When we were younger, we would often think of marriage as a happy ever after. But the reality is that—even though it’s filled with joy and laughter— it’s loaded with struggles, too.
So maybe one of those struggles is that your husband is being overly negative towards you.
Sometimes it can be fixed, and sometimes it can’t. Either way, in this article I present to you 21 tips for if you ever find yourself with a husband that’s very negative to you.
1) Pay attention
Maybe he has real issues but you’re just blind to them because you just think he’s being negative.
Sometimes, all it takes is for him to begin being negative and we immediately shut down. We tell ourselves that he’s simply being negative and leave it at that, without actually paying attention to why he’s acting that way.
Pay attention to what he says when he’s being negative towards you, as well as where and when he acts that way.
Is it because he’s stressed? Is it because he’s drunk?
Try to look for patterns.
Write it all down in a notebook if it makes it easier for you. Either way, the important thing is that you don’t let your emotions blind you to what he’s actually saying or doing.
Zoom out for a little bit when he’s being negative and really pay attention.
2) Assess just how “negative” he is being
Another thing you should be asking yourself before you try to do anything is to think about how he’s been acting.
What happens when he’s being “negative”? Does he get physical and hurt you? Does he tear you down with words? Does he make snide remarks?
And how do you feel whenever he is being “negative”? Do you fear for your life? Do you feel like the worst person ever, or do you simply feel sad?
Maybe he has anger management issues because he grew up from an abusive home.
Sometimes relationships are not worth saving even though there are so many reasons family is the most important thing in life.
If domestic violence and gaslighting are involved, then you might have to let him go.
It’s just not worth the risk, and sometimes the very act of trying can make him suddenly pleasant again for a brief spell… before he suddenly swings a bat at your head.
But if none of these are involved, and there is still genuine love between the two of you despite the negativity, then you should definitely try patching things up together.
3) Ask questions and listen
When he says something negative, don’t react, Pause and think about it.
Is there any truth to what he’s saying?
Ask him questions, preferably when he’s not being negative, and try to understand his words, to see things from his point of view.
But make sure you’re asking him in good faith, and are not demanding that he justify himself in your eyes.
You’re trying to foster understanding, not push him further away.
I learnt this (and much more) from Brad Browning, a leading relationship expert. Brad is the real deal when it comes to saving marriages. He is a best-selling author and dispenses valuable advice on his extremely popular YouTube channel.
Watch his excellent free video here where he explains his unique process for mending marriages.
4) Have a heart-to-heart with him about your relationship
Communication is one of the most important things in a relationship. Without proper, honest communication, relationships—especially between spouses—crumble into dust very quickly.
Maybe things are getting worse because of piled resentment because of lack of communication.
Try to find time when he’s calm to tell him about his behavior and how he’s making you feel. And as hard as it may be, try to avoid making it sound like you’re accusing him. Use “I feel”, instead of pointing out his flaws like he’s always committing crime.
You should definitely avoid saying things that attack his character or make it about who’s doing more harm in the relationship.
If he ever points out that he has issues with you as well, don’t take it as an insult. Instead, take it as an invitation into a discussion that benefits both of you in the long run.
5) Don’t belittle his problems
There’s a big chance that when he does share his issues with you, you will find these issues minor. Silly, even.
You’ll probably say “it doesn’t make sense!”
You might even get a bit pissed, thinking that such a minor thing is not worth all the negativity he is giving.
However, simply because you think it’s not that big of a deal doesn’t mean that he thinks the same way. Dismissing his issues or saying things like “get over it!” will only make the situation worse.
Society tells men that they should be stoic because alpha traits are what make a man. Because of this, they should hide their emotions and never show any signs of weakness or otherwise they’re just not “manly.”
Any admission of weakness or displays of genuine emotion from him (other than anger) should be appreciated.
Make him feel at home and things will be slightly better.
6) Work on a compromise
If the two of you find the root causes of your issue to be things that are well within your control, then try to talk things through. Find a compromise.
Let’s take the Lego example from my previous point here.
Maybe the reason why he’s being negative is because he feels like he can’t enjoy his hobby in peace around you, and maybe you feel like he spends more time playing with Legos than spending time with you.
Obviously, you can’t just demand that he drop his hobbies entirely, and if you keep on being prejudiced towards him playing with Legos, your issues will remain.
