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To ask if you or your partner is controlling?

65 replies

Nativity3 · 25/07/2015 19:37

As the title says. If you don't have an 'equal' relationship, is it you or your partner 'in control' and how do they show it? What is 'normal' and what is 'too much?'

Just curious of others experiences. AIBU to wonder when 'a bit controlling' become too much or becomes suffocating?

If you have escaped this type of relationship, what made you realise it was too much and how did you do it?

OP posts:

LashesandLipstick · 25/07/2015 19:39

DP can occasionally be overbearing, because his parents are overprotective and he grew up in a very...involved house. So it's a bit alien to him that I might want my own space or be able to do stuff alone. I just tell him to stop it and he apologises and goes and does something else. Tbh he's otherwise very placid


AlpacaMyBags · 25/07/2015 20:47

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NoArmaniNoPunani · 25/07/2015 20:52

No, we are complete equals.


pregnantpause · 25/07/2015 20:52

I'm controlling in many ways. I get angry if dh put stuff in the kitchen the wrong way, I get angry if he does stuff in the wrong order, I often almost schedule his days alone with dc to ensure they do something nice.

He is controlling in many other ways. He drives- it's not an acceptable alternative for me to drive. We don't eat fish. He is the only one who doesn't like it but he won't let us have it. If I go out I have to tell him where I'm going, what I'm doing who I'm with.

Swings and roundabouts and all that

It works for us. In fact we're very happy.


Murfles · 25/07/2015 20:53

DH was brought up where his dad worked and mum stayed at home. His mum did all the cooking, cleaning etc. We have a happy balance, whoever is home first puts dinner on, puts washing in the dryer etc. when the other comes home then they muck in until the jobs needing done are finished. In our first year of marriage there was endless arguments about who did what but that was 21 years ago. I tend to do housework, cooking, washing, gardening etc when I'm on holiday though as I get much more holiday than DH. Likewise when he's off I come home to everything done.


itsaruddygame · 25/07/2015 21:42

There are certain areas of our lives where I am very much in control and others where DH likes things to be done a certain way and I respect that.

I am a more go with the flow person in day to day life than DH but more driven in terms of career and bringing home the bacon so tend to oversee finances etc.

Labour in the home is 50/50 and I could not be married to somebody that expected me to cook/clean etc and not to do anything themselves. In fact I would run for the hills from such a man!


pickingstrawberries · 25/07/2015 21:45

Mine can be quite controlling, yes, but it's quite hard to verbalise. Even though I know he is, it is quite hard to think off the top of my head of specific examples. He certainly controls friendships, which is the area that's most difficult and upsetting for me, I would say.


TheAnswerIsYes · 25/07/2015 21:55

Each of us is quite controlling in different ways. We do tend to let the other get on with stuff but every now and then we clash and have the most almighty rows which I then win.


pickingstrawberries · 25/07/2015 22:15

He's just told me to go to bed.

I suppose that could count.


TTWK · 25/07/2015 22:19

He drives- it's not an acceptable alternative for me to drive. We don't eat fish. He is the only one who doesn't like it but he won't let us have it.

WTAF!!!!! A grown adult being told what they can and can't eat! And you're happy with that??????

Mindboggling! Still, it's your life.


Stylingwax · 25/07/2015 22:24

I am controlling. I control big decisions, and all finances (DP gives me his salary). In my defence he is dreadful with money and if given access to it will spend without thinking.
I am also pregnant at the moment which makes it worse Confused


FarFromAnyRoad · 25/07/2015 22:25

pregnantpause - is that a marriage you're in or the bloody Moonies? I feel sorry for you.
I feel sorry for anyone who is happy to be controlled over matters of friendship, food or their exact whereabouts when going out. I find that so strange - are you people actually happy like that?


Alwayswiththechords · 25/07/2015 22:33

I'd like to think we're equal but in all honesty we're both controlling, though about completely different things. I'm a complete control freak when it comes to finances, he's a control freak about household stuff like everything being organised in a certain way, tidying up needs to be done in a certain way etc.


teacher54321 · 25/07/2015 22:35

I am more controlling than DH, I get very anxious about him drinking too much after some bad experiences early on in our relationship where he drank too much and would make himself poorly. I have in the past had to be quite controlling about money because again he made some bad choices in the past and I had to bail him out.
He's much more sensible now!


pointythings · 25/07/2015 22:38

I think at the moment I am probably the controlling one, but it is (I hope) temporary - DH is working to control his alcohol use, I am his support crew and I am there to remind him when he is not sticking to agreed limits. However, in this case it is a matter of developing new good habits, and I expect this not to last. I told him the other day that I've spent the past 4 years watching him slowly self-destruct and so it is going to take a while for me to be confident that he can be moderate, but I do genuinely believe he can. And he has agreed to me being his handbrake.

