7 Reasons Your Boyfriend or Husband Doesn’t Talk to You


Is your husband or boyfriend uncommunicative and silent – maybe even emotionally distant? If you’re asking yourself “why doesn’t he talk to me?” you’re not alone! Here are the most common barriers to communication, which affect all relationships.

It’s important to remember that men sometimes simply don’t know what to talk about. One of my most popular articles is 10 Conversation Starters to Help You Talk to Your Girlfriend. Why? Because guys want to talk to their girlfriends or wives…but they don’t always know what to talk about.

Try not to let fear or anxiety creep into your relationship if you and your boyfriend or husband aren’t talking much. Maybe he’s one of the thousands of men who are searching the internet for topics of conversation! He just doesn’t know how or what to talk about with you. Making conversation is difficult for many men (and women). Some people are very comfortable with silent spaces in conversations, which can make it difficult for the more talkative types 🙂 Below, you’ll find the most common reasons a boyfriend or husband isn’t talking and several tips for making conversation.









My husband and I are taking a relationship-building course called the Marriage Course, created by Sila and Nicky Lee. Our last session was The Art of Communication, and we had to practice talking, active listening, and summarizing each other. It was a really good session – and great practice for all types of conversations.

The most important thing I learned was that good communication is a learned skill. Not just for you, not just for your partner….but for both of you. A great conversation is like an excellent tennis match: both partners are skilled at hitting and returning the ball in equal measure. They’re both interested in participating in the game, and they both care about the outcome. And, they’re both equally involved until the end.

You’re here because your husband or boyfriend doesn’t want to talk to you. If you can figure out the root cause of his reluctance or inability to communicate, then you’re way ahead of the game. To help you out, I created this list of the most common reasons why men don’t talk to women (including why boyfriends aren’t talking to girlfriends and husbands aren’t communicating with their wives).

7 Reasons Your Boyfriend or Husband Doesn’t Talk to You

If he’s not talking to you because of a recent argument and he’s shutting you down, read 5 Tips for Dealing With the Silent Treatment in Relationships. I recently updated that article to include more ways to encourage men to talk openly and honestly. I also added new research on communication between couples.

Feel free to share in the comments section below. I can’t give you personal advice on why your guy isn’t talking to you, but you may find that writing about your relationship is a great way to gain insight and understanding.

1. He doesn’t know what to talk about

Some guys are quiet, and simply have nothing to say. My husband is one of those men. He’s often said that he just doesn’t know what to talk about. He likes to talk about the news, economy and politics…but I don’t. I love to talk about writing, blogging, and the Bible…but of those three topics, he’s only really interested in the Bible. He’s happy to listen to me talk about writing and blogging, though. So, our more interesting conversations are often about Scripture, and only sometimes about all the other topics we both enjoy.

What is your boyfriend or husband interested in talking about? What do you love discussing? Those are two good places to start when you’re wondering what to talk about with your boyfriend, especially if you’re in a new relationship. Remember that not every guy is a brilliant conversationalist, nor do they talk simply for the sake of talking. But if you’re asking “why he doesn’t talk to me?” because you know he talks to other people, then you need to do a little more digging.

2. He worries you might misunderstand him

I’m sure it’s happened to you: you say something to someone – not necessarily your boyfriend or husband – and she or he completely misinterpreted and misunderstood what you meant! Your words were taken out of context, or you said them wrong. Then things spiral out of control and feelings get hurt.



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Is it possible that your boyfriend or husband doesn’t talk to you because he fears being misunderstood? Ask him. If you and he haven’t talked about the lack of communication in your relationship, then that’s a good starting point.

3. He doesn’t know how he feels or what he thinks

Sometimes men don’t talk simply because they don’t know how to respond. For instance, when I bring up an issue in our relationship, sometimes my husband says, “I don’t know what to say to that. Give me some time to think.” He used to just clam up and not say anything, until I asked if he could at least tell me that he doesn’t know what to think or say. This works a lot better, because I at least know that he’s heard me.

Maybe your boyfriend or husband simply doesn’t know what to think or feel about whatever you’re trying to talk about. A lot of people – not just men – don’t know how to talk about their feelings or how to communicate their thoughts. The solution? Learn how to communicate better. I’ll share a book suggestion or two at the end of this article.

4. He feels he has to be the “strong, silent type”

Some men think they’ll sound weak if they talk about issues that bother them. Sometimes it’s easier to keep their mouths shut and ignore the problem, instead of going through the hassle of trying to talk it through. Ignoring conflict is an easy short-term solution, and many of us use it to keep the peace.

