The only thing worse than a girlfriend who stifles you is a girlfriend who ignores you.
If this is happening to you, I’m genuinely sorry! I’ve been there.
Here’s what to do.
18 things to do if your girlfriend is ignoring you
1) Find out why
First and foremost, try to find out why your girlfriend is ignoring you.
If you know the root cause, you can decide about what to do next.
For example, maybe she’s ignoring you because she’s going through a hard time and her reaction to that is to close herself off.
Or maybe she’s ignoring you because she’s cheating on you or wants to break up.
It makes a big difference why she’s ignoring you.
The question is how to find out, and how to know if she’s telling the truth if she does answer.
But sooner or later it all comes down to the same thing:
If she won’t say, start looking for clues.
Just make sure not to get too obsessive or try to read her mind.
Sometimes it’s very unclear about why she’s ignoring you and there’s seemingly no reason at all.
2) Hit the pause button on her
If your girlfriend is ignoring you and you can’t figure out why, it’s extremely upsetting.
It’s also just plain depressing.
You want to interrogate her like a cop and ask what the hell is going on. Trust me, don’t do that.
Skip the text message barrage, too. It won’t work and will just drive her further away.
I know that right now you probably want nothing more than to fix your relationship with this woman and get back on the right track…
But the truth is, most of us overlook an incredibly important element in our lives:
The relationship we have with ourselves.
I learnt about this from the shaman Rudá Iandê. In his genuine, free video on cultivating healthy relationships, he gives you the tools to plant yourself at the center of your world.
He covers some of the major mistakes most of us make in our relationships, such as codependency habits and unhealthy expectations. Mistakes most of us make without even realizing it.
So why am I recommending Rudá’s life-changing advice?
Well, he uses techniques derived from ancient shamanic teachings, but he puts his own modern-day twist on them. He may be a shaman, but his experiences in love weren’t much different to yours and mine.
Until he found a way to overcome these common issues. And that’s what he wants to share with you.
So if you’re ready to make that change today and cultivate healthy, loving relationships, relationships you know you deserve, check out his simple, genuine advice.
3) Give her some space
If your girlfriend is ignoring you and you don’t know why, giving her some space can’t hurt.
There’s a right and a wrong way to do this.
Here’s the right way:
Respectfully give her space and time alone while still maintaining cordial necessary contact.
Here’s the wrong way:
Glaring at her and actively ignoring her in person and in your texts and calls in order to get payback.
Giving your girlfriend space isn’t about reluctantly and resentfully backing off. It’s about reorienting yourself temporarily in a new direction so that she can have the time and space she needs to recenter and regroup.
As long as you go about it the right way by respectfully giving her space, you’re on the right track.
No matter what is going on, showing that you’re mature and self-sufficient enough to let up on the pressure is both attractive and reassuring.
If she’s just temporarily dealing with something unrelated to you, she’ll be deeply appreciative when she comes back around to her old self.
4) Check yourself
I am not trying to gaslight or doubt you in any way, but if your girlfriend is ignoring you there is something you need to make sure of.
Basically it’s this:
Are you sure she’s ignoring you or has changed noticeably and that it’s not actually you projecting onto her?
Sometimes when we are depressed or anxious we take someone’s behavior overly personally or believe they are treating us a certain way intentionally.
But they’re not.
She might just be physically tired by a new job.
Or really into her new phone.
I fully realize that even these new issues might be annoying to you and be putting a strain on the relationship.
But the point is:
She could have a very reasonable and justified reason for not wanting to be in touch much and seemingly ignoring you.
Be sure that your girlfriend is actually ignoring you and that you’re not overreacting, because sometimes once you bring it up or it becomes an issue it’s too late to walk back and chill out.
5) See if she needs to get help
Life can really take you for a wild ride, and sometimes it hits those closest to you.
Your girlfriend may be having real mental health problems and trying her best to white-knuckle her way through it.
If that makes her turn a cold shoulder to you, it’s best not to take it personally.
Instead, you should gently try to bring up whether she’s doing OK and might want to talk to someone.
Professional help of various kinds, exercise and alternative therapies can all be effective in dealing with the doldrums of depression and the jagged edge of serious panic disorder, OCD or psychosis.
If she’s dealing with mental issues that have really got her down, it stands to reason she might seem distant and uncommunicative.
