even accept an apology from me.

    One thing I don't understand is what makes him come out of the silent treatment and act as if nothing as happened between us. I really want my life back

  • juan angelina

    My father has always been silent ever since I know myself, as I grew up I realized that he was the one who I less speak even though we are in the same house and (have to) be together a great amount of time. I dont know the reason why he just speak as minium as he does. He even speak much more with our relatives and neighbours which makes me go crazy. He used to say me he loves me from his internal and it is unnecessary to show feelings (of course says this mixed with joke and while there are my mother etc) This situation has made me sick and I do not speak anymore with him. I mean, at max three words a day. I am 19 years old and I feel I never had a father. Moreover, I started to experience same with my mother. My advice would be never do it to your child then it may be totally uncontrolable and you may lose your child.

  • Anonymous-14

    I was with a very sweet girl (sweet on the outside) for a year and a half. I still think there's wonderful qualities about her - i'd still be there for her if she ever needed me. I want to live my life free of guilt and issue avoidance. I want to live with no elephants in the room. I've had years of therapy since childhood and learned tons of positive coping mechanisms for relationships.

    But the silent treatment was new to me, and caught me off guard.

    We lived together for a year. It was a big deal for me as I'd never taken such a plunge as to live with someone before, and I really wanted to do it right and commit to it.  I'd had my share of raising my voice in frustration over lack of communication, but the silent treatment is where she really shined. Weeks at a time, days at a time, we broke it off once for a week early on because she just ran away and said she couldn't take it. There were moments when she would say "I'm not happy" and never explain why. I'm not even sure what I did sometimes to get her so upset. I know it had nothing to do with me in hindsight, but it hurt.

    Well, she moved away eventually. She took a job offer in another city and announced she was going. (I was never informed she was having the interview in said city - she told me she was going there for her brother's wedding - that manipulation is a whole other story.) The inevitable came true, and after a small argument via email she told me never to contact her again. She blocked me on facebook, email address in her spam folder. And she simply moved on like i didn't exist. So much so, that she met someone 2 months later, and eloped with said person 3 months after that. On what would have been our 2 year anniversary. Never mind that it will be her second marriage.. I know cause I stood by her and was her rebound during her first divorce..No thank you for being there for me. There's a bit of self-centered-fear going on there.

    I don't exist anymore. I'm a non-entity. Friends are not allowed to speak my name to her. I don't come up in conversation. She has a beautiful image on the outside of a perfect life in a nice co-op with a clean cut husband and a dog and the whole nine yards. She talks about how great her life is to her friends. She's having the time of her life on the outside. And I never existed. If you mentioned my name to her she'd probably say "Who?"

    Sad that some people have to live their lives in such denial.

  • Yuri

    This is one of the sickest forms of emoetional abuse. Until you have lived it, you have no idea what it feels like to be a ghost or so invalidated by your partner or close person to you.

    My ex did this all the time. Without a moment's notice. A pattern. I could even predict when it would happen. He would ignore me for days/week and seemingly snap out of it like nothing ever happened. I got tired of telling him to stop. So tired. I would cry, be unable to sleep, feel emotionally dead inside.

    After 7 years, the last silent episode lasted almost two months. While he was at work I moved out one day. I told him he didn't have to worry about not talking to me anymore.

    We divorced.

    If you ae in a relationship with someone who does this, SAVE yourself. They are never going to change because they don't see waht they are doing as wrong. It's control. It's a way for them to punish you. Master sulkers never change. Healthy people will work with you on relationship issues. Healthy people will stop doing something when you ask them to and tell them how it makes you feel. These silent givers cannot and will not come around or meet you halfway. They are sick sick in the head.

  • Lynette

    My mother used the silent treatment on my father and also on me. It was a terrible feeling as a child growing up and having my mother, someone I wanted to always love me, to not ignore and not talk to me. This would go on for days or weeks. Often, I never knew why she was angry but would try desperately to get her attention and approval until finally she would acknowledge me again. I would buy her things, try to do nice things for her, give up anything I wanted to do, just to get her to love me again. My mother's silent treatment against me affected my relationship with others. I could not stand for anyone not to like me or be angry with me, and would do just about everything or anything for the to accept me again, even favors for people I really did not want to do. I had a difficult time saying no to people, even ones who I did not know well or proved they were not my friends. Eventually, I learned when I was able to connect my behavior to the way my mother had treated me.

  • Claire

    Up until 5 months ago, I was living with, & engaged to a man I loved very much, but each time any difficulty would arise in our relationship, he would lock himself in his study or the guest bedroom & refuse to speak to me for days. It started out as a few days, progressed to weeks, then to months. Sometimes he leaves or even moves out, but if I try to call him he refuses to answer the phone or call back. He does not answer emails. Over the past 6 years we have been together, I have become more & more anxious, depressed & very, very angry. I used to be a very happy, outgoing person with lots of friends & activities. I have 2 wonderful sons who are happily married with families of their own. I have 7 beautiful grandchildren. Really a lot to be thankful for. Also a beautiful home--I am a retired interior designer. This man I loved has ripped my life apart with the silent treatment. Most of our relationship was great, but if we had 3 problems, they could never be resolved due to the silent treatment. In December he had heart surgery, after which I cared for him, hung out in bed with him watching TV, bringing him meals, etc. It was pretty scary, but he survived. One night after he had been zonked out on Percocet for 3 straight days, I went into my shop and out with friends for a few hours just to get a break from the stress. When I returned, he was furious that I had gone out, accusing me of being drunk, after 2 glasses of wine. He then stopped speaking to me, moved into the guest bedroom for 3 days. I gave him a choice: either talk or move out. I couldn't have someone living in my house who was not speaking to me. He moved out into his own apartment. A month ago he contacted me wanting to get back together. "My love for you is always there," he wrote in a note accompanying a beautiful bouquet of flowers. I said I would like to, but was left with a lot of scars from the many episodes of the silent treatment. I hoped he would understand & apologize. He said he wasn't sorry, so I asked him to leave. He is still gone, but I am not getting over this as quickly as I would like. Maybe it's because I am older than I used to be--66. But I am still very attractive & know I look much, much younger than I am. No one believes that I'm 66. Still, I had never experienced the silent treatment ever in my life before I met him. I grew up in a very happy family where open communication was always encouraged. My Dad was a professor at Duke & my Mom was a former schoolteaacher. My childhood couldn't have been better, but nothing can ever prepare you for the silent treatment. It is devastating, infuriating, depressing. And I have always been told that I am an articulate communicator--but it does no good in the face of 5 months of the silent treatment, or 5 days, even. I am struggling to get over this experience, mostly the anger & frustration. I am ashamed to say that I still love this man for many reasons, but the silent treatment has ruined it all.

    Sadly, Claire

  • Claire

    It has been very helpful to me reading testimonials from other people experiencing the silent treatment. I have realized that I am not alone & that the silent treatment is a devastating form of emotional abuse that I am not emotionally equipped to handle. Who is? I know that I am well rid of this man, but I still mourn the good times, which were many. I know he is miserable without me, yet he continues to stonewall me. He now lives alone in a little apartment with very little, except his job & his cardiac rehab routines. I feel sad that he simply won't, can't resolve our differences. I know that I am better off without him, yet I have been reluctant to start dating again, even though I have had offers. One guy has been a friend throughout this whole experience, listening, empathizing, even being in love with me. I want to fall in love with him because he is just so very nice & also good looking & financially sound. He has been infinitely patient with me, realizing what I have been through & am still going through. I just want to SNAP OUT OF IT! Now. I wonder how long it will take? I'm tired of feeling like this, & really want to MOVE ON.

  • Claire

    I keep reading & rereading everyone's postings, looking for clues, for comfort. If there were a group like AA for Silent Treatment victims, I would join in in a heartbeat. If I had to give advice to anyone, it would be: GET OUT, NOW, while you still can. Before you are so worn down you can't escape. I know I stayed in my relationship too long (6 years) always hoping things would be different. There was so much good & wonderful in our relationship, I couldn't believe that the 2 or 3 things that were problems for us couldn't be fixed. But the silent treatment makes any "fixing" totally impossible. You can't fix something you can't even talk about. And you can't talk to someone who is doing the silent treatment. There are times when I have almost wished for my life to be over, when I don't even want to get out of bed. I have been doing a lot of things to get over the silent treatment: keeping a daily journal of my experiences, talking to friends, joining a gym, seeing my kids (less than I used to because of my depression), getting his things out of my house by driving over to his apartment late at night & dumping them near his car, leaving cards he has given me on his windshield, throwing away a lot of his stuff that remains in my house ( I am waiting for the trash men tomorrow--yay!), getting on to meet someone else (haven't really done more than review profiles). The worst thing I have done is throw eggs at his new car late at night. Truly a new low in my life. I don't reccomend this. Fortunately it rained heavily that night, so he may never have known. I need to do whatever I can to get beyond this. I can't talk to my sons about it. They love me with or without a relationship. So do my grandchildren. I don't want them to know just how much I am hurting right now. My little 6-year old grandson asked me "Do you think you"ll find another man, Grandma?" How sweet is that? Even he knew that I was sad. Oh well, my phone is ringing, but I know it is NOT my ex-fiance! I keep hoping.

  • Allan N. Schwartz, PhD

    Claire, don't you think it's time to move on? After all of these years, don't you think it likely that he will not change and that you've had enough suffering? I can understand your reluctance to re-marry but you could at least date. You need time to heal and, maybe, even think about psychotherapy. After all, your mother used the silent treatment on your father and your husband uses it on you. There may be more things there that you need to work out, at least, that's a thought I have?

    Dr. Schwartz

  • Claire

    Thank you for your response. I DO need to move on. Also get into some kind of therapy situation. The man involved was not my husband, just my fiance--although that is almost the same thing. Thank goodness I didn't marry him.

