Marriage is all about equal partnership. Sometimes you even put your spouse before you because this little act of love fosters trust, amiability, and contentment. However, it can get frustrating if you live with a selfish husband who has a constant disregard for others and their wishes.

A husband who puts himself and his needs over everyone and everything else can be a nightmare to live with. It’s all about their feelings and their own needs. In addition to that, you may even start resenting your self-absorbed and self-centered husband soon if he doesn’t mend his ways. This may spell trouble for your marriage

To prove the above-mentioned point, let’s take a look at a study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family. It was found that couples in which one partner exhibited high levels of selfishness were more likely to experience marital conflict and lower relationship satisfaction than couples in which both partners exhibited low levels of selfishness. 

Now, having a selfish spouse as a life partner may be distressing, but the topic must be approached with an open mind. Pointing fingers and arguments will not solve your problem, but a calculated, well-thought out approach may help your selfish man realize his mistake and improve your relationship.

Is It Normal To Be Selfish In A Marriage? 

When you have a selfish husband, everything about your marriage will become about him. Now, is that normal? The answer depends on the degree and circumstances in which your husband shows selfishness in marriage. 

For example:

  • Scenario 1 – Your husband has a deadline at work but you want to go out for dinner. In this case, his selfishness to stay back and finish his work is absolutely justified. As much as he loves you, he can’t put his career at risk 
  • Scenario 2 – Your husband is busy playing video games but you want to go out on a dinner date. When he refuses to grant your tiny wish and still goes on to play video games with his gaming buddies, it simply means your husband doesn’t want to do anything to make you feel good. It is selfish behavior on your husband’s part

If you consider scenario 1, your husband has priortized his work over your need, which is essentially crucial. It might also be short-term, like over month-ends, my husband has official ledgers to be closed and often works late for that week. I have to step up with the kids and the household chores because I know and understand his commitment to his work.

On the other hand, if selfishness is his inherent trait, he would just keep lounging while I would struggle with the responsibilities of our married life. That would have been unacceptable.

Why Is Your Husband Selfish?

The basic ideology behind selfishness is to care for yourself over the needs of others. It’s all about what you want and getting it all without giving anything in return. But what exactly could the reason be behind him being such an inconsiderate husband? Here are some answers:

  • Being an only child: Such children are the apple of their parents’ eyes. They are their whole world and they get everything at the blink of an eye. Such kids exhibit self-centered tendencies which manifest into selfishness as they grow up. They unintentionally start thinking that they deserve this special treatment from everyone in the world.
  • Cultural impact: Culture is one of the most dominating factors in everyone’s lives at the moment. If your husband was raised in an Italian or an Indian home, it’s clear why they are selfish. Italians and Indians give extra care to their sons. They aren’t allowed to do any chores. Whereas, the opposite treatment is given to their daughters. They are supposed to know how to clean and cook. Similarly, if your husband was raised in a culture where male domination was more prevalent, it’s one of the answers to your question “Why my husband only cares about himself?”
  • Past trauma: If someone took your husband for granted in their previous relationships, it’s obvious why they have a selfish personality. They are just trying to protecting themselves now after getting a heartbreak inspite of being giving
  • Controlling nature: Some people inherently have a controlling nature where they want everything under their control. Such people have narcissist tendencies and think of it below their level to care for others. They want everyone around them to live as they desire and everything to function as they want

As mentioned previously, marriage works when both the partners let go of their selfishness to accommodate their partner’s needs once in a while. But if your husband is adamant and refuses to bend the knee, it is not normal selfish behavior. 

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Top 13 Signs You Have A Selfish Husband 

Being selfish in marriage is just unacceptable. You can’t just think about yourself and expect your partner to be okay with it because partners are supposed to offer stability and security to each other by prioritizing one another’s needs and wishes.

When one of them becomes a selfish person, it can become a serious problem down the road. If you don’t know what selfish behavior looks like, here are the top 13 signs of a selfish husband:

1. He takes all the decisions by himself 

One of the top signs of an uncaring husband is when he makes all the decisions by himself. This kind of selfishness can make you feel worthless. As if you are just an object in his life. He doesn’t care about your thoughts, opinions, and judgments. Everything is about him, for him, and to him. 

When someone posted on Reddit saying, “My partner makes big decisions without me”, a a user replied, “If your husband gets upset when you disagree, if he gives ultimatums, or if he makes you feel dumb, thoughtless, selfish, or guilty for just putting out your thoughts and they don’t match with his perspective, you are in an emotionally abusive relationship.”

