I have been married over one year, and in the last year, my wife and I have been unable to come to a resolution of an issue that has left me sad, depressed, and not particularly hope-filled.
In short, my wife and my brother, Jim, to whom I am very close, got off to a bad start during our dating period. Their first introduction was not good, and since then, she’s always held a grudge for him. When I revealed to her prior to marriage that he, his wife, and son had stayed with me rent-free for over a year, she essentially badgered me into asking them for back-rent, until I gave in, despite my re-iteration that I allowed them to live free with me FREELY, as a gift because they had moved back home and were in some tough financial straits, albeit temporarily.
When I broached the subject with my brother last fall, it created a chasm between the four of us (my brother, his wife, me, my wife). Basically, my wife does not want to have anything to do with him, despite the fact that he (a) has apologized for his past behavior towards her; (b) we are extremely close because our father abandoned us and our mom when we were children; © I want a relationship with my brother because I have always been close to him (up until my wife and I married).
Essentially, my wife refuses to do much of anything with my brother and his family, constantly looks for the negative, and when she does do something with them, is quiet to the point of passively-aggressively not saying anything, thereby ensuring the situation remains tense and I don’t have a good time. I have asked her, pleaded with her, to allow me what I allow her - namely to have a relationship with my brother, just as she has a relationship with each of her 12 brothers and sisters. Ultimately, she just will not give up any ground.
I am truly at my wit’s end about this. I recently had to be treated medically again for anxiety and some suicidal thoughts, which I believe are largely related to this. I really feel pulled between my brother and my wife. She will not see a priest or counselor, and doesn’t see the problem.
While I believe in marriage as for better or for worse, I also don’t feel it’s fair that I cannot have a basic right fulfilled - the right to associate with my brother, who, despite his many imperfections, is a decent man at heart.
While I am not perfect, I feel like I don’t know what else to do, outside of leaving…Any help would be appreciated.