Author Topic: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?  (Read 39981 times)

stratozyck

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Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« on: April 08, 2016, 10:36:19 AM »
I got married a little over a year ago. When we got married I had no financial concerns - she had a job of similar income as mine. We were friends for many years before and she was able to pay off her student loan debt while working in graduate school. I was impressed by that.

On the day we went to her parents to tell them of our engagement (this was also the first time I met them), she got a call about her "dream job." She had talked to them before and when we were friends, I told her I thought it was a BS offer. It was a startup run by a guy with more dreams than business sense.

How could I be negative on that day? In front of her parents she said, "this is the best day of my life - introducing my future husband to my parents and getting my dream job!" How could I have pulled her aside and been like, is this really a good idea?

Fast forward some time. The dream job stopped paying her two months into it. She had bought a house a year earlier at a 15 year term for admittedly a decent rate. But suddenly, she had no income (or much in savings) and I was still contracted for my apartment for another two months. I suddenly was stuck with two payments. Oh, and she was pregnant (ok my fault on that one). Then I find out the payment she had told me was "adjusted" in that she told me how much she paid after her roommate paid her rent. Roommate left suddenly and she had no rental contract. She refused to consider going back to previous job.

The job was obviously BS. All these people had was artists concepts of what they wanted to do. Its like they spent all their time on posters, models, etc and never go around to actually doing anything. They are no longer around. She wants to sue them but I keep saying - theres nothing to get. There are no assets, no buildings,  to recover from.

Suddenly now she's decided she is ok with being a stay at home mom and "respects her mom for doing whatever she wanted to do career wise." Her mom apparently was a lawyer that took mostly low paying/volunteer stuff while her dad worked at a cubicle job. Her mom also drives a BMW. Now my wife wants to do similar work. She's trying to pass herself off as a "consultant" and wants to write a book. She is a smart girl but gets tunnel vision on ideas that if others say is unrealistic she takes it hard. I casually mentioned that you know, to be a consultant you have to have industry experience. She keeps saying she has 15 years experience (she is counting internships going back to high school, in reality she has 1 year of full time work after school).

I've been trying to hold the line. She wants to take two vacations this year. We simply *must* go see her family across the country. Oh, and the reason she took that risky job is she got advice from an "executive coach" she was paying $400 a month to listen to.

Ok, its all settled now - I am only paying the one living expense now. But every few months I can't help but bring it up. I am not asking for much - she continues to say that buying the house was a great idea. Taking the risky job was a great idea. I keep saying "if it weren't for me you would be foreclosing." In the back of my mind, I wonder if I hadn't married her, if she would have at least learned the lesson of "don't take a risky job if you have a mortgage."

I get occasionally mad now and then because she has to have a career she "loves" because she "loves" her work. She is unemployed. I took a job I tolerate because it pays. She won't even consider taking a job she "tolerates."
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 10:39:11 AM by stratozyck »

AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2016, 10:51:34 AM »
That is a long rambling story, but the basic I got was: "Pregnant wife loses job, has trouble paying the mortgage. Husband is mad he had to pay double payments for two months and now has to support his wife and child by working an OK job."

Is that fair? Because honestly, first my thought is, and forgive me because this is going to come off as very old school, but you are the goddamn husband. It is *your* job to pay the bills above and beyond everything else. If she wants to be a stay at home mom, you should support her. Honestly, its probably for the best considering her poor decision making.

Anyway, your story sort of fades and is somewhat contradictory. Is she a SAHM or is she looking for work? Why did she buy a house after you were married(or while you were engaged) unless it was a joint decision. Lots of other little things not adding up, as if we are only hearing part of the story.

SKL-HOU

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2016, 11:05:33 AM »
I would be upset too. I don't think it is normal although it might be common. All of it seems one sided, all of it rotating around her happiness. She is not acting like an adult. Adults sometimes (ok, often) have to do things they don't like including a paying job that they may not love. The thing is she has you so she feels she has the right to not be an adult because you are taking care of her.

