20 Signs Of Disrespect In Marriage: When To Draw The Line

By: Ashley Brown

Updated March 10, 2021

"We all deserve to be with someone who treats us kindly. The echoes of a partner’s harsh words can often be heard for years to come. Respect yourself enough to know when it is time to stand up for yourself. That may mean becoming more assertive or it may mean moving on." - Aaron Horn LMFT

It is a fact of life that no marriage is perfect, but where do you draw the line? A successful marriage is built on love, respect, and communication. Do you know what it means to respect your spouse and to be respected in return? There might be some surprising ways that your spouse disrespects you and your marriage that you have not considered. If you are having problems in your marriage, a lack of respect could be the ultimate root cause. Here are some signs of disrespect in marriage that could alert you that changes need to be made in your relationship.

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Signs Of Disrespect In Marriage

There are many signs of disrespect in marriage. When your marriage lacks mutual respect, it is typically doomed unless something changes. Some psychologists say that respect is more important than love when it comes to factors that affect the success of a marriage. Here are some signs that your spouse is not respectful.

#1 They Don't Make Time For You

Whether your spouse is always playing on their phone, always busy, or they spend their time with their friends exclusively without you, if your spouse does not make time for you, they do not respect you. Your spouse should take the time to spend with you in conversation and activity alike.

#2 They Don't Tell You Things

If you frequently find out things about your spouse or their day from other people, it is a sign of disrespect in marriage. When this happens, it means that your spouse doesn't respect you enough to keep you informed on their own.

#3 They Don't Introduce You

It is natural for two people in a relationship to have their friends that do not necessarily interact with your spouse, but when you run into these friends and acquaintances, you should be introducing your spouse to them and including them in the conversation. Failing to introduce your spouse and carrying on a conversation as if they weren't there is very disrespectful.

#4 They Only Take Care Of Themselves

A good spouse that shows respect for their partner will be concerned about the needs of their partner, their family, and their household. Only having care for your own needs without regard to your spouse or the household is extremely disrespectful to your marriage and family.

#5 They Don't Acknowledge Your Accomplishments

When your spouse respects you, they will acknowledge your accomplishments, both big and small. Not acknowledging what you have accomplished in your career, your household, or in some other way, is a sign that your spouse does not respect you.

#6 They Make You Feel Less Than

A spouse that makes you feel less than desired or needed is not respecting you. While no one is perfect, you spend your time trying to make your spouse and family feel loved and cared for. When your spouse is quick to make you feel as though you are less than you should be, it is a serious sign of disrespect.

#7 They Are Derogatory

Derogatory comments either to your face or behind your back are both very disrespectful. This sign of disrespect can often cross the line into emotional abuse and gaslighting. 

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately through the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. You can also go on the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage for more resources.

#8 Nothing Is Out Of Bounds

Does your spouse frequently push the boundaries at your expense? Do they tell other people intimate details of your lives without your permission? These are clear signs of disrespect in marriage.

#9 They Hide Things from You

When you respect someone that you are in a relationship with, you must be open and honest with them. If your spouse is hiding things from you it is a sign of disrespect. Saying that they didn't tell you because they didn't want to worry you is no less disrespectful.

#10 They Treat You As Though You Don't Matter

Does your spouse make you feel as though they wouldn't care one way or the other if you were still around tomorrow? When your spouse treats you as though they could live with or without you, and they would be happier without you, it is a sign of disrespect.

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#11 They Never Take Your Side

Part of being respectful in a marriage is standing by your spouse. If your spouse never takes your side in anything involving friends, family, career, or other situations, it is a serious sign of disrespect. This can be even worse if they openly agree with the person opposing you.

#12 Inappropriate Social Media

The boundaries you and your spouse have about what is and is not acceptable in the world of social media is between the two of you and no one else. When your spouse is having conversations with social media contacts that are flirty or sexual, it is a serious sign of disrespect.

#13 They Comment Negatively On Your Appearance

Does your spouse constantly make negative remarks about your appearance? Do they make fun of your clothing choices, your hair, your weight, or some other aspect of your appearance? Not only is this very disrespectful in a marriage, but it is also plain hurtful.

