Ask Rene: How Could He Do This To Me?

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Ask Rene:
How Could He Do This To Me?

 

Hi Rene:

My husband and I have been married for seven years. The first four were pretty good; he had a great job, we owned a home and had two kids, who I currently stay at home with. Then at the height of the recession, Jeff lost that job.

What followed was pure hell. We lost our home, had to move in with his family and ran through out entire savings.

About six months ago, Jeff got a better-paying job and we began to slowly rebuild our financial life. Then things got even better; Jeff was offered a promotion and a 40,000 a year raise!

And then he turned it down.

My husband is so unhappy in the environment where he works. He says it’s sucking the life out of him; he put on weight and dealt with  a blood pressure problem this year. He says he also wants to do something more creative. But him not taking the better job (salary) means we’re still stuck in this crappy apartment, clipping coupons and praying for life to get better.

Rene I’m so angry I don’t know what to do. What kind of man who’s caring for his family does that? Doesn’t he remember how bad it was for so long? I’m very worried because my anger with him has not only not gone away, it’s gotten worse and I fear his decision is going to tear our marriage apart.

Please help!

Disappointed and hurt

 

 

Dear Disappointed and hurt:

I understand you are hurting. I understand you are scared. What I am having a hard time with is, and forgive me, I don’t mean to pile on, is your attitude. This letter makes you sound a bit selfish. It might be time for a little soul-searching on your part. So here’s what I’m thinking and what I would do if I were you. 

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TALK TO YOUR HUSBAND 

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The basis of all good relationships is communication so it’s time to pull on your big girl britches and have a chat with the man you married. Tell him how you’re feeling and when you’re finished, listen to him (not with your arms crossed, wearing a smirk) as he explains what went into his decision-making. Maybe there’s more to the story and hearing it might help you understand.

Read more:  Monday Morning Motivation: The Best Is Yet To Come!

HE DIDN’T “DO THIS TO YOU”

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I’m not sure how much discussion he had with you about it, but it sounds like this was less about you and more about him (and his health), which, given that he is the primary bread-winner, ultimately is about you. You said it in your letter; Jeff has struggled with high blood pressure and his weight this year. Is cash and a casa to call your own worth a husband in an early grave? I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around that, honestly.

Read  more: Ask Rene: My Kids Trashed Me Online! 

PUT YOURSELF IN HIS SHOES

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Have you ever been in a job you hated or one where you knew you didn’t fit in? I have. It’s perhaps one of the worst experiences you can have in your adult life. What makes it worse is when you feel like you’re trapped and that misery spills over into other aspects of your life. If your husband is that unhappy, it will affect not only his health but your home life.  Why would you want that?

Read more: Why Reinvention ROCKS!

GET HELP WITH YOUR
ANGER IF YOU NEED IT

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Frankly, I’m a little baffled about what it is you’re most worried about. Is it money? Were you hoping that you could buy nice things or own a home again? You will be able to but maybe not right now. But what you can do now is look at the big picture. Weigh the comforts of a home against your husband’s physical, mental and emotional health. Then, if you can’t do it on your own, get help to work through your anger, maybe with a counselor or clergy member. Do it for the sake of your family, your marriage and your health.

 Read more: Good Enough Mother: How I Hit The Brink And Found My Way Back Again

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You are not alone in clipping coupons and tightening belts; most of the country is going through some form of that.  Do what the majority of them are doing; Suck.It.Up. Maybe you can help shoulder some of the financial burden by getting a part-time job or finding ways to earn extra income from home.

The fact is there are options. Stop complaining and start looking.

Good luck!

Do you have a question for Rene? She has an answer. Click here and fire away. And don’t forget to follow the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

More from GEM:

Ask Rene: Why Didn’t Anyone Warn Me?!

Ask Rene: Home Alone…. How Young Is Too Young?

Ask Rene: Help! Can Work And Relaxation Go Hand-In-Hand?

 

 

 

 

 

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Rene Syler is a wife, mother, breast cancer advocate and television personality whose burning desire to tell the truth about modern motherhood led her to create GoodEnoughMother.com. When not spending time with her family or burning something for dinner, Rene travels the country as host of Sweet Retreats on The Live Well Network and Exhale on Aspire.

10 Comments

  1. Gigi

    January 29, 2013 at 9:35 am

    I agree with this advice and what most people are saying over at facebook. I’m going to add something from a slightly different angle. I am a mother of two young kids who quit my full time decently paid job because I was super miserable. I was not the larger breadwinner and we are fortunate enough to be able to slide by with one salary. I also have found part time work that helps contribute. One thing I learned was that if you are going to make such a drastic decision for your family you better leave the misery at the job you left or in this case turned down. A few times I have gotten upset and my husband has pointed out that I left a job (which he ultimately supported) to get away from these feelings. I needed to evaluate what exactly was making me miserable and if it was more than the job find a way to get over it. It has led to a lot of soul searching but I would suggest that her husband’s problems might not just be about work. I’m not saying the demanding job he hates doesn’t play a large part of it but sometimes they don’t magically go away if he has let frustration and anger or apathy take over for too long. Just a thought.

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