MrsDinero

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2016, 11:09:24 AM »
I don't necessarily agree with AZDude that as the husband paying all the bills is your default responsibility.  I think it should be a decision that both people in the relationship make together.  However it sounds like the two of you never really talked about future plans that included family, financial, career, etc and now you are in this situation and bills have to be paid.

You knew while you were engaged to her that she was essentially without a paycheck, yet you still married her.

"I keep saying "if it weren't for me you would be foreclosing." "
^^^ This does not help.  Phrases like this only creates anger and resentment within each of you, so stop saying it.

If you are looking for advice on what to do, I would suggest getting rid of all the anger first, because it doesn't help with clear thinking.  Then ask her what she wants to do.  The two of you should talk (and it most likely won't happen in one talk) about all the things that were never discussed, including an alternative plan.  Being a SAHM might be the job she loves and doesn't want to rejoin the workforce.  For better or for worse you guys are a team now, so it is time to start working as a team and talking (calmly and without finger pointing).

Marriage counseling also wouldn't hurt. 

big_owl

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2016, 11:11:31 AM »
I second the counseling idea. 

BFGirl

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2016, 11:12:20 AM »
If she is pregnant and/or you have a very young child, it seems to me that this would be a good time for her to stay home for a while if you can afford it financially.  If you can't, then she needs to at least seek something that is paying part-time.

I think you were right in supporting her to try her dream job.  If she hadn't done it because you were against it, she would probably resent you for it at some point. 

I think the two of you need to have a frank discussion and decide on your joint goals and try to come up with a plan that you both can work towards.  It's not fair for one spouse to have to change all of their plans and goals to satisfy the other spouse.  It needs to be a partnership working together to try to make sure both partners are fulfilled to the extent possible.

ChinoLawyer

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2016, 11:26:18 AM »
Your concern seems to be that she is both deciding not to work and not changing her spending patterns.  Leaving you with a lot of financial stress. 

Therefore, as part of your frank (and supportive) discussion it seems that you need an agreement that if your wife wants to be a SAHM that is fine, but there will be some drawbacks such as less vacations, eating out, etc. 

If she is unwilling to change after hearing your concerns in a rational and productive manner, then I suppose counseling would be a must.

But for now, I think she just needs to hear your concerns in a productive manner and you need to understand where she is coming from as well.

mozar

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2016, 11:27:55 AM »
You were engaged when she took the dream job, then you married her? Sounds like you were ignoring red flags. See if she can come around to your thinking eventually,  but being condescending isn't going to help.

Cassie

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2016, 11:41:14 AM »
I think a good marriage counselor can help you both sort this out. It sounds like she wants the kind of life her parents want but you both have to want the same things or have to both compromise.  Marriage is usually about compromise. 1 person does not get to call all the shots and it seems like she is trying to dictate both spending and her not working. 

acroy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2016, 11:50:01 AM »
......... honestly, first my thought is, and forgive me because this is going to come off as very old school, but you are the goddamn husband. It is *your* job to pay the bills above and beyond everything else. If she wants to be a stay at home mom, you should support her. Honestly, its probably for the best considering her poor decision making.


I tend to agree

Interestingly, there's an ongoing topic in Beancounter's thread discussing the 'male privilege thing'. Maybe there is a 'male responsibilities thing' too.

Classic case of a couple with no foundation under the relationship. House built on sand... shows cracks.

Good luck to you and your wife OP, and congratulations on the kiddo!

Giro

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2016, 12:17:54 PM »
Too bad about the kid.  I would not put up with it if it were me.  I have a goal of retiring early and if my spouse decided to stay home and make me support him working several extra years, screw that.  Your life and happiness are not less important than hers. 


prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2016, 12:20:13 PM »
I completely disagree with AZDude and acroy, incomes are a shared duty unless otherwise agreed previously.

If you are comfortable with her remaining a SAHM indefinitely going forward that is fine, but it is not your duty to compensate for her change of mind as far as lifestyle goes if that was not agreed upon previously.

I agree with the common advise though as far as having a honest discussion as far as plans or going to counseling. I would say even if you agree with her becoming a SAHM I would not agree with still going on 2 vacations in a year after taking a heavy financial cut. If she is not willing to cut back along with no longer contributing to the financial side of the marriage while at the same time expecting a child too that would raise some serious flags for me.

