Control in a relationship


When it comes to love and romantic relationships between people, our society believes that it is nice when two partners not only care about each other but also are pretty controlling in their relationships. Some people believe that controlling behavior is a clear sign of a huge love between partners. Even in literature, sometimes, we face examples of controlling behavior. Many authors approve and accept such things to be in their novels. Besides, we often hear that romantic relationships are mostly about obsession, and partners should never have any boundaries or separate lives. Of course, this sounds very interesting, concerning the situation when only two people exist in the whole world, but our reality is far more complicated than that.

No, here we are not saying that you can't be happy only with your partners. There are examples when people live like that and feel pretty happy. But those examples are more like exceptions from the main rule. According to this rule, happy relationships require a wide and diverse environment around two people in love. Unfortunately, some people don't understand that their partners also need other people around them. Those people often become very controlling and get offended very easily. Thus, they make their partners suffer because, on the one hand, they love them with all their hearts, but on the other hand, their love makes their partners feel like in prison.

manipulative relationship

What Is Manipulation in Relationships?

Controlling behavior in relationships often arises when one partner has relatively low self-esteem. Those people constantly fear that their partners will find someone else and leave them. In this case, they become manipulative and controlling. Often, those problems appear due to some problems in communication, and because of those problems, both partners can't set clear boundaries and can't explain what exactly they want from their romantic relationship. In fact, everyone can turn into a manipulator, for example, your boss, friends, co-workers, and of course, your romantic partner. In this case, we will concentrate on the last case.

Today, we mostly hear about controlling men, but women also have a lot to do about this problem. The main difference between men's and women's controlling behavior in a relationship is that women use subtler techniques and methods. But in both cases, this behavior may be very traumatic for each partner. There are two types of manipulative relationships. In the first type, both partners don't realize that they have this problem. In the second type, one of the partners not only realizes but also abuses this fact to his or her advantage. But how to understand which is your case? What are the main manipulating relationship signs?

As you may have guessed, it is very hard to hide manipulation in relationships because, most often, manipulators in relationships feel much happier than their partners. This happens because manipulative people often try to make their romantic partners feel guilty because it is much easier to manipulate those who feel guilty about something. Of course, there are many types and subtypes of manipulative people and relationships, but they all have one thing in common: one person uses one partner to his or her advantage. In most cases, manipulators are very smart people, and it is very hard to make them confess.

Tricky Techniques of Manipulation in Relationships

As you already know, manipulators are very intelligent and inventive people. So, what if you are into single women dating, and fear that because of love, you won't be able to recognize even the biggest signs of controlling behavior in relationships? Yes, manipulators are very smart, but every manipulation technique leaves some traces and evidence. Make sure that you know and understand the main signs of a manipulative woman. Also, it is good to learn how her main tricky and manipulative techniques work. Thus, via the help of our small list of manipulative techniques, it will be very easy to recognize her manipulative behavior.

Playing a victim

This is their favorite technique. By playing a victim, your manipulative partners want you to feel guilty for something. As we have said before, it is way easier to control those who believe that they are guilty of something. In this case, "to make things right," you will have to do what the manipulator wants.

manipulating relationships signsIsolation

This is one of the major signs of a controlling woman because she will do everything that is in her power to isolate you from other women. Most frequently, this happens when one of the partners suffers from low self-esteem. Remember, you should never isolate yourself from friends and relatives for the sake of your partner.

Love bombing

Love bombing is another technique that manipulators love to use. Often, they use it in combination with playing a victim because it helps create a contrast between you with your "offensive behavior" and your partner with his or her "real love." Love bombing means that your partner wants you to believe that he or she loves you, but who knows how he or she actually feels about you.


Have you ever seen people who claim that it is you who is responsible for all their problems? This behavior is called projection. A manipulative partner will never accept that some problems have appeared because of him or her. They will always claim that everything bad in their life is your fault, while everything good is their achievement.


This is one of the smartest techniques in the arsenal of a manipulative partner. The main idea of it is to redirect your attention to some other person. For example, your romantic partner may claim that your best friend likes to spread nasty rumors about you. Thus, he or she tries to isolate you from other people.

Twisting the facts

Manipulators always try to twist facts to their own favor. This explains why manipulative people tend to exaggerate and always try to make people believe in their version of "truth." Of course, you should never tolerate this behavior of your partner. Make sure that you will have a serious conversation next time you catch him or her on twisting some facts.

How to Understand You Are in Controlling Relationships?

