Supporting wife's self-education
My wife and I have been married four years. We are both highly intelligent, but with very different educations: I have a scientific PhD, but she left college unfinished under personally distressing circumstances. She's also seven years younger than me (I am early/mid 30s). Her failure to finish her education is due both to her physical handicaps (chronic pain and other not-understood problems) and her psychological issues (depression plus several past traumas), which have tripped her up on enough occasions that she now no longer believes she is capable of completing college because of the demands it would place upon her. Instead, she self-studies in the subjects she prefers: math, computers, and the sciences, as well as less academic pursuits such as art and ecology. She prides herself on being a "generalist". For the same reason, she doesn't work, and doesn't have the confidence to try to self-employ.
We have a recurring argument of the sort that seems to personally offend her (rather than being simply an agree-to-disagree situation) over the fact that in the time since we've been together, she has not gained mastery in anything she's studied. As an academically successful person, I see her approach to learning as hopelessly undisciplined and aimless, in no way resembling how a formal education should go. She, in turn, feels betrayed that I apparently judge her for this whenever she tries to involve me. In particular, she would like to use my expertise in math and science to aid her study, but whenever she brings her questions to me, we quickly degenerate into arguments about how she's learning. (This is an extreme example of why I believe that I should never teach someone with whom I'm in a relationship, but she feels that because of our relationship, she should in fact be able to rely on me to do so.)
I am not asking how to change her approach; enough time and fights have passed that I believe this to be impossible. She is strong-willed and never changes her mind about something she's thought about. Instead, I am asking for advice on how better to support her, given my own firm beliefs about how to learn and what one's goals in learning should be. I feel that she's dabbling within her comfort zone; she feels that she's advancing her broad interests; I need to be able to see this as a positive even though she isn't getting any closer to being able to contribute financially.