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How To Punish Your Boyfriend For Bad Behavior: 17 Do’s And Don'ts

by Sonya Schwartz

When we think of punishing a boyfriend, the first thought that occurs to us is withholding sex or somehow causing them emotional pain. This is because we feel like we’ve lost our power. It could be because they hurt our feelings, and we want to take out our frustration on them. 

However, it’s very important to know that punishment isn’t always about causing them pain. We don’t want to hurt the person we love. In fact, couples that do take this route will quickly find that their relationships are headed downhill. 

Instead of their partner doing what they want out of respect, it is out of fear of the consequences. That’s not what you want. That type of controlling behavior walks a fine line between hurting the relationship and abuse, neither of which is where you want your relationship to be. 

How To Deal With Bad Behavior The Right Way

Withholding sex from your partner might not be abuse as some experts claim that it is, but it’s not going to do your relationship any favors if you don’t have sex for long periods of time either. 

It’s important that you encourage the behaviors that you want to see, and don’t use punishment the wrong way. There are quite a few ways that you can help your boyfriend turn his behavior around.

1. Use effective communication first

use effective communication first

If your man has a very different personality than yours, he might not realize that he’s doing anything wrong. A sociable boyfriend will talk to other women, but mean those interactions in a strictly platonic way. It can be easy to misunderstand his actions as him flirting with other women. 

Make sure that you talk to him about his actions, and how they make you feel, before instantly setting out to punish your spouse for bad behavior. 

2. Don’t try to control him

Men will do what they want, even if we don’t like it. If your spouse consistently cheats on you, it’s not going to help your relationship if you try to make him stay home or with you at all times. 

Instead, this can lead to him having suppressed resentment towards you. In the end, he won’t be happy in the relationship. Instead, you want to help him change the behavior that is causing tension. 

3. Don’t reward bad behavior

If he goes out drinking with his friends all night on your anniversary, don’t suck it up. Don’t have passionate sex all night. Instead, give him absolutely nothing. Tell him it hurt your feelings, you deserve better than that because you’re an amazing woman, and go to sleep. 

This single-night episode is a bit different than withholding sex until your demands are met. It sends him a message. This form of punishment is different than saying you’re not going to have sex until your man buys you the new pair of shoes that you want. When you do things like that, punishment turns into being over-controlling and manipulative quickly. 

4. Do keep your confidence

When your man does something, you need to keep your confidence and stay in charge of your emotions. If you lose it, it shows him that he’s in control of you, your emotions, and your self-worth. Then, you both look bad. On the other hand, if your spouse is the only one to look bad, his embarrassment could be big enough that it will motivate him to change his behavior. 

5. Don’t play the victim

It’s important that you’re not playing the victim card. Don’t approach him with tears in your eyes and sob stories. This puts him back in control. You want to keep your power in relationships. Instead, take a deep breath. Then, use effective communication. 

6. Positive reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is more powerful than negative punishments. To use positive reinforcement, you consistently reward positive behavior. Don’t treat him like he’s a child, though. Do not tell him that if he can go a week without flirting with another girl that you’ll buy him a new pair of shoes he wants. It’s demeaning. 

Instead, simply pay attention to his actions. When he remembers an anniversary or he’s able to not flirt with other girls, tell him how much it means to you. Then, kiss him on the cheek and cook him his favorite meal. Try something nasty in the bedroom that he’s been mentioning. Guys listen to words, but they remember actions. 

7. Use the silent treatment correctly

use the silent treatment correctly

Don’t ignore everything that he does as if he is not there. However, don’t initiate contact either. No phone calls. No reaching out to him. If he wants to talk to you, he needs to make the effort. Don’t be too happy to talk to him either. When your feelings are hurt, you need to let him know that. 

8. Make sure your spouse knows what the problem is

Sometimes, men are just clueless. They simply are. When you’re in a relationship and he does something to offend you, there’s a chance that he has no idea what he has done. Before you start considering a punishment, make sure that you tell him exactly what he did. That could be all it takes to make him realize that he seriously messed up. 

9. Dish it back at him 

Sometimes, people can be a bit stubborn. They tend to dismiss others’ feelings until they are put in the same situation. That’s where giving him exactly what he gave you can work in your favor. If he was out partying with his friends all night and rejected your calls, do the same to him. Show him exactly what it feels like. 

This works out for you in two ways. First, it forces him to empathize with you. He’ll have to know exactly how you felt because you’re doing the same thing to him. Second, you get to punish him a little bit which, although not healthy, might make you feel better. 

10. Leave (not the relationship)

Remember, men remember actions more than they do words. Instead of saying anything, simply leave for a bit. Tell him you’re going to go for a drive, and then leave for the afternoon. This worked exceptionally well with my ex-fiance. While I was gone, he had plenty of time to think about things. 

