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The Emotional Kill Switch for Men in Relationships

Thinking a lot about why romantic relationships fail lately, especially after writing a lengthy post about how unconditional love destroys relationships.

My wife Hope and I know another couple who has a great marriage, so I asked the woman, who wanted to remain anonymous, if she’d give her best advice for women about men. She quickly replied that so many women complain about their man’s lack of emotional availability. And she claimed to know why this happens.

I asked her to write it up and email it to me, which she did. I posted it below in italics. Keep in mind this woman is a lay person who is happy in her marriage. I have not edited her advice, other than formatting.

What’s the number one kill switch for men in relationships?

emotional available menThe biggest thing which turns a man’s emotional part of his brain off are women nagging them.

What’s wrong? What are you thinking about? Why won’t you XYZ? Nagging is the quickest kill switch of all and will turn the love tap off before you can blink.

In short, this is being overly needy. It’s a harsh lesson to learn, but men cannot stand it, period.

Please don’t ask them what’s wrong. They are not going to say anything because it risks opening up an emotional can of worms that they do not want to deal with. There absolutely is a time and place for this conversation, and you must have your feelings heard but this is not the way to find out what’s bugging him (if anything).

I’m not saying walk on eggshells – you are worth so much more than that, but there are more intelligent ways to open up the conversation.

When you ask a man what he is thinking about and he says ‘nothing’, believe me when I say, he is thinking about nothing. This one took me years to fully get!

Men do have a place that they go to in their heads, often, where they think about absolutely nothing. This is almost incomprehensible to women. We are the ones who weave daily life together. If we are not thinking of 101 things at once that we need to organize and get done, then we are either asleep or dead. And even then our brains are still ticking!

Why don’t you ever cuddle me? Why don’t you talk to me more? Why why why…?

This gets very old very quickly and men will never be responsive to these questions. And the harder we push, cry, whine or try to manipulate in other ways, the quicker they will assume its the same old same old, and shut down.

So what gets a man going and gets him interested?

Men love self-confident women. And yet most women I know, regardless of how hot they look, have body issues. It’s a sad fact of modern day life that almost all of us struggle with self-esteem and loving ourselves.

You would surely have heard this before and I cannot stress how true it is: If you don’t love yourself, you can’t expect anyone else to love you either. We teach people how to treat us by what we will and will not accept.

If we allow our own negative self talk to take over, it can snowball to the point where we become an emotional shell. Empty. Just going through the motions and feeling horrible all the time.

Life has so much more to offer us! You are worth SO much more than that! Yes you may be a mum, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a friend… but you are also a unique and beautiful woman who not only has the right but the responsibility to shine, and create the best possible life for yourself.

This way we teach others how to treat us. We give our kids the best example and we absolutely glow from within! And the best part of all- Men LOVE this.

The Emotional Kill Switch for Men in Relationships

Mike Bundrant

Mike Bundrant is the author of Your Achilles Eel: Discover and Overcome the Hidden Cause of Negative Emotions, Bad Decisions and Self-Sabotage and co-founder at The iNLP Center which offers online certification in Neuro-Linguistic Programming and life coaching.

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APA Reference
Bundrant, M. (2019). The Emotional Kill Switch for Men in Relationships. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 5, 2020, from


Last updated: 27 Mar 2019
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