Always Mean & Angry

simpleloveJanuary 8, 2009

As I type my wife is in there tearing a hole in my daughter,second time two days and our dogs are hiding under my feet again. The problem is that she does not have a life and she sees fighting as a sport. She will start a fight with anyone that gets near her. She spends all day playing solitaire on the computer and then lashes out at the first person to get near her. She wonders why no one will come and sit with her and have a conversation. We all fear her and the hour of agony she will put us through. I want to help her but I don't know where to start. She does not get along with her friends, family, neighbors or co-workers at a small part-time job. I fear the kids will leave at the first chance they get and I will be left as the lone whipping post.

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Your wife has health and/or mental problems. Get her evaluated by a good doctor.

Her hormones could be out of whack.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 9:20PM
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I have wondered about this for years. She will not go near a counselor and believes all doctors are evil. She is sure and can justify that everyone else in the world has "the problem". Her mother is the same way and has no friends or close family and she hates this about her mother but does not see the same thing in herself. I will try to come up with a good way to get her to a doc.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 10:18PM
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Sir, your wife is nuts. Get her to a Doctor by some means. Force the issue if she won't go volutarily. Ask for authoritative help. Go to court. Get her committed for an evaluation. There is no "good" way to accomplish this. Just do it.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 10:40PM
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sorry but i have to say are worried about being her whipping post when the kids leave. you think it's ok for them to be her whipping post but not you. i think you deserve her but the kids don't. GET THEM OUT OF THERE NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 11:02PM
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So what you'd do to make her so pissed off?

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 11:46PM
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Come on now...I'm only kidding. Some people thrive on confrontation. It may not only be a mental problem, but could a physical one. She needs to talk to someone, anyone... And, you really need to insist she do something for the sake of your children. Good luck..

    Bookmark   January 8, 2009 at 11:50PM
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Stargazzer you are correct but most of the time I throw myself on the bomb to get the kids out of there. I am very protective of the children and I will often step in and take the heat and they know that.

Carla, I don't know and wish I had some idea. I have tried everthing to change the situation. Trips, but we only end up in huge fights in new places. Dinner out but it always ends in a blow up or something does not meet her expectations. I do love my wife I just would love to see her with a smile humming a tune. Whever we go she upsets staff and is always dissapointed. Peaople are afraid to get on the phone with her and the neighbors cringe when the see her coming. It reminds me of the old phrase "Some people make people happy wherever they go and some people make people happy whenever the go".

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 12:00AM
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Could be as simple as depression. She needs to go for a physical. Just telling the doctor she is mean, angry and feels like fighting all the time will be enough to get her on zoloft of prozac or something. Its really not that big of a deal.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 12:08AM
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"I fear the kids will leave at the first chance they get and I will be left as the lone whipping post." -- What a horrible prospect! You (actually she) needs help fast.

I have known someone like your wife; it sounds as though she may have borderline personality disorder, which can make everyone around the person miserable, (not to mention the fact that the person herself is miserable, only she may think it's everyone else's fault). You might get something out of reading the book Stop Walking on Eggshells by Paul T. Mason and Randi Kreger. There are forums online that deal with it, too.

I wish you the best.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 12:12AM
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My mother was like that. A rage-aholic. My two siblings and I grew up to be codependents because we learned to always try to appease her and walk on eggs. We are all middle aged now and have racked up numerous divorces, career and parenting problems. My sister is anorexic and has a host of mental/emotional problems, as we all do, to one extent or another. We did not become the people we could have been. We did not raise our kids the way we could have. They will not raise our grandkids the way they should.

I have often wondered why my dad didn't just make a stand for us and for himself. His "love" for her enabled her to continue her destruction of our family, which now continues into the next generation. Do you hear me?

