5 Reasons Why Your Husband Is Always Angry Or Irritable With You

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There could be a lot of reasons behind your husband’s constant anger, and we’ll go into what they could be and how to work together to resolve them, if that’s something you want to work toward. 

It’s very important to note that, just because there could be some genuine reasons behind his actions, they are not justified and he still has to take some responsibility for his behavior.

Just because there is a reason for it, doesn’t mean you have to put up with it.

If his behavior is seriously affecting you or making you feel unsafe, there are places you can reach out to for more specific help.

You shouldn’t stay with someone who makes you feel unsafe, no matter what the reasons behind his actions.

But if your husband’s anger is something that you would like to work through, there are ways of trying.

Remember that he is accountable and is an adult, and you can ask for his cooperation in bettering himself.

Many of the causes of his anger will be coming from him and are very unlikely to be a result of you at all!

Most of our emotions come from ourselves and our projections of those feelings and how we see the world around us, so don’t blame yourself. 

Here are some reasons why he may be struggling, and some suggestions of how to move forwards together.

1. He has unresolved issues.

There’s a reason for the stereotype of therapists asking about your childhood…

So much of our behavior as adults stems from experiences we have in our younger life.

Anger in anyone can come from a huge range of issues during one’s childhood.

Maybe your husband was not treated well as a child.

Maybe he had to fight to make himself heard in a busy family home, which is why he now shouts. He’s trying to get his opinion across and is used to having to be very loud to do so! 

It could be that the only way to get attention as a child was for him to act out.

Well-behaved kids can sometimes get overlooked, and the ones who are naughty are given more attention (even if it’s bad attention).

Your husband may have experienced this when he was younger and now feels like lashing out is a way to get your attention – and maybe even your affection.

How to deal with this: it may feel impossible when your husband is in a bad mood, but communicating and being open is key.

When things are a bit calmer, you could try asking about his childhood or gently suggest that he gets angry as a habit, almost.

Be careful how you word this kind of thing as you don’t want to offend him or place the blame solely on him when he is feeling vulnerable and opening up to you.

That’s not to say that you should take the blame, but that you should try to be open-minded when he talks about past issues.

Remember that he is only human! He may have genuinely had a hard time as a kid, and may not have had access to therapy or mindfulness or had anyone to talk to to  process these feelings, which is why they affect his behavior today.

Being supportive through this reflective period will not only help your husband see and address his issues, it’ll bring you both closer together.

This will also help him see you as someone who is ‘safe’ and someone who he doesn’t need to get angry at.

You’ll seem less like a ‘threat’ or a reminder of his upsetting past.

2. Specific circumstances have triggered his anger.

This is something we need to bear in mind with everyone, so it definitely applies to angry husbands!

Sometimes, people do just have bad days.

These bad days can turn into bad weeks or months.

It’s often things that are outside of our control but affect and upset us.

He may be having a really hard time at work, or may be feeling bullied by his boss.

He might have had an argument with a friend or family member that’s still weighing on his mind.

He might be struggling with any of the huge number of things everyone else struggles with! 

How to deal with this: it’s important to take a step back and try to see the bigger picture.

He isn’t necessarily angry at you; he’s angry at the external factors in his life that are beyond his control.

Again, we’re not suggesting you take responsibility for his actions, but it could really help you to consider the circumstances in his life.

If you always feel like his anger is directed at you, or is due to you, you’re likely to respond in a defensive way.

Whilst this is totally normal, it may then fuel the fire and lead to more/worse arguments.

If you can step back and realize it’s not about you, you won’t be as defensive and he’ll have nothing to ‘fight back’ against, meaning the argument will diffuse more quickly and calmly.

3. He has low self-esteem.

Again, your husband is just another human being trying to navigate life!

It’s easy to stop seeing your partner as another person sometimes, and, as women, we often forget that men experience the same emotions we do.

We’re told by the media that women are much more emotional and that men just ‘get on with it.’

This makes it hard to remember that they also struggle with things like self-confidence, they worry about their appearance and friendships just as we do.

How many TV shows represent women crying over their bodies or diets? Pretty much all of them.

How many show men doing that? Exactly.

We forget that they experience the same issues as us, and these issues can often lead to outbursts of anger.

How to deal with this: if your partner is irritable and angry all the time, it could be because of low self-esteem.

He may be having a hard time and feeling like he doesn’t have much self-worth. That can make anybody upset and angry.

As mentioned above, media and entertainment rarely portray these experiences in men, so he may find it hard to realize what he’s actually feeling.

