web analytics
July 14, 2014 / 16 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim's Restaurant in Tiberias Restaurant in Tiberias Enriches Holocaust Survivors’ Wellbeing

The generosity of Mrs. Lee Steinberg of New York helped establish the Meir Panim Free Restaurant in Tiberias.



Part 14 – How Control Begins and Breeds Resentment


Schonbuch-Rabbi-Daniel

In most dating situations it would be highly unlikely for a person to act out in a controlling manner. For example, you would not see a young man rant and rave if his first-time shidduch is five minutes late for a date. Both parties are still in the illusionary phase of the relationship, where they are careful to limit any form of criticism and to maintain an air of civility during all interchanges. Control is also not usually a major factor at the beginning of a marriage, when most people are doing their best to start off with their best foot forward and limiting any excessive behavior.

While during the initial phase of a serious relationship people tend to treat their fiancé as a friend, over time, controlling behaviors can silently creep in and become apparent when one side attempts to yield an imbalance of power over the other. They may also start objectifying the other person and mistakenly believe that this person was created to serve their needs. And, when they don’t get their way, they feel it’s their right to force them to comply and make them do what they want.

It is true that you may think that what you want should be acceptable to your spouse, even though in reality it is debasing or demeaning. Of course there are many circumstances in which we have to do things we don’t feel are easy or pleasant. For instance, a parent may find it hard to tell their child to behave in a certain way. A wife or husband may complain that they need more help around the house or with their children. Problems begin when we start believing that we can actually control the other person’s behavior, and we don’t have to negotiate for what we need.

In counseling I often see situations where a husband very giving to his wife. He gives her all the things that he thinks she wants. He may provide her with all the comforts imaginable, including a beautiful home, car, clothing etc. Yet, she may feel that her husband is emotionally detached and unresponsive to the things she really wants – warmth and affection.

Meir, 24 and Tzipporah, 22, though recently married, have both begun to feel as if the other person was unresponsive to his/her needs. Although there had been respect on both sides, over the last few months, Tzipporah had begun to feel that her husband was wielding too much control over their finances. About two months prior to their first visit with me, Meir had decided that he would be solely responsible for their finances and without Tzipporah’s knowledge, had opened up his own bank account. Tzipporah would not have direct access to money, and instead would be given a small “allowance” for spending each week. Clearly, Meir had begun to control his wife, by using money as his primary weapon.

I was interested in exploring whether money was the only area of control in their lives. Often, control starts out in other areas, such as emotional control, or control over how love is shared or reserved to punish the other person. This is, it turned out, how Meir had shown early signs of controlling behavior. During their dating period, Meir began to take unusual control over their relationship. At first, he would insist on deciding when and where they would dine. At first, she viewed this behavior as somewhat gallant or chivalrous, and at a certain level she even enjoyed it, because she thought there was something charmingly old-fashioned about it.

However, one night, he ordered her a dish she knew she really would not like, and when she tried to ask the waiter to bring her something else instead, Meir glared at her until she felt shamed into silence.

During that date, Tzipporah found herself fuming inside, all the while trying to conceal her anger at his having treated her like a child in front of their waiter. Through a sheer act of will, she managed to keep up a steady patter of superficial, meaningless small talk, but she barely touched her meal. (After all, it was something she did not like.) She wanted to speak up afterward, when they were finally alone together in the car, but for some strange reason, she found that she was almost afraid to do so. It was a strange, unfamiliar feeling, being somewhat fearful and on guard around the person whom she believed she loved, and who, likewise, claimed to love her.

So, rather than directly confronting him about how his actions had made her feel, the following day she called her sister to discuss it. She was initially embarrassed to tell her sister what had transpired, and she wasn’t even sure which aspect of the situation was the greatest source of her embarrassment: the fact that her fiancé had treated her like a child in front of that waiter, or the fact that she had felt afraid — genuinely afraid — of confronting him about how badly he had behaved.

