Impact from a Controlling Spouse
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Old 04-04-2009, 04:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Impact from a Controlling Spouse

Definition: I don't mean controlling like a husband not permitting his wife to leave the house, or not talk to certain persons, or physical kind of controls. I am referring more to verbal type and demanding controls, like regular questioning "why are you doing this?," or "did you trim the bushes as I TOLD YOU TO DO?," "Park over here [as if the driver has never driven before and does not know how to pick out a parking spot]." And finally the spouse exhibiting the controlling attitude does not consider it is controlling but only suggesting or helping. Understand that from time to time both husband and wife will exhibit some sort of controlling acts but it usually is not a continual dominate practice.

My question is when one spouse is expressing and exhibiting a dominating control toward the other spouse on a regular basis. If you experience this or have experienced this by your spouse, what is the effect, if any. on your personal, close relationship?

My wife is a perfectionist, a true perfectionist, which has been confirmed by her grown children and close friends. What they don't know, except for her grown children and me, is she is as controlling as she is a perfectionist. We have been married 45 years this year and I don't believe I have ever done anything right in her sight or opinion. Likewise our personal relationship has all but disappeared and it is hard not to have the closeness and I am not talking strictly about the sexual area. Just to be close. But I believe it is very difficult to be close with an indiviidual who is not only a perfectionist but controlling and I need to add, very critical.

Thanks for listening.
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Old 04-04-2009, 05:07 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

i doubt for the next 45 yrs it wil change either.

i believe if the control is there, it wont change. certainly not now.
especially if the control is a perfectionist.

my situation was different, not with a spouse, but my father was very controlling, perfectionist.
hes a carpenter and once made a fire surround. he made it 10 times before he ws eventually kinda pleased. yet the house was never finished whilst i lived there from the age of 13 to 21.
so its ok to be a perfectionist, but not to get results of completion from that perfectionism is quite strange.
im classed as oraganized and methodical. so thats a different characteristic altogether.
if i didnt kiss my dad, he'd question me and go into a rage.
if this wasnt right , i didnt have proper communcation with him, it was like constant lectures.
but and this hurts, dad never said
"justean , im so proud of u", i tell me children all the time.

i dont think you'll be close now. those aspects are gone.
the reality with my dad didnt change and i ended up moving on from the control to get my life back.
everything was a negative and i simply dont do negative.

your right, it is very difficult to be close to someone with those characteristics.
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Old 04-04-2009, 07:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

I do understand where your coming from Neptune. Over the years my wife has become controlling. At first it started off gradually. Now since she changed her job three years ago its full blown. At first I thought that she was just being anal retentive about everything but I realized that she wanted everything her way. And nothing was done properly until she did it.

This has led to alot of our arguements. Ive tried to break it down to her but she doesnt get it. Her parents and siblings say the same thing but what they see is just her attitude. Not the control part. Down to parking. Makes no sense to me. She feels she has to comment on if the car is perfectly straight or now. Now once I park it doesnt get moved. There are certain things that need controll however parking or driving for that matter isnt one of them.

Have you tried counseling? We are in counseling. I believe its much easier to hear what your doing wrong from a third party that has no ties than from your spouse. Ive learned alot of things about myself from it. If it doesnt help at least your become a little bit more familiar with yourself.
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Old 04-04-2009, 03:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

Thanks for your comments. We have tried counseling and we are not in counseling at the present time. There are two major obstacles to counseling for us: 1. My wife will go but it is her preference to not to go; she says she does not want to put all this stuff in our marriage out there for someone else to hear; 2. It is impossible to know ahead of time the quality, professionalism and "manners" of the counselor. The last counselor just about ruined the possibility of my wife ever going again. During the first visit, the lady counselor ask some question directed at me. I being such as talker (Irish) had no problem responding and responding probably a bit too long and too analytical. Then the counselor turns to my wife and says her name...XXXXXX, with a question mark in her tone. My wife does not talk easily, not to me and certainly not to a counselor the first day before there had been some relatiionsip and trust established between my wife and the counselor. Short story...we never went back.

