Home Relationship 10 Manipulative Behaviors That Are Not Actually Love

10 Manipulative Behaviors That Are Not Actually Love


It can be difficult to recognize a controlling relationship and is frequently rife with doubt. Even though you might find it difficult to categorize your circumstances as poisonous, recurring feelings of uncertainty and uneasiness when you engage with your partner can be a red flag.

It’s essential to keep in mind that in the dating world, there are people who truly care about you, people who feel badly about you, and others who want to manipulate you. When manipulative actions occur, it’s simple to let love and loyalty cloud your judgment and make it hard to view things as they really are.


Here are 10 manipulative behaviors that are often mistaken for love


Jealousy and Possessiveness

In partnerships, a certain amount of jealousy is normal, but too much jealousy is unhealthy. It is hardly an indication of love when your partner is too controlling, follows you around all the time, or becomes irate when you spend time with other people.


A very sneaky psychological manipulation technique called gaslighting seeks to cause you to doubt your perception, memory, or sanity. The manipulator will dispute what they’ve said or done out loud while claiming you’re exaggerating or “misremembering” things.

If this is how your partner acts all the time, you’re probably being gaslighted. This is a severe warning sign that points to a toxic relationship dynamic that may hurt your mental well-being.

Constant Criticism

While it’s important to get constructive criticism in order to grow, persistently harsh criticism that makes you feel unworthy or inadequate is emotional abuse. Your self-esteem should be strengthened by love, not undermined.

Isolation from Friends and Family

Your partner is attempting to isolate and dominate you if they insist on spending all of your time together and prevent you from seeing friends and family. It is ideal for both parties in a good partnership to lead independent social lives.


Guilt is a powerful tool that manipulators can use to further their agendas; they can use even the most innocent of circumstances to shift responsibility. It’s obvious when your partner is manipulating you when they constantly make you feel bad about what you’ve done, especially if you haven’t done anything wrong. This type of behavior is concerning because it suggests an unhealthy relationship that may be harmful and emotionally taxing.

Threats and Ultimatums

Threatening actions are blatant signs of manipulation, such as threatening to hurt yourself, leave, or punish you if you don’t do as they say. This is a method of coercion meant to impose fear and maintain power.

In contrast, love shouldn’t make you feel like a hostage; rather, it should be about freedom, respect, and understanding. Threats like these are not an indication of love; rather, they are the work of someone attempting to exert control and manipulation.

Playing the Victim

To win over people’s sympathy and maintain control over a relationship, manipulators frequently turn to playing the victim. This strategy is continually placing the blame for their failures on others, even their spouses, and never taking ownership of their acts.

Such actions are a serious warning sign of a manipulative personality. It’s critical to identify this tendency because love doesn’t entail the perpetual shifting of blame but rather requires accountability and mutual respect.

Withholding Affection

It is manipulative and should never be tolerated in a relationship when someone uses withholding love, affection, or attention as a kind of punishment. Emotional deprivation is a poisonous habit used for dominance and control.

Sincere love is dependable, unwavering, and unaffected by one’s behavior or output. Love is reciprocal respect and care that should always be present in a good relationship, not something to be gained or taken away.

Controlling Behavior

Manipulative behavior also includes controlling areas of your life, such your appearance, finances, or daily routine. It’s a means of claiming control and taking away your independence.

On the other side, a loving companion will value your freedom and uniqueness. Rather than attempting to restrict or control you, they will promote your own development and support your decisions.

Ignoring Boundaries

Manipulation, not love, is when someone disrespects or ignores your personal limits or makes you feel bad for setting them. Each partner in a good relationship should accept and respect the other’s boundaries without question. They are essential to preserving the relationship’s uniqueness, comfort level, and respect for one another.

You should feel protected, respected, and adored while you are in love. It could be time to reassess your relationship if you see any of these traits in your partner. Never mistake manipulation and control for love. You are worthy of genuine affection and respect.

Final thought

It’s important to realize that love is about caring, respect, and understanding for one another. It isn’t about domination or control. It is critical that you get support and assistance if you believe that you are being controlled in your relationship. Happiness and tranquility, not dread and anxiety, should be the results of love. And never forget that you deserve a relationship that enriches your life rather than detracts from it.