Does The Gray Rock Technique Work In An Abusive Relationship? | What To Do When Gray Rock Doesn’t Work?

Last Update on September 23, 2022 : Published on September 24, 2022
how Does the grey rock technique work in an abusive relationship

Have you ever argued with someone and you were tired of giving the other person an explanation so you simply decided to just nod your head or agree to all the allegations they put on you? If yes, you have gray-rocked a person.

The gray rock technique might sound simple when you read out it but let’s be honest here, it has a moderate to high difficulty level.

Not everyone can successfully perform the gray rock technique. When you begin gray rocking your abuser you will succeed a few times but mostly fail. The trick to making the gray rock technique a success is to be patient and consistent.

The gray rock method can be used in different situations with different kinds of people. You can use the gray rock method to deal with toxic people, you can use it for narcissistic people in your life, etc. today, we will see how you can use the gray rock method in an abusive relationship and what can you do if the gray rock method doesn’t work.

Let’s begin with the basics…

What is The Gray Rock Technique?

The gray rock technique requires you to ignore all emotional stimulations, and become rather unresponsive towards the other person. When you gray rock a person you are trying not to give the other person the emotional response they want from you.

For example, your toxic ex constantly calls you a bad person and when you fight back, you’re giving into their trap. In the same situation if you just keep quiet or simply say ‘Ok’, they will have nothing to pick on and eventually will stop coming after you.

When you gray rock someone, that person gets bored of you and stops troubling you. You wonder why and how they get bored. Well, if they will not get the response they want from you (an emotional reaction or an outburst) why will they keep coming after you? They will go to someone who responds to them.

Gray Rock Technique Examples

  • Giving one-word answers
  • Giving short and noncommittal replies
  • Making least interactions and keeping them short
  • Avoiding conflict at any cost, no arguments, no matter how provoked you are
  • Have an emotionally numb response/reaction
  • Reduced the amount of time you spend with them
  • Minimizing contact, quick calls, and messaging only when required

How Does The Gray Rock Technique Work In An Abusive Relationship?

If you are someone who has had an abusive partner or is in an abusive relationship (emotional abuse) for a long time now, I am sure you must have heard of the gray rock technique. Many abusive survivors claim to have used the gray rock technique. If not, here’s how you can use the gray rock technique in an abusive relationship.

All you have to do is become unresponsive to the abuse. I know it’s easier said than done but if you don’t want to part ways with your abuser or you do not have an option to leave your partner, then the gray rock technique can come to your rescue.

Whenever you are put through the abuse, do not give them the desired response. Try to use calm body language, for example, just nod your head or keep a straight face. You can also completely stop arguing with them or simply give objective responses like yes or no.

This way your abuser will stop enjoying abusing you and get bored of it because they are not getting the response they want from you. Having said that, in some cases, the gray rock method can backfire. What can you do if the gray rock method backfires?

Let’s find out…

What To Do When Gray Rock Doesn’t Work?

There are chances that the gray rock method might not work for you. What will you do when the gray rock method fails? Since it is not the only technique you can use to deal with emotional and mental abuse, you can try some other things like;

1. Practice emotional self-care:

it’s very important to take care of your emotional self. When you are being abused emotionally time and again, you need to give extra time and care to yourself so that you repair all the harm caused by the abuser. At least 1 hour a day you must spend on self-care, keep some time off for relaxation, etc.

2. Have a strong support system:

having a strong support system is very important for you because you have become hollow from the inside because of all the abuse you’ve been through. The support system fills those empty, hollow patches.

3. Give safety utmost importance:

you have to have proper safety planning. You should be sure that you are safe from any kind of violence at all times. Keep things that can cause harm away from the abuser’s reach, have proper financial planning, be in touch with a lawyer if need be, etc.

4. Know when to call it off:

it’s hard to leave someone you love even when they have been nothing but abusive. It’s fine if you want to try to work things with them but if things don’t get better and the abuses become more frequent and start affecting your mental and physical health, you should know it’s time to leave.

That’s All Folks!

I hope you found this blog about the use of the gray rock technique in an abusive relationship and what you can do if the gray rock technique does not work helpful and informative.

Do share this blog with someone you think is in an emotionally abusive relationship and can benefit from learning about the gray rock method.

Thanks for reading.

Take care and stay safe.

About The Author

Kirti Bhati

I am an English literature (major) and psychology (minor) graduate from St. Bede’s College, Shimla. Postgraduate in Clinical psychology from IIS University, Jaipur. She has published a Research paper on Music therapy in the military population and Workplace stress in a national seminar conducted by Fortis hospital (gurugram) and international seminar conducted by St. Bede’s College, Shimla, Respectively. Authored a dissertation work on ‘effect of social media addiction on the mental and physical well-being in adolescents’ Currently working at calm sage as a writer.

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