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Wife hates her brother, step father and now me, I think.

Community Member

Hello . I married the girl of my dreams 9 years ago and everything was great for a few years. Then we found we couldn't have children so had a failed ivf. My wife's brother came back on the scene after draining her father of money and now coming to her step father and mother for money . They started to develop buildings and the brothers a builder. 

My wife used to get beaten by her brother but always used to come out smelling of roses so she developed hatred towards him and how he treated people. We row a lot now, each time a bit worse than before, she's always crying and doesn't work. I feel a great pressure to work and support our living. I have no friends anymore. I ask her to get help but she won't .the glass is always half empty.

i am running out of options and sometimes just feel like cutting my losses. Life is too short.

please help 

3 Replies 3

Community Member

Hi Stihl.  I feel it for both of you.  Your poor wife, she was abused by her brother, he got away with it.  I too was abused by mine, he too got away with it.  It sounds as though she's extremely frustrated because she feels as though she's 'failed' in everything she's tried to do.  A failed IVF, how devastating for her.  I imagine she put all her hopes and dreams into being the 'perfect' mum, that didn't happen.  Then her 'hated' brother reappears and seems to be doing well.  She's not angry with you, as such, it's just that you're the only one she can 'dump on' and, to her, you don't 'understand' because it didn't happen to you.  Can I ask what exactly you row about, her brother, her feelings of inadequacy because of no children (she's probably blaming herself for that).  Is she angry/jealous because you have a job?  Maybe she feels inadequate because she's 'failed' to get a job.  Sometimes when women are unable to contribute in some way, they feel 'down'.  I would say, from what you've said, she feels that she's a hopeless failure in every way.  Try suggesting gently that she could get a volunteer job, or perhaps paid work, if she can.  I know since I've had mine, it's been a tremendous help for me.  My 25 year marriage has just gone 'belly up', without the support of my fellow volunteer workers and BB, I'd feel 10 times worse.  We had no children either.  As I said earlier, I was abused terribly by my brother, I've forgiven him, but he no longer counts in my life, I've completely shut him out.  Counselling and meds do help, she also needs to know you love her and support her in every way.  She may have to try several types of work before she finds one she's happy with.  That's fine, let her know that, no matter what, you're there to encourage her.  Keep her away from brother and other family members till she's emotionally strong enough to cope with the crap, that's what it is.  In order for her to regain her 'strength' she must get rid of the emotional 'poison' that's 'eating her.  That's paramount to her recovery.

All the very best.

Community Member

Hi pipsy. Thank you for your understanding words. My wife has had councilling in the past and says she won't do it again. We row about her family most of the time and then she starts slating my family for no good reason so I flare up. I always think she is the angriest woman in the world. 

When she is happy it's great . My job isn't the highest of paying but it has supported us both for the last few years. When I say to her she needs to get a job, she says she hates working with people and she doesn't know what to do. She has lost all her self worth and confidence as she is a very clever person . She's unable to make decisions anymore.

i don't really have any real friends anymore and neither does she. I have made her start going to fitness classes so she is meeting other women there and hopefully that is cheering her up  .

thanks for listening, sorry it is all over the place


Dear Stihl

Welcome to Beyond Blue. Like Pipsy I think your wife's outburst are the result of anger and frustration at the way she was treated. Have you imagined how it would be if you were the abused person. All that betrayal as a young child and no one defending her. The people who were supposed to take care of her left her in the hands of an abusive brother. How very dreadful.

She complains about your family, possibly because part of her is jealous you were brought up in a safe environment. I know jealousy is a hard word and neither of you may feel it is correct.Compare you different lives as young children and how it was for her. And now her brother is back on the scene.

If he is getting money from his mother and stepfather that is their responsibility. Your wife cannot be blamed for this and the parents will eventually discover they have abused. Perhaps her family, except brother, will be reconciled.

Can you suggest your wife does some online counselling? I have just come across Mindspot which is funded by the Australian Government. Web address www.mindspot.org.au One of its partners is Beyond Blue. Your wife can complete an online assessment, receive a report and recommendations for treatment. This treatment can be done online I believe. In any event it would be good to have a professional opinion.

I know your wife has received counselling previously. How did she find a counsellor?  Can you go with her to see your GP? Counselling does not work for everyone, at least not initially. Many people see it as a sign of weakness or the person at fault. And she has certainly been put in that position for a long time. It is not surprising she is angry so often.

How do you arguments start? Any particular triggers? If you can work out where these arguments begin you may be able to stop before you get going. Does  your family need defending? Can you let it go without fighting? Your wife wants you to feel angry to understand how it feels for her. And she does not realise this is what is happening.

You are contributing to the inferno as much as your wife by arguing about both families. Agree with her where you can, it will dampen the flames. Listen without comment (hard but doable). Show and tell her you love her and will protect her. It will be a long road but did you marry only for the good times? Does your wife enjoy being so angry and unhappy? When you are desperately hurt it can be hard to rejoice in the happiness of others so please cut her some slack.