How do I help my husband?
#1
I need help learning how to properly communicate with my husband. I would like some perspective from the men here (as well as the ladies).

The biggest thing is that I don’t want to control my husband or usurp his role as a leader and provider. I want to help him be the best man he can possibly be. Unfortunately, he sometimes doesn’t take on that role, and I am left with the choice to take matters into my own hands, or else let crucial things slide into disarray.

My husband was raised in a very dysfunctional family with a narcissistic mother who controlled everything. Therefore, his approach to problems is to ignore it and hope it goes away, which is how we got into the dilemma with his brother stealing almost 100k from our business. I DO NOT want to step up and be a leader in this family, but when my husband doesn’t address critical issues, I have no other choice.

When I bring this issue up to my husband, he becomes very offended and accuses me of not trusting him and of betraying him. He has always been extremely sensitive to any criticism brought to him by me, no matter how nicely I address it. I’ll admit that I haven’t always brought it up nicely, but it’s gotten to the point where I don’t bring up issues at all anymore because it’s more peaceful to just let things slide into chaos than talk to him about it and have him react with anger and the silent treatment.

We didn’t have this problem when we were dating, and we have only been married for 4 months. I don’t want this to become a pattern. I have asked him upfront what I can do to help him be a better man and he says he doesn’t know.

It is obvious to me that I am not the kind of woman who inspires him to be the best man he can be, and that I am not a woman worth doing his best for. I try my hardest to be a good wife, to attend to his needs, to keep a clean house, to keep my mouth shut, etc. I guess it’s not good enough and I am worried.


St. Mary of Egypt, Ora Pro Nobis!







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#2
(08-27-2019, 08:59 PM)SacraCor714 Wrote: I need help learning how to properly communicate with my husband. I would like some perspective from the men here (as well as the ladies).

The biggest thing is that I don’t want to control my husband or usurp his role as a leader and provider. I want to help him be the best man he can possibly be. Unfortunately, he often fails to take on that role, and I am often left with the choice to take matters into my own hands, or else let crucial things slide into disarray.

My husband was raised in a very dysfunctional family with a narcissistic mother who controlled everything. Therefore, his approach to problems is to ignore it and hope it goes away, which is how we got into the dilemma with his brother stealing almost 100k from our business. I DO NOT want to step up and be a leader in this family, but when my husband fails to address critical issues, I have no other choice. I handle all of our finances now.

When I bring this issue up to my husband, he becomes very offended and accuses me of not trusting him and of betraying him. He has always been extremely sensitive to any criticism brought to him by me, no matter how nicely I address it. I’ll admit that I haven’t always brought it up nicely, but it’s gotten to the point where I don’t bring up issues at all anymore because it’s more peaceful to just let things slide into chaos than talk to him about it and have him react with anger and the silent treatment.

We didn’t have this problem when we were dating, and we have only been married for 4 months. I don’t want this to become a pattern. I have asked him upfront what I can do to help him be a better man and he says he doesn’t know.

It is obvious to me that I am not the kind of woman who inspires him to be the best man he can be, and that I am not a woman worth doing his best for. I try my hardest to be a good wife, to attend to his needs, to keep a clean house, to keep my mouth shut, etc. I guess it’s not good enough and I am worried.
Whowlwind romance.  Lots of fun, tho.
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This happens all the time. All the time.  Smart people take their time and talk all of this stuff over before they get married.  The rest of us, including me, don't talk about this stuff and get quite a surprise - life will not be working the way we had planned.
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Look at his day to day work/life.  Is there something he does that you would be better at?  Then offer to take it over.  If he accepts, then, a few weeks later, ask if he needs any help in another area.  Many, many, many, many family businesses require the women to do the books, the insurance, the banking, the payroll, A/P and A/R, taxes and often handle most telephone work.  He gets to to do the fun stuff like train horses.  It happens in so many difference businesses that it is actually a way to run family businesses.  It is normal.    Think of it this way:  Someone has to do it, and since you are better with the money, it needs to be you.
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Or, make a deal with him.  You will do all the lousy office paperwork stuff, including the money, but you get to stay home with the kids, no outside jobs.  This allows him to focus on the core of the business of training horses and bringing in new business, and you get to stay home with the children, work around the children's schedules, be a housewife AND an essential part of his business.  Essential because if you don't do this work, the business will fail'.  Your contribution is essential, raising your children is essential, so if he wants to succeed he needs you.
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Remember, there is only so much a person can do all by themselves, not when they also have a wife and baby on the way.  Most people are not good at everything, it is normal.  God gave us man and wife.  Heck, Joan Rivers told women to get involved in their husbands business to build the marriage.  God Love Them but some men suck at keeping the books.
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Just be sure to take some time to talk about something other than the business and the kids.  Talk politics.  Talk music.  Talk about different ideas within the Faith, talk sports, movies, but do not talk about only the business and the kids.  Nuture your marriage, make sure you are sharing and caring.
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My late husband was a terrific salesman who had a nack of finding the right product at the right time.  He was great at what he did.  He did not, however, ever, ever balance a checkbook.  He could not manage to pay his personal bills on time, much less the business bills, so I did both.   He did not to ever deal with business insurance or OSHA, or 401K or IRA.  My husband never, in all the years, processed paperwork or wrote a paycheck.
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#3
(08-27-2019, 08:59 PM)SacraCor714 Wrote: I need help learning how to properly communicate with my husband. I would like some perspective from the men here (as well as the ladies).

