Should you dump your overbearing other-half?
When to break up with someone is a personal choice, up there with paper or plastic, boxers or briefs. However, there are certain types of people who practically have "dump me" written across their foreheads. One of these types is the controller, the overbearing personality that dictates — or at least attempts to dictate — your every move. They treat you not as an equal, but like Pinocchio or Mario; someone they believe they can control. Knowing when to break up with someone like this can be tricky; they typically do not go quietly into the night. But it's possible to break up with them and be fair at the same time. So if you find yourself wanting to flee a controlling relationship, consider this 3 step process:
- Ask Them To Change: The question of when to break up with someone can quickly become moot if your partner is willing to change. But often they won't change on their own — they might not even realize that they need to change. This is why asking them is imperative. A simple "Can you change?" isn't likely to leave your relationship repaired, and — out of confusion — may merely lead your partner to change from jeans into something more formal. Instead, if you really want your partner to change, you need to tell them why. The best way to do this is to use the word "I"; it's much safer than the word "you," which tends to leave people defensive. Instead of saying, "You boss me around way too much!" try "I need the freedom to make my own decisions." If your partner is willing to change, then the breaking up can at least be put on the proverbial table for now.
- Tell Them Why It's Not Working: Fighting for your relationship can sometimes feel like presenting your case in a courtroom. In other words, you need to have enough evidence to back up your claim. Telling your partner that your relationship isn't working might not be too convincing. After all, your relationship is probably working for them. Instead, you need to tell them why it isn't working for you. Be open, honest and, above all, specific; describe to them how their controlling behavior makes you feel. You don't need to use finger puppets or create a Power Point presentation or anything, but be sure you get your point across. They'll either take the evidence seriously or they won't. And then and there, you'll know whether or not Operation Breakup should be commenced.
- Sever All Ties: If you partner is unwilling to change, unwilling to take your claims seriously and unable to be considerate of your needs and feelings, then it's probably time to walk away. Of course, you can stay, but you'll likely be miserable. Thus, your best option is to sever all ties with the person you are dating:; a break that isn't clean takes much longer to heal.
Still, knowing when to break up with someone doesn't always equate with how to break up with someone. So try to be as cordial as possible, and remember these three points:
- Do it in person, if possible.
- Keep the focus on your needs instead of their faults.
- Don't suggest you still stay friends — that keeps the ties from being severed.
When to break up with someone is something only you can decide, but a relationship that is one-sided and controlling is like the couch potato who smokes three packs of cigarettes a day and exists soley on Wild Cherry Pepsi and pork rinds; it's not at all healthy.
To learn more about when to break up with someone, click here.