What happens when your husband defends another woman? Does it mean he has broken your trust? Or could it be an indication that he’s cheating on you?
It can be further painful when your husband doesn’t defend you publicly or privately. After all, this is someone you call your better half, and defending your spouse is usually an unwritten rule that sets up expectations.
Unfortunately, some women are compelled to say, “my husband defends everyone but me,” or “my boyfriend defends his female friend.” Whether it’s your husband showing support for the other woman or your husband looking at another woman, you are not alone.
A man who doesn’t defend his woman may put her in an uncomfortable position that raises a lot of doubts in her mind. You begin to question his feelings for you, your role in the marriage, and the purpose of your marriage.
Should a husband defend his wife at all? Learn the answers in this relationship guide that will show you what to do when your husband defends other women, and learn to avoid making regrettable mistakes.
What does it mean when your husband defends another woman?
When your husband defends another woman, it can have different meanings or reasons. The first interpretation from a wife’s perspective might be that the husband supports the other woman because he’s having an affair with her.
For most women, this situation is quite confusing. It might look like you’re jealous of the other woman if you say something. If not, your husband might take this as a cue to keep standing up for other women and not realize that it’s bothering you.
Nevertheless, understand that when your husband doesn’t defend you, it doesn’t always mean that he wants to hurt you intentionally. Many situations of a husband looking at another woman might reveal that the action wasn’t intentional. Sometimes, these things happen.
Some men are unbiased, and they don’t mind showing it. For instance, when your husband defends another woman, it could be that he agrees with her opinion. Similarly, he might be of the opinion that defending your spouse all the time may not be right, especially if your partner’s stand isn’t correct.
Regardless, it can hurt a lot when a husband doesn’t defend his wife. And this can prompt many women to question, “Should a husband defend his wife? If he doesn’t, what should you do?”
The best response usually is to stay calm and reassess the situation.
It doesn’t always mean the marriage is unstable when a husband doesn’t defend his wife. If the other women that he defends include his mother, sisters, your mother, or your sisters, he may be just agreeing with their opinion to please them.
Indeed, it’s difficult for most wives to accept that their husbands will support another woman. However, defending your spouse does have its limits.
The truth can sometimes be bitter, and in a bid to make you understand, your husband might pick the side of another woman. Nevertheless, there are other reasons your husband defends another woman. These are:
1. He is naturally protective
“My husband never stands up for me.”
Many men might activate a protective instinct when they perceive other people like women and children as worth defending and protecting. So, in a certain situation where a husband defends another woman, his intention might be to “save” the other woman. And hurting his wife may not be something he anticipates.
A husband who doesn’t defend his wife may act that way because he usually supports all women.
When a husband doesn’t defend his wife, it could be that he is angry with his wife. His support for the other woman may indicate that he wants to hurt you back or get your attention.
4. He doesn’t respect you
If your worry is, “My husband defends everyone but me,” his behavior seems worthy of reproach. The behavior shows absolute disrespect.
It would help if people didn’t argue with their partners in public, let alone defend others against their partners in front of others. While there are moments when your opinions differ, wisdom lies in knowing when to keep quiet instead of not supporting your wife.
How to stay calm when your husband supports another woman?
First, staying calm is your best shot at winning this fight. How?
Try not to overreact when you see him defending another woman against you. Instead, try to understand his perspective by asking the following questions:
Could the other woman’s opinion be correct?
Are you the wrong one here?
How did your husband defend her?
Was there any other sign to indicate your husband’s action was intentional?
Has your husband been defending others against you consistently?
The above questions will teach you how to deal with a husband defending other women or a husband looking at another woman. Check the answers to the following to decide on what things to do when your husband defends another woman.
15 things to do if your husband defends another woman
It’s normal to feel betrayed when your husband doesn’t defend you. It can make you question aspects of your relationship and whether your man is truly committed to you. However, you will handle the situation like a pro if you follow the tips below:
1. Control yourself
Seeing your husband coming to another person’s rescue over you is frustrating, but you must control your anger. There is usually a reason behind people’s actions, but jumping to conclusions will escalate the issue, instead of giving you a chance to understand the situation better.
