There are many ways people cope with being controlled. Most of them fit into the three coping styles listed below.
1. Fighting: resisting control, getting back at the controller in different ways, trying to come out as a winner with the controller being the loser.
2. Escaping: avoiding or running away from control--keeping thoughts within yourself or actually leaving the scene.
3. Submitting: giving in or giving up and doing just as the controller demands--and then resenting yourself and disliking the controller.
Here is an example of each of the coping styles using the following illustration:
Your teacher gets angry at some of the students in your class for continually goofing off and suddenly announces there will be a big test tomorrow.
- You argue with the teacher that it isn't fair to punish the whole class. (Fight)
- You don't go to that class the next day. (Flight)
- You go home and study and take the test even though you think it's totally unfair. (Submit)
Read the following list of coping behaviors and keep a mental note of any of the ones you have used or now use:
- Bossing, bullying
- Aggressive arguing
- Blaming others
- Cheating, tattling
- Feeling resentful, angry, hostile
- Being submissive
- Striking back, retaliating
- Resisting, rebelling
- Confirming, afraid to try something new*
*Excerpt from Dr. Thomas Gordon's F.E.T. Young Adult Resource Book