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Overprotective Boyfriend: 26 Dominating Signs & What to Do to Fix Him

If you have an overprotective and dominating boyfriend, you might want to rethink the relationship. Here are the signs and what to do about it.

overprotective dominating boyfriend

An overprotective boyfriend may be deeply in love with you, and he may even care a lot about you. But is that any excuse for him to hold your strings, dominate you and control your life?

There’s a very thin line between being overprotective-and-caring and being overprotective-and-dominating.

But almost always, overprotective and dominating behavior goes hand in hand.

If a man is overprotective, there is a very big chance that he’d also be very dominating and controlling too.

He may not realize it himself. And of course, he may not always confront you to your face! [Read: The really big problems of dating an insecure guy]

Instead, he may have better ways to manipulate you and make you feel guilty about everything you do until you break from the inside and start to believe that he’s right and you’re wrong… all the time!

Want to know the difference between a protective and loving boyfriend, and an overprotective and dominating boyfriend? Read these 33 signs and qualities that make a perfect boyfriend to know more.

The dominating and overprotective boyfriend and husband

Not all boyfriends or husbands try to dominate their partners intentionally. It may start off with meek pleas and childish accusations. But at some point in time, as you constantly give in because of your love for your partner, it may turn into a fight for control.

Sometimes, a dominating partner may try to use force to control you. But when a dominating guy realizes that you’re constantly resisting his control over you, he may back off for a while, only to sneakily arm-twist you just when you least expect it! [Read: 23 shockingly subtle tactics controlling guys use on their girl]

After all, a possessive and dominating guy doesn’t always have to use force to dominate you and make you believe he’s only doing something to protect you.

All he has to do is find the right circumstances to say something that’ll make you doubt yourself! [Read: 17 sure signs that prove your boyfriend has a jealous streak in him]

The surest signs to know your boyfriend is overprotective and dominating

Not all possessive guys would try to dominate you to your face. Instead, they’d try to get to know things about you by snooping behind your back.

And when they find the right occasion to hurt you or hit you in a soft spot, they behave like the nicest guys in the world and try to convince you about how they’re right, and how the whole world is against you!

You may never see the signs for several months until you feel isolated and weak, and totally reliant on your man.

And then, someday *too late*, you may just start to realize that the world isn’t all bad, and it’s just your man who was turning you against everyone else because he wanted to dominate you and have you all for himself! [Read: 16 signs of a devious abusive boyfriend and 4 ways to stop him and regain control of your life]

Read these signs of a possessive and subtly dominating guy, and ask yourself if you see any of these signs in your own relationship.

And once you realize how you’re being tricked into isolation and submission by your *sweet and charming* boyfriend, start pushing him back and reclaim the control over your life before you lose it all to his whims and games!

1. He’s snoopy

He eavesdrops on your conversations with your friends, when you’re talking over the phone, texting, or reading your emails.

Sometimes, you may even catch him scanning your phone’s call logs. And at other times, he may confront you with your phone bill and ask you to explain why you’ve been calling a particular friend so much!

2. Everyone likes you

Each time you speak to a guy or laugh at his joke, your boyfriend accuses you of flirting with the guy or encouraging him to flirt with you.

He constantly tells you that every guy you talk to has a crush on you or is being nice to you only because that guy finds you attractive.

And when some guy tries to hit on you out of the blue or tries to ask you out, your boyfriend says “I told you so!” like it was your fault. [Read: 27 subtle ways your lover may be manipulating you right now!]

3. Your own life

Your guy hates it when you want to do something by yourself. He behaves like he has a moral obligation to oversee everything you do *for your safety, of course*. And he’s always happiest when your life revolves around him and his life.

4. He’s one step ahead

Another sign that you have an overprotective boyfriend is that he’s one step ahead of you. When you just start dating, he behaves like he’s your boyfriend already. And when he becomes your boyfriend, he tries to behave like your husband!

He’s always one step ahead in the commitment game, especially when he sees that you have a lot of guy friends.

5. Beck and call

You always have to be available for him, even if you’re out with friends or want to spend a day by yourself.

Even if you’re having dinner with friends or in the middle of a serious conversation, he expects you to answer his call and speak to him for as long as he wants, or he just gets upset or gives you the silent treatment!

6. Jealousy

He’s insanely jealous, no matter how much you prove your love for him. He constantly tells you that you treat him badly, or tells you that he doesn’t believe you love him as much as he loves you. [Read: The best ways to make a jealous boyfriend not-so-jealous in no time!]

7. He scares you

The more you agree with him or avoid people just to make him feel more secure or loved in the relationship, the happier he feels.

You may not have realized this yet, but the more awkward and uncomfortable you feel around others, the more comfortable and happy he feels about the relationship.

8. Big talk

Your guy hates it when you speak highly about someone else. He starts to dislike any person who seems to be high on your list of nice people, and he constantly tries to pick flaws in people you admire just to convince you that they aren’t all that great.

9. Opposing views

A dominating boyfriend wouldn’t like it if you oppose his views or want to do something that’s against his wishes.

Instead of just accepting the difference in opinion, he would force you into believing that he’s right and you’re wrong. [Read: 22 big early warning signs of a bad boyfriend]

10. The helping hand

He expects you to come running to him each time you have an issue, irrespective of whether he can help you or not.

