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Nancy Underwood

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Is he being nice? Or being controlling?

At first you might think it’s sweet that he is giving you so much attention. He wants you to call him to say good night when you get home from work. He’ll show up at your door on Saturday morning with bagels.

It seems cute at first, but does he have an ulterior motive? Is the good night phone call a way to check what time you got home? Are the bagels to make sure you are where you said you were?

In subtle ways, your man may be trying to control you. Is he controlling you? If the following is normal, you need to change some things:

#1 - “You’re Wearing That?”

The first night you met your man, you were wearing a dead-sexy outfit. Now that you’re his, he discourages you from wearing anything remotely sexy. He will make comments about your outfit that make you uncomfortable so you’ll change into something less sexy.

#2 - “You Didn’t Ask Me”

Do you check with your man before accepting an invitation for a night out with your girlfriends? Unless you have a family together, or other responsibilities, you should not have to ask permission to see your girlfriends.

#3 - “We’ll go with my Friends Instead”

Does he always encourage outings with his own friends, and discourage anything with your own friends? Someone who is controlling will want to keep a close eye on you. Not only will going with his friends allow a few more eyes on you, it will keep any of your friend’s eyes off him - Any eyes that may convince you he is controlling.

#4 - “I’ll pick you up”

While it may seem sweet that he wants to drop you off and pick you up for a girls night out, this may also be his way of making sure he knows exactly where you are. If you were taking a taxi home, you could change your plans and end up at the strip club. This way he knows you have to be where you said you would. He may even come early and check up on you.

All of these things are ways of him making you dependent on him. You will end up with lower confidence, and a loss of friends. Your friends will feel like they’ve taken a back seat, and they will slowly stop calling. Don’t let your man control you.


I’ve been in a controlling relationship before, and this is just the beginning. Don’t let it get worse!
Justine, San Jose, California

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