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Thread: Husband works a lot.. need advice

  1. #1
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    Default Husband works a lot.. need advice


    I have been married to my husband for 6 years now, together for 7 1/2. We have 3 beautiful daughters together, a 5 year old and 1 year old twins. My husband works 3 jobs, though he only needs to work one for us to live comfortably. Job one is at the fire department, and the hours are already very demanding. Job 2 is a hobby that he makes money at, but requires that he travels out of town a lot, at least 40 days total thoughout the year, though not at the same time. Job 3 is on eBay and takes a lot of his time. Let me say again that his fire department job makes us enough money to live very comfortably.

    The problem is my husband continues to work more and more every year. He keeps telling me that is wont be so busy and that he will be around more he in a few months. Well, a few months comes around and he will say the same thing. This has been happening for about 3 or 4 years now.

    I feel so isolated and alone. I feel like I am raising 3 kids by myself. There have been many weeks where he will be home for a total of 12 hours out of 7 days. When he is home he naps when the kids nap, and either goes to bed when they do, or is working on his computer. I have tried to set date nights, I have tried to get in interest by making romantic meals etc., but nothing is working. I have tried to express my concerns to him, but he just gets mad and tells me I am nagging at him. Sometimes he will ask me if he can work an overtime day and I tell him I would prefer he say home. Of course that causes world war 3 in our home and he works anyway.

    I feel like I am constantly waiting for him to spend time with us, but the time is not coming.... I want to have fun with the kids and take them places (the ocean, the snow, Disneyland, camping etc.) But he is always to busy. I have even tried to just make the plans around his schedule so he can come, but that doesn't work either. I feel like I am at the end of my rope. I just want my husband to spend time with us and the family. I want to mention too that when he does actually spend time with us he is the best husband and father a girl could ask for. He is like one of those dream husbands....

    We live in a very nice house, I don't have to work, and he does take good care of us financially. But I need him in my life!! I want him in my life. All my attempts have failed in getting him to spend more time with us.... I have no family here and all my friends have their husbands home every night and every weekend. I am afraid that our relationship is going downhill, and I dont want that to happen. Please, any advice would be greatly appreciated...

  2. #2
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    Default I have a work a holic too!

    Find and read the book "The 5 Love Languages".

    I am also married to a work-a-holic...and we will be married 15 yrs this Feb. I went through a lot of years feeling the same way you have described. This book helped me a ton. You will learn that you both have different ways of FEELING loved, and SHOWING love. and you are trying to show him you love him in the way you would like him to show you. And he probably thinks he is showing you he loves you, but its in his language not yours so you don't feel it. well that was more confusing but read it, it will make sense and maybe it will help you like it did me. Good Luck

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    Thanks for your reply. I almost feel guilty even posting here. I know he feels the way you describe, like he is showing us his love by how well he supports us. Did things ever turn around for you and your husband? Did he ever start spending more time with you? Or did you just come to accept that he was a work a holic?

    I will find the book and buy it today! I am willing to do or try almost anything to have more time with my husband... It is kinda sad because the only thing we argue about is the fact that he works to much and doesn't spend enough time with the family or just me... He knows what he is doing and he knows what I want, he is just unwilling to change...

    I hope the book helps.

    Thanks again.

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    Did things ever turn around for you and your husband? Did he ever start spending more time with you? Or did you just come to accept that he was a work a holic?


    Yes and no, it is still his nature to feel the need or urge to work and feel useful and productive. And sometimes I still get frustrated, but we have learned to communicate better over the years and it has taken alot of patients. we have 6 kids and I felt like i was a single mom alot of the time, the past 5 yrs have probably been the best over all. He still works alot but not as much and I let him have the space he needs when he is working I don't brood over it anymore. But I have learned that when I need time with him I tell him. It is definately a 2 way street, but the book helped me have more peace with the way he showed love, (the book is great for understanding your kids too!)
    It is likely that if you show him you love him in his language for awhile he will start to come around and at least be more willing to listen to your needs, where as right now he may feel like you are not appreciating him and what he is doing. Even though you do (been there) hope this helps you can email me anytime.

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    When he is done working and comes home, is it to fun, or to chores? It is possible to get into the situation where you work a lot, and every time you come home, there is a huge list of chores to be done - just doesn't seem very appealing.

    I'm not suggesting a solution - for now just trying to understand.

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    bzmum6- I went out and got that book today. I am going to start reading it... I hope it helps. I think maybe as the kids get older he might change?? I know before we had kids we would spend many hours together doing things that we loved to do! Perhaps he is just feeling the stress of our young demanding children and thinks the best way to deal with it is to get out of the house! LOL You know, 3 is hard... I can't imagine raising 6! Good for you!

