Mixed Feelings When I Need To Be Happy For Her... HELP QUICK!

This morning my wife unofficially found out that she's getting a rather big promotion, with a commensurate pay raise!

I am super-happy for her, and ultra-proud of her!  This is something she's been working really hard for and it's finally paid off!  The extra money would take the strain off our finances, and would relieve a lot of stress that's been building up in the family over it.  However...

In the back of my mind, that nasty little voice is reminding me that it also means she wouldn't have to worry so much about money if she decided to move out immediately.  It's ruining everything.

QUICK!  Help me shut that voice up, so I can be as happy for her about this as I really want to be...  I've got about half an hour before I get home!  HELP!



Could you say to your wife

Could you say to your wife exactly what you've said here?  That is, get the issue out in the open.  

Pbartender's picture

I could... But not NOW!

I could...  But not NOW!  Now, I need to keep my mouth shut about it.  It won't turn out being a happy conversation by any means, and carries a heavy chance of making things worse, based on past experience.

Now is for celebration and congratulations.



OK, well if you know what you

OK, well if you know what you need to do and want to do, just do it!  Faking things is hard but not impossible.

Once the initial buzz is

Once the initial buzz is over, please do talk to your wife.  I would be thrilled to have my husband express to me that he feels he needs me and feels vulnerable sometimes.  

Pbartender's picture

Eh... We'll see...

Eh...  We'll see...

The last time I tried that, it ended with that last thread I posted here.

I don't need to fake my happiness or pride about this...  I just need to keep the doubt from getting in the way.



I believe that you're truly

I believe that you're truly happy for your wife (and kudos to you for that!).  The faking has to do with hiding your other feelings.  

Tell her you are happy for

Tell her you are happy for her and proud of her, but stomp that little voice, don't kill her joy about this, that conversation surely will do that, and it will another thing that she will have against you.  Having more money MAY make it easier for her to move out but that can't be THE only reason she hasn't.  I can financially support myself and kids and afford to buy my own home without any help from my H, YET I am still here. Somedays I want it to be over so bad but I always always think about my kids and they keep me here.  I have SO many mixed feelings, some days I hate my life and my husband, and others I don't....  she probably has some very mixed emotions too

Pbartender's picture


Done and done.

I've got the overwhelming urge to give her a big hug and kiss... Probably wouldn't be any more helpful than indulging that voice.



Go for it!

I don't think you can go wrong with a hug and a kiss.  It may mean more to her than you know.

Ummm, maybe no....

My DexH always wanted a hug and a kiss for everything (as a reassurance that I was there for him)  -- and I saw it as a way for him to jump in there and get what HE wanted. Just a thought -- that you can go wrong with a hug and a kiss.

Pbartender's picture

Yeah...  Kind of what I'd

Yeah...  Kind of what I'd been thinking.  I split the difference and gave her a quick, "friendly" hug as a part of the congratulations.  She seemed a little uncertain, but okay with it.  She didn't dodge it, at least.  :P




Friendly hug is great idea! I always wanted a "best friend" out of my husband first. When I got more non-sexual, low-touch friendship actions, I was more open to his touching way of relating.

I totally agree with

I totally agree with funnyfarm.  Let her have her proud moment without raining on her parade.  It seems that most of the ADHD spouses think that we non-ADHD spouses are naggers and complain far to much.  In the days ahead, there may be a more opportune time to bring up these feelings and insecurities.   

SP PB, how did it go ?  Were

SP PB, how did it go ?  Were you able to share her joy and not share your worry ?  My H is insecure about things pertaining to me, and it drives me nuts, no one else would ever look at him and think he is insecure he hides it well from everyone except me. He always takes pleasure from me about things both small or big, if i color my hair he can't say it looks nice because he is wondering Who is she coloring her hair for, ME dumb ass I don't like being grey, if I make some big accomplishment he can never be happy for me, can't be happy for anyone actually always seems to be jealous or find some negative thing to say about anyone doing something good for them, like somehow it lessens him even when it has nothing to do with him...its a very unattractive quality in a person

Pbartender's picture

As well as can be expected...