Or, maybe your boyfriend wants to talk about relationship issues but doesn’t know what is appropriate to talk about with a girlfriend. We’re not taught how to be in relationships, and good communication skills aren’t learned by watching tv, playing video games, or going to work. They’re learned by getting information and actually practicing what you learn.

5. He doesn’t want to disturb the peace

7 Reasons He Doesn’t Open Up or Talk to YouSometimes it’s easier for a man to just bite his tongue and not say anything, instead of speaking his mind and causing problems or hurt feelings. Some boyfriends and husbands like to keep the peace at all costs so they keep their mouths shut.

Tell me, why doesn’t he talk to you? What is your gut instinct telling you? I suspect you know exactly why your boyfriend or husband isn’t communicating, but it’s easier to search the internet for answers. Facing the truth and actually doing something about it is much more difficult.

6. The topic is too complicated

Talking about relationship or marriage issues can get painful and confusing, and it’s sometimes easier to avoid “the talk.” If your boyfriend doesn’t talk to you, it may be because he doesn’t want to get entangled in messy emotions or conversations.

Or, the topic is really painful or complicated. Couples often avoid big and important discussions because there are no easy answers or solutions. Again, it’s easier to avoid talking about those things than to face the truth and slog through until the end.

7. He thinks you’ll laugh at him or think less of him

Does your boyfriend hesitate to share his thoughts with you because you may criticize or mock him? Maybe you’re not aware of how he feels about talking to you – or maybe you’re not aware of your own patterns of responding to him.

The best way to identify why reason or reasons why your boyfriend doesn’t talk to you is to show him this list. Hopefully, he’ll be open to talking about why he doesn’t talk to you! The best source of information is the person himself – if he can open up.

If you’re worried about how you and he are communicating – or if a real problem exists – read How to Love an Emotionally Unavailable Man. You’ll see your relationship differently and perhaps get more insight into the reasons he doesn’t talk to you.

Helping Your Boyfriend or Husband Talk to You

reasons why he doesn't talk to youThe 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts, Gary Chapman describes how different people – both men and women – communicate. It’s possible that your boyfriend or husband is actually talking to you in HIS love language…but you’re trying to hear him in your own love language.

Love Languages is a bestselling book because it’s both practical and insightful. It’ll help you understand different communication styles, and show you if you and your partner are talking to each other, but in different ways.

Maybe your question isn’t “why isn’t he talking to me?”, but rather “HOW is my boyfriend or husband talking to me in ways I’m not hearing?”

The 5 Love Languages taught me that I communicate through “words of affirmation.” My husband, on the other hand, is more of an “acts of service” communicator.  Simply knowing this has changed how we talk – and hear – each other.

To learn more, read Examples of Gary Chapman’s 5 Love Languages.

I welcome your thoughts below. Why do you think your boyfriend doesn’t talk to you, and what do you think you should do about it?



Share your thoughts below - you won't be judged or criticized! I read every comment, but can't always respond personally.

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16 thoughts on “7 Reasons Your Boyfriend or Husband Doesn’t Talk to You

  • Huy Fien

    Two things that are almost never mentioned when this topic comes up:

    1) in Brene Brown’s great book “Daring Greatly,” which deals with the emotional vulnerability of people and how its revelation is a strength rather than a weakness, she writes an entire section on men and their experiences of how unlike what American culture tells men, many women are extremely uncomfortable with their boyfriends and husbands expressing emotional vulnerability. As one man said while pointing towards his wife and two daughters in the distance, “they’d rather see me die on my horse than fall off of it.” Women in this culture are primary raised in households where men rarely show their feelings, much less their emotional vulnerabilities. Their mothers model for them by being in a marriage with such a man that this is the way a man is supposed to be. A woman’s brothers are raised just like the dad was. Disney films always feature some knight in shining armor who saves the today. Romance novels, Hollywood films, romance novels, Cosmo magazine, Sex In The City, etc., all shame men who truly show emotional vulnerability around women. The whole damn culture teaches women that men are supposed to be protectors of women and kids instead of just being regular human beings who have the same emotions, feelings and a need for love and comfort as everyone else. The problem is that when so many women see this from men, as Brene Brown talks about in her book, women become appalled. They view the behavior as unsexy. It destroys the knight in shining armor myth. How can a man be protective of his kids and wife if he comes home from work crying after being emotionally abused by his boss?? It destroys the whole culture they were brought up with. The result, as Brene says, is that women “kick emotionally vulnerable men out of the bedroom.” They no longer want to have sex or be romantic with them. Because they are person that’s a real human being instead of some fake tough guy. Nevermind that many of these men have strong values and will stand their ground and refuse to be emotional doormats. There are those guys and I get that. But too many women are not as emotionally mature as they think they are, but because guys don’t write most self help books about dating or whatever, you never here about all the men who have been shamed by women for being emotionally vulnerable.

