Shutting down during an argument happens. It’s normal…sometimes.

why you shut down during arguments

However shutting down is something that should be an exception to your communication style and not the norm.

There are times when shutting down is protective and productive, anyone remember, “when you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything at all?”

Or shutting down is protective when it is to “cool off”.

However, shutting down makes it nearly impossible to have a productive conversation that ever leads to any type of change.

So, look through the reasons you may shut down and see which one resonates with you.

  1. You feel like you’re not being heard.
  2. You feel like the topic being discussed is just a small part of a much larger problem, which is overwhelming to talk about.
  3. You’re afraid of opening Pandora’s box.
  4. You are emotionally flooded.
  5. Your partner invalidates what you’re saying.
  6. You are tired of having the same discussion.
  7. Your partner is overpowering or disrespecting you.
  8. You are hopeless that the discussion will go anywhere.

why you shut down during arguments



Next time you are in an argument, instead of shutting down, state this reason in a respectful way.

Like, “I feel like you’re not hearing what I’m saying” or “I would like to work this out, but I feel really emotionally overwhelmed.”

This can help to further the conversation and hopefully work on HOW you talk vs. just WHAT you talk about.

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