Control Freak Meets Control Freak: Elsa P vs Dentist With Boundaries

From 2009: How I learned not I could not (and should not) try to control people at work…

Are you a control freak? Tell us about one of your boundaries!

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Control Freak Meets Control Freak: Elsa P vs Dentist With Boundaries — 42 Comments

  1. Well, I adopted his philosophy. Life is way to short to do things you don’t want to do just because people want you to. If you’re willing to take the possible hit to your business, why not? Why not be happy at your job?

  2. There’s teeth-pullers, and then there’s teeth-cleaners! But yeah, I see this. State your business – and “your bidness” – without apology.

  3. Yeah, these days I see that as akin to someone coming to me for horary astrology (which I don’t do and don’t like) and insisting I perform because I am an astrologer. In that case, I would refuse and I would likely come across the same way this guy did..

  4. “Getting your teeth cleaned is a reasonable expectation though”

    Maybe. He sure as hell didn’t think so and it didn’t matter what I thought because it was his office. And he told me I was free to call another dentist who would do both…

    Anyway, I learned a lot that day. I really never imposed my expectations on an independent business person again.

    There is a level of service you can expect from a department store clerk but if they guy/gal has their own shop – well then it’s theirs to run as they damned well please.

    When it was all said and done, I admired him. But not without some contortions prior…

  5. How funny Satori!! Just last year I decided I don’t do long hair perms or spiral perms. I hate doing them, but I felt like I still had to do them ,weird. Then I thought WTF I don’t have to do it anymore, since I have been in business for myself for the last 8 years,lol. I finally got it,hahah. I don’t like to be mean but when I don’t set bondaries I end up being resentful, when it is my own damn fault,HELLO.

  6. I have a lot of cardinal in my chart and I do have a tendency to be a control freak.. though more in a sense where, “Don’t tell me what to do!” kind of way.

    lol… in my (past) life as a designer, I tell them I don’t do back end programming and I don’t do identity design/branding. I just don’t because it’s not something I enjoy. 😛

  7. i stopped feeling guilty abt not being an elementary teacher who has her door open at the crack of dawn for the early birds…kids still try to sneak in early and i’m usually a snap turtle…i tell them…’go out and play’ (supervised..where they are supposed to be)

    once i open the door…i open my heart…
    but mind the clock!

  8. Learning to say NO was sooo freeing in my life. And it took about 45 years! I can’t tell you how many times I said yes to something I really didn’t want to do, and tossed and turned during the night worrying about it, losing sleep, because that’s what some of us folks who’ve got Capricorn do! Now I know that when someone asks me to do something and I get that anxious icky feeling in my gut, it means “Say no” and if I don’t listen, I only have myself to blame. If people complain or get nasty or talk behind your back, too bad… accept it or just go away!

  9. I think the world would run a lot more smoothly if everybody set these boundaries. People do a good job when they’re doing what they want to do. Otherwise, not so much.

  10. I love this! I’ve been forced to set boundaries in my business (web design), because being a one-woman show, I simply can’t do ALL things well (and still have time to sleep at night), so have had to learn when/where to draw the line.

    About my being controlling though, that’s a tough one to answer. Although, I do have my Sun & Venus in Aries, that’s my only Cardinal sign… I do have a ton of leadership influences, problem solving influences, and decision making is easy for me, so I may sometimes come off as being ‘controlling’, when in fact- I think it’s more that I ‘know’ what needs to be done and ‘how’ to do it, so if you want to come along (your choice) and do it my way- you’re just plain smart. 🙂

  11. Oh, I wanted to add one more thing…

    Elsa: “…thanks but that is a 15 year old dress.”

    HaHa! I just wore one of my favorite jackets yesterday and when I was complimented on it, I admitted to the person that I had bought it as part of my ‘back to school wardrobe’- 29 years ago!

  12. Exactly, why should you clean when you’re a puller? Similar thing happened to me when I was moderating an astro forum a few years ago. Folks were perplexed that I didn’t want to moderate an advice forum.

  13. I don’t do laundry for my lover. Don’t even ask. Well, if you’re incapacitated I guess I’d drop it off at the laundry service place for you..I’ll even pay for it. Just don’t ask me to handle someone else’s dirty underpants!

