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Controlling people.

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posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 11:22 AM
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Not sure if this is exactly the right place to post this but an interesting peice about controlling people ie, people who try to control others/control freaks. Having had more than my fair share of such individuals in my life I would be interested in other peoples feedback about this subject.

michaelprescott.typepad.com...

PS Scroll down to the next blog extract for a further look at the subject in question.




posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 04:35 PM
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I'm glad to see this brought out for discussion. My name is Benevolent Heretic and I am a controlling person!


Whenever I take one of those personality tests (like the Myers-Briggs thing), I end up being in the category of the Executive or the Driver or Dominant or Powerful... You know... The Controller!


I was very hesitant to own this moniker at first. In fact, I asked all my friends to evaluate the tests and tell me they were full of crap (I tried to control the test results!) When I flat out asked my friends if I was a Controller and they replied "yes", I knew I was going to have to accept it.

That was about 12 years ago. And now that I am aware of this trait of mine, and have accepted and embraced it, I have been able to work with it and I find I'm not nearly as annoying as I used to be!


In my opinion, the most important thing is to realize that it's not my place to control others. The only thing I can truly control is myself. It's disrespectful and insecure to try to control others.

I used to have to know everything that was going on and who said what and how they felt. It was like I thought if I KNEW everything, it gave me the illusion of control. I was very uncomfortable not knowing. And if I found out that someone said, "Don't tell BH, but..." I would freak out! I'd be out of control and get really mad because someone didn't want me to know something! They were getting between me and my need to know!


But I am totally comfortable with my controllong tendencies now. I don't try to control others... Well my husband might disagree to a degree... But when I do try, he can safely call me on it and I can see it and stop. But I'm a LOT better than I used to be, and a lot more pleasant, too!


I didn't have time to read all of the article, but I'll catch up on it later. More later...



posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 04:57 PM
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Wow! The people in that article have it BAD!


It's one thing to be a controller and know it, accept and even embrace it and be able to recognize the symptoms and do something about it, but the worst thing is a controller who isn't aware of it. They can be pretty scary people.

From your source:



The next time you find yourself under attack by someone who seems to assume that he knows your own mind better than you do -- someone who divines your motives and tells you what you are "really" thinking and feeling -- just realize that you are in the presence of a Controller.

And unless you want to be a puppet in his private puppet show, the best thing to do may be to walk away.


That is SO true!


Good read!



posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 05:14 PM
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It is very true. Especially when others use "control" issues to compensate for their phobia and paranoia. But tread lightly. After all, we're approaching a very sensitive subject matter especially when it has to do with power issues. Some don't like to bring anything of the sort up around here.



[edit on 18-2-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 07:02 PM
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Reading over your source again, Ubermunche, I found this particularly interesting:



What matters is that he thinks everybody else in the whole world agrees with him or, at least, should agree with him. And whenever he encounters disagreement, as he inevitably will, he feels just as threatened and betrayed and abandoned as the Controllers did in our above examples. Any show of independent thinking on the part of anyone anywhere is enough to incite feelings of fear, disorientation, and even rage.
...
Accordingly, his first response to any disagreement is to accuse the other person of dishonesty.
...
Anyone who has spent time on the Internet knows that this response to an expression of disagreement is all too common. For most of us, the accusation that someone else is a liar is a last resort, a conclusion reluctantly arrived at only when all other explanations have failed. But for the Controller, it is the first resort -- the first and perhaps only explanation of any difference of opinion.


I'm glad you posted this because I hadn't done very much research on this personality type, even thought I am one. I remember many years ago getting angry when someone disagreed with me but never to the extent that the article goes into. I think I just never had it "that bad".

I know these days, as I'm comfortable and aware of my controlling tendencies, I welcome disagreement and many times I change my mind once I've had a good talk with someone. But the people in the article sound downright scary.



posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 08:41 PM
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There are so many ways to approach the issue of "Controlling People".

Is it a neurotic tendency where one must feel in control at times? Is it a need to feel superior? Does controlling others even indicate a degree of self perceived superiority? Is it an indication of an insecurity?

I think all of the aforementioned apply at times, but for the most part it is the need to want to take care of things our selves. I am not a controlling person whatsoever and I always look for a group effort on different tasks. I work well with others in charge, and I work well while I am in charge. But my premise is always one of equal effort and accountability on all ends.

