What You Can Do When Your Spouse Is Emotionally Distant

by | Jan 24, 2017 | Men

He seems to pay more attention to his dog and his TV than to you. She is always on the phone to her friends but can’t seem to engage in 15 minutes of focused conversation with you.

You’ve told your spouse how much they are hurting you, but nothing seems to change. Your spouse is emotionally distant, and you’re feeling lonely, disappointed and perhaps angry and desperate.

Relationships have a way of deteriorating over time unless both of you invest focused effort on a regular basis. If that has happened to you, doing something about it now may save your marriage—and your sanity. Most human beings respond best to clarity, honesty and respect. By doing something positive now, you can bridge the emotional distance between the two of you.

I’m assuming you and your spouse are people of good will and that you’re basically physically safe. If you’re in true danger, get some help right away.

Here are four keys that will help you emotionally connect with your spouse again:

1. Learn to feed yourself. No human being can be responsible to fill up another all the time. In the best marriages, each spouse meets many of their partner’s needs, but that’s only because they have something in their own hearts to offer. In marriage, two halves do not make a whole. If you’re looking to your spouse to fill you up and meet all your needs, you will most certainly be disappointed, angry—and still empty.

Take responsibility for learning when your soul needs nourishment and for finding and choosing healthy godly food for your inner being. God makes food—both physical and emotional—available, but you and I are responsible for deciding what we need and taking it into our being. That may be time in nature, making some form of art, reading, inspirational media, time with friends and time alone with God. When you’re filled up, you will be more appealing to your spouse and have more to offer the relationship.

2. Enter your spouse’s world. Recently I spoke with a wife trying to reconnect with her husband after time apart neither of them had asked for. She described sitting in the car while her husband walked around used car lots, looking for treasures. I encouraged her to at least sometimes walk around the car lot with him. Ask questions. Demonstrate your interest in what your spouse is interested in.

Adopt the principle “If it’s important to you, it’s important to me.” Most couples will not and cannot both share the same level of interest in everything. But if you want to connect, stretch yourself somewhat. Spend time doing something your spouse wants to do. Don’t keep expecting your spouse to move your direction; instead, you should take steps in their direction. 

3. Take the initiative rather than waiting. If you want to be emotionally closer to your spouse, take the initiative in making that happen. If there are big marriage issues that need to be dealt with, do something about them. Keep in mind that some things you can change and some things you cannot change. And the same goes for your spouse; some things are outside their ability to change. But your relationship will continue to deteriorate unless you take positive action.

That action may be getting some help for yourself first. It may be taking the risk of a planned but difficult conversation. It may be politely and firmly acting differently in a way that will “force” your spouse to make some decisions. If you don’t want tomorrow and next year to be more of the same, do something about it now.

4. Be inviting rather than demanding. Imagine yourself in your spouse’s shoes. Would you want to open up to you? Would you feel safe with you? Would you find yourself appealing? Would you feel loved? Or would you feel excluded, demeaned, criticized and pushed away?

You’ve been together for some period of time (probably years), so you should know quite a lot about your spouse. And you should still be constantly studying your spouse. What’s their love language? How can you draw them closer to you? What can you do to win your spouse’s heart all over again? You did it once; you can do it again.

You don’t have to simply wither on the vine. Will your spouse respond well? Only God knows for sure.

But one thing I can assure you: The emotional distance between you will never decrease unless you take some positive action.

I hope you care enough to risk connecting with your spouse emotionally again. I pray for you the wisdom, courage and patience to win their heart once again. May God bless your union together.

Question: Is your spouse emotionally distant? What can you do to bridge the distance between you? {eoa}

Dr. Carol Peters-Tanksley is both a board-certified OB-GYN physician and an ordained doctor of ministry. As an author and speaker, she loves helping people discover the Fully Alive kind of life Jesus came to bring us. Visit her website at drcarolministries.com.

For the original article, visit drcarolministries.com.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Are You Being Trapped by This Wily Scheme of the Enemy?

Are You Being Trapped by This Wily Scheme of the Enemy?

A predator ensnares his prey with a trap meant to weaken and disarm the life so easily enticed by the bait set before it. Once the predator catches his prey, his goal is to steal, kill and destroy. Do you know this is exactly what the enemy is trying to do to you...

3 Things God Can’t Do

3 Things God Can’t Do

 Most people will be surprised and may even gasp at that statement. You mean there are some things God can't do? Yes, it’s true. He can do anything except for these three things. {eoa} Bill and Annette Wiese founded Soul Choice Ministries in 2000 for the purpose of...

What Is the Difference Between Revelation and Understanding?

What Is the Difference Between Revelation and Understanding?

“I got a word from the Lord, but I don’t understand it.” “I’m feeling called in this direction, but I’m waiting for full understanding before I act on it.” These and statements like them are common during that all-too-familiar waiting time between a word being given...

Prophecy: A Prophetic Insight Into the Roe v. Wade Reversal

Prophecy: A Prophetic Insight Into the Roe v. Wade Reversal

The halls of heaven are rejoicing in the victory for life. The grief our Lord knows over the death of millions of babies in the name of secular humanism, the beast of Revelation 13, has been tempered by our Supreme Court's decision to send the future of abortion back...

Kingdom Economics: When Things Don’t Go as Expected

Kingdom Economics: When Things Don’t Go as Expected

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022. Before the invasion, many—probably most—Western analysts expected the war to last from a few days to a few weeks due to Russia’s vastly superior military might. However, the Ukrainians surprised everyone. Due to the bravery...

Why There is Power in Your Song

Why There is Power in Your Song

Do you have a great voice? If so, then sing! Do you have a horrible voice? If so, then sing! There is power in the song. God gave you your vocal cords, voice and ability to sing. There has never been a culture in which music was not part of society. We see music...

RECENT ARTICLES

How Would an Encounter in Heaven Transform Your Life?

Have you ever wondered what heaven was like? What does a person see and experience when they are in heaven? Is the arrival in immediate when a believer dies? These are great questions and ones that...
Prophet: Learning to Listen With Discernment

Prophet: Learning to Listen With Discernment

Learning to listen with discernment means that you begin to recognize the voice of God so well that other voices sound unfamiliar. In John 10:5a, Jesus told his followers, "Yet they will never follow a stranger." This statement needs to become a reality in your life....

5 Stages of Building a Successful Team

5 Stages of Building a Successful Team

The definition and purpose of leadership are directly tied to organizational models and the five stages of building an organizational model. Let’s talk about those five stages. What we say here may sound somewhat like what you may have heard before about building a...

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: Can I Ask God for Confirmation?

There are many incidents of God giving people a sign throughout the Bible. Although I believe God still does this, I also believe that we must be careful. Asking for a sign can be misleading if other factors are not taken into consideration. In Genesis, we find an...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]