  14. he doesn’t clean teeth..cuz he doesn’t want too. LOL! All HAIL the power of bein your own boss!

    i’ve got lots of cardinal so yeah, i’m a freak who likes to control stuff.

    I don’t think I try to control people. But I do like to control my stuff..ie..dont’ touch it, move it breathe on it..nada. Dont “help” me out by trying to fold my towels either, there is a certain way I like them (i know bordering on OCD here, but it makes me feel better and doesn’t hurt anyone so leave it be).

    When it comes to work, I like to do things my way..you give me the result you want and i’ll produce it but not by your step by step instructions, i promise ya.

    and it really pisses me off when i can’t control my own emotions

    those are my biggies

  15. :). I have Capricorn and Libra in my chart but up til recently I felt the problem was that other people were trying to control me. I have an absolute hairtrigger when it comes to this. If there is even a whiff of “control” in the air I am out the door like a bat out of hell.

    Probably not a good trait.

    I was in a psych ward once. There were very crazy people there and then some people who were only a little crazy, like me and this other guy. The guy liked to make friends with everybody on the ward and there was this one lady who was absolutely batty who he smiled at one day and said, ” you have a pretty smile.” And she looked at him as if he’d tried to kill her and said: I DON’T LIKE PERSONAL COMMENTS!

    He looked at me for some kind of support — he should be able to say something nice to a crazy person if he wants to, right? I shrugged and said: she doesn’t like them. Don’t do that.

    Thinking: We’re on a psych ward, you idiot. The people here are not here to make friends with you. If they were capable of making friends with you they wouldn’t be here.

    The thing is she was crazy but I understood. She had no barriers left and could not deal with being manipulated even slightly by anyone. And he was a vampire. That much at least was obvious to her.

    You get thrown in psych wards for responding to people like that, but actually people who are looking for ways in to your space when you don’t want them there need their asses kicked sooner or later.

  16. 🙂 Actually it’s particularly subtle when people try to affect control with a blog. They’ll write to the blogger * a lot*. Try to push boundaries other ways — I have a great recipe for chocolate candy, what’s your mailing address? Start fights, lodge complaints, veiled criticism, etc and etc.

    Without all my cardinal stuff I might not even notice it but since I do I see it all around me, all the time. Most aren’t even aware they’re being controlling; they’re just “making friends” or “being a good neighbor” or “offering feedback.” Sure they are, but then there’s the nudge, the slight push over the line. Pretty interesting. 🙂

  17. @ eva
    I’m loving this statement

    “I was in a psych ward once. There were very crazy people there and then some people who were only a little crazy, like me and this other guy.”

    kinda like being out of the psych ward too huh?

    i love my control issues and my wavering sanity or lack thereof.

    and this one..
    “The thing is she was crazy but I understood. ”

    yeah..me too..how awesome is that?

  18. “Most aren’t even aware they’re being controlling; they’re just “making friends” or “being a good neighbor” or “offering feedback.”

    I’m not sure I share this assessment. I try to give folks benefit of the doubt for as long as I’ve got some, but many are so sophisticated at this behavior, it’s not comprehensible to me it’s not fully conscious.

  19. eva, I just addressed this on the boards when asked how easy it was for me to ignore stupidity. My answer was “very” and I learned to do this, writing this blog.

    I remember the day I realized I would have to let remarks go. Thinks like, “Mars is pink”.

    This was a boundary thing on my part and took place many years ago. On one hand I did not want to have glaringly wrong astrology on my site but I also did not want to go around correcting everyone like a school marm.

    I made a hard rule at that time – an understanding I was not responsible for what other people said or thought and this other stuff falls under the same umbrella.

    If *they* wrote, it is their mind. I may or may not rise to whatever provocation. Usually, in typical Libran fashion, I ignore it until sufficiently pushed and/or I am just in a bad mood at which point there is a shoot out at the OK corral. 🙂

  20. and I just uncovered another issue of control.
    I can’t stand it when it is assumed that i’m going to do something. If you ask me..straight out..to do something and I say that I will then you can bank on it getting done.

