A marriage is no place for a silent partner


I think I have a problem. My husband is a very controlling man, although he will never admit to it. I love him so I overlook a lot of what he does. He basically appears to think that his is the only opinion that means anything to anyone. If we are around other people, he seems to take over any conversation. I personally find his behavior hard to understand. If I mention anything to him about his behavior, he comes back with “I can’t do anything right.”

I do not understand how he thinks that what he does is OK, so to some extent I just go along. I tell myself that he’s a good man and he has other good qualities that outweigh some of the other not so good stuff. I’m just tired of him getting by with his manners and doing so little to correct it.

I am tired of not having an opinion that he respects and I am getting tired of him walking over me, talking over me. I do wonder if love is enough to get through this. I am a patient person by nature, so I guess I could manage to shut up and shut down for a long time. Give me a hint as to what to do.


It is difficult to live with a controlling person and you do have the right to stand up for yourself as marriage is an agreement to love honor and respect each other. I do not feel that you believe that you are being honored and respected.

I would suggest talking to someone about how you feel and figure out a strategy to make this situation better. It sounds like you have been passively waiting to be heard, and with a strong, possibly aggressive, communicator it just does not work. You could read some material on assertiveness and correct your rather non-committal way of communicating. We do have to learn a few things about communication to actually do it well.

You husband knows you pretty well and he knows if he calls you out with “I can’t do anything right” that you will probably back down and ignore the behavior once again. It seems that you both know your parts so well, that nothing changes and you limp along with poor communication. A good counselor would help you to sort out your part of this problem and at some point it makes sense that the both of you brush up on your communication skills. If you love him work on your part of the problem and be more direct with “There is a problem in our communication. I’m going to work on my part and I hope that we both can fix this communication problem.”

To submit problems, contact Juanita Sanchez, psychotherapist, by email at [email protected] or through High Plains Journal.