Ask Natalie by Natalie Bencivenga

Boyfriend Sounds Too Controlling

DEAR NATALIE: I've been seeing this guy for several months. We are serious and are talking about moving in together. However, every time I stay over, it is very clear to me that there are spaces that are "off limits" to me. Certain things like his office space or his gym space he said I really have no reason to be in, anyway, so what is the big deal if it's an off-limits space? I asked him if I would have my own space then to make it fair, but he isn't willing to give up either of his personal spaces for me to have one (for instance, turning his gym into a home office for me or just sharing the office he already has with me).

I am really perplexed and not sure how to handle this. I want to move the relationship forward, but I feel as if he is hiding something. Any thoughts? -- NO LIMITS PLEASE

DEAR NO LIMITS PLEASE: I do not like the sound of this situation at all. My first thought -- is he cheating? It is very odd that he is dictating to you where you would be able to be in your own home. What do you mean that you couldn't go in his office? What is this, a bad Lifetime movie?

In a space where you coexist, there should be no limits. This is not 1810. You do not have to deal with this utter nonsense.

Reconsider this relationship. I doubt that this is the only thing that he is controlling over. Is this really the kind of relationship you want? He might as well put a sign on his door that says "Keep Out." And if that's the case, you might wear one of those signs around your body for a while ... catch my drift? Next!

Please send your relationship and lifestyle questions to or tweet them to @NBSeen. You can also send postal letters to Natalie Bencivenga, 358 North Shore Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15212

(This column was originally published by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.)