Feeling alone - family isn't supportive

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2003
Feeling alone - family isn't supportive
5
Sun, 11-16-2003 - 3:07pm
Hello,

My husband and I are in a difficult financial situation, and I am now pregnant with our fourth child. I am angry with my husband for leaving the teaching profession, althoug we have started our own business and doing what we've dreamed of. It's hard to leave a stable life for an unsure one. Unfortunately, I'm quite sure that our families will be upset that we have gotten ourselves into this situation (expecting another child), and my mind just reels thinking of all the things they may say/think about us and our decisions. Things I have already thought about. I am now into the second trimester, I really show now (I was quite slim before, so it's very noticable). Our friends in the community have been great (the very few who have found out), but I am not very happy about the pregnancy - the uncertainty in our lives and the medical condition that I now have (severe pain in the pelvis/spine called sacro-illiatic something or other is very debilitating). I don't really have anyone to share my feelings with, and my husband just seems to be oblivious to everything. I need a friend. Is anyone out there?
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2002
Sun, 11-16-2003 - 6:26pm
Yes yes yes! I'm out here, and so are lots of other friends you just haven't met yet. I can't stay long right now, but wanted to respond to your post ASAP. I'll come back later and write some more... for now, just wanted you to know you're not alone. Also, I believe there's a benefit or blessing to be received from every trial in our lives (a silver lining in every cloud?). Sometimes it's obvious, sometimes I have to look real hard to see it - but it's there. Also, I wouldn't worry what your family or friends might think. That's their problem, and this is YOUR life. Keep your chin up, and try to focus on the good things you have (or will have). Bless you...

Will write more later...

Msfit

                  &nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2002
Sun, 11-16-2003 - 10:46pm
More to previous post...

Your post reminds me of a time, about 18 years ago, when my then-DH and I were both laid off from our jobs, days before Christmas. We had been in the process of buying a house, and were also on a waiting list to adopt a baby. With the loss of both jobs, I felt our lives had been turned upside down and all of our dreams gone up in smoke...

Our real estate agent (also uncle) reminded us that life is full of these kinds of turns, and that if we put our lives on hold every time something like that happened, then we would never get anywhere. He was so right. Fast forward 18 years now, and it seems like the time was never RIGHT to buy that house, but we did anyway. The time was never right to adopt that baby boy, but we did anyway. The time was never right for either of us to go back to college, but we did anyway. And I've never regretted a moment of it.

Some of those years were the hardest years I'd ever endured, such as working full-time for minimum wage, and managing three paper routes, and raising a toddler while my DH was in college full-time. Or, a few years later as a newly-divorced single mom, living on student loans and welfare or a part-time job, putting myself through college, and raising a little boy in a town where I knew not one soul, when my house burned down. But those years also bring the sweetest memories. I treasure that college degree like it was made of gold, because of all the heartache and hardships I endured to get it. My ex-DH still lives in that house we bought, and it means just as much to him. Our son - the only child we've ever been blessed with - is the pride and joy of our lives.

Yeah, my family thought we were nuts, too. But you know what? They still think I'm nuts, and that I make poor decisions..., no matter what I've accomplished. I now own two homes, very nice vehicles (one of them a brand-new Harley woohoo!), have all of my old debts paid off (and making good progress on the new ones), and am married to the most wonderful man I've ever met (no matter that my family thinks he's dirt). My son is a junior in high school and a reasonably happy teenager, going through the throes of his first serious love, while juggling school and a full-time job.

So life goes on... The best we can do is to weigh all the information you have at that time, consider all the consequences and desires of your heart, and make the best decision that you know how. Makes no difference what others think... only what YOU think. Be happy in that. Look for all the blessings you have - three beautiful children and another on the way! I am sorry for the pain you must be going through in this pregnancy, but you have only one trimester to go.

I also lost my job about 6 weeks ago, and have launched full-time into a business that my DH and I started a few months ago. The uncertainty still gets to me... relying on DH solely for benefits (health care, his pension to keep us going during retirement, etc.), and letting go of the comfort and security of that regular paycheck. I don't know if this business is going to be enough, and may have to seek a regular job anyway. The longer I am out of work, the worse that looks on my resume - and that's tough to face, also. I'm scared to death, but at the same time I'm living life and loving it.

So hang in there - you're going to make it just fine. You know the saying, "When life throws you lemons, make lemonade!" I take this to mean that you don't have to suffer with the sourness of life's turns all the time. Of course it's going to be sour sometimes, and this will keep happening to you for the rest of your life. But you can sweeten it by staying flexible in how you deal with each turn, keep your eyes on the goal, and be observent for the blessings that come to you along the way - even if they are just the little things like a hug from your little ones at bedtime, the smile from a stranger, the fact that you have a roof over your heads while so many others go without.

