Does Your Husband Complain That You Don't Contribute Enough?

Updated on April 14, 2017
M.T. asks from Ashburn, VA
26 answers

Hi guys! I'm new here. I just recently came across this site after reading a question by another mom https://www.mamapedia.com/questions/2519053693429612545

I'm in a similar situation in that my husband at times makes side comments about how he's making the money and working hard... and I'm not. Once last month he said plainly that I wasn't really contributing much. Comments like those are not very frequent but they are hurtful. I read an article a few minutes ago about how sometimes couples have different perspectives about work - one might see work for more of the intrinsic value and the other sees it as a means to acquiring status. I think that describes us - I'm more of the former.
A little more background:
- I'm a mom
- I work fulltime as a teacher
- He doesn't think going into teaching was a smart move financially. (I was a teacher long before we met)
- Combined we make over 140k (me 60k, him 80k)
- We don't have non-mortgage debt and we're not living pay check to pay check
- I'm not a big spender
- He does help around the house which I appreciate
- He's starting a side business and wants to one day be rich... like multi-millionaire RICH (think Shark Tank success not lottery winner).
- We live in a rural area (45mins outside of Ashburn) and I love the slower pace out here. I love spending time focused on family, church, and school. I'm content here.
I love teaching and at the same time I work hard to work efficiently so that I get my work done within my school hours so that I can preserve afterschool hours/weekends/holidays/summer vacation for family time. He acts like that's being lazy and that I should be working an additional part-time job or creating a side business during my "time off". I decided that's not a lifestyle choice that I want to make. I know it's not very submissive but I just told him that being a mom and a teacher is enough on my plate...period. (Growing up, his mom did everything around the house AND worked a full time job as a nurse AND had a thriving side business while his dad was away from home alot due to business travel).
I know that every couple has disagreements. I guess I'm just looking for support. He is adamently against marriage counseling.

What can I do next?

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So What Happened?

Thanks to everyone for taking the time to respond to my question. I love hearing everyone's different perspective.
Here's what I've decided is right for me:
1. Stay true to myself: I'm going to continue teaching fulltime, spending the remainder of my time focused on family, and spending conservatively. These our boundaries that are important to me. Whenever one sticks to a boundary, others might balk/be dismayed...I will hold my ground.
2. Be supportive of his ambition: Although I won't be focusing on being an entrepeneur or going into additional part-time work, I will encourage him to continue down that path since that is his passion.
3. Focus on my own actions and words: The only person I can control is myself. I will do my part, that way, no matter my marital status, I can be proud of my words/actions.

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C.N.

answers from Baton Rouge on

You have a job. You take care of the family. No one is going without anything they need. You're doing enough. He apparently likes working two jobs. You don't want to. Neither of you is wrong for that preference.
I've worked two and sometimes three jobs at once. It's no fun and I was too exhausted to enjoy the little bit of time I had off.

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D.B.

answers from Boston on

The best thing you can do for yourself is to google "how much does it take to replace a mom?"

These are surveys usually based on stay-at-home moms, so you'd have to adjust for your salary. But the last one I saw (a few years old) showed that SAHMs work an average of 96 hours per week, and would require well over $100K to replace chauffeur/taxi, menu planner & cook, personal shopper (for family and all his relatives...), personal care attendant to bathe the kids, seamstress, bookkeeper/accountant, homework tutor, party planner, home decorator, home hairdresser, gardener, and so on. And no, there's no estimate for sex worker! You can also insist that you increase life insurance coverage on you, because if anything happens, it's going to cost 6 figures to replace you, and that's without the emotional needs you meet.

So a list of tasks and the hours per week are helpful - then divide by 2 and ask your husband which half he wants to take. I'd also take a weekend away with a sister or college roommate, without the cell phone charger and without pre-shopping and preparing meals or leaving notes about where the dog food and the diapers are. You know? Just assume he's perfectly capable of functioning just as you do. When you come back and he complains about how hard it was, you just smile and say, "Yes, it is hard. Aren't you glad I do so much of that? No wonder I'm tired." The point is, if it's so damn easy in his mind, then he should be able to do it and show you just how simple it is.

I wouldn't take that kind of talk from my husband for a minute. Don't let it hurt - let it motivate you.

