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My partner gets angry and does not talk to me: why it happens and what to do

My partner gets angry and does not talk to me: why it happens and what to do

June 12, 2024

A couple relationship that is maintained over time will experience, sooner or later, some type of conflict. Although almost no one is pleasant, in reality their existence is healthy, since it allows expressing emotions and thoughts and negotiating action guidelines and intermediate points.

However, it is necessary to know how to manage them, and this may not be so easy. This is influenced by the previous couple's experiences, the different styles when it comes to managing problems or even different personality traits.

Some people for example find that After an argument with your partner, she gets angry and does not talk to you . Why does this happen? How to react? Throughout this article we will try to give some answers to these questions.


  • Related article: "12 tips to better manage couple's discussions"

The law of ice: he gets angry and does not talk to me

In all relationships, and especially in relationships, it is relatively common for some reason Conflicts, small quarrels and disputes appear, in which both partners end up getting angry .

In some people, a discussion means that one party stops talking to the other and ignores it. When employed voluntarily, this way of proceeding receives the popular name of the law of ice .

It is a pattern of action in which the person who gets angry stops talking with the other during a time, during which it is possible that not only there is a silence at the behavioral level but the subject who practices it is mentally and emotionally isolated . The absence of communication can be complete , or limited to short, dry and even monosyllabic responses. It is also likely that in addition to silence there will be contradictions between verbal and non-verbal communication.


This behavior, with great similarities with the phenomenon of ghosting, may have different objectives and is born in part of a personality that may be either immature or arise from an attempt to suppress the emotional reaction that arises in oneself or in the couple . It can be used defensively or aggressively (either to protect oneself from harm from the other or to provoke it in the other).

As a general rule, it is usually used only during a conflict or during a more or less short period of time, but sometimes incommunicado detention may remain for prolonged periods.

This way of acting is in reality highly maladaptive because it will generate pain and dissatisfaction, and in fact it has been observed that it contributes to deteriorate the satisfaction with the relationship and the couple bond. In addition, it does not allow to work on the aspects that have generated the anger, with what the reason of the conflict can remain latent.


Some common causes of this reaction

As we have seen, not talking to the couple after getting angry with her may be due to very different motivations. Among them, some of the most common are those that follow.

1. Self-manage one's emotions

One of the causes of defensive type of this type of behavior is that which occurs when the subject who ignores is not able to deal with the emotions that the discussion or the presence of the couple with which you just discussed.

In these cases the subject look for an escape or avoidance of emotions that do not know how to manage adequately, either because of fear of doing or saying something that harms the relationship or that causes him to give in to something he is not willing to do. It usually happens in very rational people and little connected with their emotions, or in those highly emotional but with difficulties to manage them.

2. Cease a painful discussion

Sometimes one member of the couple stops talking to the other after getting angry is intended to try to end the discussion. In this case we are facing defensive behavior that does not allow resolving what has caused the conflict, although it may seek to resume the conversation in a situation of greater calm or after preparing some kind of argument.

3. Search for a request for forgiveness

In some cases the cessation of communication seeks restitution or compensation on the part of the other, usually in the form of a request for forgiveness. It is an aggressive position that seeks to modify the performance of the other. It closely resembles the next point, with the difference that in this case you do not really want to hurt yourself but the other one realizes that the subject considers that a certain level of discomfort has been generated.

4. Manipulate behavior

Another of the most common causes of this behavior is an attempt on the part of the ignorant of getting what he wants. The silence becomes uncomfortable and painful so that the one who receives it, who may come to feel bad and modify his behavior in order to please the other.

We are in the background before a type of behavior with tints of psychological violence in which one of the members can end up being impelled to do something that he does not want to do, in such a way that personal freedom is restricted.