Also... some thoughts on your DH's oblivion to your recent state-of-mind. It's my belief that men typically want to be the best providers they can for their families, and they want to "fix" things. Right now, this situation may seem overwhelming to him and he may not see a simple way to "fix" it. Therefore, he's avoiding the discomfort of displeasing you by seeming to ignore you. I've seen this happen soooo many times! Besides that, most of the men I've known are terrible at providing emotional support. Not that they don't love their sweethearts sincerely, they just don't know how to show the kind of support their women need most. It sounds trite, but you might pick up a copy of the book "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" and see if this helps your situation with him. It helped me bunches to understand how men and women communicate and support each other, and how to help my DH be more responsive and supportive of me, and me to him in the way he needed it most.

Meanwhile, please post back here and let us know how you're doing. There's a huge community of supportive, loving people in here from all walks of life. Sometimes this board moves so fast I can barely keep up, and sometimes (like now) it's very slow. Just keep checking back.

Best of luck to you and God's grace...

Msfit

                  &nbs

Avatar for wisdomtooth2002
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-14-2003
Mon, 11-17-2003 - 10:29am
Hi,

Sounds like you're worrying about a lot of things that either haven't happened and may never happen.

Let's start with "they think." Who is "they?" Is it your parents, siblings, friends, coworkers, the general public, Dear Abbey? Identify the "they" in your mind. Then ask yourself do "they" live with your choices 24/7? (nope)

This will help you put your fears into perspective. After all, the choices you make have a direct impact on you and your family, less so on parents, siblings, etc. Oh, they are entitled to their opinions, but you don't have to try to live up to their expectations, only your own.

Change is difficult. It doesn't matter if you had a 66-point plan with 700 separate, outlined steps. Actually doing something different takes sheer courage and a lot of staying power. And you know what? Even if you had kept your regular jobs, didn't have a 4th child, and did absolutely nothing different with your lives, someone would "disapprove." And I'd say...So what?

It sounds like you may have had different expectations of your husband and your family. I'd suggest you get some counseling to help sort through those issues - better late than never. Because now you're dealing not only with that baggage but all the baggage of an unexpected pregnancy and a lot of change. No one said you had to pretend nothing was different.

There is also still plenty of things within your control. Start with your attitude. You can wake up every day and begin the litnany of "what's wrong with my life" and I guarantee you'll end the day feeling just as miserable. Why not take the tact that you'll look for the blessings in your situation and view these changes as positive?

Start with your pregnancy. The bottom line is your child didn't ask to be conceived. You made choices that resulted in the pregnancy. You could have decided to take precautions or have your tubes tied (or Daddy snipped). But, whether you did or not, a child is on their way. You do have that choice for the future and you may want to PLAN for that after this baby is born.

I'm being a little harsh here because your child dependent solely on you for his or her well being. Don't allow this child to come into the world resented. (Just step back and look at how you feel about your perceived judgement by your own family. If your family resents your decisions, how would you expect a child to feel if they enter the world being resented from the start?) Take the attitude now that he or she is a gift and will bring added joy to your life. Any child deserves that much from their parents.

And stop giving away your power by allowing what "they" think dictate your attitude - about yourself, your marriage, your family, your business, or any other aspect of your life. Let "them" own their feelings and opinions. They don't live inside your skin. You do.

Good luck,

Wisdomtooth

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2003
Wed, 11-19-2003 - 6:08pm
Hello Msfit and Wisdomtooth,

Thanks so much for your words of wisdom and support. I've been feeling more upbeat, and I am aware that so many other people face much greater hardships in their lives. I am very thankful for my three beautiful children, and certainly would not resent my baby-to-be. I do believe that children are gifts from God, and that s/he must believe that we are OK parents to grant us another blessing.

The hardest part about the situation with my husband is trust - and perhaps counselling would be the answer (my only concern is childcare during sessions). He is currently seeing a counsellor for a lot of old family issues. I'm afraid he's talking about more than those things though, and I've told him that I feel as though he isn't talking through things with me because he has someone else to talk to. We'll see.

Anyway, I will try to remember that this is my life, and nobody else is going to live with the consequences of the choices I make.

Thanks again for your support. I will be back,

me
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2003
Sat, 11-22-2003 - 4:25pm
I think we have to see certain phases of our lives as 'rough patches' and really realize that they are only temporary. And luckily your dh has his education, that can't be taken away from him if he eventually has to go back to teaching. Taking a chance on your own business is the best thing to do. If it is something you always wanted to do and then never had the nerve to try it would have been worse than taking a crack at it. I also believe that any type of chronic pain really wears you out fast too. I hope you are getting treatment for this. I think that many women really can't live with the dissaproval of others, especially their family. Men don't seem to have this problem as much. If your parents put you down be sure to tell them that you are proud of your husband for having the guts to start his own business, and try to make sure he is within earshot to hear this.