replied 8 years ago.
Hi again, Scott, and thanks for your reply with helpful, additional information.
A large part of the present issue is most likely due to your wife's depression, hormone problems, physical pain from the fibromyalgia, and the medications she's taking for these conditions. These types of medications can play havoc with emotions and even though the goal of an anti-depressant is to help a person feel better and more optimistic, there's also a chance that the medications she's taking are interacting with each other, so it would be a good idea to double check with her doctors and your pharmacist, regarding any adverse interactions from this combination of medications. Sometimes there can be adverse interactions, and sometimes one medication will render another one less effective.
I fully understand your frustration with this situation and not seeing it progress to where you think it should be, and want it to be.
Your wife's drinking is another issue that is clouding her true feelings and causing her to act out when she feels angry or frustrated with you and/or the situation; in addition, she shouldn't drink alcohol at all, while she's taking various medications. Also, while I don't doubt that what you describe is difficult to endure on a steady basis, keep in mind that you mentioned your ex-wive had/has problems with drinking and anger, and your current wife is exhibiting similar problems, so I'm sure this is even more troubling for, you due to your past experience; but, we learn from our experiences how to better handle them the next time, so you have that advantage.
Being a successful hairstylist, your wife is very creative, and 'artistic' personalities are usually very emotional, so it probably doesn't take much to set her off.
There ARE several facets that need work in your marriage, and I admire your commitment and desire to work toward fixing them. The Marriage Retreat sounded like a fantastic experience and even if you're not super-religious, being guided by your Christian values to honor the vows you both took, is great. You have a very positive outlook and attitude, and that is so important.
I'm sure what you mentioned re: not being able to have children with your wife, is taking a toll and causing more friction between you, and I don't doubt that she feels badly that you were already able to have children with your previous wife, and she feels inadequate that she can't give you children, now. However, you both ARE blessed, to have a strong family unit with your two children, and if they like her and your daughter calls her mommy, you're very fortunate. There are many cases like this, where the children resent their step-mother and this causes a multitude of problems in the marriage.
The age difference can be a problem or a 'positive', depending upon the people. You obviously found your wife attractive and fun, and mature enough, at the age you met her, to feel confident you wanted to spend the rest of your life with her, so that's a 'plus' for both of you.
There's no doubt that you are giving your marriage your best effort, and I feel that your wife might be on more of an even keel, all the time, with proper management of her medications and continuing sessions with a therapist. She should go alone to the therapy sessions, at first, and then you can have some joint sessions, as directed by the therapist. Confronting/talking out the issues causing difficulties, and being given 'homework' each time, to work on at home, will be beneficial.
Try to control your reactions to your wife, when you feel she's acting irrational and blaming you for something, needlessly. This won't be easy, but it should help to diffuse the emotional situations more quickly, than just screaming back and forth, and definitely think before you speak and as upset as you are, don't call her names. This will only serve to inflame the situation. In the heat of the moment, take a deep breath, count to ten, and try to be more calm when speaking to her.
Take time alone, away from the house and the children, to enjoy yourselves, have fun, perhaps spend a couple of days at a nearby hotel, where you can rekindle your romance and only concentrate on each other, with no distractions.
Write each other little love notes to tuck into pockets, briefcase, purse, on your pillows, to remind yourselves of how you once felt about each other and how you'd like to get to that point again. If she knows that you still care and want her to get better and enjoy your relationship more, she'll really feel good about this, and so will you.
Try your very best to salvage what you have already known to be a good relationship, by changing the rules a little bit, to fit the present situation, and you might be able to save your marriage.
On the other hand, if you come to a point where you feel you've already done everything you can, and neither of you are happy, you'll have to take it from there, because you both deserve to be happy. Sometimes circumstances out of our control force us to make difficult decisions, so you'll have to know you tried your best and then do what you feel will benefit you both, the most.
I do wish you much good luck and please let me know if you would like to discuss this further.
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