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17 Jan 2004

Am I wrong
I have been with my husband for 18 years, 14 of them married. We have 3 children and we make each other happy and love each other. The problem is my husband does not include me in decisions about our future, business or financial things. I am not stupid and run my own business from home. He is very close to his brother and sister and runs a business with them. We have had major fights regarding him making decisions and my not knowing anything.

The most recent blow up was about a house which we were all involved in building as a holiday spot. I have been against it from day one and as usual have been ignored. At various points along the way as this house has gone up I have said that if his gay sisters girlfriend gets the contract for the cupboards I will freak. I am an Interior decorator and have never done family work other than my own. This is the family rule so my husband said that it would not happen. Guess who did the cupboards? And now I feel that he never takes my opinions seriously. His family largely ignores my existance so I asked him to move.

The problem is that I know deep down he does love me and I love him. We have always made each other happy and enjoy each other when we are together. I also know that he not the same around his family and he tries to keep me seperate. He says he just likes his work and me and kids seperate. It feels like Im not good enough. Now hes devestated that I asked him to leave as I cant live with a man who has no respect for me and my views or rights as an equal in this marriage. His mom says Im right and his brother and sister think Im difficult.

Am I being difficult. I have a nice house, no financial worries, I drive a nice car. I feel it means nothing if he cant see me as an equal. Everyone is telling me Im ungrateful
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Dear Ooze,
You're certainly not being ungrateful, in the sense that you owe no gratitude at all towards a man who persists in treating you with so little respect. Yes, there are grounds for being grateful towards life itself, for, apart from that particular problem, you're in a much pleasanter situation than 98 % of others.
It is always risky to give away control over what you will cosider meaningful in your life, to anyone else. You are and should be in charge of the decision as to whether what you have and, much more important, what you do, is meaningful. As soon as one decides that :"Nothing is meaningful or significant unless X loves me, or Y approves" we are at high risk for creating unnecessary misery.
You are at the very least his equal, and, because you don't ignore or belittle him, to that extent his superior. You ought to know and feel equal under your own stam --- your equality is not something which he can graciously give or withhold. Your equality does not belong to him !
It sounds as if he is more insecure than he wants to appear, so he places excessive importance on the opinions of others, and on how he might appear to them. It sounds as if he feels compelled to appease his brother and sister, perhaps because of his dependencies on them in the business field. But don't let his sense of inferiority and insecurity infect you.
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