This can be your chance to help her.
I’m not guaranteeing that you will “solve” or even improve her issues by getting her help and including her to open up.
But you can certainly try, and you can stand by her side while she goes through this difficult time.
6) Use this as a chance to enhance your life
One of the best things you can do if your girlfriend is ignoring you is to use this as a chance to enhance your own life.
There is no one prescription for how to do this:
It all depends on you.
Start by getting a notepad or opening a document. Then write down five things that bring you joy.
Here’s an example of my five things:
- Playing guitar
- Lifting weights
- Reading philosophy and cheap thriller novels
Write down your five things. Then do at least one of them on a weekly basis.
This time that your girlfriend is ignoring you is the perfect chance to shift gears and get into what you love to do.
If you’re too busy at work, just try to fit in half an hour of one of your five things.
7) Put down your phone
One of the best things to do if your girlfriend is ignoring you is to put down your phone.
If she’s not answering your texts and calls, the worst thing you can do is keep pestering.
There’s a great song here in Brazil about exactly this. It’s a duet called “Baby, Answer the Phone!” (“Baby Me Atende”) by Matheus Fernandes and Dilsinho.
As they sing:
“Abandoned inside an apartment,
Anxious, with a desperate heart…
Love and anger go hand in hand…
Oh baby, answer me!
Oh how I want to throw my cell phone at the wall!”
The song is a little bit facetious, even though it expresses a real frustration. It points out how awful it is to be fully focused on someone who’s not returning your calls and attempts to contact them!
The more you think about it and focus on it the closer you are to shattering your smartphone on the wall.
Put down your phone! Even just for two hours. Please…
8) Find out for sure if she’s really ‘the one’
If your girlfriend is ignoring you, then you can’t be blamed for having doubts about whether she’s really “the one.”
To be honest, you’re probably wondering if she’s really right for you.
Things may have been great when you first got together, but now it feels like you’ve walked into an episode of the Twilight Zone and you just want to wake up.
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9) Avoid getting angry
Do your best to avoid getting angry at your girlfriend if she’s giving you the cold shoulder.
That can turn into a breakup pretty quickly when words get harsh.
If you do have a meltdown and chuck your phone against the wall, do it in private where she’s not around!
In your communication attempts, remain focused on “I” statements, rather than statements which blame her or put words in her mouth.
For example, instead of saying “you are so passive aggressive when you get like this…”
Try saying “I have been feeling really isolated lately, because I really want someone to talk to.”
This makes it about your feelings and experiences, rather than blaming her. It lets her know your needs and tells her you are doing your best to be mature about this situation.
“We cannot control the way people interpret our ideas or thoughts, but we can control the words and tones we choose to convey them.
“Peace is built on understanding, and wars are built on misunderstandings.”
10) Listen hard
If your girlfriend is ignoring you, it’s easy to jump to conclusions. But jumping to conclusions kills relationships.
Instead of this, do your best to listen to anything she says.
If she says “I just need some time right now,” do your best to listen!
If she says something cryptic about your relationship, try your best to respectfully ask what she means and then listen.
She will open up when she’s ready.
Showing that you won’t interrupt and are willing to hear her out without judgment can go a long way to helping her feel comfortable to open up.
Rolling your eyes, sighing deeply, making “harrumph” sounds and checking your watch constantly while she talks are all on the do not do list.
11) Break through the politeness
One of the top reasons why partners start ignoring each other in relationships is that they feel uncomfortable with confrontation.
In order to avoid a fight, they shut up and shut down.
This is very bad and generally spells the end of the love connection.
The solution is to break through the politeness.
One of the best things to do if your girlfriend is ignoring you is to let her know that you can take whatever she wants to say.
Show her that you’re not going to take it personally. Be open to whatever she wants to tell or not tell you.
Get on with your life, as I’ve advised, but if you want to make things work with your other half, you also need to show that you’re not going to be devastated if she tells you something you don’t want to hear…
12) Find her funny bone
One of the worst things that can happen in a relationship is that there stop being any jokes or fun experiences.
Everything starts feeling like an obligation, a chore or some kind of performance you’re putting on out of duty.
Maybe your girlfriend is feeling like that…
And maybe you are too.
In many cases, the solution is to find her funny bone and start embracing your inner comedian.
Even if you don’t think you could make a decent joke if your life depended on it, give it a try.
