How long should the silent treatment last?
Ideally no more than 1 hour, hopefully less. Say “I will be back in *** (time) to continue the discussion” even if you can only manage to come back to agree to close it down for the time being, or take the matter to counselling.
What does the silent treatment say about a person?
Research has found that people who received the silent treatment experienced a threat to their needs of belonging, self-esteem, control, and meaningful existence. This type of behavior reinforces the feeling that someone we care about wants nothing to do with us. It can feel as though you don’t exist.
How do you protect yourself from the silent treatment?
You can avoid the silent treatment by compassionately acknowledging what you’re feeling. Avoid accusations or hostile language and try not to overthink it. I know for me, a simple “I know I’ve been quiet lately” or “Hey, I noticed you’re not responding to me” opens the door to healthier communication.