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Disrespectful Husband: 15 Warning Signs and Ways to Handle

June 9, 2024

We all want a husband who loves us and respects us, but what happens when you realize your husband is disrespectful to you? Does your husband demean you or get frustrated at you for small things? If yes, it shows he does not respect you and does not care about you enough.

Disrespect should not be tolerated in any relationship, as it can damage your self-confidence and leave you feeling unwanted and unloved. Read on to learn about the signs of a disrespectful husband and how to deal with a mean spouse. The tips will help you move towards a healthier and happier marriage with your partner.

Key Takeaways 

  • Relationships filled with disrespect can never be happy.
  • Disrespect should never be accepted in any relationship, no matter how close you are to the person, as then the relationship can turn toxic and destroy your confidence.
  • Disrespect in a relationship can be a learned behavior that the man acquired in his childhood or from previous relationships.

Disrespect in Marriage: The Causes and Negative Effects

Disrespect in marriage occurs when one person wants to exert power over the other one. This power balance can make the disrespected party feel underappreciated and undervalued. Many times contempt is a learned behavior that the person has gotten from his parents, past relationships, or environment.

Gender biases, upbringing, and patriarchy can also contribute to disrespectful behavior. Many times the rude attitude can also depend on the person’s circumstances and moods. If your spouse is struggling with addiction or suffering from mental health issues, it could be the reason behind them being disrespectful.

Sometimes there can be no particular reason behind your spouse’s disrespect, and they can be behaving with contempt only because you seem to be okay with it. If they are making fun of you and you have never stopped them, there are chances that they think that you are okay with this attitude. [1]

Disrespect in marriage can turn your relationship toxic, which, if not stopped, can also result in physical, mental, or emotional abuse. The person on the receiving end of disrespect can feel depressed or suffer from anxiety or other mental illnesses. 

A person in a disrespectful marriage can feel cut–off from the outside world, and they can be made to believe that all the household duties are their responsibilities. If the person who is disrespected decides to take a stand for themself, it can result in a divorce.

Husband being toxic to his family

15 Signs of a Disrespectful Husband

Respect is fundamental in any relationship. Every woman deserves a loving and respectful husband. However, sometimes a husband can be disrespectful towards his partner due to various reasons. 

Sometimes this behavior can be occasional, and the reason behind it might not be malicious; however, in some cases, your spouse can be rude because they have started taking you for granted and being disrespectful towards you has become a part of their habit. Read on to learn the signs of a disrespectful husband so you can draw a boundary from the beginning.

1. He gives you the silent treatment

It is natural to want to have some space from your partner after a conflict to cool your mind and avoid aggravating the situation. However, if your partner occasionally withholds his affection or refuses to talk to you even after your numerous pleas, it is a sign that he does not respect you.

The silence from your husband can leave you completely alone and unwanted. It can also be a way for them to manipulate you or exert control over you.

2. He blames you for everything wrong in their life

A healthy relationship is based on respect. However, if you always feel like a punching bag that is blamed for everything wrong in the relationship, then it is because your spouse doesn’t respect you and doesn’t hold himself accountable. 

A life partner is someone who understands you and shares responsibility with you for making the marriage work. However, if the same partner, rather than taking responsibility for his actions, plays the blame game with you, then it is a sign that he is a disrespectful husband who just wants to control you.

3. He compares you with others

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he will continuously compare you with others. It does not matter whether the woman he is comparing you with is his mother or ex-girlfriend; when you are in a relationship, you should respect each other for who you are and accept each other with open arms.

If a husband keeps comparing his wife with others, it puts in the wife's mind that the husband is not happy with her, which is not a good feeling. Even if the man wants his wife to learn something new, he should say it with love, as the comparison can result in negative emotions.

4. He is physically abusive

One of the top signs of a disrespectful husband is that he is abusive towards you. If you are in a toxic relationship where your spouse physically abuses you, there is no excuse for it, and such disrespectful attitude should never be tolerated. It would be best if you tried to come out of an abusive relationship as soon as possible and take all the help required for it. [2]

Also, understand that emotional abuse is as bad as physical abuse, and you should take all the steps necessary to deal with it.

Abusive husband about to slap wife

5. He always criticizes you

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he will criticize you for everything ranging from your looks to your career to your friends. While your partner might say this is constructive criticism, in reality, these comments are not supportive and can harm your self-esteem.

This disrespectful attitude could be because he might think highly of himself and be of the mindset that the whole world revolves around him. What can make things worse is when the negative behavior of your partner is enabled by you when you give too much importance to them, even if it means keeping your self-respect aside.

6. He thinks only you are responsible for household duties

A marriage is a partnership in which both partners have equal responsibilities. It’s fine if one of you has taken the financial burden and the other one has taken household responsibilities; however, it is a problem if your partner thinks that housework is only your duty.

A husband disrespects his wife if he sees his wife only as a house help who cooks and cleans for him. For a successful relationship, both partners must divide their responsibilities equally so that no one feels overburdened or alone. 

