Deal with Obsessive Boyfriend and when to Give Up

Edited by Karmeli B. Caldez, Anonymous, Eng, Lynn and 4 others

There is a thin line between being cutely possessive and being annoyingly obsessive. Possessiveness happens when you don't want to share your partner (and who does?). That is, you don't like having other people wanting or crushing on your partner, you don't like seeing him or her dancing with another person other than you, etc. On the other hand, obsession is when you don't want to spend even one minute without your partner. You call him to check up on him every five minutes, even when you know he's at work, his Facebook page becomes your homepage and you stalk through all his comments, messages and timeline posts. There's a span of time when some of this may actually seem cute and romantic, but when it becomes excessive, it gets too creepy.

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An Obsessive Relationship

Before moving further into how you can handle an obsessive partner, you need to know what an obsessive relationship looks like (just so you won't mix up something with a sign of obsession).

He owns your time

It is normal for couples to spend a lot of time together, especially in the early parts of the relationship when they are still in the honeymoon phase. This phase is the time when you are like opposite poles of magnets, always together. That's when it is OK. However, later in your relationship, when you can no longer do anything if he's not with you because he would not allow it, this is not good. An obsessive boyfriend may want to have your daily schedule full of his name, and he will make sure that happens. He will not allow you to do something or go somewhere if it does not involve him.

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He needs you too much

Depending on another person entirely is only acceptable if it's a child we are talking about; if it's an adult man, you should keep your guard up. An obsessive partner will say he needs you in his life and that he can't continue living without you, and he literally means it. He depends on you. You may find it normal to be clingy, but when he becomes too needy, so much so that the "need" overpowers the love as it should be. His need for contact gets in the way of living a normal life. It's OK to keep calling you at midnight if he's worried about you because you said you'll be home before 10. However, if he calls, texts, and/or emails you during the hours when he knows you are at work just to ask where you are and what you are doing, then contacts you again 30 minutes later to ask the same thing, there's something wrong with the relationship. This is even more true if he freaks out and contacts your friends and family just because you can't answer his calls when you said you'd be in a meeting. If it's an emergency like, he had an accident, or one of your family members called because someone just died, then OK, but if it's just because he wanted to check if you're OK or know your current activity, that's definitely a warning sign.

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He's being too controlling

If your guy asks you to change your clothes to more decent ones before you go out, that is not OK. If he constantly nags about how he does not like your new hair, says that you look like a slob in your new pair of jeans, or says that he hates your new friends, that is too much interference as well. He is entitled to his opinion, but you should be able to live your life as you see fit. If he just won't stop until you turn away from the things that you care about because they bother him, you're in deep trouble.

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How Do You Deal With an Obsessive Boyfriend?

When the person is fixated on you, what do you do?

  1. 1
    Talk to him.
    Your first move should always be to communicate. It is possible that he's not aware that he's smothering you, so tell him about it. Explain to him that his love is suffocating and it's not healthy for you or him anymore. If he needs more information, give him examples of when he shows signs of obsessiveness and give him the opportunity to explain why he does that. (There might be a good explanation in there somewhere.)
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  2. 2
    Find out the roots before you give up on finding a cure.
    Obsessive behavior could be caused by a lot of factors, such as abandonment issues, low self-esteem, growing up in a non-affectionate environment, with someone who has a superiority complex, etc. After you've figured out why he acts the way he does, try to address the problem. Sometimes, people who are obsessive just need to be reassured that they are loved and that nothing is going to change that.
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  3. 3
    Be patient.
    Trying to help an obsessive person is like trying to cure a patient who does not want your help. They may not be aware that they are becoming bothersome to a partner, and they might not want to believe that they're doing anything wrong. For an obsessive boyfriend, what matters is that he gets to keep you to himself, even if it means having to lock you up in a closet (sometimes literally). You have to extend the lines of your patience when dealing with an obsessed person because it really is going to be a long road.
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  4. 4
    Encourage him to meet other people.
    This is, in a way, distancing yourself from him. You need to get away from him without him realizing that's what you're doing, just so he gets over the fixation. Encourage him to go out with his friends without you, or talk to his friends about them taking him somewhere else for the weekend. You can also introduce new people to him - people he can actually get along with - so he can talk to more people about stuff other that you.
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  5. 5
    Get him involved in other activities.
    Get him a new set of golf clubs, sign him up for music tutoring jobs, make him go to volunteer jobs that build homes for disaster victims - anything that will get his mind off of you even for just a few hours. Keep him busy and tire him out so he won't even think of calling you in the wee hours of the night just to check if you're asleep yet.
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  6. 6
    Don't put him down.
    If the obsession is caused by low self-confidence, the last thing you want to do is to make him feel less important. You are his partner and it is expected of you to help him in fighting this phase along with him.
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  7. 7
    Get to know where he excels and do the activity together.
    His fulfillment after doing a great job will boost his esteem a little, plus he gets to do it with you so he won't hesitate or say no before you even propose for the activity.
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  8. 8
    If all else fails, ask for professional help.
    Visit a psychiatrist and ask for advice as to how you can help your boyfriend with his problem and how you can deal with him. Better yet, take him to the psychiatrist with you so he or she can also talk to your boyfriend and determine where the problem lies, so that you may address the problematic issues accordingly.
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When Do You Give Up On An Obsessive Relationship?

Many relationships, though problematic, are still worth a try. However, when it's time to let go, you have to just let go. When you feel like the relationship is not healthy anymore, or when everything has been tried without much hope, it really is time to give up. Being in an obsessive relationship could be harmful to both the one obsessed and the one he is obsessing about. It can lead to interruption of normal daily life, depression, suicidal tendencies, physical abuse, emotional blackmailing, social harassment such as stalking, and other similar problems. Some experts will advise you to run for your life at the first sight of a symptom, but if you truly love the person, you will hold on as long as you can, but when do you say "enough is enough"?

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  1. 1
    When leaving him gets you into a cycle you're very much aware of.
    When threatened to be left behind, an obsessive person will negotiate with you beyond their wits, promising you that he will change. This is good, but then he goes back to normal after days or weeks of having you back. If this happens every time and he fails to see the importance of letting you breathe, then you really have to give up. You can't make him change by threatening to leave, then succumbing to him before you even take one step forward. This is not helping him either. This will only give him ideas of how to manipulate you even better.
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  2. 2
    When he starts inflicting pain emotionally and physically.
    At the first sight of this, you probably should get packed and leave right away. This means he is gaining more control over you, especially when he knows you're not going anywhere, and the last thing you want to do is get used to this kind of relationship.
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  3. 3
    When he refuses to get help.
    This is when he dismisses the idea that he is not well or that something is wrong with your relationship. If he insists that nothing needs fixing and starts to harass you every time you bring up the topic, it is high time to leave the relationship.
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Questions and Answers

Are there specific words you can say to make an obsessed boyfriend give up on you?

How do I say exactly the right thing to make my obsessed stalker ex boyfriend stop bothering me?. I have tried: I have tried to tell him to leave me alone but he ignores my request and does not respect my boundaries.. I think it was caused by: He feels so bad at being rejected by me that he is now obsessed with me.

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You will need to find a male friend who can act as your new partner. Words do not stop obsessed people as they seem to them only as a cover-up. These words will hurt or work only after the obsession is over, not during the stalking period. Ask the person whom you know to answer your calls, walk you around, and close your social profiles, if you have any, so that he does not know what happens in your life. Block his number, if it is possible. In some countries, you may report the person to the police. Whatever you do, limit conversations with him to short and brief "talk to my man about it".

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Categories : Relationships

Recent edits by: Donna, Monta, Alma

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