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Is my boyfriend controlling or am I just unreasonable?
This is a complicated situation so I’m going to try to distill it as much as possible without losing too much ‘meat’.
My boyfriend and I have been together for about a year and we’ve had our ups and downs. We briefly broke up six months into the relationship while I did some working abroad but we had some issues before then.
Now, some of the problems we’ve had have been my fault and I have taken responsibility for them and tried to be better. But a recurring issue is that I feel he can be judgmental, controlling, and subtly manipulative to a fault sometimes.
Shortly after I returned from traveling, my Mom passed away kind of unexpectedly and he was very supportive of me throughout her brief illness and death. He’s a good man, and genuinely cares for me. The problem is, sometimes he cares me too much and it can take a controlling angle.
For example, when he visited me in Europe, he took it upon himself to go through my computer because he was suspicious of me. He found some personal messages I had written to friends about my feelings on our relationship, and found out that I had a one night stand with another man shortly after broke it off for a bit.
Since then, we’ve had several arguments over boundaries and what he can and cannot do as my partner. For example, now he’s CONSTANTLY looking over my shoulder to see who I’m talking to and what I’m talking about. He asked me delete my exes from FB because he felt threatened by them and I eventually did.This caused a fight though because I don’t think he has the right to tell me who I can and cannot speak to. But worse, when I’m having a personal conversation with a female friend or family member, he’ll look over my shoulder and accidentally see what we’re talking about and then get mad if he thinks I talk about him. Saying I don’t respect our relationship and our privacy. He’s paranoid that I’m constantly shit-talking him which isn’t true. And he makes me paranoid. I’m even nervous he’s going to find this.
Now I understand his feelings on this, and I’m trying to use more discretion. But I’ll admit, it makes me feel isolated from my friends because sometimes I need to talk to someone about my feelings and it feels good to vent. And I don’t think he has the right to spy on my personal chats, even if he doesn’t like the subject matter. Private is private and I actually do respect his privacy and don’t pry into his computer or phone even to ‘peek’. I’m an adult and need to be treated as such.
Tonight we argued about money. We came to South America to spend some time with his family after my Mom died. I went with him because he really wanted to go and I wanted to be with him but it has taken the wind out of my sails financially. This has upset him because I finally told him how bad my current situation is, and now he wants me to show him ALL of my financial documents so he can ‘help’ me. I told him absolutely not, we’re not married and I have no obligation to disclose that information to him, and he thinks I’m just being recalcitrant and unreasonable. I see this as a subconscious ploy on his part to ‘save’ me and make himself feel like a superman while really just kind of infantilizing me and making me feel like i’m helpless without his help and guidance.
Are my expectations unreasonable? How much privacy is a person entitled to in a committed relationship? This situation has me really stressed out and isolated and I feel like I’m walking on eggshells on the time.