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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10643
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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What might it mean psychologically if my wife has a picture

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What might it mean psychologically if my wife has a picture of herself as a child in her purse and often pulls it out and shows it to people and fishes for them to say how cute she was? I'm just wondering if to her that period of time is when she was truly happy and she hasn't been content since.

DoctorZ :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concern

DoctorZ :

May I ask how old is your wife and when you asked her why she does this, how does she respond?

Customer:

She is 58. I've never asked her about it. It has just seemed odd to me for yrs.

DoctorZ :

It is not an uncommon type of behavior, although usually the pictures are when the individual was a teenager or in their 20's. Most likely your wife is feeling self-conscious over growing older and not looking like she used to. In addition, on the rare occasion some question their own mortality as they get older and seek relief by reliving their past younger selves and showing this picture may be a way for her to do that, but at this point I am leaning more towards being self-conscious

DoctorZ :

She most likely is content with her life right now, but stills feels somewhat self-conscious of getting older, which is common among individuals as they age.

Customer:

That makes sense. Thanks.

DoctorZ :

From what you are describing, this does not seem to be a particular obsessive behavior, as some individuals express, it appears to be a mild "quirk" that is probably harmless and a coping mechanism for your wife. I would not worry too much about it

DoctorZ :

Anytime, I am always happy to help

DoctorZ :

Is there anything else I can assist you with?

Customer:

No. I was just envisioning sexual abuse as a child or other extreme issues. It isn't an obsession. It is just something she does that I'm not accustomed to anyone else doing.

DoctorZ :

Yeah it sounds like harmless behavior most likely connected to possible self-consciousness of aging. I doubt that this behavior is evidence of sexual abuse, you would see other behaviors like depression, anxiety, hyperviglance, possible nightmares, aversion to sex, etc...

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