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Showing 1-10 of 523 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 784 reviews
on December 2, 2016
This book helped me immensely! My partner was described exactly in this book. He did and said every controlling behaviour, even used the exactly the same words used as described. Patricia's book was so helpful that it made me realise that 'I didn't create it, I didn't cause it, and I can't fix it'. Oh, I tried to fix it, over and over and over, exactly as described a partner would do living in these conditions. My mental health deteriorated exactly as described in this book. After reading this book, I just knew that I had to leave. I knew the verbal abuse was going to get worse and worse. I was so scared for my mental and physical health especially after being on the receiving end of a month-long episode of all the different types of verbal abuse as described. It's all about power and control, and anyone who stays in this type of relationship will never get any of their needs met. They don't want you to have ANY needs, wants or desires. I read this book in a few days, while I was organising how to leave. I was so afraid, almost paralysed, I lost 2kg, I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep, I could barely think. I was dry-reaching every morning. It was so hard making decisions. I was in such a state of anxiety and anguish caused by his verbal abuse and body language. My adult daughter suggested that I go to a Dr to get some Valium, which I only took for 2 days. This allowed me to calm down enough and make arrangements to get my car transported to another state, get my personal possessions shipped, organise a plane flight and an airport transfer, all in a week. I dared not rely on him helping me in any way, shape or form. I needed to get myself, my car and my personal stuff out of here intact, as soon as possible. I've leaving all my furniture behind. A price I was willing to pay, just to get myself and my mental and physical health and wellbeing out in one piece, in tatters, but not completely destroyed, by a man that claims he loves me, but really just loves the power and control he tried to enforce on me so much more. I have PSTD and I just assumed it was caused by a previous abusive relationship. Now I realise that I would never have gotten better in this relationship. He only made it worse. I leave in three days. Thankfully, he's leaving me alone, giving me the silent treatment. I am invisible, a part of the furniture, not a real, live human being with my own thoughts, feelings, emotions, ideas, opinions, dreams and hopes for the future. I wasn't allowed to express these, as he saw them as a threat. I wasnt even allowed to cry and I wanted to cry all the time. I still can't believe how badly he treated me and all the nasty, mean things that he said to me. Of course, no one knows and everyone thinks he's a kind, caring, considerate man, who'd do anything for anybody, only not for me. He'll make out he is the victim for putting up with me and he'll extract as much pity and sympathy as possible from others. They'll never know that he was the long-time perpetrator of verbal and emotional abuse. This book gave me back my power and control over my life. It gave me the validation that I desperately needed and it gave me back myself. It's been a lifesaver. I'm getting out of this abusive relationship entirely due to the insight I gained from this book. I can't recommend this book highly enough. I've nearly finished reading Patricia Evens' other book, 'Controlling People' and I believe that both books contain all the information one needs, to finally understand the undestandable nature of domestic abuse in all its many forms, why it won't get better, why it will only get worse and why you need to get out now. Wish me well on beginning a new chapter of my life. Free from abuse and hopefully full of fun and real love from people that truly do care about my happiness.
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on April 17, 2012
I am a man who didn't find the information in this book biased towards woman in the slightest. By the end of the first chapter I was swapping the gender of the pronouns without conscious thought. This book is about recognizing and responding to abuse. Regardless of gender, people in abusive relationships have been systematically trained not to trust their own inner voice. Criticizing this book seems to risk further befuddled those that need it most. I think the lack of sensitivity to this possibility on behalf of the critical reviewers suggests that either they don't fully understand the dynamics of abuse, or else they DO understand the dynamics and want the potential purchasers of this book to keep doubting their inner voices.

To address the issue of gender it might be useful to add a chapter of research on how verbally abusive women differ from their male counterparts, as well as how male victims differ from female victims. As a man trapped in an abusive relationship for 20 years I can make an educated guess that there are some significant differences. For instance since men are often not as in touch with their own emotions as women are, and because the stereotypical male prototype is John Wayne, I would guess that many men silently suffer abuse right to their grave. It would be a worthwhile chapter if it helps just one male victim to begin trusting his inner voice.
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on January 19, 2017
Any woman who has ever been in a relationship with a man who is not supportive of the fact that she is a completely different person than he is NEEDS this book. This book changed my life and my beliefs on what kind of man I want in my life. If you are in a relationship where you are walking on eggshells, you don't really have a say in anything, your partner has to "approve" anything you do, you are always apologizing, YOU LIVE IN FEAR OF WHAT HE WILL THINK AND HAVE TO ASK PERMISSION, PLEASE BUY THIS BOOK!!! This book is not about physical abuse, but the subtle emotional abuse which can actually be WORSE!
If your partner makes you feel "less than", BUY THIS BOOK!!
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on October 26, 2015
I read this book and it took me nine months to see my husband as the abusive person he is! I finally got the courage to ask for a divorce the day before we were to leave for a two week trip to Italy. I was afraid to be alone with him in a foreign country. I knew the abuse would be worse far from home....I would be isolated. I am now in divorce proceedings and I am relieved to know he didn't strip away all my strength like he had hoped. Thank you Patricia!
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on August 8, 2016
If you are a woman who has ever had a man say the word "sorry" more than "I love you", if you have ever been told the words "if only you" by a man who loses control, if you have ever been put down (for your own good of course), if you have ever been afraid of saying anything to your man because you know the hell that can come from you simply speaking, if you have ever felt like you are stuck and can never get out, well, this is the book for you.
DO not hesitate to read it and if you have to, hide the book from him. It will open your eyes and you will find, as I did, that you are not crazy and you are not the one who has the problem.
This book gave me the courage to face the truth. After that I started the process of leaving my abuser-it took a few years as I saved my money-behind his back-to buy my own home. And then I got out and never, not even once, talked to him again.
Read the book for you.
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on September 11, 2015
Here's what I wrote to the the author's email address after I read the book:

So I just have a some words of thanks. Please pass on to the author if possible.