About the Author: Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch, MA, Marriage and Family Therapy, is an expert in marriage counseling, pre-marital education, and helping teens in crisis with offices in Flatbush, Cedarhurst, and Crown Heights. He is a certified PAIRS instructor, and trained as a Level 1, Emotionally Focused Therapist at the Ackerman Institute for the Family, and is a member of AASECT. He is the author of At Risk – Never Beyond Reach and First Aid For Jewish Marriages. To watch his free videos on marriage and parenting and for appointments visit: www.JewishMarriageSupport.com or call 646-428-4723


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Part 14 – How Control Begins and Breeds Resentment”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
The alert Iron Dome team near Ashdod carried out the first Patriot missile interception in 20 years to destroy the Hamas drone over the port city.
8-Yr-Old Boy Injured in Missile Attack on Ashdod; Patriot Missiles Knock Out Suicide Bomber Drone
Latest Sections Stories
Aaron in front of Gush Katif-related school history project.

He wondered what it was like to live in Israel, to be religious.

Eller-071114-Book

The Open Kitchen is so appealing you practically want to eat the pages as you turn them.

Schonfeld-logo1

In reality, Baruch is one of many children who can be described as twice-exceptional. He is both gifted and struggling with a learning disability.

Since there is no “happenstance” in our world, we can only say that something of great import is taking place in the Holy Land.

Alternatively, you can try your absolute hardest to listen whenever she says anything.

As queen of the Maghreb, Aures Damia reigned in peace and prosperity until 702.

Some yeshivish couples do not believe in going out with other couples, but that does not mean that the women cannot have social lives.

That rescued little boy is Israel’s former chief rabbi, Israel Meir Lau, now chief rabbi of Tel Aviv.

An SRO crowd recently celebrated the 22nd Anniversary Breakfast of Congregation Bais Naftoli, honoring Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell and community leader and philanthropist Ira Frankel.

Zimmer was popular with veteran teammates like Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese and Duke Snider – and with a rookie lefthander named Sandy Koufax.

Of course it is disingenuous to tell a person from a non-rabbinic, non-rosh yeshiva home to make an effort.

Israel’s coastline may be short, but there are still some real estate pearls waiting to be realized, offering cheap alternatives for sea front living. All you have to do is go further from the boundaries of Tel-Aviv and the Dan Block.

Explosive children or those with ODD are easily frustrated, demanding and inflexible.

More Articles from Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch
Schonbuch-Rabbi-Daniel

Separation anxiety disorder is a condition in which a child becomes fearful and nervous when away from home or separated from a loved one – usually a parent or other caregiver – to whom the child is attached.

Schonbuch-Rabbi-Daniel

I try to focus on the parents in a way that is not often addressed. As soon as the child gets anxious, the parent gets anxious;

Most people are not aware that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults age 18 and older (18% of U.S. population).

Parental conflict affects children in varying ways, depending on their age. For example, teenagers around the age of fifteen or sixteen are most likely to involve themselves in their parents’ battles. Younger children may keep their feelings hidden inside and may only show signs of depression in late childhood or early adolescence.

When parents come to talk to me about a troubled child or teenager, I often find it helpful to explore whether or not their marriage is causing their teenager to be at risk.

Active listening is only one part of the marriage equation; learning what to say and what not to say is the other half. And, it’s not just about expressing your feelings, but doing it in a way that avoids hurting the other person.

Control may be the most destructive force influencing a marriage. Let me illustrate this point with the following story. About two years ago a woman named Bracha, 47, came to speak to me about her husband’s controlling behavior. This is how she described her precarious situation:

Controlling behavior may be the number one reason that your marriage needs first aid.

If you are unfamiliar with the topic of control, it’s no surprise. Most people are unaware that control is a major issue for counselors, therapists and psychologists-at-large.

    Latest Poll

    Israel's Iron Dome Anti-Missile System:





    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/marriage-relationships/part-14-how-control-begins-and-breeds-resentment/2009/05/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: