To feel resentful towards my DP

(25 Posts)
frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 12:22:11

I am actually being totally unreasonable actually but i can't help it. Kicks up the backside welcome.

This may be long and whingy, you have been warned.

Background: I haven't really worked since i had DD seven years ago. I did write up my PhD when she was a baby so that kept me from working and of course then i didnt have a job to go to. I wonder if i had been in a job i would have gone down the maternity leave route. But anyway, i had terrible PND (not an excuse as i dont think this is the reason for my not working) and it blew my confidence. I tried to get a job for ages.

My DP has his own business and he works (or did) hard. We have had terrible financial difficulties and i should have gone back to work sooner. Somehow, we kept it together, my DPs stress levels have been stupidly high having to deal with all of that, plus me being a bit of a lazy arse. It was hard, we nearly split - we are not the same couple we used to be. I have always done the accounts and invoices, marketing etc but this is not as much as it sounds, hes a carpenter so the accounts just self assesment etc, we couldnt afford an accountant and it really is paying someone for nothing. imo.

Fastforward a few years after DD started school and i have got a "part-time" job, its in speach marks because i only get PAID part time, i work over 40 hours a week, this is because im new and in a profession where people get taken the piss out of and spend so much time doing prep work, but thats ok i guess - i get paid for 12 hours and its at a rate the gives me what would be a minimum wage (just!) full time job. But its not enough for us to live on - i wish it was. The job is really hard and im struggling, exhausted and constantly stressed out.

DP just seems to have "breathed out" and has had hardly any work since i started the job back in november. So instead of being more comfortable and not having to worry about the bills which was the whole idea of me working, its the same as always (picking up value biscuits in asda, putting them back because i don't NEED them) and im still worrying about money. DP says that my working has saved our bacon. Great, i love that im contributing and i feel terrible that i didnt contribute for so long.

But this is the thing - i resent that DP isn't working much, i feel he is kicking back, the truth of the matter is, he isn't at all, his work has dried up and he only has odds and sods. We don't have a budget to advertise but i get so frustrated, the work just finds him (mostly old clients and regulars) and this is becuase he is actually very good at what he does, but the last bit of work came through MY marketing. I still had to do the tax return but that was because im a control freak and wanted to make sure it was done properly hmm. DPs work being slack means he can take DD to school and pick her up when i am late home but I feel so so resentful that suddenly his workload has lessened and mine has hit the stratisphere.

If i were earning enough money then id say fine, be a SAHP, after all he has ssupported us alone for 7 years. I just don't bring enough in, my wage barely covers the mortgage which has grown due to our financial dificulties, we took bad advice and remortgaged.

I am a selfish bitch aren't i???

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 12:29:25

That'l be a yes then!

I don't think you are being selfish but, without knowing more about him, I don't think he is either.
Perhaps give him some time to chill out after such a long time of hard graft and then approach him with the attitude of "how can WE build your business" and get some incentive goals to work for. Eg. A holiday or paying something off etc.

It sounds like you were doing what you could, depression is crippling and so is the resulting low self esteem. It's great you're back in the job market and just make sure you both get some "selfish" time thanks

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Sun 03-Feb-13 12:35:29

No, you're not, it I can see your DH's POV too.

Have you sat down with the accounts and made him aware?

Also, it's not sustainable to work for pt wages, will this situation end?

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Sun 03-Feb-13 12:36:03

* it = although confused

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 12:44:32

Unexpected, he is fully aware of the situation and as i say, its not deliberate, but i can't help but wonder what we would have done over xmas without my wage - managed i guess but i don't see how. I don't think he is stepping back on purpose but he is very demotivated about the business at the moment and i just wish he would see my working for what it is, a chance for him to actually build the business now, to spend time on marketing etc, but he seems to be dragging out his jobs because he doesn't have that much lined up. That way he works every week, just not very much if that makes sense. He needs to get out there delivering leaflets, putting notices in shop windows and chasing up old clients, friends etc. He is in a rut and i hate seeing him like it. Its like we have swapped roles totally and instead of feeling for him, i resent it sad

As for my situation, i dont see it changing until i find something else, which i must as this is only a supply position which i don't believe will be long term. I am looking but of course taking up so much time with my "part time " job i am not doing so seriously. But i agree with you its untenable.

