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DH throwing away his career

(202 Posts)
LeilaBriggs Tue 17-Apr-18 03:45:29

I don't know whether IABU or not and would appreciate some input. We have recently returned to the UK after a few years abroad. For background, DH took on a trade after leaving school in the UK and did a 2 year apprenticeship. When we moved overseas, he worked his way up to Manager. He was an excellent manager with great communication and leadership skills. He also has amazing technical knowledge in his field. When we decided to move back, I called a couple of recruiters to suss out the job market for a manager in his field. They were really keen and wanted to see DH's CV.

However, DH has decided that his overseas experience is not worth anything. To prove this, he called the same recruiters as me and got off the phone both times smiling and happy as they had apparently confirmed that companies want UK experience, so they won't put him forward for a job as manager. He said he was relieved hmm.

So he's decided to stay in the same field, but look for another role, basically as the person who allocates all the work at the company. This is an unqualified job. In the adverts it usually says, "experience in this field desirable but not essential."

It took him 20 years to get to manager. He says he doesn't have the confidence to push himself forward and I can see that, but I think he needs to try.

I have found a job. My salary would be slightly less than his as a manager, but a lot more than his Unqualified Job that he wants to do. We are househunting (renting) and he wants a proper house with a garage and space for his hobby. We also have DS who has SEN. DS also has some after-school activities as does my other DC.

So here's the AIBU... I am furious that DH wants to throw away his career without even trying to get the job he is qualified for. I think he's being really feeble. I am also worried that DS will not be able to go to the school I have chosen for him as we won't be able to afford it. I want to say to DH, "OK, I will use my salary for school fees, after-school activities and everything else related to the kids. You can pay the rent and the bills."

There is no way he will be able to afford a proper house with his Unqualified Job salary, but I don't care TBH, I would happily live in a tent to prioritise the school fees, etc.

Any thoughts please? Am I selfish? Am I insensitive to his insecurities and fears? I just don't know... Thanks.

LolitaLempicka Tue 17-Apr-18 04:12:42

Maybe he wants a stress free job? Why are you concentrating more on his career path than your own? What do you do? Couldn’t you be the one to get a better paying job?

ThisIsTheFirstStep Tue 17-Apr-18 04:20:19

Why are you pushing him? Push yourself. Not everyone wants a ‘career’ and Id be furious if my husband pushed me into a job I didn’t want.

MarthasGinYard Tue 17-Apr-18 04:20:59

So it's taken him 20 years reach this position is he 40ish then?

Are you just more career driven do you think?

dirtyquerty Tue 17-Apr-18 04:31:52

He is the one who has to do the flipping job! Stop being so controlling

QueenofSerene Tue 17-Apr-18 05:09:21

Unfortunately you can’t really push another person to be more career driven or motivated, surely a happy husband is worth more than his potential earnings.

That said, it doesn’t work well if this leaves you being the unhappy party in the relationship so somehow you need to reach a compromise about what you both value in life like the upbringing of your kids, what kind of house you want etc.

You need to sit down with him and crunch the numbers and put it on the table, he might realise that he needs to work towards a position that earns slightly more to contribute equally to the household but not necessarily going back into a job/field that he doesn’t feel confident/happy in.

LeilaBriggs Tue 17-Apr-18 05:09:35

Thanks everyone. Maybe I am being a bit controlling. I am just worried about how we are going to cope financially. I am at the top of my game so nowhere else for me to go. Not bragging, it's a shit dead-end job grin.

sofato5miles Tue 17-Apr-18 05:15:52

I would be utterly bemused by his attitude too. Though maybe your assessment of his skills ( esp communication and leadership) as being so good may be off, if he doesn't even recognise them.

LeilaBriggs Tue 17-Apr-18 05:18:57

sofato5miles, he's got great skills but no confidence. I'm the opposite: not particularly good at my job but happy to push myself forward for something I want.

Cuppaoftea Tue 17-Apr-18 05:20:33

We are househunting (renting) and he wants a proper house with a garage and space for his hobby.

This part makes him very unreasonable. You are concerned with prioritising your DC's education and activities including providing for your DS' SEN, if your DH wants to pay extra on rent for a garage to play in I'd say he has to earn more to pay for that.

Agree with QueenofSerene, lay the figures out for him. That you'll need to prioritise X amount of your salary for the DC's needs so you can contribute so much towards the other household bills, if he takes the much lower salaried job that will mean a much smaller property to rent.

LeilaBriggs Tue 17-Apr-18 05:24:04

You are right Cuppaoftea. One other aspect of this is that DH's family 'don't believe' in private education, even though DS clearly needs it. It comes up all the time. If money was tight, I would be under huge pressure to take him out and put him in a state school without the extra provision.

ChasedByBees Tue 17-Apr-18 05:27:19

The recruiters might not accept his experience but other employers may. That doesn’t change the fact that he was relieved that he thinks he’s unqualified. Is he just not confident or did he not like his career?

Also, you’re talking about school fees (private school?) and if that’s the case it sounds like the family needs to earn a significant amount.

If he also wants to move house, I think you should sit down and work out the figures and point out that the two paths are not compatible, but do this from a practical stand point rather than an emotional or confrontational one.

Luckingfovely Tue 17-Apr-18 05:27:35

OP I get where you are coming from. I would want him very much to go for the better job, for the sake of his family. I would be very disappointed if he didn't. I see this is not a universal view, but I think you should strive to do the best you can and give your family all the opportunities possible.

