Isolating a significant other from her friends or family, emotional blackmail and jealousy are some common signs of a controlling relationship, notes PsychCentral. A person may chip away at his partner’s self-esteem in order to keep up this control.
Isolation is often the first step toward establishing a controlling relationship, explains Psychology Today. It starts off with complaints about how often a partner hangs out with her best friends or work acquaintances. It seems charming at first, the idea that the partner wants to spend all his free time with her. However, this is the controlling partner's way of removing her support network and keeping her indebted to him.