UnexpectedItemInShaggingArea Sun 03-Feb-13 13:14:04

TBH it's his business, you can't motivate him to work hard at it, it has to come from him.

You sound like you are adjusting to the change in roles, it's no different to when you weren't working and he was keeping the family financially.

It was hard, we nearly split - we are not the same couple we used to be.

This seems relevant as in your posts there's a lot of me and him, not a lot of us.

Again I don't want to be harsh and I don't think you are being unreasonable, just that there's more going on than his lack of business drive.

HildaOgden Sun 03-Feb-13 13:28:11

The stress you are feeling about being financially responsible for the family is exactly what he has been feeling for the last 7 years.I think he is ,indeed,'breathing' again.I completely get your point about this now being a chance to push forward to better things,but from his point of view he might see it as you having a bit of a nerve nagging him within weeks of being the main provider,when he was doing it for years.(Not in any way saying he is right,just trying to play devils advocate and understand his viewpoint).

I'd suggest approaching it from a more positive stance...sit down and calmly decide between you where you both want to go from here eg more luxuries,holidays,savings etc.Then come up with a plan to make that happen (of course that plan will include you both working to the best of your abilities).

What I'm trying to say is make this a team effort,or you risk alienating him.Nobody ever comes on board without resentment when they are 'nagged',you need to co-operate with each other to move forward positively.

Hmm, I'm sorry to say I think YABU

I know you must be really stressed out but it's only been a couple months, compared to the years your DH was in the same position -- actually, not quite the same, because he is working still, just not as much as before.

I think it would be better to turn your energy into improving your own situation, both in terms of getting more experienced with the prep so you are not working full-time and looking for another job. You say you aren't looking seriously because you work full-time -- sorry but most people who work full-time still manage to job search, obviously it can be difficult but it sounds like that should be your priority right now. There's only so much your DH can do, there is a recession and people are cutting back.

I do understand where you are coming from and I would never call you a selfish bitch, I just think you need to cut him some slack for a bit.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 13:43:22

don't be sorry dreaming, i know you are right - i know i sholdnt be feeling it, but i do confused

Im just sick of being hard up i guess and thought my having a job would turn that around.

I can totally understand, it must be frustrating to still feel so skint. I can see why you would be so disillusioned. I just think probably the quickest route to improving things, and the one you have the most control over, is to improve your own job situation, which sounds really sucky.

Is there any way you can use all your experience helping your DH build up his business, to go freelance yourself? If you could combine that with a proper part-time job, even if it's not in your field, that might work better.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 14:10:36

dreaming, i dont know really about my job, im lucky to have it but everyone in the same boat (lecturing in college) with too much admin piled on, expected to work outside of contracted hours. To a degree i know im banking stuff for next year in terms of planning etc as i will have done it already but it takes all my time. Am forcing myself not to work today else i would have not had a break at all. I haven't been there long so to leave is out of the question, i dont want to do that, but it wont look good on cv to have only been there a short time. Also, this job fits in so many other ways - term time only holy grail job!

DP needs to do this himself, he did the books for the tax return and said it made him feel better (and realise how much work it is, thankyou muchly!) so am hoping that he does pull it out of the bag, im not going to do anything to "support" him though, ive always done that and he needs to do it himself, i'll do invoices and estimates as he is dyslexic and struggles with that side of things but other than that, he needs to do this for himself - as much as i want to step in, i don't think i should. I often wonder if my involvment in the business ha not been a good thing, its not all HIS then, does tht make sense?

Yes, I see what you mean.

Maybe it would help to look at things long-term then? If next year your hours will be much less, maybe then you could take on some other work to bring in a bit more. And don't forget to factor in how much money you save in childcare during holidays.