I would say that getting pregnant while in a financially precarious situation is going to put a strain on both your finances and your relationship with her too.

Hopefully though if you argue it from the perspective that improving your financial situation by cutting expenses is absolutely necessary to give the best start in life for your baby she might concede to that.

If you are currently sharing household responsibilities equally I would say if she was taking over household duties and you reduced eating out and going out to expensive events you could work a little extra over time every day and have just as much free time plus with less spending that would compensate some too. You would still take a hit but it can be mitigated some depending on your current lifestyle.

Also with being a stay at home parent come other responsibilities such as taking up a larger part of the house work and working on things such as preparing meals saving you money on eating out and freeing you up to potentially put in some more hours at work that would otherwise be spent on doing those chores. I would also make sure that is part of the deal too if she wants to stay at home.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 12:28:33 PM by prognastat »

aFrugalFather

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2016, 12:27:57 PM »
But every few months I can't help but bring it up. ...I keep saying "if it weren't for me you would be foreclosing."

I read this and I think you need to just let the past be the past.  For the good of the family you need to look forward.  Counseling sounds like a good idea.

Cassie

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2016, 12:29:05 PM »
Agree that if one person stays home their job is to make the person that works job easier which means doing all the laundry, cleaning, etc and finding ways to save $, like cooking the meals, etc.  Having a baby is not a f.t. job but it is if she does everything else too.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2016, 12:31:20 PM »
Sahm here...

Is it normal for a woman to not want to work full time after having a baby?
Absolutely....very few women want to leave their baby with a nanny or daycare every day. Most want to work part time or stay home. Unfortunately many women don't realize this until they actually have a baby and their change of heart takes their partner by surprise.

Is it okay for a nonworking partner to demand a 2 income lifestyle?
Absolutely not. I believe the sahm has a duty to be financial defense for her family and take saving and budgeting seriously. It seems like the best sahms tend to be modern versions of the old school farmers wife archetype: hardworking, giving, thrifty. Spendy, high maintenance, and demanding are terrible qualities for a stay at home spouse. Sahms are workhorses....they do the dirty work no one sees or pays for, so any woman who wants to be one needs to be able to find a certain level of contentment in doing important but nearly invisible work. Your wife sounds like she is very worried about self fulfillment and self actualization in her work....she may not last long as a sahm.

Is it normal for a sahm to want a creative outlet?
Yup...but it cant take away from her job of caring for the family and watching the finances or else her working partner will rightfully feel like they are being taken for a ride.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 12:38:59 PM by little_brown_dog »

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2016, 12:33:14 PM »
But every few months I can't help but bring it up. ...I keep saying "if it weren't for me you would be foreclosing."

I read this and I think you need to just let the past be the past.  For the good of the family you need to look forward.  Counseling sounds like a good idea.

I sort of agree and don't agree.

I feel like you need to have an in depth talk about your plans which will include the things that happened in the past that are still having a financial impact. However once you have had this talk or gone through counseling you need to let go if you come to an agreement as far as what the two of you are planning financially. If you don't it is only going to build up resentment on both sides.

sleepyguy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2016, 12:33:25 PM »
I don't think either of your are right or wrong... just lack of communication and expectations going forward.

You are a "team" now... act as one.  Go have a talk so both of you are on the same page (probably should have done that before marriage but whatever.

stop bringing up past things and regrets, etc... it'll tear your relationship apart.  Talk, plan, agree, move forward.


Le Dérisoire

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2016, 12:42:29 PM »
My wife once told me that maybe she would like to be a sahm.

I said "sure, I would like to quit my job to be a sahd too. I would have time to study physics part time like I always wanted! That's so much better than working a boring job. Which one of us should do it then?"

I'm not a career person and neither is she. We both want to quit our job so it would be unfair that only one of us did. We agree on that. The solution is that we will make sure that we both quit at the same time soon enough. FIRE FTW.

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #18 on: April 08, 2016, 12:48:19 PM »
That is a long rambling story, but the basic I got was: "Pregnant wife loses job, has trouble paying the mortgage. Husband is mad he had to pay double payments for two months and now has to support his wife and child by working an OK job."

