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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

SL Letter of the Day: The Wedding Party

Posted by on Tue, Apr 22, 2014 at 5:19 PM

I'm newly married to a disgustingly sexy blond, blue-eyed hunk. Every day I wonder how lucky I am—excuse me. How lucky I was. He's absolutely great and I don't wish to trade him for anything in the world. Except for a few faults I believed us to be pretty happy and comfortable with our relationship.

Until this past week.

I found out last minute my husband's family had paid for a week's holiday in Mexico and a lot of my husband's family was going as his step-sister was getting married. Yet my husband was asked to keep the trip a secret from me. I found out and told him he could go, if he wanted to go without me, but he would be returning to divorce papers. My husband then called his mom and said he would not be going unless his wife was sitting next to him. Honestly, I told him I would of rather not go, seeing as I wasn't invited. But once I learned that my ticket had been purchased and that we were leaving a few days later I tried to repress my anger. When I arrived with my husband in Mexico I was told that I had to be on my "best behavour" as any outbursts or verbal disagreements we've had in our relationship of two years had been shared with his immediate family and everyone was scared that I would ruin my step-sister-in-law's wedding! I waited until I was in a closed room with my husband and freaked out. I demanded to know what the hell they were talking about!

The rest of this epic question—and my response—after the jump...

After five minutes listening to a bunch of mumble jumble about my temper I interrupted and stated that when I walk into my home after a long day at work—where I contribute financially to have some personal space—I should be able to do whatever I want in the comfort of my own home! That means if I have a bad day at work, for example, I should be able to stomp my feet, scream, cry, anything—even have "tantrums" like a two-year-old child—and if my husband whom I trust happens to be in the home, he should respect my choices! Another example: If we have a argument we should be able to argue and go to bed and wake up and start another day! But in Mexico I find out that every tantrum and every argument we've ever shared has been being broadcast to his entire family! Which is absolutely none of their business! We didn't need their help when we eloped alone and we didn;t need them holding our hands now! I thought we could trust each other enough to keep certain things private! I mean there's a limit to what in-laws or parents should know! He agreed he broke my trust but that didn't change the fact that I had to tiptoe around the entire vacation!

But wait! This gets better! Day five comes—the wedding—and I get all dolled up and we go witness the ceremony, stand for three hours while each of the family members has to get family pics taken, yet I noticed I wasn't asked to be in any except one. As we walked to the celebration dinner held out on the beach, I'm told the family doesn't respect or believe in our marriage because they weren't there! (We eloped!) So I sit, a strained grin on my face, and share in their dinner with a stomach full of butterflies. I have a couple of sips of wine and then begin to not feel so good. I excused myself from the table and went up to my hotel room and vomited. When I came back down I saw the clock and thought to my self, "It is impossible that I was gone for over an hour!" Still not feeling great I walk in the direction of the table where I am supposed to sit next to my husband when this blonde woman female—don't know who the hell she is—stops me and says do not try and take my husband away from his sisters wedding. I looked at her and laughed in her face. I did not appreciate being threatened! I walked up to my husband where I was scolded for interrupting a social conversation and I was asked to leave and wait for my husband up in our room. I cried all the way up.

Two hours later I was puking, not seeing straight, and felt absolutely messed off of two sips of wine (how is that possible?!?), when suddenly my husband comes walking in the room. He says he had no idea I was up in our room waiting that long and tells me he only came up because he needed to get some photo album for everyone to sign downstairs in the disco. I kicked his ass out and threw that album off the ninth floor balcony. Ten minutes later security and bridesmaids are opening my door begging for a "book." I don't have it, I tell them. I dumped out every suitcase and I was so groggy and that I could barely hold my eyes open when a security officer asked if I was okay. I swore and told them all to get the f##k out of my room and let me sleep. The door finally shuts and it is at that exact moment that I realized that I had been drugged. I didn't know by whom nor did i care. I got up and walked in my bare feet through the hotel, down the elevator, and into the loud lance bar disco where I walked straight up to my husband and hit him as hard as I could with my closed fist. Without a word I walked right back out, found a place to sit down, and asked a random stranger for a smoke. Seconds later my husband goes running right past me crying. He sees me and sits down and claims he was waiting for me the entire time. He says the reason someone told me to leave him alone was because the family feels I take up too much of his time and don't let him socialize enough with them. I got up and walked away and found a private room where I slept alone that night. Not one person tried to checked on me.

I was ill the last two days giving my husband plenty of family time and my illness did not prevent him from enjoying the beach, the pool, and shopping in town with his family. The day we left I told him what happened and that his entire family included themselves in this scheme to drug me.

I am now home two days and can't decide what to do now. And now my husband has decided to take a month off of work because—OF COURSE—both his parents and grandparents are moving from big homes to little condos and they all need his help all day long, every day, for the next month!

I told him I am taking back my maiden name and I asked him to stop all contact with his obsessive family for one week while we decide what our future plans are. But honestly I didn't know I married his frickin' family and I am very astonished that so much went on behind my back and I'm so very hurt.

Please give me some advice!

