Mozart, welcome to the TAM forum. I'm sorry to hear about the discord in your marriage. The behavior you are describing -- inappropriate anger, extreme jealousy, depression, anxiety, and inability to trust -- are classic traits of BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder). I'm not suggesting that your W has full-blown BPD -- only a professional can determine whether her BPD traits are so severe as to meet the diagnostic criteria. Instead, I am suggesting your W may have mild to strong BPD traits. Even when the traits fall well short of the diagnostic criteria, they can make your marriage miserable.
It is easy to spot strong occurrences of these traits -- i.e., the red flags -- in a woman you've been in a LTR with for three years. There is nothing subtle about traits such as jealousy, verbal abuse, controlling behavior, and constant blaming. I therefore will discuss a few of the traits. If this discussion rings a bell, you may want to read more about them so you know the warning signs. I therefore provide links to resources at the end.
I remember having quite a few conversations where she explained her fear of me being unfaithful. I simple reassured her that I loved her and would do nothing to hurt her. Now we have been married for little more than a year and almost from day one she has shown great jealousy...
BPDers (i.e., those with strong BPD traits) are extremely jealous because they have a great fear of abandonment. During the honeymoon period, this fear is suspended because the BPDer is infatuated with you, making her feel like you are the perfect man. Normally, the abandonment fear would rear its ugly head within 6 months because that typically is the longest infatuation will last when you are seeing each other frequently. Yet, because you had a LDR, the infatuation may have lasted throughout the first year.
In any event, the fear apparently returned early in the second year because you observe that she was already expressing fear of your being unfaithful. If your W is a BPDer, there is absolute nothing you can do to reduce that irrational abandonment fear. A BPDer has carried that fear inside her since age 3 or 4 (when it was created). You can keep reassuring her but the fear is like a bottomless pit of need.
I feel like I am walking on eggshells around her.
That's why the best selling BPD book (targeted to spouses like you) is called Stop Walking on Eggshells
. A BPDer carries enormous anger inside from early childhood. Because the anger is already there and is just below the surface, you do not have to do anything "to make her angry." She is already angry. Hence, to release that anger, all you have to do is say or do something that triggers her abandonment fear. And you never know just what phrase, expression, or action will be the trigger.
With my exW, for example, my looking at another woman for one-half second, instead of one-third second, would do it. Another trigger would be my walking on the sidewalk one or two steps ahead of her, which she interpreted to mean I did not want to be seen with her. And, of course, to test my love, she would often slow down to increase our spacing so she could see how quickly I would slow down. With a jealous woman, you are setting yourself up for a lifetime of frequent testing of that ridiculous nature.
[Since day one of the marriage] she acted depressed.... she is often angry or depressed.
As I noted above, all BPDers carry enormous anger inside from childhood. They also suffer from depression and anxiety. Because they have very low self esteem and hate themselves, they typically are unhappy. And, because they feel entitled to things (just as a child feels entitled), they fully expect the H to make them happy. Of course, that is an impossible task. So, as the years of the marriage go by, a BPDer grows increasingly resentful of her H's inability to make her happy or fix her. At the same time, she grows increasingly fearful of abandonment as she sees her body age. This is why the BPDer typically ends the marriage -- after about 12-15 years -- by walking out. My exW left me at 15 years.
It has been a constant fight and now I am at the breaking point. I love her with all my heart and would do anything to prevent from separating.
If your W has strong BPD traits, there is absolutely nothing you can do to help her. Even a roomful of psychologists cannot help her unless she wants to work hard on changing herself. Sadly, it is rare for a BPDer to be sufficiently self aware and to have the ego strength to be willing to do that.
If another woman passes us she accuses me of checking her out. I practically stare at the ground to try and prevent this but somehow she still accuses me.
You are being a doormat, as I was for 15 years. But it is a lot kinder to say you are "walking on eggshells." That's why the best selling BPD book was not called "Stop Being a Doormat." Anyway, you've now spent about two years not being yourself. To be acceptable to your W, you've done a thousand small things (e.g., looking at the ground, avoiding movies with nude scenes) to avoid triggering her temper tantrums. If you keep this up for another two years, you won't even remember the "old Mozart" -- the man you used to be. The bottom line, Mozart, is that a BPDer is extremely controlling of her loved ones to prevent abandonment. So you are being controlled and bullied.