Give your husband the chance to explain himself before you accuse him of cheating or disrespecting you.
2. Pick the right time for discussion
Time is essential when your husband supports the other women.
The wrong time to make your husband know he is defending other women will be in the heat of the argument or in the presence of the other women. Rather, pick a time when you both are calm and in a stable state of mind.
3. Communicate your feelings
Now may not be the time to suppress your feelings and deal with your husband in a passive-aggressive manner. It won’t solve the issue or make you feel better. It might even lead to a more damaging conflict.
Instead, tell him how his actions make you feel as soon as possible.
Remember, the goal is not to make your husband look weak or appear like a victim. You want to know your husband’s reasons for defending another person against you. Therefore, you must make him comfortable to get to the truth.
For example, start the conversation casually or when you are both laughing. That may put him at ease and open to telling you the truth.
5. Take an objective look at the situation
It is crucial to take an unbiased view of the situation. Try to see things from a different perspective to understand why your husband defends other women.
Is he justified in defending her?
Does your husband have noble intentions when he is defending her?
Is your interpretation of the situation correct?
Regardless of who the woman is, if defending her appears like the right thing to do, you should cut him some slack. If he only supports others occasionally, you can consider letting it go.
When your husband explains himself, try to put yourself in his shoes to understand his position. But this doesn’t mean supporting him at all costs.
Instead, try to understand his motive for standing behind the other lady. Understanding is vital to a healthy and successful marriage.
7. Let him know your other concerns
When your husband defends another woman, your reaction might be justified if you have noticed other suspicious behavior from your husband. Even if your husband can justify his action, you may not be able to believe him in these situations.
So, let him know the other things you have noticed. For example, if he has been defending others repeatedly or supporting a particular woman all the time.
8. Check how he defends other women
Sometimes, it’s not what your husband says but how he says it.
Suppose you aren’t convinced with your husband’s explanation, observe how he defends the other woman. If your husband agrees with her and gives justifiable reasons for doing so, it’s okay. However, it calls for concern if he defends others without wanting to hear your side or explain his reasons.
Your husband’s relationship with his mother will be different from his sisters or female co-workers.
If your husband doesn’t defend you but supports his mother, it might be that he wants his mother to feel accepted and loved.
10. Ask him what he thinks about you
Criticisms make us better in many ways. Ask your husband to give his opinions about why he doesn’t agree with you.
Do you overreact or say things without a factual basis? Do you argue blindly or don’t see things from an objective point of view? Hearing the truth might hurt initially, but it may help you become a better person.
11. Be a good listener
You must activate your active listening when your husband talks. Try to not interrupt him when he speaks; listen to understand, but not judge. Ask questions for clarifications, and don’t make any assumptions.
Learn how to listen to people with the help of this video by Jordan Peterson:
12. See if it is a particular woman
If your husband defends a particular woman and claims they are friends, ensure he is right. This doesn’t mean you don’t trust your partner. However, it can be worth investigating their relationship if he defends her at every chance he gets without listening to you.
13. Check if he has feelings for her
Besides typical conversations, if your husband talks to the other woman, texts, or visits her frequently, he may have feelings for her. That may explain why he naturally comes to her rescue when you argue.
When your husband defends another woman, try to compare it to how he defends you. Is it the same way he defends another woman?
How your husband protects you can give you an insight into his feelings for you. Support for the other woman may mean nothing as long as he loves and cares for you.
15. Seek professional help
If your husband’s action causes you distress, it may be best to seek professional help. For example, a marriage counselor can guide how to deal with the situation.
Counselors are highly skilled in helping spouses openly discuss marital issues. They can also show you how to improve your communication with your spouse.
It can be emotionally taxing when your husband defends another woman in your presence. Your first reaction might be to flare up, but you must remain calm. Engage him in a thoughtful conversation so that you can know the real reason behind his actions.
You should also watch out for other signals and let him know if something is bothering you. If nothing changes in your husband’s actions even after that, it might be best to talk to a professional.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.