While I was in the shower, my wife and teenager got into an argument because the teen was not cleaning up a huge mess that had accumulated under the couch. Our (nonbinary) teen started freaking out and yelling. Given the advice we had been given, I thought it would be betteter to let things cool down and then engage them about the mess. No, my wife wanted it solved right then and demanded that I get them to clean up the mess. While this was happening, I got the teen's meds ready. In the midst of the fight, they refused to take the meds. They said that the birth control pill prescribed for their overly long periods was causing them pain. I told them they still needed to take the three psychiatric pills, They refused because "If I do, Mom will make me take the other pill." So what does my wife do? She says that they HAVE TO TAKE ALL FOUR. Granted, I would prefer that they take all four. But it has been a year since we have been to the ER and psych hospitals, and that is largely due to the medications. Taking those medications (for anxiety, mood swings, and psychosis) were the top priority because I did not want to spend the weekend in the ER. Also, the fights would get worse, not better, if they skipped those meds. Nor would further emotional and mental deterioration help get the living room cleaned! The teen also complained that I had not done anything to defend them against their mother!
Even as I explained this to my wife, she kept undermining my authority and insisting that it had to be her way--all or nothing. After I finally got very angry, my wife finally said I could do what I wanted--even though she still disagreed. They had also rationalized that they had to take an even amount of pills (even though they have an OCD issue with the number 4). Eventually, they said they could take the three remaining pills because they took a melatonin.
I went out for a very, very, long walk. As I was leaving, I told them both why I am reluctant to get involved--neither one of them respects me and is willing to work with me to resolve the problems. BOTH of them have to have it their way or the highway. My solutions are dismissed as if I must be stupid.
Guess what happened after they calmed down? They took the birth control pill!
My wife was "sorry that it seemed like [she] was treating me like a puppet." She refused to recognize that she gives me incentives to NOT GET INVOLVED by humiliating me and undermining my authority n front of the kids. WHy bother when it will be futile and I will just get told that I am not doing it "right"--even though her way is clearly not working?
If one arm is bleeding and the other is hemorrhaging, you put a tourniquet on the hemorrhaging arm before worrying about the other arm. Without the psych meds, our teen would be hemorrhaging.
It's never "Gee, i can't solve this problem so you try my way." It's always, "My way isn't working, so you need to repeat exactly what I am doing!"
I told her, if she thinks I am so useless, why should I even be in the marriage.