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What do you do when your DH wont talk to you?

(18 Posts)
SageMist Fri 30-Sep-11 12:39:58

DH and I are going through a rough patch at the moment, very long story as to why, which I won't go into.

Basically whenever he gets upset, he won't actually tell me what's wrong. He's always been like this, and normally I'd put in quite a lot of effort to tease out of him what the issue is. We then talk (and argue) and then eventually sort things out.

The trouble is he is now wandering around with a face like a wet weekend, putting his head in his hands occaisionally and sighing periodically. When I ask him what the matter is, I get 'I don't feel good', and thats it.

But I am really, really getting fed up of this behaviour, it feels like I have to make all the effort and he doesn't. I want to hit him over the head with a cushion. I don't want to go through around of 20 questions. I don't want to cuddle him and say it'll be alright, just tell me what's wrong. Because it isn't all right.

What shall I do?

CailinDana Fri 30-Sep-11 12:41:32

Tell him he is hurting you and making you anxious with this behaviour and that he can either behave normally (ie stop sighing etc) or he can tell you what's wrong. Behaving like a small child is not acceptable and it needs to stop.

Ephiny Fri 30-Sep-11 12:43:32

I would probably say 'you know where I am if you want to talk', and leave him to get on with it.

Depends how serious you think the problem is, I guess. If you think it might be something awful, or he seems depressed or something, obviously it might be worth making more effort. If it's just sulking over trivial things, leave him to it, you shouldn't have to baby him and coax it out of him.

7to25 Fri 30-Sep-11 12:43:45

Totally ignore him and get on with your own life.
Like a huffing toddler, he has learned that this strange behaviour gets him a lot of attention.

Beamur Fri 30-Sep-11 12:45:35

That sounds like hard work. My DP can be a touch like this sometimes, so instead of badgering him I take one of 2 options:
1) If I'm in a tolerant frame of mind, I will say something like whats up? talk to me when you feel like it. And leave it at that.
2) If I'm not. This type of stand off always happens at night and I'm easily irritated if my sleep is disturbed these days (by grown ups, not kids!) Then I give him 5 minutes to cough up and talk or I'm going to sleep.
I think picking the right time to talk also helps - I don't like the big chat at bedtime, but I'd rather talk over a meal or go out for walk.
Is there a time/place when your DP might be a bit more receptive to opening up?

JarethTheGoblinKing Fri 30-Sep-11 12:47:48

Exactly what CailinDana said. Tell him. DP does this sometimes and it's bloody infuriating (especially the sighing for some reason). Sometimes it makes me feel like I've done something wrong, but it's always about something else (usually work) but he'll sulk around for weeks otherwise.

SageMist Fri 30-Sep-11 12:49:06

He's gone out for a walk now, he works from home, and should be working.

I have to go out soon, so can't do anything about this until after tea. By which time I'll be shattered, he'll have been stewing all afternoon. That means another argument this evening. Ho hum.

mumblechum1 Fri 30-Sep-11 12:49:49

Let him know you're ready to talk whenever he is but leave him to it.

Sometimes moody people just need to be left to sort their heads out by themselves, ds is like this sometimes and I've learned to give him space, but he knows where I am when he's ready to get it off his chest.

SageMist Fri 30-Sep-11 12:53:18

He doesn't want space, he wants me to winkle this out of him. That's why he's gone out, not to think things through, but to wind me up just a little bit more.

Grrrrrrr.

JarethTheGoblinKing Fri 30-Sep-11 12:55:19

Oh if he's doing it to wind you up then ignore the tosser.

Ephiny Fri 30-Sep-11 12:55:39

Don't play the game then. Get on with something of your own and put it out of your mind. He's an adult, he's responsible for himself - if he needs your help and support he should be capable of asking for it.

That might sound harsh, but it sounds like you've been very concerned and caring already, and he likes to keep you dancing around him like that. Annoying behaviour and the only way to stop it is to not play along.

becstarsky Fri 30-Sep-11 13:01:18

So I might be totally wrong here, just food for thought really...

You mentioned that he 'should be working' and that he's deliberately winding you up by doing this, wanting you to 'winkle it out of him'. It sounds a bit as if you've developed roles in your relationship where he is the 'child' and you are the 'adult' and his emotions, him doing his work, is all your responsibility to think about. And he can't create those roles alone, you have to play your role for him to play his, and it is as much your creation as his. I suggest saying 'I'm really sorry you feel bad, I can tell that you do. If you need me to do anything practical to help you, I'm there and I love you.' Then go and do your work, or go out to do something you want to do. Take responsibility for yourself but not for him. Don't ask him how he is again. Don't play the game (I don't mean 'don't play his games' - if I'm right then it's your game too, not just his). Perhaps I've misunderstood your situation, always hard to tell from an OP. Best of luck anyway.

MeMySonAndI Fri 30-Sep-11 13:01:54

Leave him alone, men need to go into their caves when they feel bad and eventually come out when they are ready to talk.

Tell him that you don't fully understand what is going on, but that you are happy to talk if he wishes to. And leave it at that, if you put pressure he will go deeper into the "cave".

Get on with your life and ignore him. Unless you think there is something you need to apologise for, then you have to do the talking. However, if you have done that already and he is still playing the victim, just tell him that you regret what you did and that you have appologised and there's nothing else you can do now. Then ignore.

WhereYouLeftIt Fri 30-Sep-11 13:02:38

Well surely if he's going to be childish, do what works with children? Do not reward attention-seeking with attention. When you get back from work, a concerned "You said you didn't feel good earlier - how are you feeling now? Was it a headache or a stomach-ache?" is quite enough. He can choose to engage, or not. If not, ignore any sighing, maybe even claim a headache and a desire to 'just go and rest for a bit'.

And yes, I'd go as far as a very early night with a book to let him stew realise he needs a different technique.

TheyCallMeMimi Fri 30-Sep-11 20:18:44

Mine's like that too from time to time. Yes I too want to shake him or whatever but I've learned that having patience works in the end. Sometimes the end is a long time coming ... so you may need a lot of patience. Come on here and rant if it helps, while you are waiting for him to get off his high horse.

Beamur Fri 30-Sep-11 20:51:18

My DP used to do a bit of door and cupboard slamming too - but I didn't notice - so he was waiting for some kind of reaction, got none, sheepishly admitted said banging - which I hadn't heard - by this time, his pet was over, so we had a bit of a laugh about it, I told him it was childish and wouldn't be getting a reaction out of me and funnily enough he hasn't done it since.

kunahero Fri 30-Sep-11 20:56:41

I used to be just like him!! WHenever dw would ask 'whats up' I would reply 'nothing' then stomp about with a face like a smacked arse! Eventually dw sat me down and explained how pathetic my behaviour was and how it was affecting her. SHe also told me that we would not be carrying on like this and unless i changed I would be out on my arse. So I changed. We now talk, talk talk and I find it so much easier to open up and stop acting like a petulant toddler.
Talk to him, write to him, email, txt him but explain how this makes you feel and unless he has a serious attitude transplant then he can walk.
Good luck, be strong and stick to your side, dont give in. You can do it.

DontGoCurly Sat 01-Oct-11 14:39:33

Do nothing. It's attention seeking behaviour. Don't play his game. Pathetic carry on in a grown adult.

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