Anger amd "meaness" is emotional abuse. Protect your kids! They need you, because there is nobody else to do it. You must step up. This is your responsibility as a man and as their father.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 12:50AM
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You need to tell your wife, "Your rage is killing our relationship and our children's souls. If you will not get help we will have to leave for all our sakes." And follow through. This is not right.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 1:45AM
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Couldn't agree with colleenoz more. What your wife is doing is hurting those children. It is up to you to protect them. Give her the ultimatum that she gets help for her rages or you and the kids will leave and then she can be alone with her rage. Don't let one more day pass were she is hurting your children. NancyLouise

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 7:57AM
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you need to step in EVERY TIME.

i'm not sure this post is real, it's to stupid to be real. i think someone is yanking our chain.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 9:39AM
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I imagine that people like this don't think that they are as "bad" as they are to be around. I imagine that they are able to down play their behavior, or justify it, or they don't see it (or experience it) the same way that those around them do.

I remember seeing a radio host (on television) who was always shouting at his wife and children. They wired up the home to video how he interacted with his wife and kids (for the television show). The camera zoomed in on his child's face as he was screaming at his son during dinner. You could see the hurt in the child's eyes. The radio host was actually shocked to see himself in action, and never thought he was "that bad". He actually had tears in his eyes when he watched himself shouting at his little boy. I also saw a program once where the police said their most effective tool in helping the homeless drug/alcohol addict's was a video camera. When they video taped them while they were drunk or high, these people were shocked at what they saw they had become, and then they were willing to go for help. Without the video, they really didn't think they were that bad.

I heard someone on the radio once say that people are at their most creative and brilliant place when they are justifying themselves when they do something wrong.

You say you love your wife. Loving her means trying to help her without hurting her. If you decide to video tape her in action, it means never-ever showing that tape to friends or relatives! But using it to show her who she has become, and helping her find someone who can help her change, into a person you can all love, and be proud of. Perhaps ahead of time you can talk with an anger-management specialist, or a psychiatrist (who can prescribe medication) as counselors and psychologists cannot prescribe medication for depression, or personality disorders. I wonder if this specialist would want to be there with your wife if you decide to video tape her in action, and assure your wife that they can help her change her behavior and how she feels about who she has become.

I know someone who "was" always unhappy or disappointed with everything. When out to eat, she "always" complained about the food. She never liked anything. She was often "mad" and was easily offended. She rarely smiled. She finally hit a crisis point and ended up on medication for depression. This was like 5 years ago. Now she laughs easily, and her whole personality changed for the better, and she is far happier and positive.

Do not sit back passively doing nothing, allowing her to behave like this throughout their childhood. You need to take action to help this woman you love, and help your children, by helping their mom get help. This is not healthy for anyone.

And last, everyone knows that being on the computer for long periods of time make people very irritable, as people talk to them when they are focused on the computer screen. It sounds as though it has become an addiction for your wife. Perhaps the computer should be put away for awhile.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 9:48AM
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If you do nothing about this, you are adding to the problem. If you are aware of what is going on, then you MUST deal with it.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 5:43PM
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I didn't read all the replies.

I feel for you. My sister is exactly like this. She has a Jekyll/Hyde personality, but most of the time she is just downright mean - to everyone. I basically cut her out of my life because I couldn't deal with "which person" she would be each time I talked to her. She's been through 2 marriages, and has been alone for many years with just her 11 year old daughter (who is becoming her). She's 52 so the change of life isn't helping either.

She complains about everything, and I mean everything. She's so negative that no one wants to be around her. I wrote her a letter a long time ago telling her she needs to seek help for her attitude. Unfortunately, there's no talking to my sis face to face because she'll BLOW UP and storm out. Everyone walks on eggshells around my sister because if you say anything not to her liking, she'll get that nasty attitude that has become all too familar to us all.

Everything is always the other person's fault - never hers. I could go on an on.

So, being that you are married to a woman like this, I think it's about time you stand up to her and let her know that she needs to seek help because she's ruining her marriage, not to mention that children lead by example. One of her in your household is one too many.

