When violent incidents such as those of former NFL player Ray Rice punching his fiancée, now wife, flash on our television screen, we are appalled and sickened. While this physical battering is atypical and is the end of the scale for abuse, there are many more misunderstandings and frustrations among couples where one is a professional athlete.

The best way to get a snapshot of this problem is to talk to a victim. We recently spoke with the wife of an NFL player, whose concern for her privacy and that of her husband caused her to ask us to refrain from identifying her. Her comment speaks volumes about the problems of marriages of professional athletes.

“My husband played in the NFL for more than 6 years and it was a pressure-cooker for both of us,” she said. “He was constantly worried about being injured or cut from the team and, being the closest person to him, I got the brunt of this anxiety. This pretty much drove me nuts too,” she said.

“Plus, the stress of raising three, little kids – pretty much by myself – and the constant yelling added to the problems we had,” she said. “The hormone replacement therapy helped me get a handle on the stress because I felt better…stronger. In a weird way, I became strong enough to carry both of us through this minefield,” she said.

For many years, observers of professional athletes such as physicians, psychiatrists and even team management have said they see much more of these situations than are reported. Each year, many high profile athletes have confrontations with their wives and significant others in every sport. Andrea Jones, Marketing Director for BioTE Medical, has seen it firsthand.

As the former COO of a Berlin, Germany-based professional basketball team, Jones saw what the stress of being a professional athlete did to personal relationships. Simple misunderstandings and day-to-day stress can turn someone, who is ordinarily a kind person, into an angry man.

“Athletes get paid for being aggressive on the court and on the field,” she said. “They take defeats much harder than someone in another profession. Plus, it takes them longer to turn this off when they come home.”


“According to the New York Times, the divorce rate among NFL marriages is between 60 and 80 percent,” Jones said. “This is a stunning number.”

“These misunderstandings can also lead to affairs.” she said. “And affairs are the easy way out because the athlete doesn’t have to deal with the daily pressure of a serious relationship.”

“Men have always been the ‘hunter/gatherers’ and women the nurturers. Men who are professional athletes are alpha males who spend most of their time competing with other alpha males. Wives don’t communicate in the same way these athletes communicate and as a result, simple misunderstandings can become more serious than they should,” she said.

“With a professional athlete, his career can be over in a flash,” Jones said. “There’s a lot of money, not to mention pride, at stake every time he goes out on the field, whether its practice, preseason or a game.”

“Being a ‘sportswife’ requires a woman to recognize that their husbands are ‘divas’ – someone whose every whim is catered to,” Jones says. “If he comes home from practice or a road trip and she immediately hands him the baby and says ‘you take care of him for a while,’ he will not process this well. In fact, wives of athletes who have recently given birth, are excellent candidates for hormone replacement therapy because it helps them get through postpartum depression and weight-gain which further exacerbates the husband/wife hostility,” she said.


With her background in professional sports management, combined with her knowledge of hormone replacement therapy gained from BioTE Medical, Andrea Jones has a unique perspective on overcoming the interpersonal stress couples face where one is an athlete.

While there is on-going discussion with the professional sports leagues and player’s unions about hormone therapy for active players, the critical time for the player’s psyche comes when he decides it’s time to retire. Several NFL players have taken their own lives after retiring from the game.

“Former players will often go into deep depressions,” Jones notes. “After playing their chosen sports since they were in elementary school and earning recognition and accolades, suddenly becoming just another guy on the street can be difficult for an athlete to handle. It is at this time when the athlete is an excellent candidate for the therapy which BioTE Medical provides, “she said.


Whether it’s the stress and anxiety of being a professional athlete’s wife or the depression an athlete experiences when he or she retires, hormone replacement therapy can help to smooth out these rough edges. Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy is designed to replace what one’s body can no longer produce. The pellets used in this therapy use hormones derived from natural plant sources to replicate the body’s normal hormonal levels.

We asked BioTE Medical founder, Dr. Gary Donovitz, to explain how this approach works to help both the athletes and their spouses overcome the stress that can lead to violence.

If you believe you or your spouse’s anxiety, listlessness and fatigue might be the result of hormone deficiency, click here to be directed to the nearest BioTE medical practitioner.

Thank you BioTE Medical


Services at Green Bay Integrative Health

Green Bay Integrative Health was founded by a traditionally trained doctor after seeing a need for an independent medical clinic that focuses on all facets of an individual’s health and implements a full array of alternative treatment options.