What To Do If Your Husband Seems Emotionally Disconnected
By: Hailey Davis
Updated June 24, 2021
Medically Reviewed By: Audrey Kelly, LMFT
Have you gone out with your husband and realized there was barely a conversation? Driving in silence, eating in silence. Or perhaps, feeling like you did all the talking and he just nodded along? Your husband could be feeling emotionally disconnected. It can be stressful, and you might get frustrated, but you must try to understand where he is coming from so you can both get back on track. It is also important to remain calm, supportive and not to get angry at each other. Let's discuss what else you should do if your husband seems emotionally disconnected.
What to Do If Your Husband Seems Emotionally Disconnected
When your husband seems disconnected and uninterested, you may feel at a loss for what you should do. If his behavior has been going on for quite some time, don't give up or feel discouraged. There are solutions for this problem, and you can figure it out together. You must put in the effort to support them through whatever they may be going through.
It can also feel very personal when your husband is acting this way. When you try to connect with him, he shows no interest. When you ask him questions about his day, he gives short responses. This can be hurtful and can start to take a toll on anyone. To help the situation, try to set aside how personal his disconnection feels and try out the methods below.
- Try to Figure Out the Root Cause of The Disconnection
Start by trying to figure out the root cause of the issue. Has he been working longer hours? Is he stressed out over money, work, or having too much to deal with when he gets home? Has he experienced a loss recently, or is it close to an anniversary of someone's death that he was close with? Does he struggle with mental health problems? No matter what the situation, remember that people react to stress, sadness, and frustration in many ways. Something deeper could be going on that your husband is dealing with. Therefore you should try to be as supportive as possible when your husband seems emotionally disconnected. Be sure to tell him you care for him and that you are here for him. Creating an open door for conversation and comfort may be exactly what he needs from you.
It is important to try to figure out what it is and, if possible, try to remove some stress off his plate. If he spends long hours at a demanding job, he may be less than thrilled to come home to do chores or cook. His behavior could be that he is having difficulty juggling his work responsibilities and daily tasks. Please pay attention to when he acts emotionally disconnected. Is it on certain days, or is it every day over a long period? The sooner you know the root cause, the faster you two can discuss the issue and get back on track. Whether that is counseling or talking it out together, you two can come up with a plan.
Once you find out the root cause of making him feel this way, do not tell him that it is silly. Be 100 percent supportive of what he is going through, even if it is difficult to understand. Please do your best to listen to him when he is talking, and don't speak until he is done. Listen to what your husband is saying and try to understand his feelings.
- Kindly and Respectfully Ask Your Husband About Their Behavior
If you cannot find out what is causing your husband's emotional disconnect, you may have to ask him about it. Confrontation can be less than enjoyable but practicing great communication skills is important. When it comes time to sit your husband down and ask him about his behavior, try to be sensitive and soft-spoken. Avoid being abrasive or angry with him for his behavior. You may have to be patient as some men have difficulty in sharing their feelings. So, allow him to take his time when explaining his feelings, and don't be angry if he does not express them the first time you ask.
If your husband starts to stonewall or shut down and become silent, you may have to reassure him that his feelings are valid and not shameful. Make it known that what he says will stay between the two of you. This is not something to share with your friends or your mother. Promise that it will stay between you and your husband. If he thinks you will run off and tell his problems to people outside of your marriage, he may be hesitant to trust and confide in you. After all, who wants their deepest feelings and emotions to be shared with everyone? Be aware and sensitive towards this fear that he may have.
- Be There for Him and Show Him Support for The Reason
Once your husband does share his feelings and why he has been emotionally disconnected, do not shrug it off or tell him it is silly or dumb to feel that way. If that is the way he feels over a certain situation, he can feel. However, he wants. Always show him support in what he is going through and thank him for opening up to you. When he realizes it is safe to share things with you and not be judged, he will likely open up to you more.