You can, however, ask that he spend more time with you. Be very specific about what you want. Say, you set specific nights of the week that you just be together without your hobbies. An even better option would be that you try to understand his hobby and try to join in.
7) Set boundaries
While it is true that you should be understanding towards your man, you should not stoop so low that you become a doormat.
Agree on boundaries, on how much either of you are willing to take from each other. Talk about what you can expect of one another should that line be crossed. This way, you both will know when you’ve gone too far and can act appropriately.
For example, you can agree to give him at least two hours a day to himself, undisturbed. Respect that.
And he can agree that if he shouts at you, he won’t feel attacked if you to say something like “I know I stressed you out, but let’s talk about it later when you’re calm.”
8) Don’t let him play the blame game
There are lines that should not ever be crossed.
If your husband has ever tried to twist your words to make it seem like you’re saying something you did not intend, or accuse you of doing things that you just know he just made up on the spot, then it’s time you put your foot down and protect yourself from absorbing his negative energies.
He may use these excuses to justify why he’s treating you this way, and that you deserve it. And he’ll make it hard for you to argue against him. He might even use these made up lies to turn your kids against you.
It’s going to be a huge blow to your mental health when he does these things. You might be tempted to break down and cry, or stop talking to him about his issues, or fight back and try to disapprove of his claims.
The best strategy here would be, instead, to demand for proof of his accusations. But if it keeps on happening, you might have therapy.
9) Speak to a relationship coach about it
The tips above and below in this article will give you a good idea of why your husband is negative towards you and what to do about it.
Even so, it can be very worthwhile to speak to a certified relationship coach and get guidance from them.
They can answer all sorts of relationship questions and take away your doubts and worries.
Like, what’s really causing his negativity? What impact will this have on your marriage?
Relationship Hero is the best site I’ve found for love coaches who aren’t just talk. They have seen it all, and they know all about how to tackle difficult situations like dealing with and getting away from deceitful people.
I was amazed by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
10) Take a vacation together
Maybe you’re both tired.
Sometimes some rest and relaxation can go a long way to fixing your relationship. Leave your responsibilities behind for a while and spend that time trying to reconnect and build happy memories together.
This is especially helpful if the reason your relationship has been deteriorating is because both of you are buckling under the stress of day to day life, and especially if either of you have been feeling neglected by the other.
Take this time to reconnect, to live that carefree life you lived together before the two of you tied the knot and settled down.
11) Care for yourself
The issue at hand might be that your husband is being negative, but it’s also incredibly important that you learn to care for yourself.
Sometimes, issues arise because people put too much of themselves in their partner. It becomes a situation where one just can’t live without the other, or imagine a life apart.
It’s called co-dependency and it’s totally unhealthy.
Even though you’re together, you should still be able to stand on your own.
The same goes for him. This will lead to greater mutual respect, as neither party will begin to feel like they can get away with abusing the other. It will also lead to both of you being less clingy towards and desperate for the other.
12) Talk to a professional
There is, of course, only so much you can do together. Therefore, if you have the money for it, you should try consulting with a relationship counsellor.
Sometimes your issues are just too much for you to work out by yourselves, and you need to consult a professional to help you sort it out. And sometimes, even if the issues are small enough that you can work on it together anyways, professional help will help you work them out more quickly and thoroughly.
It may cost you a lot of money, but think about it—the happiness and health of your marriage is what’s at stake here.
If your child were dying of pneumonia, you won’t risk treating them at home when you can bring them to a hospital, right?
13) Get him to trust you
Maybe you have done something to make him lose his trust in the past, or maybe he’s just not someone who trusts very easily. But a lack of trust is something that can make a relationship go sour, so you should try to find ways to get him to trust you.
It’s very important that you don’t make him feel pressured or obligated. Instead, show your support when he feels down and in those times where he does give you his trust—even for something as simple as, say, mowing the lawn before dawn—then make sure to validate that trust.
If a lack of trust is a cause for your relationship being the way it is, then getting him to slowly trust you will help smooth things out.
14) Learn to agree to disagree
Sometimes, differences are just so big or fundamental that there is just no simple way to deal with them by yourselves.
You might have different political views or belong to different religions. You may want a simple life, while he may like a busy and decorated life.