BH, you really do not come across as the "controlling" type. You seem to be more of a "laissez faire" approach, and what will be, will be. Very interesting.


I'll respond with more later.

Very interesting.




posted on Feb, 18 2007 @ 09:15 PM
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Originally posted by chissler
Does controlling others even indicate a degree of self perceived superiority? Is it an indication of an insecurity?


For me, it was both of these. I felt insecure and I needed to know everything and feel like I had a handle on everything (esle feel "out of control"). And I also gave off an air of superiority so people would let me be in control. Really, I felt inferior...



BH, You seem to be more of a "laissez faire" approach, and what will be, will be.


I am, now. I'm all "whatever".
But that comes from many years of working on letting go of controlling others. I'm very controlling in my home, of my dogs, of myself and sometimes it slips out onto my husband, but he's pretty good at "alerting" me.


Ubermunche, I'm curious how you see yourself in this light. Are you a controller? What interested you in this topic?



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 02:34 AM
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Well thanks all for the feed back, interesting insights and some brave admissions lol.

Personally I find that there can be some leakage into 'controlling behaviour' from people who are really just dominant or natural leaders in a social setting, the type of people surrounding you may be crucial as to whether the controlling behaviour is allowed to take root, because most of us will only put up with it for so long. The truly scary people are the ones who deliberately manipulate their environment and the people allowed into it so as to give the illusion that they have control.

Benevolant, I have a close family member who displays similar tendencies to yours at times and probably gets far more leeway and advantages than most of us but this is tempered by total remorse when she realises she has gone too far. Conversly I also had a friend who displayed what I would class as low level controlling behaviour, eventually after years of escalation and reultant hassle I discarded loyalty and walked, the deciding factor for me was pretended remorse used....to control people.

I'm sure your traits fall more in the dominant/natural leader camp rather than anything sinister, another big giveaway is you are self aware about these traits, truly controlling people find it impossible to attain self awareness and would rather tie themselves in knots to rationalise their behaviour and criticise their victims response.

[edit on 19-2-2007 by ubermunche]

[edit on 19-2-2007 by ubermunche]



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 02:42 AM
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Ubermunche, I'm curious how you see yourself in this light. Are you a controller? What interested you in this topic?


In all fairness, while essentially I'm a very easy going, generally passive type of bloke, I do not like being told what to do and have a very independant streak, therefore my own personality traits can also sometimes leak into passive aggression, my only defense being that if I feel I'm not dealing with reasonable people their is no onus on me to 'play fair ' with them either. Lol yes I'm probably rationalising too.



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 05:21 AM
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I have been in a leadership position my entire life, starting in HS Football, the Marines and now the Police Force, and yet my wife says I am one of the least controlling people she knows.

So much has happened in my life, both tragic and wonderful, I guess that down deep I know I have weathered it and will again if need be. One of my favorite sayings is "Don't sweat the small stuff."

I have found that the little things we might fret over today, will become insignificant in time, so why try and control anything that is not really necessary?

Just my take folks...

Semper



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 08:51 AM
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Originally posted by ubermunche
Personally I find that there can be some leakage into 'controlling behaviour' from people who are really just dominant or natural leaders


Been talking to my husband about this and we agree that I have a pretty dominant personality but I'm not what this guy in the article is talking about. Still all the personality tests say I'm a controller. The article example is more of a psychological or psychiatric diagnosis, rather than a personality style. I have never been as delusional as these examples.

But if we're walking across the street and my husband grabs my arm I really REALLY don't like it. He doesn't do that much anymore...
I also don't like being told what to do and I will do the opposite, even if I don't want to, just to prove that "you aren't the boss of me".



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 10:05 AM
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Originally posted by semperfortis
I have been in a leadership position my entire life, starting in HS Football, the Marines and now the Police Force, and yet my wife says I am one of the least controlling people she knows.


That is good to hear. I have always considered there to be two types of leaders.

▪ Controlling: it's my way or the highway type leader.
▪ Laissez Faire: complete group effort.

With the latter of the two, you are able to utilize the individual to the best of their ability. If we are in a leadership position and we are attempting to control everyone, we are undermining their ability, therefore undermining our efforts. Whether it is a group setting or a relationship between two people, the abilities of both need to be permitted and respected if the relationship is going to prosper into everything it can be. That is unless one personality is perfectly fine with a dominant personality.