In everything else we are complete equals - helped by the fact that we both work F/T and always have. He can't do the heavy physical stuff due to severe back problems, so he does other things, but it all evens out. And when it came to picking out a new colour for our bedroom, we picked the same one on instinct. I think we're OK.


Sammy135 · 25/07/2015 22:40

I can be quite controlling, in all aspects of my life and I always have been. I like things to be done in certain ways, I like to have our home very clean, my work life is very organised, i have very high standards in my work.

However, I don't really see this as a bad thing? I realise I have a controlling nature and try not to inflict it on Dp (who is much more laid back!). I don't expect others to dance to my tune, if I want something done in a specific way I do it myself. Anything else, we do together and contribute equally, it works for us


Alisvolatpropiis · 25/07/2015 23:30

I can be controlling, my husband less so.

But only insofar as he genuinely needs guidance re housework otherwise he'd let it descend to dangerously close to How Clean is Your House levels of untidy. It isn't that he's lazy, in all other areas of his life he is very motivated, it's his major flaw.

In all other aspects we're equal, not possessive of each other, or demanding we only eat certain foods/do things a certain way.


Alisvolatpropiis · 25/07/2015 23:31

To be clear - we do equal shares of the housework, I just have to tell him what needs doing. I don't do it all.


MrsGentlyBenevolent · 25/07/2015 23:52

Hmm it depends in context I guess. I can be 'controlling' on a day to day basis, but that's because my partner has very little common sense, or a sense of routine. For example, we take turns in cooking, but if he hasn't made something before I basically have to stand over him and explain bit by bit. Also, have to 'remind' him to cook - he would leave it until past 10pm and not notice given half a chance. So, general 'you need to do this, this and this as a priority', is my level of controlling.

There are aspects I leave totally to him without much question though. Money and his work are his matters, though I'm more than happy to give advice when asked. I trust him implicitly on these matters though, and the choices he makes with them - for example, he's seriously considering a career change, I've always said his job satisfaction outweighs money (lucky in this case it would mean more money in the long term though).

I think in different aspects of a relationship, one person tends to lead over the other, but ultimately becomes an equal balance. Obviously, when one person totally dictates over the other, that is a whole other situation that probably needs addressing.


Slimmerforsummer · 26/07/2015 00:28

I think DP thinks Im controlling because I keep asking him to do stuff because he doesn't see it needs done and I'm already doing a million other things while he sits on his backside watching tv.

He faffs about with decision making, either just not doing anything about it, or says he doesn't care so I should decide. Most of the time now I just go ahead and decide stuff without him. Again, he sees this as controlling (fair enough I suppose. Though if he would be decisive is have no issue handing the reins over to him!)


pregnantpause · 26/07/2015 00:36

I'm not controlled over where I go who I see but rather he needs to know. I'm comfortable with that. Just as I need him to do stuffy way.

I find it interesting that I admit to scheduling his days- or telling him what to do when he is alone with dc- posters have made no mention of this, but huge focus on his crimes ( p.s it's rather rude to focus on a pp answering an op- the pp - me- hasn't asked for your opinion or advice)


MamaMotherMummy · 26/07/2015 00:47

I read the responses as they were, then read them back as if they were by men. I think people would be horrified tbh.


SchwarzwalderKirschtorte · 26/07/2015 07:16

Well if you're genuinely happy...

He is controlling in many other ways. He drives- it's not an acceptable alternative for me to drive. We don't eat fish. He is the only one who doesn't like it but he won't let us have it. If I go out I have to tell him where I'm going, what I'm doing who I'm with.
You are an adult I presume? That level of control would be unacceptable to me but again if it makes you happy - it wouldn't suit me though.


Writerwannabe83 · 26/07/2015 07:23

Me and DH are happy to let us each have our own space and live our lives. We never, ever tell each other what we can or can't do and we certainly never monitor each other's movements - I don't see how any relationship where any of that happens can be classed as normal.

My DH isn't controlling about anything. I on the other hand am pretty controlling when it comes to the housework or DS Smile


HandMini · 26/07/2015 07:32

As a PP said, in our relationship we're both controlling, though about completely different things.

Isn't that normal? One person cares more about something than the other and makes their POV clear.

Controlling is in shades from "please do it this way" with good reason to "my way is the only way and I will raise merry hell if its any other way".

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