Suddenly Questioning Everything


One of the known knowns of the advice-column racket (ACR) is that the columnist only has the letter writer's version of events to go on. We get one side of the story. LWs, as they're known in the ACR, typically omit details that make them look bad while including details that make their spouses, lovers, friends, families, and coworkers look monstrous. Another known known: Advice columnists have a natural, reflexive tendency to side with LWs. People who ask us for our advice are paying us a compliment—they're telling us that they value our judgment—and that fact alone leaves advice columnists feeling positively disposed toward our LWs.... and negatively disposed toward anyone who has wronged our LWs.

And on top of those known knowns, there's this: a great many readers believe that the ACR obligates columnists to always side with our LWs. A columnist who slams an LW—even in a case where the LW is quite obviously in the wrong—is inevitably taken to task in the comments thread. Since an advice columnist almost always sides with LWs, and since this particular LW obviously expected the columnist to take their side (otherwise how do you explain the inclusion of so many damning, self-incriminating details?), the columnist is guilty of blindsiding a hapless LW.

All of which brings me to this: today's LW puts me in a tough spot. It's almost impossible to take her side. The details she includes are simply too self-incriminating. Buying into her version of events, to take just one example, requires me to look at these two options...

A. She got food poisoning at a resort in Mexico and was sick for a couple of days.

B. Someone in her husband's family slipped a drug into her drink that induced the symptoms of food poisoning and that dastardly act didn't just result in her behaving precisely the way her husband's family feared she might, it justified and excused her behavior.

...and to go with "B" as the likelier scenario.

But... fuck it. I'm going to go with B. I have a plane to catch and my car is waiting and taking the side of the LW is always easier. So here goes:

You must divorce your husband, SQE. This marriage cannot be saved. Your husband's family is dangerous and unstable and abusive and the only way to get them out of your life—permanently—is to end your marriage. And while ending a marriage is always sad, SQE, you have to ask yourself this: Could you in good conscience remain married to a man who didn't immediately come and find you in the secret hiding place to which you had retreated after you punched him in the face with a closed fist in front of his entire family at a wedding that you promised not to disrupt? I thought not. Call a lawyer, SQE, and file for divorce.

And forward your lawyer's bills to your soon-to-be ex-husband's family. I'm sure they would be only to happy to pay them.


Comments (100) RSS

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Dougsf 1
Well done, sir.
Posted by Dougsf on April 22, 2014 at 5:29 PM · Report this
harmonyak 2
Wowwww. She lost my sympathy at "I come home every day and throw tantrums like a 2-year-old."
Posted by harmonyak on April 22, 2014 at 5:36 PM · Report this
debug 3
I really don't see anyway to side with the LW.

She thinks its fine to come home and throw tantrums and her husband has to suffer silently because...marriage?

She has just about the ugliest personality I've read in awhile and it was from her point of view. Would love to hear the family's side.

Posted by debug on April 22, 2014 at 5:37 PM · Report this
Your inlaws sound pretty horrid, in terms of not initially inviting you, but you sound like you have precisely the temper you are accused of. DYA (Dump Yourself Already)
Posted by Hanoumatoi on April 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM · Report this
RTam 5
Oh, that poor guy! I have never pitied a LW's spouse more than I do this one. What a horrible mistake to marry THAT mess of crazy. Wow.
Posted by RTam on April 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM · Report this
TheMisanthrope 6
That was a brilliant letter.

She owns her fucked-uppedness. So, her husband must love her. Or, he's gay and married a beard. Or, most likely, he's trying to get citizenship and she knows he can't leave her.
Posted by TheMisanthrope on April 22, 2014 at 5:44 PM · Report this
wastelanderone 7
I knew this wasn't going to end well from the beginning of the letter.

LW's husband had three choices about the wedding:
1) Go to his sisters wedding by himself and come home to a divorce
2) Get a ticket for his wife to come even though it would make everyone miserable
3) Don't go to his sisters wedding and have his family furious at him

Poor guy
Posted by wastelanderone on April 22, 2014 at 5:46 PM · Report this
Posted by Why are there cars? on April 22, 2014 at 5:48 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 9
Whichever party here is a monster should be immediately dumped.
Posted by MacCrocodile on April 22, 2014 at 5:49 PM · Report this
Also, pretty sure Lundberg fucked her.
Posted by Cat Brother on April 22, 2014 at 5:51 PM · Report this
biffp 11
@6, or, he married a crazy bitch who is hot as hell, and he's realized he's way over his head. I love the answer to this letter. She may be cool (down deep inside), but she is nuts - even based her own side of the story.
Posted by biffp on April 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM · Report this
TheMisanthrope 12
@11 Seriously? If I had a man that had tantrums like that every day, I'd divorce him. I don't care how hot he or the sex was.
Posted by TheMisanthrope on April 22, 2014 at 5:56 PM · Report this
Unregistered User 13
Everyone involved sounds crazy and damned if they did and damned if they didn't, I feel like you could take that reply and replace "SQE" with "spouse of SQE" (and still forward the bill to his family, because Jesus)
Posted by Unregistered User on April 22, 2014 at 6:02 PM · Report this
Repost to "I, Anonymous"?
Posted by Mr. Happy Sunshine on April 22, 2014 at 6:11 PM · Report this
I was married to a man who came home and threw tantrums every day, who was accused of keeping me from socializing with my family and friends, who eventually punched me in the face. I'm not anymore.
Posted by smarternow on April 22, 2014 at 6:13 PM · Report this
I'll take the LW's side.

