(Closed) Husband wants to join the Peace Corps but i dont….any advice would help…

posted 5 years ago in Relationships
Post # 16
362 posts
Helper bee

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Yikes yike yikes.

That’s a toughie. Not married, but my S/O is in the Marine Corps and that’s obviously a big constraint on our lives in certain ways… but it also fulfills him in ways I worry no “regular” job will be able to when he gets out in 2 years, so we have had the “What if I went career?” discussion because while I want him to be happy, he also wants ME to be happy to and understands that it would likely mean us moving to another country, me leaving my family, the place where I grew up, etc., so I can certainly understand your conflict.

Regardless of what happens, though, it’s a conversation we’re having together.

Making him happy while making YOU miserable will only get your relationship right back to where it is now, so I agree with other PP’s that it sounds like he’s having a romanticized, mid-life crisis of some kind and that taking a step back to really talk about things and discuss alternative solutions is what’s best. Be open to compromise, of course, but also be VERY clear with him that you LOVE your job and living in New York so he’s 100% clear on how much he’s asking of you.

Remembering that you 2 are a packaged deal might bring him back down to earth a little.

Post # 17
2019 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

PC is pretty strict on their reqirements so maybe you’ll get lucky and he won’t be a candidate. FSO position would be pretty prestigious and you would get to experience a lot of interesting places. You can do HR work pretty much anywhere. If it’s the work you love, fear not! You’ll find more 🙂 If it’s the specific office then that’s a bummer.

Post # 18
774 posts
Busy bee

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Speck_:  Voluntourism is bullshit, the peace corp is a dangerous place for women,

Whoa….what?? There are just so many things wrong with this, but you seem like someone not inclined to listen to reason so I won’t bother. But OP, please don’t listen to this crap. 

You and your husband are both in your 20s so are still young. Life changes are to be expected. You will not be in that same apartment, in that same job, forever. You have to learn now how to support each other’s dreams with a mutual understanding. What happens if you lose your job at some point and your next dream position is in a different city? What if he isn’t ready to move then? Would it be okay for him to just shut you down and say “now isn’t the time for this – you should have thought of this in college!”? (Not saying this is your approach, but this seems to be the attitude that so many PP recommend you to have.) 

Try to just be supportive of him finding his outlet right now. The PC application process is lengthy, and the Foreign service exam is a lengthy process post-exam. You have time to talk and allow him to start pursuing different avenues before committing to anything. When he thinks of what the reality of these look like, he may change his mind too.

Post # 19
4697 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

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katherin788:  What about AmeriCorps? It may not be as exciting as traveling/working in another country, but if he wants to serve, that might an option – there are probably programs in NY even. I taught at an underprivileged school through AmeriCorps VISTA and loved it.

Post # 20
766 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Peace Corps is a huge commitment, 27 months. I am a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) and incidentally met my now husband during my service. He was a volunteer in my country of service as well. I’ve seen married couples go through it together and come out stronger on the other side and I’ve seen relationships fail, usually one person really wants to do it and the partner along for the ride. 

In terms of Peace Corps being voluntourism…your service is what you make it. You can spend your 27 months bsing and hiding in your house reading or you can get out there and plant trees, teach english, create toolkits for HIV/AIDS education, and become a member of your community. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done…literal blood, sweat, and tears…not to mention a lot of shit went into it. 

This is something y’all really need to talk about. You both have to be passionate about it. The process is long and tedious. I’ve heard that it’s gotten better than when I applied in 2005 but have yet to test that out. 

Post # 23
406 posts
Helper bee

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katherin788: First off, Bee, I’m so sorry you’re going through this. A rift in dreams and visions is hard within a marriage. I’ve to watch how much of a struggle it is for my parents; my mum wants nothing more than work in humanitarian aid, and my father wants nothing less. I’ve watched her pain for years and years, and she’s still so incredibly heartbroken she cannot follow through in what she truly feels called to do because she and her husband are not on the same page.

Whatever happens, one of you will be compromising. One of you will be mourning. One of you will need to learn to love the other through loss of their dreams.

Full disclosure, I worked in humanitarian aid for three and a half years, and only returned to the States to receive my certification in counseling so I can go back out and be more effective. I’ve committed my life to this sort of stuff because I believe it’s so incredibly worth it. Living beyond myself has given me so much life. But it’s not for everyone. Sometimes, people are meant to make small differences where they are.

It’s hard. This wasn’t on the cards when you two got married. Let me ask you though: would you have still married him if it was? Consider your answer to that.

Be open with your Fiance, let me know your feelings, but also reassure him you still love him. All the best, lovely, I hope you find a solution.

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