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J.K.

answers from Wausau on

We've been married for almost 19 years. In that time I've been the higher earner, I've been a SAHM with zero income, a part-time job holder, and a WAHM. My husband has created a career, had his income rise, and when times were tight he took a temporary part-time job in addition to his full-time job.

We have a division of household/family labor that is partly circumstantial based on who can better handle a task in terms of time or skill, and partly decisions based on who hates a particular chore less. He has been a very involved father since our first child was born.

He has never once so much as hinted that he thought I may not be doing enough. Likewise, I've never said or alluded that idea about him.

The situation you outline isn't really about money or who does what. That's just how it is manifesting. The core issue is a basic lack of respect shown by your husband. He isn't speaking to you as one who cherishes his wife. You also have a divergence of life goals and expectations. These are not typical minor disagreements between a couple, but issues that can grow into a huge problem if unchecked. If you can get him to agree to see a marriage counselor with you, I think that would be a good idea. You two have a lot of good to work with, so getting back on the same page will help a lot.

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S.W.

answers from Detroit on

Hi M.,

With all due respect, if my husband even intimated that I wasn't contributing enough he would yank back a stump. People think that marriage is 50/50 but it's not....it's 100/100. To us this means that you are a team with your spouse and that each of you contribute 100% of what you can and the collaboration results in everyone getting their needs and most of their wants met. My husband is my best friend and if he crossed a boundary like this with me, purposely or by accident, I would absolutely sit him down and have a conversation with him about how hurtful this is and seek a solution with him that does not include you reorienting your life to meet his ambitions. Finally, if you can't do that with him then perhaps some counseling might be in order so that you can be honest and transparent with him about his behavior and the consequences.

I wish you best of all. :-) S.

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J.C.

answers from Philadelphia on

I'm a stay at home mom and my oldest is away at colllege and my baby is in 8th grade. Sometimes I feel as though I should contribute financially but my husband does not care if I bring home a paycheck or not. He is content and sees the value in me doing the shopping, cleaning, cooking, his dry cleaning etc. Having said that, I have a lot of free time to do as I please. I exercise daily and go out to lunch or coffee with friends several times a week. I also have a lot of time to dedicate to my hobby. My husband has never said anything like that to me. I am really sorry your husband feels this way. I am wondering if he needs to help out a lot more around the house? You already have a FT job. Quite honestly I am floored by his comments.

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S.B.

answers from Houston on

Submissive? If we are going into that type of talk and relationship, then he is a failure because he should be able to support his family without the wife working.

In addition, he is only making $20,000 more than you. That really isn't that much for him to be complaining about your lack of contributions. It really sounds like you both are pretty even in the contribution category.

No, my husband has never said anything like that. when I was a SAHM, he would always refer to the money as our money. He did like to come home after being out of town and start bossing everyone around. I did tell him one time that I did NOT work for him and if I did, he couldn't afford me!!!

I work now. In salary, I make more than him. However, he is in sales and his bonuses can be very good which puts him over me.

I would have a very calm discussion with him. I would explain that I didn't like that comment and what does he base it on? Since you don't want to start a business on your "free time", (okay I'm too busy laughing at that) does he think you are lazy and that is what he means about "lack of contribution". I think you need to understand exactly what he means and nip it. This can cause future discourse in your marriage.

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B.C.

answers from Norfolk on

If he's ambitious - HE needs to put in the work to feed his ambitions.
You do plenty and are satisfied with your life and goals.
You work hard - and you earn your time off - to enjoy living your life.
It's a quality of life thing - and he should recognize that.
He's driven - and that's fine - but he shouldn't be trying to drive you.

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J.C.

answers from Anchorage on

This would be difficult for me to deal with. I am like you, money is not important, happiness is. I want to work to live, not live to work. My family is important and they deserve as much time as I can give them, I know I will never be on my death bed wishing I had made more money and spent less time with my kids because money and material things are just not important. When we do have extra money we prefer to use it for family memories by traveling or seeing a show together. We live simply and love hard and that is what makes us happy. Luckily for me my husband is the same way. While he does have a desire to earn status and respect in his career field, and he is always happy about a raise or a bonus, his time with us is always given priority over extra earnings. I would have a very direct talk with your husband about your priorities and that, while you will support him while he does what he feels he needs to do for his happiness, he needs to respect that a simple life is where you find your happiness.

