Emotional Abandonment: When Your Spouse Shuts You Out

Emotional abandonment AdobeStock_99535893 copyAs it pertains to emotional abandonment, when your spouse shuts you out:

“It’s a complaint I hear regularly from people looking for help for their marriages:

  • ‘I feel distant from my spouse.’
  • ‘I try to get my husband to open up, but instead he just shuts down.’
  • ‘My wife just doesn’t seem interested in me anymore. I feel like we’re a million miles apart.’
  • ‘I don’t know if I love him anymore.’

“What we’re talking about here is emotional abandonment. Instead of physically leaving the relationship, your spouse simply checks out emotionally. They stop investing in the marriage, leaving their mate feeling detached and unwanted. To the outside world the situation can still look rosy, but in reality the relationship is dying a slow, quiet death.” (Dr Dave Currie with Glen Hoos)

Emotional abandonment might not even die quite so slowly and quietly, as the spouse who is shut out tries to grapple with what is happening. Sometimes there is a lot of screaming and finger-pointing within the home. This often complicates the situation even further. And yet, what can the abandoned spouse do to turn the relationship back around in the right direction?

Addressing this issue:

Honestly, it’s confusing —even to those who call themselves “experts” in marriage relationships because everyone’s situation is different. What’s especially tragic is that emotional abandonment is something that seems to be happening in epidemic proportions in marriages today, or maybe it’s just that we hear more about this in today’s world… it’s difficult to tell.

But whatever the case, this is something we need to address because of the devastation it is causing on so many levels to individuals within their marriages, families, churches, and society as a whole, as the family unit breaks down and goes in an unhealthy direction.

Insights that may help:

We have found several web site articles that we believe will help in some way. They are ones that give insight into what may be causing this type of emotional shut down. They also give insight on what you may be able to do to turn things around. Please read:



With this next article, written by Dr Dave Currie and Glenn Hoos, posted on The Power to Change web site. It not only gives you solutions to consider but also gives you the opportunity to request to talk to a Marriage Mentor over the issue.

Something you may want to consider:

• EMOTIONAL ABANDONMENT: When Your Spouse Shuts You Out

If you have additional tips you can share to help others in this area of marriage, or you want to share requests for prayer and/or ask others for advice, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

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356 responses to “Emotional Abandonment: When Your Spouse Shuts You Out

  1. I’ve been with my husband for 3-1/2 years, married for 2. The affection and intimacy stopped within 2 months of marriage. I try all the time to show affection to him and all he says is he “doesn’t like being mauled.” When I lost my good job, things got worse. Now, within the past 2 months, he shut me out of his social media life, closed his Facebook account and started a new one and wants no part of involving me there and has lied about it, saying he’s no longer on Facebook. He has always, from day one, had other women that he “sexts” with on messenger. I’ve always known about it, yet he’s always denied it. He just keeps pushing me further and further away, doesn’t talk to me like he used to, only tells me he loves me in response to me saying it to him and says it as if it’s a requirement, not a true feeling. He says he doesn’t want me to leave, but if that’s what I want, he will not stand in my way. Which tells me he really doesn’t want me here anymore. It’s made me feel very unwanted. I don’t feel like a wife. I feel like an unwanted houseguest who has overstayed their welcome.

    1. Wow. This sounds so familiar. So sorry for your pain. I completely understand. I am wondering if your husband has Asperger’s Syndrome. You should do some research about that. It might provide you with some answers. Best of luck! ✌️❤️🙏

  2. I married my husband who already had two grown daughters, and it has been a rollercoaster for 11 years. They don’t approve of me and it has affected our marriage. I am considering divorce.

  3. My husband just doesn’t care if I’m crying about whatever, he’ll just simply fall asleep leaving me in need of comfort. I despise him so much! He says “Awh, you’re losing it!” if I try to make him communicate. I’m just at a loss for what to do.

    1. Same here. Has anything helped you which you can share??I don’t know how to overcome this. My husband doesn’t care for me at all. When we have fights he sleeps in a different room for days and doesn’t talk for days.

    2. I’m sorry. Please do not trust him to make you feel important or loved! He has changed and not for the better. You deserve respect. Once respect is gone, there isn’t much of a relationship left.

    1. I’m so sad for you that your husband is shutting you out. I’ve seen that happen before many times. It shouldn’t be, but that is how some spouses work through their grief and the confusion that accompanies it. The following is a link to an article we have posted on this web site that you may find to be helpful to read and glean through at this time in your marriage: https://marriagemissions.com/spouses-grieve-differently/. Please read through the additional linked articles. I believe they will bring more clarity, and you may even find advice within them that you can use to draw you and your husband back together again. I pray so.

  4. I’ve been married for 3 yrs now with two little one’s. My husband has become more distant ever since we moved to another state. I have caught him looking at porn. Looking at other women. He tells me I’m just insecure and he loves me, but I don’t feel it. I feel very unwanted. I’m praying everyday.My question is it me is he losing interest or is this normal?