How to deal with a man with avoidance issues in a relationship

Updated March 23, 2017

Men in relationships could have avoidance issues with a number of things, which can have an impact on the dynamic of your relationship with that man. Your man could be avoiding commitment, responsibility, intimacy or communication, but there is a way of confronting his avoidance issues and expressing how it is affecting you and impacting your relationship. If your man responds to this, you might be able to work on the issues that are causing his avoidance issues. If not, you need to evaluate whether it is good for you to stay in the relationship.

Evaluate the dynamic of the relationship you have with a man. If he has avoidance issues, he might not be confronting a part of himself or a part of the relationship that needs to be dealt with. Once you have determined how this avoidance makes you feel, you will be able to express these feelings more clearly, which helps to make progress in dealing with the avoidance issues.

Consult a relationship counsellor or a neutral mediator to express your feelings. Meet with the person on your own at first to help sort out your own feelings and get a clear understanding of what areas of avoidance are having an effect on your relationship. A counsellor is an objective source who is trained to evaluate your situation and guide you in a direction to help you cope with difficulties in your relationship.

Ask the man with avoidance issues if he would also be willing to set up a few sessions with an objective relationship counsellor. Tell the man that you have already visited the counsellor and that you think it would be beneficial to have him express himself to you when there is a neutral mediator to help create smoother communication. If you both meet with the counsellor, you can work within the aided communication toward a path of resolution of your man's avoidance issues. If he will not attend a session with you, perhaps because of his avoidance issues, use the sessions to get your own solid footing on where you stand in the relationship and what you can do if you are willing to work on your man's issues with him.

Communicate with your man, rather than dealing with the issues silently. Tell him how you honestly feel, and also try to understand the perspective from which he is coming. If stress and fear are factors contributing to his avoidance issues, do what you can to support him and encourage him so that he is less likely to lean on avoidance in dealing with, or neglecting, situations. Take care of yourself, and do what you need to do to stay happy and healthy, even if that means re-evaluating the relationship.

Things You'll Need

  • Relationship counsellor or mediator
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About the Author

Kim Fuller has been writing food and lifestyle features since 2007. She now lives in Vail, Colo., after spending one year traveling Europe. Fuller is a regular contributor to Gaiam Life, an online fitness and wellness publication. She holds a Bachelor of Science from the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Colorado in Boulder.