Manipulate, control, restrain, hold back...however you want to put it. I have noticed that just about every wife I have talked on a personal basis has been a part of "Operation Manipulate" when their S/O deploys. (of course this applies to GF and fiances too)
You know how they do when they feel like they have lost all control over everything because they are gone? Let's start with some examples of "Operation Manipulate", shall we? Here we go. Have you ever heard (on a more obsessive level, not just in reg conversation)....
...where were you?
...who are you talking to?
...what are you doing?
...you need to be on the computer when I get on (but then they complain that you are "always" on the computer)
...email me when you go somewhere so I know what you're doing
...you don't need to *insert what fits you here*, I can't do it because I'm over here
And some more extreme ones...
...if you keep going to visit people I will stop paying the car insurance so you can't drive.
...if you don't answer the phone every time I call I will have the phone shut off so you can't talk to anyone.
Or how about these...
...I am alone, you're not here for me (when in fact you are)
...you don't send me boxes (when in fact you have sent 20)
...I can do this alone, I don't need you
The examples can keep coming. They spout all this crap, knowing it is going to make you upset. They try to guilt you into doing what they want you to do all because they are deployed. "But I'm over here...."
Playing on your emotions because they KNOW you care and want to do what you can to make the deployment easier and to put their minds at ease.
You wonder, where did this green-eyed monster come from? This wasn't the man I knew before he left. When they come home, they are nothing like that. For those who have gone through multiple deployments it becomes a cycle.
How do you know you've been hit by "Operation Manipulate"? You've been hit if you have ever had a moment where you take a step back and basically say, "WTF is his problem? What is he talking about?" You are completely dumbfounded at him.
How do we handle it? Well, some handle it in many different ways. Bitch at them, ignore them, appease them.... I can't say there is any one particular right way, but maybe a combo of all is good. *wink* LOL
You may be able to find some helpful information here...
That's about it for my little "rant". =)