DEAR ABBY: I'm engaged to someone I love very much. I am 36 and he is 44. We get along great, but he's in a rush to get married. It will be my first and his second. We got engaged three months ago, and he wants the wedding to be in February. The date he picked is his father's birthday.
My other problem is, he is always pawing at me. He always needs to be touching me or calling me his "beautiful angel." It's good to hear that once in a while, but not five times a day.
I love being with him, but sometimes I need my own space. If I say no, he gets defensive and worried that I'm going to leave him. We spend practically every waking (and non-waking) moment together. I am almost at a breaking point. Help! -- OVERWHELMED IN PENNSYLVANIA
DEAR OVERWHELMED: I hope you realize that the behavior you are describing is not an indication of love, but of extreme insecurity. His need to constantly touch you, his defensiveness if you say you need some space, and his fear that you will leave him won't change if you marry him. I am also concerned about the way your wedding date was chosen, because the decision wasn't arrived at mutually.
Ask yourself this: If he makes what should be joint decisions, and you have no space for yourself because of his insecurity, is this the way you want to spend a lifetime? These could be symptoms of an abuser.