Is that fair? Because honestly, first my thought is, and forgive me because this is going to come off as very old school, but you are the goddamn husband. It is *your* job to pay the bills above and beyond everything else. If she wants to be a stay at home mom, you should support her. Honestly, its probably for the best considering her poor decision making.

Anyway, your story sort of fades and is somewhat contradictory. Is she a SAHM or is she looking for work? Why did she buy a house after you were married(or while you were engaged) unless it was a joint decision. Lots of other little things not adding up, as if we are only hearing part of the story.

I see a woman who is still making life decisions as if she were the only one affected, rather than understanding that she and her husband are now a team. And I see a husband who doesn't know how to talk to her about this.

humbleMouse

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #19 on: April 08, 2016, 12:56:44 PM »
I think you should chill out and support your wife and kid while the kid is young.  Get over your salty feelings and consider yourself luck you have the ABILITY to support your wife and kid.  Ignore that your wife made stupid job and financial decisions right out of college.

Then, maybe when your kid is 3 years old or something, be direct with your wife and lay out your financial numbers.  Tell her you want more income so the both of you can save money and become FI. 

One thing for sure:  get over yourself and shutup and support wife and kid.  If you didn't want to get somebody pregnant you shouldn't be ejaculating inside of women. 

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #20 on: April 08, 2016, 01:02:57 PM »
I think you should chill out and support your wife and kid while the kid is young.  Get over your salty feelings and consider yourself luck you have the ABILITY to support your wife and kid.  Ignore that your wife made stupid job and financial decisions right out of college.

Then, maybe when your kid is 3 years old or something, be direct with your wife and lay out your financial numbers.  Tell her you want more income so the both of you can save money and become FI. 

One thing for sure:  get over yourself and shutup and support wife and kid.  If you didn't want to get somebody pregnant you shouldn't be ejaculating inside of women.

Putting off this discussion till 3 years in I can only see as going disastrous. If you don't bring this up now 3 years down the line the changes will have been engrained already and that much harder to make changes. He absolutely needs to address these things before they have a kid not 3 years after.

Also he does not carry more responsibility for what the two of them did together.

GuitarStv

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #21 on: April 08, 2016, 01:09:51 PM »
There are a lot of people eager to adopt a child.  Throw out some feelers and see what kind of price your 1st born would fetch on the open market to offset the costs of housing.  Worst case scenario you manage to avoid all the costs of childcare.  If it's profitable enough, you might be able to make a lucrative side business while allowing your wife to remain unemployed.

rothnroll

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #22 on: April 08, 2016, 01:12:15 PM »
You can't be an industry expert with 1 year of full time experience.

Also, her being a SAHM is both your decision.
Geesh, good luck.

BFGirl

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #23 on: April 08, 2016, 01:12:48 PM »
Communication is a must!!!  Neither of you can read what the other one is thinking. 

mrshudson

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #24 on: April 08, 2016, 01:13:33 PM »
Not sure if this has been brought up before, but all the stuff you have described seem symptoms, and the underlying issue seems to be one of not fundamentally respecting your wife as an equal (e.g., you are judging her mom's choice of job as something unworthy, considering her pregnancy as your "fault" - and I'm not judging you, just noticing patterns jump out of your post). The two of you seem to value different things in life and the only way to reconcile is from within.

Not sure if anything people reply here can be useful. If you and your spouse are not good at introspection, might need professional help. Treat the disease, and not the symptoms.

KCM5

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #25 on: April 08, 2016, 01:20:10 PM »
There are a lot of people eager to adopt a child.  Throw out some feelers and see what kind of price your 1st born would fetch on the open market to offset the costs of housing.  Worst case scenario you manage to avoid all the costs of childcare.  If it's profitable enough, you might be able to make a lucrative side business while allowing your wife to remain unemployed.

