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No matter who they were for you, parent, friend, significant other, etc. we have all experienced the overprotective nature of people who are close to us. However, what is the difference between being protective of someone and being dramatic and overdoing it? In my understanding there are three types of people, the ones who love to be nurtured, the ones who need freedom, and the ones who need a balance of both.



Personally, I believe in order to find the perfect balance and to come to an understanding, communication is always the key. (Disclaimer! Parents do not fall under this statement unfortunately.) If your partner or friend is constantly telling you what to do or not to do and is essentially trying to control your life, it might be helpful to take a step back and explain to them that their care is overwhelming at times and they need to take it down a notch.

Thus, here is a list of what not to do to your friend/significant other without their consent:

1. DO NOT invade their privacy.

2. DO NOT tell someone to not associate with a certain person.

3. DO NOT try to solve their issues behind their back.

4. DO NOT try to essentially take control of their life.

5. DO NOT shield them of everything that you think might hurt them.

6. DO NOT monitor their day.

7. DO NOT control their wardrobe.

8. DO NOT terrorize them with constant phone calls/texts.

9. DO NOT supervise their social media.

10. DO NOT force them into anything.


Everyone has their own opinions of what relationships with your friends, parents, partners should be. The main concern is to find a balance between two and create a health atmosphere where everyone feels comfortable and not suppressed. Therefore, it is incredible important to communicate and respect other’s freedom.


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Maryna Khokhlova

PS Behrend '19

Born in Dnipro, Ukraine. Currently live in Erie, PA. Senior at Penn State Behrend International Business BS Marketing BS Alpha Sigma Alpha, Member
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