Thanks for your time to reply,
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Old 04-04-2009, 06:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

My wife can be very controlling. It can be tough to deal with. Patience, patience, patience...I'm running out!
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Old 04-08-2009, 03:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

Sorry to hear about your 'control' problem. I've been married for 12 years and finally realized that my wife is very controlling. Sometimes it's very blatant, sometimes it is subliminal. It's hard to deal with because eventually (like in my case) you begin to lose yourself. That is, you start questioning yourself and thinking you are not good enough. The root of the problem is that the discrepancy is with the person trying to control not you. Their fear, doubt, and insecurity become so suppressed that it becomes a routine thing for them to pick apart the easiet target available- the person in front of them every day.

Whatever counselor you go to, the message will be the same- stop being consumed trying to satisfy the other person and live your own life. It's hard to do because once you do that then they will give you a hard time for 'changing' but you have to do it. I'm still trying to do it and it's day-to-day success.

Good luck.
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Old 04-09-2009, 08:19 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I am in the same situation. Been married 15 years and each day wife gets more demanding and almost impossible to satisfy. I came to the same conclusion as you. I just go day to day. I still love her and our kids and I never want to leave them. I realized that you have to take the good with the bad. I love my life with them. I put up with her and when it becomes really bad sometimes, I just go out, do what I like, let her cool off a bit. The one thing I do miss and feel sad about is that it seems I enjoy being by myself, doing the things I like but all those times I wish we can share together but then I realized she will turn it upside down. I do miss going out, doing things together, that part of our relationship is over , I miss those days. The price I pay to be with them. A marriage between a wife who is obsessive-compulsive controlling person and a submissive husband. Well, life goes on. I am just glad I have time for myself now and I can still be a part of the family. It's just sometimes it really hurts that I can't be close to her to tell her all my hopes and dreams because I am afraid she will be critical of them like so many times in the past. I am not bitter nor harbor any regrets. For heaven's sake I am 41 years old. I realized a long time ago that my life is what I chose, no one forced me to live this way. So I take the good with the bad. I cherished the days when my wife and I share our closeness and I bite my lip and try to see her point of view when she is on her OCD episodes.
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Old 04-10-2009, 08:33 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

I'm sure my husband would say I'm a perfectionist and controlling in that way. He says I'm impossible to please. I honestly thank him when he does things for me (washes my car, takes out the trash, does something he normally doesn't do). I try not to be critical. I rinse his dish and put it in the dishwasher, I don't want to be a perfectionist nagging wife.

But if you ask me, he exhibits the behavior from the start of your email. He "orders" me around thinking he's just requesting or suggesting. Sat down outside and he stated "put the umbrella down". I'm sorry, are your hands broken? No I didn't say that, but even our teen jumped up to do it. Nice.

It's all slowly killing our marriage.
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Old 04-10-2009, 09:11 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

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Originally Posted by Margaret View Post
I'm sure my husband would say I'm a perfectionist and controlling in that way. He says I'm impossible to please. I honestly thank him when he does things for me (washes my car, takes out the trash, does something he normally doesn't do). I try not to be critical. I rinse his dish and put it in the dishwasher, I don't want to be a perfectionist nagging wife.

But if you ask me, he exhibits the behavior from the start of your email. He "orders" me around thinking he's just requesting or suggesting. Sat down outside and he stated "put the umbrella down". I'm sorry, are your hands broken? No I didn't say that, but even our teen jumped up to do it. Nice.

It's all slowly killing our marriage.
Margaret, your life sounds like mine with my dh. He's a good man and good husband, but this is one of his character flaws. I'm also a perfectionist and pretty neat, where my husband is a bit of a slob. I usually find myself asking him to clean up after himself and he should respect the fact that I don't want to live in a pig sty. He, on the other hand, is controlling in that he bosses me around. He doesn't know how to ask for things, he just orders me to do something without saying please or at least putting it in a way that isn't bossy. I hate it! I don't feel that I'm bossy in my requests because I usually start them with, "would you mind doing..." or "if you have a chance can you please..." and so on.