I have a modest proposal: https://books.google.com/books/about/A_Modest_Proposal.html?id=eSBEAwAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button&hl=en#v=onepage&q&f=false

Apocalyptica602

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #26 on: April 08, 2016, 01:32:32 PM »
I disagree with those saying the mother has the right to stay home. You're a team, you made the baby together, you're both responsible for taking care of the family in whichever way you both agree on. (You SAHD while she works (after recovering from childbirth), Her SAHM while you work, Both work FT with FT Daycare, PT arrangements etc. SAHM and SAHD should be EQUALLY viable all else equal.

As others have said, communication is key. Mistakes were made here and while it's important to not dwell on them and keep bringing them up, it's worth understanding what happened and develop a plan to fix it. Do NOT continue to bring up 'If it weren't for me you'd be foreclosing', that sounds so toxic.

It sounds like your wife wanting to sue them means she at least understands fully that her 'dream job' was a sham there. If I were her I'd be embarrassed, angry, upset and likely try to get back into the job where I was making a similar income to you. You can't force her to do that, but you can outline expectations and develop shared goals (retire by X, pay off house by X) and have the plans in place to hit them (she goes back to work, you cut expenses by 30%, etc)

forummm

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #27 on: April 08, 2016, 01:36:10 PM »
I'm sorry you are finding yourself unhappy in life. Only seeing your side of the story, I can't be too helpful. But it's clear that you have a lot of resentment towards her and I am certain that this is not healthy for your relationship. You are not on the same page with her on a number of issues. It's better to have done this *before* getting married, but water under the bridge. I don't know how well you two communicate, but counseling may be a great idea. If you don't work through this somehow I foresee you both being miserable for a long time or no longer together (and perhaps still miserable). These seem to be pretty big issues and not the taking out the garbage or hanging up a towel kind that you can get by ignoring for too long. Good luck!

Picklemeister

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #28 on: April 08, 2016, 01:47:36 PM »
I definitely think it's fair to be upset in this situation, but I'm biased. I'm in a similar one with a husband who quit his steady job one month after we got married to pursue training for a different career (which he didn't complete) and has now been in a purely commission-based job for going on two years earning less than minimum wage. I have a stable, tolerable job that I am not a huge fan of. It's trying being the emotionally and financially stable one with no end in sight. There's been personal therapy and marriage counseling galore, the prior being very helpful and the latter being moderately so but still a work in progress.

Things that have been helpful to me:
  • Realizing I am choosing to keep this job I tolerate because I like the security it provides me. He isn't trapping me in this job.
  • He will never fulfill the deep need I have for security, and it's unfair to expect him to (but it is fair to expect him to fulfill some of my needs, some of the time).
  • That part of being emotionally an adult is being able to say to someone else "I need X, can we work together to figure out how to get/do it?

AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #29 on: April 08, 2016, 01:49:20 PM »
I'm kind of amazed at the number of people who think its OK for a man who gets his fiance/wife pregnant to demand that she immediately go back to work after having the baby and shirk his responsibility to provide for his family. I made sure my wife knew when she had our child that if she wanted to stay home, she could(and that going back to work was also totally OK).


wordnerd

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #30 on: April 08, 2016, 01:55:46 PM »
I can't address normalcy, but it sounds emotionally unhealthy.

Given that it seems you two haven't communicated well about finances, I would guess your wife has a different sense of "enough." Have you discussed early retirement with her? If not, she may think you're crazy for focusing on money when (if?) you're paying the bills. You two need to talk about your financial goals AND your emotions around money (everyone has them). How much saving do you need to feel comfortable? How much does she need? Is being a SAHM her dream, or is she waiting for the right opportunity to open up and go back to work eventually? Does she want to go part-time? Would that make you feel more comfortable financially and like she is contributing? Then, as a team, you need to figure out how to weigh what she wants vs. what you want.

This is all very hard work, and it won't happen unless you are both actively engaged. Given that there's already simmering (boiling?) tension on the issue, I think a martial counselor would be a great idea. My advice to you is to approach the situation with the assumption that your wife has good intentions but just sees the situation very differently than you do. Empathy will make this whole process go much more smoothly.

Good luck!

partgypsy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #31 on: April 08, 2016, 01:55:55 PM »
I'm kind of amazed at the number of people who think its OK for a man who gets his fiance/wife pregnant to demand that she immediately go back to work after having the baby and shirk his responsibility to provide for his family. I made sure my wife knew when she had our child that if she wanted to stay home, she could(and that going back to work was also totally OK).