11. Don’t give him an ultimatum unless you mean it

When looking for ways to punish your man, you’re going to think of ultimatums. We all do at some point. For example, I’m not going to stay in a relationship with you if you continue to (insert horrible behavior of his.) However, these can backfire big time if you don’t mean them. 

12. Put an intentional gap between the two of you

This is risky but effective. If he doesn’t really care about you, you’re going to see it when you stop showering him with affection. Most of the time, a spouse will see this and try to close that gap between the two of you. This can also make him see how his behavior not only affects you but also affects your relationship. 

13. Remind him that every woman is different

Men will try to justify their actions. You might hear that his bestfriend’s girlfriend doesn’t mind when his best friend acts a certain way. They also occasionally do really dumb things, like bring up that their ex did or did not act a certain way when they did something. 

Keep your cool. Remain in control of your emotions. Remind him that every woman is different and that it bothers you when he (insert behavior he does.) Don’t let him justify his way out of it using this tactic.

You may also be interested in: 3 Easy Ways to Find Out If He's Cheating On You

14. Don’t cave

It can be tempting to cave. After all, you love him! You don’t want him to be mad at you or hurt for the most part. When you say that you’re going to do something, stick to your guns. Stick to them when he kisses ass, too. You don’t want him to be nice for a day and then go back to doing the same behavior. You want an apology and changed behavior. 

15. Cancel anything fun you had planned

The brain works on a reward-based system. If you had a hot date night planned or were going to surprise him with a present that you know he has been wanting, cancel it. You can give him the present or have another date night later. When you continue to do all of those wonderful things, it gives his brain the message that his actions are okay. That is not something you want to do. 

16. Stop caring for a bit

If you normally make sure that he eats right, stop nagging him about it. Ignore that he’s cold. Don’t make him his plate for dinner. All of those little things matter to him, and men remember actions. When you stop doing them, he’s going to take a good look at what he did. This is a quick and effective way to send a man a message about how his actions have hurt you. 

17. Watch your approach

watch your approach

The approach is one of the most important things you need to keep in mind. When discussing the infraction, you need to watch your body language, your tone, and even your mood. 

When you’re in a bad mood, it can show in your tone. Your spouse might perceive your tone as you being angrier than you are, or not being in charge of your emotions. Your body language can make him feel like he shouldn’t say a word, even if you want him to communicate. 

Instead, take a gentle approach to this situation. If you’re seething with anger, wait until you are calm to have the conversation. Don’t punish someone out of anger. The goal is to teach them how to treat you, not to make them suffer. 

When you have the right attitude, have the conversation. Don’t act as though you’re his mother, yell at him and tell him what his punishment is. 

Instead, let him say a word or two if he wants to communicate. Couples that can find this balance will discover that they are able to solve problems together. Make sure that you use open body language to encourage communication and avoid conflict. 

FAQs

How do you punish your boyfriend for breaking a promise?

Tell him how disappointed you are. Inform him that it broke your trust in him. Men want love and approval, and not having that from you will crush them. He’ll work hard to regain your trust if he truly values you as both his girlfriend and as a person. 

How do you make my boyfriend feel guilty for hurting me?

You can’t. You can tell him that he hurt you, and let him see you cry. However, if he doesn’t feel guilty there is nothing more that you can do but see the situation for what it is. We have power over our own emotions, but not over anyone else’s. 

How do you deal with a harsh boyfriend?

Set reasonable boundaries and expectations. Don’t take him being harsh personally if you can avoid it. Some men are simply like this and believe that they are doing good or helping you. If you can’t deal with it, tell him that you want him to change. How he responds will tell you where your relationship is headed. 

How do I make him keep his promise?

Encourage him to keep his promise by praising him and offering positive rewards when he does. When he doesn’t, you have two options. Either let him know how it makes you feel and affects the relationship or ignore it. Over time, people are conditioned to do things that give them a reward. 

How do you deal with a broken promise in a relationship?

Make sure that the promise, and the expectation for him to keep it, was reasonable. If it wasn’t possible to keep the promise, tell him you don’t like that he broke the promise but you understand. Promises that were possible to keep shouldn’t be broken. Inform him that it hurts you, and it hurt how much you trust him. 

To Conclude

When you want to punish your spouse, it’s always important to try to communicate first, make sure the punishment fits the crime, and expect changed behavior. What else would you advise readers to do?

You may also be interested in: 3 Easy Ways to Find Out If He's Cheating On You

Sonya Schwartz
A hopeless romantic that struggled for many years to find her Mr "Right" and made all the mistakes you could think of while dating. Known for always choosing the wrong guys or messing up relationships, Sonya was finally able to change her approach and mindset when it came to dating which helped her eventually find the man of her dreams and become happily married. You can read more about me here...

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