The worst leaders I've ever been in contact with are the types that want to do everything themselves, and "we" are just in the way. A strong leader looks to his group for support and understands that he or she is a worthy asset. That, of course, is a generalization for any setting.


Originally posted by semperfortis
"Don't sweat the small stuff."


Precisely. There are always bigger things at play, it is important to keep that in mind.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
Been talking to my husband about this and we agree that I have a pretty dominant personality but I'm not what this guy in the article is talking about. Still all the personality tests say I'm a controller. The article example is more of a psychological or psychiatric diagnosis, rather than a personality style.


Yeah I see the difference you refer to. I agree that there is a difference in the degree of controlling. Some are in fact a simple personality style, where others may be on another level where it is psychological. Interesting.


Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
But if we're walking across the street and my husband grabs my arm I really REALLY don't like it. He doesn't do that much anymore...
I also don't like being told what to do and I will do the opposite, even if I don't want to, just to prove that "you aren't the boss of me"


I really don't think anybody likes to be told what to do. To tell someone what to do, we are assuming that we in fact know what is right. I am in the process of working with children who have behavioural issues and are in conflict with the law on all levels, my goal is to empower themselves so they can help turn their own life around. The first rule is that we never tell them what to do. People are told what to do at all corners of life, and frankly it is unnecessary most of the times.

I've thought about this for some time, and honestly I was having a tough time actually deciding where I would place. But I've come to some conclusions. My personality is the type that can mesh it almost all settings. I prefer to be in a situation where equality is appreciated, but I am more of the laissez faire mentality. I don't mind being told what to do, but I tend to make up my own mind on my thought process and actions. My girlfriend does not always appreciate being told what to do, and I am rarely guilty of doing it.



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 10:47 AM
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I guess most of us encounter controlling individuals from time to time.

Have to say, it's been my observation that the controlling individuals I've encountered have been totally OUT of control, when it comes to themselves and their own lives.

I really cannot bear to be around these people. They are destructive & divisive within any group or neighbourhood, workplace, etc.

Lately, controlling individuals have been described as suffering Narcissistic Personality Disorder. There are several sites which provide check-lists of NPD traits. The advice seems to be to get as far away from these people as possible because they reputedly cannot be 'cured'.

We have a NPD neighbour. She's widely described as 'insane'. She is hopeless at virtually everything she attempts, yet considers herself an expert concerning everyone else's business. She makes endless 'rules' and demonises anyone she feels has breached them --- yet at the same time she deliberately ignores her own rules, as in: "Residents may NOT park their cars in this spot ! ", after which she parks there herself.

Her entire life and energies are devoted to controlling others and making them as miserable as possible. She's named in a State government PDF file as being responsible for victimising a co-worker until he finally had a heart attack and was hospitalised. She furiously attempts to control every aspect of her neighbours' lives. She forges signatures on letters of complaint which she sends to the local council regarding neighbours' pets. She orgasms when she's able to force neighbours to surrender their pets, their rights, their privacy, their peace of mind. Others' misery is elixir to her. Nothing makes her happier than when she's able to destroy the happiness of others.

So it's not just 'control' -- it's vicious, devious, bullying behaviour.

Other controlling individuals I've encountered have utilized alcohol or physical violence or malicious gossip in order to maintain 'control'.

They get away with it and grow steadily worse because, as someone in an above post remarked: people make exceptions for them, as in: " Don't say anything because he's drunk. If you annoy him he'll start smashing things or will make a scene."

Malicious gossips are able to control their families, co-workers and neighbourhoods because anyone who contradicts or otherwise opposes their nonsense will have their character destroyed. It works as effective deterrent and reaches the point where all those they know are especially nice to them for fear of becoming the next target.

Others use threats of suicide as means of maintaining 'control'.

It's been theorised that those intent on controlling others are fearful of being themselves controlled.

I think the controlling personality is far more insidious than that: they are ruthless, cunning bullies; they are throwbacks to our animal ancestry; they respect no-one; they stop at nothing to have their own way; the only pain they recognise is their OWN. Meanwhile, they enjoy the pain of others. It's a gene I'd love to see eliminated from the pool.



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 12:13 PM
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Benevolent, honest I wan't trying to imply any kind of link between you and these extreme examples, I hope that's not how I came across.