    rcoreyus- You know, that is a good question. I think men in general have a hard time when a baby comes into the home. The baby cries and demands a lot of attention, and we have twins that are one, so that I am sure is contributing to the problem...And yes, even though our house is very nice, we need to do some updating and that might be causing him some stress too. I understand all those things, but he still does not take the time out to spend with us like he should. I don't feel like I am being demanding, in fact, I hardly even mention it anymore. He knows how I feel because he says to me all the time, "I know we are not spending a lot of time together, but we will in a few months when things are not so busy." Then he has the same excuse a few months down the road. Maybe I am having a hard time seeing the big picture??? Or maybe I should just start doing the things I want to do with or without him? I would still feel lonley going to the ocean or something by myself, but at least my kids would stop missing out... Heck, I think I am rambling now. Thanks for your post.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tstic364 View Post
    bzmum6- I went out and got that book today. I am going to start reading it... I hope it helps. I think maybe as the kids get older he might change?? I know before we had kids we would spend many hours together doing things that we loved to do! Perhaps he is just feeling the stress of our young demanding children and thinks the best way to deal with it is to get out of the house! LOL You know, 3 is hard... I can't imagine raising 6! Good for you!

    rcoreyus- You know, that is a good question. I think men in general have a hard time when a baby comes into the home. The baby cries and demands a lot of attention, and we have twins that are one, so that I am sure is contributing to the problem...And yes, even though our house is very nice, we need to do some updating and that might be causing him some stress too. I understand all those things, but he still does not take the time out to spend with us like he should. I don't feel like I am being demanding, in fact, I hardly even mention it anymore. He knows how I feel because he says to me all the time, "I know we are not spending a lot of time together, but we will in a few months when things are not so busy." Then he has the same excuse a few months down the road. Maybe I am having a hard time seeing the big picture??? Or maybe I should just start doing the things I want to do with or without him? I would still feel lonley going to the ocean or something by myself, but at least my kids would stop missing out... Heck, I think I am rambling now. Thanks for your post.
    a work a holic is a hard beast to tame..personally 8 hours of hard labour was enough of a day for me..even at $50 an hour overtime just wasn't worth it to me..however men with desk jobs or less physically demanding jobs don't always tire after a full day of work..it's great that he is making that extra money for a better car or home improvements or whatever.. material things are nice but at what price?..i've never heard a dying man say, "i wish i had spent more time at the office"..
    a smart man learns from his mistakes..a wise man learns from the mistakes of others..

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    Quote Originally Posted by dr.mansview View Post
    i've never heard a dying man say, "i wish i had spent more time at the office"..
    You know, he actually says this all the time. I really think he thinks it is OK to work as much as he does. Dang, I never knew it would be so hard to spend time with the one you love! Do you have any advice from a mans point of view?

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    Ok, so last night husband kept asking what was wrong with me. He said trying to have a conversation with me was like trying to pry a kid away from candy. He has been working the last 3 days, so this was all over the phone that he sensed my tone. I didn't really want to talk about my problem yet, but he kept insisting that I tell him what was wrong.

    I told him very calmly and nice that I missed him and that I felt very lonely and empty inside b/c we don't spend any time together. The conversation progressed and he got mad at me like he always does. He says that I don't appreciate that he works his ****** off to provide for us (NOT true, and I have never said that or acted that way) he says that it is my fault b/c I am taking some online college classes, and that I am the one who wanted to stay home with the kids so now he has to work more. His newest excuse for working as much as he is, is that the economy is going into a recession and he wants to be well prepared. He said he is afraid of inflation and we wants to save money. Ok, good reason yes, but he ALWAYS has some reason as to why he is working so much. The reasons are endless. I just don't get how he can get mad at me for wanting to spend time with him? I am not asking for a lot. I asked to spend maybe 20 minutes a day with him, with his undivided attention. Not working next to me, not me helping him with his work.. just sit down and have nothing else to focus on other than us! He got mas about that and told me that he has enough on his plate right now to deal with and then complained that "now I am putting this '********' on his plate too." I am even more confused now than I was... I just don't know what I have to try SO hard to get him to spend time with me. I guess he just wants to have seperate lives, yet still be together.

    Just a side note in case anyone was wondering... I am 26, he is 44. I am very mature for my age and the age difference has never been a problem. (Unless this is caused by age?) I am in shape and considered attractive by many people. I am out going and always smiling. I am not lazy and I try to do as much as I can in one day. I just don't get it......

    Happy Thanksgiving, right???

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    Quote Originally Posted by tstic364 View Post
    You know, he actually says this all the time. I really think he thinks it is OK to work as much as he does. Dang, I never knew it would be so hard to spend time with the one you love! Do you have any advice from a mans point of view?
    i wish i could give you a cut and dried answer to your dilema..sounds like you have made every attempt possible..he has got to want to change, just like a drinker or smoker..it sounds like he is putting no effort into the husband and wife relationship at all..but then i am not telling you anything you already know..you have probably already tried this approach,if not tell him you are happy with the material things you have..that you need a night out without the kids..he is a fireman so obviously he makes good money and can afford a day off from his other business interests..i lost a very good paying job 10 years ago and now i made 1/4 the money i used to..sure i pouted and felt sorry for myself for a while, but then i began to look at the things i had and felt grateful..there are thousands of men in worse situations than i was..sorry i probably wasn't much help, but sounds like you have exhausted all avenues..he has to make a move to change..good luck "tstic634"..
    a smart man learns from his mistakes..a wise man learns from the mistakes of others..

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