Labor

My husband moved most of our funds to his new account. He’s generously leaving me 1k to ‘do what I want with.’ I haven’t had the heart to ask him, yet, if he’s expecting me to use it to pay for a work wardrobe, gas and whatever other expenses I have this year, or if my expenses will continue to come out of what were joint funds, regardless of his status as breadwinner.

I put my life on the line four times to bring the children that are the light of his life into the world. Endured months of sickness and years of sleep deprivation. Lost my stellar metabolism and ended up with permanently damaged abdominal muscles. Sacrificed my education and career prospects, which were better than his when we were first dating. Set aside my dreams and my hobbies and my social life.

He thinks I could have pushed myself harder so that I didn’t fall this far behind. While he spent years carelessly sacrificing my sleep to his insomnia and ignoring what I said about the changes I needed.

Apparently because I’m choosing to leave when he doesn’t want me to leave, all of that was worth approximately 1k, plus a begrudgingly spent 16k on a new vehicle, because he feels obligated to make sure the mother of his children can get employment. 17k for 16 years doing my best to give him the life he wanted at great cost to myself.

I guess including this year that brings it to 17, that’ll be approximately 1k per year. Stellar wages for the effort I put in. Guess anything less than a lifetime is a largely worthless when it comes to “women’s work.”

4 thoughts on “Labor

  1. My heart aches in this situation. This is hard, nearly realizing your dreams at last, but still feeling constrained…

    Putting a monetary value on something that is certainly invaluable is nigh impossible…

    And I suppose for him it must feel as though he is actually *paying* you to leave him, and the kids… and perhaps, awfully, that his whole life is falling apart… Perhaps then, he feels his contribution is generous… or maybe it’s all he can afford…

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    1. I’m not expecting to realize my dreams. None of them are terribly likely to occur for years, if ever.

      I think it’s difficult for people to wrap their minds around the fact that I’m literally saving myself from an existence that was so personally miserable for me, so profoundly unhappy, that my brain could no longer even remember what happy felt like.

      I’m simply bitter at another reminder that I spent the best years of my life suffering for net loss, not gain.

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  2. Yes, he feels like his contribution is generous. He takes for granted everything I did as simply what I was supposed to do – instead of it being a generous gift and sacrifice on my part. His life was improved by our marriage and family. He continued to do what he would have had to do while single (work to pay the bills) but did not have to give anything up, instead gaining significantly. Having children to provide for also put him on his mettle and brought out ambition to make something of himself.

    I twisted myself into a pretzel prioritizing his wants and needs. I lost the best years of my life for building a future, along with my health, and my sanity. Traded almost everything that made me happy for an existence that left me profoundly unhappy. And everything I did is being viewed and treated as if it’s worthless now simply because I became unwilling to gift/sacrifice my entire life.

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