Well done, sir.
Wowwww. She lost my sympathy at "I come home every day and throw tantrums like a 2-year-old."
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.

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)
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.
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.
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
Whichever party here is a monster should be immediately dumped.
Also, pretty sure Lundberg fucked her.
@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.
@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.
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)
Repost to "I, Anonymous"?
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.
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.
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.
@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.
The letter smells of a big side to the story that isn't being told.
See? Now wasn't this gem of a letter worth enduring all those reruns for? Thanks Dan!
"Except for a few faults I believed us to be pretty happy and comfortable with our relationship."

re: "Talking Shit" with Dominic Holdem....

why the fuck don't Danny Warbucks and Keck spring for a dental plan?
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.
@22, that's just mean. Is that you, SQE?
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.
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.
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.

@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.
@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.
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...
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.
@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.
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.
Were they 10 when they got married? She can't possibly be older than 12 based on her behavior.
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.
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.
@31: Yeah, sounds like sobriety should come with the maiden name.
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.
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.
@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.
@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.
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.
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.
avast2006 is right about everything!
@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.
Mr. Ven, I hope you are reading to see what I did @45. I'm afraid no one will realize I'm joking.
Speaking of "culture news," were Dan and the rest of you guys thinking of commenting on the Bryan Singer gay pedophile ring story?
@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.
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.
Dear Diary,

Today I learned that "a request for advice" can be synonymous with "a cry for help". Wow.
@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.
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.
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)
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.
borderline personality disorder?
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.
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.....

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.
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..
@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.
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...
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.
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.
@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.
@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.
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?

Occam's Razor, She's nuts.
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.
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.
God help the world if those two have kids.
@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.
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.
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.
@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.
@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.
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.
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.

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.
@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.
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.
@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.
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?
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.

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
@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.
@71: I wonder if she just invited herself to the wedding and showed up shitfaced.
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.
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.
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.
FAKE FAKE FAKE. I bet a member of the family who doesn't like the wife wrote it.
Le coup de gras, Dan. Merci.
@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.
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.
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.
Four words about LW : untreated Borderline personality disorder.

An educated guess on my part based on past experiences.
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.
LW could do with some jail time. If she were a man, she'd have gotten it already.
One hundredth!

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