How Stonewalling Impacts Relationships

How Stonewalling Impacts Relationships


Every couple experiences a challenging time in their relationship. The length of the relationship might, however, be significantly impacted when one of the partners excludes the other. The consequences of stonewalling can be quite emotional. People frequently are unaware that they are being blocked, though.

The appropriate course of action in a difficult situation in a relationship would be to confront the problems at first hand and devise a solution. This method also requires acknowledging and expressing a lot of unpleasant feelings. That's why, whether consciously or unconsciously, some people react to stressful situations by freezing up and building a wall between themselves and the impending issue. This response is referred known as stonewalling.

To put it simply, a person puts up a figurative barrier between themselves and the issue or the person they hold accountable. When a partner won't listen, problems are challenging to resolve. Like speaking to a brick wall, a healthy relationship is built on the core idea of communication, and when that stops, the emotional impacts of stonewalling start to show. Here are a few stonewalling examples to assist you grasp the concept and determine whether you or your partner is using it in a relationship:

  • Obsessive ideas and actions
  • Refusing to answer any queries
  • Avoidance and scapegoating
  • Putting up a busy front or immediately switching to another task
  • Attempting to reduce your worries
  • Scowling and rolling the eyes
  • Aggressive physical behavior.
  • Communicating defensively

These are a few instances of stonewalling that may not have come up in your relationship. Inability to detect stonewalling is a tendency to place the blame on oneself or others rather than understanding why your partner has stopped responding to you or the issue. Of course, this could result in strain and stress on the emotional level.

Stonewalling may have emotional repercussions in relationships if it continues for a while. Stonewalling can result in minor disputes getting out of hand since it makes it harder for a couple to discuss their problems. When faced with it, the psychology of stonewalling may frequently push people to the brink of despair, driving them to say or do anything to end the cycle of being ignored. In such situations, talking to an online Couple Counsellor will be helpful.

A more serious quarrel than the original matter warranted could result from the stonewalling partner's intense aggravation. Therefore, stonewalling not only results in problems but also exacerbates already existing problems between relationships.

1. It makes you feel isolated

A pair has to feel connected for a love relationship to be successful. But feeling alone is one of the emotional consequences of stonewalling. Even in a partnership, one partner's refusal to listen and solve difficulties might make the other feel lonely.

Stonewalling makes you feel isolated in the relationship and invisible to your partner. The couple's wall serves as a metaphor, and rather than bringing them closer together, it pulls them apart. In the process, emotional closeness starts to deteriorate.

2. You can develop anger issues

When sharing something with a loved one, it is crucial to be heard or acknowledged. Every relationship has issues, but rage can develop when one partner refuses to address the issue and allows it to erode the relationship's basis.

Not only is anger focused at the partner who is refusing to cooperate, but also at oneself for allowing someone else to treat one in such a way. The individual who is being stonewalled may believe they are unlovable and, as a result, feel perpetually irritated with themselves. Although the impacts of stonewalling on the victim are much worse than on the stonewaller, it ultimately destroys the relationship that the two individuals had up until one of them stopped putting in the effort.

3. Developing resentment

The gradual but persistent escalation of animosity in a relationship is another emotional consequence of stonewalling. You have a person in front of you who you once claimed to love unreservedly and who also makes that claim. But now that same relationship has abandoned you and disregarded your feelings, beliefs, and opinions.

4. Low self-esteem

When we express our love for someone, we bare our souls to them and pour out the many private thoughts and feelings that no one else has ever heard or seen. Knowing someone loves you gives you an unseen sense of pride and raises your self-esteem. However, it can be detrimental to your self-esteem when the same individual starts to act indifferent, refuses to interact, or worse, give you the impression that you are deserving of being stonewalled as a form of punishment. Intentional or accidental stonewalling can lower the recipient's self-esteem, which can later become the starting point for more serious issues.

5. Decreased intimacy

Intimacy between the pair suffers as a result of stonewalling, which has further emotional effects. The once-sparkling chemistry would start to feel flat and virtually nonexistent.

6. It can end your relationship

Even though stonewalling your partner may provide momentary solace, it might ultimately result in the breakdown of a relationship. Nobody can be expected to tolerate the actions and allow them to interfere with their enjoyment.

7. It can hamper your physical and mental health

Your mental and physical health may be negatively affected if you avoid talking about psychology. The individual who is being stonewalled may eventually find oneself peering through the thin end of emotional inaccessibility as they battle poor mental and physical health. They might develop stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression due to stonewalling in relationship.

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Contributed by: - Dr (Prof) R K SuriBest Clinical Psychologist in Delhi, NCR  &  Aditi Bhardwaj