Blessed Be

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J.S.

answers from St. Louis on

I have an amazing husband and from time to time I am known to walk screaming though the house I AM NOT A HOUSEWIFE!! He usually isn't home at the time and my kids fine it funny. I also speak with slight anger at work, I am not your secretary! My officemate laughs, her husband is awful so it makes her feel better when I lose my sh!t.

My point is even the best men fall into this trap. I sometimes think it comes from how they saw their mom's relationship with their father which makes your observation about his mom very relevant.

Anyway, it seems normal and your husband sounds like a good one. I usually make jokes about it so I don't completely lose it. There is no basis in reality for most of the comments. So I am saying find the humor in his lack of observational skills and if a specific comment really gets under your skin calmly explain why you are unhappy with the comment.

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D.P.

answers from Pittsburgh on

I'm sorry you are going through this. I can't say I've had this problem. I know that if my husband said I wasn't contributing to the household? I would tell him to take over while I go on vacation.

You are partners. I don't know where submission comes from. There are times I am submissive and times HE is submissive. It all washes out in the end. We realize we are partners and in this together.

I think you both have totally different priorities. He's money focused and you are family focused. Can this be worked out? Yes. But it requires compromise and two adults willing to work on it together.

I wish you luck. Strongly suggest marriage counseling so you two can learn how to communicate and compromise.

He really needs to see what you bring to the partnership. And right now? he doesn't. You seem passive and want to make him happy. You are not his welcome mat. Nor is he yours.

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R..

answers from San Antonio on

I am a SAHM...my husband does realize all I do and I realize all I don't do...the kids are my priority during most of the day so volunteering at their school, then doing after school activities. Planning and making meals, lunches for kids and dinners for all. Super scrubbing the house top to bottom isn't on the list for me...so last weekend he cleaned the windows...we are hosting Easter and they were bugging him. I was taking the kids to the three hour long martial arts seminar and then our son to a violin lesson and then came home got ready to go to a huge fundraiser/cocktail thing for his work where I visited with all the people in his industry and current employers. Which was working harder? Washing windows or running kids all day...now some people would say if I am at home I should have already washed those windows. Why? They were not bothering me and I don't think our Easter guests would even notice them...but they were bothering him and he didn't tell me they were, so he fixed it...

Last year, I went back to work full time to teach for a semester while a teacher was out on sick leave. He hated it and my kids hated it...I liked it as I as now a contributing member of the monetary side of our marriage. Plus working outside the home was fulfilling. I started looking for a full time position for the fall and no one was excited about it but me. So, I stopped looking.

My husband doesn't want to get rich just be comfortable and have retirement in place. He leaves me in charge as CFO to make these things happen with our money.

Last week I heard the I work while you don't thing in the heat of an argument but it wasn't what the argument was about...it was about who is working harder right NOW as he is pulling late nights and well sense kids I really pull all nights as they still will occasionally wake me up if they are sick or scared or can't sleep. But he was stressed and over tired and really just needed to eat and go to bed...not be visiting/arguing with me.

If I were working full time and keeping up with the kids and there was only a 20K difference in our salaries and my husband was being the way yours is...I couldn't live like that. A side business??? on top of full time teaching?? and kids??

Sounds like your financial goals are very different. Maybe a third independent party like a therapist could visit with you both and offer solutions. I can't think of one that will make you both happy. Good luck!!

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M.D.

answers from Pittsburgh on

You and your husband have very different life priorities. Have you ever had a non-confrontational conversation about this? Can you make plans to go out to dinner one night and talk about your future? What do you see as your future? What does he see? Can you make those goals mesh?

It is perfectly OK (more than ok) to envision a future that focuses on family, church, and your local community, and set your priority to make that happen which would mostly focus on participating in things locally to build the community of people that you will spend time with in the coming years.

It is also perfectly OK to envision a future that involves having the resources to travel the world, which would involve giving priority to doing things that build wealth so that you have the resources to travel.

But if you and your husband have such different visions of your future, you need to figure out if there is a way to make those mesh. It's not ok for either of you to force a vision on the other. You may need marriage counselling to figure out a way forward if you and your husband can't discuss this as equal partners.

