When is the Silent Treatment In Relationships A Good Idea?

the silent treatment in relationshipsIn relationships, it can sometimes be a little difficult to handle some situations. The topic of whether or not to speak your mind can come up and the answer is not always clear. Using the silent treatment is something that can both help and hurt the situation, but the key is choosing when is the best time to use it.

While there are positives that come about from it, you also have to know about the negative effects that can come from it as well. Knowing about both can help make the right choice when the question of whether or not use it comes about.

Let’s start with some of the negative effects of using the silent treatment. One of the biggest problems with using this as a method of handling a problem is that the other person may feel that their opinions do not matter.

If they ask a question during the situation but, for whatever reason, you choose not to answer that question, it may seem to them as though you do not feel they are worthy of an actual answer.

Another effect of using this is that it can also make the other person continually agitated. Not speaking a single word, no matter how much the other person may want to talk, can actually make the situation much worse. They can feel as though they are being disrespected. It is not to say that you actually meant for this type of reaction to happen, but because of the choice to stay quiet, it is simply one reaction that could occur from the other person.

All things considered, there are some positive times when using the silent treatment in relationships may be the best choice.

Let’s say that you or your partner is generally short tempered. It is probably the best option to use this method so that neither of you will get angry nor risk saying something that both of you will regret later on. Sometimes saying less is considered more because it saves you from having to try to recover and apologize for things that were said in the heat of the moment. Staying quiet can be considered a way to save the relationship.
You can also think of using the silent treatment in relationships as a way to calm everyone down. If both parties choose to use the method of staying quiet, it may be a good thing because there is time in between to calm down, think about the situation, and find a reasonable solution. Most things can be talked out easily but it should be understood that not everyone can talk things out right away. Giving a person time to calm down so that they can talk calmly and appropriately can work to the advantage of the relationship.

These are all ways in which you should consider your choice for using the silent treatment. There are definitely times in which it would be a necessary thing and save both parties from having to live with things they have said after the fact. Using the silent treatment in relationships may not always be the perfect solution, but it is more in how and when you choose to use it.

If you know you are someone that speaks before they think, then staying quiet and calming down first is the top priority. If you are someone that is usually calm in a situation, understand that the other person may not be and so you may need to give them time and allow them to use this method if it will help keep the peace between the two of you.

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10 comments on “When is the Silent Treatment In Relationships A Good Idea?
  1. PhiliaFelice says:

    I’m a blunt person and I usually call out people on their BS. I think I need to know more of when to use the silent treatment in a relationship. Of course, even with that, I’m aiming to keep communication strong especially when we’re both calmed down.

    • Tina says:

      If you want a healthy and honest relationship maybe you should reconsider using ‘the silent treatment’. I mean maybe you shouldn’t use it at all. Think about it, it’s a pretty immature way of handling things. Let’s be adults and deal with the problem at hand once the both of you are calm enough to talk to one another.

      I’m no expert but I do love my hubby and will never give him the silent treatment (with God’s help). :)

      • angelicnorth says:

        I disagree, I am constantly hurt by my partner so have shut down, this needed to protect yourself and give the other person time to think, its not always immature that a narrow minded opinion.

    • Danagetty says:

      It’s not necessarily a bad thing to call people out on their “bs”. In fact, I’m known to do the same thing. The problem that I’ve run into is that some people don’t handle “blunt” very well. They find it rude.

      I certainly don’t make any apologies for it, but I do pick and choose my battles. I try to take into consideration my audience. This behavior has stemmed from working in management for years. I’ll never be flowery and saccharine, but I try to know who I’m dealing with.

  2. botanist says:

    The silent treatment usually come in affect when you are just too tired of talking to the person. I know talking it out can sometimes fall on deaf ears so it is better to use the silent treatment or whatever works for you.

  3. Danagetty says:

    I find that if you’re going to say something you’ll regret later, that it’s almost always better to just walk away. Of course, this is often easier said then done. It takes some level of control to walk away as opposed to engaging in an argument.

    I don’t know that I think the silent treatment is ever good if it’s done in spite. So many times I’ve heard of people refusing to talk about a situation because they want to be in control, or they want to just make the other person suffer. I believe using the silent treatment as tool to win or cause hurt to another person is not conducive to any relationship.

  4. Josie says:

    I would never disrespect my husband by giving him the silent treatment. To me, that’s sending him a message that his thoughts aren’t worthy of my attention (and he would never say things not worthy of attention, ie insults etc). Talking is the only way to get through anything, so if you need space, ask for it, go calm down and come back to the issue when you both can discuss it maturely and productively. The silent treatment is childish and disrespectful.

  5. Kim says:

    Actually I use the silent treatment sometimes. I have found over the years with my husband that if I don’t then we will continue to fight and the fight gets stupid after a while. But if I walk away silently it gives us both time to cool off and then we sort things out later.

  6. DonnaIreilly says:

    Well i don’t know how to be silent, so it never really happens in my home. I don’t think keeping things to yourself to be a good idea. I have found sitting down with my husband and talking things through always works for us.

  7. andreabee says:

    My family is Christian based, so we have a certain view on this subject. Not trying to sound superior or anything because were not,however we don’t believe in divorce unless one commits adultery. Those are the ONLY grounds for divorce, with that said we’re all human, we’re gonna get mad. Its totally fine to get angry, I think its healthy to take a few hours to be “silent” and let the situation as well as each other breathe. That’s the best solution to a blow out. If you don’t then that’s what I call the ‘regret period’ ..saying things you’ll regret out of anger!

    After the cooling period, you’ll know what to say..it’s important to always talk about it..no matter how ugly or how touchy the topic may be.

    Never sweep anything under the rug, it will settle like dirt, then come right back! Clean it up right then and there!

    Most importantly NEVER EVER go to bed angry..that’s what a lot of couples do wrong. It not only harms the relationship, but it harms you both PHYSICALLY as individuals. Stress is a silent killer!

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