Wife's A.M. Routine Frustrates Him
Q: I'm losing sleep! My wife wakes up a solid hour before I do in order to apply her make-up. I'm a light sleeper and all of that bathroom noise is a frustrating way to start the day. Besides, she looks beautiful as is and spends a fortune on all that stuff. It seems like a waste of time and money. — Victor, 38
Dr. Susan: As a light sleeper myself, I sympathize. Nevertheless, I suggest you tackle what you can, and get used to the rest. For instance, no matter how lovely you believe your wife is, she is clearly insecure enough to spend a lot of money and time on her appearance. (It's probably not only make-up, but her hair, too.) That's just a fact of life for a lot of women, especially those who fear letting the signs of aging show (and very few don't). So separate your annoyance over the unnecessary noise from the irritation over the waste of time and money.
What you can possibly change is how she goes about all that in the morning while you're trying to stay asleep. Applying make-up shouldn't be noisy, though hair-dryers are. When she wakes up, she can get what she needs from the bedroom (preparing it in one convenient spot before going to sleep), and then shut the door (quietly!). She should close the bathroom door too. And leave the noisy stuff for the end. Some people can't put things down quietly, but surely they can learn.
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Advice for Her
Advice for Him
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.