7 Avoidable Mistakes Men Make That Cause The Women They Love To Feel Unwanted

When a woman feels unwanted, you'll know it.

upset young woman Lesia Kapinosova / Shutterstock

Feeling unwanted in a relationship means feeling neglected or not feeling prioritized. Perhaps a woman feels like she’s doing all of the emotional labor in her relationship.

When a woman feels unwanted in a relationship, tensions arise.

Both men and women can go on the attack in a relationship when they feel hurt, let down, or unloved.

But more often than not, a pattern gets established where the woman uses a verbal attack to get the man she loves to emotionally engage with her. She will often apply exaggerated words like "never" or "always" to describe his unfeeling behavior. Her tone is often critical and the intensity of her emotion can sound too harsh or manipulative. When women attack men, they don’t realize how they sound and how harmful and futile their attacks are. They do not know how much it frightens the man they love.


When her emotional expression results in her partner’s shutting down or walking away, she assumes that she is being ignored and that he really doesn't care about what she is feeling. This sets off a primitive survival alarm — the fight-or-flight instinct. He takes flight in order to save his life. And she reacts by fighting to try to get to the bottom of his lack of compassion.

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Romantic relationships are critical for our emotional and physical health. We quickly begin to regress when we sense that they are in danger.

Sadly, this can be an everyday cycle for many couples. It's frustrating, confusing, and painful. And it's a lose-lose scenario. It pulls the relationship apart, causing one or both partners to lose interest, rather than strengthening the marital bond.

7 avoidable mistakes that may cause a woman to feel unwanted

1. Greeting her in an emotionally flat tone.

Even though you are tired and stressed out, she wants to know that you look forward to seeing her. In fact, psychotherapist Mary Jo Rapini told Fox 26 Houston that it takes just 60 seconds to set the tone in your relationship. 

"Whether they're meeting you for lunch or they're meeting you at an event or when they come home, it's important you stop what you're doing at least for 60 seconds and greet them," Rapini encouraged. "Smile at them, act happy that you see them there with you."


What to do instead: Acknowledge that it is great to be home with her before you unpack your emotions from the day.

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2. Leaving her alone at a social event.

Whether they're an introvert or extrovert, women do want to be with their guy at a social event. While no one expects you to be glued to each other's side at all times, ditching your wife for the entire duration of the night can leave her feeling neglected.

“Good relationships are like good teams,” relationship expert and licensed psychologist Susan Orenstein, Ph.D, told PsychCentral. “you’re a couple; you chose each other and you need to be emotionally supportive in private and public.”




What to do instead: There may be times when it makes sense to separate to get caught up with an old friend or to a business network. If you check in before you separate and then circle back, she will feel connected rather than rejected. Orenstein also suggests making an effort to make eye contact and smile throughout the night, so even if you aren't by each other's side, you know you're still on each other's minds.

3. Invalidating her feelings.

There may be times when you don't totally agree with or even completely understand your partner's feelings. In those moments, it may be easy to shrug them off. However, doing so is just like telling her the way that she feels doesn't matter.



Over time, this can lead her to stop trusting you, chipping away at the very foundation of your relationship.


What to do instead: In an article for PyschCentral, licensed psychologist Suzanne B. Phillips, Psy.D., ABPP gives some suggestions for how to break the cycle of invalidation, including watching the tone you use when speaking to your partner and making an honest effort to understand where she is coming from.

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4. Being more animated and having more fun with friends than with her.

This sends a signal that she is not as interesting to you as other people are.

What to do instead: Bring her into fun conversations with others. Find creative ways to keep the fun alive between the two of you.


5. Not standing up for her in front of your children.

This makes her feel disempowered and can cause the kids to play favorites, and may even lead them to start disrespecting her.



What to do instead: Always stand with her in front of the children. Discuss disagreements behind closed doors. Apologize to the kids together when you are wrong.

6. Drinking more than she feels comfortable with.

If she feels embarrassed or unsafe by your drinking, it is too much — even if it is only two drinks.


What to do instead: Learn to listen to her and pull back when she says you are no longer pleasant.

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7. Betraying her.

Not telling her the truth or becoming emotionally or physically involved with another person fractures every relationship. Trust is the foundation of all love relationships. This causes a deep wound of insecurity that leads her to become hyper-vigilant and question your every move.

What to do instead: Humbly admit your betrayal, ask for forgiveness and compassionately respond to her need for reassurance. Eventually, the relationship may be able to heal on its own. If not, find a therapist who can help the two of you process this strong emotion.


What to do if you're feeling unwanted in a relationship

1. Figure out what's causing the feeling.

First, it's important to understand what aspects of your relationship are making you feel unwanted. Zero in on the things that trigger this feeling in you.

2. Express your feelings to your partner.

When speaking with your partner about feeling unwanted, it's important to avoid doing so in a way that makes them feel attacked. Instead, focus on naming what you're feeling and give specific instances and examples of what makes you feel that way using "I" statements.



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3. Spend more quality time together.

Try to carve out some time for you to spend with each other. When you're together, be mindful and present so you have the chance to re-form your emotional connection.

4. Do more of what makes you happy.

If you have the tendency to base your emotions on what your partner is feeling, focus on taking some time away for yourself to do the things that you enjoy.

5. Consider seeing a therapist.

Whether you find it hard to express your feelings or just want an unbiased and professional opinion of your relationship, try seeing a couples therapist who can help guide you back to a healthy relationship.

All relationships require a great deal of tender loving care.

Without it, they can easily spiral into boredom, disconnection, and betrayal. Loving compassion holds the bond of marriage together. Without it, the relationship will feel like an empty business arrangement.


Your love relationship is your most important source of stability, self-esteem, and prosperity. If you put your relationship with your partner as the priority, you will profit in more ways than you can imagine.

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Dr. Michael Regier is a clinical psychologist, marriage counselor and executive coach with over 30 years of experience working with diverse clients.