I don't think there is a wrong or right way for the man to feel, other than they should have discussed employment decisions BEFORE bringing a baby in the mix. In general I feel those type of decisions should be joint.

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #32 on: April 08, 2016, 01:59:52 PM »
He did not get her pregnant, they got her pregnant. It takes two.

Also he is not more responsible to taking responsibility to provide for their family, though responsibility can be taken in multiple ways as I mentioned before.

If she wants to be a stay at home mom and this was not agreed upon before getting married then that is a decision they both need to make since it impacts them both and she can not expect to live at the same level of expenses at his expense if she wants to do this. The one that did it for me is expecting two vacations in a year after losing your job and deciding to be a SAHM. I might be interpreting this wrong but this does not show me she fully realizes the situation they are in. If she was willing to cut back to compensate for the reduction in income and work on cost saving measures using the free time she will have being a SAHM then I would say if the OP agrees to it, it can be fair enough. It is hard to know the whole situation of course only knowing part of half the the story, but saying shut up and do your duties is not the way to respond in my opinion given the little information we do have.

If they are expecting a child they both have a responsibility to have their financial life as stable as can be by that time. He does not have a one way responsibility to her, but they both do towards their baby.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 02:02:18 PM by prognastat »

asiljoy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #33 on: April 08, 2016, 02:03:41 PM »
Just sounds like you guys need to talk, perhaps with a counselor of some kind, to level set. You both seem to have unspoken expectations and it's creating unnecessary tension.

Marriage is a team sport. I don't think one spouse or the other is more responsible for providing the cash, but both do need to participate in the planning of how that cash is going to get raised, and how lives are going to be lived.

If you have a kid, this is by far the last time you guys are going to disagree on how things should be done. You guys need to learn to communicate effectively, like, yesterday.

AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #34 on: April 08, 2016, 02:07:55 PM »
Is the "you shouldn't be a SAHM" a younger generation thing? I'm not that old, am I?

I mean, legitimately like half the posters in this thread believe a man should be able to look at his wife and tell her she *has* to get a job after the baby is born? All other issues aside, and there are plenty, this just feels very wrong to me. No one is backing me up on this?

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #35 on: April 08, 2016, 02:10:53 PM »
Not quite, she doesn't "have" to, this is a joint decision. She doesn't "get" to either if they don't agree on it and this was not discussed before marrying.

It's a matter that a marriage is a partnership and decisions are not unilateral. One party does not get to make the decision that affects both. These kinds of things need to be discussed and come to an agreement on.

If the understanding at the time they got married was that she would be contributing financially, this is implied if she was working/attempting to work at this time and did not discuss otherwise, then once she would like to change this they have to agree on a new plan. Would it be fair if he decided he wants to go back to college to get a degree and put them thousands in debt to pursue a risky dream career if she did not agree to this first?
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 02:18:27 PM by prognastat »

loyalreader

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #36 on: April 08, 2016, 02:14:11 PM »
AZ Dude, flip it around. Would you say it's ok for him to tell his wife she *has* to be a SAHM after she has the kid? That's pretty 'old school'... and not in a good way. Certainly not a healthy relationship.

I think other posters have it right.


Miss Piggy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #37 on: April 08, 2016, 02:15:03 PM »
A few random thoughts:

- Can you move past the crappy job decision? You know it was a bad decision; deep down, she knows it was a bad decision; and she doesn't want to hear you say "I told you so" anymore. Besides, what's done is done.

- I agree with the others here about counseling. You two have a lot to talk through.

- I guess you assumed she'd continue working full-time after baby was born? Did you two not discuss it? (Again...counseling.)

- I can understand how you would feel like she pulled a "bait and switch" on you, given that it appears things weren't discussed.

- Does she want to work? Yes, but only part-time? Doing what? Or no, she really doesn't want to work?

- If she really wants to be a SAHM, how about making money at it by watching a few more kids?

End of random thoughts.


