DEAR ABBY: My husband and I have been married three years. We have a great relationship except for one problem: When "Chad" gets angry, he breaks things and punches holes in the walls. He eventually calms down and regains his composure, leaving broken dishes and cracked plaster.
This upsets my 9-year-old daughter. She was especially scared when Chad picked up our dog and flung him to the ground. She cried and wrote a prayer to God asking him to help her daddy.
I've told Chad he should attend anger control classes, but he says he doesn't need them. When Chad is himself, he adores my kids and they adore him. He is a far better father to my children than their natural father was.
Abby, how can I convince Chad to take the classes? I'm afraid if I push him he will walk out, leaving my kids without another father. -- WANTING PEACE AND QUIET IN OKLAHOMA
DEAR WANTING: You can't "convince" him. Your husband is the one who must realize that for the sake of his family he needs the anger control classes.
I am worried about your children's emotional health. When they see Chad violently throwing their dog to the ground, it's an implicit threat that he could do the same thing to them if they displease him. As a responsible parent, you must protect them from further intimidation. It's important that they feel secure in a safe environment.
Since Chad refuses to get help, I urge you to go to counseling yourself. It will help you to get your priorities in order and give you a more complete understanding of what you must do. Please don't wait.