#14 If They Don't Help You

Everyone struggles from time to time. Your spouse is supposed to be your best friend and the one person that you can count on when things get tough. If you hit one of those struggles and your spouse is not willing to help you, it is a serious sign of disrespect.

#15 They Aren't Polite To Your Friends And Family

While it is true that not everyone will get along with everyone else, there is a certain level of civility and politeness that is expected. If your spouse cannot be bothered to be polite to your friends and family, it is a sign that they do not respect you enough to be respectful to those you care about.

#16 They Are Unwilling To Share

Marriage is supposed to be 50/50, and that means with everything. If your spouse is always unwilling to share their things, this can be a sign of disrespect in marriage. If they have the attitude that what is theirs is theirs and that's that, you should not expect respect.

#17 They Don't Listen To You

When you have something to say to your spouse, they should be willing to listen. If your spouse will never listen to anything you have to say, or if they flat out refuse to let you speak, this is a serious sign of disrespect that you should not tolerate, and it borders on emotional abuse. 

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately through the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

#18 They Give You The Silent Treatment

The silent treatment is a tactic used by many narcissists, and it is a clear sign of disrespect. The silent treatment is designed to make you feel completely cut off, and when done frequently, can be a form of emotional abuse. 

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

#19 They Ignore Your Boundaries

Everyone has boundaries. Even with your spouse, you should have boundaries that you have communicated with each other. If your spouse refuses to respect your boundaries, this means that they also have no respect for you.

#20 Your Partner Refuses To Compromise Or Negotiate

Marriage is all about compromise. You have to be able to negotiate with your spouse to resolve conflicts and problems that come up in your lives and the household. If your spouse has my way or the highway attitude and refuses to discuss things with you or negotiate, this is a sign of disrespect.

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When To Draw The Line

You mustn't allow yourself to be disrespected in any way. If many of the signs mentioned are present in your marriage, it could be an indicator of an abusive relationship. Remember that abuse does not necessarily mean physical violence. You must address these issues as soon as they arise, set healthy boundaries, and expect your spouse to stick to them. Remember that you should never tolerate abuse of any kind. If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

Setting healthy boundaries with your spouse should be a simple matter if you can communicate with each other well and respect each other's thoughts and feelings. If you need help communicating with your partner and need help setting boundaries with your partner, a licensed therapist can help.

When you speak to a licensed counselor, it may help you both get more fulfillment in your relationship, as well as be able to communicate better. Moreover, certain types of therapy can help you learn how to change your behaviors when interacting with each other. This can assist you in beginning to repair your relationship with your spouse.

If you aren't able to find or afford a marriage counselor in your area, there are other options. You can easily take advantage of online counseling options. Online counseling allows you to speak to a licensed therapist from the comfort and privacy of your own home. ReGain is one such online counseling platform that focuses on relationship counseling. The licensed therapists with Regain are experts in relationships and marriage, and they are available at convenient times. Here are reviews of ReGain counselors to read, from people going through similar issues.

Counselor Reviews

"Cori is very insightful, thoughtful and fair. It seems like she get both sides of our couples therapy. I would highly recommend her to anyone, especially couples. She has helped my wife and I improve communication, mutual respect and get through some hard times."

"Dr Diai is insightful, professional and very compassionate. She is capable of turning arguments and conflicts around and bring light to the conversation, always respecting the different points of view. My husband and I are so grateful to be assigned to her to help us through this challenging period in our lives."

Conclusion

There is no reason to put up with disrespect in your marriage. Once you notice the signs, you should get help from a professional counselor to fix the issues that are plaguing you. With the right tools, you can start to repair your marriage, regain respect, and learn how to move forward together.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why is a Toxic Relationship Bad?

