Open letter to Huma Abedin: You’re married to a sociopath

Huma Abedin

Huma Abedin photographed for Vogue in 2007

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:

  1. You want to keep your family together at all costs.
  2. You believe you can help your husband overcome his problems.
  3. 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.

Your humiliation

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.

Sociopathic behavior

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.

The seduction

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.


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64 Comments on "Open letter to Huma Abedin: You’re married to a sociopath"

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I agree that he crossed the line of professional ethics in going out on a date with a patient. Way over the line. Doctors do not go out with current patients, period.

Why is behaving so strangely? He’s an assclown, that’s what’s up.

Professionals do it all the time, and always have. Golfing, tennis, any sports or sporting event, drinks, free meals or to have meals not eaten alone. It’s how further business is generated or future recommendations are made. He was simply doing what professionals have done forever. The only thing that changed over time is that there is a greater mixing of the sexes on both sides.

It’s very possible he didn’t see it as a date, just business.

Doctors are taught in med school not to cross professional boundaries. They don’t “connect” with current patients and invite them to their homes to divulge intimate details about their lives, etc. It just isn’t done for the very reason we see here. Our shelby is confused by the doctor and her relationship with him because the lines have been badly blurred, and he certainly isn’t clarifying just what the relationship is. Personally, I’ve never known a doctor who behaves in such a shady way. They’re usually strong, take charge characters and there is no ambiguity about just where you stand with them.

The fact that he refuses to clarify the status of their relationship, if for no other reason than to protect himself from a complaint, is a pretty strong indication to me that he did knowingly cross the line into romance/intimate relationship. If he felt that shelby had mistakenly formed a romantic attachment to him, don’t you think he would act, i.e. terminate the doctor/patient relationship and send her to a different doctor?

No, IMO, there’s much more to it than shelby mistakenly forming an attachment to him.

This is on him, not shelby. He’s the professional, and he’s the one who allowed the lines to be blurred.

onmyown: Whew…………thank you. He told me he had a moral compass and that he was sensitive. I figured that he would be able to discern, to me, that should we continue that we would separate professionally. I believed him.

After breaking up with a true s-path, this was so refreshing to hear his modis-operandi. But, his behavior has not reflected anything of the sort.

You didn’t do anything wrong. This is all of his own making.

He’s either second-guessed the lack of ethics and is afraid of your reaction, or he’s one of those assclowns that runs hot and cold, never truly engaging or disengaging, and keeps women on the hook indefinitely while they wait for something, anything to happen. These types are never honest in their feelings or their dealings with women. Either way, it doesn’t have a thing to do with you as a woman or as a prospective partner.

Throw this one back in the pond and call it a day. He’s not a keeper.

onmyown: Thank you. Your insight is most welcomed. I wish I had the talent to understand human nature, but my benchmark is skewed. I thought I was being strong, but as usual, am off the mark.

The signals were clear from him and I acted on them. Now, it is totally the opposite.

Anyway, time to move on. Thank you again for taking the time to advise me.

It’s easy when you’re on the outside looking in to make assessments about relationships. Not so easy when you’re in the middle of confusing behavior. Don’t be hard on yourself – you already had the gut feeling that something was very wrong and his actions didn’t match the words he used. That’s excellent. I think the hard part is learning when to try to work it out and when to walk away. You tried to work it out. You did your part.

Just keep reminding yourself that normal, well-adjusted people are NOT this complicated.

What I have not explained is that he invited me to his home. He told me things that he has not told anyone. Granted – I can see that he may have some reservations about this, I am not the type to gossip. He told me these things because he trusted me.

But the fact that I did reach out to him, twice this week, to clarify this relationship, whether it be strictly professional or otherwise, he refused to divulge his intentions or feelings.

Instead, he chose to disengage, disassociate and make me feel like pond-scum.

This is what I don’t understand.

A professional’s relationship with a client/patient is a very intimate one, not in the sexual definition.

Doctor’s are people first. I have been in my/ my family’s doctor’s homes since the 60’s. I have been told, by both male and female doctors anhd other medical professionals, about their marriages, divorces, children and their always not so nice antics, dates, purchases of cars and homes, academic weaknesses and lousy relatives.

Some people want more than a professional relationship with the people they hire/go to, some don’t. I, personally, would not be comfortable with a professional that wasn’t a person first.

The latespath, was an Ivy League lawyer, he never had the ability to ‘be a person’ with clients. He alienated many long term clients of 2 firms, no matter how well he spoke and how knowledgeable he was But then again sociopaths are not real life people.

Hi Shelby,

What you’ve said about this doctor does put a different complexion on the matter. I’m hearing that he himself has been making overtures to you—then suddenly chose to pull back for reasons that aren’t clear. That’s understandably very confusing.