A selfish partner asserts his dominance y making decisions for the both of you. Your opinions do not matter, nor does he care about what you feel. This way not only does he disrespect you, but also your relationship.

2. He isn’t grateful 

A great deal of research has shown that gratitude helps partners to initiate, maintain, and strengthen relationships. Gratitude also brings romantic partners closer together and provides more satisfaction.

It has even shown that expressing gratitude releases oxytocin or the “love hormone” which builds a greater connection and bond between two people 

Your husband needs to be thankful for everything you do in your capacity to keep him happy. Such romantic gestures keep the relationship alive. He can show you his gratitude by takigyou on romantic dates, buying you presents, holding hands in public or by simply dropping a “Thank You” when you do something for him.

On the other hand, one of the signs of a bad husband is when he doesn’t share compliments out loud. If he thinks what you do is your “job”, it means he is taking you for granted. A characteristic of selfish people is that they think very highly of themselves, undermining each and everyone.

3. He doesn’t appreciate you 

Every woman wants to feel appreciated by their husbands. A wife puts in a lot of effort to run the house, taking care of the needs of each family member.

But when your husband doesn’t acknowledge your hard work and chooses to brag only about his efforts and sacrifices he has made for this relationship, it means your husband’s selfishness has blinded him from seeing your sweats and tears.

Here are some things you can do to stay positive and make your marriage work when your husband doesn’t want to appreciate you:

  • Try to appreciate him. Give him the energy you are seeking from him
  • Express gratitude. If your husband has gone inside his man cave and refuses to come out, show him you are content with him
  • Make yourself a priority by practicing self-care tips

4. He prioritizes himself

If his family, friends, and leisure time/activities, and all his different hobbies come before you, it’s one of the signs of a selfish husband. His own needs come before yours and that’s a difficult situation to be in. It should never be that way.

When someone loves you, they will prioritize you over anything else unless it’s important work or a family emergency. Ditching you to spend time with his friends should never be an excuse to make you feel unloved and unwanted. 

5. He doesn’t accept his mistakes 

Kayla, a 35-year-old nurse from Ohio, says, “My husband only cares about himself and never cares about me. He never accepts his mistakes. I am the one who always apologizes regardless of whose fault it is. I know this is one of the biggest selfish husband signs. I am on the brink of losing my self-esteem.” 

Accepting mistakes and taking accountability are important steps in interpersonal relationships. It also helps build trust and respect with your significant other. When your husband doesn’t shoulder responsibilities for his actions, it means he isn’t showing willingness to learn from his mistakes. He is looking to blameshift.

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6. He doesn’t care about your goals and ambitions

When your husband makes everything about himself, you are not in a healthy marriage. This is one of the biggest red flags of a person’s character. They will show zero interest in your work, career goals, and dreams especially when you have supported them throughout their ups and downs. Your struggles are absolutely nothing in front of his problems. 

Marriage works only when both the partners grow and glow together. If one partner is struggling, the other one is supposed to become their pillar of strength and pull them up instead of pushing them down. If this is lacking in your relationship, it means he doesn’t care about your well-being. 

7. He lacks empathy 

Research has shown that when a husband lacks empathy, it can have a significant negative impact on the marriage and the emotional well-being of both partners. Furthermore, it can lead to:

  • Increased conflicts
  • Decreased relationship satisfaction 
  • A lack of intellectual, physical, and emotional intimacy 

Dealing with a selfish husband who lacks empathy can become extremely distressing because he will never be able to look at things from your perspective. It simply means he is not ready to look into your feelings and consider them even for a moment. 

8. He doesn’t compromise 

Janet, a 28-year-old journalist from New York, says, “My husband is only nice when he wants something from me. He has never compromised on anything. Be it restaurants for dinner dates or holiday destinations. I am always the one who has to compromise. He was a selfish husband during pregnancy as well. I feel like I am sacrificing a lot.”

It’s one thing to compromise in a marriage but it’s not right when he is adamant about getting everything he wants. A good man will never make you feel like you have to take all the burden of compromising. He is selfish in marriage when it starts to feel like a sacrifice. 

9. He is emotionally distant 

Research has shown that emotionally unavailable men often have attachment issues which stems from their childhood experiences such as neglect from their parents or trauma. This can lead to difficulty in forming and maintaining intimate relationships. 

If your spouse is emotionally distant and doesn’t like to tell you what he is feeling, it means he has an avoidant behavior and thinks he is entitled to his feelings and doesn’t want to let anyone in. He needs to be more open if you want this marriage to survive. Tell him he can trust you and you won’t let him down. 

