Her Guy's a Danger at the Wheel

Q: I don't like to drive so I typically let my husband take charge of the wheel when we go out. He's a very impatient driver though and is often aggressive on the road. He's gotten two speeding tickets in the last six months alone. But worse than that, he goes into a verbal rage if someone cuts him off, brakes at a yellow light, etc. I'm worried that eventually we're going to get into an accident, but he's the kind of guy that would say, "If you don't like my driving then drive yourself." What should I do? — Tammy, 39

Dr. Susan: I sympathize with the quandary in which you find yourself. I'm not fond of driving either, and the times (decades ago, thankfully) when my mate would get angry while driving are still sharply etched in my memory. It's very unsettling to think you might be contributing to your own doom (or a total stranger's!) by not taking the wheel. What I'd suggest is a good long, hopefully calm, discussion with your husband about how to handle this. I'm afraid you're probably going to have to do more of the driving (if he's agreeable, and isn't critical of how you drive so that you get nervous about it). If he can't keep calm about normal road situations, then you will have to remain ultra-calm for the both of you. But first, when you're sitting safe at home, let him know you're seriously anxious about his speeding and his angry outbursts. Loving partners need to be willing to make changes in behaviors that any rational person would agree are negative and potentially dangerous.

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