What alternatives are we left with? It’s possible that he was tempted at first to pursue a romance with you, but then thought better of it, whether for professional or for any other reason. So he chose to “cool it.” But if that’s the case, why would he have to be so rude about it? Even if he’d changed his mind for a purely personal reason, the doctor-patient relationship could still serve as a polite excuse for not taking things any further. Why couldn’t he just apologize and say “I don’t think it’s a good idea for us to do this while you’re my patient”?

A second possibility is that something happened on your date that he interpreted as a “rejection” from you, and reacted by getting all huffy about it. But that seems unlikely. Surely you would have noticed some unexplained change in his demeanor on the date itself.

In any case I’d be suspicious of this doctor’s ethics if he was making romantic overtures to you while you were his patient. And if other alternatives are ruled out, I’m forced to the conclusion that “onmyown” is right: this doctor has been playing games with you.

“Onmyown” called him an “assclown,” and I guess that’s one word for it! However, I hope it will help to add some more explanation. If this guy is indeed playing games with you, it’s entirely understandable that you’d feel confused and wondering what, if anything, you must have “done wrong” to “make” him react that way, as if you’d somehow “offended” him. The answer, as “onmyown” pointed out, is nothing! You haven’t done anything wrong at all. This is all about him!

The reason this has to be so confusing to anyone in your position is that it’s so hard to see what other motive he could possibly have for acting the way he did, for being so cold and distant. Even when someone is a psychopath (or “sociopath”) with no conscience, we still expect them to act out of motives that we ourselves can understand—whether that’s greed (swindling someone out of their money), lust (maneuvering someone into bed), jealousy (acts of spite and revenge) or some other motive that “makes sense” to us. Since you like this guy so much and have always been nice to him, anyone has to be asking themselves why on earth he would choose to be so cold and hostile toward you. Why would he return evil for good? Does it make any sense at all? If it doesn’t, if there seems to be no explanation, anyone in your position is stuck wondering “What could I have done wrong to cause this?”

But the fact is, you didn’t do anything “wrong.” And some people, perhaps like this doctor, do have motives that “make no sense” to us.

For one thing, some people, whether they’re psychopathic or not, have “triggers” from their past that arouse angry, fearful, or otherwise hostile feelings in them. If we happen to accidentally remind them of someone who habitually abused them long ago, especially in childhood, they may start feeling irrationally angry or hostile toward us for something that wasn’t our fault. That’s something we have no way of knowing about. A rational person may recognize their own triggers and realize when they’re reacting unfairly toward someone who unwittingly triggered them. But other people may just “act out” their hostile feelings toward someone who triggered them, while the luckless target is left wondering “what on earth did I do to cause that?”

However, you’re dealing with a specific scenario where, as far as anyone can tell, this doctor seems to have started by engaging in some mutually gratifying flirtation, luring you on—then unaccountably turned around and rejected you. And he never even got you into bed!—even though he might have done. What on earth could he be “getting out” of all this?

One man who answered that question half a century ago was Eric Berne. Though he never talked about psychopaths or sociopaths as such, Berne, in his 1964 classic Games People Play, discussed many of the interactions some people engage in for sick, pathological motives, which he called “games.” One game in particular he described under the title of “Rapo.” The game consists of encouraging a would-be admirer, then slapping them with an unexpected rejection. That sounds like precisely what this doctor did to you.

Berne called the game “Rapo” because he described it chiefly as it was played by females, who have natural sexual power over men. However, he made it clear that males were equally capable of playing the same game, and significantly, the male examples he described were played by men in positions of power. He called those variants “Casting Couch” (where a movie producer screws the starlet but doesn’t give her the part she was angling for) and “Cuddle Up” (where a boss seduces his secretary and then fires her). It wouldn’t be surprising to find a doctor, also in a position of power, playing the same game with a patient.

It’s easy to see how in those examples anyone might mistake the “player’s” only motive for a sexual one—to get the woman into bed—and he just doesn’t care what happens to her afterwards. But Berne made it clear that if the game of “Rapo” does reward the player with sexual gratification, that’s incidental to the main motive, which is something else entirely.

Berne described “first degree,” “second degree,” and “third degree” forms of “Rapo,” though the “third degree” form need not concern us here. In the “first degree” form, the player initiates a flirtation, but when the target confirms that he (or she) is interested, the player “cuts it off.” In “first degree Rapo,” the player may do this politely, because his or her motive was chiefly to “make a conquest” and obtain the ego gratification that brings with it. The player never has any intention of pursuing a real relationship with the target.