No matter what your husband may be going through, always be there for him and let him know he can come to you to talk. Be a safe place with no criticism or judgment. Do everything, so he is confident that no one else is going to know about his problems. If he finds a way to work through it, support him. Even if that means he would like some alone time now and then. There is nothing wrong with your husband wanting some time to himself. If it works and he is getting happier and becoming more involved like he used to, then support him in what he does.
- Stay Patient With Him While He Is Trying
While he tries to deal with his situation and tries to become emotionally present, remain patient. This is not always easy for many men, especially depending on the situation that they are going through. If your husband is experiencing a loss with family or friends, it could take a while for your husband to stop being emotionally disconnected and back to normal. Grieving is different for everyone and usually has many steps to go through, not always in a clear order. If it is a job conflict, then keep in mind the solution may not be in his hands. The issue could take a long time to fix, or it could take a short amount of time, depending on circumstances, if they could make a change.
Do not try to rush your husband or make him think he is not improving fast enough. Everyone moves at their own pace, physically and emotionally. Keep supporting him through every step he makes, whether it is forwards or backward. Of course, be proud of him when he moves forward, but if he takes a step in the wrong direction, make sure to try to have him open up and talk about what happened.
- Take Notice and Recognize Them for His Efforts
When you see a change, let him know you have noticed an improvement and praise him for his hard work. He might still have a lot of progress to make to get back into his usual old self, but always let him know you can tell the difference. Be sure to focus on the positives rather than the negatives if he hasn't changed. This will make him stress over something that was not the root cause. It would just be adding more problems on top of the main issue. You may want to help, but he needs to do it himself with your full support, not your judgment. You can also ask him if there is anything you can do that will help him further.
- If He Has Not Made Any Changes, Talk to Him About It Again
If you both have talked about overcoming this issue and becoming emotionally connected again, but he has not attempted to make a change, talk to him again. Keep creating a comfortable environment for him to talk about it with you. If you stop talking about the issues he is facing, he may not attempt to change. Neither of you will be happy if he no longer makes any effort to change, so be sure to stay aware of his behavior. It is important to communicate with each other so that you both can work on this.
Try and find out why he has not made any changes. Is there an obstacle in his way of making progress? Is he still in the same situation that is causing him to be emotionally disconnected? Please do your best to find out the problem, as this can help you be more understanding and supportive of him. Also, be aware that counseling may be necessary to help him. Signs of significant withdrawal and disinterest can point to a mental health condition, in which he will benefit from seeing a counselor. As your husband's spouse, try to remain aware of his symptoms.
- Consider Marriage Counseling If He Continues to Make No Changes
If you have not noticed that your husband has made any progress or has even gotten worse, marital counseling may be in your best interest. After talking to your husband multiple times and giving him chances to speak his mind and share feelings, he should have made some progress. This may seem intimidating but seeking help from a licensed counselor is well worth it. A counselor will help you and your husband get to the bottom of why he is emotionally disconnected. They will also help you and him communicate better to improve your connection as a married couple. Marital counseling could also help him learn how to express emotions better and how to take proper action. This will also give your husband a chance to speak to a professional about his feelings to see if he would benefit from individual counseling.
Marriage counseling will also help you learn how to help your husband in a way you may not have known about. You both can benefit from marriage counseling in so many ways. You two need to get through this and get back to what you had before this problem came into the picture. Marriage counseling not only will it help you in your current situation, but it will also help you both in future situations. You both will be better equipped to handle anything that comes your way. Dealing with problems that can affect you emotionally in your marriage will come up more than once, so it is important to understand how to deal with them.
Helping Your Husband When He Is Emotionally Disconnected
Considering you are reading this article to help your husband better your marriage, you are already on the right track. Noticing that your husband is emotionally disconnected is the very first step to take to come up with a solution. When you get to the bottom of the issue, keep your husband's mental health in mind. As you may know, mental health is just as important as your physical health. So, if your husband is experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms from everything, don't hesitate to suggest that he goes to counseling. Stay hopeful because there are many ways you and your husband can get back to a deep connection once again.
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