“I would like you to respect me” isn’t as good as, “I would like you to turn off your electronic devices at dinner so we can just talk to each other.”― John M. Gottman, Eight Dates: A Plan for Making Love Last Forever
When indifference takes the lead in a romantic relationship, it’s code for divorce is on its way. But a relationship doesn’t just arrive to such a tragic state randomly. Emotional disconnection has paved the way for indifference to push even further apart two lovers that once vowed that the only thing that would ever part them was death.
A different kind of death happened here. An emotional one. Because you see, emotional connection is the glue that keeps a romantic relationship thriving. When two lovers engage with each other and respond to their mutual calls for connection, no matter how trivial they are, it keeps them close. Perpetual ignorance is a sure sentence to death in any relationship. And sadly, the bad stuff always outweighs the good stuff in the love department.
If you stone wall your partner 60% of the time, you can love bomb them all you want to make up for it, it’s all going to waste. There’s nothing that kills love more quickly than giving our partner the brutality that is the silent treatment on a regular basis. It’s not for nothing that stonewalling is John Gottman’s fourth and last horseman of the apocalypse.
However, when our reaction is to not give any, it’s a strong indicator that there’s many issues that have been festering under the surface. When we deem that it is more worthy to disengage completely from our partner rather than using the communicate route, it’s only a matter of time before mutual resentment poisons our relationship for good.