Is your boyfriend grieving and pushing you away?
I know how upsetting and frustrating this feels.
You only want to help, yet the more you try to help the more he pushes you away.
Despite his actions, your boyfriend needs you more than ever at this time, however.
Try not to take it personally or feel hurt. As long as you’re patient, understanding, and offer your support, you’ll find a way through this together.
Why Do Men Pull Away When Grieving?
It’s natural for men to withdraw when they’re grieving. It’s not something you should take personally.
The death of a loved one, whether it’s a parent, friend, or even a pet, can trigger all sorts of emotions that are difficult to deal with.
Your boyfriend likely does not know how to express what he’s feeling, so he pulls away and isolates instead.
He may feel like he needs to grieve alone, that he’s not ready to open up to you just yet, or even that he doesn’t want to be a burden on you.
Whatever his reasons are, it’s important to give him the space he needs while he’s making it obvious that he wants space.
But it’s also equally as important that you let him know that you’re there for him when he’s ready.
How Can I Comfort My Boyfriend Who Is Grieving?
There are a few things you can do to comfort your boyfriend who is grieving:
- Acknowledge his loss. No matter how well you knew the person he lost, your boyfriend needs to know that you understand what he’s going through and that you’re there for him.
- Be patient. Grieving takes time and there is no set timeline. It’s important to be patient with your boyfriend as he goes through this process.
- Encourage him to express his emotions. Whether it’s through talking, writing, or even art, encourage your boyfriend to express what he’s feeling. It will help him to work through his grief.
- Offer your support. Let your boyfriend know that you’re there for him, no matter what he needs. Whether he wants to talk or just needs a hug, be there for him.
- Respect his wishes. Everyone deals with grief in their own way. Whatever your boyfriend wants to do to help him get through this, respect it no matter if it’s how you think he should be handling his loss.
Taking into account all of the above, it’s just as important that you treat your boyfriend and his situation as unique.
No two people, circumstances, and grieving processes are the same. You can’t be sure what to expect or how he’ll react, so be prepared to be flexible.
Should I Give My Grieving Boyfriend Space?
I know how difficult it is to back away when you see a loved one hurting so bad. But it’s essential that you give your boyfriend space when he’s grieving.
If he’s pushing you away you need to keep in mind that it’s not personal, it’s just how he wants to deal with his grief.
Most people, and more so men, need time and space to deal with their emotions in the way that feels right for them.
So be patient, understanding, and supportive. He’ll reach out and let you in when he’s ready, and it’s crucial that you’re there without judgment when he does.
How Long Will It Take My Boyfriend to Get Over His Grief?
The hard part is that there’s no set timeline for grief.
Some people may start to feel better after a few weeks while others may take months or even years.
It all depends on the individual and their unique situation. The most important thing you can do is be there for your boyfriend, no matter how long it takes him to grieve.
There are things you can do to help him, of course, but you tread a fine line between making him feel pressured to move on and letting him know you’re there when he’s ready.
It’s a difficult balance, but if you can find it, your boyfriend will eventually come out the other side and be able to move on with his life.
And you’ll be there with him, every step of the way.
If you do feel that he’s really suffering, however, you should suggest that he seeks professional help.
A counselor can offer him the tools he needs to deal with his grief in a healthy way and help him to move on.
Moving Forward Together and Being Stronger as A Couple
It’s hard to see the one you love in pain and not be able to do anything to fix it.
Losing a loved one or someone important is always difficult, and you have to accept that your boyfriend may not be the same going forward.
Traumatic events often change us, but it doesn’t have to be for the worse. Quite the opposite, in fact.
If your boyfriend has taken advantage of the support and help being offered by you and other loved ones, this should help shape him and make him a stronger person going forward.
It should also have a positive impact on your relationship and strengthen the bond between the two of you.
No one wants to go through the grieving process, but doing so together is only going to bring you both together in the long term.
So don’t give up on your boyfriend or your relationship if he’s pushing you away!
Image credits – Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.