If the LW is crazy, this is milieu therapy gone seriously twisted. I know from having a wedding which will have crazy/actively substance abusing family members in attendance, and the in-laws were actively trying to sink her.

So, you take someone who is a bit of a hothead. Then ask her husband to come to a destination wedding in another country without his wife--and to even keep it a secret from her. Conspicuously leave her out of family photos. Get someone to keep her away from her own husband--her only support person in a hostile environment--at the reception. This is a setup.

Shenanigans like these don't bring out the best in anyone, and if she's already a bit of a hothead they are going to get what they wanted, and be able to scapegoat her.
Posted by milkshake on April 22, 2014 at 6:13 PM · Report this
Didn't know you were marrying his frickin family?? Have I got news for you. News you don't want to hear. Cuz you punched him in front of everyone and now no one likes you. Well, that's on you. You sound like a piece of work with anger management issues--deal with it.

Do the man a favor and divorce him. Then go into counseling.
Posted by phuni44 on April 22, 2014 at 6:15 PM · Report this
biffp 18
@12, he's going to have to bail. The tantrums sound kind of hot, but I wouldn't be married to that either. From the first line of the letter, it sounds like these two are young and shallow - kind of modern-day Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
Posted by biffp on April 22, 2014 at 6:16 PM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 19
The letter smells of a big side to the story that isn't being told.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on April 22, 2014 at 6:35 PM · Report this
nocutename 20
See? Now wasn't this gem of a letter worth enduring all those reruns for? Thanks Dan!
Posted by nocutename on April 22, 2014 at 6:37 PM · Report this
this guy I know in Spokane 21
"Except for a few faults I believed us to be pretty happy and comfortable with our relationship."

Posted by this guy I know in Spokane on April 22, 2014 at 6:38 PM · Report this
re: "Talking Shit" with Dominic Holdem....

why the fuck don't Danny Warbucks and Keck spring for a dental plan?
Posted by eeehh....What's Up, Doc? on April 22, 2014 at 6:39 PM · Report this
nocutename 23
I'm tempted to go all Mr. Vennominon on their asses and say that they should stay married because they so totally deserve each other.
Posted by nocutename on April 22, 2014 at 6:40 PM · Report this
biffp 24
@22, that's just mean. Is that you, SQE?
Posted by biffp on April 22, 2014 at 6:42 PM · Report this
If I thought I was drugged my response would be to call for medical help, not to punch my partner who didn't do it in the face. I don't see anything in this letter that can possible justify that punch. We only have one side of the story, and her own side makes her look like an abusive spouse. I have trouble believing she was drugged with something that made her capable of walking around and finding her husband but incapable of refraining from punching him in the face. I don't care how angry you are, you don't get to offensively punch someone.
Posted by uncreative on April 22, 2014 at 6:52 PM · Report this
Who says the Advice Columnist has to take the side of the Letter Writer? The closest I ever come to that is that the Advice Columnist should treat the letter at face value -- in other words, not call Fake -- because it is completely useless to write in for advice on how to handle a problem that you know perfectly well did not go down the way you recounted it. Treat it as at least hypothetically true and answer the question that was asked, not the revised version that you made up.

Taking this letter at face value, Letter Writer you are an astonishing piece of work. Seriously, you expect to be able to come home from work and throw a Terrible Two's Tantrum, and hubby should just accept and support that? Fuck you. You want to act like a two year old, you should be treated like one, which in this case means you don't get invited to parties because you act out. I don't blame them for wanting to keep you home from the wedding for fear of spoiling things -- which you ended up doing in spades when you punched your husband as hard as you could in public, not to mention throwing the book off the ninth floor balcony. (Damned lucky you didn't kill someone doing that, asshole.) The only possible justifiable explanation for that would be that you were out of your mind from the drugs, but you clearly aren't going for that excuse in your narrative, so i have to conclude you meant it and you stand by it. That makes you a domestic violence abuser, in addition to an emotional toddler.

And no, you didn't have to "tiptoe around the wedding." You had to behave like an adult in public. Which you failed to do.
Posted by avast2006 on April 22, 2014 at 6:56 PM · Report this
I Hate Screen Names 27
She has to be ridiculously hot, and they have to have gotten married ridiculously young. By the time you reach your mid-20s, you learn that "hot but crazy" is for fucking, not marrying.

Posted by I Hate Screen Names on April 22, 2014 at 6:56 PM · Report this
seandr 28
@biffp: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof?

I could maybe see this as a production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof that spectacularly crashes and burns opening night because the director miscast Courtney Love in the lead role.
Posted by seandr on April 22, 2014 at 6:58 PM · Report this
Dougsf 29
@16 but they tried their damnest to keep her from being there, and she acted out the exact scenario they were wishing to avoid. Not even Edmond Dantès would tank his own wedding just to teach someone a lesson.

At first I wanted to credit him for standing up for his wife to his family, but I actually think he's just afraid of her; hence telling her a passive-aggressive "I'm helping my parents move... for a month!" instead of "we're separated."

Confidential [retrospectively] to LW, you're separated.

