Dear Ms. Abedin,
People are perplexed. Your husband, Anthony Weiner, has humiliated you — again. Yet at a press conference last week, you continued to support him, and his candidacy for mayor of New York City. “I love him. I have forgiven him. I believe in him,” you said.
Why would you do this? Speculation by media pundits, New York City voters and average citizens usually follows three themes:
- You want to keep your family together at all costs.
- You believe you can help your husband overcome his problems.
- You are a political animal and will do anything to get your husband elected.
Read: Why does Huma Abedin put up with Weiner?, on CNN.com.
I don’t know you personally, and what I know of your situation comes only from watching you and Weiner in televised interviews and from media reports. But what I see and read is uncomfortably familiar, so I think there is another explanation for your actions.
Anthony Weiner was once a congressman from New York. But in 2011, less than a year into your marriage, he sent a photo of his crotch to his 45,000 Twitter followers. It was a mistake, because he meant to send it to a woman with whom he was having an online affair—while you were pregnant with his child. First he claimed his Twitter account was hacked. He finally had no choice but to admit the truth—it was him. He did it. Weiner resigned in disgrace from Congress on June 16, 2011
Then, he did it again.
Last week, Sydney Leathers, a young woman from Indiana revealed that she had an online affair with Weiner. According to TheDirty.com, Leathers first started talking to him in July 2012 — after he resigned from Congress, after you had forgiven him and after he sought therapy. By August your husband was having regular phone sex with the girl—telling her that he loved her and would buy her a condo in Chicago. By November 2012, the relationship “began to fizzle out.”
Leathers wasn’t the only one. At another press conference last week, Weiner admitted he sexted three women after he resigned from Congress. Why would he behave in a manner that is not only disrespectful to you and your marriage, but downright stupid?
Ms. Abedin, your husband has a problem that won’t be solved by therapy. He has a personality disorder. He is a sociopath.
If you’re like most people, you may think that a sociopath is a serial killer. This is occasionally true, but in reality, most sociopaths never kill anyone.
Sociopaths have enormous egos, inflated self-esteem and an unbelievable sense of entitlement. They are smooth talkers, and prolific liars. They are sexually promiscuous. They are aggressive, impulsive, reckless, and when caught behaving badly, defiant. Does this sound familiar?
Sociopaths blame others for everything, including their own bad behavior. Your husband did, after all, blame his sexting on “a rough time” in your marriage. In other words, it was your fault that he was forced to seek companionship elsewhere. This is, I assure you, typical sociopathic justification.
You are the perfect target
You may think that the people who are exploited by sociopaths get in trouble because they aren’t very smart or suffer from low self-esteem. Again, this is occasionally true. But research by Dr. Liane Leedom shows that women who love sociopaths share three distinctive traits:
1. Extraversion. Extraverted women are competitive, outgoing, action-oriented, curious, ambitious, excitement-seeking and sometimes impulsive. They like men who have the same qualities.
2. Invested in relationships. Personal relationships are very important, and the source of great satisfaction. These women are sentimental and attach deeply to the people they care about.
3. Cooperativeness. Cooperative women are empathetic, tolerant and value getting along with others. They are willing to compromise their own interests for the big picture — including the ambitions of their mates.
Again, I don’t know you personally, but from what I’ve read, I’ll bet that these traits describe you.
Sociopaths are exploiters. They look for people who have something that they want. You certainly had plenty that a man with unbridled political ambition would want. Not only are you smart and beautiful, but as an important assistant to Hillary Clinton, you have access to power. Real power.
Once Anthony Weiner set his sights on you, he probably followed the sociopathic playbook to win you. Typically they engage in love bombing — showering you with attention and affection, wanting to be with you all the time, engaging in over-the-top displays of devotion.
Maureen Dowd reported, “Weiner wooed Huma assiduously, showing up at the Westchester airport in the wee hours to pick her up when she came back from trips with Hillary.”
I imagine that Weiner also painted a glowing picture of your future together, how successful the two of you would be, and all the wonderful things he could do for the public, with you at his side. I heard a similar story from my sociopathic ex-husband.
Here’s one of the most insidious ways in which sociopaths snag you: They find out what your dreams are, and then promise to make them come true. Except they can’t, and eventually it all comes crashing down.
Asking for forgiveness
After the first sexting scandal, I assume your husband put on quite a show of sorrow and remorse. He probably apologized profusely, perhaps with tears rolling down his cheeks. He had some plausible but lame excuse — maybe the fact that you were pregnant. He promised to seek therapy. He swore he would never do it again.
You, being your own woman, were furious. But as a woman invested in relationships, and with a child on the way, you probably felt like the right thing to do was believe that your husband would keep his word and stay in your marriage. You worked through your anger for the good of your family, and for both of your careers.
While my ex-husband was burning through all of my cash and credit pursuing his dreams of entrepreneurial success, I asked myself, “What kind of wife leaves her husband because his business plans aren’t working out?” So perhaps you asked yourself, “What kind of wife leaves her husband because of stupid texts?”
The texts are not the problem, they are a symptom of the problem. The real problem — Anthony Weiner’s personality disorder — cannot be solved.
Trust is gone
I imagine that by now, your trust in Anthony Weiner is gone. As it should be.
I imagine that Anthony Weiner pressured you into appearing at that press conference with him. (By the way, Jim McGreevey did the same thing to his wife, Dina, when he gave his “I am a gay American” speech. McGreevey is not gay. He is also a sociopath.)
I imagine that once again, Anthony Weiner is doing everything he can to make sure you don’t leave him. He is displaying over-the-top love and affection. He is begging your forgiveness. He is promising that with you at his side, he will be elected, and then the two of you will do so much to make life better for the citizens of New York City. He is appealing for your help to overcome his character flaws.
Ms. Abedin, there is no rehabilitation for a sociopath. Your husband will never be honest, forthright, caring and monogamous.
I am so sorry for the embarrassment you have suffered. I hope this information helps you to decide what is best for you to do now.