How old is she? Is she going through menopause or has she been like this forever? Just because she's sad and depressed doesn't mean the entire family has to deal with the effects of that. Put your foot down now. I could never understand why some people love misery and have to drag everyone down with them.....misery loves company, they say.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2009 at 6:35PM
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Wow, thnaks for all the info. I feel better just knowing there may be some hope. I am going to get "the walking on Eggshells" book. I also plan to tape or video so that we can discuss why this happens and the effect on the children and family. She is just over 50 so there may be other issues now but this has been building for years. I will work to get her into her doctor and suggest that she explain what is going on in her life. Her GP may not be able to handle this so maybe I will try and find someone that can help at a higher level and prescribe the med's if she needs them. I just don't like people having to be on med's to get through day to day life.

Thanks again for all the suggestions and your thoughts. This board has been my first and only outlet.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 12:01PM
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I believe everything you say Simplelove...My DH described every single thing that is happening to you as happening to him,with his EX down to mother just like her, neighbors , family and the kids running from the screaming and misery, and yes, the first child old enough to get out, did just that..DH got out and people told him he looked ten years younger and was always smiling...Unless she gets help and meds or whatever it is that will turn her around(which may never happen) I know what your future looks like....Battling it out with your SO or new wife, turning your kids against you and new partner(if you are now not so damaged and lucky enough to find one)DH survived it and got happy again, but please dont let her drag you and your kids down with her....If she refuses help, go it alone...You can find happiness again...

    Bookmark   January 10, 2009 at 3:06PM
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Thanks dotz for the words of encourgement. I sometimes think of what it would be like not to have my guard up and ready to defend at a moments notice. I also wonder if I have delt with this so long I am damaged goods and would hurt a good person or not be able to get close. Things have been a little better this week as she seams to be in a good place. I know I have to get out but my biggest fear is the kids might have to deal with her alone and take the full brunt of normal anger plus angery with me for leaving. I feel I can protect them where I am today but I am looking for a way to safely get everybody to a good place including my wife.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 1:31AM
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Simplelove, since you said your wife is in a "good place" right now. I think this is the time to talk to her about getting some help. Be compassionate, offer to go with her to the doctors, but let her know that its hurting you and your children and even herself and you want everyone to live in peace. You can't bring this up when shes in one of her rages, it will fall on deaf ears. I would do it calmly and compassionately.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 10:27AM
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Hi Simplelove, What I mean by damaged is not that you are damaged goods, but that you would find it hard to trust someone again after what you ve been thru...Was thinking about you staying to protect children from the outbursts,DH was also hesitant to leave, but Ex actually forced him out after he refused to assault a neighbor that had(in her mind) offended her...He says she did him a favor, and as it turned out she was less hard on the child left at home, because everyone was gone, he could have gone and lived with his dad, which would have left her all alone.....Anyway, just wanted to clarify, didnt think of you as damaged goods, I have nothing but emphathy for your situation...

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 1:31PM
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Dotz, I knew exactly what you meant. I now have trust issues and have become numb to most of my feelings. I sometimes wonder if I am like the abused dog at the pound that winces when you go to pet him. I am often surprised by kindness I see in some women and a little jealous of their husbands. I think if I ever get out of here I will take some time to find me again to make sure I don't take any part of this current relationship into a new one. I hope it will not come to that and for now I am going to try and make things better. I was a child of multiple divorces and I know my children would be better off with mom and dad in the house. I just have to make sure it is an emotionally healthy house. Thanks Again!

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 12:00AM
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Is this ever a wakeup call for me. I also posted on the "lack of intimacy" thread. My husband also has a Jekyll/Hyde personality to go along with the fact that he never wants to be intimate with me.

He's not angry all the time like simplelove's wife, but usually several times a day something will set him off. I totally understand the "walking on eggshells" because it can be anything from something major to something completely unimportant- like a bird crapping on his car -that will send him into a tantrum. Unbelievable. I've begged him to see someone about his anger issues, and he's promised to mention it to his GP for a referral, but of course never does.