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W.W.

answers from Washington DC on

ETA: If he's against marriage counseling? I would say "good luck on your own!" he's not willing to work on the marriage. He wants what he wants and that's it. Kudos for his mom being able to do it all. You're NOT his mom. You're his WIFE. He needs to learn that distinction!

Welcome to mamapedia.

Ashburn is NOT a rural area. It's an EXPENSIVE area in Loudoun County, VA. Unless you live by Aldie/Middleburg, then it's rural. But Ashburn? No.

My husband gave me grief ONCE about being a SAHM. Then he was laid off and saw all I did. then I got a job where I worked from home. The first few months were hard as he and others said - well - YOU ARE AT HOME...um yeah I am and I'm WORKING. Dah.

You need to ask your husband exactly what he wants from you. If he's all about money and you aren't? You might need to find a way to compromise.

Maybe you can go to marriage counseling and find a way that works for both of you. He needs to see that you are NOT lazy. I know how pissed I was when my husband said "all you do is sit on the couch, watch TV and eat bon-bons" I could've killed him. I called his mom and told her what he said - she said "let me talk to him". He came back in and apologized, but later, he saw first hand what I did to contribute to the family and he has NEVER said boo again.

Tell your husband to walk in your shoes for a week. Then he'll change his tune.

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D..

answers from Miami on

Well, if he is against marriage counseling, you have to get tough with him. Next time he starts this stuff, you tell him that he can move out if he doesn't like your full time job. Say it to him EVERY TIME he starts this. And don't do ANYTHING he tries to push you into doing while he's acting like this. Dig in your heels and walk away from him.

You might not like this advice, but you need to say it anyway. He thinks that he can bully you into working your petutie off for him. You don't have to. And you had better not try. Stand up for yourself. Period.

NOTHING you do will help. You will NEVER come up to his mother's standards in his eyes. He thinks his mother walked on water and you will never be close to her standards in his mind.

You need to open up your own bank account and put your salary in it. His side business that he wants to become rich on? He'll use YOUR money to pour into it and if he's unsuccessful, you won't have the money AND he'll be fighting you more and more to go out and get another job.

Go talk to a divorce lawyer and learn what you need to do to protect your finances. DO NOT pay all the family expenses so that he can use his salary for his side business. You don't have to finance his dream.

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V.B.

answers from Jacksonville on

Once again, Diane B nailed it.

I became a SAHM mom about 1 month before the birth of our first child. He graduated high school last May, did a semester at college, decided he'd rather DO something now besides school, and leaves for boot camp in a few weeks. I rejoined the work force (part-time--4 days a week, 6hr days) last fall when he was going to college. We have another child who is a sophomore in high school now. Never in all of those 18 years did my husband tell me I didn't contribute enough. That's not to say I didn't go through periods where I didn't keep the house as well as we'd both have liked. But, even when I wasn't working, he asked me if we should get someone to come in a few times a month to do the deep cleaning stuff. (I declined.)

I don't know that work value is as cut and dried as you present it with your either-or choices of "intrinsic value" or "acquiring status." It can be both, and it can be other things as well. Obviously, teaching, there is not dollar value that can adequately be placed on what you do. But, does that mean that it doesn't help you financially? Of course not. Just because husband has a well paying career, likewise, doesn't mean that getting the bills paid is all it's about.
If you enjoy what you do, or even if you don't, you can reap the rewards of feeling as if you are contributing- To your family, your future, your neighbor, your community. And in different ways. Yes, you can even contribute to your own peace of mind and sense of worth.

The problem here isn't that your husband values your teaching career differently than you do. It's that he undervalues all you do outside of teaching, and thinks he isn't responsible for anything but making money (that last bit is a guess, but I'm betting as Diane B suggested that you are the one who manages the entirety of the household business at home... the kids, the pets, the payments, the doctors, the dentists, the groceries, the laundry, the dinner plans and clean-up, the Christmas decorating, holiday/birthday gift shopping, the taxes even...?).