It’s when we move to “second degree Rapo” that things get nastier. As Berne explained, typically the player here leads the target into a “much more serious commitment than the mild flirtation of First Degree ‘Rapo’ and enjoys watching his [or her] discomfiture when she [or he] repulses” the target. Berne pointed out explicitly that in “second degree Rapo,” any satisfaction the player derives from being admired by the target is secondary to the main aim of the game: the gratification the player gets from rejecting the target. In his analysis of the game, Berne stated its main aim as “malicious revenge.”

Why should anyone like yourself be the target of “malicious revenge”? I’m sure you never deserved any such thing! One possible answer is that you happened to be a convenient target—a “tin can to kick,” so to speak—when this doctor was quietly venting his rage against the world, or against the opposite sex. Who knows why he acted the way he did? Maybe his mother abused him in childhood, and he’s been revenging himself on the entire female sex ever since.

If he is a psychopath, with a typical psychopath’s “charm,” even that is not the only possible explanation. He could be just literally “playing” with you. I mean in the sense that we “play” with objects around us, just to see what they will do. Psychopaths, having no “feelings” for people in the way that the rest of us have, do treat people as “objects,” often “playing” with people in the same way that the rest of us play with “things.” A good parallel is the classic example of a small boy pulling the wings off a fly. He’s not necessarily doing that “to be cruel,” only to see how the fly will behave when “reconfigured.” There doesn’t have to be any malice in the act. To the player, the fly is merely an “object,” and pulling the wings off is no different from pulling a wheel off a toy truck to see how it runs on three wheels instead of four. Many psychopaths “play” with people in just the same way. What they do to people is cruel and hurtful, yet there isn’t always malice in their behavior. Doing things to people and watching them react is just their sick way of “entertaining” themselves.

Whatever his motives, I imagine you’d be best to steer clear of this doctor, both professionally and personally.

Thanks for the excellent interpretive summary Redwald!

“Rapo” seems the equivalent of a “What-the-fuck moment”. Any WTF moment at all, is a personal alert that tells me I must immediately flee and have no further contact with that person. That books sounds interesting. Thank you for mentioning it! S

Not only can Huma not depend on Weiner as a human, she can no longer count on his skills as a politician. She can no longer use his political savvy as an excuse to stand by him. The mask slips and eventually spaths lose their human skills and lash out.

At an AARP-Univision mayoral forum this morning, mayoral contender Anthony Weiner pulled out the age card to taunt his most vocal challengers, 69-year-old Doe Fund founder George McDonald. Weiner is 48.

Before the debate, Weiner put a hand on McDonald’s back and said hello, prompting McDonald to reply: “I would appreciate if you would never touch me again.”

Weiner retorted: “What are you going to do about it, grandpa?” according to two sources.

The feud between the two has been simmering since last week.

At a debate in Laurelton, Queens on Thursday, McDonald called Weiner a “self-pleasuring freak.” He said he was embarrassed to tell his 10-year-old granddaughter why Weiner was famous. Weiner replied then by calling McDonald a candidate “chirping at the fringes,” which only fanned the flame of the GOP candidate’s temper.

But Weiner’s remarks today are sure to hurt him with older voters ”“ votes he has been courting by campaigning at numerous senior centers.


The day before Thanksgiving, she stood me up – sent me a text message that her overnight from the night before wanted

another 24 hours! I could not begrudge her that – it translated into a significant chunk of cash for her. But I was

hurt – and she knew – and she called me on Thanksgiving Day which she was spending with relatives a hundred miles

upstate and said “Come into Manhattan tomorrow – I am taking a train down to the city.” And we had an indescribable


She was here again in mid-December – another strange afternoon, and now we find ourselves making plans for ….. No,

I can’t get into that yet, not even with you, Jack. Suffice it to say that we may be spending time soon in a place

other than hotels. And the feelings of affection that she and I have had for a long time do seem to be changing into

some much, much deeper – on both sides of the equation. Like I said – maybe frightened is the word.

Anthony Weiner Gets Into It With George McDonald, Calling Him “Grandpa”
Tensions boiled over between Anthony Weiner and the rival who has been most critical of his sexting scandal, Republican George McDonald, as the two got in a heated confrontation before a candidates forum Tuesday morning.
The dustup culminated in Weiner calling his 69-year-old opponent “grandpa” – at a forum on senior issues hosted by the AARP.

McDonald got angry after Weiner approached to greet him and touched his chest. “I said keep you hands to yourself. Don’t put your hands on me ever again,” McDonald said in the confrontation caught on camera by New York 1.

“What’s going to happen if I do?” Weiner taunted in response. “You have anger issues.”

“I don’t have any anger issues,” the Republican replied.

“Yes you do, grandpa,” snapped Weiner.

