When One Partner Stays Mad


Sometimes our partner stays mad at us, leaving us disconnected and upset like the couple pictured.

It is not uncommon for two people in a relationship to argue or disagree with each other. In fact it should be expected. We do not live in our partner’s head and we can’t always know when we step on a sensitive area.

These sensitive areas can release a big reaction and that can create a problem between two people who care about each other.

As a counselor I try and help people understand what occurred during these instances. First we look at what happened but I always try and identify what the feelings were that prompted the reaction.

When Hurt Pushes Us to Disconnect From Partners

Feeling hurt and angry can leave us feeling disconnected from our partner, like the upset couple pictured.

Usually if we can identify the feelings then there is a deeper understanding of what happened and how to repair it.

But sometimes there is such a strong response that the person who got hurt can’t come back. They are in such pain or difficulty that all they see is red towards their mate and they end up putting themselves behind a wall to feel safe.

This is a sure fire way of not feeling anymore pain. Put up a wall and nothing gets in. But it also keeps out your mate and I bet your mate wishes they could enter and make things right with you again.

Disconnecting Impedes Understanding and Repair

Disconnecting can leave us sitting alone in our hurt feelings instead of working through them as a couple.

I am not saying just lay down your defenses, I am saying that when you isolate yourself behind your wall you stay in your misery. There is no way for your partner to get some understanding of what happened to you to begin to make repairs.

There is just a cut off and this is where real damage can occur. You probably know couples that leave the home and just don’t come back. Maybe this is something that happened in your relationship.

This is a very hard way to co-exist with another person because it takes so long for the hurt feelings to ease that it might be days or even weeks before there is even another conversation to begin to get back together again.

Changing Partners Doesn’t Always Solve Things

Leaving a partner doesn't help us outgrow our part of what went wrong in a relationship, leaving history to repeat itself.

I know if you are the one who gets so hurt that you can’t even look at your mate, then you have been really, really wounded. Sometimes this happens. Let me talk to you about getting this resolved.

First let me ask you if you are willing to start over in a new relationship. Maybe you think about someone who won’t hurt you and maybe you think that person is out there and all you have to do is find them.

This kind of thinking is pretty common too. But let me be clear about this next point. Until you learn how to let your partner know what happened to you when you get hurt, you will run to another and another relationship looking for one where you will never get hurt.

Developing Relationship Skills Helps Us Stick with and Nurture Relationships

Learning how to understand ourselves, communicate, and reach out to our partners can facilitate long, happy relationships like that of the couple pictured.

But being in a relationship is about learning about yourself, how you respond to things that hurt your feelings, and learning how to explain this to your mate so they can understand you better and not hurt you.

Couples are often in training. Each of us has to let the other know what we are about so we can have a peaceful life. This takes learning new skills. But once those new skills are in place, then you have something you have always been looking for, a relationship with stability, love and understanding.


Want to Help Your Partner Understand How You Feel?

Read a Book About Relationships

'Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship.' A book by Linda Nusbaum.

Learn how to bounce back from misunderstandings by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It might just help you make your relationship even better. Give it a read.

Get Couples Counseling

Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.

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