As I mentioned, I just returned to working outside the home. It's only 20-25 hours a week (average). But I have always managed everything at home to relieve my husband of having to deal with the "home front" stuff while he was working outside the home providing for us. The bill paying, the grocery shopping, the clothing shopping, the shoe shopping, the doctors, the dentists, the vet, the orthodontist, the practices, the concerts, the rehearsals, the "team mom" stuff, the chaperoning/field trip stuff, the hosting of friends stuff, the meal planning (most of it), the tax prep, the car maintenance scheduling, the termite inspection, you get the picture. He mowed the grass. The end. So now, I still do all that, but I work outside the home another set of hours. I also just took on a volunteer role at our church that is eating a lot more time than I had anticipated, and husband has suggested I advise now that I won't be doing it again next year, so they can find someone else... b/c he knows it takes way more time than I have to spend on it without running ragged elsewhere--and that elsewhere includes HIM. He likes having me available to do things on his days off, and not stressed about this other thing I'm doing. My work, I mostly leave at work. It doesn't stress me at home. I leave work at work. But the Treasurer stuff is an ongoing, at home, after hours thing that interferes with our weekends on a regular basis.

But, my husband doesn't suggest (or outright TELL me) that I'm not contributing enough... he supports me and suggests I find ways to make things easier on myself. He gladly helps with meal prep, or says let's go out. He helps with laundry. He will help with chauffeur duty (when his work schedule allows).

I used to think and say that we are a partnership. But I'm not sure that's an accurate depiction really. He supports me. Emotionally, financially, spiritually. He wants things to be better for me (whatever better looks like for us). When I felt bored at home as the kids got older, and eventually they didn't need me except after school hours as a chauffeur, he said, Hey, why not volunteer somewhere? Not b/c he thought I wasn't contributing, but b/c he recognized that I felt wasteful in how my time was being spent, and useless for a good part of the day. I needed something useful to do. But I felt like a volunteer situation would cost us money (we live a good drive from anywhere, so lots of gas to commit to go to and from), and I was actively trying to save so we could afford a vehicle for our daughter soon. So, I found paid work, and he told me how amazing I was and how lucky they were to have me work there.

There is still a lot he takes for granted, that I do and have always done. Household paperwork especially. He knows he wants no part of it. But b/c he has been mostly sheltered from it, he has no REAL appreciation for how much/what goes on to balance it all. I let him take the lead in having a well installed last fall. It dragged on forever and he almost lost it dealing with the people. That was almost fun to watch. ;)

Sorry to write a book... but Diane has this right. Go away and don't pre-plan, prepare, pre-anything for him. Go when the groceries haven't been stocked, and the toilet paper on the roll is almost empty (bc no man knows where the extra rolls are!), and the paper towels are almost gone. Let him figure out how to clean the coffee pot (and make it). Just don't set yourself up to come home to a mess that YOU then have to deal with.

Good luck. Don't let him tell you that you aren't contributing enough. He just has no idea how much you DO contribute. He's happy and fed, right? Your kids are clean, rested, healthy, and in school on time, right? He has clean clothes to wear to work, right? Is he filling your gas tank in your car when it's empty? Why not? What's HE doing to contribute to the home (outside of making money)?

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N.B.

answers from Oklahoma City on

Sit down with him and have a talk. Research this and be prepared.

**********

Okay honey, I've been thinking about what you said about me not having enough to do.
So here's my idea (Anything you think would be at all interesting because it has to be believable to him).

I'll need to deplete the savings account to rent this place or to buy this stuff to get started.

Then we'll need to hire a housekeeper because, well, let's face it, you don't like house work and I won't be here to do it.

Then we'll have to put the kids in after school child care and you'll have to pick them up each day because I'm going to be working my second job. You can feed them whatever. I'll eat out because you know, I'll be working and can't come home to cook.

Then on the weekends you can watch the kids, right? Or do we need to hire a nanny for that since you aren't able to watch them efficiently?

You might want to think about all their activities too. Take lots of photos so that I can enjoy their childhood.

You know what honey? I think I'm liking this idea a LOT! I won't have to clean house or cook or do laundry or argue with the kids about homework or anything, cause I won't be here.

Thank you for helping me see the light, I can have a LOT more of a life than just being a full time employee and a mom. I love you. See you probably on next Thursday, I'm going to be really busy until then.

