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Is my marriage doomed?


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(Apologies in advance for the long post)


This is my first time posting – I’m doing so because I just don’t know what to do. I’ve been married for almost a year and together with my wife for almost 3 years in total. Things are not going well but you’ve probably guessed that already… I do love my wife but I don’t know if our relationship can be salvaged.


Things are going terribly. I know that it’s not just one person that causes a relationship to be/go bad but I honestly don’t know what I’m doing wrong. I feel my wife is quite demanding and harsh on me. One time we were shopping and someone thrust a leaflet in my face. I took it as I often do not knowing what it was and it was a debt awareness leaflet. I looked at it even though I am not in debt as I am interested in what people say to other people. She got angry and said I embarrassed her by looking at it in public.


Things were fine for the first 9 months then I moved in with her – she asked me to just after we got engaged and was lovely at this time. I relocated for her as she didn’t want to live where I did, even though it would have been less disruptive to her to move in with me, as I was more social/active in my old area than she is in hers. She couldn’t cope with me being a bit messy and started to go on at me. I (perhaps foolishly) put this down as us adjusting to living with each other, as she did. Then things were ok for a good while until our wedding approached. She did 95% of the organising and I just gave her money when she needed it as I knew she wanted it to be perfect. I’m not particularly well off but I gave her money for this and didn’t quibble about amounts as I knew how important it was to her.


She got really stressed about organising it and I asked if I could help. She said I couldn’t as I wouldn’t do it right. I knew what she meant – she knew what she wanted and I didn’t. Then one day a few months before the wedding my parents came round for lunch. I told her to be ready for 1 and she wasn’t ready 10 minutes before this so I asked her if she was ok. She thought they were coming at 1.30 and went ballistic at me and said I told her the wrong time etc. we started arguing a bit and then at one point she spat in my face. I was in shock but we had to go to lunch to keep appearances up as my parents arrived 5 mins after this.


I went over and over this and, because I loved her coupled with the fact that she had been ditched once before a short time before her wedding, I decided I couldn’t call off the wedding. We got married and she was great for 2 days then things have deteriorated rapidly since then. We went on honeymoon and she didn’t like the first hotel (even though she picked it). She complained about not being able to get food she liked. We then moved to another part of the country we were visiting and had to fly. She went nuts at me for holding up a queue when she had asked me to find something in her bag (I had to stop in a moving queue to do so). We had an argument 3 days into our honeymoon.


We then got to the next hotel (which she chose) and it wasn’t like the pictures made it out to be. It was a bit dirty etc. she just said she was going home the next day and I could come with her or not but she was definitely going.


We came back and a few days later I was admitted to hospital with a heart attack (unrelated to any of the above). She was very upset and was great during the 10 days I was in hospital.


However, when I came out I remember her complaining that we couldn’t go to the cinema as I was unable to drive for 4 weeks and she would miss a film she wanted to see. I said we could go on the bus but she dismissed this idea rather quickly. I couldn’t believe this when I heard it.


She then started to say that she couldn’t cope with the flat we lived in as it was too small and we needed to move to a bigger house or our relationship wouldn’t survive. I told her I wasn’t sure if I wanted to buy a house in her town (I am a saver and she is a spender so I had money for a deposit – basically all of my savings). She said I had done something terrible and duped her by leading her on by moving to her town and then saying I didn’t want to live there. We were renting so it was flexible at that time.


She had her heart set on a house and we decided to go for it. I loved her and thought I could cope with staying in her small town. She has complained so much since then about how she doesn’t have enough money to do up the house to her standard. Basically there is always something which she is not happy about. I have saved a bit of money again but I don’t want to spend it on doing up the house when I paid the entire down payment for the house as I would have nothing in the bank for a rainy day, and I need that security.


I am not keen to spend loads on home renovation and she is. She grew up in a broken home and now she says that her main aim is to have a nice house and so it fixated on this. She wants to spend almost half the value of the house on it in renovating it. As things stand she is taking loans to pay for it. She says we are basically doomed as we don’t want the same things. We have gone to counselling already but it didn’t really help.


