Her Bad Attitude
Q: I've been married to my high school sweetheart for 2 years, after being together for 10 years. At 23 I bought a house for myself and my 2 year old. I have since had another child. The problem in our marriage is my husband has not had a steady job since I have known him, and the load of supporting four people has always been a backbreaker for me. It's so bad that I have developed the worst attitude, and it manifests all the time for no reason. A few days ago we had an argument about my attitude, and he asked if I thought I was going to be able to move past having to support us. He graduates school in 2 months, and according to him the financial strain will be over. I really don't know if I can get past it. How I can relieve this terrible attitude? -- Tiffany, 27
Dr. Susan: You say your "bad attitude" shows up "all the time for no reason." I beg to differ. You've been supporting the whole family for a very long time. You're tired. You're resentful. I would guess that your husband hasn't been doing everything he can to lighten your load. Your so-called negative attitude is a normal response to your burdensome situation. If you only hang in there until your mate is done with school, then see if he indeed takes over a significant part of the financial strain. I do believe you will be able to move past this hard time, at which point your attitude will naturally improve. Meanwhile, get a babysitter and have a little fun, with or without your husband. I know, you're the one paying for babysitters and also for whatever you find to be relaxing, but it will be worth it once you see he's holding up his end. He's telling you there's a light at the end of the tunnel. Give him a few more months to prove it.
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.