7. He flirts with other girls

Flirting with other girls is one of the biggest signs of disrespect, as it shows that your husband does not care about your feelings. When caught, your husband might try to trivialize the issue by saying that it was just a joke and you take things too seriously; however, you do not need to feel guilty for your feelings. You deserve to be loved, cherished, and respected.

Many times it might not stop at only flirting. He might also cheat on you. You should look for red flags and never ignore them if your partner is always on the phone, lies to you, and talks to many girls.

8. He does not discuss finances with you.

If your husband does not consult you before making a big purchase, reasoning that you do not make enough money to be included in the decisions, then these are the signs of a disrespectful husband. Even if you do not contribute financially to the marriage, you deserve to have an equal say in financial matters. [3]

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9. He does not introduce you to his colleagues

One of the top signs of contempt shown by your husband is when they intentionally do not introduce you to their friends or colleagues. 

It is understandable if they are not able to take you to some of their office parties or other social events; however, if your husband does not take you to any of his office events or fails to introduce you to his colleagues at these official events, then it is not something that should be taken lightly. 

You are an equal partner in the relationship, and if your partner asks you to keep away from his friends, family, or colleagues, it shows they do not want to involve you in their life.

10. He disregards your emotional needs

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he does not care about your needs and emotions. Just like physical support, emotional support is also an essential part of a marriage. If your husband is unable to see how his actions affect you in a negative way, it shows you are with a disrespectful husband.

If you cannot speak to your husband when you are hurt emotionally or your emotional needs aren’t being met because you fear that they will invalidate you, it shows they do not care for you.

11. He does not give you the priority you deserve

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he will not prioritize you. If your husband occasionally cancels date nights to be with his friends or you are the last one to know when something big happens in his life, it is a bad sign for the marriage.

Your husband would be so used to putting your needs last that he would not care, even if you were hurt by this attitude. 

12. He is not honest with you

If your husband hides things from you, it is a sign that they are not respectful of you. A good marriage is one in which both partners communicate to each other honestly and share their respective feelings. [4] 

13. He never listens to you

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he will never listen to you. A marriage is a relationship in which both partners must be able to share their feelings with each other without any fear of judgment

A marriage cannot work if one partner feels unheard and ignored. You have a disrespecting husband if he always only shares his own feelings and thoughts but is not concerned about what you think and how you feel.

14. He never compliments you

If your husband never compliments you for your looks, personality, or attitude, it is a sign that he does not respect you for who you are. It might be because he is so used to having you around that he has started taking you for granted and does not feel it is necessary to put in any effort to make you feel wanted and loved.  

15. He yells at you

One of the signs of a disrespectful husband is that he will constantly yell at you and take out his frustration on you without any guilt. He may treat you this way because his boss might treat him the same way and as he can’t speak up in front of the boss, he takes out the frustration in front of you.

It is also a possibility that he might have grown up watching his father treat his mother the same way and that behavior is engraved in his mind. No matter what the reason behind why your partner is disrespectful, nothing gives him an authority to treat you this way. 

9 Ways to Deal with a Disrespectful Husband

Woman being firm pointing out her finger

Disrespect in any relationship should never be tolerated, as it can make your relationship toxic. Your husband can be rude to you for various reasons, and before you think about taking action, you should try to find out the reasons behind their rude behavior.

If your partner is rude to you once in a blue moon due to genuine reasons and later makes up with you, then such rare instances can be ignored. However, if your husband is always mean to you, then you should set some firm boundaries so they know their behavior will not be tolerated. Below are some tips that will help you to deal with a disrespectful husband.

1. Set boundaries

All relationships must have boundaries to ensure the partners treat each other with respect and love. These boundaries are essential for the effective working of a relationship, and crossing these boundaries is a sign of disrespect towards your partner.

If you feel disrespected in your relationship, it would help if you communicate to your husband and let them know how their behavior makes you feel. While talking, you must let them know what behavior is unacceptable and how you expect to be treated. [5] 

There are chances that you might not have even noticed their bad behavior of talking over you every time, and if they love you, they will surely try to change this.

2. Focus on mutual respect

If you want your partner to respect you, you should lead by a good example and show respect to them as well. 

Start by putting your husband’s needs above everyone else’s; treat them like you expect to be treated, and you will see some positive changes in your marriage.

3. Stay calm

While dealing with a disrespectful spouse, you must be calm even when your husband is being disrespectful towards you. Doing this will ensure that you can share your feelings with them easily without turning them into a wrestling match. Getting angry will only make things worse and make it difficult for you to deal with the issue.

4. Have a conversation with them

It is possible that your spouse might not even know that you are feeling disrespected in your marriage. Therefore, it would help if you have a heart-to-heart with them and let them know how you feel. Tell them how their disrespectful attitude harms your self-esteem and how you also need some respect in the relationship.

A healthy partner will understand where you are coming from and will do his best to deal with the situation and make the marriage work.

