There are problems in every relationship, some are harder to deal with than the others. Coping with a controlling partner can be a bit difficult, but this does not mean that you decide to break up with them instantly, there is always a better way of solving problems, especially when you love that person. So, here are a few ways how you can stop suffering in a controlling relationship.
1. Try getting to the root of it
Controlling behaviours may arises from deep rooted insecurities, a bad childhood, loss, cheating or some other bad experience; try having a talk with them, make them feel loved and supported. Deal with their insecurities head on and assure them that you truly love them. Help them get over whatever it is that they fear, don’t escape it. Work together on it as a team, take professional help if need be.
2. Communicate how you feel
Tell them how their controlling and manipulative behavior is hurting you and damaging your relationship. If they love you, they’ll understand that they need to change their attitude. Have a talk with them, be clear and firm about your views. Talk a stand for yourself, tell them it’s not okay that you treat them like a slave or a puppet. Be honest and specific about how you feel in a calm and composed manner, fighting about it will create more issues.
3. Stop being too accepting
You reinforce the behavior that you keep accepting, if you keep giving in to everything your partner says, they’ll further develop the habit of suppressing you. Learn to say NO. Your partner might make you feel guilty about it but remember that is one of their ways of controlling you, so even if they try emotionally blackmailing you into doing something, say no unless you feel like doing it yourself.
4. Stand up for your priorities
A controlling partner will try to have power over every single thing that you do, every relationship you have, every choice that you make; they will have you do it your way. This should not be the case, you should have the right to do things that are significant to you, that make you happy. If you have certain priorities like family, career etc; stand up for them. Make it clear to your partner that you don’t want to give up them up, take control of the things that matter to you personally.
5. Don’t strive for their approval
Remind yourself that you are a mature, capable human being who doesn’t need constant approval and validation. Giving up wearing blue because it’s not your partner’s favorite, trying to like sushi because your partner would want you to etc. Don’t seek approval for every little thing you do, don’t play the victim. Have your own choices and do what makes you happy, don’t try to mould yourself into someone your controlling partner wants you to be.
6. Have a life outside of your relationship
Relationship is a part of your life, don’t make it the center of your existence. A good way of dealing with a controlling partner is to have something going outside the relationship, hang out with friends, have a hobby, enjoy your own company. This will add positivity to your life and you will be more self aware, enabling you to take a stand for yourself, it will add perspective and strength to your personality and you’ll have more confidence of dealing with your partner.
7. Don’t be dependent on your partner
A little financial independence is important, being completely dependent on your partner gives them an upper hand and they might think it’s their right to make all decisions for you and make you live according to their liking. This will boost your confidence and self worth and if your partner knows that you are in a relationship with them by choice and not because of your needs, they won’t take you for granted and will try to mend their ways.
8. Love yourself
This is the best way to deflect control, know your worth. None of us is perfect, learn to love your imperfections, don’t feel guilty about them. Practice confidence boosting exercises, like talking to yourself in the mirror etc. Love yourself for your individuality. Don’t get intimidated by other people even if you are madly in love with them. When you love yourself, you’ll know what you should be accepting, what you truly deserve. Don’t lose yourself trying to love someone else.