What do you have to lose?
Your girlfriend might be ignoring you, but if you can get her to laugh (even a laugh she hides on the outside) then you’ve taken the first step in the comeback process…
13) Talk to a trusted friend
If you’re looking for things to do if your girlfriend is ignoring you, try talking to a trusted friend.
Being starved of contact and communication can do strange things to your mind and emotions.
Sometimes talking to a trusted friend really is the best solution, at least in the short-term.
Talk about life and love with him or her, or even play your favorite video game for awhile and trade stupid jokes.
Maybe go for a bike ride and pedal away your troubles for a couple of hours.
Just get in on living life a bit, instead of directly trying to fix everything all at once with your girlfriend.
The relationship may be over, or it may just be in a rough patch.
But seeking out a close friend and spending time with them is always a great idea, especially if you’re not feeling well about your relationship.
14) Share your interests with her
If your girlfriend is ignoring you, make sure she’s not ignoring everyone out of boredom or feeling upset with life.
A good way to check this is to share your interests with her.
Instead of just cooking alone when you invite her over, invite her to help out.
Invite her along when you go to the river and go kayaking. There’s nothing like enjoy some serene gliding and forested riverbanks to bring back some peace to a relationship.
If you’re very interested in cars, invite her along to test drive some hot cars on the weekend…
Or to go skiing with you in some fresh powder…
Whatever it is that you love to do, do your best to include her.
She might be feeling left out and ignoring everyone as a kind of reaction to that.
Which brings me to my next point:
15) Tap into the power of a tribe
All of us need a tribe of some kind, even if it’s online.
If your girlfriend is ignoring you, try tapping into the power of a tribe.
Find a group or place where she can feel seen, heard and accepted. Sometimes the solution to your relationship isn’t just one-on-one communication.
It’s the embrace of a group and peers and friends who understand and welcome you.
Sometimes all it takes to get your girlfriend to open up is more of a social setting where different energies and personalities mix together and make her feel more comfortable.
Even if she truly loves you and wants to talk to you, sometimes spending time talking mainly to one person can leave us stifled…
It’s good to shake things up and try out a group setting, new friends and new connections.
It just might be the salve for your communication woes.
16) How long has this been going on?
If your girlfriend is ignoring you, it’s an unpleasant experience.
But you have to put it in context.
To do that, answer the following three questions:
One: how long have you been together?
Two: how long has she been ignoring you?
Three: did anything happen just before she seemed to “disconnect”?
These three questions will help guide you as to what to do next and how to think about her cold behavior in this situation.
17) Why are you really with your girlfriend?
If your girlfriend is ignoring you and you really want to deal with it, you’re going to have to be brutally honest with yourself.
I won’t peek at your thoughts and see what you’re thinking, this is completely private.
But be honest with yourself about why you’re with your girlfriend.
Maybe you’re mainly with your girlfriend because you find her sizzling hot and extremely physically attractive.
Or maybe you’re mainly with your girlfriend because talking to her and being around her makes you feel emotionally stimulated and fulfilled.
Or maybe you’re mostly with your girlfriend because you have a gnawing fear and nausea about being alone and abandoned.
There doesn’t have to be only one reason. But try to come up with one or two main reasons why you’re with her.
Then think about whether this rough time and her behavior really merits you continuing to be invested in the relationship…
18) Dump her
Another option that you need to keep in mind is, of course, the executive option:
This is far from an easy decision, and you’re likely to wonder if she would have started connecting more with you if you’d given her more of a chance.
But there’s no way for you to know that without living on some parallel universe timeline.
So since you’re living on this timeline, you need to do what’s right for you.
And if you know you’ve reached your limit, sometimes ending things is all that’s left to do if you want to stay sane.
Before making this decision, make sure you’ve come to peace within yourself about ending this relationship.
Ask yourself if it’s…
Time to pull the plug?
If your girlfriend is ignoring you and nothing you do changes that, you’re eventually faced with a very simple question:
Should you pull the plug?
My honest advice is yes.
Unless this is the love story of the ages and you are absolutely dedicated to making this work, she’s made her bed and it’s time for her to lie in it.
Why force it?
Say your goodbyes and get on with your life.
If she really loves you she can come after you. It’s time to live by your own terms.
Can a relationship coach help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.
I know this from personal experience…
A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.
If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.