The biggest thing is that I don’t want to control my husband or usurp his role as a leader and provider. I want to help him be the best man he can possibly be. Unfortunately, he sometimes doesn’t take on that role, and I am left with the choice to take matters into my own hands, or else let crucial things slide into disarray.

My husband was raised in a very dysfunctional family with a narcissistic mother who controlled everything. Therefore, his approach to problems is to ignore it and hope it goes away, which is how we got into the dilemma with his brother stealing almost 100k from our business. I DO NOT want to step up and be a leader in this family, but when my husband doesn’t address critical issues, I have no other choice.

When I bring this issue up to my husband, he becomes very offended and accuses me of not trusting him and of betraying him. He has always been extremely sensitive to any criticism brought to him by me, no matter how nicely I address it. I’ll admit that I haven’t always brought it up nicely, but it’s gotten to the point where I don’t bring up issues at all anymore because it’s more peaceful to just let things slide into chaos than talk to him about it and have him react with anger and the silent treatment.

We didn’t have this problem when we were dating, and we have only been married for 4 months. I don’t want this to become a pattern. I have asked him upfront what I can do to help him be a better man and he says he doesn’t know.

It is obvious to me that I am not the kind of woman who inspires him to be the best man he can be, and that I am not a woman worth doing his best for. I try my hardest to be a good wife, to attend to his needs, to keep a clean house, to keep my mouth shut, etc. I guess it’s not good enough and I am worried.

Hello SaraCor714,
Based on nothing other than what you have written, I have a couple of rhetorical questions:

You mention wanting to help him be the best man he can possibly be and that he sometimes doesn’t take on that role', who decides what is the 'best' he can be and what that role looks like? You or him? 

You're left with no choice but to take matters into your own hands before they fall into chaos and disarray. Who defines chaos and disarray? Your definition may differ greatly from his. 

Trust is of paramount importance in any relationship and from a male perspective and an albeit brief explanation of your situation from yourself, it appears that you're understandably struggling to trust that he will act accordingly (perhaps to differing parameters) and that his overbearing upbringing, dominated by a controlling matriarch, leaves him reluctant to take on responsibilities for fear of criticism and because he knows that the woman in his life will eventually take over anyway, confirming what he already feels about himself - useless, incapable, not a real man etc...

As to the solution, how involved are you both in your parish? To me, the over-riding impression I had was that your fella needs good, solid male influences in his life (I recognise 'good' and 'solid' are subjective terms.) Does your church/parish organisation have a men's group? Somewhere that he could be mentored through prayer, fellowship and ultimately though osmosis by men that he respects, rather than the 'correction' coming from you, which may merely confirm what his upbringing has taught him? Moreover, (and forgive this question but it is rhetorical) how comfortable would you be if he was to really take the lead in your relationship? What if he decided in his capacity as 'head of the family' to take you in a direction you hadn't necessarily accounted for? Would you trust that he's acting with your best interests at heart, or would you 'pull rank' and correct him as his mother would have?

Please forgive the direct nature of this response but it appears that you're both in danger of trying to prove the same thing; namely that he's incapable of taking responsibility for his own situation and that he needs his woman (you or his mum) to do it for him. However flattering to you in the short term, this would ultimately be damaging in the long term and even more so when children are involved.
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#4
You have to find the right moment to address these issues like when he's particularly happy. You have to bring up the issue and your main concern of his ignoring problems from developing into a set pattern. If you don't do this soon, the pattern will persist and you will be powerless to do anything about it.
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