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Annie’s Mailbox: Insecure mate needs ongoing therapy

Kathy Mitchell/Marcy Sugar

Dear Annie: I have been married to my second husband for six years. While we were dating, he was romantic, thoughtful, caring, hardworking – everything I was looking for. I could count on him to be there for me and help with the stress of being a single parent.

Over the years, I have discovered he is not that guy. He is insecure and controlling. He demanded the passwords to my e-mail and bank accounts, looks at my cell phone call logs, had a tracking device put in my car to monitor where I went and even showed up at my work picnic to secretly observe what I was doing.

My life is an open book, but he had it in his mind that I was cheating on him. He found nothing because there is nothing to find. I have been faithful to him since Day One. He has gone for counseling, and it helped some, but he still gets angry if a man looks at me for more than a second or talks to me too long. He gets upset if someone says I look younger than my age or that he looks older. He yells, blows things way out of proportion and accuses me of behaving inappropriately. I am really getting tired of it.

His insecurities come from his past relationships. Do you think he will ever get over this nonsense? If he doesn’t, he will certainly drive me away. – Good Wife from Iowa

Dear Iowa: Your husband displays traits of a potential abuser and could become dangerous. He needs therapy on an ongoing basis in order to learn how to let go of damaging behavior and embrace healthier responses to his insecurities. If he is willing to work on this and you see definite improvement, there is hope. Otherwise, he is likely to get worse and so is your marriage. Be careful.

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to anniesmailbox@ comcast.net, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, P.O. Box 118190, Chicago, IL 60611.
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