Sometimes manipulators act so gently, so it is very hard to catch them on their manipulations. In those cases, they work on their manipulation for years, so the result of their work feels very natural, and you may even feel that his or her manipulations actually are your own ideas and desires. In this case, you may begin to believe that it is you who has problems while your manipulative partner only supports you. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that, without professional help, you will be able to detect a manipulator because sometimes they act very smart and cautiously. Thankfully, not all manipulators are masters at manipulating. So, there are still chances to detect them. If you think that your partner may be a manipulator, it is important to pay attention to our list of signs of a controlling girlfriend. Those signs are universal, and you can apply them to your relationship with boys too.

1. The game “Who did more good”

This game is about partners who turn their relationships into trading of favors. Those people often keep tabs of their interactions and literary count who deed more good to their relationships. Manipulators never keep those scores fairly because, for them, this game is just a pleasant way to control you.

2. They criticize you

Manipulators often criticize their partners. They do it not because they want their partner to become better people, but because they want to change and mold them into what they see most appropriate and acceptable. Thus, they often criticize their way of talking, dressing, sitting, talking, spending free time, and so on, and so forth.

3. They make you feel guilty

We have already mentioned this aspect of toxic partners, but guilt is one of the main signs of a controlling relationship. In healthy relationships, partners never feel guilty for their actions and deeds. On the other hand, manipulators love to falsely accuse people. This happens because they can't control you without leverage, and this is the easiest way to get one.

4. Hidden threats

Oh yes, manipulators often use threats to get what they want from other people! Of course, they never use this tool immediately and openly, but sooner or later, your partner will try to threaten you with something if you don't obey them. He or she will try to hit you’re the most vulnerable spots: kids, physical health, finances, and other important matters.

signs of controlling behavior in relationships5. Jealousy

Every manipulative person believes that his or her partner should belong only to them. This explains why manipulators are very jealous. Whenever you spend time with your friends or relatives without your partner, he or she will be very jealous or even aggressive because for them, you are just a toy, and they don't want to share you with other people.

6. There is no such thing as private time in your relationship

This is another way how manipulators attack you. Your partner may try to make you feel guilty even for desiring to spend some time on your own. This also may happen if you don't have the same needs in terms of spending time together, but in healthy relationships, people can create a workable compromise via communication, while in a relationship with a manipulator, you will have only blames and insults.

7. They like your bad sides

Manipulators don't like it when their partners work on themselves. Thus, they tend to undermine their fitness goals and like their partners to have bad habits. For example, your partner may try to tempt you with cigarettes, especially when you have quit. Manipulators like to keep their victims weak since, this way, it is way easier to use them.

How to Deal with Controlling People in Relationships

As you can see, manipulative and controlling people have many ways to harm your happiness, especially if you are dating one of them. We have already mentioned how and why they want to make you weaker and will never help you become a better person. Also, you can find major signs of controlling partners on our list. So, we hope that now, with a certain degree of preciseness, you can say whether you have a healthy relationship or not. If you are one of those who found themselves in love with manipulators, you should calm down because you have already made a huge step towards resolving this problem. Here we are going to share with you three the most effective ways on how to deal with controlling people.

1. Don’t allow them to isolate you

When dealing with a controlling and manipulative partner, you should never let your partner isolate you from your friends and relatives. Instead, to limit his or her toxic influence, you should keep your friends and relatives as close as possible to yourself. Friends may also notice some other techniques that your partner uses against you.

2. Create a plan

Remember to analyze every aspect of your life before taking any steps. Also, it is always good to have a plan to think a few steps ahead of a manipulator. Note, controlling and manipulative people always have some tricks to play against you. This is why your plan should contain at least three different ways of dealing with this problem.

3. Be ready to leave your partner

Of course, you can try to fix your relationship, but you need to know that manipulative and controlling people may be very dangerous, especially when they see that you understand their true nature. So, be ready to leave your partner, or he or she will turn your life into a real nightmare.

In the end, we would like to remind you about two types of controlling people. Yes, the first type represents relationships with sociopaths and selfish people who want to use you to please themselves. But there is also another type of relationship with people who become controlling and manipulating unintentionally. Frequently, this happens to people after some childhood traumas or problems. In this case, you can relatively easily fix this problem, but only if you have established communication with your partner. Remember, healthy relationships are not about two flawless people who've decided to be together, they are about two people who have their differences, flaws, and imperfections, solving problems on their way to joint happiness.

Hence, be attentive and caring with your partner, but never let him or her, in any way, control your life. Yes, human romantic relationships always require both partners giving up on some of their freedom for the sake of mutual happiness, but happiness never requires only one person to sacrifice everything for the sake of his or her partner.

Comments (1)

Having studied the above-mentioned signs, I can conclude that I’m in a controlling relationship. Thanks for making me wise about the problem!
17.07.2020 09:19

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