*************************

Go work a second job for a short time and make sure it's the most disruptive hours to family time. Plan it so that he's the MAJOR person that has to do all the work. Push it off on him so he can see maybe what his dad had to do while his mom worked all those hours.

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M.S.

answers from Washington DC on

Wives are not supposed to be submissive. Dogs are. You are an equal partner.

Around here, you guys would be making a very comfortable living. Not sure about your cost of living? Please stick to your beliefs and make time for family. When you are 90 yrs old are you going to say I wish I would have spent my free time working more or will you say I wish I would have spent every free minute with those I love?

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H.W.

answers from Portland on

Working in education is a wonderful, meaningful choice. It has loads of value, and only part of that is monetary.

Who would teach your own family's children if it weren't for people like you, who have decided to devote their lives to others and the collective betterment of our children and our country's future?

Tell him you are paying off the spiritual side of the ledger. Seriously.

When my husband met me, I'd been working in early childhood education for nearly 10 years. He saw that I lived within my means, a very modest life I was satisfied with. He's never discouraged me from that. Now, 16 years later, he feels comfortable that I am homeschooling our 10 year old and not bringing in any outside income at the moment. I was the parent who covered childcare over the past many years so that he could work the longer hours and attend trainings/education to give him the much-boosted salary that he now has. (Compared to when we met.) I take care of 90% of the home realm, he goes off to work and is awesome. We support each other both materially (clean clothes, dinner on the table, roof over our heads, money to pay for it all!) and emotionally. My staying home works for our family. He is ambitious in his work, whereas I'm more 'stay the steady course' but we both appreciate what the other brings to the partnership. I have gone back to work when we most needed it, and we learned that brings on an entirely different sort of stress and expenses.

Were I in your shoes, if my husband made those comments, I'd tell him "hey, I'm doing my part to better the humans around us"... I know your 'summers off' means that instead of taking 9 months of pay at a higher rate, you have that same amount spread out over 12 months. Teaching is HARD work. You need the time for restoration, continuing your own education, plus taking care of your family while school is out. You are giving your child the memory of being able to come home from school and be 'done' for the day. The gift of downtime, which is huge. Not everyone enjoys being an entrepreneur. I loved teaching preschool but I really wish I hadn't run one out of my home for 18 months. It was hard on everyone. I don't enjoy building a business-- I just want to teach. THAT is where my skills are. I have had my own in-home preschool--- I liked the teaching part but didn't enjoy the business end, bringing in families, etc. Knowing what your desires are is wonderful.

Women aren't required to be submissive and meek-- they should be a helpmeet. A helpmeet does not require living someone else's dream; it is simply a person who makes life smooth for others. Sounds like you are doing your part and then some.

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L.U.

answers from Seattle on

Wow.
You work full time and he works full time. You BOTH contribute.
Next time he says that you tell him to suck an egg. (I KID!!! Kind of...)
I'm floored that he would say something like that.
Have a discussion with your husband. Lay it out on the table for him. Let him know that it is hurtful when he says stuff like that. Sometimes our partners are not aware that they are saying things that can be painful. Maybe he was just pointing out that he makes $100,000 a year and you make $40,000 (I assume. You are a teacher). And it was just a factual comment. Or maybe he feels jealous that you are able to take summers off and play with the kids while he is working. Having a conversation about the "why" behind his comment may help you both to communicate better.

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M.6.

answers from New York on

First, I would wonder if he really has the straight of it on how much his mom did or didn't do. She sounds like Wonder Woman, but is she really? Sometimes we look at the past with rose colored glasses on. Also, did his mom actually do EVERYTHING or did she just SAY she did everything. Do you know what I mean? At any rate, much of what we learn is by example so if he was told as a child that doing anything less than his mom did would be considered "lazy", it is no wonder that he would think you "lazy." Definitely not true or nice, but it does put a different perspective on where he is coming from. I would also wonder if he was poor or hungry or went without as a child, that he has this burning need to become a millionaire. I know some people actually set out to be millionaires, but many invested their time into something they loved and that ended up making them a millionaire. I think it would be pretty hard, if not impossible, to just WANT to be a millionaire and try to come up with a way to make it happen vs the other way around.