Goddamn this was a classic.
Posted by Dougsf on April 22, 2014 at 7:04 PM · Report this
This week's Dear Prudence featured a letter which turned out to be the plot of the 'Til Tuesday video "Voices Carry."…

Any chance this is also a reference to a song? Maybe we have a serial submitter here...
Posted by EricaP on April 22, 2014 at 7:13 PM · Report this
I'm going with C) she got drunk off of way more than two innocent little sips of wine, she gets drunk and angry often at home, and at least she was honest about throwing tantrums about every little thing. The husband (and his family) is much, much better off without her.
Posted by treehugger on April 22, 2014 at 7:33 PM · Report this
biffp 32
@28, Lindsay Lohan could reprise her horrible Liz Taylor imitation (that was not acting in Liz & Dick). Who uses a miscarriage as an excuse? That girl needs to get back to rehab.

@27, totes.
Posted by biffp on April 22, 2014 at 7:36 PM · Report this
Okay everyone is right. I did think IF accurately described, dishing on every argument to your family is not good. Then again, the reason I don't dish is because I want my family to like my spouse. Maybe if I was looking for an out, I'd be more forthcoming.
Posted by wxPDX on April 22, 2014 at 7:44 PM · Report this
JunieGirl 34
Were they 10 when they got married? She can't possibly be older than 12 based on her behavior.
Posted by JunieGirl on April 22, 2014 at 8:01 PM · Report this
this is one of the few letters I assumed was fake. It's just too, too over the top and the LW is too ridiculously unaware. If by chance this is a real letter, I'm with @31 - this wasn't food poisoning, it was getting shitfaced at a wedding she didn't want to attend. And I'd guess the husband's "not working for a month to help family members move" situation is an intervention to get him out of an abusive situation.
Posted by genevieve on April 22, 2014 at 8:18 PM · Report this
persimmon 36
I have not always appreciated the idiosyncracies of my own in-laws--and not inviting me to a family wedding would have seriously hurt my feelings. But I would NEVER ask my husband to choose my feelings over his family. The bitchiness of his family is irrelevant to our relationship, and starting a fight over it would be giving them exactly what they wanted (surely they expected this insult to be made obvious sooner or later; he was going away to Mexico without his wife, after all). The better revenge would be to send your husband away on his own, as they requested, and let him be your own spokesperson at the wedding. Let your presence be missed, rather than regretted.

Then again, the trick is to be the kind of spouse your husband would brag to his family about--and it doesn't look like LW has mastered that.
Posted by persimmon on April 22, 2014 at 8:24 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 37
@31: Yeah, sounds like sobriety should come with the maiden name.
Posted by undead ayn rand on April 22, 2014 at 8:35 PM · Report this
That poor, stupid husband. Yet, if this description is even vaguely accurate, the in-laws are horrible too. They thought they could sneak her husband to Mexico for a wedding? Then when she found out last minute they bought a ticket for her? Then they told her to wait for her husband upstairs? Then he comes up for a fucking photo album? In-laws are either the dumbest people in the world, or they were setting her up.
Posted by tejanojim on April 22, 2014 at 8:35 PM · Report this
She doesn't say she punched him in the face, just as hard as she could with a closed fist. Could have been in the chest or shoulder. Still crazy and abusive, not necessarily a preemptive face puncher.
Posted by tejanojim on April 22, 2014 at 8:42 PM · Report this
@39 Oh well that changes... absolutely nothing about the situation. So glad to clear that up.

I mean, yeah, it's good to clear up a misunderstanding. It just is totally irrelevant in this case. I also agree that a husband shouldn't relay constant private details to family and family shouldn't invite the husband and not the wife to a family gathering. But none of that excuses punches someone as hard as you can.
Posted by uncreative on April 22, 2014 at 8:48 PM · Report this
@16 The family does sound like a piece of work, but they also could be circling the wagons due the presence of an abuser.

And hell none of this explains the tantrums, the punching, the throwing the book off a balcony, the deciding that being nauseous must mean she was drugged, and the dozens of other red flags that pop up.
Posted by msanonymous on April 22, 2014 at 9:02 PM · Report this
Alanmt 42
Hmmmm. I didn't know my ex-wife had gotten married again. Sorry. blond hunk. No, I won't take her back.

But hey, if you're as hot as she says, come on over. We'll have a few beers and you can cry on my chest.
Posted by Alanmt on April 22, 2014 at 9:05 PM · Report this
Taking the descriptions at face value, the family is nothing short of astoundingly stupid, too.

I was told that ... I demanded to know what the hell they were talking about!"

"They" were talking about? So this was said by "they," meaning family members? It's like they are trying their hardest to antagonize her.

"As we walked to the celebration dinner held out on the beach, I'm told the family doesn't respect or believe in our marriage because they weren't there! (We eloped!)"

More baiting from a family member?

"this blonde woman female—don't know who the hell she is—stops me and says do not try and take my husband away from his sisters wedding."

Again, who is it that's trying to pick a fight here? You don't physically block someone from going to talk to their spouse at a party. You just don't.

And then, "You're interrupting a social conversation, you need to leave, go upstairs and wait for your husband." Seriously? What the fuck is this, kindergarten? She should have thrown up on whoever said that. And he acquiesced to having his wife summarily dismissed? And tried to justify it afterwards to her, saying that family thinks she doesn't let him spend enough time with them? Whose thumb is he under?