    2) Women need to understand that once you enter into a committed relationship with your male partner, no matter how long you have known your girlfriends, he automatically becomes your best friend. And with that comes an expectation that certain personal and relationship issues will stay within the relationship. But too many women love to gossip, bitch and complain about men instead of actually talking to their partner or going to see a professional counselor. My theory about the reason why many men don’t talk about their feelings in relationships, beyond the fact that some woman may have shamed them in the past, is that they found out through some way that his girlfriend’s buddies know the size of his penis or that he was molested as a kid. You don’t share stuff like this with ANYONE, and even more so if your male partner has told you not to. if you read advice columns in Cosmo or Men’s health, it just assumed that women will talk about everything from premature ejaculation to God knows what else. What guy is going to want to communicate with a girl when he knows she spreading this info around. This is one area where I feel men have it over many women. They respect privacy, they keep things in house that guys ask them to keep in house, and they understand that by doing this, it creates a closer bond.

  • Distraught

    We’ve been together 15yrs, married for 5yrs. Once upon a time, we had a great relationship; the kind of relationship that everyone around us admired. Sex was great, conversation was open, public displays of affection, holding hands while we shopped or when out on the town; we genuinely loved one another, and loved being around each other.

    Now he is withdrawn, secretive, and when we do talk it’s more apt to result in an argument or even a fight. If he is ashamed of something he has done, he hides like a child. If he is worried about hurting my feelings he clams up, and now if he is angry over something I have done or said, he refuses to talk to me, and uses sex as a weapon against me.

    When I ask questions he either blows me off, or gets mad at me for impeding on his privacy. When I confront him about certain things (talking intimately to other girls, porn, masterbation, smoking weed, or other things we either dont see eye to eye on or he feels guilty for doing) he becomes very defensive, and then we start fighting. During the fighting, he brings up issues or problems he has with me, that we either never resolved or that he never felt the need to bring to my attention at the time. What starts out as me confronting him about one specific issue, turns into ME apologizing to HIM instead of him taking responsibility for the current issue.

    So now, I talk to him and he responds in 1 of 2 ways: 1) he just sits there doing other things (usually playing games on his phone) but his body language and facial expressions are expressing annoyance of my interrupting or bothering him. He doesnt even look at me anymore, because God forbid I should take him away from his phone. or 2) he argues with me. It seems we butt heads over everything these days. His opinion is the only one that matters, and when I try to say something, he can’t/won’t lef me have an opinion. When I try to say something the responses are mainly “well that’s not how I do it” or “well this is how I’ve always been” or “well this is how I’ve been taught.” Its like the only thing that matters is how he feels, how he thinks, or his opinion that matters.

    What really bothers me, is that this wasn’t always the case. We used to talk things out. We used to work together as a team. Now I feel like I’m not good enough, not attractive enough, like everything is always my fault, like he doesnt want me here anymore, like he doesnt love me anymore. Our effective communication is gone, and I honestly have no idea why or what got us to this point. I’m at a total loss, and feeling more and more like our once wonderful relationship is headed for divorce. How did it go from open, loving, committed, and teamwork, to him lying, hiding, sneaking around behind my back, placating me, and so much tension?

    If I did something to cause this, I would genuinely like to know what it was and how to fix it. More and more, the secrecy and the hiding, and especially the silence, has left me in a state of self doubt and low self-esteem. I once felt safe, once felt loved; respected, appreciated, important, and beautiful to him. Now, all I see or feel is discourse and resentment. 😪

  • Me

    You forgot the biggest one: he’s less intelligent than you. Less intelligent people struggle with conversation skills, aren’t well read or knowledgeable so don’t have much to say. My ex didn’t go to college and worked long blue collar hours his whole life. I wanted to talk about ideas and information and generally deep thoughts and he’d just stare at me blankly and say he’d never heard of that book or historical figure or theory etc. He couldn’t stimulate me intellectually. Therefore he said very little as he just didn’t have many thoughts outside of thinking about his mechanic job. Of course mechanics didn’t interest me at all. Being intellectually compatible is hugely important.

  • Gloria

    All of this relates to my boyfriend. He always ro quiet to respond. Without expressing his feelings emotionally and physically. It hurts me so much like he doesbt care how important communication it’s to me. He never used to be like this before… How can I help him having a deep conversation with me, like when it comes to a little problem, why he always shut without telling me how he feel? All of this makes me feel like hes so immature. I am always open to support his thinking, feelings, and whatever bother him, but he doesnt care what bother me at all. He also cry when we gets into a small argument. I need help to help me. Oh My God. I feel like someone stabbed in my back, I love him so much more than anything in the world. I need help, I feel alone, stress, depressed, every day when he cant talk. I feel like hes pushing me away, it hurts so much. Please help me help him too.

