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The Silent Quacker - How to deal with that?

Old 02-04-2011, 02:51 PM
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The Silent Quacker - How to deal with that?

The one thing I struggle understanding is how to deal with the silent quacker. Sure my AW says things when she's hammered but when she's not hammered but still drinking, she really says nothing. Even when she's not drinking, she doesn't say much to me. She's very passive aggressive and she probably knows that her silence bugs me the most.
I'm pretty articulate and process things very fast and I've been told that I need to slow down and let her process her own stuff. Is this just another way of telling me to detach from her silence? It's a double edge sword because she'll be all quiet, won't tell me anything but tells me that she has a lot on her mind. This will go on for a long time until she finally breaks down and has a few too many drinks. Then it's time for battle and it just sucks. If I push her for information, she gets mad. If I don't push her, she blames me for not being supportive. It's tough for me to keep my mouth shut.

Any suggestions?
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Old 02-04-2011, 02:55 PM
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You didn't cause it, can't cure it, can't control it, can't make rational sense out of it, and can't even make it quack.
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:07 PM
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You got it--detach from her silence. Don't defend yourself when she complains about your not being "supportive".

One line I love to use when people start blaming, complaining, etc., is "I'm sorry you feel that way." It's completely neutral, isn't defending yourself nor is it counterattacking. And not much they can say to refute it. She might ramp up the complaints to get a rise out of you--the key is not to take the bait. You can repeat, "I'm sorry you feel that way" as often as necessary.
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:07 PM
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Maybe she doesn't talk because she's irritable and her mind is somewhere else or she is struggling with her cravings and doesnt want to talk because it consuming her thoughts? My ex would be the same way, not talk to me much, wouldn't let me hug him or sit too close to him. I always thought he was thinking about drinking even when he wasnt. Im not a doctor, but it always seems like their minds are somewhere else.
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:26 PM
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I'm not sure if I'm safe to respond here or not. I hate being ignored. It makes me feel really stupid and like I'm nobody. I didn't have a problem with it before XAH; I was able to say "whatever" and walk away. XAH, however, made ignoring me an art. I used to wish he'd say anything to me while he was in one of those moods. Be careful what you wish for, eh?

I can't offer any advice on detaching from it. Just wanted to commiserate with the feeling that you're darned if you do and darned if you don't. I like Lexie's line, though.
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Old 02-04-2011, 03:43 PM
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Mine used to do it too. We'd go to dinner and sit at the bar. He sit there at my side staring into space. He'd ask about my day, but just stare straight ahead, nod with no emotion. There was no connection. It was really sad. I always wondered what he was thinking and why he was so "checked out."

I remember it I had been around it for so long, it was such a relief when I hung out with someone one day and we had a two-way conversation with smiling and sharing ideas. I had been in the situation for so long, I felt like something was wrong with me.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by brokenheartfool View Post
You didn't cause it, can't cure it, can't control it, can't make rational sense out of it, and can't even make it quack.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:33 PM
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Yeah, I've noticed that my AH is often "checked out". He'll ask me something and I'll respond and the next hour or day, he'll ask me the same thing. It's as if I never said anything and he honestly didn't hear a word I said. Just tonight we went to dinner. He insisted that we sit at the bar even with me telling him I wanted to sit at a table. He then proceeeded to talk to the guy next to him!! He finally gave me some attention when the guy next to him started talking to his companion....oh, how nice. Even then I could tell he was checked out and paying more attention to the cute waitress than me. This is very typical with my AH because he wants attention but he's not good at giving it.
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Old 02-06-2011, 04:48 AM
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Are you kidding? I'll take the Silent Quacker over the loud, obnoxious quacker any day. My AH is sometimes silent when drunk (but rarely). If he gets mad at me while drunk or sober, he gives me the silent treatment, sometimes for days.

I just go about my business.


BTW: Boomerlady, your AH sounds JUST like mine. He is always on a quest to befriend everyone in a bar. One time we were with another couple, and he did that--he left us and hung out with the people at the other end of the bar--buying them drinks even though they were total strangers. I had just come to expect that behavior, but the woman we were with was affronted, with good reason.
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Old 02-06-2011, 05:08 AM
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My ABF is like this - in a nutshell - Shellcrusher

It drives me batty. Either he's drunk and talking too much and then yelling too much and then fighting too much

OR

He's decided not to drink that day and doesn't say a word all day. He looks like a zombie, but he's actually soaking everything up and getting ready 'til when he does have a drink, to blow (or Quack).

I take those quiet days and actually try to do some of my OWN thinking. When I don't feel that 'pull' of his neediness, I'm able to focus on myself temporarily.

But I know it's a Catch-22, in the sense that you can never respond correctly. As they say here - detach if you can, so you won't pick up the passive aggressive vibes from when she is silent.
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Old 02-06-2011, 08:27 AM
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She's very passive aggressive and she probably knows that her silence bugs me the most.
Maybe you could find a way to deal with this PA behavior on your own?
When she stops getting the response from you (she knows it drives you nuts) it will lose its power.
There are very specific ways to deal with passive aggressiveness.
Just put that in your search engine.
Lots of help there.

Beth
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Old 02-06-2011, 02:46 PM
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I know exactly what your going through - The silence , no talking if there is any its cuz I asked him my abf whos been sober for 6 weeks ... We can sit on the couch for hours and and i dont hear a peep from him.
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