Unintentional hurt can happen in every relationship, leaving emotional scars that aren’t necessarily visible right away. For the sake of promoting healthy communication and healing, it is essential to recognize the signs that you really hurt him. Men do not express their feelings openly due to various reasons, like societal pressure, cultural norms, and many more.

From a very young age, men are taught not to show their vulnerability. In a survey, it was shown that 77% of men have suffered with mental health issues in silence. Men might not express their emotions the way women do, but they surely show behavioral changes when hurt1.

It is now time for you to explore the indications that he is hurt and what you should do to make things right!

How Do You Know You Really Hurt Him- 17 Subtle Signs

Healthy relationships require that we comprehend how our actions hurt the people we care about emotionally. Sometimes the extent of our emotional hurt doesn’t become immediately apparent. The “17 Subtle Signs You Really Hurt Him” are discussed in this article to help you figure out when you’ve actually wounded someone.

You can take proactive measures to address the problem, provide a real apology, and seek to mend and enhance your relationship by being aware of these subliminal indicators. Following are some key points to shed light on the fact that he is seriously hurt.

1. He has withdrawn himself

When someone withdraws, they put emotional and physical distance between themselves and their partner. Conversations that were once friendly and interesting turn cold and distant, denoting the telltale signs you hurt his pride. This withdrawal is an indication of needing some distance and a defense strategy to prevent additional emotional trauma. 

The emotional intimacy and connection of the relationship may be at risk if the person withdraws into their own thoughts and emotions. It’s important to acknowledge this emotional withdrawal and indifference since it calls for honest discussion and efforts to mend the emotional wounds that have led to this retreat.

  • He shows little or no interest in spending quality time together
  • He does not reply to your texts or answer your calls
  • He is often making excuses to be with you

2. He gets irritated about small things

Increased irritation can be a subtle but important symptom that someone is experiencing as emotional suffering, according to this study. It shows how they struggle to deal with anger and irritation.

Once-tolerable minor irritations can suddenly result in explosive wrath or resentment. They react more sensitively to stressors as a result of their irritability, which frequently results from a feeling of vulnerability and mental upheaval. It’s important to recognize this symptom since it presents a chance for sympathetic support and dialogue.

  • When they do not want to discuss about their whereabouts with you and are repeatedly asked about it, they get angry or pissed
  • Your partner appears cranky and irked over small or random incidents
  • He shows increased sensitivity to small issues
  • He gets angry easily and lashes out at you for small things

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3. He doesn’t maintain eye contact anymore

Among all the signs that you really hurt him and that he is upset, avoiding eye contact communicates a resistance to connecting on a more emotional level. A partner who once looked into your eyes with warmth and connection may now avoid your gaze if they are feeling hurt, uncomfortable, or insecure. You should know that it’s essential to respect your guy’s feelings and put him at ease. 

A demand for privacy or a barrier to talking about delicate subjects, this disengagement from eye contact can appear as a defense against vulnerability. Understanding this transition is crucial for starting compassionate conversations and dealing with the underlying emotional distress.

4. He has developed closed-off body language

Indicators of emotional distress and separation are frequently subtle but potent when someone’s body language becomes locked off. This is a clear sign that you really hurt him and need to do something ASAP.

When a partner’s body language in a relationship changes from open and inviting to closed and protective, it may indicate hurt feelings, mistrust, or a desire to put emotional distance between you. These nonverbal indicators express a need for privacy and safeguards against additional emotional injury.

  • Crossed arms, sparse eye contact, a turned-away stance, and distancing movements are all examples of closed-off body language
  • If you find him rubbing his neck more often when talking, it can mean he is getting uncomfortable around you
  • Additionally, if you find him rolling his eyes when you try to talk to him, it can indicate that he is not interested or is getting annoyed
closed-off body language is a sign you hurt him
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5. Signs of sarcasm and passive aggression

When someone uses sarcasm or passive aggression, it shows that they find it difficult to express how wounded they are, and it is one of the signs you have hurt his pride. These covert means of expression may serve as a defensive mechanism to hide their weakness.

