My Husband or Wife Never Wants to Talk 🙁

Author’s Note: Not everyone will be emotionally developed to a stage where they can accept the realities presented in the following article.

While it is all too easy for “I”, “me” or “my” to accept responsibility for our accomplishments in life, isn’t it interesting that our failures mostly have long and complicated reasoning behind them that will generally conclude it is someone else’s fault?

Many are quick to take offence at this notion but the truth is that most of us ignore or refuse to admit that we ourselves are the cause of most of our own problems.

Even though seeing our self as the world sees us will empower us to solve most of our own problems by taking control back of our lives, it is also something most of us actively avoid.

A marriage partner not wanting to talk is the most common complaint I hear.

Few see however, just how deep and how tragic this wound really is . . .

Talk to me. Smiling happy lovely couple having a warm conversation while drinking coffee and spending morning together.

Why Codependents Struggle With Conversation Skills

Codependency is said to develop in an individual as a child while taking care of a self centred, drug addicted or alcoholic parent.

Under these conditions, let’s consider what types of conversation this child (was it you?) was subjected to growing up.

Mum (or dad) may have sat at home drinking (or taking other drugs), feeling rejected or abandoned by their absent spouse. The child expected to stay home and ‘take care of them’ would be used as little more than a dumping ground for this parent’s selfish and self indulgent monologues.

The parent may have also accused the child of not talking to them (just like the absent spouse) when really it was this parent who was leaving no genuine possibility for conversation.

The child may have been told how ‘special’ and important they were, but not for being themselves. They were told they were special for taking care of this selfish parent’s immature needs.

What conversation skills is a child likely to learn (or fail to learn) from this experience?

  • To look for people who they can dump their problems on?
  • To expect uninterrupted attention for negative mind states and self pity?
  • That blaming and complaining are normal conversation?
  • That it requires being drunk, stoned, or otherwise intoxicated to really ‘open-up’ with someone else when talking?

It amazes me the amount of time and money people spend on their appearance, while never considering what comes out of their mouth!

The truth is good conversation is really what gives a relationships its life and depth.

If you wish that your partner talked to you more, I wonder if there are conversation skills you could learn that might make that easier?

Narcissism produces poor conversationalists too!

Narcissistic individuals have also often learned poor conversation skills, but usually more in the realm of knowing how to lie to get away from the same type of emotionally demanding parent at home. “Yeah sure mum, I cleaned my room . . . you are the best, I will see you later.” they say, while scooting out the door with these tasks left undone.

This, while their codependent sister or brother sat at home ‘taking care’ of mum (or dad) because dad (or mum) isn’t home (again) or has left permanently.

Do you begin to see how this pattern plays out in families over time?

Better Conversation

In the members area series below I tackle the enormous gap left in the lives of people who grew up in these type of dysfunctional homes.

How many hours each week do you spend on your appearance? Do you work out at the gym? Visit the hairdressers? Buy clothes? Put creams and potions on your face, nails and lashes? I wonder if there is just one of these routines you might swap for working on learning better conversation skills, while your family is at home?

This series is included in my master class membership, where for a low monthly subscription, you will also receive personal and group support.

In this series I am going to teach you better conversation skills that will help you learn how to engage people in authentic conversation that build trust and lasting warmth and friendship over time.

I personally have a wound in this area and so addressing this gap in myself took time and courage. My conversation skills are still a work in progress, but together I know we can all help each other stay on track.

In Part 1 of this series I will share some simple and super easy to use techniques (you can begin using right away) that will draw people out in conversation and get them to quickly connect with you on a deeper and more intimate level.

Join my Master Class for Access Here:

Then look for the conversations skills dashboard on this page under “Article Series & eCourses” here:

Kim Cooper




This Post Has 5 Comments
  1. Thank you for the work you do. I’m sure you reach a lot of people, many whom may not acknowledge it, perhaps a little tangled in what they are doing, and slowly unknotting their lives. Trust that you are making a difference!

  2. Thank you – I appreciate the bullet points about what children/people learn from these experiences – especially “that blaming and complaining are normal conversation,” and “to expect uninterrupted attention for negative mind states and self pity.” This is really common even where no drugs or alcohol are involved.

  3. Thank you for this insight, Kim. I do notice ways in which uninterrupted attention for negative mind states and self pity are a part of my expectations. It is surprising to me how blaming and complaining are still considered normal conversation in my family (of origin) relationships.

  4. Thank you so VERY MUCH Kim and Steve for sharing your knowledge and wealth of info. You are reaching people touched by the challenging task of untangling unhealthy thinking and behavior’s. It’s truly lovely to see the other comments left by people. Many blessings to everyone here and may comfort be felt to those in moments of despair.

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