“Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,” mused Shakespeare in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. But what happens when that mind is clouded with doubts, anxieties, and the need to control?
In relationships, striking a balance between love, trust, and the freedom to be an individual is paramount. Yet, sometimes, a seemingly unquenchable desire to monitor and control the actions of one’s partner can overshadow this balance. But why? Let’s delve deeper into understanding the motivations behind each of the poll answers.
Yes, I tend to be controlling.
Fear and Anxiety
Relationships are a beautiful yet complicated dance of emotions. Sometimes, feelings of uncertainty combined with heightened anxiety lead to the fear of losing a partner. This fear often morphs into a consistent, obsessive need to know and control their every move. These individuals often justify their actions as expressions of love and care. However, is it really love if it’s stemming from a place of fear?
Possession Over Partnership
There’s a particular brand of relationship personality that thinks of their partner as a prized possession. They frequently use phrases such as “He is only mine!” or “She is only mine!” This subconscious positioning often results in drawing imaginary borders like “Be home by 6, or don’t come back!” and constant check-ins: “Where are you? When will you be home?”. To them, love is often equated with ownership, and boundaries can quickly blur.
The Illusion of Control
A study conducted in 2018 found that 34% of Americans admit to checking their partner’s phone without their knowledge. And while technology makes it easier than ever to keep tabs, in close relationships, such control often creates an illusion. We might feel that we have a grip on things, but in reality, it’s almost impossible to control another individual fully. And that’s where the paradox lies; the more one tries to control, the more out of control they feel.
No, I don’t tend to be controlling.
Trust Is The Foundation
For those who answered ‘No’, they often view trust as the cornerstone of their relationships. As relationship expert Dr. John Gottman says, “Trust is built in very small moments.” For these individuals, these small moments are sacred, and they choose to build upon them rather than letting distrust erode them away.
Belief in Individuality
In the United States, there’s a strong cultural emphasis on individual freedom and autonomy. A 2019 survey found that 78% of Americans believe in giving their partners space and freedom in a relationship. Those who aren’t controlling often value this independence, both for themselves and their partners. They understand that a relationship consists of two unique individuals coming together, not two people merging into a single entity.
Less Stress, More Happiness
Not feeling the need to control also brings with it a certain level of peace. Anxiety and constant worry can be exhausting. By not indulging in monitoring every move of a partner, one is also freeing themselves from unnecessary stress. After all, laughter, fun, and relaxation have often been voted as some of the top relationship goals by couples across the USA!
Your voice in the dance of relationships
In the dance of relationships, choices are at every turn. Whether one leans towards maintaining a grip of control due to insecurities or fear, or champions the values of trust and freedom, it’s vital to reflect on one’s motivations. Relationships, in their essence, are an opportunity to grow, understand, and foster mutual respect. By continually checking in with oneself and one’s partner, we can navigate the intricate maze of emotions to find a balanced, harmonious path.
Now, it’s over to you, dear reader. How do you resonate with these perspectives? Dive into the poll and let your voice be heard. Every vote contributes to a broader understanding of how we, as a society, view and experience our romantic relationships.
After voting, don’t keep those thoughts to yourself! Share your insights, stories, or even just a simple “I voted!” in the comments. We’re eager to hear what you think. And if you’re curious about where you stand among your peers, take a moment to view the poll stats. By coming together in this way, we foster a community where sharing, understanding, and mutual respect are paramount. Here’s to making sense of the heart’s complex rhythms, one vote at a time!