HOW TO DEAL WITH STONEWALLING & STONEWALLING EMOTIONAL ABUSE (5 EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES!) Stonewalling psychology and stonewalling abuse psychology are key to knowing how to communicate with someone who shuts down. If you’ve struggled with experiencing contempt in relationships or feeling unimportant in a relationship, then knowing how to handle these negative communication styles when a man shuts down emotionally will be super valuable for you. Dismissive behavior in relationships can be especially challenging, and if you’ve experienced emotional disengagement or your partner shutting down emotionally, then this training will really help! ?
5. Deal With The Real Cause – Not The Appearance
Secret number five on how to deal with stonewalling is, deal with the real cause – not the appearance. What do I mean by that? When it comes to stonewalling and being stonewalled, we often get really caught up in what's happening at that moment. This can be very triggering and when we get triggered, we delete, we distort, and we generalize our reality and get caught up in our appearance of reality.
What we're missing when we get caught up in just the appearance is what's really going on underneath. Now, look at it this way, if you were an outside objective viewer of the situation you would have a totally different experience, than when you’re involved in it. You're the subjective receiver of this behavior but if you were to take a step back and look at it objectively, you could actually see “okay, so here's this man who's out of emotional resources, he's scared, he’s running. And here's this woman, who is also reactive and scared herself.” So we have two adults who have a younger part inside of themselves, and they don't know how to distribute their emotional resources, and so they end up in the situation they end up in.
Do you see how that's very different from getting caught up in the appearance? So next time you have this experience, I highly recommend that you take a step back, take what I call “The Narrator Perspective” and actually see what is really going on. Now, it won’t necessarily change your reaction in that moment, it might, but you will be able to actually see, okay, this is what's happening, so at least you don't dwell on it forever.
4. Take Care Of Your Inner Child
Secret number four, take care of your inner child. We just talked about this. The reason why you're reading this article is because you get emotionally triggered when your partner is stonewalling you. How does it make you feel? Rejected, abandoned, unimportant. What other feelings come up for you when your partner stonewalls you? Maybe Isolated?
You actually have a younger part inside of yourself that resonates with those emotions you’re feeling. For example, if you feel rejected, which I’m sure you’ve felt many times, right? We really have to see, okay, where is the original connection to that emotion coming from? Look into your own childhood, when was the first time that you felt rejected? Was it maybe when you didn't get the last scoop of ice cream in preschool? Or maybe your brother was always favored instead of you or you were always competing with your mother because she's a narcissist. You have to really pay attention to where this rejection really originated from. Then you can actually see, where you’ve created what I call this archetype inside of yourself and learn that you can actually “hold space for that younger part”. You can take care of that younger part and give it that emotional support that it actually really needs in that moment.
Maybe for you, that means being told you’re right instead of wrong if you’re used to feeling rejected and assumed you were wrong because of that. Maybe you’ve been told you shouldn't feel this way, shouldn't be so weak, shouldn't be so insecure, shouldn't be so anxious. There's a lot of shouldn't and not enough shoulds- you should have the right to feel insecure, to fall apart, to feel rejected right now. Do you notice how you're starting to feel more emotional resources build up inside of yourself because you're no longer beating yourself up for having a response that you created when you were a little girl?
Now, what else can you do with this part that now feels rejected, abandoned, not taken care of, isolated, betrayed, taken advantage of, all those words that come to mind when you're being stonewalled? Figure out what you really need. For example, you probably need love and warmth, so how can you provide that for yourself in that moment so that you don't need that from your partner? What's interesting about that is a lot of times the response from your partner shifts because the dynamic inside of yourself shifts, look I always say the way a man treats you is directly proportional to the way you treat yourself, so take that on.
3. Do A Releasing Session
Secret number three is to do a releasing session. Now like with what we just talked about, if you are being stonewalled and have more of a collapsing response or you connect those feelings you get from being stonewalled to experiences in your past, or if you have more of a reactive, explosive response… this is not fair, you're protesting, you're pissed off. If you have more than one response, you may feel like you want to jump down your partner's throat. What is he thinking? Why is this happening? If that’s the case, I highly recommend doing a releasing session or I like to call it an “expression session.”
