Dealing with the silent treatment - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-24-2014, 03:09 PM Thread Starter
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Dealing with the silent treatment

Has anyone been on the receiving end of the silent treatment from their spouse? My husband and I are currently separated and living in separate places. We have discussed reconciling here and there, however, no real effort has been made on his part. I want to reconcile very much.

My husband's favorite form of "abuse" in our marriage was the silent treatment. A way to make me feel unimportant and completely absent from his thoughts. I always knew it was a controlling tactic and I would try my best to remember that it was not my fault. It was a very immature way for him to deal with any "issue" in our marriage.

We remain in contact through text messages and have seen each other on occasion for lunch or dinner throughout our 3/4 months not living together.

I had plans this past weekend to go out with a bunch of friends from Friday through Monday out of town, which he knew about. I guess I really wasn't surprised that despite my attempts to be in contact with him over the weekend, to say "Hello" via text etc., that he completely went silent from Thursday evening to Monday night. Then claimed he was "studying" all weekend, hence why he never responded to me. Deep down, I know that this was his form of punishment as I was going out and having a great time and not sitting at home, crying over him.

Although I am smart enough to realize this game, it still hurts so much that he chooses to do this to me especially when communication is SO important. I would really appreciate any input or advice from members on TAM which have a spouse who chooses the silent treatment I would love some words of support and encouragement.

Last edited by slb121; 01-24-2014 at 03:14 PM.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-24-2014, 03:14 PM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

He's demonstrating how interested he is in reconciling with you. My advice... Pay attention to what he's showing you.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-24-2014, 03:32 PM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

Hi slb. My ex was a major fan of using the silent treatment-for days and weeks at a time.

I can tell you that nothing hurt me/has hurt me more of the thins he did to me more than his silent treatment. I mean that sincerely. People who have not lived it don't understand what ti's like to be at the receiving end of that.

it is emotional abuse.

You are separated. I say do not get back together with him. If he truly wanted to make an effort, he would. You know that. I have found that people who do this--it tends to get worse over time. it did for me.

The last time my ex went silent on me lasted for about 3 weeks... and I moved out.

He had involved other women/sought out other women and even that did not hurt me as much as when he would completely ghost me.

There were days I did not even want to come home. It makes you feel like you are going crazy. It is very invalidating.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-28-2014, 09:29 PM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

Ouch slb, that sounds extremely painful.

I've dealt with the silent treatment from my W, but not to the extent you have with H.

When they do this they are attempting to control us, make us fall in line.

My advice, which you may already be doing, is to never let it work for him. If the behavior is rewarded, he will continue.

DO be sure to reward positive behavior though, and thank him for it. Best wishes.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 02:27 AM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

I don't have any advice, but I just wanted to say I am dealing with the silent treatment too and it really sucks.

A therapist clued me in that this is actually a form of abuse; I had no idea until he gave me some materials to read; I found Victory Over Verbal Abuse by Patricia Evans to be really enlightening.

Good luck to you.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-01-2014, 11:59 PM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

I resorted to the silent treatment/sleeping in another bed in my marriage, it was rare, but was a component of our breakup I'm sure.

I grew up in a very abusive / physical home and I do not like to fight and don't seek them. I will discuss, I will listen, but I will not be screamed/yelled at or having someone feel they can work me over then go straight to bed.

It's not an excuse. I knew it was wrong but for me it was "reset" button for a night. In my situation I felt it was mirroring the behavior of my wife. It was rare, but she seemed to like to fight right as she went to bed, would do it, then go to bed. I'd think on things and a few times a year go to another bed. I generally sought to talk/and or listen the next day.

There is no excuse for my behavior.

I won't do it again in my life. But I also have to figure out if someone "pushes my buttons" (I don't believe anyone can make you mad, it's how you react but I'm not perfect).

I never could figure out how if I did it, it was abuse but if my wife did it, or came unglued or ranted / raved she was not at fault.

It's a habit that can be broken. Looking back, I wish we had done some marriage tuneups of some sort or had better communication. We did I think 99.5% of the time, but there were instances this happened. Again, I was at fault.

What I wanted, probably, was to feel like I was heard. This may sound juvenile but a simple, "I love you and let's talk this over" would go a long ways or would of for me. I should have done the reverse.

Last edited by LBHmidwest; 02-02-2014 at 12:55 AM.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-18-2014, 02:48 PM
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Re: Dealing with the silent treatment

Silent treatment is the most hurtful thing I have experienced in my marriage.

How are things now slb121 ?
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