    If you HINT at something you would like for me to do and expect me to read between the lines and give you want you alluding too..forget it. Like..lets say someone says, “i sure would like a glass of water” (and this is an obvious one, there are more subtle ones that i can’t really describe cuz i pretty much miss them all together) I can pretty much deduct that they want me to get them a drink of water. But I’ll be darned if I offer to get it or budge until they just come straight out with it “hey, would you care to get me a glass of water” and happily I would.

    don’t lead me by manipulation..i hate that. I did read that Libra is notorious for that. I’m Libra, so I mean no offense..but is there anyone out there that thinks it may be so?

  21. I wonder if all the people in my life with passive aggressive patterns of behavior Josi wrote about above are attracted to me like flies to honey..is it because of my control problem, they are constantly accusing me of being controlling… its exhausting being on that receiving end. Do I change? whos to blame? should I not express myself directly therefore become less controlling? I don’t want to be blamed anymore, I don’t like to be cast as the hated and blamed perpetrator to someone elses feeling controlled and victimized in it, should I just keep quiet, or do I then become the controlled victim? I must have an issue, because Im not seeing clearly…

  22. must be my Capricorn rising, Im a bit baffled by all of this, I may have inadvertently uncovered by reading this. Ignorance is bliss.

  23. “Well, I adopted his philosophy. Life is way to short to do things you don’t want to do just because people want you to. If you’re willing to take the possible hit to your business, why not? Why not be happy at your job”

    Elsa was lucky to stumble upon this today. I could agree more. I spent years doing things I didn’t want to do. I don’t do much of that now and what a relief.

  24. Really interesting as am about to start up a Blog as part of a new business – good tips on what to expect! I am very cardinal but been in a box for the past 10 years working 9-5.
    Now I’m pushing back, confronting my Virgo partner’s issues around fear / control / even jealousy of quitting my 9-5, that it’s gonna be OK, when I dont even know if it will be.
    But I am trusting Saturn going through my first house to build it properly, with my Aries Sun, Mars and Moon and not let it all sink again back into employment bondage. There’s a now or never feel about it, and calling your own shots is the best.
    I am the same with dentists! Saturn teeth and knee problems since forever. Just got last filling resolved on Saturday, and told off the whole surgery for making me wait ages for scheduled appointments. I go from one dentist to another, something always goes wrong. Plus I have functional dyslexia, so when its important to be somewhere, my mind does a blank gap, I forget, even when I have set reminders. That I guess is a form of unconscious control. I’m always late, I think I have more time than I really have. Things to work on!

  25. So much for the Hippocratic oath. Or don’t dentists have to take that vow? What a character. And no I do not argue with my dentist, he has power tools. The Marathon Man movie changed any back talk I might give my dentist.

    I like living alone. I want safe space where I can veg and be as I am. I really have to hold my breath when anyone tries to tell me what I should do in my safe space. I don’t have room for a microwave in my kitchen. I don’t want a microwave. But my sister insisted I have one because I am job hunting and people who have jobs have microwaves. She implies that I never worked before? I don’t get it. So I suppose I am a control freak against home invasion.

    Oh, and when I’m working the rest of the environment can be complete chaotic mess, but my work space has to be organized or it makes me crazy.

  26. Ya know, you may be a control freak, but you did not retaliate. There are people who slash tires or maim someone for not getting what they wanted. You must be smart enough to know that retaliating against him was not going to get your teeth cleaned. Some people can’t even see that. No coping skills at all those folks. They just can’t handle no.

  27. omg. this is so good! lol my mother has both libra and capricorn and it’s ironic that she birthed daughters with dominant mutable in the chart. (maybe a lesson so we help eachother) she has a difficult time to let go. plus with all her Scorpio, it’s not easy. i have capricorn so i try to control only myself, trying to be more aware.

  28. That’s a funny story about a *wisdom* tooth, Elsa, and wow, you really get me thinking about astrology in ways I’ve not connected the dots before. Hell yes, cardinal signs want to be in charge! LOL I’ve always known that theoretically, but I never looked at how “cardinal” worked and functioned in my relationships as a pattern that I’m dealing with. Thanks for shedding light on this through your own self awareness.

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