There isn't one sane person in the entire narrative.
Posted by avast2006 on April 22, 2014 at 9:07 PM · Report this
avast2006 is right about everything!
Posted by Racing Turtles on April 22, 2014 at 9:20 PM · Report this
nocutename 45
@43, avast2006 says, There isn't one sane person in the entire narrative. Truer words were never written. Through in the typos, bad grammar, and hyperbole, and I haven't enjoyed a letter so much in a long time.
Posted by nocutename on April 22, 2014 at 9:27 PM · Report this
nocutename 46
Mr. Ven, I hope you are reading to see what I did @45. I'm afraid no one will realize I'm joking.
Posted by nocutename on April 22, 2014 at 9:46 PM · Report this
Speaking of "culture news," were Dan and the rest of you guys thinking of commenting on the Bryan Singer gay pedophile ring story?
Posted by Billy Chav on April 22, 2014 at 9:48 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 48
@43: The weirdest thing was, if she was trying to play the naif with how she's probably revising the in-law behavior, you'd think she'd tone down the references to abusing her husband.
Posted by undead ayn rand on April 22, 2014 at 10:10 PM · Report this
Paul Pearson 49
That means if I have a bad day at work, for example, I should be able to stomp my feet, scream, cry, anything—even have "tantrums" like a two-year-old child—and if my husband whom I trust happens to be in the home, he should respect my choices!

Errm, no. If you're cognitively making those choices to go over the top the minute you check in at home, if your coping option is to clock in at six and start going all Bobby Knight on the dining room chairs, he does not have to respect that choice at all. He shouldn't retaliate or make it worse, but he shouldn't have to respect it. Silver lining: If tables were turned, you wouldn't have to either.

However I'm not convinced this letter's real -- it reads like someone in the Bravo Network's writers room got their hands on nitrous oxide and pumped it into the water supply -- but in case these people really exist, yes, divorce, immediately, don't care who starts it.
Posted by Paul Pearson on April 22, 2014 at 10:53 PM · Report this
long-time reader 50
Dear Diary,

Today I learned that "a request for advice" can be synonymous with "a cry for help". Wow.
Posted by long-time reader on April 22, 2014 at 11:00 PM · Report this
seandr 51
@avast2006: You're completely ignoring the fact that the husband reached out to his family for help with his domestic problems, which are almost certainly much worse than what's described here, and what's described here is actually pretty bad.
Posted by seandr on April 22, 2014 at 11:57 PM · Report this
Good heavens. If the LW is real, how did she get to become a functioning adult? I get angry enough that I would very much have wanted to do the things described in this letter. But most of us learn enough about empathy and consequences to know that these things hurt others, and that people will reject us as a result. Never has a letter writer seemed more in need of psychiatric support.
Posted by misspiggy on April 23, 2014 at 3:14 AM · Report this
MythicFox 53
Wait. Wait. Wait. Wait. She's been married to this guy for two years (and who knows how long they were together before that) and she's just now finding out that there's friction between her and the husband's family? And it just so happens that they eloped, thus avoiding having to deal with his family at their own wedding?

If this letter is real, even if this woman's side of the story is exactly as she says and she's simply kind of a pain in the ass at home and having a bunch of nutjobs hate her for it, these people need to get the hell away from each other ASAFP. For both their sakes.

If she's made up a bunch of bullshit to make herself look better than she does (which I honestly hate to imagine a world where she could actually look worse), these people need to get the hell away from each other ASAFP. For both their sakes.

But even by the standards of what's likely a fake letter, this seems a little contrived. It feels like someone's writing a novel where this is happening, doesn't know what to do about the relationship, and is writing Dan in the hopes that he'll offer something inspirational. (or, just as likely, the character in the novel is turning to an advice columnist and the author wants an 'authentic' answer)
Posted by MythicFox on April 23, 2014 at 4:51 AM · Report this
LW, LW, LW.... Where to begin? First off, if you want to sound not crazy, stop with the exclamation points. 12 in a row is a dead giveaway that you've got the crazy eyes. And probably the husband punching. Stop with that. Abusive spouse =/= sane looking. You upped the ante but not in the right way. What you should have done was put yourself in the hospital for the remainder of your stay, preferably via ambulance, preferably during the reception. You got drugged w/ anonymous substance, right? Hospital. They don't show up to see you? Buh-Bye guilt free, the bastards. Otherwise, husband is required to be at your hip the whole time, or you play the suffering martyr. This was amateur hour in crazy town, subpar performance. They could have put you in jail for assault, you idiot. And you would have deserved it, you gloriously oblivious lunatic.
Posted by gnot on April 23, 2014 at 5:16 AM · Report this
Alanmt 55
borderline personality disorder?
Posted by Alanmt on April 23, 2014 at 5:34 AM · Report this
Ms Cute - I did notice.

Mr Alan@42 - So, what was your excuse? I am getting a vision of you being doped, told the next morning that you'd had your way with her, then presented with a false pregnancy (more or less what happened to Hamish Macbeth in one of Ms Beaton's mysteries); I don't know what else will acquit you on a charge of deplorable taste.
Posted by vennominon on April 23, 2014 at 6:19 AM · Report this
LW is an abuser. They always think they are the victims.

Reverse the genders as reread this letter. Picture LW as a 200 lb man and spouse as a 100lb woman. A lot more chilling then.

The family's behavior would make sense and be logical in that scenario. They are trying to intervene and to shield the H from Ws abuse.

