Relationship Roadblocks
"I am here to fight for my marriage to Jacki," Steve says.
"I have had enough of Steven," Jacki declares. "Steve always wanted me to put him above the rest of my family, and I had a hard time doing that."
Steve says he comes last in Jacki's world, right after her pets. As a driver for a rock band, he says he's often gone for long stretches of time. "When I came home from being on the road, I found out that she invited her mom and dad to stay with us," he shares. "Jacki's mom ran our house."
[AD]Tearing up, Jacki says, "Steve had no sympathy whatsoever that my mother was dying. It made me hate him, because he allowed himself not to get along with my mother when he knew how important it was for me. A month after my mother passed away, he asked the question: ‘When are you going to get rid of this stuff?'"
In spite of their relationship woes, Steve is still holding out hope. "I want to save the relationship because I still love my wife," he says.
"I agreed to give it another try because I just wanted to know if it wasn't going to work out, that I gave everything I had. Deep down inside, I don't think it will work," Jacki admits.
"How long have y'all been married?" Dr. Phil asks the couple.
"Four years," Jacki replies.
"Out of that time, how much have you actually spent together day to day?"
"When we got married, Steve left to go back on the road with his job. Nine months out of the year he travels," Jacki answers. "I never knew what it was like to live with him. Steve just wasn't there."
"Am I to assume that if you knew then what you know now, you never would have married him?" Dr. Phil probes.
Jacki shakes her head. "I think it was a mistake."
Dr. Phil points out that while Steve was on the road, Jacki went on with her life as if she had no husband. "You moved your parents into the house without telling him," he says to Jacki.
[AD]Jacki refutes this. "When my mother was in the hospital, I called him on the phone and said, ‘Mom's crying. She's sick. She's dying. She wants to come live with us,' and he said, ‘I don't see a problem in that.'"
"Did you move in your ex-boyfriend?" Dr. Phil asks.
Jacki falters. "Yeah," she says.
"Without telling him?"
"No, I told him," she replies.
"I didn't agree with that," Steve says.
"Did you cheat on her?" Dr. Phil asks Steve.
When Steve says he didn't, Jacki says she doesn't believe him. "No doubt in my mind," she tells Dr. Phil. She recounts an incident where she was on the phone with her husband and she heard a woman's voice in the background.
"There's nothing I will do on the road that I can't do with my wife, while she's with me," Steve says in his own defense. "I do have some female friends. I travel quite a bit. I have friends just for the sake of having company when I have dinner or lunch."
Jacki explains why she doesn't believe her husband.
Dr. Phil observes that the couple doesn't even live in the same state. "Why did you marry the boy to begin with?" he asks Jacki.
"Steve came along and literally swept me off my feet. He said, ‘You know what, Jacki? You don't have to work anymore,'" she says. "Very appealing."
[AD]"Is there any theory under which you're willing to work on this relationship?" Dr. Phil asks her.
She takes a deep breath. "I wish I had an answer," she responds.
Dr. Phil asks Jacki if she would be willing to meet with a marital counselor, and she says yes. Steve agrees to therapy as well.
"If after that, she says, ‘That's it. I'm done,' will you accept that?" Dr. Phil asks Steve.
"I would have to," he answers.