My Abuser Says I’m “Controlling”

by | Abuse Literacy

Why does my husband say I'm controlling

Does your abuser call you controlling? You are not alone. Many emotional abuse and betrayal victims are labeled as “controlling” by their abusers and the abuser’s enablers.

Why Does My Abuser Say I’m Controlling?

Abusers shift blame to victims by saying that they are controlling.

This takes the focus off of the abuser, and makes it seem like the victim is the real problem in the relationship.

But What If I’m Actually Controlling?

Safety-seeking behaviors are often mislabeled as “controlling”. Betrayed women do not feel safe. Safety is the foundation for health and happiness, so women will do everything they can to seek safety.

For some women, this means monitoring their partner’s communication, activities, and behaviors. This is completely understandable, because when a man has cheated on his partner or otherwise abused her, he isn’t trustworthy anymore. Victims feel like they have to rely on their own actions to be sure of the truth.

Do Safety-Seeking Behaviors Work?

While safety-seeking behaviors, like checking your partner’s phone or monitoring his location, may seem to bring a degree of peace of mind, these behaviors are not going to provide long-term safety.

In a relationship, trust is what brings safety and you cannot trust someone who repeatedly lies to you.

Instead, women can set safety boundaries.

What Are Safety Boundaries?

Safety boundaries are courageous actions that women take to separate themselves from abuse. Rather than monitoring partners to determine who they need to react, women can get to a state of safety and peace by setting boundaries.

BTR Supports Betrayal & Abuse Victims

At BTR, we understand how infuriating it is to be called “controlling” by an abusive partner. We also know how confusing it can be to wonder if you are actually a controlling person.

Empowerment through knowledge and consistent support are key to finding the peace that you deserve. The Betrayal Trauma Recovery Group has multiple, live sessions every day, in every time zone. Join today and receive the support that you need as you begin your journey to healing.

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  1. Kayla

    Please my husband of 13 years has always been abusive but lately he’s mad because he says I’m controlling. HELP

    • Anne Blythe

      Have you considered Center For Peace? It’s the only men’s program we recommend. You’re not controlling – that’s what he says to gaslight you into complying:). We love you! Welcome!

  2. Naomi

    My husband of 23 years has constantly abused me verbally and emotionally and now that I’m standing up for myself he calls me controlling but he still is the one being cruel and doing detrimental things to our marriage like constant lying cheating hiding drug use. This is awful. It is so heartbreaking and I wish I knew how to stop loving him and just be able to cut myself free of his unchanging abusive behaviors.


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