Dock6, yes there are really extreme, really scary examples of people who to me are walking talking radioactive bombs, corrosive and engulfing, willing to side step any and every moral and ethical boundary to perpetrate their own agenda by whatever means. It's hard not to conjure words live evil and degenerate when addressing their actions. Too many of them around to ever be truly complacent.



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 01:48 PM
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Originally posted by ubermunche
Benevolent, honest I wan't trying to imply any kind of link between you and these extreme examples, I hope that's not how I came across.



Oh, no. I didn't think that. No problem at all!
Don't be sad...



posted on Feb, 19 2007 @ 11:59 PM
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It would be insulting to Benevolent Heretic to echo that nor did I intend any connection between him/her and the examples of controlling bullies noted in my post. Anyone with the honesty, insight and humour to volunteer (as BH has) that they are forceful/controlling personalities is clearly not the negative, destructive type of individual we've been discussing.

'Controlling' is not terribly specific.

For example, there are many in society who were handed too much responsibility, too often, too young. When things went wrong, it was these children who were held responsible by their less than responsible parents/carers.

These poor children were blamed for the actions (and accidents, etc.) of their siblings, just as they were forced to bear the brunt quite often of others' (neighbours, family, educators, etc.) disapproval of the family as a whole.

Often, these children were parents --- to their own parents' children.

And they were their own parents, too! They raised themselves and their siblings -- and quite often acted as parents to their own parents.

These children are often described as 'old before their time'. They were robbed of their childhood.

Naturally, when these children grow older, they suffer non-specific anxiety. They are unable to goof around mindlessly and irresponsibly, as their peers do. Instead, they are constantly sweeping their environment for potential problems, in order-- as usual-- to 'control' and 'avoid' the damage.

In order to prevent problems before they occur and in order to safeguard those whom they value, these people do indeed ' like to know everything that's going on '. It's the only way they can oversee potential problems AND it's the only way they can relieve their habitual, 'free-ranging' anxiety.

It's an anxiety that never releases its hold on them. It gives them no rest. They feel responsible for everyone, everything, all the time.

No-one gives them a break and it doesn't occur to them to give themselves a break. They wouldn't know how, even though they're desperately over-stretched from being on mental-alert lifelong.

For example, they may ask: " Where are you going? What time are you leaving? Who will be driving? Have you had the tyres and brakes serviced? Which road are you taking? Where will you be stopping? Does such and such's husband/mother/wife know that they'll be with you? Are they ok with that? So-and-so is a problem, you know that --- they've been arrested for having drugs. I know you say they've changed, but I don't think they have. Therefore, I don't think you should include that person on your trip. If you're pulled over by the police and they're searched, then you'll be under suspicion too. There's no way you'll be accepted into the Air Force/Police Academy/medical school etc. after that, even if you're perfectly innocent. I don't think you should include them on the trip. Promise me you won't let them in your car ! "

Here, we can see their mind at work. They're gaining absolutely NO profit or reward. They're simply trying to cover all the bases, for everyone, all the time. To make sure everyone is Ok. To make sure --- as far as humanly possible -- that nothing negative will happen to anyone they value.

But they receive no thanks. Instead, they're accused of being 'busy-bodies', 'interfering', 'controlling', 'neurotic', 'over analytical', etc. People talk about them behind their backs. Others resent them. They are ostracised quite often. They are excluded.

Most of all, they are lied to. People keep secrets from them.

And nothing creates anxiety in the overly-responsible individual as much as suspecting or actually knowing that they are being prevented from protecting others.

Because that's all they're trying and trying to do. Protect. Guard. Guide.

They are like farm dogs that are never off-duty.

These people are yes -- controlling -- but in a good way. They're like security-guards that have been forced into service lifelong, without pay, without thanks, without vacation, without assistance (for it's the willing horse that does the most work while the others loaf in their harnesses).

These 'controlling' individuals were press-ganged into service while still small children themselves. They've never known any other way of life. They never had a chance.

And even though those around them complain, they would be lost without their constant-parent taking care of all eventualities for them.

So there are many types of 'controlling' individuals.

Naturally, having had to take an adult role from early childhood, these 'controllers' have strong character and personality. They are forceful because they've had to be: they've had to carry others' weight all their lives.

The only time they're appreciated quite often, is when they cease to be around. That's when those whom they've been carrying have to get off their backsides and start taking care of their own lives and problems.

