Insensitivity is a terrible trait in a person because of the negative effect on an interpersonal relationship. This effect heightens in romantic relationships, where spouses depend on each other for emotional support.
We can try our best to avoid men like this, but life being what it is, sometimes they end up as our husband or boyfriend.
With the dating pool getting worse with each passing day, we have to find a way to deal with our relationships' imperfections. For those with insensitive husbands, I have compiled some effective ways to deal with one and hopefully get you back to enjoying your marriage.
- 0.1 11 Ways To Deal With An Insensitive Husband
- 0.1.1 1. Investigate the cause of his behavior
- 0.1.2 2. Have a heart-to-heart conversation about it
- 0.1.3 3. Embrace clear communication
- 0.1.4 4. Set clear boundaries
- 0.1.5 5. Call out insensitive behavior immediately
- 0.1.6 6. Reinforce positive behavior
- 0.1.7 7. Self-evaluate your concerns
- 0.1.8 8. Kill him with kindness
- 0.1.9 9. Learn to steel yourself emotionally
- 0.1.10 10. Accept he may never change
- 0.1.11 11. Consider couples' therapy
- 0.2 FAQs
- 0.3 The Bottomline
11 Ways To Deal With An Insensitive Husband
1. Investigate the cause of his behavior
Everyone was born a blank slate before our nurturing shaped our personality. While you should be rightly angry at insensitivity from your husband, addressing the problem should start with understanding this side of him. Is he insensitive because he is selfish and doesn't care about others’ feelings? Or does he use it as a coping mechanism?
Focusing on his behavioral patterns improves your ability to understand the psychology driving his actions and gives you an effective foundation for correcting measures. For this, you will need patience, calmness, and an open mind to get to the root of the matter.
2. Have a heart-to-heart conversation about it
One truth many people seem to avoid about marriages and other relationships worth their salt is that it requires a lot of honest talking and sharing. It requires a degree of vulnerability that most people find uncomfortable. Yet, it is necessary for you to understand your partner and for them to understand you.
Once you have a sense of the force driving the behavior, have a conversation about it. Don't be harsh or aggressive, as it will likely force him into a defensive stance. Instead, be calm and open-minded. Remember that you have a problem with his actions, not him as a person. It will give you both the chance to craft a path forward.
3. Embrace clear communication
One common complaint after a heart-to-heart is that it had zero effect or unsatisfactory responses. Many blame a lack of support in their partner or the ineffectiveness of the method.
However, it can be down to unclear communication. It is important to remember that honesty and vulnerability do not equal clear communication. The former is about what you say, and the latter is about how you say it.
Not everyone is naturally great at this. So, you can try writing everything you want to say down and edit out the confusing or irrelevant parts. If you have a counselor or therapist, you can also run it by them and let their expertise smooth out your thoughts.
4. Set clear boundaries
One example of the nurture point I made earlier is what we consider an acceptable joke. Some people have no limits, while others have a few exceptions. If you and your husband exist on either side of this divide, chances are some of his jests will come across as insensitive.
To solve this and other differences in acceptable behavior, you should set clear boundaries. Let your husband know what actions you find unacceptable. Encouraging him to do the same is also a good idea. By doing this, you give yourself a framework for approaching and behaving on any issue that concerns either of you.
5. Call out insensitive behavior immediately
Once you have established the boundaries of acceptable behavior in your relationship, you need to be ruthless in enforcing it. Being your husband, you might be reluctant to do this because you want to avoid conflict. However, I can assure you that while your intentions are good, this is how you reinforce insensitivity.
One, there is a necessary period of adjustment where his instinctive thought tends toward insensitive behavior. Secondly, you want him to take you seriously. Both require you continually call him out to reorient his actions in this regard.
Be gentle but firm. Respectful, but assertive. You should end the pattern of callousness if you do these enough times.
6. Reinforce positive behavior
It is not enough that you call out this negative behavior in your husband every time. You can also improve the quality of his actions by encouraging him when he acts the right way. This is called positive reinforcement, and numerous studies have shown it is highly effective in solidifying acceptable behavior.
When he shows sensitivity to problems that matter to you, such as your education, work, or hobby, let him know you appreciate it. You can even buy a small gift to say thank you.
It not only sends the message that the issue carries significant weight with you but that you also recognize he is trying. Feel free to use this to inculcate other qualities you want to see in your partner.