Their behavior, as described, only makes sense if (1) they are also batshit crazy or (2) they know she's abusive and bringing the husband alone was to be an intervention.

The other alternative is her narrative is not accurate.....

Posted by ABW on April 23, 2014 at 6:27 AM · Report this
Very good point brought up by @57 and others, there are some serious red flags and perhaps the wedding was an intervention, though it would be a strange setting for an intervention.

Nonetheless if it was the husband who came home to scream, stomp his feet and throw tantrums eveyone would see it for the abusing and intimidating behavior that it is. Throw in a punch and the husband would be a clear abuser . I'm glad to see that the wife (LW) has been identified as such. The husband needs to get to a safe place, which the month long "moving help" seems to be.

The only question is whether the wife is a conscious abuser or just very fucked up.
Posted by Pate on April 23, 2014 at 7:10 AM · Report this
Where is the Love? Sounds like this man married a woman just like members of his family of origin.. Manipulative and self serving ..
He needs to leave em all behind .. LW, you present such unpleasant personality traits, and seem to have no insight into them/ try a retreat maybe/ sit with your own crazy mind for a while, see how ugly it is. And change it..
Posted by LavaGirl on April 23, 2014 at 7:25 AM · Report this
Alanmt 60
@56 ven: Simply put, I was young and naïve and not too experienced with dating and she was beautiful and charming and talented (when she wasn't crazy and raging) and I fell into the white knight trap of thinking I could save her.
Posted by Alanmt on April 23, 2014 at 7:54 AM · Report this
ferret 61
What stood out in SQS's letter is having no contact or minimal conversation with others, besides her husband. I would think that she would bond with someone at the wedding, or have someone that can identify or relate to her.

Half the time while reading this story, she took a situation where she could had lower tension or resolve some conflict and escalated it instead...
Posted by ferret http://!/okojo on April 23, 2014 at 8:07 AM · Report this
AmyC 62
Oh, I absolutely believe this shit is real. This woman is clearly abusing her husband emotionally and (at least once) physically. Family is doing their best to intervene and help the husband (and it's certainly plausible that some of the family members are more assertive about it than others, which might explain the the instances of LW being told to go away). Remember that you can't take ANYTHING an abuser says at face value, especially when they're telling you a sob story about how others have wronged them. LW needs psychiatric help, and husband neets to GTFO, NOW.
Posted by AmyC on April 23, 2014 at 8:10 AM · Report this
Y.F. Redux 63
This tantrum throwing nut-case got the in-laws she deserves. Her husband needs to grow a pair and leave her like a grown up leaves a bad marriage instead of trying to sneak off to Mexico or "help his relatives move" like a chicken shit coward.
Posted by Y.F. Redux on April 23, 2014 at 8:58 AM · Report this
@57,58 While "I walked straight up to my husband and hit him as hard as I could with my closed fist. Without a word I walked right back out" more or less proves your abusive spouse theory, I think that attached to another letter (and letter writer), SQE's complaint "that every tantrum and every argument we've ever shared has been being broadcast to his entire family!" would be just, and the "tantrums" section would be about defining where she puts the line for disclosure (short of abuse, past acceptable public adult behavior).

You are totally correct that if we amp up the hypotheticals of the situation, the situation is much more dire; so the twice as massive husband would have to go out to the garage, down to his workshop, or whatever, in order to vent so explosively for it not to be threatening, but it should be possible for someone in a shared domestic arrangement to find the personal space to stay sane (and I acknowledge that SQE may be far too late on that front), without impacting their partners negatively.
Posted by Such Venting Is Not My Coping Mechanism on April 23, 2014 at 9:10 AM · Report this
@57 - part of the reason I thought the letter was fake was the too-obvious gender reversal of classic abuse (while still playing into gender stereotypes - the shill, tantrum-throwing female). I expected this to be an object lesson by Dan rather than a true letter.
Posted by genevieve on April 23, 2014 at 9:50 AM · Report this
LW: "my home after a long day at work—where I contribute financially to have some personal space—I should be able to do whatever I want"

To extract one spoonful of weird out of a bucket full of crazy, WTF does "I contribute financially to have some personal space" mean?

He charges her rent?
She works for her benefit, not the couple's?
Otherwise, she'd stay home, watch soaps, and eat bon-bons?

Posted by DAVIDinKENAI on April 23, 2014 at 9:50 AM · Report this
Occam's Razor, She's nuts.
Posted by clearlyhere on April 23, 2014 at 9:56 AM · Report this
WaddyJones 68
She displays classic bi-polar disorder accompanied with general shittiness.

I know from experience. I was married to a woman just like this. Although not ostracized for the first several years of our relationship she eventually became persona non grata amongst family and friends. Only after divorce did I realize all of this. He should run, especially before having kids. I have awesome kids but it extends how long I have to keep dealing with my ex.
Posted by WaddyJones on April 23, 2014 at 10:54 AM · Report this
Kevin_BGFH 69
I get the feeling that the LW talked her husband into eloping so that his family couldn't talk him out of the marriage during a longer engagement and wedding planning process.
Posted by Kevin_BGFH on April 23, 2014 at 11:11 AM · Report this
God help the world if those two have kids.
Posted by NotYourStrawMan on April 23, 2014 at 11:20 AM · Report this
@51: I agree that LW sounds like a classic abuser. It's just that their choice of time, place and manner for an intervention was mind-bogglingly stupid.
Posted by avast2006 on April 23, 2014 at 11:27 AM · Report this
AFinch 72
I'm with @11 and yes, she sounds like a classic abuser (@71) and @12, yes, but you'd be surprised how long insanely hot and good in bed can get you to blind yourself.
Posted by AFinch on April 23, 2014 at 11:58 AM · Report this
You don't have to unfairly stack the deck in the gender reversal in order to make the point. Imagine that the two of them are the same height, the same weight, and can bench press the same amount.