It's a shame this type of 'controlling' individual could not be provided the opportunity to walk away and take care of themselves, instead of working themselves until they drop.

If this sort-of applies to you, Benevolent Heretic, I hope you're learning to close the door on others' problems. Because as you must be aware, others will always have problems. And they won't learn to take responsibility for themselves if you're there to fix everything up for everyone all the time.

A study of Huna is helpful for this well-meaning type of 'controlling' individual, for it teaches even the hyper-responsible individual that within themselves they have a 'little' them: the authentic-them whose young voice has never been allowed to be heard and whose needs have never been considered.

Instead of taking care of everyone around them, the hyper-responsible person (aka: 'controlling' individual) needs to establish communication with the little person they once were ..... and take care of that young-them, make friends with it, encourage it to grow and blossom. Nothing better than having your very best friend right there inside you, and being able to give it hugs, smiles and treats until it knows it's loved, valid and valued :-)





[edit on 20-2-2007 by Dock6]



posted on Feb, 20 2007 @ 07:21 AM
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Dock6, that was so nice to read! And just so everyone knows, I'm not offended in the least by anything anyone has said here. I volunteered the information because I have come to terms with it and have worked on it for many years and it's really not a problem in my life anymore at all. As chissler noted, I'm pretty mellow these days.
Maybe a little too mellow sometimes
in that I don't concern myself with people other than myself and my family and friends. And them, only to a healthy degree.

I was the youngest of 7 children, so I didn't have the 'parenting of siblings' issues, but I did mature very early because of abuse issues (from about 4 different people/angles). I grew up real quick. And my "need to know" came from protecting, not my siblings, but myself. If I knew everything to expect, if I could see 360 degrees around me and know what was coming at me, if I could have my hands constantly feeling out the possibilities, then I could protect myself from whatever was coming at me.

Everything you said, Dock6 applies, except to protecting myself instead of other people.

And of course, as a child, I blamed the abuse on myself. If only I had been more aware. If only I had known what to expect, had thought it out better. If only I hadn't been stupid! (Of course, I've been in various counseling off and on since I was about 14 until probably 5 years ago to work out these issues. So, I don't feel that way anymore.)

I also took a retreat type thing about 20 years ago wherein we made the connection you spoke about with the child we once were (and still are). I still carry the picture of my sweet little 6-year-old self in my purse
and I take care of her now whereas others, whose job it was to do so, failed. So... it's all good now.
And as you can tell, it's easy for me to talk about.

It used to be very difficult to find that people had kept secrets from me, though! What a betrayal of my "need to know"!!! My work group was going on an outing and I found out that there were plans to go play Laser Tag while we were in another city. But they had purposely kept it from me because they didn't think I'd want to play. They were just going to spring it on me! I learned that one girl in particular had said, "Don't tell BH."
I hated her for that!

It sounds strange to me now because I'm so "whatever" in my attitude. So these feelings of controlling behavior can be overcome. At least on the scale as I have experienced.

And I didn't mean for this thread to be a "BH disclosure" thing. But I think some of my experiences are relevant. Sorry that I'm talking about myself so much!



posted on Feb, 20 2007 @ 07:40 AM
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BH,

We love it when you talk about yourself...

Not only do you make it interesting, but remember; people are never that different. I have found your thoughts to be relevant in my own life...

Semper



posted on Feb, 20 2007 @ 11:38 PM
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That I usually end up with a controlling woman


The truth is control is only an illusion, if it makes her happy so be it.



posted on Feb, 21 2007 @ 08:30 AM
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Originally posted by Royal76
The truth is control is only an illusion, if it makes her happy so be it.


Well, control certainly can be an illusion. But generalizing your experiences does not give a clear indication of this phenomenon. As members have shown, some people who are controlling have merely inherited a characteristic of their personality. While others are more of an extremity and can merit a psychological diagnosis. This is very real.

My girlfriend would always yell at me early in our relationship for something I always did. She said it took her some time to catch on, but when she did, it was so obvious. If we were discussing something, I would mischievously manipulate the situation. I would take my point of view, manipulate her into thinking it was her point of view, and then agree with her on it. She was happy because she got her own way, and I was happy because well, she got her way.

It is much tougher these days but I think we both understand now that neither of us are prepared to be "controlled" on any level. Which makes things easy between us.

So yes, controlling can be an illusion sometimes. But I disagree with the generalization.




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