Being a Control Freak Kills My Relationships Part 5

By Dr. Coach Love


Parts 1-4 carry the important beginnings of this discussion on controlling behavior. Check back and get caught up.


Our behavior can vary depending on the company we keep. For example, we may behave differently around work colleagues than we do with our families or friends. People influence our behavior through their interactions with and perceptions of us. Do you tend to be controlling ‘everywhere’? Think about this question carefully because there may be a pattern.


Perhaps you are more controlling in family situations. Got any nests of control freaks in your family tree? Did you learn the behavior from them? Or maybe you feel the urge to control exclusively in your work environment. Feel any pressure to exude confidence and competence? Understanding the different contexts or places of your primary control urges is essential to change your behavior.


Marriages and intimate relationships are settings where controlling behavior can be common.  Significant others (or even dating partners) who try too hard to please you may become a problem for you. They could be toxic and trigger your control freak-ism beyond where it might normally go. Why? In seeking to please you, these others may be ‘pushing’ or ‘insisting’ you get your way.


These “partners-in-control’ may wait until you tell them what you want and remain passive about decisions. They may even back off from expressing their own needs— particularly if they sense you disagree. Does this sound familiar? You may be a solid decision-maker and comfortable with it. In other settings it may be a strength. The other may not have that strength. But do you really need (or want) to decide issues all the time in your personal relationships? The other person may lack confidence and avoid decision-making for fear of being wrong. See any similarity here?


Is there anyone in your life who still tries to control you?


What do you think? Check back for more options.


That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.



Dr. Coach Love




1/09/09, 1/14/09, 1/28/09, 2/08/09; 2/27/09; 2/22/08, 2/23/08, 2/24/08, 3/06/08, 3/07/08, 3/08/08, 3/18/08, 3/19/08, 3/21/08, 5/25/08, 5/31/08, 6/03/08, 8/13/08, 8/16/08, 8/22/08, 8/25/08 



v      I invite your comments below.

v      E-mail your relationship coaching questions to

v      Questions selected will be edited as needed to reflect privacy,

            brevity, clarity, and general interest.

v      Sorry, Dr. Coach Love is unable to offer any personal advice through this blog.

v      Check out relationship coaching services at



©       Copyright 2009 P.H. Pickett, Ph.D.  All rights reserved.

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About drcoachlove

Dr. Coach Love is the author of the multiple award-winning book, The Marriage Whisperer: Tips to Improve Your Relationship Overnight, published by MSI Press, a traditional publisher in California.

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