You might consider that bitter is the real culprit. Women, in particular, are more sensitive to bitter flavor compounds (science, not opinion) and react to the bitter elements in pepper and chile in a very different manner than men do. Smoke has a bitter component as well, but, most of us do not taste it. Those who are sensitive to it find it extremely objectionable. Although he is not a woman
, my BIL is very sensitive to bitter and cannot stand red wines, IPA's and smoked meats.
I tend not to smoke for him and I don't waste any beer on him either. In terms of your wife, that is a tricky problem, as she get's older, her tastes may become even more defined. Best thing is to learn to cook for two different palates.