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to not want to be the "breadwinner"?

(35 Posts)
evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 19:29:49

My dh finally agreed to try for a baby this year and as part of the "negotiations" it was agreed that I would work and he would stay at home if and when we had a baby.

He is therefore now encouraging me to apply for better paid jobs and bring home more dosh. However I don't want to start a new job while ttc because I suffer greatly from anxiety and my current employers are supportive, and i couldn't guarantee this elsewhere. Because of anxiety i had to knock back a job with £15k pay rise and because of this I feel like I will never be a proper provider for my family. Also my dh is 20 years older so he will retire in 10 or so years time anyway.

aibu to not want the pressure of being the sole breadwinner? or is this the price of equality?

Teeb Mon 23-Sep-13 19:32:13

I think it depends on the figures you're talking about, and the expectation of lifestyle you both have.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 19:39:03

hi teeb,

i bring in 22k and dh has rental income from a property. so i think that's ok cos we have a small mortgage. bit i worry that my anxiety will hold me back and mean that any child will miss on things that i can't provide.

i am also wondering if the stress of being the breadwinner is something that contributed to males dying younger in the past? and so part of women's future?

partyondude Mon 23-Sep-13 19:54:19

I'm in the same boat. Dh is a TA. He earns nearly enough to cover the child care that we need because he's at time his money will contribute to other household things but we're 9 years away from not needing child care.
Currently we can almost afford the food bill plus the rest of our monthly expenses but there's precious little left over for birthdays, Christmas, holidays etc.
He's done this because its more family friendly but the idea of working my bits off and remaining mostly broke forever is quite depressing.
Its very easy to have a pity party about it -and I do frequently in my head but at the end of the day it is what it is. I don't really have any option to change career or do more studying. I just have to get on with it and try not to resent it.
its not always easy though.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:11:16

yeah it's not great. i think i would prefer if we both worked part time tbh

ILikeBirds Mon 23-Sep-13 20:12:31

I think making a 'deal' to have a child is a dangerous path to follow.

The 'negotiation' you've had has nothing to do with equality.

CoffeeTea103 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:16:33

You say that he finally agreed to have a baby, does this mean he is just going along with it?

He is pushing you to take on a job that will just increase your anxiety issues, include a baby and do you think you can cope with it all?

Do both of you want this baby equally as much?

Viviennemary Mon 23-Sep-13 20:17:42

I think it's a lot less stressful for all concerned if the burden of earning money is shared. I would simply hate to be responsible for earning all the family money. But if only one person works then that's how it is unless people have private means. But having one earner It does seem to suit a lot of people though. So the answer is no system suits everyone. And if you don't want to be the sole breadwinner think carefully about going into a situation where you will be.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:27:34

thanks, yeah the whole baby thing has been a "long protracted negotiation" where i persuaded him.. it was the same when we got married, got a dog etc. i also think i am just frightened of the responsibility of potentially a whole family's welfare resting on my shoulders... maybe just part of being a "grown up" though..

MortifiedAdams Mon 23-Sep-13 20:30:48

You have had to persuade this man to have a baby? And he plans on being a SAHP? It doesnt add up.

Or did he havr to persuade you?

Meglet Mon 23-Sep-13 20:33:05

No, you're right, it is scary being the sole breadwinner. I'm a LP and crippled by the fear I might lose my job or my health will pack up and we'll be scuppered.

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 23-Sep-13 20:36:56

"yeah the whole baby thing has been a "long protracted negotiation" where i persuaded him.. it was the same when we got married, got a dog etc."



Go and find someone who feels lucky to be with you, who is dying to marry, who can't wait to have children with you.

That "deal" you made is BULLSHIT.

"I'll let you have a baby if I can stop working"

Tell him to go and fuck himself.

That's not how supportive, happy couples decide that one of them will be a SAHP.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:42:29

i suppose it does sound a bit one sided.. but loads of woman in know have done some "persuading"... i thought it was normal! i feel better though that iamnbu to want to pile on the stress through a sense of duty/obligation to what we'd agreed...

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 23-Sep-13 20:46:45

Persuading someone to have a baby is a world away from being forced to agree to living a life you don't want so you will be allowed to have a baby.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:51:02

meglet - i selfishly never thought of LPs and how hard that must be too...

I should prob stop feeling sorry for myself and have an adult conversation with dh.

i also think the whole welfare cuts/ lack of safety net thing is playing my mind... shouldn't have read so much dickens.. keep thinking of worst case scenario.. ending up a beggar/chimney sweep or something!

ohdarcy Mon 23-Sep-13 20:54:12

hmmm.. I think it is a tricky one. I wish I wasn't the main (often sole) breadwinner. just because I wish I was the one at home with the kids and looking after all the homely things. and i feel so responsible. but dh would swap places in a minute, so neither of us are exactly where we want to be. but we understand that and support each other and see that between us we are working together for the good of all of us. we could have made different choices in the past but i still think given the chance again we'd make the same ones. so you just get on with it. both of us working part time is amazing too (it sometimes happens like that) but then we don't want to compromise on material 'wants'. you can't have it all.

but the other side of all of that is that while long term maybe you do need to be the main breadwinner especially if your dh retires is that it doesnt need to start NOW. you can always do the early years and then he will be the home support when he retires and your career takes off smile

candycoatedwaterdrops Mon 23-Sep-13 20:55:48

evelyn So, he had to be forced into having a baby and only on the condition if he stays at home but does he realise that caring for a baby at home is a huge amount of work? I think this is going to go tits up and you'll be left holding the baby.

Chippednailvarnish Mon 23-Sep-13 20:59:27

What join said.

Frankly it sounds like you have had to beg for everything you want.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 20:59:54

thanks all, loads to think over...

MortifiedAdams Mon 23-Sep-13 21:01:28

Bear in mind, with him as the main carer, if you ever split, he is likely to become (and be seen as), the main carer and may become the primary/resident parent.

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 21:04:41

...mostly why i have ended up with a stubborn and overly cautious dh... so.much so that i can't imagine being with someone who said yes to things i suggested...

Chippednailvarnish Mon 23-Sep-13 21:08:01

Mutual respect is clearly missing. I would be very reluctant to have a baby with someone like your DH.

Orangeanddemons Mon 23-Sep-13 21:10:14

I wonder why you have fallen for someone so much older than yourself? If he is retiring in 10 years, maybe he is seeing this as the start of winding down.

Not sure this would be as much of an issue with someone the same age

evelyn1979 Mon 23-Sep-13 21:23:39

yeah i think he does see himself as entering a more home orientated "domestic god--ess--" future. and i would be the the career woman. all sounded quite modern until my anxiety and self doubt kicked in. to be fair, he doesn't understand the extent of my anxiety. he thinks i am destined for great things for.some reason... and is a good person in other ways...

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 23-Sep-13 21:25:47

"i can't imagine being with someone who said yes to things i suggested..."

You should try it.

It's great smile

What age are you, 30?

Don't throw your life away begging this old codger into letting you live it.

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