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What are some signs of a controlling personality?

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Quick Answer

A controlling personality manifests itself in constant criticism, snooping, excessive jealousy and ridicule, explains Psychology Today. The person being controlled feels increasingly confused, emotionally exhausted, guilty, inadequate and unworthy. Power and control begin subtly, often disguised as helpful, charming or benevolent behavior that eventually induces the victim to feel and think the way the controlling person wants. A controlling person carefully and deliberately grooms the victim to feel inferior and fortunate at the same time.

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Full Answer

Emotional control is so complex that a victim eventually regards the controlling person as the victim, resulting in the actual victim's acceptance of the role as the villain, according to Psychology Today. One tactic the controlling person employs is relentlessly criticizing everything the victim says and does. It may sound like constructive criticism at first, but grows more negative over time.

A controlling personality usually exhibits extreme jealousy, sometimes disguised as subtle criticism of the victim's family and friends, and of the attention the victim shows them. Isolation monopolizes the victim's attention as one step in the scheme of complete control. A controlling personality perpetually snoops and spies, looking for even subtle nuances that can be used against the victim, reports Psychology Today.

Sometimes, controlling behavior includes public humiliation, notes the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh. Ridicule, humor and teasing are poorly disguised emotional abuse, reveals Psychology Today.

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