Control Issues in Relationships
Many marriages and relationships have problems that result from control issues. In some cases, a marriage may
even end in divorce when the husband or wife eventually tires of having a spouse controlling every move they make.
Control issues in relationships are pretty much guaranteed to lead to some serious arguments. Some
of the most serious disagreements that have led to police reports of domestic violence between a husband
and wife are often about control issues.
There are almost always going to be problems if a spouse feels like his or her partner is controlling every move
he or she makes. We all want to feel that we are in control of our lives and that we can make our own decisions
instead of being told what to do. There are many ways control issues show in up your marriage including:
1. Controlling all the money and making your spouse ask you for money.
2. Controlling all decisions related to your children.
3. Controlling who you socialize with and when.
4. Controlling all purchases.
5. Controlling what you do with your free time.
This controlling behavior may end up turning into domestic abuse. Abusers generally want to have the power in
the relationship and control their partner. The control may start out with small things but often it starts to
cover more and more areas. When a spouse feels like someone is controlling his or her every move, her or she may
fight back or just give up and give in.
Don’t Suffocate Your Relationship
Controlling behavior often suffocates a relationship. A marriage or commitment involves two people who should be
partners and should work together to meet each other's needs. If one spouse is controlling every move of the other,
that spouse is the only one getting his or her needs met. When this happens, the marriage is going to fall
It is difficult to get controlling behavior under control. The controlling person needs to understand that he or
she is behaving in an inappropriate way and why it is wrong. If your spouse is a controlling person, you need to
express to your spouse that he or she cannot be controlling every move you make in all areas of your life. No one
can control you unless you choose to give them the power to do so. Abusive relationships occur when the controlled
spouse simply stops fighting back and lets the other control him or her
How to Talk About Controlling Behavior
You need to make sure that when you start discussing your partners controlling behavior that you are calm and
not angry or resentful. You cannot go into the conversation with negativity if you want a good resolution. Make
sure you focus on one particular situation and only discuss that one at that time. Don't take on an accusatory tone
or make threats about leaving. You also don’t want to appear unwilling to compromise. The key is to let your spouse
see how compromise is much more effective than control in your marriage.
In many marriages, a controlling spouse can cause the relationship to turn into a battle of wills. This does not
have to happen, though. If your spouse starts controlling every move in an area of your life, be patient but also
be firm about the fact that you will not be controlled in every way. This can be done without yelling or getting
angry. All you have to do is tell your spouse how you feel and follow through.
All discussions about control need to focus on how domestic abuse of all types is totally unacceptable. If you
think your spouse may be on the road to becoming abusive, you and your spouse need to get counseling immediately.
If necessary, you can always go by yourself if your spouse refuses to go with you. That way, your spouse will know
you are serious about taking control of your own life and not being abused.
People get married assuming that the love and compassion they have for each other will help them live as
partners. If one spouse is controlling every move of the other, he or she is violating the trust that the other
gave him or her when they got married. Counseling and learning new ways to communicate can help when there are
You cannot ignore control issues in relationships and think they are going to go away. They will get better only
if both of you work on it together.