I just think you need to be realistic. A self-employed carpenter and a part-time lecturer -- I don't think it's really that unusual to be skint in those circumstances. You just have to hope things will get better, when the economy rebounds, when you have more experience, etc. It's only been a few months, things will get better.

Corygal Sun 03-Feb-13 14:22:37

To be honest, I feel for you both - and suggest one or both of you gets a FT job. A lone PT income is not enough to support a family.

There can't be that much admin to do if he hasn't done much work, surely? I've run a self-trader business and the tax return you did this week is way the biggest job of the year. So less from now on...

janey68 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:03:39

I can understand how you feel, because you expected after 7 years of struggle that your job would suddenly make you feel a lot better off.
However, it's not reasonable to resent your dh. What you feel now is what he's been feeling for years. Maybe try to focus on the fact that if you hadn't started to earn, his work would still have dried up and you'd be in deep shit. You almost imply that his reduction in work is as a result of your increase- but logically you must know that's nonsense, we're in a triple dip recession and he's hit a bad patch

minibmw2010 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:12:56

He supported the family through 7 years of tough times financially and health wise, took on great stresses. You've been doing it a few months and you resent him for taking his foot off the pedal? Wow, you're a charmer !!

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 15:13:36

Could you talk to him about a marketing campaign? There's a lot you can do for free or not much outlay. Does he have a web presence?

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 15:14:58

mini did you even read the first line of the OP?

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 15:15:42

Or the last line of it?

minibmw2010 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:15:58

Yes I did, OP said kicks up the backside welcome and that was mine !!

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 15:16:43

Thought you might say that somehow.

minibmw2010 Sun 03-Feb-13 15:20:00

Why so ??! They've had a tough time for 7 years for various reasons, OP has admitted he's worked his backside off trying to keep them afloat for a long time. Now OP is working and her DH's job has slowed down, whether deliberately or just co-incidentally only he can say. Either way saying she's disappointed in him when he's worked so hard for 7 years for the family is unfair, so yes that was my kick up her backside.

Sorry if it wasn't gently enough for you, but I didn't see the need to sugar coat.

ilovesooty Sun 03-Feb-13 15:22:31

Fair enough. I suppose it was just the last sentence of your post that I thought was a bit OTT.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 03-Feb-13 17:42:21

I am very charming thank you very much grin I absolutely agree with you though minibmw - totally out of order to be feeling like this and im frustrated at my resentment. Because 1) He hasn't really stepped back, the work has lightened up, but it always does this time of year and 2) As you say, he's shouldered it all for 7 years I haven't contributed short of a few leaflet drops and managing some accounts. So my kick up the backside with no sugar to coat the pill is gratefully accepted. It would be wrong to say that i feel disappointed in him though, that couldnt be further from the truth, I am extremely proud of my DP who held it together when i couldn't. I can just see he is in a rut at the moment with his motivation levels and feel that my bringing money in is facilitating that in some way. He says that he hates that its me earning the money and because of my bank account at the moment i have to physically give him the money to pay the bills and he struggles with that. Its funny, now that i am earning (im not sure if i AM the main breadwinner just yet) i am more stressed about the money as i can't stick my head in the sand anymore.

I am not sure what i want to do about my job, i like it, but its not secure but i will use it as a stepping stone to something full time. If i could bring in enough money i would be more than happy for him to be a SAHD actually, make stuff to sell (anyone want any bespoke cabinets? windows? grin) as that would be what would make him the most happy.

Someone mentioned that i relied on my job making me feel much better off, yes, absolutely, not so much financially but in my mind, i suffer from crippling anxiety which IS better, of course now i just stress and flap about my job and controlling the money in my bank account instead of stressing about not having a job and not contributing.

To be fair, i asked for a kick up the bum so i appreciate people saying what i am thinking anyway.

minibmw2010 Sun 03-Feb-13 17:57:23

It's clear you know you're being unfair to resent him, so that's the first (and maybe hardest) step out of the way. The rest just try to get your head around. Times are v tough all around at the moment, hopefully more work will come his way soon. Meantime it's down to you.

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