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Your Partner Can Control Your Brain, Science Explains

The dominant partner has no incentive to give up control. It’s up to the subordinate partner to change the relationship dynamics. In doing so, power in the relationship may rebalance. Regardless, he or she will have gained the autonomy and mental strength to enjoy a better life or leave the relationship. Basic steps to making these changes are:

  • Learn all you can about codependency and abuse.
  • Join Codependents Anonymous and begin psychotherapy.
  • Build your self-esteem.
  • Learn not to react to putdowns or your partner’s attempts to control and manipulate you.
  • Learn how to be assertive and set boundaries.
  • Develop activities and interests you participate in without your partner.
  • Learn mindfulness meditation to strengthen your mind.
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If you’re dealing with someone highly defensive or narcissistic, follow the steps in Dealing with a Narcissist.

Written by Darlene Lancer
Originally appeared in

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Our Partner Can Control Our Brain, Science Explains
Our Partner Can Control Our Brain, Science Explains

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Darlene Lancer, JD, LMFT
Darlene Lancer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and an expert author on relationships and codependency. She's counseled individuals and couples for 30 years and coaches internationally. Her books and other online booksellers and her website
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