How do you know if you are in danger of entering a controlling relationship? Are there signs? How do you know if someone has “crossed that line”?
Having past experience with a controlling relationship, I’m going to share with you some of the warning signs, from my own personal experiences. One of the first things I can tell you is that someone who is controlling may try to control you as long as you may let them. By this I mean, that from the beginning, when you start noticing signs, if you allow them to take advantage of the situation, you are encouraging them to further continue with their abusive practices.
Lines have to be drawn. Things need to be communicated, early on, what is acceptable and not acceptable behavior. What may be viewed at first as jealousy can get easily out of control. Let someone know where you stand. If they know that you will not tolerate their behavior, they will likely show their abusive nature sooner, before you get too involved with them, or they will move on and seek an easier victim.
One of the major signs of a controlling person is jealousy. While some jealousy is not a bad thing, it becomes out of control if someone accuses you of things that you haven’t done. For example….Making eye contact with someone of the opposite sex, exchanging a few words with strangers, or even close friends…even if you didn’t initiate a conversation, working with co-workers if your job involves team work, etc.
Some or all of these things can set a controlling person off, causing them to abuse you either verbally, physically, sexually, or any combination of abuse.
No one is entitled to have that kind of say over another persons personal experiences. Cut this kind of behavior off right away. Show that you will not allow someone to abuse you in this manner.
Some of the other things such an abuser might try to control, is who you see, and when. They may not allow you to visit friends, or relatives, or have anyone come over, especially if they are not present. They may threaten you, or people you care about in order to maintain control over you. They may not allow you to go anywhere or do anything without them. They may take control over your car keys, your clothing, your money, or any other of your possessions.
They may not allow you to use the phone, or write letters. Or they may listen to your conversations and make off the wall accusations about you.
Be very careful about being in a relationship with these types of people, as the deeper you get, the harder it is to break free.