When you meet someone you truly like, there is the love you feel for the other person and the desire to be with them in some form. When the liking is mutual a relationship can start.
Within a relationship, if you like the other person, you can start to try to control the other person to be with them or to be happy in the relationship. The need to control the other person can happen in subtle ways. It can be with the intention to help the other person, it can be to protect the relationship, it can be so you keep liking the other or any other reason.
Although the reasons for controlling the other person can be positive, it is always a burden to the other person. The other feels the pressure of your control and might resist the attempt to control him or her or go along with it and move with the attempt to control. No matter how the other responds, no matter what your intention may be, the other is always happier in the long-term when he or she is not controlled. Always, without exception, whether they say they like it or not.
Controlling your partner is a burden to them. If you really love your partner, do not try to control or change them but let them be free in any way they want to.
Maybe the relationship is not meant to be, maybe your partner changes over time. The outcome is irrelevant, the process crucial. Let your partner be free to choose and live his or her life, with or without you.
When you have responsibilities together then talk about how you each would like to fulfill the responsibility. When you are not aligned, then the person that expects more need to take the responsibility that they expect more or change their expectations. You do not need to take on the other’s responsibilities. Not only let your partner free in the relationship, but also how they handle their responsibilities or work together with you.
In a normal non-abusive relationship, your choices are always: accept the other person in their freedom, talk about their free actions, or leave the relationship. You do not need to accept the control over your life and freedom the other may currently have. It is not wrong to discuss your preferences or how you want to live in freedom.
Not only let yourself live in freedom but also let your partner be free and live together in freedom. Sometimes that may not be possible and you give in to their expectations. Very normal if that happens once in a while but not if that is the standard. A relationship should be two people that are free, living together in freedom, instead of two people living in bondage together, that are not happy because of their bondage.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Is my partner accepting the real me?
- Is our relationship enhancing my freedom?
- Is my relationship bringing more freedom or more bondage?
- Is my relationship helping or hurting me or my partner?