She continued, “He forgot Christmas for me. We were at my parents and after all the gifts were handed out, I didn't have one. He said, ‘Oh, I forgot you.’”

Another said of her former spouse, “He lied about me to people in our church which isolated me.”

My Spouse Tries to Control Whom I Spend Time With or Talk To

A woman wrote about her current spouse, “He gets angry when I visit and spend time with my family.”

A respondent said of her current spouse, “He is just overbearing and does not like me to do anything without him and does not want me to spend time with friends or family.”

My Spouse Justifies His/Her Negative Behavior OR Blames Me for His/Her Behavior

A woman said, “He refuses to help with any major decisions. If he doesn't like my decision that I'm forced to make without him, then he throws a tantrum like a 2-year-old.”

Another said of her current spouse, “He does things like ask me if we can go out to eat when he knows we are low on money. Because I can’t say no without risking an outburst, we go. A week or two later when we don't have the money to pay bills he gets angry anyway and blames me for not managing our money well. He dominates while giving the illusion that I am totally in control.”

My Spouse Controls or Dominates In Sexual Ways

A frustrated woman wrote about her current spouse, “He pouts if I refuse sex, even for legitimate reasons such as a bad headache or an illness. He then blames me for the lack of sex in our relationship. The pressure to have sex is immense and yet he is very distant emotionally when it comes to sex. I could be anyone; he just needs a body to satisfy his need. There's always the lingering threat that he will get back into porn if I don't satisfy his need.”

A respondent said about her former husband, “He withdrew all emotional support. He withdrew all sexual relations, including simple things such as sitting near, kissing, etc., not just intercourse.”

Another wrote of her former spouse, “Sex was his way or not at all.”

More to Come…

This article serves as part 1 of a three article series.

Part Two will focus on how control and domination affects the spouse that is subjected to that behavior.

Part Three will focus on how to deal with a dominating or controlling spouse to stop that behavior.


We realize that a person demonstrating one or more of the above actions occasionally does not mean that he or she is controlling or dominating. None of us is perfect and each of us can display less than ideal behavior at times. Therefore, if you feel that you may be dominated or controlled but are not sure, take a free assessment. Reach it by clicking this link.

We would love to help your marriage, whether there is criticism, control, infidelity, or any other problem, please call us toll free at 866-903-0990, or email us at

Publication date: January 25, 2013