A spouse that just doesn't get it. - page 2
So let me start off by saying that my husband is a great guy. He would move heaven and Earth to make sure I'm happy but he just doesn't get it when it comes to school. He has never been to... Read More
Aug 17, '13Haha my hubby and I have had this discussion several times! He always says people make things out to be way worse than they are and the ones who talk about class's and such only have negative things to say. In all cases it's been hard but not overwhelming and I just did it. Men are problem solvers, they want a solution and when we say something is going to be so hard and we stress they try to downsize it because they love us. I've learned to be careful about stressing around my hubby because it's like he feels responsible for it.
Aug 17, '13Have you tried telling him that it makes you feel really unsupported when he constantly shoots down everything you say? You're supposed to be partners getting through life. He doesn't need to understand your class, but he does need to understand his obligation.
That said, when you present your standard guy with a problem, he feels like he needs to solve it. That's what they're put on Earth to do, right? This isn't just true of the blue collar types, either. My husband is a former military officer who just finished his MBA and works as the finance manager of a church. If I want him to just listen to me vent, I have to preface what I say with, "I'm just letting off steam, and I just need you to listen, not come up with solutions, OK?" But then, when I really am looking for us to figure something out together, like child care during some obligation I have coming up or how we'll handle chores when I have to work three in a row, I need to make sure he understands that yes, we are in problem-solving mode for this one.
Guys are simple creatures. They WANT to move Heaven and Earth for the women they love. If you just tell them up front exactly what you need from them, you'll likely get it.
I also agree that there may be some intimidation going on. You're getting educated to a high degree and he works with his hands. Maybe what he needs is reassurance that you still see value in him and what he does. Unlike that stupid Beyonce song, our guys ARE irreplaceable, and we should let them know that more often. When was the last time you told him how much you appreciate him busting his butt to support the family, being a good father, treating you like the queen of his life? They need to hear that stuff, even if they say they don't.
Aug 17, '13Have him study with you. Show him the content and have him help you with it for several hours a week, he will get it then. My wife got it, she knew nursing was hard to get through cause her sister in law was an AP professor for the school and she talked about how hard it was. My only issue with my wife now that Im in nursing is she doesnt get the sleep routine. I work 12 hour shifts nights (7pm - 7am) and I dont get home till around 830 - 900 am (I have a 45 min drive).
She will still call me at noon when she has lunch break and ask if Im still sleeping lol. Love her to death but she just doesnt get that I cant switch over to days as well. I have the next day off and she expects me to be able to fall asleep at night like she does, So hard to switch sleep scheduals back and forth (I did that for a while at another facility, it almost killed me with the rotating shifts).
Aug 17, '13My ex-husband came from a stubbornly working-class, right-wing family, his parents raised all the kids with the ethos "there's two ways to succeed in life, either work with your hands or own your own business." They actively DISCOURAGED their kids from going to college, with the general mentality that college was for bourgeoise cream puffs who were too wimpy to pound nails or fix cars. He and his siblings all did fine for themselves this way, all becoming business owners, construction workers, carpenters, etc. The fact all of them made enough money to afford homeownership & drive new cars only cemented in this value system that rejected higher education than high school. It was a fierce point of pride for his family that most of them were moderately successful without going to college, and I got so sick of hearing about it I could have puked.
Imagine then, what I was up against when I went for my 2nd degree, a BSN, 3 years into the marriage. I was already labeled as "fancy" by my in-laws for the useless BA I earned at 19, long before I married him, and the fact that MY parents were college professors.
And my husband was HORRIBLE to me while I was in . The fact I had a full-ride didn't help. He not only didn't believe the coursework was difficult, but teased and mocked me mercilessly for studying hours a day and stressing out about tests. He would make fun of me, "okay, Nursey, whatever you say, Hotlips Houlihan, yes ma'am Nurse Ratchet," etc. When he'd tell me about his work day or what he helped build, he'd pound his chest and say "and we didn't need to read no damn books to do THAT!" And so on and so forth. I avoided family gatherings because his parents and siblings piled on the abuse too. Once, I got caught telling one of their little daughters she could go to school to be a veterinarian, and she was practically ripped away from the conversation. How dare I introduce the Communist propaganda of 'education' to any of their kids!
Needless to say our marriage did not survive nursing school. We divorced a year after I graduated. That was 7 years ago. I'm now with a wonderful man who is a teacher - and always encouraging & supporting me to be whatever I want.
Now that I look back & wonder what my ex saw in me, it's easy. He was attracted to what he lacked. I was well-read, well-traveled and educated. He was insecure about his lack of intellectual accomplishment in life, and his constant undermining of my goals was just him panicking that I would "do better" than him not only financially but also in terms of happiness, stability and fulfillment in life. The truth was, he and his redneck, fist-pumping family were all miserable, in crazy amounts of debt, their businesses and marriages failing, their kids all flunking out at school and their houses in foreclosure. He was JEALOUS that I had chosen a different path, and let me know by continually illegitimizing my dreams.
Be wary of his underlying insecurities and how they might play out long term. Nip this in the bud NOW. Address and confront this NOW before he does damage you can't fix. Don't let it spread, like I did.
