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My partner is emotionally numb

Community Member

My partner of 2 years has been distant lately (he works away, 1 week on, one off), we don't live together, and he has a high pressure job which means that he is working on his break sometimes. I confronted him a few days ago about being distant and how it's unfair to me that he can't even tell me he loves me and that everything is okay when im anxious (I have long term anxiety which I manage)

It makes me feel super alone and sad. He told me he feels numb and he can't feel anything at all. That he has fallen out of love with me and he doesn't know why. My whole world has come crashing down - how can i be with someone who doesnt love me? Ive been reading up on it and i think hes depressed. He has no idea what hes feeling and why.

Has anyone else felt like this? Or has anyone had a partner who is like this? What can I do, and can we get over this?

4 Replies 4

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi there buttercup22,

I imagine you're feeling really heartbroken and devastated about this.. How have you been coping with what he has told you?

I hope that this is a case of right people, wrong time. As you've mentioned, he's working a very high stress job, perhaps he is feeling depressed or struggling with his mental health and he hasn't come to terms with it yet or addressed it.

The hardest part I think is coming to the understanding that you can't always help them in the way you want to. Perhaps distance is a blessing for the both of you to maybe figure things out. You can't be expected to still be with someone who has fallen out of love with you.. That's incredibly hurtful. You deserve unconditional empathy, compassion, understanding and love. As you've mentioned, you have been dealing with long term anxiety.. And I can see that the distance has been very overwhelming.

Taking care of yourself is the most important thing.. Let yourself grieve the relationship if you need to. It's very hard to be in the position where you have to wait around for an answer.. And that is extremely unfair on you. Let him figure out his feelings if he needs to.. And if he is feeling depressed, he is lucky to have someone who loves him to care for him.

I hope to hear from you.

You're not alone, as I am in the same position with my wife. Seems to be one of the unpredicted impacts of COVID and lockdown in particular. My wife wants to "take a break" and live separately for a while (we're still living together as she hasn't been working for a while). I sincerely doubt that our relationship will survive that, but perhaps in your case he needs something like that to regain perspective and an appreciation for what he has in you.

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi there Buttercup22 and welcome to our forum!

I had the same thing with a long term girlfriend many years ago. I knew she wasn't really over a guy she knew in England even though she said she was.

I sat her down one day and explained that I was concerned that our relationship was a bit lop sided with most of the 'love arrows' coming from me, not her.

This lead to a couple of really deep discussions - she was so grateful I raised my concerns.

She offered to try to love me more but that didn't work - forced emotions rarely do.

So I suggested she go back to England to sort things out. She came back to Australia after a few months but by that time I had moved on. To this day I hear she is still flitting around and cannot commit to a relationship.

Yes it hurt at the time but was absolutely the best life lesson I needed.

There has to be some reason he claims to have fallen out of love with you - try to prise this out of him and tell him you can handle the truth if he is prepared to tell it.

Your self esteem deserves much better emotional connection than what he is giving you.

Rise up, be strong and be pretty direct with him - he will respect this if he really cares for you.

All the very best, The Bro

Chris 21
Community Member
Hi buttercup22, I am suffering the same was with my partner for 27 years, I was immature and stupid as a youngster .. did things, that she was so kind to forgive me for in spent this year she had enough and dumped me, been 2 months now I still cry every day, and the pain of her leaving is worse and hurts worse … I can only assume I was meant to be on the plain , to fight for her, however she says she is numb doesn’t want a relationship and we are over …. I will never give up fighting for her as she is my life and has been since I was 19 .. we have 2 daughters … and every day I have cried , been sick headache etc … and they say pain gets easier well might is getting worse daily’s.