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10. He expects you to read his mind 

Following on from the previous point, when a selfish husband is emotionally distant, he automatically expects you to read his mind. This is also known as “withdrawal”. Your husband won’t share how he is feeling but he will expect you to know he is not in a good mood. This is a problem because it can lead to problems like:

  • Misunderstandings 
  • Disappointments 
  • Conflicts
  • Resentment

If you are saying, “My husband makes everything about himself because I am not able to read his mind”, then it’s a toxic marriage. You can’t ever understand what someone wants unless they state it clearly from their mouth. 

Dealing with a selfish husband

11. He does nothing to make you happy 

An inconsiderate husband would do nothing to make you happy. When was the last time your loving husband bought your flowers? You don’t even remember what it feels like to be surprised.

Your happiness comes last. All acts of love and attempts to make you special have gone down the drain.

You don’t even remember the last time the two of you spent some quality time together and you haven’t received any gifts from your husband. Tapping into love languages has ceased and he doesn’t make any kind of effort to make you feel special. These things should never happen more than once in any healthy and loving relationship. 

12. He is selfish in bed 

Sex should be pleasurable for both partners. But if you are doing all the work and he is just enjoying it without making sure you reach gratification as well, it’s one of the signs you have an ungrateful husband. This is peak selfishness in marriage that needs to be sorted if you want this marriage to last. 

Moreover, a selfish husband would expect sex on demand, without considering your mood.

If you are saying, “My husband is selfish in bed”, then a Reddit user shares how you can make him see the other side of things, “I’m a straight guy and I hate it when I hear about selfish men in bed. We all know women take longer than men to orgasm, that’s not your fault. Maybe you should reject him for sex once in a while and say you don’t feel up to it. Sex is all about communication and being honest and open with each other.” 

13. He has NPD 

Research has found that all kinds of narcissists are selfish. They crave the respect and admiration from others. They want to be worshiped. Everything that happens must revolve around them. It’s always about their demands, their lifestyle, and their ways.

When you oppose them or do something that goes against their opinion, they will try to punish you by stonewalling you. 

Are your wondering? Is my husband a narcissist or just selfish? Neither of these things are good. Being selfish once or twice isn’t a big deal.

Constant selfish behavior is worrisome and it’s one of the top signs of a toxic narcissistic partner who wants everyone to accommodate to his ways. If this isn’t dealt with right away, you will have to say goodbye to your individuality, likes, and wants. 

signs of an uncaring husband

5 Practical Ways To Deal With A Selfish Husband 

Dealing with a selfish husband can be a challenging and complex task, but there are small things you can do to make him understand how his attitude isn’t just affecting you but it is also affecting your friends and family. Healthy relationships are often a two-way street. Here are some suggestions:

1. Communicate your feelings 

It is important for you to communicate with your spouse when he is being selfish. Deal with a selfish husband using the following tips:

  •  Use a clear and non-accusatory manner
  • Use “I” statements to express how his behavior is affecting you
  • Try to listen to his perspective as well
  • Don’t yell, hurl abuses, or use derogatory statements 
  • No name-calling and no giving ultimatums either

2. Set boundaries

If you are saying, “My husband does whatever he wants”, you need to draw some line. Establish clear boundaries around what is acceptable behavior and what is not. Be assertive about your needs. State clearly what you will endure and what won’t be tolerated even for a second. 

A good way to assess your relationship health is to schedule check-in questions, every few days or weeks.

3. Practice self-care

Take care of yourself and prioritize your own well-being. Make time for activities that bring you joy and help you relax. Cultivate different hobbies that you enjoy as these will help you ease and relax your mind. Some other self-care tips include:

  • Journal your negative thoughts
  • Meditate for at least 30 minutes a day 
  • Eat healthy 
  • Get enough sleep
  • Spend time in nature 

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4. Seek professional help 

Consider seeking the help of a therapist or counselor to work through the underlying issues in your relationship and develop strategies for managing your husband’s selfishness.

5. Consider consequences

Consider the consequences of your husband’s selfish behavior and communicate these consequences to him in a non-threatening manner. Tell him you understand that this behavior stems deep but you can’t be at the receiving end of this forever. 

When you deal with a selfish husband, it can be a complex and difficult task. It may take time and effort to see even minute changes. Having a selfish husband can take a toll on your married life. You have to be patient with him, while also save your relationship. Meanwhile, you need to prioritize your own well-being and seek support when needed.