18 Signs Your Spouse Needs More Attention

18 Signs Your Spouse Needs More Attention
© Nathan McBride / Unsplash

By Bryanne Salazar,

Let's be honest, marriage is hard. One partner might be happy to spend time alone while the other might feel neglected. Find out if your spouse is sending you a sign she is not getting enough one-on-one time with you to keep your marriage happy and secure.

Your significant other tells you

By far, the easiest sign your spouse wants more of your attention is that he's telling you so. If you're hearing things like, "We don't spend enough time together" or "I miss you," your spouse is clearly letting you know that he needs more of your time and attention.

Your spouse is extra clingy

Does your spouse seem to be extra touchy-feely with you? She might be sending you a sign that she needs more attention. When a partner seems constantly clingy, she might be demonstrating a fear of abandonment and may be trying to ease that anxiety by excessively demonstrating her love.

Your partner seems more distant

In contrast to being extra clingy, some partners who feel neglected might become distant. This avoidance could be a sign that your partner feels low on your list of priorities and could use more affection, time, and attention to prove he's an important part of your daily life.

Your significant other doesn't want to do things together

Did your spouse once delight in making weekend plans with you, yet these days she doesn't even make the effort to spend time together? This could be a sign that she's missed your attention for far too long. When couples lead independent lives and don't make time to reconnect, it's not uncommon for one or both of them to pull away from the relationship and spend time alone, or with those who seem to actually wants her company.

Your spouse gets upset over little things

Is your partner uncharacteristically mad about things that seem small and inconsequential? If this is unusual behavior from your spouse, this could be a sign that he needs more attention from you. Acting out in anger is typically a symptom of feeling unhappy or stressed in other areas of our life and could be a major red flag that your spouse feels neglected.

Your significant other seems more irritable

Much like getting mad about small things, if your spouse is constantly irritated by you, she might be going through attention withdrawal. The reason? Spending so much time without our partners can lead us to forget what we enjoyed about them, and we develop our own routines that don't include the person who's neglecting us. When an emotionally or physically absent spouse suddenly appears, it can feel more like an annoyance than a chance to reconnect.

Your spouse is jealous of time you spend with others

Does your usually trusting spouse suddenly seem bothered by the time and attention you're giving others? This is a red flag that he's feeling left out of your life. Consider this: If a majority of your free time is spent with your friends or other family members, then it's likely your partner might be feeling jealous and in need of dedicated time together.

Your partner is not interested in having s*x

It might seem odd that a spouse in need of attention would deny their partner sex, but it makes perfect sense when you think about it. When someone isn't getting enough attention from someone she loves, she might start to view that person as a stranger. If your once-loving partner withdraws from your touch and doesn't seem interested in making love, a possible reason could be that she's attention-starved and needs to reconnect with you.

Your spouse is less affectionate

Similar to not wanting to have s*x, a spouse who is less affectionate might be showing signs that he is seriously neglected in the attention department. In fact, a loss of affection can be a red flag that your partner has started to mentally and emotionally distance himself from you, which is difficult (although not impossible) to repair.

Your significant other is always nagging you

Does your spouse criticize you or continuously tell you what to do? She might feel as if she's on her own in your marriage and is searching for a way to gain control. If your spouse seems to be nagging more often than normal (we all nag a little from time to time), it might be that she's feeling alone and could use more positive couple time.

Your spouse looks different

New hair, makeup, outfits, or even a new fitness routine might be a sign that your spouse is vying for your attention. Take notice. Does your partner seem eager for you to praise his appearance, especially after a new haircut, clothes, or gym session? Chances are he's feeling insecure that his everyday appearance has caused you to turn away from him and he's searching for a way to reignite your interest.

Your spouse is passive-aggressive

Everyone's communication style differs, but when a spouse transitions from being confident and clear about her needs to making passive-aggressive digs that suggest she's unhappy, it's time to listen. Passive aggression is a symptom of hidden anger and is a sign your partner might be upset about the lack of attention, time, and affection she's getting from you.

Your spouse questions your every move

It's not uncommon for someone to feel threatened or distrustful when a spouse begins showing him less attention. Has your partner suddenly begun questioning your every move or looking over your shoulder when you're texting or communicating via social media? While distrustful behavior isn't healthy in any relationship, your spouse could be afraid you're giving your attention (and affection) to someone else.

Your significant other needs constant affirmation of your love

Does your spouse constantly ask you if you love her? Needing affirmation of your love and commitment might be a sign that she's feeling less confident about the status of your relationship. While it's healthy and normal to say "I love you," when a spouse needs to hear it constantly, or frequently wants you to describe why you love her, it's a red flag that she's feeling alone in the relationship.

Your spouse spends more time on the phone

Let's face it, modern couples tend to spend a lot more time on their devices than ever before. While relying on technology doesn't necessarily mean your partner is missing you, if your partner turns to his smartphone instead of you when he's got news to share or needs support, or if you're finding out about his day from his Facebook posts instead of in person, it's a clear sign he needs more one-on-one time with you.

Your partner stopped asking you for help

If your spouse no longer asks for you to help her with the chores, the kids, or daily tasks, there's a good chance it's because your attention has been elsewhere. Have you been too busy lately to contribute around the house or with the kids? Leaving all the family responsibilities to your partner might cause her to view you as an outsider who isn't a reliable source of support.

Your spouse seems to have given up trying

While expressing a lack of interest in things that once used to matter is a symptom of depression (and should be evaluated by a doctor), it could also be a sign that someone feels seriously neglected in his relationship and might be ready to call it quits. If your partner has stopped trying to engage with you or contribute to your lives together as a couple, it's important to find out why and, barring mental health issues, find a solution that likely includes spending more time together.

Your partner tries to overcompensate

While it might seem great to have a spouse that dotes on your every need, it's important to remember that our partners aren't our hired help and deserve to be nurtured and taken care of as well as they do for us. If your spouse seems overly focused on meeting your needs, it could be because he feels as if you wouldn't spend time with him otherwise. Are you giving him enough undivided attention that doesn't revolve around you? If not, it's time to start.

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Love Magazine: 18 Signs Your Spouse Needs More Attention
18 Signs Your Spouse Needs More Attention
Is your spouse giving you these telltale signs that they need more loving?
Love Magazine
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