MY HUSBAND IS INTIMIDATED BY MY AMBITIONS

Dear Eve,

I’m having some problems with my husband of two years. We had met at university during my second year while he was in his fourth. I was attracted to his ambition, and though we came from very different backgrounds and though we hold different ideas, we instantly clicked.

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However, our cultural differences seem to be putting a strain on our relationship now. I did have an inkling it would affect us when we started settling together, as his parents had made it very clear they wouldn’t allow us to cohabit prior to marriage, and he wasn’t willing to fight for his position. I didn’t want to make a big fuss about it because we’d be married within a year and a half anyway, so I thought it wasn’t worth rocking the boat and burning bridges with his family, who are very conservative. Though he has made an effort throughout his life to move away from this mentality, there are still some attitudes which he’s finding hard to shake off.

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I’m currently in the process of setting up my own business, and so far, I’m doing ok. My husband had been supportive at the start, but now I’m starting to realise that he never truly took my plans seriously. He’s doing well in his job, but he’s currently fighting for a promotion which seems unlikely, and for this I’m angry, because I feel he does deserve to move on to the next level. However, I think this is starting to make him feel emasculated, and some pressure has begun by both him and his family for me to get pregnant. He’s started to complain that I’m too focused on building my career than giving him an heir. He’s never been sexually violent, though. I personally don’t feel this is the best time for us to have a child, as we’re not financially stable enough yet. I do want children in the near future, just not until I set my business’ foundations.

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To top it all, every time we visit his parents, his mother is very blatantly making remarks on when I’ll be making her a nanna. We had a bit of a fight a few days ago because she asked why I married her son in the first place if I wasn’t going to give him children. I can’t change their mentality, as they’re very set in their ways. I’m not as concerned about her comments as I am about my husband’s attitude. He doesn’t want them to interfere, but he doesn’t disagree with them either. I’ve talked to him about it and tried to discuss it. I said that we’ll be financially ready next year, but he’s been brought up to have the final say because in his mind, it’s a man’s decision.

To be honest, I don’t know where this desire for fatherhood came from. He was never dead set on it before or after we got married. It’s only now that he’s seeing me make progress and him feeling stuck in a rut in his work.

If anyone’s got any answers out there, I’d like some advice on how I can convince him that I’ll be ready next year.