Now, LW, imagine that you are the quiet one in the relationship (I know that will be hard for you), and it is your husband, who is exactly as big and strong as you, who makes a regular thing of coming home from work and throwing what amounts to a two year old's tantrum (your word for it). He literally screams, yells, cries, stomps his feet, punches things, until his angry energy is expended. And you, the woman, are supposed to simply "trust him," "respect his choices," and quietly accept that he is entitled to this because he pays for half the rent? Seriously?

If it were the man doing this, you would instantly conclude he is an abusive asshole.

For that matter, there's a reason we don't put up with it in two year olds, either, stupid. We train them out of it because it's fucking obnoxious to live with at any age. Time to grow up, toddler girl.
Posted by avast2006 on April 23, 2014 at 12:00 PM · Report this
AFinch 74
@42 - you too, huh? Mine is remarried and I feel bad for the guy - he foolishly comingled DNA.

@55 - That would have been my armchair diagnosis for mine, yours? When she did a snow-job on the male therapist, I should've run like the wind.
Posted by AFinch on April 23, 2014 at 12:05 PM · Report this
AFinch 75
@66 - it means (she thinks) she's entitled to her behavior since she paid for the space to behave that way in.

Mine tried her damndest to ruin a friend's incredible destination wedding (Paris) where I was part of the wedding party. I was utterly humiliated and it worked as a way of further isolating me because I could not take her anywhere.
Posted by AFinch on April 23, 2014 at 12:14 PM · Report this
I find it kind of ironic that the LW refused to invite her husband's entire family to their wedding, but throws a tantrum when she is not invited to her husband's step-sister's family.
Posted by Buffy on April 23, 2014 at 12:44 PM · Report this
This is why I don't believe in validating feelings. Some people - lots of people - have feelings that aren't based in reality. Their feelings aren't valid. You shouldn't get a pat on the back for sharing your feelings, when they're wrong. Anything else is new-age mumbo-jumbo.
Posted by fetish on April 23, 2014 at 12:46 PM · Report this
keshmeshi 78

On the upside, consider how she would have behaved in the run-up to the wedding, or even on the actual wedding day. At least the husband spared himself and his family from that fate.
Posted by keshmeshi on April 23, 2014 at 1:08 PM · Report this
Alanmt 79
@74: Yes, it's the armchair diagnosis for mine. Years after we split I was researching BPD for a work project and the list of symptoms exactly mirrored a list of my ex-wife's "problems that I could not live with" I had made when finally deciding to divorce and live a happy life.
Posted by Alanmt on April 23, 2014 at 1:16 PM · Report this
I think the letter is "real" in that it describes a real situation lived out by the LW. But I highly suspect that the LW is the husband, and the story is his version of the events.
Posted by fetish on April 23, 2014 at 1:18 PM · Report this
aureolaborealis 81
@80: As someone who's had a couple of crazy and violent girlfriends over the years, I can say that there is nothing about the letter that screams This Has To Be A Guy to me.
Posted by aureolaborealis on April 23, 2014 at 1:59 PM · Report this
I can't believe the family didn't invite her. This is a wedding story that can echo through the generations. Do you remember when Mary punched John in the face during the reception and accused us all if drugging her?
Posted by beccoid on April 23, 2014 at 1:59 PM · Report this
I am with @23. They should stay married.

People from crazy families marry crazy people because it feels like home. While the LW sounds abusive, husband likes being abused. That's why he married her. And he can gossip about the LW and get they family stirred up about how he is being abused. And the LW has a husband who will put up with this- I ' stomp my feet, scream, cry, anything—even have "tantrums" like a two-year-old child'. People who will put up with that are few and far between.

The two of them are made for each other. They have a marriage made in hell and they should appreciate it.
Posted by Strangest on April 23, 2014 at 3:01 PM · Report this

I don't think you should have to stack the deck so, as small persons can abuse larger ones...just that the disparity drives the point home to those who don't easily see this as abusive
Posted by ABW on April 23, 2014 at 5:20 PM · Report this
@81 I'm with you, man. But it sounds a lot like something *I* might write about my GF when I get frustrated. I'm not debating that she's a piece of work, but I do see a letter that praises the husband effusively while also making a backwards defense of her own behavior.
Posted by fetish on April 23, 2014 at 6:00 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 86
@71: I wonder if she just invited herself to the wedding and showed up shitfaced.
Posted by undead ayn rand on April 23, 2014 at 6:15 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 87
Posted by undead ayn rand on April 23, 2014 at 6:21 PM · Report this
See: playing into someone's hands.

Perfect, perfect reply. Just perfect.