    My Mom never did the silent treatment to my Dad--that was someone else. My Dad actually encouraged dissenting opinions & feelings from everyone in our family. He was remarkable in that way. He died 6 years ago on Thanksgiving Day, but he taught all of us in the family to communicate freely without fear. That was his legacy, & a good one. His wife, children ,grandchildren, students knew they could disagree with him & that he actually welcomed the dialogue.

    I never encountered the silent treatment until 6 years ago. I am still am bewildered by it. I am trying to learn how to not let it affect me. Your website helps a lot. Thanks

  • cgcg

    I admit it. I give the silent treatment to my partner. This is my second serious committed relationship and I now realise that I did this in my first relationship too. My first relationship was quite childish (we were both very young).

    I do use it as a form of control. Both to control myself and the level of interaction Im prepared to put in., I feel if I air my grievances with my current partner I will only be belittled or my issues will be dismissed. (Which often happens). So rather then get into a full scale fight I think it is best to keep my mouth shut.

    I get constantly harrassed by him why Im not happy, Im a miserable b**ch etc. Im over it. I admit Im never happy. Currently Im surrounded by nearly every member of my family either going broke or going through bankruptcy. Ive had a very traumatic past 3 years caused by my partner (50% his doing) and am a first time mother with no support. Frankly I have nothing happy to say. If i have a $50 left over at the end of the week...its been good.

    As a couple we do NOTHING together. The relationship is miserable and boring. No intimacy, laughs, enjoyemnt etc. I am full of ANGER about certain things. Obviously my relationship has issues and I know this. But its hard to communicate with a difficult person. Thats why I say nothing. When I cant speak at all - I have to get out of the room, its because Im ready to explode. Personally I am sick of being surrounded by problems and problem people. Im so fed up by everything..that I go silent. I would LOVE for life to be a little easier and to have something enjoyable to look forward to.

  • Broad THINKER!

    Sillent Treatment doesn't mean you're immature or doesn't mean you're communication is poor. We are all different as how we treat each other's relationship, whether a friend, partner or even a stranger. Most likely we experienced or rather I have been into the situation which I believe SILENCE says it's enough. If your communication is already full and still not loading I guess you would've AGREE with me that it's better to be SILENT. A partner would've tired for redundunt misconduct neither a child will agree if listening while communicating will be applied realistically not only merely talking!To a partner who is more IMMATURE I would say is the person who took advantage of not reacting with his action (meaning changing directions) especially if you have a responsibility already or I must say your a father.

  • ang

    ive been with my husband 12 years and have 2 wonderful kids with him,he was brought up by difficult parents hes dad abused every member of hes family by beating them and handing out the silent parents always babysat our kids ,hes mother would seldom take them,recently our rows started a couple of years ago,when i told my husband we need 2 start spending more time together,thats when it all started,i was blamed and still am for starting rows all because i want hes mother involved a bit more in looking after her grandkids,he wont ask her,i fell out with hes father because he was bullying my kids and i stood up to him,ive told his mam that he wont ask her to mind the kids and that was a completly waste of time,its like we have no interest in each other anymore,when i complain about the silent treatment im being told that everything is grand and hes doing nothing wrong,i cook dinner clean the house look after the kids and not even a thanks.he dont understand and it kills me when he can be so pleasant to complete strangers on the street,be pleasant to hes friends ,say thank you to everyone else,be able to joke and have a laugh with everyone else and makes more of an effort for everybody else bar me.what have i done wrong only ask to be treated with a bit of respect to be told im a good mother when i feel im not,to make an effort like he does for everybody else,i know i can be as stubborn as he is,but we can go months without talking and he actually thinks this is normal.hes father done this to hes wife and he thinks its normal i told hes mam about the way her son is treating me and being a woman who went through it all u would think she would say something and not let him make the same mistake.i am actually drained from all of this,it makes me feel like shit all the time and feel like ive no energy to do anything,so matter how hard i try to pretend it doesnt bother me it does,and its eating me up himself.[help]

  • Anonymous-15

    My mother has used the silent treatment on me since I have been 5 years old (and probably longer.) She would use it on my father, and make me be the go-between. She is now 80 years old, and still behaves in this manner. Can you imagine how it feels to be 5 years old, and mommy won't talk to you? You are in school all day with a knot in your stomach, because your mother hates you. Then she bursts into some irrational rage (that has nothing to do with you), and releases the anger. She would become a kind and loving parent, until something else would set her off. Anything. She still does it to this day. I now understand she suffers from some sort of mental problem, but it is heartbreaking when you love your mother at 80, and she ignores and gives you the silent treatment. My self-esteem suffered for years. I had difficulty with expressing myself and being involved in relationships, for fear of abandonment if I got someone mad. It really takes it's toll on a child, especially after years of emotional abuse. I would go into crying fits and feel unworthy. At least I can understand it better. If anyone manifests this personality disorder RUN don't walk, RUN. You will be living a nightmare every day worried about when you will be "punished" again.

  • Silent Man

    I have just realized I do this crap. I am so sorry. I am looking for help but there is not much on the net. I am seeing a counselor now. I am hopeful that this type of thing will stop. Now that I know what I am doing, I don't like who I was. It destroys those I love. It is hurtful for those getting it and GOD... I thought I was so right and wasn't hurting anybody. I was and need help. Thank god I am getting it. I was just liked described....silent...thought they could read my mind... kept replaying me being right and thought anything they did was directed at me making me that much more silent. I am intellegent and have been to college. Why or why... I learned this from my dad who was a true master at this. I don't understand how I could do this after it was done to me. Hope to h I get out of this rut. Get well and start enjoying life and the woman of my dreams. Thanks for reading....

  • Anonymous-16

    Not all are silent to control, I am silent because my husband is the abuser, psychological, and has even succeeded in using the system, to further control me. I am disabled, partially bed ridden [spine disease] and he controls my medical [refuses me care, canceled insurance and now I can't get insurance due to pre-existing], he verbally abuses my daugthers [his step daughters] and he neglects everything, lies about EVERYTHING, doesn't pay the bills leaving me to get sued, etc etc etc

    coerces sex [rape], acts as if he's my warden, isolates me [13 years], and finally I broke...and was charged with child neglect over a dirty house, never mind he has a record of DV against another woman, same state, never mind he brags about his 'being above the law' on the internet, never mind he has problems with his boss, authority, etc., he as male was victim [the DA says] because he has a disabled wife, etc., of course, he is now abusive on steroids because now the State has given him license.

    the child protective services realized I was disabled once they saw the medical records but even then, they still never held my husband accountable to anything, ignoring the abuse no matter what my teen children said, and they closed the case. I plead guilty to protect my children [two who are not even his and they are girls] because if I had of gone to court-jail my daughters would have been without any help, one is near suicidal as it is.

    I do not talk to him because any discussion he is looking to argue, fight, control, mind control, even if I change the subject to weather, he twists it into another mind game warfare. So I have learned, thanks to the system that colludes with him, the mental health that deems me as hysterical because hey, I'm supposed to like being controlled, raped, stalked, etc., and he's good at using mental health to create his Stepford Wives [and now that I'm in criminal, though no priors, he is really using this to coerce me and abuse me-children, even now assaulting my oldest daughter, why not, the State and Mental Health made him to be God],

    so, if I'm silent, it's because no one listens, there is no help [I'm poor], I am disabled, now with criminal record...and my husband can do what he pleases with me, with the blessings of State and Mental Health.

    so why would I even bother, to talk to anyone anymore? I don' America, I feel like I live in Iran or Afghanistan, as do my daughters who are also abused mentally by this man..what irks me to no end, is that I showed records of his DV with his ex-wife [due to ongoing stalking by him, child support, etc I was able to get those] and another DV with a woman prior to him meeting me--

    none of those mattered, all same thing, mental abuse, to point of wearing down, physical when they attempted to leave, child abuse, etc.,

    and guess what, the women were demonized, one forced onto drugs...he walks.

    Yea, I'm silent---I've learned, the hard way, when you live with Dr ****, you had better be silent, because even when you are not, you are the one charged and re-abused through the system...

    this is not forty years ago, this is happening to me today, a year of hell with the criminal [child neglect, dirty house, no one cared that I couldn't walk and have chronic pain]...

    yes, I am silent. No one hears my one cares.

  • Renee

    My father and I have always been very close. He was 20 when I w3as born and he always said we grew up together. We are now 49/69 years old. I am going on week 4 of the silent treatment which is the longest in my life. I gor drunk at his friends house and repeated some things the friends girlfriend told me in front of my dad and his friend. The girlfriend was not there but my dad is FURIOUS. I apologized (by text) and received no response. Today is Father's Day and as I have done every year, I sent a card and I gift. I also called him. Nothing. No response. This is really not like him. I get that he is mad/embarrassed by me but, what else can I do? I feel terrible.

  • Sue

    My husband and I have been married for 4 years and have had a long distance realtionship before that. I moved to Australia (his country) last year and am currently studying to get my degree accredited. Ever since Ive come here we are having fights on a weekly basis and after every fight he gives me the silent treatment for days... Its very difficult for me to cope with that- since Ive got nobody here except for him. Lately he just disrespectfully shuts my mouth in a conversation if he doesnt agree with me- by saying "i dont care what you think" and then keeps silent. How shall I deal with this situation since i really love him and i want to get my marriage back on track. Maybe my communication skills are not the best...Please give me some advice.

  • Suzie

    I've been on the receiving end of the silent treatment. In my boyfriends defense, I did go off on him very intensely after finding out that he had hid some conversations he had with other women that I felt threatened by. From my perspective, he was breaking promises he made to me where they were concerned.