Is it just that he is out of his comfort zone? Can you help him prepare / build his confidence up / ask him to at least apply?

LeilaBriggs Tue 17-Apr-18 05:29:18

Is he just not confident or did he not like his career?

He's not confident. Also he says that he was never allowed to properly manage as the owner of the business was interfering all the time (true). But he was good at his job and could do well. He just doesn't believe it.

He loves the field he works in, he just doesn't think he's worthy of a management position in this country.

Sleephead1 Tue 17-Apr-18 05:34:56

not everyone wants to be a manager or enjoys that and that's ok. If he doesn't want to do that type of job I don't think you can force him. If he didtraining straight from school I'm guessing he's late 30s so it's a long time to be doing a job he doesn't want to do. Why don't you agree he will take this job see how he goes and review it in a year's time ?

MrsPatmore Tue 17-Apr-18 05:37:01

It doesn't seem like you can afford to have it all at the moment. A roof over your heads is a priority, then a happy family. You seem hell bent on a private school. If your child has additional needs then you will often read on here that state schools will provide better support than the independents (unless it's very specialist provision).

Circumstances change and there are different entry points for private schools. I'd get settled first, let dh get the job he feels confident doing and then re-assess.

Mummyoflittledragon Tue 17-Apr-18 05:42:29

I would find a specialist careers advice/relocation service used predominantly for foreigners in managerial roles moving to this country and get him to go and see them. It will probably cost a lot of money and I expect he will need a few sessions or a couple of days intensive. However, they will talk to him about his prospects, go over his cv and give him tips, interview techniques etc. These services must exist in the U.K. They exist in other countries. Look at this as therapy and an investment in his future. If you don’t help him to nip this attitude in the bud now, he risks throwing away all his past experience and may never again reach his potential. That is, unless he doesn’t want to reach it. I think he needs a little help deciding his priorities.

Bumpitybumper Tue 17-Apr-18 05:44:21

I think most people would take the easy, stress free option IF there was no difference in pay. There is however a rather sizeable difference in this case and the family clearly need the additional money so I do think he has a duty to push himself a bit more. Obviously if doing the managerial job would massively impact his mental health or make him super stressed then it probably isn't fair to ask him to stay in the role, but he should be able to deal with a bit of stress and overcome his confidence issues.

I think this area is a bit of a grey one generally as if he wasn't working at all or was working PT then lots of people would say he should be doing more. Where someone is working FT but not necessarily fulfilling their potential for whatever reason, it becomes much harder to say definitively that they should be pushing themselves more. I personally think that he should because of the money and the fact that he is clearly capable of doing the role as he has done it abroad.

Cuppaoftea Tue 17-Apr-18 05:55:48

One other aspect of this is that DH's family 'don't believe' in private education, even though DS clearly needs it. It comes up all the time. If money was tight, I would be under huge pressure to take him out and put him in a state school without the extra provision.

What does your DH himself think, would some of that pressure come from him? If the school you've chosen has extra provision for your DS' specific needs I'd absolutely stand firm that's where he's continuing. You've secured a job which enables you to cover all of the fees. Your DH ought to be concerned with saving for your DC's future too.

It does sound like instead of sharing the load he's looking to take all the pressure off himself and put it all on you which isn't fair at all.

Olympiathequeen Tue 17-Apr-18 05:56:17

I think there’s more behind it than just lack of confidence. If this were the case he wouldn’t be able to do the job he does. I honestly think he doesn’t want the stress.

It is possible to get a LA to fund a school with the sen provision you want, but I do understand why you want to go straight into the right educational niche for your child, rather than have a couple of years in an in appropriate environmental

rwalker Tue 17-Apr-18 06:14:09

He's had enough of being a manager and what comes with it .Sounds like you see him more of a cash cow than a husband .

Cuppaoftea Tue 17-Apr-18 06:28:22

Sounds like you see him more of a cash cow than a husband.

How so when OP's secured a well paid job and is saying she can pay for absolutely everything for the children but not also cover the larger house he wants to rent with extra space for his hobby.

School fees for a DC with SEN plus costs and investment in the future for all DCs should certainly come before renting him a hobby garage. A smaller roof over their heads with adequate bedrooms and living space can suffice. It's the DH who needs to get his priorities straight.

strawberrisc Tue 17-Apr-18 06:43:04

There is nothing more miserable than being stuck in a truly miserable job. I’ve been there and it pushed me to the brink. I halved my salary by taking a job I love and will have been there ten years this year. I’m the least materialistic person you could ever meet and am happy watching TV, seeing friends, reading, shopping in Aldi and Primark etc. I might have hardly any disposable income but it’s the best move I ever made.

Momo27 Tue 17-Apr-18 06:46:20

He’s being unreasonable if he’s wanting a bigger house that isn’t affordable on his lower salary. He’s not being unreasonable to say he’s had enough of management and is prepared to continue to work full time just in a different role

MN is full of women who are ‘underemployed,’ or only working part time while their husband works full time and in many cases earns 4 or 5 times what the wife does. (I’m not talking about families with very young children, I’m talking about women who have never worked to capacity again after having kids.)

Why the double standards?

Oliversmumsarmy Tue 17-Apr-18 06:53:02

I cannot believe that the recruitment agency told him they wouldn't consider his overseas experience.

Normally it is a positive.

With regards to taking an unqualified position. This would be fine if he was single and had no responsibilities or was willing to live in a much smaller house.

I think he wants it all but doesn't want to put himself out to get it.

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