By GalTime.com Relationship Diva Jane Greer, Ph.D.
Question: My husband is very controlling and is making my and our child's life unbearable. I don't have a way of supporting us financially or we wouldn't be together. He is always in a bad mood, complains about everything, and recently told me after having sex for an hour that I did not like sex anymore.HELP!I
Answer: In my book, What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship, I describe different personality types typical in relationships and one of them happens to be the Controller.
Controllers are completely selfish, the focus is always on them, and if it's not they feel their partner doesn't love them. They're the important ones, their needs always come first, and nothing else matters. Often, they're not even aware that their partner's needs exist. They always think that they're right and they always make you wrong.
Sounds to me like my description of a 'controller' describes your husband. So here's what I would encourage you to do.
Even thought you are financially dependent on him, doesn't mean you have to sacrifice all your needs and your self esteem. You want to begin to develop what I call "SelfNess" whereby you start to build up some healthy selfishness for you. This means exercising your right to expect your partner to consider you and be responsive to your needs. It includes dealing with your guilt so it doesn't hold you back from expressing your feelings, asking for what you need or hiding your true self.
So if an hour of sex is in fact too long a time and not enjoyable for you, and he's now telling you You don't like sex and faulting you... I would encourage you to say:
"You know, actually I do enjoy it with you. However, after X amount of time, I get tired and could use a little break." Or, if you want to specifically stop after a shorter period of time:
"Whereas you really like 'long distance sex', could we try 'short distance sex' where we can stop after a few minutes and just cuddle with each other for some time?
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The key is you must begin to take some control for yourself in your marriage. You can address the differences you have and make sure you start to advocate for yourself in the equation.
Interestingly enough, my experience has been that when "martyrs" - another personality type I describe in my book - begin to step up for themselves and stand up to controllers, they gain both their own self respect as well as the respect of the controller. Remember, he can only maintain control if you continue to go along with it. That gives you a great deal of power to use!
Check out my book for even more helpful tips on dealing with your controlling husband. Here's to you finding your voice and speaking up for you and your child.
Do you feel trapped? Have you been trapped? What did you do? If you need help, let us know!
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