Post # 16
I think getting over these age-old expectations will just take time, maybe more time than you have. These ideas were passed down through generations for hundreds/thousands of years and even though society has evolved in the last thirty years, he will feel the pressure for a while. 30 years is wayyyy less than 2,000. At least he’s acknowledging it’s illogical, that’s a good sign. I think on that front, just be supportive of him, I can’t imagine the stress these stupid expectations put on guys. Even though many women work and are educated and financially independent, there are still a lot of expectations on men.
Also, congrats on the side gig. Do you own your own business?
As far as the finances go, you mentioned you split many things 50/50 but he handles a majority of the “fun money” – might it make him feel better if he handled a larger portion of the necessities and you pick up some of the other stuff? How much of the living expenses could he reasonably handle? Maybe do like 60/40 or whatever on the rent, etc. and you pay for date nights? I know that doesn’t solve whatever you can afford from the side job that he can’t, but maybe it will help?
FWIW I think it’s really sweet that he wants to step up and be a provider. Not that you need one at all, but it’s nice that he wants to. I would be financially comfortable just the same without my boyfriend, but it is nice that he provides in other ways.
However it works out, it sounds like you guys have a good relationship. Congrats. And fuck yeah for owning your own house.
ETA just saw your update. Housework, childcare, etc. are definitely worth something. I would shop around with him to see what these things would cost if you hired someone else to do them. Put a number on it and add that to his “tally” if he needs to feel like he’s providing.
Also, I wish some of the women here wouldn’t blame your husband for wanting to provide for you and your family. He would be getting shit if he bailed on the kids, cheated on you, or didn’t work at all, so how is he still being attacked when he’s doing what is expected of him?
Post # 17
What exactly is nasty about advising the OP to not baby her husband who complains that she brings home more money even though she works at least part time on a side business on top of her full time job?
Post # 18
I totally agree! If the roles were reversed I would also feel bad about it.
I’ll also add DH is a veteran so we will be using his VA loan for our next house which is a HUGE help!
Post # 19
If your husband is a veteran, it means he’s already given a lot more than most people are willing to give. He deserves respect for that alone, and for doing the right thing. Stepping up for his country and his family is a very traditional and I think admirable thing to do, and there is nothing wrong with it. I would rather be with a veteran with a male ego than a deadbeat or wife beater.
Between his previous service and taking care of the kids and housework so you can work on top of your day job, he does contribute. As PP mentioned, he is providing you non-monetary support for you.
If he was genuinely threatened by your ambition and independence, he would have run when he found out you owned a house as a single woman. It’s a lot easier for chauvinists to prey on women who can’t take care of themselves than it is for them to kick a woman who’s climbing a ladder – if he wanted a weak woman, he would have one. To me it sounds like him seeing you work so hard is pushing him to work hard too, that’s good. It sounds like he recognizes all you do for the family and he wants to pull his weight. Kudos to both of you.
Post # 20
skunktastic : I understand wanting to contribute equally regardless of gender, but in the end if that’s important to you, then you either have to make it happen or adjust your thinking on what counts as contributing.
When I finished grad school and moved in with my SO, I paid half towards rent and utilities even though I didn’t have a permenant job lined up. I took on a temporary job for which I was overqualified in order to have that income to contribute. When I ended up being unemployed longer than anticipated, I paid for my half out of my savings. That was rather demoralizing, but for me it was better than having my SO pay my way. And even if he had needed to pay more because I couldn’t make it work, I wouldn’t have added to his load by complaining about how him paying more makes me feel bad.
So I agree that OP has done what she can to show her appreciation for his other contributions, but beyond that he really should work it out himself and stop bringing it up. If it’s important to him to provide equal financial contributions, then he needs to start thinking longer term on how he will contribute to joint assets and/or how he could increase his income to contribute more. If he can’t earn more, then he’ll need to learn to accept the value of his non-monetary contributions. Either way it’s on him; OP shouldn’t have to shoulder his unchecked and self-imposed guilt.
Post # 21
Youve interpreted this spot on! Hes very hard working and giving and absolutely does his part. He supports me 100%. I recently decided to go back to school to improve my earning potential in hopes of eventually losing the side hustle and hes been 100% on board. Im very type A/strong willed and he loves me for me. I think he just feels a little inadequate since he doesnt calculate the full picture of his contributions when he is only looking at dollars on paper.
