DEAR HARRIETTE: My boyfriend comes from an abusive background. He has experienced a lot of terrible things, such as sexual, physical and mental abuse. I can tell he is still heavily affected by his childhood trauma because he can go from zero to 100 real quick. He is a very logical and sweet person, but sometimes those bursts of anger consume him. Although he is seeking some therapy, sometimes I am concerned whether that anger and aggression will ever become directed toward me. I do not think that he would ever hurt me, but I am also a realist and understand that anything can happen. Should I be more concerned about this? What are ways that I can help him? Do you think I should try to talk to him about seeking more therapy? -- Concerned
DEAR CONCERNED: I am sorry to hear that your boyfriend has had so much hardship in his life. It is good that he is seeking help. You may want to ask him if he would be willing to go to therapy with you as well. Explain that you care deeply for him and want to learn to be the best that you can be in a relationship with him. A couples therapist may be able to provide the two of you with tools that will help you manage disagreements, anger and aggression. If you have the courage to talk about your concerns in front of him with a professional, you may gain insight into how to best manage the situation and grow as a couple. Go for it.