    I could understand his need to get away from an angry woman (i was very angry when I found out), but it was an important issue of trust to me. He basically sat there in stone cold silence staring at the ceiling, arms folded.

    After things cooled down on my end, I tried to reach out and explain, but didn't get a response for almost a week. I find myself reacting very emotionally when someone I value ignores me, kinds of makes you feel like they want you to know that to them, you don't even matter or exist.

    From where I sit, being on the receiving end of the silent treatment really just turned what I thought would have been just another relationship argument into a very painful breakup. I'm not excusing my behavior or role in it, but being on the receiving end of the silent treatment made the situation I was felt I was in at the time seem a lot more painful than it needed to be.

  • Anonymous-17

    My husband would use the silent treatment and worse have his back to me in bed. I remember laying next to him silently crying and eventually sleeping downstairs on the sofa alone. I didn't feel as lonely on the sofa somehow. he made me feel so unloved, unattractive, leaving me guessing what I had done wrong, it was torture and it went on too long. He damaged me, I blamed myself and I am still fighting with myself over that. My battle now is to heal and to perhap become the person I once used to be. He left me last year, I was his world we were inseperable for many years. I didn't realise his behaviour was passive agressive until he left, he would twist my words accuse me of behaving like him really so we didn't argue much it wasn't worth it. But because there were not arguements he would use the silent treatment instead. I know now that most of the times it was perhaps too childish for him to admit what was wrong. He still does it to me, even now he left me 10 months ago, I've been out twice since he left and he made me feel wrong and guilty for it. I did nothing wrong and I have no intentions of being with someone else. the thing is whilst I stumbled across midlife crisis and passive agressive men I realized to my horror that I was a victim. It shocked me to be honest, and upset me a great deal. I do still feel worthless, and he still drags me down, but I am aware of it and I have made progress. Knowledge is power and i keep a diary of his behaviour, now I can prepare myself as I know before he does how he will react to something minor and how he will accuse me of not caring about him when he left me. He broke my heart and yet blames me for him leaving. I am getting good at pretending his ways do not bother me but they still do, it is hard work but he seems to be doing it less. In his mind one tiny unasked for gesture deserves a red carpet and a medal, like he has saved the day. But in reality what he did was not important or needed attention, not worth doing at all really. We have 4 children together and since he left I can hear comments one of our sons uses to get his way. his brother being older also see's it and will say to him 'don't say that like dad does, it wont work now stop it.' My son didn't realise he was doing but we do. it stops here no son of mine will make his wife or partner feel the way i feel I shall not allow it. I am tired and I do not sleep well, I have decided to avoid him as much as possible from now onhe controlled me left me and harmed me. I know I must learn to live on my own and I did everything anyway whilst he was here, but my confidence is shattered and just as I feel stronger he takes it again. So with the childrens birthdays out of the way i shall now work in me and aviod the weight around my neck and try to accept, heal and get stronger. Then I can move on at last and hopefully be free from my invisible cell.

  • Laura

    I have been married to my husband for 32 years. At times, he would sulk in those years when he did not get his way. I just tried to rationalize with myself that this was his personality and would give him space until he passed through his mood. Two years ago, I realized he was having an emotional affair. We got counseling--he seemed to get over it, but eventually decided he wanted to separate. Over time, I realized he had moved on into a live-in affair with another lady. The legal system served him with adultery, he fell apart with sheer devastation. Fell into a serious depression, begged forgiveness, and we allowed him home. Six months into his return, I realize he was not as serious as he's lead me on to believe. I asked him to choose what he wanted in life, me/family or the world he's missing out on. He chose the latter. Now, separated again---we (myself and family) are experiencing a serious silent treatment. He will not respond to calls, texts or emails from any of us. He does not know, I know he is interacting with the paramour once again. He has not divulged this information to his friends either. My question, is he using this silent treatment in an effort to prove he has moved on and for us to get over him. Is he using this as a tactic to coerce us (myself and family) to contact him and beg him home? Is he remorseful for his actions, but given up on reconciliation? My biggest concern is his mental state, but no way to really talk to him about it because he has shut down to us all. I don't want to appear I'm begging to save a marriage, he is trying to run from. I do suspect a bipolar condition with this man. He has had therapies and medications for mood stabilizing for years. Any advice before divorce.

  • Kath

    I've been married 6 years - now separated mainly due to my husband's silent treatment and paranoia(?). He's 53 and I'm 62. I think he married me for money because he had nothing when we met and I did. I had saved for my pension but as soon as I told him my savings were almost gone his suspicions of me grew worse and worse. At first I let his suspicions pass, which were from our first meeting. But they got worse and worse. He says our neighbour is a spy. So it's not just me he suspects. He's put his face to mine and shouted YOU LIE! I didn't. He tells me of so many 'crimes' I have commited against him including maybe being unfaithful, when I have done none of them. He is not affectionate either. I have to make sure he is ok and look after his health, whilst he never asks if I'm ok. In the last year we lived together I found him on several dating sites with profiles, telling people he was separated when he wasn't. Maybe it was him who was commiting the 'crimes' he accuses me of. He would eventually make big shouting scenes over his suspicions of me. The thing which finally pushed me away was an innocent phonecall to my daughter. She said 'it's Hallowe'en next week, are you going to anyone's house?' He said she lied and said 'are you going to (a particular person's house).'''?' She didn't say that. Anyway, when the phonecall was finished my husband didn't speak to me and I didn't know why. I tried to behave as normal but it was too difficult. I even looked for another house to rent just to be able to have some space, but I didn't take it. I don't drive and needed to go to the Post Office so I asked him to take me in the car. He shouted 'JUST GO!' That was all he said to be in 8 days. I only got him to speak by asking his friend to ask him what crime I had commited. Bear in mind, I had to try to remember 8 days back. He told his friend on the phone that I should know what I did wrong and he continued to explain to his friend. I had to eavesdrop to find out. So I told him the actual words but he said I was lying and so was my daughter. Anyway, I was so depressed it was obvious I wasn't happy and he said as much. He offered to find a house and did. I paid his initial rent, deposit, ad min fees, tv licence and furnished his house for him. He then moved to another country even though I told him I was still working on our marriage and trying to solve our problems. He went, but left some of his luggage with me because he couldn't afford the excess charge. He asked me to get him a CD out of his luggage. As I took out some of his clothes I found a love letter and birthday card from a woman at the address he's moved to. The problem is now he says I planned it all to get rid of him. I'm still not dating or anything. I'm still working on our marriage but told him I can't do it alone. He says it's no good. So I think he's been looking for women at the end of our relationship and trying to blame me for the split now to make himself feel less guilty. I know I'll have to see him again because now he says he doesn't like the job and the place he's living so I imagine he'll come back to this country. I feel like - he loves me, he loves me not. I have to be careful what I say or he'll come up with more crimes. They don't even make sense. He saw a new suitcase I had and told me I'd been 'travelling.' I have to go to my mother's house 4 times a week because she has dementia and I don't have the money. Conclusion: he married me for money and when it was gone so was he. I feel foolish.

  • Laura

    Just curious as to how to respond to a separated husband who seems to be using the silent treatment to me and the family? How do I initiate this discussion with him to help come up with ways to deal with and stop his passive aggressive communication tactics? Feel like we will push him away further, and there are times we need his correspondance. By the same token, I feel like he needs to know we understand and don't appreciate this emotional abuse. Need guidance in helping me free up lines of communication. Curious if his friends,paramour, or legal counsel are telling him to stay away from me and family---thus the loyalty to them?

    Thanks for your help.

  • John

    My girlfriend and I have been together 5 years now. We have an amazing relationship and communicate very well most of the time. Sometimes when I raise an issue which she disagrees with, she will call me silly and if i try to talk more about the issue she cuts me off completely. It is now 3 days I have not heard from her. This issue was raised by me, because I was dissapointed with her and now she is stonewalling. Has happened before and its really straining

  • raymond

    So my wife says she is hurt by the way i talk to her so now she wont talk to me at all,for days.

  • sedgwick

    Someone I've done more for than I've ever done for anyone got angry at me over a misunderstanding and has been giving me the silent treatment for three weeks, despite my begging forgiveness. I cannot fathom doing this to another human being, which means I must be worthless if someone would do it to me. It's happened to me before, and given that I lost a job last week as well, I really don't think there is anyplace left on earth for me. I can't do anything right, even when I give and give. I love this person, and I loved my job. I'm trying to figure out the best way of killing myself and being done with it. So if you're reading this and you're giving someone the silent treatment or considering it, know that there's someone out here who left the earth because of it, and ask yourself how you'd feel if your target did what I'm going to do this weekend.

  • SickeningSilence

    Yes, I am brokern hearted that I am currently on the receiving end of the silent treatment for the second time due to receiving a very late reply to an invitation from a good friend that had been discussing the party with me the whole time. She called me during the party to tell me she was out shopping so I said, "That's fine, but the late response is a little rude and why do you bother with the friendship." She responded with, "Fine, then I won't bother you," and it's been 7 weeks of silence despite my texting her. This is the second time...The first time it was four months of silence..No More!!!!!!!!!!! Now I texted her that I was cutting her off because of her emotional abuse. I see her once in awhile at my daughter's school and she won't even look at me. Over something so small how can someone be so cruel to use this tactic?

  • Mrs. E

    Dear suicidal - sedgwick - Jan 12th 2013,

    I am in your same situation a job loss and in a relationship with a man that I love. He has always used the silent treatment when he is at fault in any situation that I call him on. I have learned to live with it. I have seeked counseling and it has helped me . Now after 38 years of marriage the silience has put me in a state of somewhat bondage. I am going to soon get out of the relationship. I just made 60 years old and want to live longer without the stress of a 62 year old man still using the silent treatment. So pray about your situation and God will direct you accordingly. Life is beautiful and You are a treasure and a gift from above....

