Dealing with a possessive boyfriend is a serious issue and should be addressed as quickly as possible. This is because the nature of this problem tends to escalate over time and needs to be dealt with before the issue gets out of hand.
A possessive boyfriend may play on your insecurities and manipulate you into doing what he wants.
He may disguise his controlling tenancies as his undying love for you and make it difficult for you to assert your opinions and feelings.
A Bit of Possessiveness is Okay
Before we proceed, let’s get one thing clear. A little bit of possessiveness is acceptable in any relationship.
In-fact, a bit of possessiveness can help add that element of spice to a relationship. It indicates that your boyfriend truly cares about you.
Don’t agree? Okay, imagine your boyfriend not caring about anything you do – he does not bother about what you wear, where you go or what you do. He offers no personal opinion and simply agrees to everything you say or do. Now won’t that get really boring after a certain period of time? Of-course, it would!
You want a guy who cares about you, has a genuine concern for you and is protective of you. And his protective behaviour often will come off as unsolicited advice which sometimes you might find annoying.
For example, he might not want you to wear a dress that is a bit too revealing. What he is trying to do here is protect your image. He wants you to come across as a classy girl. Now this can come across as possessive behaviour, but deep down, it has an element of genuine concern hidden behind it.
The problem arises when a guy takes this too far. And when that happens, it is natural for you to start feeling suffocated in the relationship.
Now that we have that cleared, let’s look at a few signs that indicate possessiveness on his part.
Signs of a Possessive Boyfriend
Although different men will exhibit different patterns of behavior, generally you can spot a possessive boyfriend by the following behaviors and traits:
1.) He stalks you when you do things without him
He doesn’t like you going out without him and either tries to stop you, or calls you continuously while you are out.
He may be aggressive in his behavior in stopping you or may play on your guilt feelings by making grand gestures such as cooking you a ‘romantic meal’ when he knows you are planning on going out.
Other tactics include making you feel sorry for him by being upset, worried and insecure every time you attempt an outing of your own.
When you are out, he constantly calls you or texts you every other hour to see what you are up to.
2.) He tries isolating you
He says that your friends are a ‘bad influence’ on you and dislikes them.
He may find reasons to make you doubt your friendships, may become upset or agitated when you speak to them or see them or make comments about how you behave in their company.
All of the above plays a role in him isolating you and in turn, causing you to feel that you only have him. Over time, you may find that your relationships with friends and family are suffering. Causing you to feel alone.
3.) He tries to control your life
He keeps a close eye on what you drink, spend and/or do and condemns behaviour in you that he sees as ‘bad’ or ‘wrong’. This may lead you to do as he says to avoid confrontation and arguments especially if he is aggressive.
Over time you may notice that you don’t do anything he doesn’t like in order to keep him happy.
If you find that you feel you need his permission for everything, he is definitely succeeding in controlling you. This is not love, but control.
4.) He is accusatory
He is upset if you speak to other men or is jealous of your male friends.
He may accuse you of cheating, try to convince you that your male friends are after something else or check you phone to ensure you are not speaking to them.
5.) He is abusive
He is psychologically abusive, wearing down your confidence by calling you names, commenting on your looks, making you doubt yourself or telling you that no body loves you or likes you.
In this way he is playing on your insecurities in order to cause you to believe that you are worthless, causing you to be thankful for having him and as a result, making it difficult to leave him.
What To Do About a Possessive Boyfriend
How you deal with a possessive boyfriend depends on the scale of your boyfriend’s behaviour. His behaviour is often rooted in his insecurities and he is likely to be projecting them on to you.
If the case is mild, it will help explaining that in order to have a good relationship you both need some breathing space. Time apart will give you things to talk about and keep the relationship fresh. Remind him that you love him and love spending time with him, but to be happy you need your own life too.
However if you are faced with a more serious issue of possessiveness, the best thing to do would be to leave.
If your boyfriend is aggressive, either psychologically or physically you need to get out of that situation as soon as possible. This is not easy, so contacting a a counselor or woman’s protection group may be required in order for you to feel supported.
Make sure to talk to friends you trust if possible so that you are not alone and they are aware of your issues. This will not only help you feel stronger, but may protect you if things get out of hand.
Control is all about getting at your insecurities and making you feel helpless and submissive. If you feel leaving him is too difficult, that you may end up alone or you are feeling scared, it is most likely due to him diminishing your confidence. Take control of the situation, seek help and support and get out of the relationship.