Posted by: SIGH | 2009-01-21

Miserable husband

Hi Doc,

I' m at a very, very low today. My husband is an absolute jerk on the road. He is always angry. He does not give my family much respect and believes that he is always right, thus nobody argues much with him and I know it is because they don' t want to make me unhappy.

I do often try to tell him where he goes wrong as I hate people talking about my husband, and often enough they mention things that makes them unhappy about him, eg. they feel that everyone has a right to an opinion, but he always feels that he is right and they are the stupids. He is always abrupt in his manner of speaking to them and frowns at them a lot. He even often speaks abruptly to me, but when it comes to the opposite sex (outsiders), he is sooooo sweet, smiling and talking nicely to these females. What is this!

My one cousin told me how offended she felt when we invited them over one day as he did not once speak to her, and ordered her off his computer as " she is using up his bandwidth and this costs lots of money" . Bull! I put her on there for a few mins as she wanted to check something out. He was exceptionally unpleasant that day. My cousin now feels that as much as she would like to visit me at my house, I must please not invite her any more if my husband is going to be present.

I often tell him really nicely on the road to be calm, and rather drive in the left lane. He refuses to, and everybody is wrong, except him. Now another cousin' s colleague told her (and she told me in turn) how he once was on their car' s backside all the time and then swerves to the middle, and so forth and eventually when my husband passed them, he gave them a very angry look. Doc, this happens all the time, but now it is happening to colleagues of my family, and when I spoke to him about it earlier today, he flipped. His answer was: " Oh, he' s one of those drivers who cruise in the right lane, he should obey rules" . He doesn' t get it. How come everyone is wrong, except him.

He needs anger management, He went for counseling, but he does not stick with it. I feel really angry and upset today. What should I do?

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Our expert says:
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Presumably he was like this when you married him ? Or does this represent some recent change in his manner towards others ? And why do you feel it is YOUR responsibility to apologise for him or sort out the results of his selfish bad manners ? Make your OWN relationships with friends and family, and let him manage his own. IF he feels left out, don't nag, just remind him that people find his manners so unpleasant, that they don't want to invote him before he changes this. But his bad manners need not be a reason for you to miss company you would enjoy and who would enjoy you.
No counselling can help him unless he sticks with it and sincerely accepts that he needs to change. But stop protecting him from the natural condequences of his lousy behaviour --- that may help him to recognize that he is actually at fault, far better than telling him that

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Our users say:
Posted by: Nothing | 2009-01-21

Do absolutely nothing - one of these days sometone will force him off the road and give him a good slap. Sounds as if he needs it. Maybe lay off the " I often tell him nicely"  - it might sound as if you are always nagging? Your family members should not keep quiet and tell him as soon as he is abrupt that they don' t like his attitude - he sounds like a bully and he is obviously miserable about something. Ask (not nag) him to go for counselling again?

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