Am I being unreasonble?

lindakimyMay 4, 2010

I have a question and I simply don't know who to ask. I've considered all my friends and family and I guess I just don't want to go to people who know us. Most of them would feel awkward choosing between us and family is difficult enough as it is. Outside input is needed!

Here's the situation: My husband is 71 and I am 60. A few years ago he began having a lot of problems at work - disagreements with his boss, bad reports, etc. He wanted out and I felt that he was probably going to be out one way or another. He has worked for a lot of years although neither one of us has any sort of retirement plan except for social security. Nevertheless, I suggested that he retire (rather than get fired) since he would be getting SS and since I had no pension anyway I would just continue to work. That was 5 years ago. At least one of us could enjoy retirement.

I gave up my own free lance graphic design business and got a job for a printer that offered insurance since that was the biggest expense for me as a self employed person and since I could no longer be on my husband's insurance if he retired. He has Medicare and a supplement and I have a really crummy insurance where I work. But at least I have one.

My job is not very well paid. And...about a year and a half ago the company decided to cut all the employees back to 32 hours from 40. So I took a 20% cut in pay. There is no talk about going back to 40 hours and why should they? We still have to get the work done but now we do it 20% cheaper.

There is a lot about my job that I don't like. And, I'll admit, I have griped a lot to my husband. I thought I could let my hair down. At least it lets off steam.

However...my husband has decided that I need a different job. He got together with a guy he met at the bar he spends time in every afternoon. This guy works for a major corporation (if I told you the name you would know it). He used to be connected with HR somehow although he is not now. My husband sat down with me one evening and out of the blue said, "I wasn't going to tell you about this until it was a done deal, but..." Then he told me he had been in touch with this guy about trying to find a higher paying job for me at that big company. He wanted to invite the guy over and talk about it.

I wasn't terribly excited. Does anybody understand that? Why would it bother me that he wanted to do this all without talking with me? But I said o.k. Invite him over; I'll cook dinner. And I did. He asked for my resume and I sent it to him. I talked with him about how I felt I wasn't being paid what I was worth and that the company does not give raises (I didn't know that when I hired on). I talked about the stupid way the company is run: it's a family company and "practical" is not high on the list. Still, my job is quite secure and very easy. I can wear whatever I choose and I don't have to interact with the public (a big plus). If I want time off I need only tell them.

So. The guy sent a job posting. It was a few cents more per hour than mine but it was answering phones to hear complaints all day. I was not really excited. I didn't respond.

Then he sent another one. This one pays about twice what I make but it is for internet design on a fairly high level and I don't know anything about web design at all. I told my husband that I was sure I couldn't qualify for it and he got very angry. He snarled that I had learned new programs before and that I could do it again. I didn't respond.

I stifled myself and a few days passed. Today I got an email from the guy saying that he had sent in my resume and applied for the job for me. !!

This evening I tried to talk with my husband about this. I told him that I was not comfortable with this guy sending in my resume for jobs I had not wanted to apply for. I asked him to put himself in my place and imagine if I had gotten a friend of mine to send his resume in for a job he did not feel qualified for. He said (with attitude) that HE would have been GRATEFUL. That is SO not the case. I know him. He would have been livid.

I told him that I really wanted to be the one in charge of my life at least to this little extent - let me decide which jobs to apply for. He was angry. I said I would be happy if his friend would continue to look for prospects but I would like to be the one to decide which to apply for. He turned on his heel and went off to bed.

O.K. Am I being unreasonable? Am I crazy for feeling that my husband is manipulating me? Or that the guy is overstepping the bounds?

I know how I feel about this but I could use a reality check. Am I ungrateful? Or are they messing with me?

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asolo

"He got together with a guy he met at the bar he spends time in every afternoon."

Clue number one.

"...he wanted to do this all without talking with me..."

Clue number two.

"...got an email from the guy saying that he had sent in my resume and applied for the job for me. "

Clue number three.