  • Mike Mugen

    I would be married five months as of valentines day.

    My fiancée passed away in July of 2012. Everything was a disaster, is a disaster...

    I had to be long distance due to other circumstances. I am 26. She was 32, a single mother. I didn't know her child very well. She knew I was a friend... I was migrating into the child's life.

    Now, many months later... I have tried and tried to be apart of the family I yearn for... I try to be the father this child never had nor I...

    I was kind of a secret up till the end... My fiancée screamed for me, my better half died without me... I knew it happened, I felt her... I cried and didn't know why, my heart stopped and I knew something happened.

    i tried forever to get in touch with someone for 11 days. I finally received a god awful forward text message from my old lady's phone 11 days after she died. Stating someone from a blocked number kept calling...etc. I didn't know what to make of it.

    Finally after several days, the young girl who'd be my sister now, started communicating with me. Putting on a show... I covered the child's bio fathers child support as I couldn't be there for the time being and still can't, since the bios parents ( gparents father of the child ) came into the picture...

    Now my would be sister gone, moved.

    My would be brother is who I'm communicating with. I take his loss into consideration. I love these people, even though they took my girl from me. Told her that she didn't need me. Because they didn't understand hers and my relationship...

    My would be brother says I can help when I want, with things. But won't tell me where they are now.. Won't answer questions directly. I'm not allowed to talk to the child I yearn for. The grandparents don't like their granddaughter calling me dad and not their loser son in jail for many years...

    I pay for a cellphone for her. But they took it... They're changing her name and are very wealthy.

    I know my brothers hurting, as I am too, very still much in love with such beauty by nature. Captivated by my girls resonating power that still holds me...

    We both have PTSD. Both very colorful backgrounds... He's much older then me as well... Talks many ways... I won't get into behavioral science but the silence and not answering certain things...

    all I want is to love this family who's apart of my old lady. Who I want to know my heart... I believe my girl and I are twin flames, such beauty destined for the afterlife. This was a re entery to society and civilization... I don't belong in this era...

    I'm going insane....

  • Anonymous-18

    I give silent treatment b/c I'm afraid that I may actually say what I'm thinking and hurt my boyfriends feelings. Normally, after I have attempted to tell my boyfriend something about 10 times and I am blown off or ignore and then asked to repeat myself because the commercial was that interesting.....I usually decide at that point to discontinue wasting my breath and just shutup. He really hates this but I also hate being ignored and being treated like a tape recorder with the pause, play, and rewind commands that he tries to get me to follow. Contrary to belief I do this because I am hurt and/or angry but not to envoke an apology of any kind. I do it to calm myself down internally since I know if my mouth were open at that point a plethora of obscenities would be flying out instead. I did start this during childhood and it has always worked well for me. I've always been a loner and I don't talk much so when I do say something, I expect to be heard. I know that communicating with words would be a more ideal option for a healthy relationship, however I feel like that theory goes out of the window if everytime my mouth is open my partner's ears are closed.

  • Derek

    Today something happened that really hurt. My wife of over five years pretended like I didn't exist and wasn't even there when I was walking about seven paces behind her calling her name. I said I'd walk her to work and she went out the door...I know she was in a hurry to get to work but she wouldn't even acknowledge me. All the way to school I kept pace with her calling her name progressively louder. I began to get almost scared that there was something the matter with her or at least with her hearing because I called her name a good 15-20 times. But I realized she was doing this on purpose when I caught up to her. At first she lied and said she didn't hear me because of the cars passing by but then addmitted she didn't want to talk to me and was ignoring me because she had to get to work. She had plenty of time to walk there and at the very least could have turned her head around while walking and said, not now Derek but she didn't. When we got to school she went walking off in the direction of her work without even saying see ya later or anything. Whatever kind of stonewalling it was that she just did it hurt and its nothing new but if anyone can offer me some advice that might help I'd be gratefull. I know we need to get back into some marriage counceling because it did help when we went in the past. Lately she has been making excuses as to why she can not continue on in her therapy and as for me I have had a lot but feel as though I need more. Perhaps individual therapy for myself is a good way to help me cope.

  • Anonymous-19

    I received the silent treatment alot when I was growing up. I would come home from school or work after I graduated, only to find my stepmother and father would not speak to me. It was confusing, as I would about drive myself crazy trying to figure out what was wrong, and they wouldn't even look at me to ask them.

    To this day, when someone doesn't speak to me, I feel as if I've done something wrong, even though I know it had nothing to do with me at all. I've learned how to disassociate these feelings somewhat and am getting better about not thinking I did something.

  • Adolfo

    I get the silent treatment from a co-worker, which i will call X.

    Before the silent treatment started, X and I would hang out and would share with each other our thoughts and feelings. and we would have fun. So i thought.

    When my company grew, other people were hired. Suddenly, X stopped focusing any attention on me and always displayed grand gestures of affection and kindness and acceptance to the new members of our office. X stopped engaging me and always seemed occupied when i came around. When i expressed how i felt about X's conduct, i was completely cut off.

    X would speak to, laugh with, and engage everyone in our office, except me. X stoped coming to my office except when someone else was there and would only talk to the other person but not even look at me. More and more, X withdrew looking at me or being a source of aknowlegement or recognition or support.

    This was in October 2009. Today, March 2013, X doesn't look at me and does not engage me unless X is asking me for something to benefit X. I've asked, why X wont talk to me, and X said X doesn't talk to people who don't talk to X. I've told X i feel X wants to physically and emotionally distance X from me, and X said no, you do. i've asked X how come you laugh and talk to others but you don't even look at me, and X said i don't have anything to say to you. Before and during this event, X would normally say,

  • Beaky

    My husband of five years and I had a really serious argument a few days ago. It had stemmed from finding phone calls and Skype messages from a woman in Canada that he had contact with on the Internet . This contact was always while I was working so I hit the roof. Since then my husband has ignored me saying there is nothing to talk about . He just watches me cry and I believe is enjoying seeing say I am sorry again and again . he will not speak to try and resolve things and gives me no indication of what the future holds. I am now beginning to find this cruel and intolerable . he is making me feel all the guilt when really apart from getting very angry I have done nothing to jeopardise our relationship . I still love him and would be heartbroken if it all ended this way but I do not want to become a victim of emotional abuse. Any advise would be great ?

  • Anu

    I have known my husband for a decade now. We were childhood lovers. And we got married 3 years back. Even before marriage he would gv me the silent treatment ( but this lasted for a couple of days ). he had done this to all women in his life. he had not spoken to his mom - 3 years in a row.

    Its been 9 months almost and he hasnt spoken to me. This is second of such espisodes. Anniv gone, my bday gone. He just wont melt. In three years of marriage i dont know when is it that we found peace. When this man is nice he is the best husband. But when he decides to torture you - its hell all the way.

    We filing for divorce soon. In my country, divorce is frowned up. But i am left with no option. I have done everything to please him. Its so draining to say the least.

    Hope he changes and realises how much hes hurting everyone.

    Its comforting to read all the comments. Gives me courage to walk away.

  • Thandeka

    I have been dating this man i dealy love for a year now and everytime we fight he would give the silent treatment and this would go up to days or weeks. I hate it cz i cant voice out my opinions or he will shut down forever. I feel we not going anywhere and iv asked him to get help or allow me to get him help but he refuses.its a standstill. Im not used to this life of no communication and its hard to tolerate and i also dont want to live like this and have the fear to speak abt certain things,i mean thats no life one wants to live. We doesnt want help and my fear is once we take our relationship to the next step our kids would have to live with this in our home and i refuse to live an illtreatfull life.Il give him a chance to be better or im leaving.He will realise that all the people in his life left him coz of this.

  • Pat Yoakley

    I have been marry to this man for over 40 years.when I say something a little smart he would not speak to me for 2weeks.So please don't marry a man like that he will break your heart.I stayed with him because I thought I could not get any body else

  • Heather

    I knew someone who tried that tactic, haha. He's used it against me for six months. I'm done and never communicating with him again.

    There's a lawsuit going on between us, btw. He doesn't know I found out about him stealing something from my company. If he had spoken with me, he would know. He decided not to. At trial I am pressing charges for this theft, and then Mr. Silent Bad A*s will then go to prison.

    I hope he thoroughly enjoys my silent treatment towards him THEN :)

    For lovers: The right way to solve the silent treatment is to return the silent treatment. And: show up happy and laughing with a new lover, be going out all the time giggling with them, and then the following week bring in the moving trucks and make a show of starting loading boxes. You'll be surprised how loose the tongue will get that morning.


    Problem solved :)

    They'll NEVER use ST on ANYBODY again :)

  • Matt

    My wife is this way. Always avoiding questions and giving me nasty looks slamming doors and sulking around the house in front of our children I then would get frustrated and raise my voice what is wrong with this woman? I can't communicate with her. So, I constantly fell into the trap and would become angry.

    This behavior has gone on for years but it was and is always my fault. She never admits any wrongdoing as a matter of fact, she has never apologized to me for anything ever. I want to try and save our marriage because I can't see losing my family, but she will not admit anything and says that she is fine. If I can't find a starting place, is there any hope? I'm at a complete loss, because I can't even talk to her she is never at fault.

    I can't afford couselling, and she would never agree to it anyways. I'm far from perfect, but I want to save my family.

    Do you have any suggestions? Thanks!


  • Luke

    Everyone today are a bunch of self-serving, self-absorbed pansies.

    It's the silent treatment for Christ's sake.

    If grown adults are so hurt or offended by the silent treatment, thinking that it's a terrible form of abuse and control, that grownup has a major insecurity problem.

