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Life choices

(5 Posts)
Underpressurenow Sat 23-May-15 22:04:32

I'm 44, my W is 47. We've been together 17 years, married for 13. 2 boys, 9 & 12. Our relationship has had its ups and downs but generally we're good together. Over the last few years we've had to move a few times and a particularly bad job experience kicked off a period of MH for me. I'm pretty much through this but recognise that I probably had symptoms of depression with me most of my life and probably always will. I ended up going NC with by best friend due to to his complete lack of support during this period (another story...). I am in a senior role in my industry which brings certain pressures and I manage to keep a sense of calm by being an avid cyclist (not to the exclusion of my family though). Last year I experienced a pulmonary embolism from flying and 2 months ago developed a heart condition (atrial fibrillation) for no apparent reason (not unduly stressed either) which returned 10 days ago. 10 days ago was a big day - my W was fired from her job for poor performance (a subsequent grievance has had the NGO concerned expunge this reason and my W just wants to move on) and my AF returned which saw me enter A&E and be given a particular drug concoction to which I reacted very badly and almost died. I'm fit and recovered quickly after treatment.

So, the issue. My W has had her confidence sorely knocked and does not know if she can enter the traditional job market again. She is keen to set up a business in an area I know a lot about and have questions as to whether or not she can succeed (for a variety of reasons). I feel uncomfortable following this route - her previous role was a significant contribution to our monthly income. Given my health issues its made me realise two things: life is potentially very short; I don't want to spend it all working. At the same time, I am in the running for a role which is a little risky (private equity) but could pay out to a level after two years which would give us serious room for freedom and choice. What I wish is that my W would seek a 'normal' job and see, if I get and take the new role, if I am successful in it. The challenge here is my W's confidence and, if I raise the subject, it quickly descends into difficult territory - I don't support her, she wants to do what is right for her etc. I don't know if life is that simple - we've made lifestyle choices like private schooling, big mortgage etc. I'd appreciate any guidance.

FlabulousChix Sat 23-May-15 22:09:25

To be fair your wife sounds selfish. You have a heart condition and primarily your health should trump her desire to branch out into business on her own. Are your finances such you can afford for her to embark on this enterprise. I suggest you put it on the table that if you suffer further problems you might not be able to work at all. How will you eat and cover the bills if she is fannying around with a new business with no guarantees income? That's the crux of it. Your health comes first. Has to.

Solasum Sat 23-May-15 22:10:54

It sounds like to sustain your current lifestyle you both need to keep working 'proper' jobs. If you are prepared to go state and downsize, maybe new directions for you both could work.

I sympathise with your wife, but equally you are not being unreasonable to say that life is too short to work like a beast, and presumably you would rather be poorer and get to see your kids grow up than not. It shouldn't just be you who has to compromise, even if she feels she has been over-supporting you, if you see what I mean.

Vivacia Sat 23-May-15 22:28:54

I think that you should both sit down and talk about a five or ten year plan rather than a tomorrow plan. This would give you both the opportunity to talk about your priorities nowadays, and your wishes for the future.

Personally, just personally, I find the idea of less work, more health, lower outgoings and more exciting lives far more appealing than the sound of private education and heart attacks.

Underpressurenow Sat 23-May-15 22:32:56

Thank you all.

Vivacia - your last paragraph made me laugh out loud because you're absolutely right!

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