"He said (with attitude)........................."

How many "clues" does it take to get you focused?

You've been here a while, Lindakimy. Considering all youv'e read and commented on over the years, how can this possibly be mysterious to you?

Your husband is being a self-interested jerk and your husband's friend is waaaaaay out of bounds. Whether or not their intentions are pure, their actions are intrusive and offensive. Stand your ground with both of these imbeciles.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 10:07PM
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lindakimy

Thank you! I'm so glad you responded. You sure do cut to the chase. As I said, I do know how I feel. Yeah. I do know. I'm just not really sure how it's going to work out. Or if there is some way I haven't thought of to approach it what might avoid huge damage.

I've put up with a lot over the years (far more than I've posted - be grateful!) and I could keep doing that but I have a feeling this may be an unavoidable confrontation. I don't look forward to it. That's why I welcome your comments.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 10:27PM
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asolo

From your post, clearly this is not of your making. However, more to the point, what has been visited upon you is quite intolerable. Given that the events have already occurred, yes, a confrontation is unavoidable. From what you've described, I'd take it to both of them proudly.

My opinion would be: Don't take any prisoners at home or abroad on this one. Drop the hammer on both of them and don't cease your blows upon either until they get the damned message.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 10:58PM
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lindakimy

OMG! THAT sounds like great fun!! How do I do it? I thought I was being pretty bold just broaching the subject with my husband this evening. That should tell you something - Lord, I'm lame. If all goes according to history, no more will be said until I bring it up again. Of course, there may be additional job applications or communications with HR in my name!

Just tell me - and get specific - how do I drop the hammer?

BTW...I have already made a threat: if that guy changed a word of my resume the sh!t WILL hit the fan and I WILL point it at him. My husband said (a little too quickly) that he hadn't changed anything. If he did....I will redefine hissy fit.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 11:13PM
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asolo

Given what you've described as having already occurred, and the gravity of it, I see no alternative but a direct approach. And I mean to both, individually -- and clearly. Both will back-peddle and try to make it seem like no big deal. Like they're just trying to do you a favor. However, both, without your agreement, have taken your very identity forward in representation to the entire rest of the world. If they don't understand how intrusive, presumptive, and impermissible that is, now's the time to tell them.

You know them. You have words. You can do this. I would prepare your statements and also prepare your rebuttals for the predictably stupid things they'll bring forward to make it seem like they didn't do anything wrong and they can't understand why you're so up upset. Don't leave them any wiggle room. From what you've described, their points of view will be quite predictable. Your statements in refutation should be easy to imagine and have well-rehearsed. Sew them up in rhetorical sacks and throw them in the Seine.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 11:38PM
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lindakimy

Oh, yes. Husband did insist that they were HELPING me. I was just being stupid and not seeing that they were GOOD to me.

BS. Yep. BS.

Well, I did let husband know that I was not best pleased. He hasn't gone to bed that early in ages. I don't know that he will change anything...maybe, if he thinks it would hurt to cut off my "chance to find a better job". I can picture him just telling the other guy to stop. Just stop.

The other guy...I am thinking I will email him and tell him not to send my resume unless I approve. That seems kinda tame. Got any thoughts??

The problem is that I am so pathologically UNconfrontational. I try every way in the world to put up with stuff. But I don't have any ideas about how to stand up. And I think I should about now.

The thing is, at this point I don't think I will be content if they just back off. Yes, they should stop co-opting my life. Yes, they should let me decide. But if they just quit (because I am an ungrateful B!TCH) then it just stops and I don't get to make a point. I think I would like to make something go BOOM!

Kidding!

Not.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2010 at 11:53PM
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popi_gw

Linda I can see why you would be annoyed, but perhaps the new job will be better than the one you have now.

Perhaps your hubbie thought he was helping and was pleased about the opportunity he had created for you.

Just another way to look at things.

Be very careful that you are not giving up a good opportunity no matter how it eventuated.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2010 at 1:32AM
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