He is not physically abusive and many times his anger is not even directed toward me, but it is still a bad situation. As someone else mentioned, he always feels "justified" by his reactions and thinks because I am not a "drama queen" like he is, that I live in a "fairy-tale world" - just because I don't scream even something doesn't go my way.

People like this need help. I was never around anyone who behaved this way until I married my husband three years ago - I'm 45 and he's 50. It is devastating to me.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 12:22PM
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I do have to tell you having worked at CPS -emotional abuse is a reason children are removed from homes, and the fact you are not protecting them by getting them away from their mother will look bad on you too. You have to act now or the next thing you know you won't have any children to protect-either she is going to completely lose it or someone is going to report her and like I said you will lose the children too because you allow them to live with her.
better get some help fast!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2009 at 7:13AM
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You know what the aftermath is, for a child who grows up like this? The rest of his or her life there are problems with authority, trouble in school, at work and maybe with the law. Possible escape to drugs and alcohol or codependent relationships and personality disorders. Anorexia, bulimia, overeating, inability to trust other people, anti-social behaviors such as avoidance of others or outright hostility. Overt or suppressed anger, depression, suicide, jail time. Some of us even marry a person just like the abuser. The we have kids and it starts all over again.

You say she is in calm waters right now. That's the old roof saying "When it's not raining don't fix the roof and when it is raining you can't fix it." It will rain again, believe me.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2009 at 8:32PM
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Simplelove, sounds like you are married to one of my sisters! I feel for you. "Some people make people happy wherever they go and some people make people happy whenever the go". lol
I'd never heard that one. But true it is. You seem like a loving that is deeply concerned for his wife and kids. I'm sure you'll find a way to do what is best for you and yours.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2009 at 7:35PM
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Simplelove, stop being a 'nice guy' and go to this website. Take the self-test and I bet you'll find a lot of yourself there. Start with the self-help forum there and you'll find a lot of men who are in the same situation as you.

Good luck.

Here is a link that might be useful: Does this describe you?

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 4:54PM
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Funny gardengrl, my results are:

33 - 39
You could be a poster child for the nice guy syndrome

Looks like I might need to look into this further. I don't want to have to change the things that make me "nice". I just want to make the best out of any stituation and enjoy life. Life is short and fighting is not a fun sport or activity for me.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 8:28PM
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Grown up mature women love NICE!!!! And people who know themselves dont change to cater to the audience that likes cruel , bad boys....

    Bookmark   January 24, 2009 at 12:06AM
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Gee-why can't I find a man like you?

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 11:06AM
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Hi Simplelove, your wife sounds exactly like my FDH's exwife. We believe she might have Borderline Personality Disorder. Have a look at this website: There's also a book called walking on eggshells, I think by Richard Warsak, I'll get back to you on that.

My FDH stayed with BM for as long as he could, trying to make things better and thinking that it was good for the kids to stay together. You said that that is very important to you. And it is, but if the situation is like yours then it can be more healthy for you and your kids to get out of the 'angry zone'. It's unpredictable and even if there are good days or weeks; you're always waiting for next time right? That probably gives your kids a lot of stress in itself, so they don't really get a break.
If you were to separate then at least they will come to your place and have the break + experience a normal life. My FDH came out of the divorce pretty devastated and it took him a good 3 years to get ready for dating again. But hey, that is not even that long. FDH has peace knowing that he tried everything he could before he finally left.

I read the post that Scarlett put on here earlier where she said:
"My mother was like that. A rage-aholic. My two siblings and I grew up to be codependents because we learned to always try to appease her and walk on eggs. We are all middle aged now and have racked up numerous divorces, career and parenting problems."

