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    • #126413
      Natasha
      Participant

      Hi, the longest I’ve been given the silent treatment for is 3 months. My husband uses this tactic after every incident that occurs after he’s blown up. I’m on day 6 of the latest one and really struggling with anxiety. Does anyone have any tips on coping with it? We are married, live under the same roof and jointly own our apartment. It’s just us, no children so I usually put the radio on to break the silence but it’s very lonely. I’m just wondering what other people do?

    • #126438
      ISOPeace
      Participant

      Wow, 3 months is some serious punishment! I’m actually quite amazed that anyone could keep the silent treatment up for that long, but abusers do what they think is necessary to stay in control.

      I remember feeling anxious when getting the silent treatment. I felt desperate for everything to be “ok again”, although of course it never really was ok. You might want to look up trauma bonding, which explains why we feel so emotionally attached to our abusers. We literally feel like our survival depends on them being happy with us. The more time and energy we spend trying to work out how to make them happy, the more we reinforce the belief that we need to keep them happy and that their needs are more important than ours. He is giving you the silent treatment to show you how powerful he is and he wants you to feel helpless and powerless. It’s not easy, but the best thing you can do is focus on yourself to take the power away from him. Try to accept that his behaviour is all about him trying to maintain control and it is all about him, it’s nothing to do with anything you’ve done. Reading up on abuse can help make sense of what’s going on. I always recommend “Why does he do that?” by Lundy Bancroft. Sending love. xxxx

    • #126443
      Silverbirch
      Participant

      Hi Natasha, I echo what ISOPeace says. I might add that staying in contact with other people, if necessary when he is out of the flat, sounds really important. You might also decide to notice when your mind goes to focusing on him and what he is thinking/doing; at that point you have a choice, and you can move the focus of your attention elsewhere. Perhaps to the radio, perhaps out of the window, perhaps to ideas of whether or not you choose to remain in the relationship. You can use his silence as time to think. Wishing you well xx

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