Every marriage or relationship is going to have its share of problems, but a toxic relationship is one that needs more repair than your average relationship. Toxic relationships can be abusive, and no matter what you do, the relationship doesn't get any better. If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

There are also times where both parties are toxic for each other. Disrespect in relationships is prevalent in toxic partnerships. Signs of disrespect in a relationship are something you should be mindful of, and leaving the relationship should those signs show up isn't a bad move.

What are signs of disrespect in a marriage?

Some signs of disrespect in relationships are subtle, whereas other signs of disrespect are overt. Signs of disrespect in a marriage can include:

  • Emotional invalidation
  • Stonewalling or using the silent treatment
  • Inequality in terms of give-and-take
  • Controlling behavior

How do you deal with a disrespectful husband?

First, recognize the signs of disrespect that are present in your relationship. What signs of a disrespectful partner do you notice? Maybe, you’re wondering how to deal with a disrespectful husband who doesn't acknowledge you? Or how to deal with a disrespectful husband who shows no appreciation? Have a conversation with your spouse about the specific signs of disrespect you notice in your relationship. The best thing to do is to seek help from a professional to deal with a disrespectful husband to address the signs of disrespect that occur. A licensed counselor or therapist won't be biased, so they'll be able to see signs of disrespect for what they are. 

How does a husband show respect to his wife?

To show respect to your wife, show interest in her and allow her to make her own choices. 

Control is a sign that he doesn’t respect you, whereas allowing you to make your own choices is a sign that he does. In abusive relationships, it’s common for the abusive partner to attempt to isolate their partner or spouse. If someone in a marriage or relationship tries to isolate you, it's a big sign that your partner or husband doesn’t love you or that he doesn’t respect you. If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

Why are people disrespectful?

If you notice signs of disrespect in a partner, friend, family member, or someone else, you might wonder why they don't respect others or act in ways that show a lack of respect. Often, people are disrespectful due to poor self-esteem. When people show signs of disrespect toward others, they might be putting people down in attempts to lift themselves up due to their own lack of confidence. 

How do you build respect?

To build respect, engage in the behaviors affiliated with the essential components of respect in relationships such as communication, listening to your spouse, valuing their thoughts.

What is Considered Disrespectful Behavior?

Disrespectful behavior is anything that makes you feel bad. Some people feel that disrespectful behavior is found among strangers, but the truth is disrespect in a marriage can take place, and with your family unit. Those who don’t respect others fall into the same category, and it can throw up a red flag. 

What Are the Signs of Disrespect?

Any magazine with dating tips will tell you that the signs of disrespect in a romantic partnership include lying and sneaking around. Signs of disrespect in marriage can include spending time with someone who is not your spouse or cheating on your spouse. If you notice disrespect in your relationship at any point in time, you want to make sure that the disrespectful behavior won’t continue and to have a conversation with your spouse.

Why Do Husbands Disrespect Their Wives?

Husbands can disrespect their wives in many ways like ignoring your wishes day to day and not respecting your wishes, and many other things that are considered disrespect in a marriage. If you see the warning signs of a disrespectful husband or the warning signs of a disrespectful relationship dynamic, know that it is not acceptable behavior on his part and then it’s not something you need to take. 

What is Disrespect in a Marriage?

Couples communicate so that they know what is happening in each other's lives; if communications stop, that is also a red flag that disrespect in a marriage is taking place. Additionally, anytime you’re looking for signs he doesn’t respect you, it is likely that there is something going on. 

If your spouse continuously doesn’t call you when running late and holds you up from doing the things you need to do, that may be considered disrespect in a marriage. It is also a red flag that something more significant is going on. One of the major signs that there is disrespect in a marriage is when your husband comes home very late at night when he gets out of work in the early evening instead of being home. The biggest signs your partner is disrespecting you are often the hardest to come to terms with and confront. 

How Do I Stop Disrespectful Behavior?

If you ever feel that your husband is being disrespectful but may not realize that he is doing so, it is important to talk about it. The same is true if you think that you see signs he doesn’t love you. We all know that communication is important in a relationship, as is changed behavior when there is a problem. If the disrespectful behavior is genuinely a mistake, a behavior change will occur. Disrespect should never be attributed to, “this is how I joke,” or “this is just who I am.” Disrespectful behavior is disrespectful behavior, and if someone doesn’t stop, that’s one of the most painful signs that someone really isn’t showing the respect they should in a relationship. 