The pair have had bad blood since at least last week, when McDonald called Weiner a “self-pleasuring freak” at a Queens forum.

It wasn’t the only drama to take place before the debate even started – Green Party candidate Tony Gronowicz was dragged out by cops after showing up uninvited and refusing to leave. “I’m the bona fide Green Party candidate,” he insisted. “I’m on the ballot.”

McDonald did not let up on Weiner during the debate, slamming him as a “glib narcissist” who “is only interested in himself” – and getting booed by the crowd.

“I would contrast my values with Anthony Weiner’s values any day of the week,” McDonald said, before being drowned out by boos. “OK, you don’t want to allow me to talk – that’s just more time for this glib narcissist.”

He later went on the attack again, pleading, “I ask you for just 30 seconds without booing me.”

“Believe me, it’s not nice to talk about. I didn’t have a nice conversation with my ten-year-old granddaughter about why one person is so much more famous that you, grandpa. What did he do? Why don’t you do what he did?” he said.

“Why do you want to ignore a person’s character and judgment?” he told the hostile crowd. “Believe me, you’ll be very disappointed if this person gets elected mayor. He doesn’t have any executive experience, never has anybody that works for him longer than three weeks, is only interested in himself and not your best interest, that’s for sure.”

Weiner did not hit back at McDonald’s broadsides during the debate, but did whack the Republican candidates as a group, after they all said they supported immigration reform.

“It is fascinating to listen to my friends here in the Republican party talk about immigration reform. It’s their party, it’s their candidates that are standing in the way of us having reform. It’s the Republicans that are demonizing people who came from other places,” he said.

Meanwhile, Weiner claimed to have Mayor Bloomberg’s vote in the bag.

“I think that the mayor, were he a Democrat, would vote for me in the primary, and I expect him to vote for me in the general,” he said in responding to Bloomberg’s speech on the budget – boasting that he’d get Bloomberg’s vote because he’s the only candidate with a plan to control healthcare costs.

Bloomberg has tried his best to avoid commenting on Weiner’s run, but referred to his behavior as “reprehensible” without naming him Friday.

Weiner, after presenting a proposal to reduce alternate side parking, also claimed he enjoys it when voters heckle and curse him out, as they did at a campaign stop in Brooklyn Monday night.

“I go to these subway stations because I kind of want to hear what people have to say. If they want to yell, if they want to ask me questions, if they want to yell at each other, I like that stuff,” he said. “I’m cool with that.”

He also insisted that despite his foibles he would not lack the moral authority to tell New Yorkers what to do or discipline misbehaving city employees – saying that authority comes from winning an election.

“That’s where you get the authority to govern from. It’s up to the voters to make that decision,” he said.

Update: AARP spokesman David Irwin said of Weiner’s “grandpa” comment, “It’s unfortunate, and AARP doesn’t think that age should ever be a factor when someone’s running for political office.”

Oh gee…let’s all vote for jerks and creeps now.

The jerks and creeps aren’t doing well. The candidates leading the latest polling are Joseph
Lhota (R) and Christine Quinn (D), both relatively non-scandalous (and non-sexting) individuals. 😉

Unfortunately, most of the world has no concept that folks with disordered moral reasoning have no moral compass. They have the expectation that they can be immoral in their private lives, but moral in their public lives, as if they are two distinctly different people. It’s totally amusing when you think of it, except that lack of awareness puts immoral people into public offices.

And although Weiner is not doing well in the pols, thank goodness, we can’t say the same for Elliot Spitzer, our disgraced past Governor who resigned over his sex scandal and is now running for Comptroller of the City of New York. In the opinion of many New Yorkers, we should put someone who can’t keep his pecker in his pants, and could easily do something stupid enough to get himself blackmailed, into a position of trust where he watches over the entire fiscal input and outlay of the City?

I’m hoping my book, Carnal Abusive Deceit, When a Predator’s Lies Become Rape, will shed some light on the reality of the psychopathic mindset. I’ve placed it on http://www.indiegogo.com to raise some funds to promote it. If you’d like to support the publication please log on and enter “Carnal Abusive Deceit” as the keyword.


This letter is dead-on. And one more thing: she now has a child with this sociopath, so is now more vulnerable to him. S-paths use their children as leverage to keep control over their victims. I am thankful she has powerful friends–maybe this will be a situation where the s-path miscalculated his victim’s vulnerability.

Not only is she in a vulnerable place where he could manipulate her through the child, but the child may be at risk for a pre-disposition to Weiner’s disordered moral reasoning.

Modern neuroscience has made the connection between high levels of testosterone and low levels of oxytocin affecting one’s moral development. An individual’s brain chemistry is genetically based.


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