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Why do so many people wish to control and dominate their partners?

(12 Posts)
toptramp Fri 26-Aug-11 22:09:25

Ok; most people probably don't but for those who do; WHY? Why are we also so scard of splitting up with someone who isn't right for us (which is one reason why I suspect we cling and control) and also, why not just find someone who is more compatible rather than try to change that person into something they are not? I am speaking from past experience and want a genuine discussion on the subject.

toptramp Fri 26-Aug-11 22:10:05

scared sorry

wicketkeeper Fri 26-Aug-11 22:21:05

That is such a good question. I don't know the answer, but I've just made a cup of tea, and will watch with interest.

solidgoldbrass Fri 26-Aug-11 23:04:00

Firstly and most importantly there is a massive cultural history and tradition of women being men's property, and a fair proportion of men who think that this is right and natural, and a woman who shows signs of assertiveness needs to be put in her place. Secondly, there is also a strong cultural tradition of people being told that the only way to live a full adult life is to be in a heteromonogamous relationship, so people should do anything they can to find a partner and maintain such a relationship, even down to physical violence or criminal damage against a partner who is reluctant to continue the relationship or remain monogamous.
Finally, some people are inadequate and can't function unless they have someone to bully - grinding someone else down makes them feel better.

RabbitPie Fri 26-Aug-11 23:07:10

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

hmc Fri 26-Aug-11 23:09:07

Scared of splitting up? - understandable fear surely? ; (relative) poverty, single parenthood and the hard work that entails. Blimey - I can see why people choose to stay in less than satisfying relationships

FabbyChic Fri 26-Aug-11 23:26:19

People are frightened of being alone, of starting the relationship cycle all over again, sometimes it is because you know the person that it makes it easier to stay.

I married an emotional and physical abuser even after he made my face look like I'd been in a car crash, it was only when I could have lost my children i.e left home and never returned that I fucked him off. The marriage lasted a month. I look back now and think what the fuck was I doing? I was lonely, living in a new place didn't know anybody.

toptramp Sat 27-Aug-11 00:46:40

hmc; I am happier being a single mum than I would be with any of my exes and I just dumped a guy because we had a less than satisfactory relationship as I far prefered the thought of being a single mum than being with him.

I do have issues with dumping unsatisfactory men quickly enough though an dnormally let it drag on until it gets unhealthy. I also can be accused of being clingy and controlling once i am in love and I do think that this is due to abandonment issues I have from childhood.

Once I have recovered from a relationship I am normally happy with single life until I start missing regular sex and afffection which is a very powerful glue I feel.

wicketkeeper Sat 27-Aug-11 09:36:49

OK, I've had my cup of tea, and a good night's sleep, and I've been mulling this over. I suspect there are as many reasons for being controlling as there are people who are controlling. And as many reasons for staying with the wrong person as there are people staying. Also, I don't think we should fall into the trap of thinking that it's only men who want to control and dominate (the hen-pecked husband is a well known stereotype, after all).

And would a person who was controlling in one relationship be just as controlling in a different one? In other words, is the need to control a part of their basic personality, or is it dependent on circumstance?

Hang on - I need more tea. I'll be back.

deburca Sat 27-Aug-11 14:40:03

OP have you ever heard the expression "its cheaper to keep her". Alot of people stay around for financial/security reasons. For alot of people its pretty fucking scary out there on your own - especially if you have dc's and a mortgage.

garlicnutter Sat 27-Aug-11 15:05:35

I was quite controlling, too, OP. Nowhere near as controlling as my abusers claimed, but still. I was attempting to force bad relationships into something more functional. Obviously, that was never going to work.

I knew what functional relationships look like, but lacked experience of what they feel like. I was trying to create mutually caring and respectful relationships. But the tools I had - persuasion; argument; manipulation - and the available material - angry, disrespectful egotists - were unsuited to the job.

PercyPigPie Sat 27-Aug-11 15:24:37

I think Rabbitpie is spot on.

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