Are you in a relationship with an "unemotional" person?

June 22,2017 By: Mansi poddar

Are you in a relationship with an “unemotional” person?                                                                                 Recognizing Emotional Unavailability

“Before the truth can set you free, you need to recognize which lie is holding you hostage.”

Being in a relationship with someone who is emotionally unavailable can be painful and distressing, as it is often impossible to reach out to your partner. The root of the problem lies in a lack of empathy, which can make them evade conversations by creating excuses, or avoid talking about key issues pertaining to the relationship.

images (3)Unfortunately, you may find your partner overtly critical or frequently angry, which can create a distance between you two. It is normal to feel isolation and rejection due to this, as facing negligence can be emotionally very difficult. In most cases, women complain about emotionally unavailable men, but many don’t realize they’re emotionally unavailable as well. So whether as a man or a woman, it is important to not be in denial of your own unavailability too.



Types of Unavailability

Unavailability can be of two kinds: temporary and chronic.

Certain people, owing to psychological conditions or a history of childhood trauma, have always been unavailable. For others, education, health, family obligations and other factors may take precedence over a relationship. People recently divorced or widowed may temporarily not be ready to get involved with someone new. There are others who fear risking emotional attachment and love owing to being hurt by one or more relationships, which may include a fragmented relationship with parents. Reasons for emotional unavailability may overlap at times, contributing to the person’s detachment. In many cases it is difficult to determine if the problem is chronic or temporary.

Commitment does not come easy and there may be several reasons that might inhibit the person. For example, a person living in another state or someone who is married or still in love with someone else. Similarly, people prone to addictions as well as those with stressful jobs can be unavailable because other factors consume most of their time. Some people may give the illusion of being available by discussing their feelings and their past, but might not be ready or willing to make the emotional commitment required in a relationship.



Spotting someone Emotionally Unavailable

Here are a few warning signs that may signal unavailability, especially when several add up. They are applicable for everyone, regardless of gender.

  1. Flatterers: People who resort to flattery can be careful listeners and seasoned communicators, with some presenting a vulnerable side of themselves. They usually prefer short-term intimacy with the prime thrill being in the chase rather than the catch.
  1. Controllers: Inflexible people who refuse to adjust even at the inconvenience of others . Typically, commitment-phobes are averse to making compromises and all relationships revolve around them.
  1. Listen Carefully:  Your partner may hint or openly say that they are not good at relationship or that they aren’t ready for marriage or serious commitment. Listen to these facts carefully and consider them.
  1. The Past:If the person had a prior long term relationship, find out why it ended. It may help you understand them better.
  1. Perfectionists: They always tend to look for flaws in the opposite sex and then move on. This is chiefly because they shy away from intimacy. With some excuse or the other, they will eventually end the relationship.
  1. Anger:Try and notice instance of rudeness when they deal with other people like during traffic jam or with waiters. This may reveal pent-up rage. This may hint as a pattern of emotional abusiveness.
  1. Arrogance: Someone who compulsively brags and exaggerates their image may suffer from low self-esteem and unfit for commitment.
  1. Being Late: Being habitually late can indicate that the person is avoiding the relationship, but punctuality might not necessarily suggest otherwise.
  1. Evasiveness:Being overtly secretive or asking inappropriate questions about money or sex may indicate ulterior intentions and unwillingness to let a relationship grow. On the other hand, someone may conceal his or her past due to shame, which may create a wall that’s difficult to break.
  1. Seduction: Be wary of ill timed sexual cues. Seducers avoid authenticity because they don’t believe they’re enough to keep a partner. Once the relationship gets real, they’ll sabotage it. Seduction is a power-play and about conquest.

Emotional availability is usually revealed early on. Don’t be blind to signs even if the person seems apparently perfect. If they turn out emotionally unavailable, you’ll left with nothing but pain. If you ignore or be in denial about short-term disappointment, you risk enduring long-term misery.



Understanding Yourself

It is equally necessary that you are honest about your own emotional availability.

Here are a few questions you should consider.

  1. Do you feel anger o condescension towards the opposite sex? If yes, you may need to heal from past negative experiences before committing someone.
  2. Do you fear losing your independence if you get into a relationship?
  3. Do you avoid getting together and create excuses for the same?
  4. Do you fear falling in love to protect yourself from getting hurt?
  5. Are you distrustful? Do acts of deceit or lies from the past affect your present?
  6. Do you avoid intimacy by filling quiet times with distractions?
  7. Do you feel uncomfortable talking about yourself and your feelings?
  8. Do you usually like to keep your options open in case someone better comes along?
  9. Are you scared that a relationship may place too many expectations on you?


Many a times we are left with a lot of pain and confusion due to such relationships. If you feel you are struggling to cope, do not hesitate to contact a professional for some support.