5. Spend time doing things you like

If, even after trying hard, you cannot make your disrespectful husband respect you, it is better that rather than wasting your time on them, you do things that you like in your free time. Go out with your friends, spend time on self-care, or do anything else to keep yourself busy so that there is automatically some distance between you and your husband. [6]

Once your spouse notices that you have other things in your life as well, he will, hopefully, come around and give you the respect you deserve in your relationship. 

6. Control needy behavior

In some cases, your behavior can be the reason behind your husband’s rude behavior. However, this is an explanation rather than justification. If you are needy and dependent on your husband for every little thing, this attitude might feel suffocating to your partner, making them contempt you.

There is no excuse for disrespectful behavior. However, you must also check with yourself to see if there’s a way you’re triggering your spouse. To make your marriage work, be mindful of how you speak in front of your husband and slowly try to change your negative attitude and become more independent. 

7. Work on your self-esteem

One reason your husband is disrespectful to you might be because you allow it. There are chances that you do not consider yourself worthy of your husband’s love and respect and, therefore, do not correct him when he is disrespectful toward you. If this is the case, you need to start by loving yourself first.

Once you start loving yourself enough, you will not tolerate contempt in your relationship, as you will know that you deserve better. Self-love will make you take a stand for yourself, and you will notice many positive changes in your marriage.

8. Consult a family therapist

If, even after numerous attempts, you cannot get your spouse to be more respectful, it is time to consult a professional family counselor. You can either have an individual session or family therapy with a professional who can teach you how to deal with the issues creeping into your marriage. [7]

The therapist can talk to your spouse about how their behavior is affecting you and how they can be more respectful towards you. A professional will also provide you with tools that will help you to increase your confidence and gain back respect in marriage.

9. Walk away

If everything fails and your disrespectful husband refuses to change their attitude towards you, there is no other option left for you other than leaving the relationship full of disrespect. If your spouse cares for you enough, he will try to mend his ways.  

FAQs

How to stop the negative behavior when your husband disrespects you?

When your husband disrespects you, instead of getting emotional or angry, you should stay calm and tell your spouse how his behavior makes you feel. You should establish boundaries and ensure that your spouse knows they can never cross them. Also, before you ask your partner to change, make sure you are not the one who disrespects them.

Why does my husband have no respect for me or my feelings?

Your husband disrespecting you might be the result of things he would have experienced in his childhood, or it might have been the result of how you might be treating him, or there are chances that he might be taking you for granted. Before looking for ways to make your partner respect you, you must find out the reasons behind his disrespectful attitude.

Can you have a healthy relationship with someone who disrespects you?

It is impossible to have a healthy relationship with someone who doesn't respect you, as a healthy relationship is based on love, trust, honesty, and respect. Even if you manage to have a relationship with someone who doesn't respect you, the relationship will never be happy, and you will be left feeling neglected and unloved.

Conclusion

No matter how much you love your spouse, you should not tolerate disrespect from them because once they know you will never take a stand against their actions, it would be tough to stop them. Drawing boundaries and communicating with them how you feel can help you both have a loving and respectful marriage.

Utilize this tool to verify if he's truly who he claims to be
Whether you're married or just started dating someone, infidelity rates have risen by over 40% in the past 20 years, so your concerns are justified.

Do you want to find out if he's texting other women behind your back? Or if he has an active Tinder or dating profile? Or even worse, if he has a criminal record or is cheating on you?

This tool can help by uncovering hidden social media and dating profiles, photos, criminal records, and much more, potentially putting your doubts to rest.

7 Sources:
  1. Karakurt G, Silver KE. Emotional abuse in intimate relationships: the role of gender and age. Violence Vict. 2013;28(5):804-21. 
  2. Rosenblatt, Paul & Titus, Sandra & Cunningham, Michael. (2007). Disrespect, Tension, and Togetherness‐Apartness in Marriage*. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy. 5. 47 - 54. 10.1111/j.1752-0606.1979.tb00553.x. 
  3. Sultana, Razina. (2020). Household Responsibilities: Roles of Women and their Family Members during Coronavirus Lockdown Period. Vol.6. pp. 1-17. 
  4. Brock RL, Lawrence E. Marriage as a risk factor for internalizing disorders: clarifying scope and specificity. J Consult Clin Psychol. 2011 Oct;79(5):577-89. 
  5. Namdar, Hossein & Vaseai, Fariba & Ebrahimi, Hossein & Arshadi Bostanabad, Mohammad & Hosseinzadeh, Mina. (2021). Domestic Violence in Married Couples: 
  6. Moore, E. (2020). “My Husband Has to Stop Beating Me and I Shouldn’t Go to the Police”: Family Meetings, Patriarchal Bargains, and Marital Violence in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. Violence Against Women, 26(6–7), 675–696.
  7. Brock RL, Lawrence E. A longitudinal investigation of stress spillover in marriage: does spousal support adequacy buffer the effects? J Fam Psychol. 2008 Feb;22(1):11-20.
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