MrsDinero

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #38 on: April 08, 2016, 02:16:54 PM »
Is the "you shouldn't be a SAHM" a younger generation thing? I'm not that old, am I?

I mean, legitimately like half the posters in this thread believe a man should be able to look at his wife and tell her she *has* to get a job after the baby is born? All other issues aside, and there are plenty, this just feels very wrong to me. No one is backing me up on this?

I see the discussion more along the lines of it shouldn't have been a unilateral decision.  There are a lot of SAHM/SAHDs on these forums, with little to no problem. The problem lies in how the decision was made. 


AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #39 on: April 08, 2016, 02:18:47 PM »
If its a joint decision, then that means the man could tell her that she *has* to get a job. Clearly, these sorts of things should be talked about, but ultimately, if a woman wants to stay home with your baby and take care of it, you, as a man, should accept that wholeheartedly and provide for your family.

Quote
Would it be fair if he decided he wants to go back to college to get a degree and put them thousands in debt to pursue his dream career if she did not agree to this first?

Entirely different scenario since there is no child involved, but to answer your question, it would depend on the financial situation of the couple and the realistic career goals of the man.


SeanMC

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #40 on: April 08, 2016, 02:21:34 PM »
I agree with the counseling recommendation. You have a communication problem.

It sounds like she is deliberately hiding the truth with regards to money (not telling you about the roommate thing, paying a lot for a 'coach' service you did not know about). This is inexcusable when you have to be the same "team" working together! However, if your attitude is that she should fall over herself with gratitude that you keep her from bankruptcy and you come across as judgmental, then it might explain why she doesn't feel like she can tell you the truth.

You need a joint plan moving forward to raise your kid together.

AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #41 on: April 08, 2016, 02:23:52 PM »
AZ Dude, flip it around. Would you say it's ok for him to tell his wife she *has* to be a SAHM after she has the kid?

No, definitely not. In fact, nothing I have said would even suggest that I would be OK with that scenario. Flip it around and say Dad wants to scale back his work hours so he can spend more time with the LO(something I did myself at one point in time). In that situation, it would be wrong for the wife to say "No, you need to keep working as much as possible". That would be wrong.



sleepyguy

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #42 on: April 08, 2016, 02:25:00 PM »
Definite old school, although here in Canada we allow 1 yr parental leave JOINT between Parents.  Although the mother has to take the 1st 6 weeks of it, or something like that.

I think it's situation based as well... for example let's say.

I make $100k per yr
She makes $30k per yr

we have a kid... I would straight up say it is pointless for her to go back to work and just stay be SAHM until public school.  Why?  Daycare will eat up $20k+ per yr and also quality parenting time is missing.  Working a full yr for 'peanuts' is not worth it.

Now reverse it, it would be unacceptable for her to be a SAHM if she is by FAR the 'breadwinner' imho.

That said, the 1st 1-3yrs for a mom is TOUGH... so yes if finances weren't a HUGE priority, i would definitely take the financial burden without issue (and have).

Is the "you shouldn't be a SAHM" a younger generation thing? I'm not that old, am I?

I mean, legitimately like half the posters in this thread believe a man should be able to look at his wife and tell her she *has* to get a job after the baby is born? All other issues aside, and there are plenty, this just feels very wrong to me. No one is backing me up on this?

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #43 on: April 08, 2016, 02:25:08 PM »
If its a joint decision, then that means the man could tell her that she *has* to get a job. Clearly, these sorts of things should be talked about, but ultimately, if a woman wants to stay home with your baby and take care of it, you, as a man, should accept that wholeheartedly and provide for your family.

Quote
Would it be fair if he decided he wants to go back to college to get a degree and put them thousands in debt to pursue his dream career if she did not agree to this first?

Entirely different scenario since there is no child involved, but to answer your question, it would depend on the financial situation of the couple and the realistic career goals of the man.

And this is where I strongly disagree, in both situations the other spouse are choosing to be a financial burden and changing the plans that were expected when they got married. This is fine if both come to an agreement that works for both, but forcing someone in to a financial position that was not agreed upon is a form of abuse.