Resources for recognizing abuse are important. Abuse can impact anyone, and accessible knowledge and assistance for those impacted by abuse are crucial for so many reasons. Any form of abuse, whether that’s physical abuse or verbal abuse, is not okay. The national domestic violence hotline website has a page of abuse warning signs to look out for, including those related to both physical abuse and verbal abuse on the national doemstic violence hotline homepage. The national domestic violence hotline website also has a page designed to help partners who may be exhibiting abuse. The national domestic violence hotline also notes that abuse isn’t limited to physical abuse and verbal abuse. Sexual abuse and financial abuse are also prevalent forms of abuse that must be acknowledged. 

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

How Do You Treat Someone Who Disrespects You?

Dating tips will tell you that when someone disrespects you, that is not someone that you should carry on a relationship. A disrespectful husband does not get to continue to disrespect you, and if you see warning signs that this relationship is unhealthy for you, you have every right to make an ultimatum or get out of the situation. Whether it's a disrespectful husband or a disrespectful boyfriend, there are times when you're not sure if you should stay or go. You will know what the best option for you is. Listen to your gut, and don’t ignore a bad sign if it shows up.

Note that there is a difference between toxic love, disrespect, and domestic violence. If you are in a domestic violence situation, it is essential that you prioritize your safety and reach to National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

If you are not currently in a domestic violence situation, but are healing from one, you can find resources on the national domestic violence hotline to find a domestic violence expert and domestic violence counselor who’s dedicated to working with survivors of domestic violence.  If you have a counselor who is constantly facing and dealing with domestic violence, they are the ones that are most likely to understand what you were going through in depth. To find a domestic violence counselor in your area, you can find resources on the national domestic violence hotline website or search the web for, “domestic violence counselors near me,” ask for a referral, contact your insurance company.

How Do You Know When Someone Doesn’t Respect You?

Someone who doesn’t respect you will lie to you, cheat on you, and treat you poorly. Basically, any unkind behavior is a sign of a lack of respect. If you have a disrespectful husband or if your husband is showing signs of being a disrespectful husband, you may notice that you were late to some or many of the signs in the article above. Once you notice the signs of a disrespectful husband, bring it up to him using “I” statements. If he’s receptive, that’s a sign that you can work it out alone or with the help of a counselor or therapist.

What are the signs that your husband doesn't love you anymore?

If you look at your husband's behavior and notice the following, something could be wrong:

  • Your husband disrespects you
  • He won't say “I love you” or purposefully withholds affection in other ways
  • He criticizes you 

It’s essential to have a conversation about your husband’s behavior and how he really feels. No one should be indifferent to or critical of their spouse.

If you don’t feel safe talking to your husband and fear that he may become aggressive, that is a sign that this relationship has moved past the point of toxicity. Call 1-800-799-7233 to reach the national domestic violence hotline, or go to their website to use the webchat option, learn more about the national domestic violence hotline resources, and to gain knowledge on what is considered abuse in a romantic partnership. 

How do you know that your husband doesn't value you anymore?

Your feelings matter. If you’re looking for a sign that he doesn’t value you, it’s likely that he’s displaying a specific action or behavior that makes you feel this way. Some warning signs your partner doesn’t value you anymore include not respecting your boundaries and doesn't consider your opinion. If your husband doesn’t listen to what you have to say, it’s a major red flag. One of the other painful signs your husband doesn’t value you is that he makes you feel disrespected when he doesn’t stay true to his word.

How do you know your husband doesn't respect you?

Some of the warning signs that you’re dealing with a husband who doesn't respect you are that your husband fails to make time for you or stonewalls you.

