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How to deal with silent treatment


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Old 3rd October 2017, 9:34 AM   #1
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How to deal with silent treatment

So my gf always use silent treatment without telling me what is wrong. She just keep it to herself and her behavior changes(it happens during text only, I dont really see much of this problem in real life)

I've gave her talk, telling her how damaging it is to a healthy relationship, and that she can talk to me about it. The last time I had this talk I even apologize (it was a misunderstanding too, she said I was insensitive, but it was cause I had to deal with some personal issue and didnt have time for her) and she said that I m always like this: do something wrong, then have 'the talk' and apologize, she actually find my message a bit annoying at that point (seriously what else could I have done)

I've been reading posts online such as:
https://www.elephantjournal.com/2014...ent-treatment/

They all suggest to not feed to the silent treatment. Tell your partner you are here to talk when s/he needs to and that silent treatment doesn't solve anything.

My concern is I'm just really tired, I feel like whenever there is a problem I always have to be the one to initial a fix/solution. I want a more balanced relationship where both party take responsibilities and support each other. Last time we "fight" I even start feeling like I have to take care of her and my emotion.

(I m being very lenient because this is her first time dating, and I knew from the start that it will be hard, but I am a bit tired from carrying the relationship myself)

She mention she is insecure, but I'm already super open with her. I feel like it's her responsibility at this point and she cant use this as an excuse.


What do you guys suggest me to do? Can I just stop talking all together when she do the silent treatment and let her initiate a fix. It's taking a toll on me mentally. Would she stop taking things for granted.

Any kind of advises will be really appreciated.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 11:04 AM   #2
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I've been in two relationships with men that used the silent treatment. Personally, when you "stop talking" while in silent treatment mode, it only teaches them that the behavior is acceptable. You're just allowing them to control you and relationship. It enables them to continue perpetuating the pattern.

If you have expressed yourself on several occasions that it is unacceptable and she has not made an attempt to change the way you both communicate, then the only alternative would be to exit the relationship rather than tolerate it. Tolerating will always keep putting you in an uncomfortable position.

Stonewalling/silent treatment is a form of emotional abuse. I have been where you are and it's an ingrained behavioral trait that usually doesn't go away. Her reasoning being that she does it because she is insecure is a cop out. She doesn't get to use that excuse to justify her bad behavior and at the same time break down your sense of self.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 11:46 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply

yeah I agree with u on the emotion abuse, if I didn't learn from my past relationships and experience, I would be in a way worse situation and state of mind.

You said "stop talking" will teach them the behavior is acceptable, is it because "stop talking" is sort of a reaction that it is bothering you and it is exactly what they want, a negative reaction from you?

Also if someone truly love you would they use silent treatment on you? If it's really an ingrained behavior like you said, does it mean the person can still care about u but have to resort to this method? Cause I think she does care about me, so maybe there is a underlying problem I need to resolve. Maybe the only way she knows how to deal with her insecurity (assuming it's not an excuse) is to use silent treatment.

Even if the relationship has to end eventually, I want to have tried everything beside we end it, don't want any regret, as she has a lot of quality which I look for in a girl.

Also I fantasize breaking up but huge part of me is hoping breaking up will make her realize how crucial this problem is and that she will start appreciate all the other stuff I've been doing for her. She has been taking the stuff I'm doing for her for granted. But I really don't want to play any mind games.

Is there any more detailed tips or approach you can give me or how I should change my perspectives?
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Old 3rd October 2017, 12:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
You said "stop talking" will teach them the behavior is acceptable, is it because "stop talking" is sort of a reaction that it is bothering you and it is exactly what they want, a negative reaction from you?
It's showing them that you condone that behavior whether it's begging them to speak or sitting quietly in a corner until they're ready to acknowledge you. The silent treatment is NOT an option. It is one thing to say to each other that you need a few hours or a day to recharge/think through after a disagreement or misunderstanding but it is never right to stonewall.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
Also if someone truly love you would they use silent treatment on you? If it's really an ingrained behavior like you said, does it mean the person can still care about u but have to resort to this method? Cause I think she does care about me, so maybe there is a underlying problem I need to resolve. Maybe the only way she knows how to deal with her insecurity (assuming it's not an excuse) is to use silent treatment.
People that inflict this sort of behavior "love" in a dysfunctional way. You could turn it around -- if she loved you, why wouldn't she try to fix her issues to save her relationship? Eventhough she knows this is hurting you, she is choosing to behave the way she wants to because people that behave this way are driven by control and selfishness, not love.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
Even if the relationship has to end eventually, I want to have tried everything beside we end it, don't want any regret, as she has a lot of quality which I look for in a girl.
Unfortunately, if there is no communication in your relationship, there is no relationship.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
Also I fantasize breaking up but huge part of me is hoping breaking up will make her realize how crucial this problem is and that she will start appreciate all the other stuff I've been doing for her. She has been taking the stuff I'm doing for her for granted. But I really don't want to play any mind games.
Some people do not see the error in the way they behave. That is why they continue to do it. They create excuses to justify their behavior. You can ask her to seek professional help but if it is something she feels she does not need, there is nothing you can do to change someone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
Is there any more detailed tips or approach you can give me or how I should change my perspectives?
Accept who she is and decide if it is how you want to live your life and relationship. You can make suggestions to her to seek help but if she does not want to then you need to exit. If she wants to seek help and work on the relationship, support her. At some point if there is no change, it would be time to make some hard decisions.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 12:43 PM   #5
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Thanks Zahara

