When married to a controlling person, we already talked about being understanding of their motive and setting good boundaries but now I want to help you stand up for yourself in a way that's effective.
Please purchase the book Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, my ministry partner. It can transform your marriage and the way you approach your spouse.
WHAT MOTIVATES HUSBANDS?
In one word, respect. Sure, women want respect too however the University of Washington studied 2000 people for 20 years and these findings repeatedly revealed that the vast majority of husbands stonewalled and withdrew during conflict and the vast majority of wives complained and criticized, the facts need to govern our interpretations.
They discovered that men are motivated by respect and women are motivated by love.
If your husband is a controller, stand up for yourself, set boundaries, learn how to say no but do it respectfully. How? It's in the packaging.
Don't yell, call names, scream, blow up or be disrespectful.
State your position calmly and carefully with a quiet spirit.
1st Peter 3:4 (Wives)You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.
Your gentle and quiet spirit speak his God-given love language of respect. Contempt and anger will never produce anything fruitful. Stonewalling or shutting down will also deteriorate the relationship. Stand up, stand firm but with a quiet and gentle spirit.
He may say, "If you respect me, you will do what I want.", don't fall into that trap of control. Your response could be "I respect you but disagree with you and must say no to your request. I hope you can understand."
WHAT MOTIVATES WIVES?
In one word, love. If your wife is controlling, you will not gain any ground by being unloving, retreating, shutting down or attacking. She will double down on her controlling behavior. Rather, you should stand up for yourself in a gentle and loving way.
Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.
You can stand up for yourself, say no and set new boundaries but if you do it with anger, force or manipulation, she will rebel and potentially get worse. You will find yourself in the crazy cycle over and over again with her disrespect and your unloving response unhinged.
She may say "If you 'love me' you will do what I want.", don't fall into that trap. That's a form of control. I would say this "Honey, I love you and I disagree with you. Just because I won't comply with your demand or request doesn't mean I don't love you.", then kindly walk away.
Don't raise your voice, yell or lose your temper. That will undermine your mission.
GET GOOD AT ROUNDING THE BASES
Rounding the bases breaks any cycle of control on either end. You can really see it work when both are loving and respectful. The baseball diamond we created forces each person to have a compromising spirit as you SELECT and issue, CONFIRM the details around the issue, OFFER SOLUTIONS to the issue, negotiate the RESOLVE the issue. SCORE
For more information on rounding the bases go to www.daretobedifferent.com/marriage-seminar
Be consistent with your stance and your temperament and over time, they will fall in line and break their habit of control. If not, seek counsel from one of our certified mentors or a counselor near you.
We pray God's blessings on you and your home.
Matt and Pam