The way I deal with his bossyness is that I usually ignore him and do things my way anyway. When he really gets to me I simply tell him to do it himself. He swears that he's not controlling and instead accuses ME of being bossy.

I recently realized that he's like that because that's the way he was brought up. His mother is the most controlling person I've ever met. She'll give you orders the moment you walk in the door (I ignore her too). She's like that with my husband and his sister (and anybody else within 10 feet of her), and in turn my husband and his sister are bossy and controlling too.

There isn't much I can do to change him except to ignore him, go against him, and sometimes I have to blow up and tell him he's not my damn boss. If I had been in your shoes, Margaret, I would have said exactly what you said in your head, "I'm sorry, are your hands broken?" In fact, that's what I said to my husband once when he was sitting on the couch and ordered me to get him a glass of water. My tactics have worked to some degree in that he isn't as bossy as he used to be. I think he knows that the more he tries to control me, the more I push back.

I think that it's not so much their controlling that gets to people, it's the way they say things. I bet that if they simply learned to ask the right way, it wouldn't bother us so much. What do you all think?

Last edited by Alecram; 04-10-2009 at 09:16 AM.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:42 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

For me it's been one nightmare after another. It is not easy to deal with such controlling personalities day-after-day. I have been married for past 10 yrs. My husband never does anything to help me with my 2 young kids, chores, school work, taking them to classes nothing. No matter how hard I try nothing can please him. He constantly tries to find fault with every single thing. Anything goes wrong - it's my fault. To top this,his mother is the most irrational person I ever met. Every time I meet her she has insulted,reprimanded and abused me and my family members for no fault of mine/ours. My husband never stood up for me even once. He makes all the decisions and brought upon several finanical losses. I have to go and clean up his mess all the time. He easily gives up on things that require some work and it always falls on my shoulders to complete it. He has never allowed me to spend even one penny on my own, even though it's my share of hard earned money too. Lot of people look upto me as their role model. He has never said one positive thing about me till today. If I don't agree to any one thing he says, he'll make sure that I go through hell and finally have to bow my head. There is no way I can have a proper conversation with him - owing to his haughty and frightening temper and rages with anger, inflicts the silent treatment when upset. Nothing positive comes out of his mouth. His behavior has chronically depressed me and it's very demoralizing for me. I feel like I'm just sacrificing my life for the sake of my children and don't have a life of my own. I just can’t believe how I'm going from being completely happy and inlove
to unhappy, depressed and worn down physically and emotionally by one man.
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Old 11-15-2010, 12:56 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Impact from a Controlling Spouse

Quote:
Originally Posted by FromNeptune View Post
Thanks for your comments. We have tried counseling and we are not in counseling at the present time. There are two major obstacles to counseling for us: 1. My wife will go but it is her preference to not to go; she says she does not want to put all this stuff in our marriage out there for someone else to hear; 2. It is impossible to know ahead of time the quality, professionalism and "manners" of the counselor. The last counselor just about ruined the possibility of my wife ever going again. During the first visit, the lady counselor ask some question directed at me. I being such as talker (Irish) had no problem responding and responding probably a bit too long and too analytical. Then the counselor turns to my wife and says her name...XXXXXX, with a question mark in her tone. My wife does not talk easily, not to me and certainly not to a counselor the first day before there had been some relatiionsip and trust established between my wife and the counselor. Short story...we never went back.

Thanks for your time to reply,
LOL. Dude, that is exaclty how it is now with my wife and I. We're probably extroverts and they are introverts, and private. She will talk, but it's like that more than not, and It pisses me off. I try to let her start, then i hear, well you say things better.. LOL. Yeah. Really, well, then why are we here. You get what i'm saying more than your acting like. My wife is very Obessive and compulsive. It's at times enough to make me hear voices and I want to wrap my head in foil to keep the voices out. She's like people, who want to live in denial and ignorance, then there's no responsiblity. I bet you get blamed for most of the problems too, because your open about yourself, feelings...? LOL. IM me if you want to talk more.
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