He might not feel comfortable talking about these kinds of issues with his friends, so is dealing with them alone.

When you feel bad about your body, for example, you only have to open Instagram to find a body-positive half-naked woman to inspire you, or you call a friend and share your feelings.

Many men don’t feel comfortable doing that kind of thing, so feel very isolated in their experiences of low self-esteem, hence it presents itself as anger.

Try to show compassion toward your partner. Remind him that you love him and find him attractive.

Over time, this should help build his confidence and ease his anger.

This article goes into more depth: 5 Things To Do If The Man You Love Has Low Self-Esteem (+ 6 Signs To Look For)

4. He has an anxiety and/or stress disorder.

As with the above, we don’t often see men experience mental health issues – but they do!

Things like meditation and mindfulness are often seen as ‘feminine’ or ‘hippy’ (which is also associated with women more than men for some reason!), and, as such, a lot of men dismiss them as valid tools.

It may be that your partner’s constant anger comes from a place of stress and anxiety.

They may seem pretty laid back at times, or unaffected by stress and able to compartmentalize and unwind easily, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t struggle. 

How to deal with this: if your husband is always angry at you, it might be that he’s feeling very anxious.

Emotions don’t always present as what they are…

Fear doesn’t mean that someone cowers in a corner; it could mean that they want to control everything and get very irritable.

Depression doesn’t mean that someone cries a lot; it could mean that they shout more.

Again, try to facilitate some really open conversations to see if this is an issue your partner is dealing with.

It may help if you open up and express your own stresses.

Letting your guard down and being vulnerable takes away the fear that often fuels anxiety, which, in turn, can alleviate some of the anger around it.

Your husband may always seem angry because he knows you love him and feels like it’s a ‘safe’ place to let out those vulnerabilities, even if they do manifest as anger rather than what you may think fear looks like.

Show your support, do your best to help, and you’ll start to see some changes in his behavior.

5. He has control issues.

Again, it’s key to note that, even if his behavior seems triggered by you or your actions, that it is not your fault.

A lot of people struggle with control issues, and they can cause a lot of anger.

It may be that he gets frustrated when things aren’t ‘just so,’ or that he likes things done his way.

This may make you feel rubbish, but try to remember that it’s not a reflection of you or your relationship.

It is him having issues that need to be addressed, and it can be hard to understand this.

Anger often manifests when we feel upset and irritated; when we can’t control things and we can’t switch off negative feelings.

Not being able to control things obviously makes us feel out of control, which makes us feel a bit helpless and angry.

How to deal with this: try to put yourself in his shoes.

If you constantly felt out of control, you would get pretty frustrated.

Nobody likes nasty things happening to them, and the inability to stop those things can feed into a control issue.

Again, this can cause a lot of problems within individuals that then spill into their relationships.

By understanding this, you’ll be able to show more compassion to your partner and will be more open to taking steps to help them.

Obviously, therapy can be incredibly helpful with these kinds of issues, but your partner may be upset if you suggest this straightaway!

Gently offer ways you can try to help.

That doesn’t mean that he gets to have total control over everything and that you can’t have your own way of doing some things.

But it does mean that you could try to compromise on issues that make him feel very out of control.

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So, these are 5 common reasons why your husband is always angry or annoyed at you.

They may not seem fully relevant straightaway, but, the more you think about them, the more valid they may become.

Try to be kind – everyone has their own problems and some of us are just better equipped to deal with them.

If your partner hasn’t had a supportive family or doesn’t have close friends or access to a support system, of course they’re feeling overwhelmed!

That’s not to justify their bad behavior, but it would explain why his fears, stresses, or lack of self-worth is now manifesting as anger.

He may be feeling very lonely and worried about his emotions, or may not know how to safely express his anxiety, and finds it easier to let it out through anger and shouting instead. 

When making any big changes in life or your mindset, try to keep some perspective.

It may feel like he’s always been this bad or you’ve always felt like you’re walking on eggshells.

Try to think this through – has it genuinely always been this way or does it just feel like that now?

That’s not saying you should dismiss your feelings; it’s just to try to help you rationalize them.

If it has been a consistent problem and you feel very stuck, consider seeking professional help, either for yourself as a way to cope or as a couple to work through his unresolved issues.

Still not sure what to do about your angry or irritable husband? Chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out (either by yourself or as a couple). Simply click here to chat.

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About Author

Lucy is a travel and wellness writer currently based in Gili Air, a tiny Indonesian island. After over a year of traveling, she’s settled in paradise and spends her days wandering around barefoot, practicing yoga and exploring new ways to work on her wellbeing.