The Case of Felix Ungar

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Felix Ungar, a 34 year old television news-writer and his wife have just separated after 12 years of marriage. They have two children, a girl 5, and a boy 7. Felix is a loving and caring husband and father. His caring is almost to extreme, he tends to smother those he cares about and he feels that they are his only reason for existence.

Feeling he had nothing to live for Felix attempted to commit suicide on the day his wife threw him out. He checked into a hotel, and asked for a room as high up as possible. When he got to his room, even though he was about to "end it all", he took the time to put his wallet and other valuables in an envelope addressed to "my wife and wonderful children". The only thing he did not put into the envelope was his wedding ring, and that was only because it had been on his finger so long that it was stuck. The suicide attempt failed because the window was jammed shut. No matter how he tugged and pushed, it would not open, his attempt was aborted, and he strained his back in the process.

Felix describes himself as a compulsive cleaner. He cleaned up after his wife had cleaned the house; he even re-cooked meals that his wife had cooked. He says he is a better cook than she is.
He believes he is nothing without his wife and children. He lived, worked, and did everything for his wife and children. Felix needed a reason to exist. He cannot work and live just for himself; he must have someone to do things for. To satisfy this need, he moved in with his best friend, Oscar Madison, who was divorced after 10 years of marriage. Now Felix and Oscar are in the process of driving each other crazy. Their attitudes on cleanliness, punctuality, and personal hygiene are opposite. Felix just can't understand how Oscar can "live in filth", and Oscar just wants to be left to do things as he gets to them, and if he doesn't get to them, they don't get done, and it really doesn't matter.

Felix has numerous health problems, he has bursitis in his shoulder , he is allergic to foods, dust, feathers, most perfume and has a sinus condition that is aggravated by going into air conditioned places.

Felix is always extremely punctual, he doesn't arrive anywhere late and has little tolerance for anyone who is not as punctual as he. If he says he is going to be somewhere or do something at 7:30 he means 7:30 not 7:31, the later someone is for an engagement with Felix, the more upset he gets.

Blames himself for all his problems, claims others close to him are too good to him, and that their attention to him is the reason for all the good things that happen to him.

He exercises extreme control of his thoughts and actions, strives for moral perfection. Will not allow himself to express hostile emotions. He is apologetic when he feels he has fallen short, and numerous times it is not he that has failed, but someone close to him, but he will accept the blame and apologize to the person who has failed, as if it was he that failed. He will not argue, instead he pouts or sulks when in a confrontation with others, and he gets his feelings hurt easily. Other have described him as "sensitive and fragile".

Felix constantly talks of his "wonderful" wife and children, he says that he misses them very much. He drops by to see his children every night after work. He and his wife have agreed that he is to have visitation rights on weekends, every holiday, and he will have the children two months in the summer.

Felix claims he is more concerned with what is going to happen to his wife than he is about himself. After all how will she possibly manage without him to take care of her, and since she has the children to care for how will she possibly find someone else?

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The purpose of this information: This information was first published as an experiment in publishing on the WWW. These pages are case studies of a fictional person. I composed these papers as an assignment for a graduate level Theories of Personality, Counseling Psychology class. I'm not claiming that any of this material is 100% correct. I make no representation as to the usefulness of this material. I hope that these pages are of some use to you, either educational, informative, or at least entertaining. If you have any comments about these pages please contact me by e-mail. Thank you for reading.

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