I'll see how the next conflict turn out and make the hard decision base on that. Thanks for giving me more perspectives
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Old 3rd October 2017, 12:51 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by waterbottleemo View Post
Thanks Zahara

I'll see how the next conflict turn out and make the hard decision base on that. Thanks for giving me more perspectives
You deserve someone who wants to be transparent, open and communicative with you in a relationship. My past relationships left me feeling anxious all the time. I was always walking on eggshells, sometimes worried about expressing myself incase I would upset my ex and have the silent treatment inflicted upon me. So I kept my mouth shut even when I was upset about something.

If she values you and the relationship, she will show you. Stay strong and believe in what you deserve. If she is insecure, she needs to work on managing those issues so that she can create healthier communication -- not use it as a crutch/excuse to keep on doing what she's doing.

Good luck to you.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 1:25 PM   #7
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I say go play a video game or enjoy the peace and quiet in any way you see fit while it lasts. F passive aggressiveness.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 2:01 PM   #8
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Texting is meaningless. Her failure or even refusal to text back is not the silent treatment especially if she is willing to communicate in other ways.


You admit that the last time this happened you were dealing with a personal issue & she perceived you as being insensitive.


If texting is causing most of your problems, stop trying to communicate via text. Use the voice feature of your phone. You will avoid more misunderstandings that way. If the other person can hear the weariness in your voice when you speak, they will know you are tired. They won't get their feelings hurt over a curt text. More importantly when you end the phone call & say goodbye you will both know communication is over for that day & neither will be wondering if the other is miffed.


I really think your problem is the inferior method you have chosen to try to communicate.
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Old 3rd October 2017, 2:35 PM   #9
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Thanks for your reply,

hmm interesting...

I actually came to the same conclusion before and even told her in person that we should stop texting, and only communicate in person or by phone.


That's why whenever the text conversations get out of hand, I would ask her to come out and talk, which she does so far, but it does take a lot of effort and it doesn't happen until she gave me the treatment.

The problem with this is I'm tired to have to be always the one to take initiative, it feels like I'm the only one that care about the relationship. And most of all I always have to guess what she is thinking, if she is angry at something she just go cold in text (she make it really obvious by the reply, you can easily tell by comparing to her "normal' texting habit. She would also block me from seeing her photos too. She unblock every time after conflicts end, so that make it obvious the conflict was the cause). Yes it's not complete silent, but there is almost no difference as her reply are mostly 'ok', 'yes', 'bye', or no reply.
And I communicated to her that it's taking a toll on me and that if she really doesn't want to talk she could always just say 'I cant deal with this right now, I'll get back to you later' instead of going cold on me suddenly and not replying. And she is not willing to communicate in other ways until after the damage was already done.

And it's true that we did get to the bottom of it in the end, but silent treatment did happens. And we got to the bottom of it because she already gave me the treatment and got my reaction, I asked, I apologize and then I asked her to come out to find out what was wrong.

Last edited by waterbottleemo; 3rd October 2017 at 2:39 PM..
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Old 3rd October 2017, 3:49 PM   #10
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To me.. the silent treatment means you want me to shift my attention to something other than you.

So that would mean finding another woman to have sex with who will actually communicate with me lol
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Old 3rd October 2017, 11:16 PM   #11
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It sounds like you're going through quite a bit of emotional trauma by being the initiator to make things right betweent the two of you. If she's unable to work through her insecurities and come to a place of being able to better communicate her feelings then it's possible that things won't change. The decision to move on from the relationship is ultimately up to you, but it sounds like you have a good idea of what it's like to be in a good and a bad relationship. All the best to you
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