If your partner starts employing sarcasm or making passive-aggressive digs, it could be a sign of unresolved issues, frustrations, or unmet needs.

  • If you find your partner taunting you for something from the past, it can be one of the ways that he is trying to emotionally hurt you as a defense mechanism
  • When your partner mentions the fight and the hurtful words you said in a sarcastic joke,
  • If you find him talking about just an ex or your previous romantic relationship in a sarcastic way, it can be a telltale sign you have hurt his feelings

6. When you experience a loss of intimacy from his side

As it is said – when you work on strengthening your relationship, spending quality time together is essential. The closeness between the two of you helps in building trust and understanding each other better.

Significant loss of emotional and physical intimacy in a relationship is frequently a sign of deeper emotional suffering. Losing intimacy and affection can be a subtly powerful symptom of emotional hurt.

A spouse with whom you once enjoyed warmth and closeness may stop giving you hugs, kisses, and cuddles. There may be a decline in emotional intimacy as well, with less deep discussions and shared vulnerabilities. Such a case is a hidden cry for healing deep emotional traumas. Know that everyone goes through such a hard time and that you aren’t alone in this.

  • You find him not being comfortable with eye contacts, hugging and other non-sexual actions of love and care
  • He doesn’t care about your problems and stops giving you psychological support
  • Signs like him not being comfortable with physical intimacy or avoiding getting close to you shows that he has a lot on his mind, other than you

Read This: 17 Signs Your Husband Doesn’t Not Find You Attractive – With Crucial Tips On What To Do

7. He is showing escapist behavior

In a relationship2, escapist tendencies frequently indicate unresolved emotional anguish or discomfort. When one spouse indulges in escapism, they avoid facing their emotions or relationship problems by hiding behind distractions like jobs, hobbies, or excessive screen time. This behavior denotes an unwillingness to have emotional conversations or confront unaddressed hurt. 

It could result in emotional separation and a sense of alienation. Thus, it is essential to look closely for the obvious signs you really hurt him and start working on improving yourself.

  • When you find that he loses himself in his work or hobbies which is unusual, it can mean that he is avoiding you
  • Also, if you see that he sticks his eyes to the laptop screen when you talk to him,it can mean he is trying to avoid conversations

8. He is withdrawing from social activities 

It’s a subtle but important sign you really hurt him when someone withdraws from social activities they once enjoyed in a partnership. In order to maintain emotional distance and shield inner self from further harm, disengagement is frequently attempted. It denotes their need for seclusion or isolation to deal with unsolved problems or deep feelings. Look out for such signs a guy is hurting inside and resolve the issues.

  • If he refuses to go out on outings that you both once enjoyed, it is a sure sign that he is taking some time off from the relationship
  • When you find them avoiding you in gatherings, it can mean that they are still in the process of healing the wound you created

9. He is not returning your calls or texts

It might be a subtle but a potent sign you really hurt him and that he is going through an emotional turmoil when a guy ignores your calls and/or messages. This change in communication styles denotes a widening emotional gulf or unhealed hurt as per research.

They may purposefully make a space for themselves to express their discontent or analyse their emotions. Men pulling away illustrates their desire for privacy and their unwillingness to have potentially upsetting dialogues, atleast for the time-being

  • They might be seeing your texts but not caring to reply 
  • While he doesn’t reply to your texts or calls, he might have attempted several drunk calls and he might be getting emotional
  • There can be chances that they have blocked you and do not want to talk for the time being. If it is so do not rush it, wait patiently for him to get back to you
He is not answering your calls
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10. He spends more time with family and friends over you

Spending extra time with family members and friends on a regular basis over their partner might be a subtle but revealing signs you really hurt him and they are looking for disconnection. It means that they look to people outside of the partnership for comfort or support. 

The change in the person’s preferences to spend time may indicate unresolved problems or discontent within the couple. Also, he might go for rebound relationship to search for the peace he was expecting with you. Their need for emotional solace or a strategy to avoid facing unsolved issues may be the root of their need to be among loved ones.

Related Reading: 15 Agonizing Signs The Relationship Is Over For Him 

11. He has become hyper-sensitive

Among others, him becoming over-sensitive comes under signs you really hurt him. In a relationship, someone who becomes more sensitive than usual frequently masks emotional suffering.

