Ways in­which peo­ple dis­con­nect from each other

The Denver Post - - LIFE& CULTURE - by Neil Rosen­thal, Spe­cial to The Den­ver Post Neil Rosen­thal is a li­censed mar­riage and fam­ily ther­a­pist, and au­thor of “Love, Sex and Stay­ing Warm: Keep­ing the Flame Alive.” 303- 758- 8777 or heartre­la­tion­ships.com. He can’t an­swer in­di­vid­ual

There are so many ways of de­tach­ing and dis­en­gag­ing in a re­la­tion­ship that we’re not al­ways con­scious of when we are do­ing it. Here is a list of some of the most com­mon ways peo­ple dis­con­nect from each other:

Mak­ing your in­ti­mate part­ner a lower pri­or­ity in your life. If you do this, your part­ner will feel less im­por­tant and un­der­val­ued.

Not al­low­ing enough qual­ity time to­gether, or not do­ing many things with each other.

Not pay­ing at­ten­tion, be­ing dis­tracted, pre­oc­cu­pied or be­ing chron­i­cally tired.

Be­ing a poor lis­tener. Fre­quently in­ter­rupt­ing, talk­ing over your part­ner, or lis­ten­ing for what you can dis­agree with or ar­gue about.

Hav­ing a de­fen­sive wall up, so your spouse doesn’t feel you’re re­cep­tive to his/ her feel­ings, re­quests, hurts or needs.

Not hon­or­ing what your part­ner says mat­ters to him/ her.

Not show­ing em­pa­thy or com­pas­sion for his/ her feel­ings, wants or de­sires.

In­fi­delity. For some this in­cludes porn, and it def­i­nitely in­cludes sex and sex­ual flirt­ing.

Be­ing ex­tremely pos­ses­sive or jeal­ous. This will cause your spouse to pull away from you.

Judg­ing, crit­i­ciz­ing or sham­ing. How are crit­i­cisms of­fered? The dif­fer­ence be­tween say­ing some­thing in anger/ ir­ri­ta­tion and say­ing some­thing from kind­ness and tact is huge.

Get­ting abra­sive quickly or fre­quently. It pushes the other per­son away.

Treat­ing your feel­ings, needs, ir­ri­ta­tions, sen­si­tive sub­jects and re­quests as far more im­por­tant than your part­ner’s.

With­draw­ing friend­li­ness and gen­eros­ity of spirit as soon as you get up­set or an­gry.

No mat­ter whether you are ad­dicted to the In­ter­net, over­work­ing, ex­ces­sive drink­ing, TV, porn, food or drugs, all of th­ese will keep your re­la­tion­ship more dis­tant. In­ces­sant com­plain­ing. De­mean­ing or be­lit­tling words ( or be­hav­iors). Be­ing rude. Name call­ing. Be­ing hate­ful. Tak­ing more than you give. There are ways of chang­ing th­ese be­hav­iors. You could make your re­la­tion­ship a higher pri­or­ity, carve out more qual­ity time to be to­gether, give your part­ner your undis­tracted at­ten­tion and pres­ence, be a much bet­ter lis­tener, con­trol your anger and be less ad­ver­sar­ial, be more kind and friendly, add ro­mance and make sure you cre­ate ways to have fun to­gether.

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