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The working woman

Discussion in 'Married Couples' started by bluegreysky, Nov 28, 2017.

  1. bluegreysky

    bluegreysky Can't adult today.

    +290
    United States
    Christian
    Married
    I read about 2 or 3 years back that 40% of American households have a working woman. I don’t know if those households all contain a man or if single moms are factored in... the point is, the scenario where the wife can’t just stay at home is getting more and more common.

    I never sought to be a stay-at-Home wife. I didn’t really want kids. So frankly, that idea sounds totally boring.
    If I had married a man with money and drive for success, I would have taken the opportunity to use my free time to learn Yoga, surf, maybe train for CrossFit and most importantly of all... volunteer with a Church.

    Instead I married a man who was diagnosed with PTSD and released from the military just months before I met him, and our entire 20’s as we dated and eventually married, he was going to school off and on and trying to figure out how to get healthy and get a good future he liked. He always got a paycheck from the VA. For 6 of those years, I had a job at a bank and my paycheck matched his since I was just a teller. Where we were foolish was with credit cards. We lived well outside our means when it came to clothing and dates and vacation... but I always needed a job. And always had one.
    And because being a student paid him instead of costing him, I never felt like it was unfair. We were equals.
    It’s just that he was going to get some degree and the Va was going to place him in a job and I was going to work my way up like my father had.

    Neither happened.

    Now I’m working at Target 4 days a week and a shop in the tourist district 2 long days a week, totaling around 50 hours with no benefits and no vacation time. And only one day off. I miss my 9-5 so much it might as well count as a bad breakup. Pretty much all the songs written about someone who pines for a lost lover could apply to me and my lost 9-5.

    My husband, on the other hand, has dropped out and accepts only his basic VA check. He won’t get a job. He won’t go back to school. He talks about starting a business himself but his ideas are too poorly organized right now.

    And even though 40% of us are in this same boat, I feel very alone.

    I’m fighting hard to regain a 9-5. I’m also fighting to keep Target because it’s technically seasonal and set to end after Christmas. If they keep me, it will be a little mini triumph but a failure at the same time... I don’t want To go through all of 2018 with two jobs, late nights and no vacation unless I forfeit the money. With a chapter 7 looming on the horizon, getting back into banking is nearly impossible. My only hope now is a call center type job with a non-bank company.

    That Johnny cash song “hurt” plays on repeat in my head.
     
  2. Darkhorse

    Darkhorse just horsing around

    +1,567
    United States
    Presbyterian
    Married
    US-Republican
    Obviously, you both need help; he for his PTSD and you for your "carrying the weight" for two.

    While I have no personal experience with the VA, I suspect that real help must come from elsewhere. A knowledgeable Christian counselor should know where to get effective PTSD help, and assist both of you with managing these difficulties.

    This will not last, but it can seem very dark while it does...
     
  3. NothingIsImpossible

    NothingIsImpossible Well-Known Member

    +1,992
    Christian
    Married
    Many I've met seem to struggle because of the spouse who has come back with PTSD and ends up living off of the VA check (and the other spouses paycheck). Its just not an easy thing to do. Though I am curious how much someone gets from the VA. I'd hope its more then you can get from SSI, I only get $700 a month. Which is nothing to live on either. Honestly VA should give more money if its close that amount.

    I have no real advice except keep praying, try getting counselling and always have hope in God about the future. Even if it seems bleak. Mi wife struggles with seeing the future given she only works part time and I can't work. We have a good support system though around us from friends to family and the pastor.

    Also just as a side note bankruptcy is always a last ditch resort. While it does have some down sides at first, at least you can start fresh with no money owed. And it will stay on your record that you filed for bankruptcy (for about 7 years). Also if you own a home, probably not the best thing then. In my parents case they almost took the one car but it wasn't worth enough for them to go after so they got to keep it.
     
  4. RedPonyDriver

    RedPonyDriver Professional Pot Stirrer

    +2,272
    Christian
    Married
    US-Democrat
    There is mental health help available at the VA. He needs to reach out. I have a friend who is a social worker/counselor and works with vets who have PTSD. Let me see what I can find out
     
  5. bluegreysky

    bluegreysky Can't adult today.

    +290
    United States
    Christian
    Married
    He already sees the VA. He has a counselor, though she isn’t really “for” us because he painted me in a bad light. He has a few meds. He’s been working with them for years I just don’t know if he applies it at home. He needs a Christian counselor.
     
  6. Spikey

    Spikey Well-Known Member

    366
    +540
    United Kingdom
    Atheist
    Married
    UK-Labour
    Sorry to hear your story, I think first and foremost his mental health should be of the upmost concern. It sounds like a vicious circle to me, being out of the world of work as he is won't help the situation.
    Also a concern would be him painting you in a bad light, what did you mean by that?

    Hope you are okay.
     
  7. Ana the Ist

    Ana the Ist Aggressively serene!

    +2,840
    United States
    Atheist
    Married
    That's a Nine Inch Nails song...Johnny Cash just covered it.
     
  8. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Well-Known Member

    +1,416
    Anabaptist
    Married
    If he's been seeing the VA counsellor for years, then he needs a new counsellor. I said this in the other thread, but seriously, it's time to check this out. EMDR. It's a very, very successful approach to treating PTSD. I am a social worker, and I have seen people before and after accessing this therapy. It should only take about 10 sessions, give or take one or two. Once he has dealt with his PTSD, he can then move on to counselling for marriage.

    In marriage counselling, he will need to focus on whether he paints you in a bad light as a result of negativity bias, or whether there is just cause to express his perceptions. His perceptions may have merit, and may not... but that will need to be teased apart by someone who is well trained in positive psychology. A Christian counsellor may or may not have heard of these things, and often Christian counselling focuses on forcing each to take responsibility for issues. But that is not always feasible. So choose a counsellor wisely.

    As others have said, though, treating PTSD is the most important. If he does not pursue treatment that works, then imo, he may be using his PTSD as an excuse to not engage in life and to nurse his negativity bias (if he actually has one).
     
  9. ParentofChildren

    ParentofChildren Wanderer

    308
    +27
    Methodist
    Married
    US-Others
    *******
    You are thoughtful, +, constructive, & loving. I hope your husband recovers.
     
  10. Endeavourer

    Endeavourer Well-Known Member

    573
    +292
    United States
    Christian
    Married
    @tall73,
    It seems that her husband himself does not believe his is incapable of working. This is likely a good part of why the OP is so resentful of having to support him.
     
  11. Tropical Wilds

    Tropical Wilds Lord, beer me strength...

    +308
    United States
    Married
    US-Others
    Wanting to start a business is not a reflection of one’s capability to work. When I was at my sickest, I wanted to start a business because I thought working on my own terms would be the solution to managing my disability while still bringing in income.

    It’s not.
     
  12. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband

    +1,089
    Christian
    Married

    Yes, I think that is often a thought process folks in that position go through. The reality is that stress often complicates conditions as well, and a great number of businesses even in good conditions fail.
     
  13. Tropical Wilds

    Tropical Wilds Lord, beer me strength...

    +308
    United States
    Married
    US-Others
    That and, to get a business started, you have to work more, harder, active hours than if you went to work. When you’re the only one in your business, it all depends on you. There’s no disability accommodations, taking paid or even unpaid time off to manage your illness then diving back in to a paycheck when you return. It seems like your solution is to create your business and your hours and work on your terms... It makes things so much worse and the stakes so much higher. In fact, disability counseling talks about this phenomenon among those who are disabled.
     
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