Post # 22
but he IS contributing. He’s just focusing on the financial aspect. His service qualifies them for a VA loan and he picks up the slack and does housework so OP can focus on her side business. Personally if given the option between my husband making more money and doing more shit around the house I would take do more shit around the house in a heartbeat. Money isn’t everything.
Post # 23
Yeah I think unfortunately it’s just a mindset thing.
I think the best chance of helping him feel better is to put things in a different light. If he considers finances the strongest contribution, put numbers on things so he can see what he contributes. It sounds like his love language may be Service, so work around that. I think he’s just trying to be a good husband the best way he knows how. If providing makes him feel good and it’s not harmful to your relationship, I don’t think it can hurt to help him work through this gently. It’s just a mindset shift. Just speak his language and keep communicating how much you appreciate him and how helpful he IS being. Time equals money, so all the time he puts into the home so you can work a second job, SAVES you money.
Congrats on going back to school, too.
Post # 24
- Wedding: October 2016 - Wedgewood Las Vegas
Agreed wholeheartedly. I don’t understand that when it comes to women we tell them that you’re entitled to your feelings, etc, but when it comes to men the advice is often ‘STFU’. I thought being in a relationship meant we are supposed to emotionally support one another.
Post # 25
There is a difference between emotionally supporting your partner and having to constantly reassure them.
OP has already been extremely kind and supportive of her husband… repeatedly so. At this point, he knows how she feels— like he is a great partner who contributes well to their marriage, life, and finances.
If he is STILL struggling with it and knows he shouldn’t be, this has become something that he needs to seriously work on within himself, perhaps with the help of a professional. If OP hasn’t been able to make a dent in his feelings of insufficiency by what she’s already done, it’s clear that she can’t fix this for him.
Post # 26
It sounds like he picks up a lot of emotional labour which is amazing. One of the things DH and I do is every month or so is to outline everything (including simple things like plan out a grocery list or figure out when our son will need new clothes) so we can see where and if anything needs to be re-balanced. Making a list of everything might help your hubby see that when he loads the dishwasher so you can do your side gig and if he got paid for that it would be x amount of dollars.
Post # 27
My fiancé pays for stuff out in public (movies, dinner etc) and I pay for groceries etc at the house. I pay more but he feels good about paying where he might be judged socially.
I don’t ego stroke but I don’t mind finding a solution that makes him happy if it all shakes out even in the end.
Post # 28
I think this is something you may want to dig further into. I totally understand his need to be an equal partner and provider and that is very sweet, however, equal does not always mean everything has to be 50/50.I would be concerned that he was keeping score and expected everything to be 50/50. What if your earning potential increases significantly in the future, and you were earning twice what he makes? Would he be able to be supportive of your career and happy for you without his ego being hurt? What if the situation was reversed and you had to stop working for some reason? Would be be ok with shouldering a higher percent of the financial responsibilities?
I would make sure his expectations long-term were reasonable. You have no idea what the future holds and I would not want to have this issue popping up every time either of you gets a promotion. You may have separate accounts, but need to start thinking about it as both of your money, and he needs to realize there is more to an equal partnership than how much he makes.
Post # 29
I totally understand where he is coming from. My biggest fear/insecurity is that others consider me a nuisance. We have been talking about potentially moving to my boyfriend house (yes bf and husband are not necessarily comparable). I’m already wondering all types of arrangements we should make so I’m contributing enough. Unless he has specifically said that he needs to pay because he is a man then I don’t understand why his feelings are not valid. If he says “I’m a man therefore I should pay for everything for my little lady” then that’s a whole issue. I can understand not feeling home in a place that you don’t own or are not contributing towards.
Could he be saving a lot of money to an account that could.be his contribution towards the new house? Paying more than 50% of utilities? Contributing towards mortgage or renovations? Paying “rent?
Post # 30
I hear you. He had two ex’s who were financially irresponsible and relied on him for everything. His daughters mother was raised that a woman should not work and a man should provide – but hes always been working class and where we live thats not realistic. I think hes always enjoyed that Im not like that but it also is weird for him based on past experiences.
Unfortunately he is maxed out with his income and expenses. He has a modest amount transfered to savings each month (I actually talked him into increasing that when we were dating), and the rest goes to bills. Hes pretty thrifty so while he could maybe skip something here or there he is not the type to waste a lot of money.