Increased sensitivity can take the form of having hard feelings about things that appear insignificant or having strong emotional reactions to situations that didn’t previously touch them as much. 

This nonverbal indication of underlying insecurity proves that they feel pain because of your actions. They can still be dealing with mental scars that make them more prone to triggers. They might have even completely stopped dating but do not lose hope. The no contact rule can work for the better.

He is being oversensitive
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12. He has gone back to his old negative habits

Reverting to old, potentially bad habits in a relationship is frequently an indication of underlying unresolved issues or emotional anguish. It is common for people to revert to these behaviors in an effort to deal with or numb emotional suffering. It implies that the connection can be causing frustration or the reopening of previous scars. So, it is essential to look out for the signs you hurt his pride.

  • If he has again started drinking excessively or smoking unlike when you two were in a relationship, it can mean he is looking for some kind of escape from the emotional trauma
  • Also, signs like going back to participating in activities to pass time can be a signs you really hurt him and he is ignoring your presence
  • If you see him obsessing over parties and spending most of his time in clubs, it is a sure sign he is getting himself wasted because of the hurt

13. He is posting depressed posts on social media

It’s frequently a painful indication of their own emotional battle when someone starts publishing depressing posts on social media. These social media posts act as a subtly effective call for support, understanding, or attention.

You can clearly say that these are signs you really hurt him. They suggest that the person might be dealing with stress, dissatisfaction, or unresolved emotional suffering in real life. Such outward displays of melancholy reveal a desire for empathy and connection. 

14. He is furious at you

Being angry in a relationship is one of the clear signs you really hurt him and about their extreme unhappiness. They may act aggressively, shout, talk badly or have violent outbursts as a result of their rage irrespective of your relationship with them. This rage frequently masks underlying own feelings of annoyance, betrayal, or emotional suffering.

It is an emotional response to unfulfilled demands or unresolved relationship issues. Understanding their rage is essential because it emphasises the need for honest and open communication. We suggest find time for regular relationship check-ins to have a better understanding of each others’ expectations and disappointments.

  • When he gets angry at you for trivial things and talks pretty badly it can mean that they are not ready to talk and need some time off
  • He might be lashing out at you when you ask for his time and attention. But it is quite natural that he hasn’t healed from your words or wounds so give him some time

15. He has stopped complimenting or appreciating you

When your partner stops complimenting you or expressing gratitude, it’s a clear indication that things are getting tense in your relationship. The lack of these encouraging statements suggests that the emotional connection may be deteriorating. It might be an expression of emotional hurt, bitterness, or discontent. Your partner may be reluctant to compliment you because of unresolved conflicts or a feeling of disconnection. 

  • If your partner is someone who is quite expressive and loves complimenting you every now and then but has stopped doing that after the fight, it is one of the most obvious signs you really hurt him and he will need time
  • If he used to greet you with morning and night texts but has stopped doing so, it means he is not yet ready to make things normal
Signs of indifference in relationships

16. You can say his smile has turned fake

Your ex-boyfriend’s forced or fake smile or lack of genuine warmth in a relationship are blatant signs of underlying unhappiness and that he is upset. A once-sincere smile could now come out as forced or artificial, hiding their genuine emotions. 

It’s quite obvious that it will affect your dating life and their altered behavior is a reflection of their internal turmoil, which may be brought on by unresolved concerns, by being emotionally hurt, or unhappiness. A forced grin is frequently a defensive tactic used to mask vulnerability. Take these signs you really hurt him seriously and work on them.

17. He hardly makes conversations with you

When someone in a relationship drastically limits their conversational participation, it can be one of the powerful signs you really hurt him and the underlying problems. They might become more reserved, responding very briefly or starting discussions less frequently. 

This shift may be an indication of emotional distance, unsolved issues, or unspoken hurt. It may indicate a reluctance to have uncomfortable conversations that are meaningful. Understanding this shift is essential because it highlights the value of honest, compassionate communication.