What is a releasing session? It’s where you actually allow yourself to acknowledge your anger, your rage, your fury, your intensity, all those feelings that are moving through your system at a rapid speed. There’s a lot of momentum there so you can't just stop it or reason with it. You have to move through it, you have to punch a pillow, kick and scream. Even if it feels like you’re acting like a little three-year-old girl having a temper tantrum, perfect! That's exactly what we're looking for because this is an emotional and visceral response. Remember, we can't reason with a visceral response. You have to move the energy through first, and then you get to the core of what is happening underneath all that emotion. Often what you find underneath is that sense of vulnerability, but also that sense of softness and availability, because remember if you attract a man into your life, who stonewalls you then that means, there’s emotional unavailability.
So then you have to ask yourself okay, where am I emotionally unavailable? So when you do the expression session you actually get to that place where you are more available and you either create a more available response from your partner or a new partner will present himself in your life.
2. Reward ONLY What You Want To See More Of
Secret number two is reward ONLY what you want to see more of. In other words, don't make a scene. Look at it this way, if you don't want to see any more emotional stonewalling from your partner, don't react to it. Don't respond to it, don't give him any attention, don't waste any energy on it. The reason why people do things is that they're motivated by the response. So if you have a response or reaction towards it, that can actually motivate your partner to shut down even more because he knows that you care. We've seen this when doing research with little kids; when you don't give any reaction. If a child throws a temper tantrum, for example, if you don't give it any reaction like most parents will, they will stop. Why? Because they will feel like what's the point? I didn’t get a reaction. Why would anybody do anything with no reactions from anyone but themselves?
So you really only want to reward what you want to see more of, with your response. So then if instead of stonewalling, if he’s saying anything to you, he’s explaining something, even if it doesn't make sense it’s some level of opening up. You reward him for that with your response – appreciation, warmth, connection.
What do we do most of the time instead of this? When our partner finally comes out of their shell we respond with something like “Oh, finally it took you forever!” or we’re in a resentful place ourselves because we've given all of our power away to illicit some sort of response from them. Now that our partner comes back, we’re in that resentful place where we want to pay them back.. You’re not going to get the response that you are looking for with that behavior. You need to yourself to open your heart to and keep your heart open in those challenging moments when he comes back around, you will see more of that. It's just human behavior. Attention goes where focus goes, it just how it is, okay? So try that out and let me know.
1. Create Space For Yourself
Finally, secret number one, create space for yourself. What happens here is if we attract a partner into our life who's stonewalling us or is using some form of emotional abuse, that also means, you’re not making space for yourself. One thing I learned early on when I was dating and later on too when I was dating emotionally unavailable men is that I needed to create space for myself in my life. One day I just fully understood, wait a minute, so why would I allow a man in my life right now, who's not calling me back? What's so great about that? How do I benefit from that? I learned that maybe I need some space for that wise part inside of myself. Maybe I haven't meditated for a while, maybe I haven't read a really good book for a while, maybe I actually need to sit with myself and figure out what I really want.
There’s a reason why you create the stonewalling in the first place. I can already see your head shake and you’re thinking “I didn't create this, he created this.” Well, I am a firm believer that you create your own experience of your reality. It always has a silent payoff for you. So if you can approach life and say, what's so great about that? Why would I create this? For one, you then take back the driver’s seat. When you believe you create your experiences you can feel more powerful, more motivated, more in control. You can change it, you can do something different. If you have everything happening to you and you are the victim and there's nothing you can do; he did it to you. Well then guess what? You are just going to make up more reasons, more excuses, more cases. That’s just the truth and why you will not break out of this pattern. It will just keep happening.
So think about it this way, maybe you're just rushing a bond. You’re there for everybody else. A lot of women have come to me and they give to everybody else first until they're drained. We have lots of nurses and caretakers in the program and I think there's a reason for that because the theme is this outward moving energy and taking care of other people. Well guess what? When he stonewalls you, what if you tell yourself, well this is a really good time to actually bring the energy back to myself. So try it out, let me know what you think.
So now for the juicy gifts I promised! Number one, watch the playlist with my course on How to Attract an Emotionally Healthy Relationship. Second, take my free Magnetize Your Man Quiz to get personalized strategies on How to Attract the Right Man For You by clicking the button below or to go to magnetizeyourman.com. I hope you enjoyed this article, if you liked it, feel free to share it with your girlfriends!