It just seems that I do what she asks but she is never happy. My contribution to our bad relationship is negativity (as I feel so down a lot of the time that my wife thinks so lowly of me – she constantly criticises me and says I have done her a disservice by marrying her when we don’t want the same things) as I can’t snap out of it sometimes. I get angry on the road as I commute further now than I did and it’s always busy and we run late as she always gets up late because she says she can’t cope with her life as work is too stressful and home is too stressful. I said I would do more chores but she doesn’t trust me to do then right so doesn’t let me do them. I feel so angry too now and again as I constantly can’t do anything right and so I end up raising my voice when we are arguing. My doctor has said he will give me anti-depressants and so I am going to go back this week to get them as I don’t know how much longer I can cope for. I stand firm on some things as I don’t want to be walked over but this seems to cause more problems e.g. not volunteering more money for renovation when I have spent thousands just months ago to get the house that she wanted (I wouldn’t have bought this one). I’ve changed jobs since the heart attack as I hated my old job and I am a lot happier in my new one, even though I had to take a reasonable salary cut. If I was still in my old job, I think I’d be heavily medicated by now.


I’m trying as best as I can but I feel I’m in a no win situation.


This is the brief version, I promise you. I’ve missed out loads as there is too much to write. The thing is we get on great a lot of the time and have such a good laugh together. I've never met anyone who can make me laugh like this. She is also generous with money and has other good qualities. So I'm caught in two minds.


Is my marriage salvageable?


Thanks in advance.

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It sounds as though your marriage is in a lot of trouble. When I read that she actually spat in your face, it made me a bit worried. To spit in someone's face is very belittling. You can't give her happiness because she seems to be a very unhappy person. Did you try to explain your feelings toward the entire situation? Maybe try to go to a different marriage counselor? I'm thinking that individual therapy along with a couples therapy might be a bit helpful. The only way this marriage can be saved is if both of you are willing to work on it and not just you by yourself.


Best of luck

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It sounds like you keep making excuses for her bad behavior. She's an adult, well in age, but she isn't held accountable for her bad behaviors because you accept them.


It sounds like she needs counseling for all of the problems she went through growing up. You shouldn't be a target for her bad behavior.


She sounds unhappy, and it's not your job to make her happy.


See if she's willing to talk with somebody, if not, run fast.

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You are being too passive. You need to stand up to her. Her behavior is emotionally abusive. Tell her she either gets counselling or you want a divorce as being with her is making you depressed and your health is suffering.


Tell her she is abusive and things need to change

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Then one day a few months before the wedding my parents came round for lunch. I told her to be ready for 1 and she wasn’t ready 10 minutes before this so I asked her if she was ok. She thought they were coming at 1.30 and went ballistic at me and said I told her the wrong time etc. we started arguing a bit and then at one point she spat in my face.


I would have been GONE at that point. There is nothing so utterly disrespectful and demeaning as this. For me, this is an absolute, it's broken, cannot be repaired, ever. That bridge is burnt to less than cinders and since you want to play nasty, I'll pull the gloves off and teach you about what that means.


Honestly, I think you need to get out while you still can. She was upset because you couldn't drive her to the cinema for 4 weeks after a major health crisis? That is the most incredibly selfish thing I have ever heard and it speaks volumes about how much she cares about you. This woman dies not respect or care for you, nor do I think she even likes you. If fact, I would say that she despises you. You said repeatedly how you can never do anything right. If that's how it is now, it's not going to get any better. The amount of day to day stress you're under because of her attitude is not helping you. You've already had one heart attack and stress like this could be setting you up for another one. Yes, I am saying it, this relationship could kill you. Please call an attorney and see what you can do about getting away from her.

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You said, “Is my marriage salvageable?

- Wrong question, instead am I in a non-marriage?


How did you meet?

How many dates did you go on before sex and meeting the family?

Is this your first serious relationship?

Thinking back to before you proposed, could you now say your backgrounds were compatible?

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What your wife does is a desperate attempt to control every aspect of her life because she had zero control as a child. My mother suffers from the same problem and unfortunately she still has not surrendered her fears five husbands later. I don't know that I could get past being spit on...that would be a deal breaker for me.

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