If this woman wasn't so self-incriminating, however, I would have liked to consider the issue of venting your relationship woes with your parents. My brother, a rageaholic and needs-to-be-studied-grade-A-misogynist, had built a case with my parents about his 2nd and 1/2 (don't ask) wife, who acted much like I imagined this LW does. I suspected that she had untreated bipolar disorder magnified by the PTSD of the abuse she suffered at his hands, the latter rationalized away as the melodrama of "true love."

My parents didn't want her in their house and that, surprise surprise, was cause for my brother's ire against them for mistreating and alienating his wife! More than once I said some variation on "Well, what did you expect?" to him. I also expressed my frustration with my parents that they entertained every down-phase in the abusive cycle, seeing my brother as purified victim suffering a crazy wife, mistaking the a zero sum game approach as effective parenting.

By the time of their inevitable divorce, I was a bit sad because I thought that they were in fact perfect for one another, in no small part because they had parents who would fuel their little soap opera.

So, yeah, bitch b crazy. But crazy begets crazy too.
Posted by maddy811 on April 24, 2014 at 8:59 AM · Report this
The most damning part of the letter for LW is that she doesn't have a frickin' clue how bat-shit crazy she comes across. She truely believes herself to be the person with clean hands in the whole scenario! If I was married to this wench I'd run like a fucking gazelle to get away from her.
Posted by Ibentrudaropes on April 24, 2014 at 1:03 PM · Report this
This wouldn't even make the top twenty in my family's long list of crazy. No one got stabbed or had a dog sic'd on 'em. No one had their front teeth knocked out or choked. No police involvement. The entire wedding party didn't get kicked out of the hotel/resort with a lifetime ban added to a large bill for repairs. This is why I never go to weddings or funerals or graduations or holiday dinners or any damn thing my family invites me to. Yes, I am the snob, the ingrate, the Mr. Fancy Pants who's too good for the rest of them. That part is right, I am too good for that nonsense. I swore when I was old enough to get away from the loony bin I would never look back. It's really much more fun when you get to hear it second hand from all the perpetrators. And the husband needs to DTMF yesterday.
Posted by kwodell on April 24, 2014 at 3:33 PM · Report this
FAKE FAKE FAKE. I bet a member of the family who doesn't like the wife wrote it.
Posted by bluebutterflygirl on April 24, 2014 at 4:08 PM · Report this
milemarker 92
Le coup de gras, Dan. Merci.
Posted by milemarker on April 24, 2014 at 5:14 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 93
@89: "She truely believes herself to be the person with clean hands in the whole scenario! "

Don't they all? I bet you she's got plenty of people in her carefully cultivated circle of "friends" who believe her.

@91: Well that's just silly.
Posted by undead ayn rand on April 24, 2014 at 7:39 PM · Report this
All abuse aside I dated a guy who was controlled by his family this way. No matter what we were doing if they "needed" him he dropped everything and went. The pinnacle being when a tree got blown over in the front yard and he had to help. When we got there it was a maybe 10 foot tall tree that was barely tilted and causing no harm, it could have been fixed anytime that week and be no worse off.
Among other reasons I eventually left him, I am thrilled to be married to a man now that has an awesome loving family.
Posted by KellyKJ on April 26, 2014 at 12:43 PM · Report this
shurenka 95
@16, I agree.

It sounds like the LW has serious, serious issues, but as someone who has issues with emotional regulation myself, I can say the family did actively try to sabotage her by doing everything to rub it in her face that they didn't like her and to make her feel as isolated as possible. It sounds like she is not in therapy or she would have mentioned it I assume. As of now, she is not treating her issues and her husband has no idea how to treat them either. If she doesn't get help, this marriage is doomed.

I am also tsk-tsking because it's unreasonable to expect to be able to throw fits in front of your SO. Especially, as I'm guessing she also expects him to be 100% attentive and supportive of her when she does this, and to go back to normal immediately when she calms down. If she has ERD or a similar disorder, that might be cathartic for her--but she should know that it is draining and cruel to others.
Posted by shurenka on April 26, 2014 at 9:43 PM · Report this
Contributing financially to the household does NOT buy you the right to throw tantrums in front of any other person living in the home. Animals, especially dogs as they are so sensitive to human moods, should not be subjected to that either. Heck, maybe not even plants. If you have the need to throw fits on a regular basis, you need to live alone with no other living being within earshot. Being a witness to someone else's anger, especially in your own home, is very stressful even when (or maybe especially when) you know you are not the cause of it. And nobody has so much stress you have to be angry all the time. That is a choice. If you are going to choose to be angry all the time, don't date and especially don't marry. You are undateable.
Posted by Diagoras on April 27, 2014 at 11:40 AM · Report this
Four words about LW : untreated Borderline personality disorder.

An educated guess on my part based on past experiences.
Posted by TC5998 on April 28, 2014 at 8:17 AM · Report this
LW is going through way too much for somebody to handle on their own. Because the LW is already looking for answers by asking Dan, I hope she can also kick it around with a sympathetic psychologist/psychiatrist.
Posted by SpaceGirl on April 28, 2014 at 6:24 PM · Report this
Eudaemonic 99
LW could do with some jail time. If she were a man, she'd have gotten it already.
Posted by Eudaemonic on April 30, 2014 at 6:20 AM · Report this
One hundredth!
Posted by Dan Savage on May 2, 2014 at 7:02 AM · Report this

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