    Relationships consist of two people, with two different backgrounds, am I right? If two people want to really be with each other for a long time, they have to be willing to change and make sacrifices for each other. If a spouse says or does something that you don't like, you have every right to be upset.

    Obviously, physical abuse is wrong. So, let's try something non-violent. Ok. Let's try the silent treatment. We need something to stick. If you really want to convey a message to your child and have it stick, the silent treatment does work.

    An adult person needs to be educated about your boundaries. Cause and effect still applies, anywhere. Why don't we throw out the concept of cause and effect, and let everyone free to break the law.

    Well, people have every right to defend their boundaries. It's actually more unhealthy to me for a society to only depend on government officials to govern each other. That government could be more harmful when they have absolute power, than any physically abusive husband.

    But, who cares if the government is immoral, right? All that matters is that husbands aren't abusive to their wives in any way, right? Husbands have to play a Ken doll and never object to anything in the marriage... or else, it's abuse, right?

    This society is sick.

  • angel

    When we first started dating, he would suddenly go quiet and not answer calls or even go to the office. I would worry so much. I would drive to his place just to make sure he was okay--he was sleeping.

    His response: I needed time alone. Ok...makes sense but why leave me hanging?

    As the years went by, this "silent treatment" got worse. If I disagreed about something--and I mean only a difference of opinion--he would blow up and not talk to me for days. I would have to beg and plead for him to "forgive" me for making him feel wronged. You know...maybe I was too aggressive while defending my opinion--so, I apologized. I really had no idea what was happening. I have never experienced such behavior.

    if I show disapproval or hurt feelings--silent treatment.

    disagreeing--for example, I don't like a certain color--silent treatment.

    if he was insensitive or yelled at me AND I said something about it or not--silent treatment.

    then, after he'd come around and I'd want to discuss how draining this is--he'd tell me to drop it unless I wanted to keep the "fight" going. Threats.

    this most recent fight is about wanting to go on vacation. He has not talked to me for over a week. He offended me and wanted to force a discussion that I didn't want to have because it was irrelevant. It was a stupid argument. In any case, I told him I loved him. He did not respond. I sent him an email--also, no response for 7 days. He finally responded and only to tell me that I brought this on myself for yelling and showing him contempt, hate, and disapproval. He offended me and was upset that I was angry. He also stated that he has warned me many times about my behavior.

    i can end this by apologizing and promising that it won't happen again, but I'm tired. I don't blame him at all. This is all my fault. I volunteered. I am not a victim. I also will not do this anymore.

  • jenny

    I have a long term friend who uses silent treatment to control our relationshp as well as her other family relatonships. She cut me from her life for three years one time and regularly does not pick up or return my calls I am always at a loss to know why , I have also noticed that she often excludes me from events and that she promises things but aften doesn't fulfill the promise as though the sentiment is suffcient..Despite this I am very fond of her she can be very kind. This last bout of silent tretment has made me realise that I cling to the relationship and that if did not have abandonment issues stemming from childhood I may have either tried to deal with the issue head on or failing this have let go of the friendship.

  • Lauren

    Right now im a dealing with. my boyfriend giving me the silent treatment. i am so hurt i feel less than a person. I love him and it hurts that he would just ignore me because he said something to hurt my feelings and i said how i feel. the pain hurts so bad I wish i could stop crying but in my tears I refuse to call him and say am I sorry cuz i am not. I was respectful when I expressed my feelings so I guess my choice is to ride this out until it ends

  • Anonymous-20

    The silent treatment hurts so badly. My boyfriend of almost 5 years uses it against me all the time. I beg him to talk to me but he just keeps silent. And if he has to say anything, it's usually "Go away" or "I'm busy". It is really painful being on the receiving end of the silent treatment and I would never wish it on anyone. To make matters worse, I also suffer from depression and it usually leads to me crying until I get a migraine.

  • Anon lesbian

    I had been a single mum since my ex and biological mother of our son, left us for another woman and then to move interstate (NSW to NT) seven years before I met my current partner.

    I really thought this was it. I was so in love and thought what we had was perfect. That was until she and her son moved in and the silent treatment started.

    I have now worked out the pattern. Whenever she does something that isn't really fair or very nice, before I can say anything, the silent treatment begins. I then don't know what I've done wrong, usually nothing from what I can tell and it goes on for days. After this amount of time, whatever I might have been upset about is long past (& I'm petty if I bring it up) and there are now things that she can bring up against me because after a few days of trying and still getting the cold shoulder, I withdraw and do my own thing.

    This is then given as part of the reason for the silent treatment, that I withdraw and don't tell her everything.

    Today I said I'd had enough. I just hope I can stick to it. I'm sick of being hurt and blamed.

  • Anonymous-21

    OK. I get that if you haven't talked to someone about a problem beforehand, and then give them the silent treatment, that's passive aggressive and unfair.

    But what if you have talked about a problem before? For instance, me and my bf had friends over last night. Our house was a mess and I've explained before that it's important to me that the house is clean for guests and that it's only fair he help. He just sat on the couch and watched a sports game.

    He also proposed that we do something together yesterday because it was my only day off when we could be together during the day of the week. I've told him before that I expect him to follow through on plans by selecting activities or following up later with me to formulate a plan. He left early yesterday morning for a sports store opening - which he did not mention at all beforehand - and didn't come back until the early afternoon. Half of the day gone and still no plans. And as I said when he did get home he plopped down to watch a game.

    I'm tired of repeating myself. I've talked to him before about stuff like this. When I bring it up he says he understands and that he'll work on it and things get back to the way they were before. Why am I passive aggressive because I don't want to nag him to do things that he obviously doesn't think are important to keep in mind? I don't see that as passive aggressive. I see that as me being fed up harping about something to someone who obviously doesn't care.

    Furthermore, if you are silent and the person supplies a confession of wrongdoing in response to your silence.....they knew they did something wrong to start with! If they're like my bf, they just figure their rude behaviors ok unless you get mad. For instance with the golf thing yesteday, when he got back from the sports store opening at like 1 in the afternoon and saw I was upset, THEN he said "Sorry, there was a store opening in so-and-so city that I didn't want to be late for." He knew he was renigging on his offer to spend time with me before he left. Had I not shown that I was upset about that, he would'nt have apologized and would've just acted like nothing happenned. That's ludicrous. I shouldn't have to get angry for someone to acknowledge that they've behaved hurtfully towards me, particularly not someone who's suppossed to care about me.

    When I'm unfair to him I come forward and say "I think I was unfair." He doesn't have to get upset for me to do that. If I'm wrong I acknowledge it. It's not unreasonable for me to expect the same. And if he can't do that, I'm not going to waste my energy repeatedly asking him to get engaged with the relationship. Either he wants to put in the work or he doesn't.

  • jo

    my husband has been doing this to me since we got married 23 years ago. I initially thought it was my fault, but then as the years went by I realized he is copying his mothers behavior that she displayed on his father. I cried for years because I never experienced this sort thing in my life. He even does it to our son. He has been a very selfish person for years, always buying what he wants for him self and locking it away when he is not home. And he does very little around the house but will do for others when they ask. I eventually fell out of love with him as time went by. I have gotten to the point where I just ignore him and live my life. Im still married because Im religious, I do pray he will eventually grow up and be a man and not such an A-hole.

  • Beck

    So nice to read and see I am not alone. My husband has done this off and on for 23 years. I never know why he just shuts down. He does it to our granddaughter when she has a temper blow but does not let it go. It lasted 9 months yes 9 months one time,, I lived my life on one end of our home and he did the same.I had a job he did not even know where I was working. I offered a divorce, I left for two weeks and decided i have as much right to live in my home as he does and he could leave if he wanted and i came back to my home.Trying to get some reason from him I threatend to throw his big screne tv in the floor and all I got from that was I am done,, nothing more. The day after Christmas I come home to gifts on the table and a necklace on my computer so I would see it I looked at him and it was like "ok I am done". and things went back to normal. I didnt care what the reason was I love my husband even when he acts this way. Well, we are going on a month now he has not said a word to me , If i ask a question he acknowleged with a grunt or a growl. The only difference this time is he has not as of yet moved into the spare room. I am 62 years old I do not want to start over somewhere else I just want my husband back and this to stop. So frustrating and it hurts our granddaughter so bad she misses him and I am seeing her change from my grandpa hung the moon to not caring if he talks to her so sad iI feel sorry for my husband he is pushing the two people that love him the most away. As i mentioned nice to know I am not alone in this helps to hear what other people do.

  • GP

    Oh!! I think I could do with tips that would help me!!

  • sarah

    Hi, long story short, my two adult daughters distanced themselves from me shortly after I divorced their father in 05. Emails became less and less phone calls stopped back in 06. I tried to cope with the pain but entered into therapy a year ago when all I could think of was suicide as a way out from all the pain. I'll be in therapy for the rest of my life. I'm 58 and have literally lived an entire life of abuse, as a child I grew up in a home filled with both physical and mental abuse, I got married at 19 ... "he" ended up emotionally abusing me for the last 25 years of the marriage and now my children ( 30 & 34) are abusing me with silence. I ask God every day... "why".... "was I such a terrible person in a past life and punishment is this life?" I don't ask why anymore, I didn't do anything to deserve's not my fault.

  • Anna

    I never realised until I read the above comments that so many people suffered from the Silent Treatment. My ex husband was like this off and on for over 5 years. During the time of the Silent Treatment, he wouldn't even stay in the same room as me. I was a fool and left his meals on the table which he would only eat if I went out of the room. I continued to do all the household chores and he just came and went as he pleased. Often this would go on for 4 weeks or more until one day he appeared to have forgiven me.

