My boyfriend and I have been together for 8 years and we have a 3 year old child. We used to talk about everything, lately he stop saying he is sorry if he did something wrong and sometimes he sulks and does not explain to me what is bothering him. Sometimes I think sex is the only way for us to communicate.How can I get him to start talking his problems with me and stop making me feel used.
First of all, you need to understand that his silence is a form of communication. He is passively communicating a lot of anger through silence and the withholding of information.You are getting the message that he is sticking it to you. He isn’t giving you the words you want, meanwhile you are still giving him sex, which is what is making you feel used, I assume.I also assume you have already asked him to tell you what is wrong. Have you also asked him what his silence is telling you? How does he want you to feel about it? Does he want you to feel shut out and used? Does he think that he is protecting you by not revealing his angry feelings? If this is so, then tell him that you don’t need that kind of protection, which actually has divorce written all over it. Explain to him how his silence will break up the relationship. Tell him that because he isn’t letting you know what you are saying or doing to upset him, you are going to continue doing these things, which means that nothing is going to get better. He is just going to get angrier and angrier, and the relationship will dissolve eventually.If he still refuses to talk, then we have to assume that he has a passive-aggressive personality disorder. Passive-aggressives don’t directly state their angry feelings, instead they release their anger indirectly by withholding what the other person wants. This means that the more he knows that you want him to talk, the more he will clam his lips shut even tighter.The only way to get him to stop this behavior is to remove the pleasure he gets by withholding what you want. You can accomplish this by letting him know that you don’t care if he talks. This is called joining (or reverse psychology) in which you tell him, using whatever words feel right to you, that you don’t want him to talk. You might say, ‘I hope that you don’t want to tell me your troubles today. I’m too tired. ‘Or, you might clam up yourself. If he is clamming up to stick it to you, and you remove his sense of reward, he should start talking again.This isn’t an easy problem to solve. If we are lucky, we aren’t dealing with a personality disorder, which is very hard to modify. The best we can hope for is that he is simply doing what many men do: retreating into themselves when they are upset, trying to independently solve whatever is troubling themIf the latter is true, then it will be easier to teach him new behavioral repertoire. My new book will help you teach him to talk with you. I encourage you to read it. Hang in there.