The bottom line is you are equals in marriage and this means both parties have equal input in the financial decisions that get made. As far as their situation they can either discuss it/go to counseling and come to an agreement or slowly watch as their marriage breaks apart due to mounting resentment on both sides, which will be no more in the child's interest.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 02:27:01 PM by prognastat »

AZDude

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #44 on: April 08, 2016, 02:27:44 PM »
So stay-at-home-moms are actually abusing their husbands?

Interesting... anyway, I have to get back to work, but thanks for the discussion.

gettingtoyes

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #45 on: April 08, 2016, 02:32:42 PM »
If its a joint decision, then that means the man could tell her that she *has* to get a job. Clearly, these sorts of things should be talked about, but ultimately, if a woman wants to stay home with your baby and take care of it, you, as a man, should accept that wholeheartedly and provide for your family.

Quote
Would it be fair if he decided he wants to go back to college to get a degree and put them thousands in debt to pursue his dream career if she did not agree to this first?

Entirely different scenario since there is no child involved, but to answer your question, it would depend on the financial situation of the couple and the realistic career goals of the man.

This sounds too much like the 1950s. Women are just as responsible as men are for providing for their family financially. Unfortunately, a huge block in this is that there is a serious gender gap between men and women for pay. Just because a couple has a child doesn't mean that the man is solely responsible for the financial livelihood of his family. They are both adults and equally responsible.

To the OP, demanding to be a princess of having a two income lifestyle while demanding to stay home is not okay. It's also not okay to refuse to admit your past mistakes. I suggest marriage counseling as others have said, but if it doesn't work out, be sure to remember this lesson for any future spouses.

Lanthiriel

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #46 on: April 08, 2016, 02:33:34 PM »
I am really shocked that there are so many people on here basically telling OP to "be a man" and suck it up to "provide for his family." Give me a minute to double-check the year.

OK, now that we've established that we're firmly in 2016, my advice would be having a serious reality check with your wife. A lot of people are advising marriage counseling, which I back 100%. Counseling saved my young marriage when my husband was having trouble completing his degree, and I was burning out working 2 jobs. The other form of counseling you might need is financial counseling. Your wife doesn't seem to have a grip on the lifestyle you can afford. If she won't listen to you, maybe you need to take your numbers to an (independent, hourly) financial professional and have them back you up. I'm not sure if your wife is someone who can be reasoned with.

Only you know if this is salvageable. I know that I couldn't put up with this level of selfishness, but we do only have one side of the story.

prognastat

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #47 on: April 08, 2016, 02:38:26 PM »
So stay-at-home-moms are actually abusing their husbands?

Interesting... anyway, I have to get back to work, but thanks for the discussion.

If she is forcing him to take on all the financial responsibilities against his will and prior agreement, forcing him to work to support their lifestyle prior to her losing her job and deciding to be a SAHM then yes.

The discussion is pretty limited without knowing exactly what their prior financial situation was before nor them having a discussion about what they both are expecting out of the marriage and knowing what exactly she is expecting as far as lifestyle adjustments if she became a SAHM. However as a general rule one party does not get to change the financial plan unilaterally and if they force this it is indeed a form of abuse.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 02:41:16 PM by prognastat »

dougules

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #48 on: April 08, 2016, 02:55:19 PM »
One more vote for a trip to a professional counselor.  I think you need somebody that can make her see how what she's doing is unfair... or help you see how you're being unfair given that we are only hearing one side of the story. 

Oh, and I've got a question for all y'all smart folks out there.  Between my sister-in-law and her wife, which one should I tell to stand up and be the breadwinner, and which one should I tell to stay home to clean the house and raise the kid?

MrsDinero

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Re: Should I be upset with my spouse or is this normal?
« Reply #49 on: April 08, 2016, 02:56:36 PM »
One more vote for a trip to a professional counselor.  I think you need somebody that can make her see how what she's doing is unfair... or help you see how you're being unfair given that we are only hearing one side of the story. 

Oh, and I've got a question for all y'all smart folks out there.  Between my sister-in-law and her wife, which one should I tell to stand up and be the breadwinner, and which one should I tell to stay home to clean the house and raise the kid?
You shouldn't tell them anything.  They should discuss and decide on their own.

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