I see that he is against marriage counseling and that sucks, but you could still go. There is a lot of benefit to be gained in finding out what pushes your buttons, how to let go of the small stuff, and when to push back on the bigger things (and how to do it in a productive way). I'd sign myself up and not worry about whether he is on board with it - who knows, maybe he will change his mind.

I'd be less worried about the side comments for my own well being, but do the kids hear this too? That is what I would really be concerned about. No kid should have to hear mom called lazy :(

Personally? I think your plate is full :) Working (as a teacher, no less, bless your heart!) and being a mom are tough jobs. Perhaps the issue is that you are better at time management, not that you are lazy!

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M.C.

answers from Chicago on

Wow, you have a great life that many aspire to. You have kids, a job you love and are good at, a husband who also brings in a good income, no debt and no spending issues, he helps you out, and an idyllic home and community area. I don't really have any advice, but I am just sorry your husband doesn't get it. He's not seeing how good he's got it. I'm sorry he is saying these things to you.

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C.F.

answers from New York on

First thing I'd ask is what it is he really wants. You say you have no real debt and that your not living pay check to pay check so why the big push for you to slug it out doing more work than necessary? What is it that he thinks you owe him for earning less than him? Why is it his money vs your money? Seems a bit odd to have that mentality of mine vs yours in a marriage I think you should sit down with him and talk about what exactly he wants so you can both work out what the underlying issue is. Does he want to pay off the mortgage quicker? Does he resent you not having as many hours as him? Does he want to slow down? Ect I'd make it clear that just because he want earns more doesn't mean he gets to treat you less.

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M.G.

answers from Portland on

Can't say I've ever heard that, no.

You have different views and values. That's got to be hard.

My mom was a teacher. Having her summers with us was one huge perk. I am thankful that she got to spend those times with us and that we had the best of both worlds. My father had a very large income, and my mom's was much smaller in comparison. He always said my mom had the harder of both jobs. He got that.

I don't know how you'd make a person see that. He obviously doesn't value your profession. Is it the summers 'off' he is upset with?

Some people are just after having the life. Even though you live comfortably, is he craving bigger/more vacations? More trips? More 'things' or comforts?

I would figure out what his goal is here, and see if there isn't another way to address it. I myself would be very offended and not feel supported if my husband said that to me. That might be his goal, not yours. Hopefully he will accept that.

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L.!.

answers from Santa Fe on

Please feel hugged and supported.
I am sorry you have to go through this.

If my husband would say something like this to me (well, you changed last night the comment he made) I would leave eventually. Since summer break is in 6 weeks I would make a financial plan, rent a place and pack up the week after school is over. I would not be able to continue a relationship with this kind of personality.

I have very little tolerance if I would recognize my husband will not value me or is disrespectful!

Typically there is not much you can do when the partner shows less and less respect. Even more since he does not commit counseling...

He needs a wake up call. You have it in your hand to change something or he will continue to be disappointed in you and makes your relationship miserable.

In fact, you added that he expect you to take an extra job on to increase the $ amount in your account. It just sucks on his self esteem if he only makes $80k.

He obviously is dreaming about some wealth and throws the ball in your court to be proactive.

It's better to make a painful break than draw out the agony. In a couple of years he will give you guilt feelings that you messed up his potential to become RICH. You just can not win with him!

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C.T.

answers from Santa Fe on

Wow. For real? Your husband is being an a**. You make a good salary...you work fulltime doing something you enjoy. You don't spend a lot and you seem to really have your priorities straight in life. Does he know how many women spend $300 on shoes, $500 on purses, $100s on makeup, $1000s on clothes? And they expect their man to pay for it all? Honestly, I think your husband has different values than you do. I think this is a big problem long term. He sounds superficial and greedy. You sound like a great person and he is the one that needs counseling. It is too bad he refuses to do it. If it were me I would get pretty pissed about his and would lay down the law with him...and insist that he gets counseling because he is messed up. Stick to your guns. You are right.

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T.D.

answers from Springfield on

yes he does.
hes the breadwinner and complains that our hose is a bit messy. (lived in messy)
mine is also working on things to make our relationship better. talk to him about counseling. tell him how he is making you feel and that you are not going to listen to him try to controll you by this manipulating talk.

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