It went about as well as can be expected.  If anything, I had a hard time holding back how excited and proud I was for her about this...  I was a little worried I might take it a little too far.  We had a little celebration, ordered some inexpensive take-out (she agreed to a proper celebration later, once we've got the spare cash for it), and spent a quiet evening with her modestly bragging, me proudly complimenting her, and both of us laughing at all the texts she was getting from her co-workers (they officially posted it early in the evening).

So, I think it went okay.

Later, I woke up in the middle of the night and had a little bit of a freak-out, but then I got it out and got over it and that was okay, too.



Good going. Sounds like it

Good going. Sounds like it was a nice evening.

If she REALLY wanted out she would find a way, with or without this promotion, regardless if money is what she says is the only thing keeping you all under the same roof, so don't let it fester in your mind. good job.

Can you leave her a brief

Can you leave her a brief note telling her that you're happy for her accomplishments? I would've been thrilled at one point for a token of acknowledgement. 


First, I am very impressed

First, I am very impressed that you would admit that you're feeling threatened by this. You should be proud of yourself for that.

Second, I can relate to this in a very real way. I haven't worked (other than a short stint as a cashier at Wal-mart...pretty much only as a way to piss off my DH) for the majority of our 15 year marriage. We have a son that is special needs and we agreed when we got married I would stay home with him. My DH about lost it when I went to work at Wal-mart, and eventually let it get the best of him and he was convinced I was going to leave him. Me working equates IN HIS MIND ONLY to me taking steps to leave him.

I just got my first full time job, benefits and all, in March. I had to. He had a breakdown, was abusing alcohol and self medicating, and lost his job. He got another job, but it covers the bills...I HAVE to work. But, that's beside the point. He isn't very good at 'faking' it either...and it is obvious to me quite often that he's not handling me working too well. DO NOT TELL YOUR WIFE YOU'RE THREATENED BY HER PROMOTION. I am telling you that from MY stand point and being in the situation that she is in, in a way. I don't want my husband to be threatened by my job, but IT IS HIS ISSUE AND NOT MINE! This is YOUR issue...not your wife's...and you cannot take away from her the hard work she's done to get where she is and you have to deal with it and LET IT GO. I can assure you, no amount of money in the world (or lack thereof) would make me go or stay...his behavior alone decides that. I would bet that it has never crossed her mind "oh now I can leave him and not have to worry so much about money"...and you're making a HUGE mistake if you operate under the assumption that she has. The little comments I hear "you're going to find you some other man and leave me" are comments I will never forget...if you're not the type to do things such as that, if you are someone who truly values your marriage vows and has put in a LOT of hard work to make your marriage work, then these kinds of comments are a slap in the face. Even if he came to me and said "I'm worried that now that you're working you'll leave me" it would make me feel guilty, although I might somewhere deep down appreciate his honesty and vulnerability. I might even feel like he was making, yet again, everything about HIM.

You're an adult...she's your wife...she got a promotion. Nothing more. This isn't about you...this isn't her magical way out. This is just a reward for a job well done. Swallow your fears, have a little more faith, and plan a very nice 'celebration' dinner for her...and LET IT GO. Once you're able to face these kinds of things without somehow requiring her to 'fix' it for you, in my opinion, you're truly growing as a man and husband. I don't want to 'fix' my husband's insecurity, I want him to recognize my devotion and dedication to him and appreciate the fact that I am working to help support our family...and not put yet another emotional burden on me to carry for him.

Just my 2 cents...

Pbartender's picture


Posts like this are like pillars and posts bolstering the roof of what I'm learning right now...  It reassures me that it's not going to all cave in on its own.

I've been reading Epictetus's The Art of Living, and it's been a big help with just this sort of thing.



I agree with Sherri

Keep your mouth shut about feeling threatened.  Maybe it's not just about feeling like she now has more money and can leave more easily, but also a bit of jealousy.  I have a problem with that myself.  I'll be envious of something someone else has or does or accomplishes and beat myself up because I haven't been able to do the same and it is of course my own fault for not being motivated, proactive, etc. etc...

Be happy for her & keep working on yourself.