Hi. I work full time (until mat leave in 1 month) and DH is a market trader. Business isn't brilliant because of the credit crunch and I'm trying to think of ways to change what we do. I have discussed it with my dad (who DH respects loads, and who is an antiques dealer himself with 30 years experience) and Dad agrees with my views so I know I'm not just interfering. I need Dad to speak to DH but not in an engineered way. Anyway, we have agreed that I will do the odd market here and there after the baby is born, as well. Thing is, whenever I try to raise any opinions that contradict his he gets defensive, and cross. I know he's got this 'I've been doing this for years and what do you know' thing, but it's also that he feels criticised and as if I'm accusing him of not being good enough, or making enough money. Thing is, I know he could make more if he tried a few things. I can't, for example, reduce the prices without his agreement even though I think £29 is a much more attractive price than £31 for example. Anyway, we had another cross word last night, he ended up saying 'well you do it then' (about pricing) so I said I wasn't doing anything under those circumstances (us disagreeing) and went to bed. He expects my help though in other ways, driving the van, helping set up, making a packed lunch...but I'm not knowledgable enough to have any real input My mum and Dad used to work together and they were a partnership. We both have risked stuff for this business and we both rely on it, so why am I not allowed to be really involved?
Thanks You are right. I just feel frustrated. And believe me I try to discuss things in a sensitive way. The only reason my Dad was involved was that I was at their house this weekend and really stressed, and my parents could see. I think I will spend the whole day with him soon and see how it goes, and maybe I will find I am wrong!
I find the direct approach works best with my DH, so I would just look him in the eyes, when he isn't doing something else to distract him, and say," Why is it that I can haul things about ( and in your condition) and make tea and sandwiches but you don't take any of my ideas seriously?? Am I thick? Do you think I don't know anything, or that you automatically know best cos you've been doing it longer? I find it very insulting that you wont even listen to me. It is only a suggestion, in a conversation. I am not impementing anything without your say so, so I don't know why you are getting so defensive and cross, and frankly I am getting really peed off with it"
This seems to work better for me anyway, and when he says no I don't think you're thick, I reply, well stop acting like you do then. Right? When he says he isn't, look really serious and say well it certainly feels that way to me, you make me feel stupid. Men are so bloody hard to talk to, like children I think they are too busy listening to the sound of their own voices that they can't hear us
What about asking him to trial some of your ideas for a month and see how it goes?
FWIW I agree that 29 quid (pound sign gone awol!) is more attractive than 31. I would round 29 up to 30 in my head anyway, if I were thinking of buying, but 31 just tips it over into 'nearly 40'. So I'd be less likely to buy at that price.
Thanks guys. I tried the direct approach yesterday, he ended up throwing his toys out of the pram as it were and rather than go ahead to score points I tried to be mature and said I would leave it for now. The question is aroundf putting price tags on some of the stock (he doesn't like doing it) He has agreed to try price tags but then we disagreed on prices. It's only a matter of a couple of quid and I wish he would take my advice, as I know that psychological pricing does work. However, I'm not going to write a price he's not happy with so I suppose it's a compromise to try price tags with his prices. If they don't sell in the next couple of weeks (it's summer clothes) I will suggest a 'sale' with dropping a couple of quid of f everything and see how that goes!
Working with your husband can be hard going. If it works great but if it doesn't then you can put a huge strain on your marriage too. (Also its a bit boring being woken at 4am to be told of some brilliant new idea he's had for the business!!) Someone once advised me to have distinct areas of responsibility. We tried it and it really works!! If I were you, and you are set on gettign involved, then work out what your job is and which is his and only cross over when invited.