    I could kick myself now for saying

  • Gaya

    I'm 33 weeks pregnant, always tired and busy. I do all the house work while taking care of my 2 kids. I cook two times per day. Everyday I have to make breakfast for my husband and a heavy lunch for him to take to work. I'm not complaining, I still can do it, but I do it while getting silent treatment from him. He's been giving it for 2 weeks now. and I don't have a penny in my purse because I'm a full time mum and he's stopped giving me the pocket money I need for my personal expenses. And I'm getting all this crap because I refused to accept his friend's invitation to spend a day in adventure world. his friend phoned him more than 5 times bugging him to come and every time I refused telling I'm too tired to have fun. Instead of respecting my point of view now he's stubbornly so silent. This stinky situation is killing me but I try to stay strong because of kids. My husband is a psychiatrist. A Consultant Psychiatrist. It's funny when I think whom I should tell my problems to when I get the silent treatkent by a Psychiatrist himself.

  • WW

    It took me many years of mariage to understand what behavior my wife was choosing and why everything I did was a failure.

    I try to have a conversation to negogiate an agreed way ahead but she will agree and then not keep her commitment. If I have not read her mind she will sulk arroung the house and even though I ask what is wrong she will say "there is nothing wrong".

    Our tradition, when leaving the house alone to go somewhere (i.e. work or shopping, etc.) is to give the other a good bye kiss. When she is in the silent treament mode she will not even come near to offer a kiss but will say "I'm leaving." as she walks sulkingly by me to leave. It is then that I know I have done something or have not done something. I'm just not sure which!

    When we do finally start talking she will say something like this: there is a list of "honey-dues" that she has made but I do not initiate the effort to do them. But when I ask her to negogiate with me on what she would like to have accomplished on her list - she responds that I should know what needs to be done.

    In the end I allow myself to be provoked and then she is able to say my voice is raised and I am angry.

    This has been her way of manipulating me to do what she whats, when she whats it and where she wants it. Since coming to a knowledge of passive-aggressive behavior - I have realized that this is a behavior her Mom does her sister does (she has been thru 2 husbands), her aunt does this and her grandmother on her mother's side does.

    In our first years of marriage I asked her to go with me to counseling on several occasions and even made the appointments so we could go. But she refused to go as she did not like being questioned about her behavior!

    I wish I had understood this sooner - this behavior sucks!

    This passive-aggresive behavior is unfair! I can not read her mind!

    I am emotionally drained and tired....

  • Peggy

    I believe that the pain of the transgression is what causes the silent treatment... We believe that if the person really love us,,,How could they cause us such,,,,pain.....

  • Taina

    I am so glad that I found this webpage about "Silent Treatment". Its really sad to read that so many people are suffering daily and for years. I am 63 years old and married 2 years ago to a man that I knew when I was about 18. He is 63 to. We both had divorces and throught that when we found each it was a blessing.We married within 6 mo into the relationship although we had communication problems from day one. There were flags but I wanted it to work so bad. Similarly to other writers, everytime I have a difference of opinion or tell him about something I dont like, he goes of, starts a fight, accuses me of being jealous, or not knowing what I am talking about and ends with the silent treatment. He has not communicated with me for a week. We have managed to go back and forth, but I am done. recently he did the same thing to his mom who he lives with and told me that she did the same to him. Its obvious that its a learned behaviour complicated by a very controling mother. I suffer from depression and he told me that people who take meds are weak. Those words did it. I know that depression is a health problem. I know that this has to end but its so hard.

  • Dee

    Taina, thank you for the posting I truly feel for you, moreover I found myself dealing with the same issue, I had no knowledge of the "Silent Treatment" or what it was about… I started dating a woman in 2012 and a few months later I saw the "Silent Treatment" for the first time over noting after a few days I told her I was sorry and everything went back to normal.

    About a year later I asked her to Mary me and we had a disagreement and the "Silent Treatment" came back this time because I responded to a text with the words “So What” and she texted me back “you’ll pay for that” for that she did not speak, take my calls or respond to my texts for 30 days. During this time I did some research on the "Silent Treatment” and found it was a form of abuse after reading numerous articles on the "Silent Treatment” I had to make a choice “to be or not to be” married to this women.

    So when we started talking again I told her to her face… I love you and I want you in my life, but I will not stand for the "Silent Treatment" i.e., that was not cool and don’t do it again. About a year ½ later on vday I got her a dozen roses but did not make dinner plans for that night, I made plans for the whole day on Saturday.

    That was not good enough and she went silent for 26 days, when she did start speaking to me I told her "Silent Treatment" was abusive and punitive treatment and she needed to give me my 6K ring back.

    I feel bad for doing that however, it’s better to feel bad now then allow someone to abuse your love for life.

    Good Luck…

  • Anonymous-22

    I am currently in a silent relationship. I am struggling with and am unsure how to deal with it. I love him deeply, but just don't know what todo.

  • Anonymous-23

    I lived my husband for 28 years and twice left and third time I did.

    He was not a horrible man and he was pleasant to people yet I left my marriage with this feeling of being the one in the wrong and felt quite subservant.

    My ex husband did not like to show emotion other than cynical jokes and occasional sarcassum. He never liked making decisions with regards to our daughters and he wanted to be seen as only the good guy in there eyes.

    He wanted me in his business and to run it for him plus look after the family.

    He did not want to know about the finance side i had to take care of it however if things went wrong it was my fault not his.

    He did not yell or anything like that however if I got cross he would call me crazy or walk away . If he did stay he would only respond he would say if I was rational however then he would not really say much . Mostly he walked away and would give me the silent treatment until i apologised or he would one or two words . I had lived with a mother who gave the silent treatment and sister and could not bear so i was always the one who had to patch up any disagreements. If he wanted to be intimate then he would stroke my arm as an indication he felt in the mood. If i bought anything for myself which was rare then he would want something. Was this man passive aggressive?

  • Anonymous-24

    This article illuminates the psychology behind the silent treatment and I've found it helpful. I'm being shunned right now and it causes feelings of frustration, anger and assumed guilt. I've either said something or not said something, or done something or not done something - ultimately though, I know its all about power. I always ask what's wrong but I'm never told. I'm currently holed up in my study until she goes to bed because the atmosphere in the house is icy.

  • Anonymous-25

    My husand has sulked on and off for our nearly 30 years of marriage, sonehow it always seem to be my fault, when our son was young he just stopped speaking to him and me for no reason for days. He puts the blame onto me as I always seem to be doing the wrong thing in his eyes - I have no friends outside my family life, he used to say it is ok to go out with peolple from my work but then wouldn't speak to me for days no point in even mentioning doing anything now I feel. Life is so lonely and going to get worse when I am older with no one but him. I have been so many years without friends I don't know how to react

  • Helen

    Thank you for sharing this article. My sister has been giving me the silent treatment for 9 months. She came to visit my parents back then and that was first time she spoke with me in 6 months. Prior to that, it was a year. My sister and I went through a difficult period during a very painful period in my life. While I know that I was not at my best during this time, she had no room for empathy. My offenses however were: Not being as joyful as I usually am. Not agreeing with her. Not going on a trip with her (but part of this painful period was due to financial issues). Not bringing the entire family to her daughter's first communion (even though my daughter and I travelled 600 miles to be with her).

    When I reached out to her to try and work through this, I was met with anger, blame. I would spend the entire phone conversation defending myself or be in disbelief of what she was saying. On my 40th Birthday she called and spent the next hour yelling at me and then hung up on me.

    I have gone to therapy in an attempt to understand what went wrong and also "fix" what I was doing wrong. Through therapy, I learned that I have been the scape-goat for emotional baggage in my family for a very long time. I was always the first to apologize and also the one to buffer. During this painful time, I couldn't do that. I was stretched too thin.

    For the first time, I reacted in a human way and natural way. It was probably the most emotionally honest time up until this point of my life. I was not cruel. I was not mean. I just was different.

    Through therapy, I have grown stronger and I am so much more gentle with myself, but my sister won't talk with me. I feel like she died. I feel like she cut me off and I never had a say. It has been the most painful experience in my life and it makes me so sad.

    She speaks to my parents. They live right down the road, so she will come into town, but she won't call me. I have shared this pain with my mother, but it is not her job to fix this. I truly wish I could turn off this saddness and walk away, but I just can't bring myself to do this.

    We will always be sisters. We will always be family. We shared a childhood. I don't understand how she can speak with my parents and not want to have anything to do with me or my family.

  • Dian

    I have been with this man for 3 years. He is 62 and I am 59. This relationship has been tough and at first I was not sure if this would continue but it is getting worse, more frequent episodes. I sought counselling for this. We initially had plans to go to Florida for 10 days over Thanksgiving and he was in a bad mood, told me to leave so I did and stayed away from him for 5 months. Wedi not go to Florida! Wasn't going to have him give me the silent treatment there. Started seeing each other again and of course he was nice for a while but got back to the demeaning silent treatment. Last episode was a few days ago over what I believe was plans changed. He wanted to go to church that evening but I had a meeting and stopped to visit my ailing father. Called and he said we could go to church Sunday. When I arrived at his place he was rather quiet, didn't think much about it and I asked if he wanted to grab a quick bite to eat as we had planned to do so after church that evening. He retorted that it would have been nice if I would have bought a pizza, impossible as I was on the interstate and he didn't ask me too. As a result the rest of the weekend was ackward and Sunday it turned into an ackward situation with him blaming me for being in a bad mood. I was trying to keep peace by being a little quiet and accomodating. He couldn't see how he set the stage for a horrible weekend and started his silent treatment to punish me. Tried making amends but only got worse. He had previously stated he decides how long this

  • Anonymous-26

    I am adult and my mother and I got in a huge arguement over soemthing stupid. I was not "right" in the matter, nor was she. My mother has an attitude that she can say what she wants and no one should be offended. She treats others with such disrepsect. Her unhappiness is every one's fault but her own. I have heard all this all my life. I finally had enough and exploded and told her that. She responded by giving me the silent treatment. This is something she has done to me since childhood. We had to be around one antoher this weekend and I just told her "I'm not playing your games, you win, enjoy your prize". She tried to act as thou she had no clue what I was talking about. I refuse to beg her i told her I was no longer a child and did not have to be around nor did i have to have her attention or her approval. As much as this hurts me, i cannot continue with her. She was verbally and emotinaly abusive growing up. She has always blamed everything on depression, which i know depression is real, and I believe she suffers from depression. However, when does personal responsibilty come into place? I'm just so tired of stuggling with my mother and her constant unahppiness and complaints.