I think that says a lot. I don't want to tell you you should split up, can't really judge the situation that well, but I do think that unless you take a bold step and put a stop to it, your wife will not make an effort to change. And it probably would have to be a drastic move on your part, like temporarily living apart till she gets professional help and makes improvements. I think she will keep blaming everybody else and everything else for as long as she can get away with it (which is for as long as you will allow this to continue).

You said that you worry that the kids are alone with her if you were to leave. So take them with you. Set up a support network for yourself so that you can take care of them (make arrangements with the school, friends, family, daycare?) and take them with you. Would she take you to court? Then ask for a mental evaluation, she will not be able to refuse that for the family court. Express your concerns for her and let the court assess it and take it from there.

Good luck with it all!!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 10:42PM
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Sorry got the books mixed up. There is 'Stop Walking on Eggshells' by Paul T Mason and Randi Kreger, and there is 'Divorce Poison' by Richard Warshak. Both good books.
Also to get advice in how to deal with the behaviors.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 10:45PM
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Simplelove, I'm so glad you checked out that site! My husband bought that book years ago, did all the exercises, and we have a much, much, MUCH healthier relationship because of it. We didn't have the issues you and your wife are struggling with, but more of a leadership/confidence issue. I love my husband dearly, but couldn't respect him as he let me walk all over him. Really, I don't think any woman wants that in a partner.

The title is a bit misleading, but it sounds better than "No More Mr. Doormat" and it's not meant to take the "nice" qualities out of you, but teach you how to have healthy boundaries, stop making covert contracts (giving to get), and learn how to stop trying to fix other people's problems.

Check out the online support forum and read a little first. I think you can get the book at a bookstore, but most probably have to order it online. It'll either help you turn your relationship around completely or send it to a long overdue grave.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 2:35PM
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Simplelove, I would bet real money on depression and/or Borderline personality disorder.

I understand what you mean about being the whipping boy, I stood between my ex's wrath and my kids many times, but it ended up choosing sides - and what side did the kids end up on? For the most part, mum's because they feared her, and for many years she undermined me and thought nothing of calling me stupid and useless in front of them - she would call me "horrible and cruel" for- wait for it - me calmly saying to her "just listen to how you are talking to me" or "how would you like it if I said that to you?"

I got out of there and am estranged from one daughter, the youngest, who still lives with her mother, the eldest one moved out and went to uni about as far as she could go and says she never sees herself living 'at home' again - she's too loyal (if that's the word) to criticise her mother to me except on rare occasions, and I try my hardest to be neutral about it, and support her mother as parents should - if it's something reprehensible I try not to buy into it, if you know what I mean.

Your kids deserve to see you in a normal relationship so they can get an idea of what one is like, so that they don't end up that messed up. You are right, though, you'd need time to move on from that, and probably therapy.

One angle to get your wife into treatment is to try and start with marriage counselling. If it becomes obvious to them she's the one who needs help they may be able to introduce the idea. MY ex would never have a part of it, although I begged her to.

You yourself probably need therapy, I don't mean that in a bad way but this is taking a toll on you. Maybe try that first, especially if she won't go to counselling.

My ex would never admit she was wrong, nor apologise to me (she was not too terrible to the kids, it was almost like she directed all her - meanness to me, to protect the kids. In that sense I guess they're lucky.) - like yours she did not get on well with her family and always had drama at work etc....never her fault.

Good luck and don't let it drag out. Reclaim the rest of your life. I frittered almost 20 years of mine but was reborn (not in a religious sense) when I met my soul mate and the past wonderful 7 years have wiped the hurt of 20. It is possible. No more eggshells for me.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 1:04AM
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Sir, if you want your kids to hate you more than they will hate their mother, then continue to allow her bad behavior.

Incidentally, the best thing my husband ever did was lock me out of the house the night I ranted and raved at my child. I wandered the street in bare feet thinking about my bad behavior, and haven't done it again since.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 12:19PM
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I've been wondering how you are getting along. Would you care to give us an update?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 12:13PM
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