7. Self-evaluate your concerns
Just as insensitivity is a thing, so is oversensitivity. Men have their idiosyncrasies, and it can come across as insensitive to anyone who does not understand it. You do not want to create other marriage problems because of your oversensitivity. One great way to avoid this is to self-evaluate every incident and pick your battles.
If you choose to call out every display of thoughtlessness, you and your husband might continuously find yourselves in conflict. Let the small, inconsequential stuff go. If you are incensed, you can use breathing techniques or take a walk to recenter yourself. It will serve you in the long run than anything else.
8. Kill him with kindness
Men, and people in general, sometimes exhibit insensitive behavior to rile others up. You may have noticed it, marriages like this often have many arguments and grandstanding. If you have seen this in your spouse, engaging is not going to solve the issue. Instead, kill him with kindness.
Not only will it make it easier for you to cope with the emotional turbulence, but it will deflate his incentive for the action in the first place. Pretend he never said that hurtful comment. Act like the behavior does not matter. Give him the opposite reaction he expects, and you might get him to end his bad conduct.
9. Learn to steel yourself emotionally
One of the things married men and women quickly learn is that you can only control yourself. Your insensitive husband may or may not keep exhibiting the negative behavior, but how that affects you is within your control.
It will take some time. You may have terrible days, but toughening up emotionally will reduce the number of times and the degree to which his actions hurt you.
And if his insensitivity no longer carries as much emotional weight, then it no longer matters. Your complaints about him in this regard will end, and both of you will finally be on your way to building a lasting marriage.
10. Accept he may never change
As bad as it might be, one effective way to deal with insensitive spouses is to accept that they might never change because it is hard to. This acceptance and understanding can be freeing and allow you to focus on other positive attributes he has. After all, he became your partner because you saw some qualities you respect and admire in him.
So, focus on those. Let them be the guiding light that keeps you in your marriage journey. Who knows, maybe your spouse will grow up someday and change on his own.
11. Consider couples' therapy
Finally, when you have tried everything else, and nothing appears to be working, try couples' therapy. Both of you will get the advantage of talking to an expert who knows your marriage's dynamics. This can be very helpful in crafting the right behavioral exercises and techniques to effect change.
Additionally, there is something about the decision to seek therapy that jolts men into seriousness. Suggesting professional counseling can pass the message that your marriage is in trouble and force him to self-examine and fix everything he has taken for granted.
By understanding the root of his behavior, setting boundaries, killing him with kindness, learning, and applying positive reinforcement. None of this guarantees change on his part.
However, they will ultimately help you cope better with his insensitivity, allow you to accept him for who he is, and appreciate the side of him you love.
If it is a new development, give it time. It could result from the state of things at work, and he needs a moment to consider his choices. In the meantime, do not reciprocate. Always take advantage of any chance to show your love and care about him. If he doesn't change, encourage him to visit a therapist or go on marriage counseling.
An unsupportive husband is one who provides little to zero contribution to your emotional, physical, and mental health. Husbands like this exhibit this in various forms, from not caring about your work to offering zero help with the kids.
Although not every unsupportive mate is a textbook narcissist, they all share varying degrees of selfishness to the point that everything else comes down to what he wants.
There are many such as more complaints and frustrations than joy and fun, lack of sex, you have frequent divorce fantasies, and loneliness. Others are actively spending little time together, no more romantic gestures, their presence breeds conflict, and you daydream about other people's marriages.
If your marriage has one or more of these, chances are you are in an unhappy marriage.
One of the strongest signs your husband is emotionally detached is his comfortability with distance and silent treatment. Other symptoms include an overly critical nature, unapologetic selfishness, a transactional mindset, unsupportive behavior, and repetitive lying.
When you see these signs become patterns, chances are your husband is emotionally detached from you.
Insensitivity is a horrible trait for anyone to have, and coming from husbands, it can be unbearable. However, it is not unfixable. By applying the advice from our list, you have a chance of turning your husband into a sensitive bear.
Feel free to sound off any thoughts you have in the comments, and remember to share this article with your friends.
As hopeless romantic I struggled tremendously in my love life. After many years of searching, trial & error, and countless failed relationships, I finally found my Mr. Right. It wasn't an easy road, but one that has taught me an incredible amount about the workings of relationships between men and women, and this is what I hope to share through my writing on this blog.