Any relationship expert will say that respect and communication are two of the most important things in a relationship. If your husband doesn’t respect you, the relationship won’t be healthy. You should have respect for your partner, and they should have respect for you. If you see the signs that your husband doesn’t respect you, it’s time to evaluate if it’s time to leave the relationship. It might take a great deal of work to repair a disrespectful marriage, but it is possible. That said, if abuse is present, this is no longer a matter of dealing with a disrespectful marriage. It has moved beyond disrespect, and your safety is the priority.  

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

What are signs of disrespect in a marriage?

Any of the signs of a disrespectful husband listed in the article above are signs of disrespect in a marriage. If your husband belittles you or puts you down in any other way, those are warning signs that you have a disrespectful husband or that there’s not much respect in your relationship. These are all red flags, and some of the warning signs of a disrespectful husband even border on potential abuse, depending on what warning signs you’re noticing. Some major warning signs of emotional abuse to be aware of are manipulation, gaslighting, stonewalling, putting down your appearance, and name-calling. 

If you have been experiencing domestic violence, reach out for help immediately. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more resources visit the National Domestic Violence Hotline webpage.

If you decide to break up after searching for signs your husband doesn’t love you anymore, or after noticing signs of disrespect in a marriage, it’s likely that you’re going through a hard time. Even after seeing signs that your husband doesn’t love you anymore or signs that he doesn’t respect you anymore, you might still feel as though there’s a soulmate missing. It might take some time to find the right person, so focus on yourself first. Especially after a situation where you were left feeling like your husband doesn’t love you anymore or doesn’t respect you anymore, you deserve someone who does. 

How do you deal with a disrespectful man?

Love and mutual respect are important in a relationship. In a relationship respect must be present. When it comes to a disrespectful husband, disrespectful man, disrespectful woman, or signs of a disrespectful significant other of any gender, if they won’t change, leaving might be the answer. A disrespectful spouse can disturb one’s identity, and a disrespectful spouse can disturb the healthy dynamics that’d be present in a healthy relationship. A disrespectful man, in particular, may assume that all men are to disrespect women the way that he does. A disrespectful husband or disrespectful man may believe that it's necessary to disrespect women. Some signs of disrespect may also be paired with or attributed to a narcissistic spouse. 

What are signs of disrespect in a relationship?

It’s important to be aware of the signs of disrespect in a relationship. Many of the signs of disrespect in a relationship are the same as the signs of disrespect in a marriage, which you can find under the question, “What are signs of disrespect in a marriage?” Some signs are a lack of communication, name calling, and controlling behavior. 

How do you get a man to respect you?

When men disrespect women, it’s the man’s problem. The same is true for disrespectful women. If someone disrespects another person, whether men disrespect women, women disrespect men, or someone who’s nonbinary disrespects their partner, it says more about them than it does about the one they’re disrespecting. If someone disrespects you, it is not your fault - by any means. This means that while you can start a conversation and attempt to work through things, if someone is disrespectful or controlling in nature and doesn’t want to change, you can’t force that to happen. It’s common for disrespectful people to say that if you changed, things would be different, but that isn’t true. 

Why is respect important in a marriage?

If your husband or wife doesn't respect you, or if they lose respect, they are likely to show it through actions and words, and that is what impacts a marriage. If you look at the signs of disrespect covered on this webpage, you will see how much the level of respect in a marriage matters. 

Say that you're looking for "wife respect why doesn't my wife respect me," "earn wife's respect wife love and respect," or "why doesn't my wife respect me marriage marriage problems" online because your wife is constantly showing the signs. Whether your wife doesn't respect you and you want to earn your wife's respect or vice versa, remember that it is a two-way street. Part of earning your husband or wife's respect is that they must be willing to give it. Remember, if your husband or wife doesn't respect you and they're dedicated to continue the disrespect for any reason, whether it's their own low self-esteem or something else, there is nothing you can do to make your husband or wife respect you more. 

How do you respect a disrespectful husband?

If your husband or wife doesn't respect you, know that you can set boundaries about what you will and won't take while making an effort to show signs of respect. You can make an effort to respect your husband in a kind but firm manner. If your husband wants to change, you can work together in therapy to build new patterns to establish respect and respectful behavior toward one another. 


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