I have never been unfaithful to her so i can not understand why should not trust me.
A BPDer is incapable of trusting you. Her ability to trust was destroyed (or failed to develop) by the time she was four years old.
While we were dating she discovered by going through my email that I was looking at porn.I first lied and simple told her it was spam cause I was embarrassed.
Nearly every partner of a BPDer will lie at some point to avoid her throwing a temper tantrum over nothing. Of course, this is the worst thing you can do to a woman unable to trust. But there you will be -- half way through a $5,000 vacation where the hotel is $250/night -- and you know the vacation will be totally gutted if you are fool enough to admit having glanced at a passing woman. So you will lie. If you choose to live with a jealous woman, this will be your life: occasional lies, no adult-rated movies, and lots of looking at the ground.
[My looking at porn] is one of her favorite things to bring up cause I first lied about it.
If she is a BPDer, you are going to hear about it nearly every time she throws a hissy fit or temper tantrum. Because a BPDer is unable to regulate her emotions, she experiences such intense feelings that she is convinced they MUST be true. For a BPDer, feelings constitute facts. Hence, to justify her intense feeling of being rejected and abandoned by you, she will reach as far into the past as necessary to justify her current feeling (what else can she point to?). This is why a BPDer never forgets any mistake you've made, particularly a LIE.
It may give you some small comfort to know that it doesn't really matter much that she can point to that lie. In the 15 years I was with my exW, I never lied to her once. She nonetheless was so convinced -- about twice a month -- that I was lying that she would create the most convoluted, preposterous argument out of thin air. My point, then, is that the absence of your lie likely would not have slowed your W's jealousy down by much, if anything at all.
She even does it when I am talking to her own family.
It is a lot easier for a BPDer to control you if she isolates you from all family members and friends -- usually claiming that they don't treat her well as an excuse for not visiting them. The last thing she wants is for you to get support from someone saying "That's the most ridiculous excuse I've ever heard in my life."
I make jokes with her and just show how much I love her but somehow I say or do something wrong and then its an argument.
With a BPDer, every joke -- no matter how well received -- is a time bomb that may go off when you repeat that same joke. My exW, for example, once observed that she could tell a joke to her two BPDer sisters 9 times and they would laugh out loud. On the tenth time, she said, they might get so angry that they would not speak to her for a month. And, of course, my exW was the same way. With a BPDer, you never know what joke or comment is going to set her off because she is emotionally unstable.
I simply do not know what I am doing wrong. I have tried many times to talk to her and she blames me saying I flirt to much and don't know the right things to say to her.
If your W has strong BPD traits, it doesn't matter what you are doing -- you will be blamed for every misfortune and for all of her own mistakes. Because she has self loathing and a weak sense of who she is, she likely is unwilling to tolerate the deep shame of acknowledging a mistake or a flaw. The last thing a BPDer wants to see is one more item to add to the long list of things she hates about herself. This is why a BPDer always thinks of herself as "a victim." She refuses to take responsibility for the consequences of her own actions. And, to maintain that illusion, she needs "a perpetrator" (i.e., YOU) around all the time to blame all misfortunes on.
When she does calm down then we are so happy together but those times are few and far between.
Because a BPDer's emotional development was frozen at about age four, she never learned how to do "self soothing" very well to calm herself down. Hence, if you are married to a BPDer, your other role -- in addition to being "the perpetrator" -- is to be the "soothing object." That is why you spend such enormous energy and time trying to sooth your W. The irony is that, by being a constant trigger of her abandonment fear, you likely are agitating her much more than you are calming her. You also are a trigger for her other great fear: engulfment, which I discuss at the link shown below.
Mozart, if this discussion of BPD traits sounds familiar, you may want to read more about them. If so, I suggest you check out my discussion of BPDer behavior in GTRR's thread. My four posts there start at http://talkaboutmarriage.com/anxiety...tml#post188319
. The second and third posts provide links to excellent articles written by professionals. If you have questions, Mozart, I would be glad to try to answer them or point you to a resource that does. Take care.