Emotional Effects of Stonewalling In Relationships – Top 10

Partners and couples experience rough patches in the relationship now and then. Things become serious when one of the partners shut out the other partner. Today, we’ll discuss the top ten emotional effects of stonewalling in the relationship.

What is Stonewalling in a Relationship? 

Before jumping into the discussion of the emotional effects of stonewalling; we should briefly discuss stonewalling. It is when a person reacts to a stressful situation by shutting down the other partner and leaving the situation as it is; either consciously or unconsciously.

In simple words, we can say that the person creates a barrier and a wall between themselves and the other partner. It’s because they think that the other person is responsible. You can’t solve the problem when you don’t listen and shut out your partner by not talking. People stonewall in the following ways;

  • Defensive communication
  • Aggressive body language
  • Scowling and eye-rolling
  • Minimizing worries
  • Trying to reduce the worries
  • Moving to other tasks and acting busy
  • Scapegoating and deflection
  • Not answering the question
  • Obsessive behaviors and thoughts

Emotional Effects of Stonewalling In Relationships – Top 10

Some of the top ten emotional effects of stonewalling in the relationship are as follows;

Jeopardizing Mental & Physical Health

Psychologically speaking, stonewalling has a great effect on the mental and physical health of a person. It could make a person weak mentally and causes a baffled state of mind, lower self-confidence, trust issues, difficulty in decision making, emotional triggers, and distorted thought process. Physically, the person won’t pay heed to self-care, sleeping issues, tiredness, lethargy, and looking feeble.

Ending the Relationship

Distancing yourself from the difficult talk would offer you temporary relief, but it results in the form of ending the relationship eventually. It’s because people don’t tolerate such behaviors in the long term. Unintentional stonewalling won’t make you realize its impact on the relationship.

If a partner avoids the argument, they can diffuse the problem only temporarily, but it would aggravate the underlying problems in the relationship. Once it starts festering, then it would only stop after ending the relationship.

Creates Confusion

Some people are passive in expressing their emotions, and they shut themselves out in order to avoid emotionally charged situations. It is a type of defensive and self-coping mechanism in order to deal with the difficult emotions in the relationship.

When you stop talking, do not share things with your partner, and become evasive; then it amplifies confusion in the relationship. The other partner would keep on wondering what your partner is thinking, plans to do, and how the thing would turn out to be in the relationship.

Trust Issues

Stonewalling would result in the form of abolishing trust among partners and couples. The foundation of any healthy relationship is open communication and sharing your deepest secrets and emotions. The things you can’t talk about with other people, you should talk about with your partner. The trust factor would keep on declining to the end if you shut out the other partner long.

When you shut out the other partner, it would develop self-doubts and that would cause trust issues later. You can’t expect the partner to trust when the person is already exhausted, left out, overwhelmed, and confused. Trust is the most important element in any relationship; you can’t develop it again once gone.

Lower Intimacy

The passionate flame of intimacy would extinguish once you start shutting out your partner. You should ask yourself the most important question ‘what you would do if your partner leaves you out of the relationship.’ The answer is very simple you won’t have any type of emotional and physical intimacy with your partner until clearing out things first.

Lower Self Esteem

When you believe in the fact that your partner deeply and intimately loves you, then it improves your motivation and self-esteem level. When your partner doesn’t talk to you and leaves you out in the relationship, then it makes you wonder why he or she is punishing you with stonewalling. Ultimately, it would lower the self-esteem level and would cause many other issues in the future.


If stonewalling becomes consistent and regular, then it starts building up resentment towards the other partner. The same couple that you once loved and that person promised to share their feelings with you, but now is avoiding your feelings and emotions. Studies have shown that stonewalling is one of the top reasons for hating your partner and couple. Things would aggravate when the other partner takes revenge on you.

Make You Feel Angry

All your partner wants is your undivided attention and to be heard and listened to. When your partner avoids dealing with the problem face to face and lets things burn the relationship, then it makes you angry and furious. The person being stonewalled won’t direct the anger towards the other partner. Instead, they’re angry at themselves for being unworthy of love, and they would stop making efforts of building and maintaining the relationship.

Results in Isolation

Stonewalling would isolate you and your partner in the relationship. Even though both couples and partners are present physically, they’re emotionally invisible to each other because they aren’t talking. The period of isolation is not good for the health of the relationship. It would make your partner feel distracted, disturbed, and disappointed, and they don’t know what to do.

Questioning Self Worth

Lower self-esteem and self-confidence levels would make you question your own self-worth. If a partner has lower self-worth, then it is difficult to deal with difficult situations in the future with confidence. They would think of them as unworthy of feeling loved when they feel hurt, and they would lose their clarity of mind.

Conclusion: Emotional Effects of Stonewalling In Relationships – Top 10

After an in-depth study of the emotional effects of stonewalling in the relationship; we have realized that shutting out your partner and silencing badly disturb your life and relationship. If you’re experiencing its symptoms, then you should consult with the therapist and work on building your self-esteem and self-worth.