    Yours,

    Gloria

  • sherry davis

    He thinks that my son is addicted to drugs,and he his, I really need him to listen,I have no one else to share my feelings with,it hurts because I think he blames it on me,on the other hand his 35 year old son got a great paying job and hardly calls his dad anymore, money went to his head, but he is always better than my son.

  • Alana

    Me and my boyfriend just started dating and hasn’t talked as much as I do I need some tips on how to get his attention or to try to get him to talk.

  • juliet

    i have know idea why he doesn’t want to talk but it just happened and he said I don’t want to talk and I asked him “is this your way of breaking up with me” he said no I was just so confused so I told him that I love you and if that’s what you want its not what I want.

  • Ann

    My fiance don’t communicate unless I start the conversation. Why at work he have no problem talking to other females with “conversation” don’t understand. He say not cheating, I get the whole check and We’re Always together. Ok that’s true but “COMMUNICATION” BIG DEAL WITH ME!!

    THANK YOU!!!

  • Cans

    My boyfriend doesn’t want to talk to me
    He always said he is busy with his business
    He can message me after 48 hours but he change slots since he met a another girl.he told he love me but why he doesn’t want to talk to me.why he didn’t miss me.what to do? He told I need to wait him because he want marriage with me.but why if he doesn’t love me why he ask me to wait for him? I don’t know what is truth.

  • Anne-Marie

    My boyfriend is scorpio and maybe it’s one of the reasons he doesn’t talk to me. It’s in his peculiar, passive-aggressive manner to “communicate” with me in negative ways…..it’s very painful for me but he doesn’t know that!! Is my boyfriend immature or just…… hater! But a very long silence always is hiding a lot of lies!

  • Te

    I never trusted anyone before. I never had anyone. Even when someone was there I still couldn’t trust. I was for sure gonna be just me forever. I never really thought about it. I was ok with life. But I met someone and I liked him, he made me feel safe. I ended up trusting him. At first just partying and having fun. I knew his sexual secrets and he seemed to trust and open up to me. His fantasy in no way turns me on but when he is getting into what I am doing for him it makes me feel good. I thought we were building a life here. I am completely city girl. I hate living in the middle of nowhere.

    Here I am trying really hard to show this man that I do appreciate everything he has done for this family. Getting a job he doesn’t like being there for his kids and putting up with my alcoholism for 9 years. I quit drinking over a year ago. I have been trying really hard to be what he needs me to be and do what he needs. He expects things done a certain way and at the exact time he said. I am a product of generation ADD. Sometimes I get distracted and punctuality is not my best. I am a very caring , loving person when you treat me right. I never thought the man who stood by me through all the hard times would be the one to tear me apart. He had been cheating almost the entire time. Porn never bothered me until this man would rather replace me with it. He killed my self esteem because he never talked to me and always did this behind my back, never share it with me. Then gets mad at me when I confront him. He wants me to be his friend and share things but he is a liar. He wont stop talking to these other people. He just gets hidden apps and I honestly don’t know if he is still doing it or not by no proof but in my heart he is and he will never stop.

    I am sooo confused and shocked that after I caught his crap the last time I told him never again. Caught him again and I’m still here. I have no way to move or no where to go… even if I did I couldn’t separate him and the kids. I do have a heart. But I lost all respect and trust I had for this man. I am numb I finally trusted someone completely and I knew this would be a mistake. I had to try to trust I did and I was right. I thought I was proven wrong because I really just felt that comfortable and safe. I forgot all about any more pain He was good and I was played like a fool. I guess that’s what I get.

  • Laurie Post author

    My husband is a quiet guy, and it took 11 years of marriage for me to realize that the reasons he doesn’t talk to me have nothing to do with me or our relationship! It’s just the way he is. Luckily, he’s willing to stretch out of his comfort zone and make an effort to talk to me 🙂

    If you haven’t talked to your husband or boyfriend about why he doesn’t talk to you, you might find it helpful to sit down and have “the talk” with him. Painful and uncomfortable? Yes. Worth it? You bet!

  • Laurie Post author

    It’s difficult to know the exact reasons why a boyfriend or husband doesn’t talk to his partner. Sometimes it can seem like an obvious reason – such as him caring more about his job, money, video games, or his friends. But sometimes he really doesn’t know how to communicate, and it’s easier to withdraw into himself than try to figure out what to say.

  • Aman

    ^ because he cares more about money than he does about you. Now if he were to treat you to expensive dates and buy you expensive items than you can’t say he’s greedy with his money, but from what it looks like he is more focused with his money than you.