He wants you to think of him as the only point of help for everything, and he gets irritated if you take help from someone else or do something on your own.

By doing this, he’s subconsciously trying to make you dependent on him, so he can mold you into the perfect image of the girlfriend he’s built in his head. [Read: 23 codependent traits that make you clingy and how to break out of it]

11. He confuses you

His behavior is hard to read, and you’re always left confused, which is another sign of an overprotective boyfriend.

On one hand, he seems like the nicest and most caring guy you can find. And on the other hand, he seems like he has control and anger issues. And you convince yourself that his controlling behavior is a small part of him that’s worth overlooking. After all, he does love you a lot! [Read: 21 ways to stop getting manipulated by your man]

12. Suspicious behavior

He’s convinced that he has reason to doubt your fidelity. He constantly believes he’s caught you cheating, even if you’re just having a friendly conversation with a guy friend or a coworker.

13. Emotionally weak

Your guy gets sad or angry very easily, whenever you go against his wishes or talk to any other guy. And over time, just to please him, you avoid talking to other guys or avoiding doing anything that may even remotely offend him.

But what you may not realize is that he’s getting exactly what he wants, total control over your life and the way you live it.

14. He watches you

When the both of you are out together, he constantly watches the way you interact with others *other guys*.

And after almost every social gathering, he always seems to have a few things to say, especially about how much attention you were giving some other guy. [Read: 21 big signs of emotional abuse you may be overlooking]

15. It’s your fault

He blames you each time some guy shows any interest in you. He hates it when you make new friends of the opposite sex, and tells you that you’re leading guys on just to have fun behind his back.

16. The guilt trip

He makes you feel guilty when you choose to spend time with someone else, other than him.

He may not accuse you of anything, but the way he talks to you when you meet him later would make you feel like a bad partner who’s ignoring her man. [Read: 20 signs to recognize a selfish person and ways to stop them from hurting you]

17. Bad mouthing

He speaks ill of everyone who’s close to you. And he doesn’t waste any opportunity to show a family member or close friend in a bad light.

He may do this subconsciously to isolate you from anyone who could give you support. After all, he wants to be the only important and special person in your life.

18. Possessive

He behaves like both of you possess each other. He loves saying that you belong to him.

And the more you try to get your own space in the relationship, the harder and more desperately he tries to cling to you or intrude into your personal space. [Read: 16 reasons why you’re so easily taken for granted by everyone!]

What to do if you have an overprotective and dominating boyfriend

Being overprotective and dominating is a sign of insecurity – on his part. If he was confident he wouldn’t feel a need to be overprotective and dominant over you. So, what should you do and how should you handle his behavior if it is having a negative effect on your life? Here are some tips.

1. Be honest with yourself

The first thing you need to do is to admit to yourself that you have a dominating and overprotective boyfriend – and it’s not making you happy.

Let’s face it – his behavior isn’t going to make you a better person. If he was supportive and caring, he wouldn’t be acting like this. 

2. You don’t need to change

He might make you feel like you are the problem and that you need to change. But you don’t. He’s the problem.

If he tells you that everything you do is wrong, it can be difficult to feel loved and accepted. You are perfect the way you are and you shouldn’t have to change for anyone – especially him.

3. Try to talk to him about it

If you don’t want to leave him, then you are going to have to have a conversation with him about how he makes you feel.

Tell him that you question why he is even with you if he is always trying to dominate and control you. He might not be able to see your point of view, and he might not even care. So, it might lead to a breakup if he can’t be reasonable about your desires.

4. Don’t give in

He might give you threats or ultimatums because these are examples of some really dominating behavior.

You might think you can make things better by agreeing, talking it through, or even coming up with compromises. But never, ever give in to him. Don’t allow him to dominate you. Simply say “no.”

5. Realize he might not love you

Well, this should be rephrased. Maybe he’s not capable of really, truly loving anyone because he doesn’t even love himself.

If he really loved you, he wouldn’t have to be overprotective and dominating. Instead, he would do anything to make you happy. If he’s not doing that, then you have a big problem on your hands. [Read: Does he still love me? 25 questions to reveal the truth instantly]

6. Establish your freedom

Don’t allow him to tell you what you can or can’t do or where you can or can’t go. Be your own independent self and decide for yourself.

If you don’t have your personal freedom in the relationship, then this is abusive. Seek help and find the courage to walk away from him if he won’t change.

7. Don’t let him gaslight you

Gaslighting is trying to make the other person question their sanity. If he’s trying to tell you that you are the problem – not him – don’t believe him.

He is just trying to manipulate you so that you feel like you’re crazy. He doesn’t do this because he’s really the crazy one and doesn’t want you to figure that out.

8. Break up with him

If your boyfriend’s overprotective and dominating behavior is making you unhappy, then you should probably break up with him.

Sure, it’s never easy to go through breakups. But if this is a negative relationship that you’re in, you are much better off if you go your separate ways.

[Read: How to break up with a narcissist and fly out of their gilded cage]

A protective boyfriend isn’t bad at all. But when his protective side goes into overdrive and he starts displaying most of these signs of an overprotective and dominating boyfriend, then this is something you need to give a serious thought about.

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Vinod Srinivas Serai
Vin Serai
Vin Serai is the founder of LovePanky.com, and has delved deep into the working of love and relationships for almost two decades. Having dipped his feet in almo...