These differences are not necessarily impossible to reconcile. However, you might lack the time and exposure to come to a compromise quite yet.
At times like these, you will have to agree to disagree. Acknowledge that the conflict exists, and try to find ways around it until both of you are ready to deal with it.
15) Show a good example
Think about how hard it would be for you to act nice if someone is being an asshole towards you. And then think about how hard it would be to keep being an asshole towards someone if they just keep on being nice and likable.
Think how hard it would be respectful towards someone who is disrespecting you while demanding that you show them some respect.
While it’s not always guaranteed—especially if your husband is especially selfish or egoistic—it will help both of you greatly to lead by example. Be nice (but, again, don’t be a doormat) when he’s not instead of meeting anger with anger.
Most people can’t stay mad for long, and will even feel foolish for being mean towards someone who keeps meeting them with kindness.
16) Don’t push
Not all men are going to react to attempts at helping them in the exact same way. Sadly, while some men are more than eager to receive all the help you can give them, most are going to be afraid or wary.
This is, again, thanks to what society expects of men. Society thinks of emotional openness, gentleness, and vulnerability to be a thing that women “do”, while men are expected to be stoic, unflappable, and aggressive.
Because of this, most men think they’re ‘lesser’ for showing gentleness and vulnerability. Accepting help with their emotions would be admitting that they just aren’t “manly”.
So pay attention to how your man reacts to your attempts at offering help. If he’s all in for it, then give him all the help he needs. But if he resists, then don’t push it and wait for him to open up.
If things get worse and worse
All advice so far would only work if you feel safe in your relationship. The game changes if he ever made you feel like your life was in danger and especially if he’s been throwing explicit threats your way.
Here are the things you should do if his negativity turns to aggression:
17) Assess how much harm he can cause you
It’s easy to chalk it up to him being ‘negative’ especially if you’re too selfless, but if your man ever says things like “don’t you dare”, or “I’m going to kill you” or beats you up, then you need to take more drastic action.
First, you should try to assess how much harm he can cause you or the people you love. What are the chances that he might go and hurt your parents if you run away? How much do your friends trust his word?
You need to put some space between you and him, but before you run you should know how much he can do, and how far he’s willing to go.
18) Don’t tip him off
Boyfriends attacking their girlfriends and husbands attacking their wives make the headlines quite often.
Many of these unfortunate women were killed after deciding to leave their men behind.
Sometimes it would be because they told their men that they’re leaving while in the middle of a big argument. Sometimes it’s because their men noticed them packing their bags a few days ago.
If your husband is dangerous enough that you’re afraid for your safety, then the last thing you should do is tip him off that you’re leaving. Don’t get your name on the evening news.
19) Get the law involved
If he isn’t willing to let you go and sends you threats, stalks you, and harasses your friends and family, then you should get the law involved before anyone gets hurt.
You might be tempted not to get the cops bothered over a ‘domestic issue’, but domestic abuse laws exist for this very reason.
20) Put some distance between you
Simply leaving his presence isn’t going to help you much if you’re simply moving to the house right next door.
It’ll be quite easy for him to keep on hurting you emotionally or physically if that’s the case, and he’s likely going to be more willing to hurt you since you left.
Make sure there’s plenty of distance between the two of you. Move to another town, or perhaps stay with relatives living in another state. The farther away you are, the safer you’ll be.
21) Cut him off
When all is said and done, the only thing left is to cut him off for good.
Block him on social media and delete his number. The less present he is in your life, the better you can heal. It’s at this point where you can try fighting for custody and file for divorce.
If you continue to keep in contact with him, you’re opening yourself up for more abuse. You might even be tempted to get back together with him—but think about how he had made you feel and ask yourself whether it’s worth it to go through that again.
Conflicts are perfectly natural among married couples.
Resentment, stress, and depression can easily cause negativity to permeate your relationship. But with a little patience, introspection, and a counselor’s help, most of these issues can be solved.
But if you don’t want to wait any longer before getting to the bottom of your husband’s negativity towards you, there is one person who may be able to help.
I mentioned Brad Browning earlier. He’s the one to go to when you need to find the root issue in a marriage. And if your marriage has a shot at being saved, it’s a fight worth fighting.
So if you want the loving, positive husband you once had back for good, check out his excellent advice.
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