Few people are actually aware of the warning signs of a controlling man.
Being in a relationship with a controlling personality may happen to anyone. Maybe the red flags were not present at the beginning of the relationship or perhaps you didn’t realize his jealousy when you wanted to go out with your friends.
It is vital for you to take control of your relationship and life by knowing whether your husband or boyfriend is behaving in ways that are controlling. Helpguide.org says that if you believe your husband is controlling or abusive, you should contact someone you trust—such as a counselor, a domestic violence shelter, a family member or friend—for help. There’s a huge difference between wanting what’s best for you and actually deciding what’s best for you.
Here is a great example of how my friend realized she was with a controlling man.
My friend– let’s call her Evelyn– met a great guy who was very charming, always ordered for her on dates and protected her from creepy men at the bar. It wasn’t until a year into the relationship that she realized that her boyfriend John was a control freak.
Evelyn never thought of her boyfriend as someone with a controlling personality. She confided in me and our friends that John controlled what she did and how she did not feel free to do what she wanted without his consent. She was being told by everyone to work on her relationship more. Evelyn hoped that if she showed more affection towards
him, he would change. However that never happened.
Why are some men acting like this? Men who try to control you tend to be insecure with themselves. Perhaps they were betrayed by their past relationships and are scared of being hurt again. They may have grown up in a family where the man controlled the woman. They also might have low self esteem and the only way to gain confidence is to make the girl’s self-esteem even lower. Whatever the reason may be, relationships built on mistrust and restraint are unhealthy. It is neither good for the man nor for the women to stay in a hostile relationship.
If you think control is a problem in your relationship, you may want to start being more perceptive and find out what the warning signs are of a controlling man.
When a guy needs to constantly be with you and you cannot do anything without his input, it is a huge red flag. According to the Red Flag Campaign, a controlling partner may put down your relatives and friends, hoping to keep your relationships at bay. Of course, it’s normal to always want to be with your partner the first few months. However, if it limits your ability to do things independently and if you have no privacy then it becomes an issue of control.
Another sign is if you find yourself losing contact with your family, friends and
activities you once liked doing. He may not want you to go on social media sites without his presence. He tells you that he wants you to spend more time with him. He says your family is controlling. As time goes on, you have less friends than you used to and your family continuously complains that you are neglecting
It is also a huge warning sign, if your man has different rules for you than he has for himself. He is always going out with the guys and does not give you any time with your girlfriends. He tells you that he needs privacy and prevents you from knowing his password to his Facebook account and email but gets angry if you draw the same boundaries. He flirts with other girls in front of you but freaks out if you do the same.
Eventually, you end up doing activities that interest your guy, even if you’re not interested in them yourself. You rarely do things you love. You tend to justify your actions by telling yourself that you want to get to know his friends or perhaps that it’s cool that he wants to teach you about his interests. Still, you end up making all the compromises and end up feeling like you’ve lost something important to you.
A subtle form of abuse is when your man is taking charge of finances, according to Helpguide. While it may seem normal if your husband or partner manages the bills, if your husband refuses to give you money and demands records of every dollar you spend then that is a sign of abuse. In some controlling relationships, the boyfriend does little to support the couple.
The girlfriend finds herself working all the time to pay the bills and to put food on the table. In some cases the guy makes promises that he will take care of his girlfriend but inadvertently that ends up isolating her further and making her dependent on him. In this instance, the girlfriend or wife does not contribute to important financial decisions that affect them both.
The controlling guy will always finds a way to make the girl feel that if anything goes wrong in their relationship it is all her fault. If the girl complains, he will quickly distract her concerns by stating that she has done wrong since the beginning of the relationship. Instead of discussing your issues, you find yourself defending yourself and you feel the need to give in.
Controlling husbands or boyfriends may use violence or threats to keep a sense of power. Helpguide says that this could take the form of threatening injury, pain or even murder. He may threaten to take your children from you, threaten to commit suicide, destroy your property or scare you. Sexual abuse is also an example of violence.
According to Dr. Phil*, if you and your partner haven’t made any effort to improve your relationship then you should ask yourself, “What is it costing me to be in this relationship?” If the answer is your dreams, identity, or dignity, the cost is too high.
If you’re in a relationship that is more about control than about mutual respect, support, and mutual care, you must do something about it. If you still believe that after all the abuse there is still love underneath it all, then you should start negotiating boundaries with your man. But if your man is not willing to take responsibility for his actions, if he cannot change his controlling manner then its time to free yourself from his manipulations and take back control of your life.
Though you may not have the courage to end the relationship, you won’t be able to start living your life on your own terms until you break up. Be prepared to end the relationship by planning out what you’ll tell him. If he is very abusive, you’ll want to come up with an escape plan and walk away.
Controlling and manipulative people are often created by external factors that you have no control over. You cannot tell yourself that you can change or rescue this person. You may care for the person and want to help them but the best help you can give him is to refuse to be a victim and lead them to professional help.
*“Dealing With Control Issues,” Dr. Phil, accessed October 31, 2013, http: //www.drphil.com/articles/article/69
“Escapaing The Control Of A Controlling Man,” Beth Cofone, accessed October 31, 2013, http: //ezinearticles.com/?Escaping-the-Control-of-a-Controlling-Man&id=3013475