Aug 17, '13All I can say is that I am glad I went to college right after hs. I wouldn't get the same grades otherwise. It is difficult for some people who haven't gone to college to understand. It is also not always easy to get it through to spouses not in the medical field about things like mandatory ot. etc.. good luck. and after reading mclennan's post..... i grew up surrounded by that mentality and people like that just don't understand . my friends/bfs who were are in pharmacy, medicine, nursing, finance understand and emphasize alot more with why while in school , I couldnt go out all weekend.
Aug 17, '13To the OP: Just wait until you are working as a nurse. He won't understand how hard it is then either. He will shrug it off. One of my marriages was ruined by my nursing career. I needed my husband to understand and support me. It did not happen. With my second husband I limit my complaints to 10 mins max a couple times per week only. They just don't get it and they are very lucky. If they cannot fix the problem they do not want to here about it--husbands, that is.
Aug 17, '13All I can say is WOW. You guys are amazing. Ever single post had some really good advice, and I thank you for that.
My husband does support me and he has faith that I will succeed, however, he is having a really hard time understanding why I have to put so much time into. In order for him to get certifications for his job he has to take timed, open-book tests. They are pretty much testing his ability to look up and find a building code, so he doesn't actually have to memorize an entire book. He puts a monetary value on his time with everything he does and he thinks I should do the same thing with my time. The way I look at it is, if I love something it doesn't matter how much time I put into it.
A very wise old German neighbor of mine once told me "The day a woman gets married is the day she has her first child." And this could not be more true... seriously. When I've been studying for hours on end, he will come into whatever room I'm in and start making obnoxious noises or sing really loud to get my attention. I tend to tune him out because acting like a child isn't going to get him anywhere. If he were to say, hey take a break for 20 minutes to sit with me and watch TV or something I would be much more willing to take a break.
I guess I'm going to try to have a sit down talk with him and come up with some sort of schedule/rules for when I'm engrossed in schoolwork.
THANK YOU AGAIN for all the words of wisdom.
Aug 17, '13Quote from megkatYou could try saying that you have to do more than memorize test answers for nursing. You have to actually understand and remember the material, because if your patient has a heart attack or other medical emergency, you need to *know* what may be happening and what to do about it. You can't just look up the answers in a book, and in fact, there isn't time. Your patient needs your skill, knowledge, critical thinking and immediate action.
They are pretty much testing his ability to look up and find a building code, so he doesn't actually have to memorize an entire book.
THANK YOU AGAIN for all the words of wisdom.
If you can explain this in a way that doesn't take away from the importance of his career, all the better. It's good that he would reference building codes, for instance, and know where to look. It is essential that he does his job well. The difference is, a building can wait until tomorrow or until inspection or until proper building code is figured out... Your patient cannot.
Aug 17, '13OK, devil's advocate time.
Why would we expect our spouse/friends/family members who aren't nurses to care/understand about nursing? Someone who hasn't been to nursing school won't understand about the exams or about clinicals.
Yes, they should be supportive. And I'm sure they care inasmuch as they want us to succeed and to be happy. And they will converse with us about our respective days at school/work like all normal people do. But do we really expect them to understand/care about how hard it is to write a careplan? Or how many med cards we have to memorize?
Would you be interested in the daily minutiae of being a carpenter? Of being in accounting school? Is nursing really that much harder? Or more important? Or more interesting?
And, believe me, your S.O. and friends will tire quickly of hearing about how hard and important nursing is, with the underlaying implication being that it's more difficult or important than whatever they got going on in their lives.
My all time favorite quote from M*A*S*H from HotLips Houlihan (a nurse) is where she listens to BJ complain about how much he misses his kids, and how people in the service who don't have kids couldn't possibly understand, and their pain can't compare. Hotlips is having none of it. She replies "How dare you stand there and act like your brand of suffering is worse than anybody else's!"
I think that quote applies here.
Aug 17, '13DH probably won't understand nursing school because he's never done it. But that's okay! It sure would be great if he tried to understand but BrandonLPN has a good point, being supportive is different than being understanding. Try approaching from a different point with your DH. Instead of showing him your textbooks and telling the curving system of the A&P, ask him for support in laundry, meal planning and child care.
Aug 17, '13Basically, I would educate him by having him see items that make it more real to him.
Have him speak with a nurse, a husband of a nurse, or several nursing students.
Either way, organizing and getting agreement on items now can really help.
having the kids do after school activities to give you time to study,
having grandparents watch the kids sometimes, or
assistance with house cleaning.
Even things as small as automatic bill paying, or organizing extended family and friends can lesson the strain on you and your husband.
Other great tricks are how to cook meals quickly, or the ability to call out during finals week.
Organizing and educating(husband, kids, extended family) and getting their buy in really helps.
Aug 18, '13I sometimes have the same problem with my husband. We don't have kids so that is definitely a plus for us, but he gets very sensitive about being "ignored" when I'm reading or doing work. He understands that I'm not doing it to hurt his feelings but it still gets to him. It got to him so bad that we promised to have a date night once a week and have dinner together with no TV or distractions, so we can chat about our day every single night. I know it's hard to set time aside but I don't like the stress it puts on our marriage so I work extra hard every night to avoid falling behind. He also agreed to do the dishes for me and some light house work so we can have that weekly date night. He will do more for me so that we can workout together on the weekends. It doesn't stop him from feeling "ignored" but he is trying to be there for me and knows I really want to be a nurse. I hope y'all can get to a common ground where he takes what is going on with your school life more serious and helps out more. Good luck.