  • Rejected

    I need to vent badly!!! I am a newly wed and it has already begun. My husband is passive aggressive and possibly a narassist. He has used the silent treatment on me a couple of times in the past but I beleive I may have surprized him with my responses which were the opposite of what he expected, so his episodes didn't last long.

    Today, the episode has been going on for hours and began as a result of something so minor (in my opinion) it's unbelievable! Clearly he has upped the ante. LOL It hurts like hell to be ignored, and answered in monosyllables but I know that the best way to deal with it is not to let him know that he is having any effect on me, and to avoid getting upset at all cost. Boy is it hard!!!!

    He usually waits for me to do or say something that he can use to turn the tables on me. Like if I just give up and stop talking to him, he'll accuse ME of rejecting HIM. So today, in order to avoid any accusations, I simply told him that I would be here for him if he wanted to talk, if he wanted sex, if he wanted ANYTHING! So he knows now that the ball has been put in HIS court! I suspect it must be very frustrating for him but he's not giving up. The silence continues....

    My personality type is one that does not tolerate B-ll Sh-- to well. I am an extremely self sufficient woman, and I do not need this man for anything (finances or otherwise), expect that I wanted someone to love. So its really very very easy for me to tell him to go to hell, knowing that this behaviour is NEVER going to change. (At least not without a miracle!) But I am trying my best to read and understand WHY a big grown man would use this tactic when a simple discussion and possible compromise would easily solve the problem......UNBELIEVABLE!! Gosh! If I don't laugh, I'd scream!!

  • Sick and Tired

    I'm at the point I want to treat my relationship like a business transaction, because all the love in me is fading away, there is some there. But I lock up, I keep it safe, so I will have hope in something. It belongs to God and I save it for him. Because without him, I would be so unhappy. I still have joy, despite of how my husband acts, how he treats me and mentally abuses me. I love me, I love me enough! I want to scream, I want to cry, I gave up being love. I love my kids, but it isn't enough. The silent treatment sucks, it makes you feel like you are not good enough, that you are less, like they are better than you. Anyone who is reading this and you are in a relationship and you get the silent treatment, RUNNNN, they won't change.

  • Henry

    i use to break down and take whatever blame just so my wife would talk to me. Nowadays I leave the house, turn off my cell phone and go do what I want to do. Usually visit family because she never likes to go.

    i work hard all week. I hate when she does that. So no she can sit and soak in her silence while I live my life in a positive fashion. I refuse to be part of her depressed mode.

  • Haley

    my boyfriend and I have been dating for almost two years now. We were long distance for one year. Before that, however, we were close friends. One day (the day winter break started) he just stopped talking to me. He gave me the silent treatment for 4 months. It was one of the worst pains imaginable because I had to see him every day in classes. We even had to work together once, and while I tried to talk to him he would just grunt or straight up leave the room. After a few months I confronted him and he acted all innocent and pretended nothing had even happened. I know that should have been a huge red flag but I was in love with him. We dated for a few months then he moved off to college and I was stuck in my hometown. very often he would suddenly not reply to text messages for weeks at a time and make up lies as to where he was and why he was not texting back. I was never overbearing at all, I just asked for respect. I thought that when I moved with him (as he suggested and was VERY excited about) it would get better. However, in the few months I've been here, he has shut me out numerous times for a few days at a time, and ignore me. He also claims to have never done anything he said in the past when he disappears, and I am just not sure when I am supposed to believe him anymore. Currently, he is compulsively cleaning the entire apartment whI know, right I am just sitting here trying to talk to him. If I try to walk by him he either tells me to move or get out of his way, and leave me crying in the hall. He does not even look at me when he passes me. He will no't talk to me and when he does he is very passive aggressive and rude. I do not know what to do. Someone please help me i am hurting inside.

  • Magellan

    Hurt and confused. If you stay in this relationship you will spend a lot of time being hurt and confused. I've been in my relationship for 34 years now and I've spent a lot of time being hurt and confused. I met him when I was young and didn't have much self esteem to allow myself to be treated this way. It's been that way from the beginning. Right now I'm going on three weeks of the silent treatment because I had the nerve to be hurt by something he's done. See whether you've done something or he did something you will be punished with the silent treatment. And if you try to talk to him about it he will ignore you, roll his eyes at you. He will stonewall you to frustration and when you get angry at being treated this way he will turn it around on you and finally open his mouth to say see you're the problem. If you get an apology you'll have to ask for it. But he'll do it again again. You'll be expected change yourself to accept to be treated this way. You'll have to practice every thing you say to him to make sure you don't say anything to offend him. It will be easy to offend him because it's a conversation he doesn't want have. I'm not perfect and I reflect on behavior if I've done something and apologize. When he finally decides to talk to me which is very rare.|It is usally complaints about me. I sit there and listen to him and validate his feelings and aplogize when I've hurt him. I treat him the way I want to be treated. But it's so few and far between. The years will go by and the love you have for him will be burried under the pile of resentment and anger of all the unresolved issues. Run in the opposite direction. Meet some else and observe the relationships in his family. That will show you how you will be treated. Wish I new than what I know now.

  • Anonymous-27

    This message is to highlight a silent treatment intended to hurt your partner is abuse. It is incredibly painful and destroys a relationship. I have been through this recently with the person who I thought was the love of my life. Do not blame yourself. If you come from a home where everyone discussed concerns in a civil and respectful manner it is very difficult to deal with an individual who puts you through this type of pain. I have had to endure a week of no contact, no ideas where they were, no answered calls. There was no reason for this extreme reaction to my expressing my needs. I have not left the relationship yet but it is destroyed now. My trust is gone and I am not sure I still love a person who could hurt me so badly. They did not apologize for the behavior. I had to make them aware that they hurt me.

    Leave the relationship. You deserve someone who will meet your needs. I wish my boyfriend if he was angry, would tell me " I need some time to cool off, I love you but I am going to stay at my Brothers for the night". Instead they are gone for a week. No communication.

  • Theresa

    I'm really fed up with my husbands behaviour. i feel so lonely and don't even know why I'm still with him after 10 years. It's just soul sucking. It's always my fault, the word sorry doesn't exist. I don't ever remember him just telling me he loves me. I feel unloved and unappreciated. He tells me I'm uncaring but shuts me out when I try to get close. right now he's been sleeping in the spare room for 3 weeks, when we sit in the same room all he does is sulk. I used to ask him what was wrong then I realised I was the fool. He' l only talk about the children and nothing else. He doesn't really socialise, when I've had people visit he'll ignore them and make them feel unwelcome which is very embarrassing for me. The list is endless but im fed up!

  • Anonymous-28

    I find it very interesting that all of the comments I've read have been from the victims of partners who use the Silent Treatment as a weapon. In my case, I found this article as I am trying to work out how to talk to my partner about an issue in our relationship that is bothering me. What came to mind was that my own behaviour in approaching this issue is sometimes quite passive aggressive, and yes, sometimes I go silent and a bit monosyllabic on him - though never to the extent that some people's partner's go to from these comments. It's perhaps a couple of hours of moodiness at the most. It is pretty humbling to realise what an immature approach this is, and how it can escalate into something so much worse.

    I suppose I just felt placed to give some insight from the other side of the coin. My 'silent/monosyllabic' treatment comes from a place of feeling very vulnerable and unsure of myself, and dreading conflict in the relationship (yes I see the irony!) - when I do it, I am frustrated with myself, and wishing I could just scream and swear and say all of the things that were on my mind. Very often I go and type out long rants which are what I would say if only I had the courage to do so. Now I know that this isn't healthy, and I know that it isn't indicative of a long happy relationship ahead... and I really love this guy and think we are good for each other aside from these communication issues. Hence me reading up and trying to resolve things.

    I suppose I just wanted to provide a little balance - although what your partners are doing is horrible, it does probably stem from serious issues of their own: that doesn't make it acceptable of course, but if you have a love and friendship worth fighting for, beyond the silent treatment, it's perhaps worth considering whether there is ever a good moment to ask your partner what is going on with them when they go silent if they have a head full of things to say but are scared of saying them. Perhaps as a compromise, they could start by typing stuff out and letting you read it... of course, if they're not willing to engage in something like that, or go silent on you for daring to bring it up, then probably things have gone too far to resolve :-)

    I would be happy if my partner initiated such a discussion - I realise that the important thing is to be confident (and brave!) enough to start the discussion myself. The basic fear is rejection I guess. What if I start a conflict and he doesn't like what I have to say? What if he disagrees? What if it ends up with us breaking up? From a rational viewpoint, those would all be good growth points for the relationship, and if a conflict resulted in break-up, I do know that means it wasn't the best one for you. It's also ironic that if this fear of conflict is behind passive aggression in other people, the very thing they use to combat that ends up being even more destructive. Anyway, I'm rambling now, but I hope my thoughts were potentially helpful to someone. As for me, I guess I have to keep on pushing myself to grow through this issue...