5. "Punish" the other

Another cause of the appearance of the ice law is an attempt to harm the other by way of punishment or sanction for a possible affront, be it real (an argument or confessed or real infidelity) or imagined (for example, by jealousy ). In this case, we are facing a behavior with somewhat immature characteristics that does not allow an advance and a resolution of the conflict, besides being able to cover abusive characteristics in some cases.

Effects on who suffers from this type of hostilia

The fact that your partner is angry and does not talk to you usually generates an affectation to the person who suffers it, regardless of the objective of the person who ignores it. As a general rule the person will feel rejected , something that can generate pain and suffering. And being ignored by someone we love is a source of stress.

This pain can even be physical: it is not uncommon for headaches, neck pain or intestinal discomfort to appear. It is also possible that feelings of guilt, sleep problems and vascular alterations and blood pressure may appear. Even in some cases, endocrine dysregulations and changes in glucose levels may occur.

In addition to the above, performance and execution problems may appear due to the concern that this behavior may generate, as well as demotivation and loss of desire to do things. It can also generate anger and resentment against the one who ignores us, as well as losing some illusion for that person and even rethinking some aspects of the relationship or the convenience of maintaining it or not.

A form of abuse

So far we have talked about different reasons why one of the couple stops talking with the other product an anger, which can be from an attempt to take time to manage their own emotions to a form of punishment for some type of perceived grievance (whether real or not).

However, there are occasions when there is a cessation or decrease in the communication of the couple in an active way not in the context of a specific conflict, but as a control mechanism that is used constantly throughout the relationship.

In other words, we must bear in mind that although it can be used in a timely manner without having a real objective to do harm, it can be one of the expressions of the presence of psychological abuse. And in the end, if it is done intentionally we are facing a type of passive violence towards the couple that seeks to manipulate or vex it through its invisibility.

In these cases we would be faced with the use of the presence or absence of communication as an instrument used in a habitual way to make the other feel unimportant.

It is intended in these cases to do harm and put the couple in inferiority of conditions: silence aims to vex the other by pretending that there is no or what he thinks or says is not important in order to shape his behavior in such a way that it does what the subject wants or simply in order to make him suffer to maintain a dominance over him or her.

How to react to this situation

Being in this situation can be very frustrating and we may not know what to do. In this sense, it is advisable in the first place to try not to respond with the same behavior since this can lead to a symmetrical escalation of the conflict, a worsening of the situation and a deterioration of the relationships.

It is important to ask first about the causes of the anger or the reason that may have generated that the couple stopped talking to us. It's about trying to see things from the perspective of the other , although the fact that he ignores us generates anger or discomfort, in order to understand why he may be reacting like that. In the same way we must also assess whether our own behavior can be responsible for it, and if so, try to repair the possible damage caused.

It is fundamental to try to approach the other in a positive way and try to show that the lack of communication is causing suffering in us, as well as making it difficult to resolve the conflict. It is about favoring a communication that allows both members to express what they feel and think freely and without fear.

Now, it is not necessary to be excessively insistent: sometimes it may be necessary to let the other subject reflect on the situation. Forcing things can be counterproductive.

You also have to keep in mind that we must respect ourselves , and in the case that the behavior persists and our attempts prove unsuccessful for a while it may be necessary to put limits on what we are willing to tolerate. It is even possible to rethink even the terms of the relationship. We must also be able to get away from the situation and see it in perspective, so that it does not cause us suffering or reduce its impact.

In case of abusive and toxic dynamics that try to manipulate the ignored and hurt him / her without further ado, it is not appropriate to give in as this may give rise to the use of this method as a dynamic to achieve one's own purposes. Likewise it is also necessary to set limits and move away from this type of relationship .

It may be useful in some cases to consider professional help, such as couples therapy, or individual therapy for one or both members. Also strengthening our communication skills and emotion management can be very useful.

Bibliographic references:

  • Dahrendorf, R. (1996). Elements for a theory of social conflict. Madrid: Tecnos. p. 128

9 Ways to Handle A Cold And Distant Spouse (June 2024).


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