My Boyfriend Critiques Everything I Do & I’m Over It

While he can be very sweet and caring, my boyfriend often criticizes me over menial things like what I choose to wear, my grammar and any little random mistakes I make throughout the day. It was fine with it at first because I don’t truly think he means any harm, but now I’ve had enough.

  1. It makes me feel like a child. No one wants to be reprimanded like a kid, especially not by their partner. I used to get corrected all the time when I was young, but now that I’m an adult, it’s absolute BS. I feel like whatever I do, I’m gonna get called out on it and it makes me feel like I’m 10. He’s my boyfriend, not my father.
  2. He’s trying to help but it comes off as controlling. I understand that the motivation behind his criticism is to help me, but it honestly comes off as him trying to dictate every element of my existence. Everyone has pointed it out to me and I don’t think I can take it for very much longer. He has high standards for himself, I get it, but I don’t get why he needs to project his dissatisfaction with himself onto me.
  3. He’s a perfectionist and I’m not. I actually find it endearing when people make mistakes because it means they’re human! When I mess up, I find it really easy to just laugh about it and move on. My boyfriend has totally different standards, and if I so much as pronounce a word wrong, he’ll instantly shoot me down. He doesn’t even bother to take into account that we’ve lived different lives, I don’t know everything he knows, I’m not perfect and I don’t care. I hope one day he’ll realize that.
  4. He’s not nice about it. It would be different if he corrected me as a joke, but it seems to be like a really big deal to him. It’s almost as if he’s ashamed when I mess up. If I overcook our dinner or show up a little bit late somewhere, he’ll roll his eyes about it. My past boyfriends would just laugh it off, but he actually seems sincerely worried or even deeply offended. It’s like he thinks it’s his job to fix me. I mean, I appreciate how much he cares, but it’s honestly too much.
  5. Nothing is ever good enough for him. He’s as hard on himself as he is on me, which just adds to the nightmare. Even if something really awesome happens in his life, it’s like the glass is always half empty. He always thinks he can do better and he pushes me to be better too. What he doesn’t realize is that I don’t need a mentor—I need a partner.
  6. It’s actually really embarrassing. It’s especially awful when he criticizes me in front of others. It’s like, wow, you’re supposed to be on my team! Other people might think that we’re in a bad place or something and or judge me for putting up with that kind of behavior from someone who’s supposed to love me. It sucks, I don’t want people to think that I’m the type of girl who tolerates being a doormat. It has to stop, otherwise, I’m stopping the relationship.
  7. I feel inadequate. He just wants me to succeed as much as he wants to do the same for himself, but every time he shakes his head at me, I feel like an eternal failure. Will there ever come a point where he’s happy with things and nothing needs to change? It’s super unlikely…
  8. I realize that all of this is because he’s insecure. Of course this is all happening because he’s not confident in himself and where he is in life. As long as he can make sure his relationship is “perfect,” he can breathe easy because he feels like he’s in control. He feels like a nobody unless everything is the way he envisions it in his head. That sounds really exhausting to me, but that’s just who he is, I guess.
  9. He acts like he never does anything wrong. He’s always criticizing every little thing I do, meanwhile, the second I try to correct him, he comes back with a laser-quick response on why he’s not doing anything wrong. It’s like he refuses to even consider that he might be human too. It’s so frustrating!
  10. He’s quick to shoot me down when I’m up. If I come to him with some exciting news, his instant response is, “Are you sure this is happening?” He’s so skeptical of anything that’s different than what he knows. It’s like everything is too good to be true for him, but if he doesn’t play his cards right, I definitely will be.
Jennifer is a playwright, dancer, and theatre nerd living in the big city of Toronto, Canada. She studied Creative Writing at Concordia University and works as a lifestyle writer who focuses on Health, B2B, Tech, Psychology, Science, Food Trends and Millennial Life. She's also a coreographer, playwright, and lyricist, with choreography credits for McMaster University’s “Spring Awakening,” “Roxanne” for the Guelph Contemporary Dance Festival, and “The Beaver Den” for The LOT, among others.

You can see more of her work on her Contently page and follow her on Instagram @jenniferenchin.