Carsick due to wife's use of cruise control on congested roads

My wife is using cruise control on congested roads, and all the quick deceleration’s, followed by surges when she turns it back on make me want to puke.
When I criticize her driving in any way, she gets mad and drives worse. Anyone have a good way to hint that she might use her foot to drive instead?

Look in the owners manual for the cruise control section. It should state there ‘not for use in traffic’, or something like that.

It’s bad to do, that’s for sure.
Expensive alternative - find a new car with ‘smart’ cruise control that does this automatically
More-expensive alternative - find a new wife…

No cost solution - puke in her lap.

A simple google search will help you find cruise control guidelines. But anyone with half a brain should know not to use cruise in traffic or rain. If you have to keep turning it off and back on you should not be using it.

In addition to all owner’s manuals forbidding the use of cruise in traffic, on congested roads and wet or slippery surfaces, it is illegal in many jurisdictions to use it under those conditions. You could secretly tip off the local police for her own protection. Personally, I would refuse to ride with my wife if she used the cruise in traffic for my own safety.

If your wife continues to use it in traffic she may very well have a serious accident soon.

You could politely (her response may not be polite) ask her to visit this forum and pose the question.

You could also ask her to show you one recommendation by anyone, any car manufacturer, law enforcement agency, owners manual, shop manual, insurance company, or any other source of information which states that it is acceptable and safe to do what she is doing.
That should keep her busy for eons and from behind the wheel of a car with cruise control.

I said a prayer for you both. this one is above my pay grade.

My wife grew up in New York, Long Island to be specific, and had the constant speedup, hit the brakes speed up hit the brakes, would even accelerate to a red light, yes me and passengers were rolling eyes when she drove, looking for the airline bags, now it has taken 20 plus years for her to get better, but every time on the highway as I think, well I’ll let her drive for a bit I get an adrenaline rush thinking about the herky jerky, and people passing us on the right, and carry on with renewed vigor.

This is a job for Dr. Phil.

I wonder what the wife has to say on the ‘girl talk’ forum?

My late wife’s compulsion to drive with her left foot on the brake pedal was annoying but after a few years I resigned myself to annually doing a complete brake job on her cars and adjusting the brake light switch so that it did not trip unless there was actual pressure on the master cylinder. In the long run it was much cheaper. And BTW, Fords required installing an additional return spring on the brake pedal to prevent the brake lights constantly being on.

Of course I had no faults for her to deal with.

Do you drive too sometimes or do you not drive ?
show her what exactly you expect her to do and what the difference feels like from the passenger seat.
If you’re not a driver ask a friend to show the example.

Cruise control is not really meant as '‘push button driving’'
but you know that.
find the reading material if she won’t hear it from you.

Your wife WILL have a collision doing this.

A war of wills can often escalate the conflict, A no win conflict that becomes unaffordable can result. Being right can be a terrible liability.

You drive when with her.

@Carsick Husband–Maybe you could make a profit from your wife’s driving. Give the car a hail-me paint job, put a meter in the car, and put a lighted sign on the top that says “Taxi”. Most cab drivers seem to drive this way.

“…compulsion to drive with her left foot on the brake pedal…”

I’m thinking the new feature that deactivates the throttle if the brake is pushed might cure a lot of left-foot brakers of resting their foot on the brake pedal.

“You clould secretly tip off the local police for her own protection.”

Really? Snitch on your wife to the cops…for using the cruise control?

  1. I’m trying to envision a scenario in which the cops don’t laugh in one’s face: a criminal complaint for too-frequent CC use! (What’s next: complaint for leaving the toilet seat up?)

  2. Betray spouse to to the authorities? If my wife “pulled a Judas” on me, unless there were directly life-threatening concerns, she would become my ex-wife.

My wife has a habit of setting the cruise control for about the speed limit and then adding an MPH or three above that with her foot. I told her that it was unsafe as the car would not slow as quickly when she lifted her foot. It would settle at the cruise control speed until she hit the brake. She thinks I’m nuts, which may be true, but not about this matter.

I rarely use cruise control. My normal cruise control is the accelerator pedal. I found long ago that cruise exacerbates “highway hypnosis” (falling asleep at the wheel).

There’s another facet to this. Assume for the sake of discussion there’s an accident that is not the fault of the OP’s wife in any way whatsoever.

What if they go in there and determine through the PCM that the cruise control was in use where it was not supposed to be? An insurance company for the other party would have a field day with that and if it ended up in court after push came to shove it’s also possible a jury or judge could decide the wife brought it on herself. That could lead to maximum insurance payouts, liens on personal property for deficiencies, and even bankruptcy court for the OP.

Some years ago there was a lunchtime collision here in OK where some teens ran an SUV off a 45 MPH county road and hit a tree; killing one and injuring the others after they swerved to avoid a turning oil tanker. There were the usual syrupy local news stories with a followup now and then about “coping” and “closure” and even an insinuation that the oil tanker was at fault.
Many months later it was revealed that data from the PCM showed the SUV was doing 98 MPH when it swerved and left the roadway.