When you first get into a relationship, you are not really sure what you are going to get. You have a basic idea of what your wife is like, but her true nature will only surface once you are together and living in the same house.
One common concern that most husbands deal with is a controlling wife. As a loving husband, you will let almost everything slide. But what if your wife is becoming a controlling spouse? How should you handle your relationship?
What is a controlling wife?
First, you must make sure that you truly have a controlling wife. According to Andrea Bonior, a psychologist and columnist, there are tell-tale signs that can confirm that you have a controlling spouse.
A controlling spouse puts a boundary between you and your family. You will feel isolated as she makes sure that there is space between you and your parents and siblings. She also criticizes you a lot. This is not the constructive kind of criticism, but the comments that make you feel inferior and small.
A person is also controlling if she is handing out threats. Some of these include the possibility of leaving you, removing benefits, or harming herself if you do not follow her.
A controlling wife also uses attraction and care to her own advantage. She gives her attention and care conditionally. If she does not receive what she wants from you, then you will not get any love from her, either.
The controlling spouse also makes a list of all the grudges and favors that she gives and receives. She uses guilt as an instrument to get what she wants.
If your wife has any one of these characteristics, then she could really be a controlling wife.
Tips on How to Deal With a Controlling Wife
1.Keep things rational.
A controlling wife can drive you insane. Since she is always getting her way in all things, you may reach your boiling point and want to just blast her out. But anger will not solve anything. You must keep yourself calm and keep things rational.
Instead of directly disagreeing with your wife, you can say, “Your point is good, but how about taking a look at the situation from this perspective?” By not openly opposing her opinion, she will be more accepting of your side and more likely to take your recommendation.
2.Consider her point of view.
You can put yourself in her shoes and try to understand why she is the way she is. Her past may have a part in making her the way she is today. Understanding her attributes will help you know her more and be more empathetic with her.
Looking at the situation from her viewpoint will also help you deal with the root cause of her behavior and not just her controlling nature. Even though her past experiences do not give her the license to be too controlling, it should still give you an idea of what you are dealing with and what to expect from her.
3.Ask her the right questions.
Controlling wives tend to avoid the issue of their prevailing behavior. Sometimes, they deny their controlling nature altogether. Instead of dealing with it directly, you can pick the right questions to ask her. Certain questions will make her understand how unacceptable or unreasonable her demands are.
For example, if she requires you to do what she wants, or else she will leave the house, you can ask her this question: “Do you want me to walk out of the house every time you do not follow what I say?”
If she gives care and attention conditionally, you can ask her, “Do you want me to restrict my love and care for you if I don’t receive the things that I want?”
By making her think of her own actions and her words, you are indicating her incorrect behaviors and emphasizing the things that she needs to do to fix your relationship.
4.Always be respectful to your wife.
No matter how over-controlling she is, she deserves to be treated with respect. She is still the person that you chose to be with for the rest of your lives.
When she starts controlling you or your marriage, listen to what she has to say. Even if her comments are disagreeable, just absorb everything that she is telling you. Make a mental note of the things that you think should be changed.
If there are some petty things that come out, assess the situation. Prioritize the topmost concerns first. You cannot raise everything in one sitting. Make sure that your words, although true, will not be disrespectful to her.
5.Be prepared for her rebuttal.
A controlling wife usually is not aware of her actions. Most of the time, they feel that they are the one being controlled, which requires them to be more insistent in their actions. If you start communicating the problem, chances are, she will utterly deny it.
To make her realize her behavior, you should be clear with the term “controlling.” Give definitive meanings of the word. You can also indicate specific instances that would suggest that she is a controlling spouse.
You should not expect your spouse to just stop being controlling completely. She has been that way for a long time, and it will be very difficult for her to change instantly.
To make the transition easier for her, you can set limits on where you are willing to tolerate her controlling behavior. Keep in mind that she may also set her own boundaries, thinking that you are controlling as well. Have an open mind and listen to what your spouse has to say.
7.Seek professional help.
If you still can’t figure things out on your own, you may need experts to intervene with your situation. You can seek help from marriage counselors or therapists to find the root cause of the problem. A third-party opinion can guide you to the real issues in your relationship and help you deal with the concerns in an unbiased way.
8.Reclaim control of your life.
You should regain control of your own life. If your spouse kept you isolated or prevented you from being with your family and friends, you should make time to physically get out of the house and bond with them. If you feel restricted by your wife, you should communicate to her that you still need some time alone.
Even if you are currently asking your spouse to reduce her controlling behavior, it should not stop you from enjoying each other’s company and doing activities together. This way, you can eliminate any ill feelings toward each other and connect more emotionally.
9.Assess her words.
One tactic of a controlling wife is making you feel guilty. You should evaluate her words and see if there is any truth behind what she is saying.
If you see through her technique and none of what she is saying is true, then stop feeling guilty and downtrodden. Her words should not cause you to be broken and demoralized. Instead, go back to your core values and see to it that you are complete despite what your wife is saying to you.
10.Be ready to walk away.
The most abusive and controlling wife can be detrimental to your health. If you have exhausted all efforts to reconcile with your wife and she still continues to physically or verbally abuse you, know when it is time to let go of the marriage.
It is quite difficult to admit to domestic violence. But according to the statistics of the Centers for Disease Control, 1 in 7 cases see men undergoing severe violence from their partners. If you continue to suffer at the hands of your spouse, be ready to leave the relationship.
Your wife may have grown to be controlling of your relationship either consciously or unconsciously. Whatever the reason, you should be open to her about what you feel. You should tell your spouse about it. Do not let your situation get the better of you. Conflicts and arguments can only be settled through proper communication and open-mindedness.
If you truly love each other, you will keep your lines open, listen to what one has to say, and restore the relationship. But if you are still continuously being abused and hurt, assess your situation and decide when it’s time to go.