5 Things To Do After You Hurt Him Badly

It can be a really difficult situation in a relationship when you have emotionally injured someone who cares a lot about you. It is essential to keep in mind that healing is possible, despite the grief and harm your actions might seem to have inflicted. Following are steps you should consider with sincerity and dedication to reconcile when you have got the signs you really hurt him:

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1. Apologize with sincerity

The first and most important step in mending a relationship after deeply hurting someone is to apologise once you realize the signs you broke his heart. Start by owning up to your mistakes and accepting full responsibility for the own suffering you’ve caused.

Offer a genuine apology that conveys regret rather than making excuses or assigning blame. Express your regret and understanding of his true feelings in plain, sympathetic language. Remember that apologizing holds enough power to make things better.

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2. Listen actively

Active listening entails paying close attention to your partner and sincerely attempting to comprehend their viewpoint and pure desire. Refrain from interjecting or defending yourself. If he is going through tough time personally or professionally, offer encouragement and support. Be his pillar of strength.

Instead, provide an environment where they feel free to openly share negative emotions and worries. Even if it’s unpleasant to hear, demonstrate empathy by acknowledging their suffering and validating their hurt feelings.

3. Make the necessary adjustments

After creating serious harm to your partner, mending the connection requires making reparations. Remember that they are also human beings and it’s normal for them to react that way. It entails taking specific steps to make things right and stop the unpleasant behavior from happening again.

Start by addressing how you can make things right with the person you have offended and here self-improvement is the key. The goal is to show that you are committed to making things better and to making sure that your words and deeds are consistent. 

4. Give him some alone time

Once you have got the important signs you really hurt him, recognise that healing takes time and that they might need some space to think about and come to grips with what has happened. Never put pressure on them to forget or move on right away because doing so can impede the healing process and affect their already low self-esteem.

Instead, reassure them of your dedication to make amends and give them the freedom to decide when they’re prepared to start new conversations or reestablish trust. As you strive to mend the connection during this phase, patience and understanding are crucial.

5. Rebuild trust

After understanding the signs you really hurt him, restoring trust requires persistent dedication and perseverance. It entails being consistently trustworthy, being upfront and transparent, and respecting limits. Recognize your past errors, accept responsibility, and make an effort to better yourself.

Be compassionate and give yourself time to recover, keeping in mind that building trust takes time. To show that you’re serious about the change, keep your word and prioritize it.

Key Takeaways

  • Open and honest conversation is the foundation of getting over a mistake and making amends 
  • Make a space where your partner can talk about their bad feelings and worries without feeling judged
  • Be patient with your partner while they process their emotions and try not to rush the process

The first step in recovering from relationship damage and making reconciliation is understanding the subtle signs you really hurt him and the emotional suffering. These signs that a guy is heartbroken can help you improve things between you two. Make a heartfelt apology and accept full responsibility for your actions to start the healing process. The importance of active listening and empathy cannot be overstated. 

Make specific modifications to your behavior and actions to show you’re sorry. Work together with your spouse to find answers, and reach out to your family therapist or a licensed professional counselor, if needed. Make sure they feel safe in the relationship by respecting their boundaries. The key is consistency; demonstrate your commitment to improving yourself as a spouse and person through your actions.


1. How do guys act when they are hurt?

When men are hurt, they tend to exhibit emotional detachment or make an effort to conceal their suffering or the fact that they are emotionally hurt. In addition, they can also grow distant, reserved, or hostile while disguising their vulnerability with stoicism. These are quite essential signs a guy is heartbroken so, make sure you look out for them.

As a coping mechanism, some people may express their hurt emotionally through anger or irritation. It’s crucial to keep in mind that everyone reacts to emotional pain differently, and that these behaviors are not just reserved for guys. Understanding the signs you really hurt him and assisting them through this can be made easier through communication and empathy.

2. Can a relationship go back to normal after I have hurt him?

Well, it is quite a subjective matter that depends on the severity of the hurt you’ve caused, the willingness of both the parties to communicate and whether or not you two are committed to rebuilding trust. In addition, the faster you realize the signs you really hurt him, the better it is. Time, empathy, and open and honest discussions can help mend the harm, but normally might change into a stronger dynamic based on mutual understanding and development.