be on a tight leash

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be on a tight leash

To be strictly controlled (by someone); to not be allowed very much independence or autonomy. George has been on a tight leash with his husband ever since he gambled away their life savings at a poker match. Everyone feels like they're on a tight leash at the office ever since that new manager took over.
See also: leash, on, tight
References in periodicals archive ?
This is not to say they are on a tight leash. In fields like, say, molecular biology, we approximate the ideal of disinterested inquiry fairly well, producing excellent, reliable knowledge.