  • Heather

    After months of stoney silence from my P/A Husband i'd had enough and asked him to leave. Since then, i've found out that he had another person waiting in the wings!!! It was an ex girlfriend! We'd been married 13 yrs (today would have been number 14) He moved in with her very quickly and has since moved to another city. He is hard core passive aggressive. Will he do the same things to her that he did to me? He hasn't started any form of divorce proceedings? Her facebook says they are engaged..his doesn't till you scroll down? There are no pictures of them together on either one? It seems as if he's holding onto his past life with me? His family when they found out what he'd done, and with who..they told him he messed up his lfe, his brother actually laughed pretty hard at him..Wouldn't take his old cell phone number off his facebook (it's my phone and number) was sending texts through facebook to that phone all the time (was that to get my attention?) i had to hack in an delete it. Won't take his name off bills here? Can someone reassure me that he's not going to change? I've heard they get worse as they get older (he's just turned 40)?

  • Ruby

    My boyfriend is currently giving me the silent treatment for five weeks now. He he has blocked my phone number and has sent a couple emails, but if I write back there is no response. This is his way. I've told him it is abusive which doesn't seem to matter. Every time he does this the only recovering comes when I apologize and take full responsibility for whatever preceded the silent treatment. I am a 49 year old woman and I've never experienced anything like this. I am stunned at his ability to completely shut me out of his life usually for just expressing a difference of opinion. I love this man very much and am devastated By the insanity.

  • Heather

    I have been married for 19 years and the silent treatment has been a constant off and on in our marriage. We married young and were different people then, it didn't seem to be a big deal at the time. Now I know otherwise.

    This go around it's only been two days thus far. No speaking, no response to being spoken to, no acknowledgement at all. Sleeping on the coach by choice, not because he was asked to. The most hurtful thing is that he treats our son like this also. This started because he was having a disagreement with our son and I told him I thought there was a better way to handle the situation. He said he wished I would be a wife and not always a mother. In other words, because you’re my wife you have to agree with me, even if you disagree.

    I askd him if he was going to continue to just ignore me and act as if I didn't exist in the house when we were there together. He said until we talk about the disagreement he has nothing to say to me. I pointed out it was difficult to speak to someone that would not speak to you. No response.....I ask how long he planned on sleeping on couch. He stated, I could sleep on the couch next week, or I could go somplace else.

    The truth is I'm over it. I'm over watching our dysfunctional relationship affect our son the way it is. I'm over being with someone that doesn't want to be in the same room as me. I'm over being treated as if me, our son and the life we have is disposable because he is mad.

  • Anonymous-29

    silent treatment is like im guessing being blind folded blindsided and spinning around in a mental evaluation of stuff you could have done wrong or being accused by the time you pick one topic the silent treatment person will now make you that person and thats my thoughts on silent treatment it is NOT HUMANE it is INSANE. LOVE YA AMERICAN LOVE STORY

  • Bernadette

    Oh my. After reading all these comments I realized I am not alone. I have been in a relationship with a man for almost 4 years and every time we would have a disagreement, which was not often, he would not talk to me for days, even though I tried many attempts at calling him or emailing him so that we could talk things through. Today, I just couldn't take it anymore. The last disagreement we had was because I like mustard on my hot dog and he hates mustard. He and his son ganged up on me as if I had committed a crime. I was in disbelief. At other times he could be gentle and kind but I felt the silent treatment was tearing me apart so much and causing me so much lonliness and loss of confidence because I felt I was always the wrong one. Believe me, I know I am not always right, but at least I would always communicate with him because I loved him deeply and still do. But I have to love myself more now. I can't take the silence anymore. It's tearing me apart. Thank you all for sharing your stories. I pray that we all gain strength back and love for ourselves.

  • Blue

    I am not alone in this drama i could say after reading all the comments. Im in a long distance relationship with my bf now for 4 months and things went well between us. We saw each other last 2 weeks for 6 days and all went pretty well until i came back to my country. We were perfectly fine after i came back until 2 days back he message me in email that his phone is not working properly or having some breakdown so he cant message me in social media ...i did nor received any message from him for at least 5 days now only the last one which says " im so sorry about this circumstance, just give me a little time and everything will be ok and dont forget to read your books ( books that he gave me before we part each other)". this is just so upsetting for me and leaves me with so many questions in my mind. Perhaps he has someone with him, or he realize where not meant to be etc. But still i think this is not man enough if he just intent to break it up... i rest my case!

  • Anonymous-30

    I have been for years the person who tries to solve problems with my partner. we have been together for about 11 years and it always seems to be me either taking charge or resolving an issue, but when it comes to my feelings and needs which seem to be pushed to the side, after many arguments about emotional needs and respect it still feels like my partner is not listening to, im done talking and im tired of fighting. I feel that now its a case of well I better shut up and just do my own thing. please.I love him but it feels like pieces of me have been chipped away until no emotion for him is left. I know we need help but how can I convey this to him.

  • Cree

    Lss, after 25 years my HS boyfriend contacts me on FB, turned out he lives 1.5 hours from me, separated and reconnectdd. We spent weekends together, talked so much, had a wonderful time for 2 months. While apart over the holidays we kept in touch, things progressed well. One day I noticed a photo on his FB page, I clicked his friend page and saw a pic of him and her while I was away. I asked him who she was, (I already knew most ppl on his list, we grew up together) he realized I saw the pic on HER page and flipped out on me! Got up started pacing, yelling at me that I was snooping, etc. I was a friend on his list too, everybody scrolls, that's what FB is! Anyway he was screaming at me, I left for work crying, I unfriended him so he'd have privacy, he went further and blocked me. Back and forth texting, phone calls for 4 weeks, he held a grudge against me for 4 weeks about this even though I felt disrespected because she posted a photo of him and her and since our relationship was new we didn't have any photos of us posted (when in fact he invited me to look at his friend pages) I digress. He says he needs time to think if he wants to continue to see each other because he doesn't trust me. Within those 4 weeks of fighting and MY trying to make up with him, it's a constant fight about this photo. I asked him a few time, "do you want to continue this relationship?" and "where do we stand?" He keeps saying "I need time to think" I just think he's a coward and afraid to end it, so he acts irrational so I will end it. My questions are: is it common for a bipolar person to explode about a small issue or conflict? Unable to let it go, revisit and blame me for "what I did" I admit finding the photo, apologized for violating his privacy and he STILL holds a grudge. Also, I unfriended him on the FB site to give him his privacy, he took it further and blocked me on FB. He said "you unfriended me so I hit you harder and blocked you." I think this is so irrational and stupid but is this considered normal outburst/reason to explode for a bipolar person? the text messages are awful, he calls me names and defends his "friend" who he's known only 4 months over me, it unbelievable how he's acting toward me. Yesterday he blocked me on his phone. So lss, he turned everything around on me, kept the fight going by hammering it at me everyday, verbally abuses me, blocks me from his FB and phone. He turned into a nightmare. Are these outrageous outbursts common with bipolar people? Small issues turned into a nightmare? I'd live some insight. Thanks

  • aaa

    I know him for almost 4 years and we are married for 2 and a half years.

    I am a lively, open, extrovert person, but he is my opposite. I liked from the very beginning how he could listen to me and his ability to balance my extrovert personality.

    But there are some problems that arised especially for about one year. He has no friends (not even one, cause he is the selfsuficient type), he works from home and makes good money. Me, on the other hand, I could always communicate easily with people and the world around me inspires me. I really need it to grow...But he hates to get outside.

    He prefers to stay home, to watch movies or television. He doesn't like to get out and doesn't tolerate when I am doing it.

    I talked to him...I begged him to understand my need (cause I feel like I'm dieing inside the house and I end feeling trapped) to get outside from time to time, to be with friends and to communicate with the people we both know. He always sais he understand me, but each time I'm going out with my friends or colleagues he gets upset and gives me the silent treatment. Each time I ask him to come with me, he refuses.

    I don't know what he hopes to resolve acting like this, but for sure he will not be able to find the result he's expecting for. Cause each time he is acting so hostyle, I feel like I don't want to go home to be exposed on such a horrible feeling he is giving me.

    I'm affraid he is going to lose me if he will not stop this...

  • Clay

    I have been married 13 years. I don't think I can make it anymore. I feel so embarrassed and guilty to say that. Deep down I don't want to believe it. I know God hates divorce but I don't want to invest another 13 and then finally have to call it quits in order to keep my sanity. She makes me feel like I am guilty and dirty all the time. I just want someone to love me, someone that will reciprocate the same emotions I pour into her.

    We both agree that we bring out the worst in each other. Her silent treatment brings out my frustration and anger. More anger when I was younger, now it's defeat and depression. This last week I decided I didn't care to play the game anymore and of course now she is ready to call it quits. It's like I am the glue that holds us together. If I don't constantly beg her for forgiveness we can't progress and have a relationship. It's like I am trapped into being a repetative gerbel. Running on the wheel and never arriving.

    She won't go to counseling and I have been begging. When she gets offended and angry she won't touch me, won't look at me or smile. Just completely ignores me. It's like I am not in the room. That I am insignificant and unworthy. It's so icy and miserable. It's painful to see her radiate her beautiful smile onto our children, it's like that is another form of punishment, because you wish it was you she would smile at and build an alliance and relationship with you. But instead you are a stranger on the outside until you play the blame game. Once you ask for forgiveness, that just justifies them that you are the one with the problem and allows them to continue treating you and others that way. I try to always be the peacemaker and ask for forgiveness because God commands us to do so. But I feel now that I don't want to ask her for her forgiveness anymore, because all I do is empower her to treat me this way over and over. It's a vicious cycle. Sin to leave her, it's sin to ruin your 4 kids live, it's sin to not obey God and ask her for forgiveness. But she will never ask you for forgiveness. It's so one sided. Like you are living in a horror film, living a slow motion suicide.