I've read Controlling People and now reading Can He Change. I was introduced, not to these books, but to a similar book at first by the woman who is now my ex-wife. I did not start this kind of reading until much later after we parted. As sad as that outcome appears, I owe her first my gratitude for being a spellbreaker; second to the large contributions that Patricia Evans has made with clear insights in these books.

I was abused by both my parents, verbally and physically. I don't ascribe blame to my mother in that she had a confirmed clinical imbalance; the father - a controller. And like many others, I had no idea I was also a controller until finally married.

I started these readings because when married she said I needed to do that or else. I am only now doing it because I thought I just might win her back - even after many years! Also, attempts at new relationships just could clear the airport runway because I would fear so badly of exhibiting those outlandish traits (puzzling ones to even me).

I know now more than ever that she will not come back when she said she wouldn't. It's like I now see divorce to mean what it means. Seems a simple concept, but I felt I always had an ace. I am actually glad circumstances permitted her to muster her army to get me gone. Oh sure, I never laid a hand to her (want to call her dear at this point but it is too ironic), but I terrorized her. She exhibited the worst kind of physical symptoms from the abuse - shingles, depression, and others.

I was most impressed with the 3rd party accounts from men in Controlling People. I cried many times reading those; I could easily identify.

I am just now developing empathy. I feel a whole life of rich experience was never there, and someone hit the restart button. I am immensely grateful. Even just noting control tendencies in others provides daily reminders to me of the need to respect others on an ongoing basis. But I recognize too that the effort must be sustained; it is too easy to resort to being like a professional stage actor.

So I feel that for the first time I am becoming a good person, not just appearing like one. In an eBay interaction by email today, the store owner said, 'it made my day to see that there are still nice people on this earth.' Nobody ever said that about me before. I can't help but cry because it feels just like Patricia described it - aligning with and being motivated with the force.

I started reading Controlling People a week ago, and although opening my mind took great effort as I progressed through the book, it was so worth it. This week turned out to be the most enjoyable week of my life - no irrational exaggeration either. I am receiving compliments, genuine expressions, from people everywhere I go. I feel comfortable in my skin like never before. I am blown away with how insecure and disconnected I have been all my life.

There are residual earnings from things like writing books. But to write about people making a difference in their lives by keeping the fire burning within... is a kind of residual outcome that is priceless. Thank you, thank you!
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on August 23, 2013
I always thought "verbal abuse" was someone just calling another person names, like saying things like "You're stupid," "You're ugly, who else would want you?" and "You're crazy."

These things comprise maybe about 1% of what verbal abuse really is.

Verbal (or really, emotional) abuse is a technique controlling individuals use to make their targets feel insecure, anxious, and desperate to please. It also wears away the victim's self-esteem, so they're less likely to leave.

If you're in a relationship where your partner TELLS you they "love you," and yet you don't FEEL loved, and you always feel like you're walking on eggshells around them, this book is for you.
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on September 11, 2015
Only 25 pages into my library's copy, I ordered a copy from Amazon because I was running out of post-it notes.
This is the book I have been longing for for 35 years! Finally someone who believes me! I am going to photo copy about 5 pages and send them to all my friends who tell me I am crazy and my husband is wonderful. The book explains that they only see the public man and cannot recognize my description of the private man.
All our previous counselors gave exactly the wrong advice and told me my husband was damaged so patience is required. This book tells me he CHOOSES to be this way and my sympathy and patience is his winning. Every exercise we were given by over a dozen different professionals empowered him more--and gave him more ammunition over me. This book is giving me hope to live in my reality full time and not get sucked into his "power over" needs.
A must read for any woman who has to interact with ANY man who makes her feel stupid, worthless, or just inadequate in some way. Just reading the section on the two realities was so much comfort and reassurance that I felt years of pain slip away. If you recognize anything said in the first pages--BUY this book.
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on October 13, 2014
Thank you to all of you who have posted reviews of this book. You convinced me to buy it, and that's one of the best moves I've ever made.

My most recent relationship was miserable, and I was BAFFLED as to why. I'm a peace-loving, intelligent, thoughtful person with excellent communication skills. My former partner was smart but tough, and I knew that relationship might be a challenge, but at the beginning I didn't know just how difficult it could get. I'm not an arguer, but my arguments with her lasted for HOURS with her talking on and on and on, criticizing me, changing her story, and asking me why I was "so overly sensitive". I didn't understand why, no matter how hard I tried, we couldn't understand each other.

This book helped me to understand that she wasn't TRYING to understand me. She wanted to win. That had never occurred to me, not even once! I had already gotten out of the relationship, but was still frustrated by the fact that I had worked so hard but been unable to "get along" with someone I loved so much. Now I understand. I'm grateful for this book!
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on February 21, 2017
I chose this book because my husband is verbally and physically abusive. I felt like the author was describing my relationship with my husband. I have been going to group therapy to meet other people who have gone through what I am going through. This is the book we are currently reading. This is is the first book I found that not only describes an abusers personality but gives actual ways to respond back. Very helpful and I would defiantly recommend to anyone dealing with an abusive relationship
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