For more than a decade now, my wife has been doing profitably as a career professional in corporate training. In addition to that, she’s pursuing higher studies and gets to go to international conferences and deal with the elite of her field. I, on the other hand, am an undergrad (who had a pretty lengthy stay in college) who does freelance writing work and a few sidelines here and there. Needless to say, she pulls in a lot more for the family bank account than I do. I’ll be the first to admit that our lifestyle is largely due to her efforts.
Does this situation keep me up at night? Does this make me feel like less of a man? Do I feel jealous? Nope to all three. Here’s why:
Your self-worth should not be tied down to financial value. My dad was a high power executive in the 1980s - he used to work for big names like Ayala and CIGI. Sure, he made a lot of money back in the day, but he hardly had time for me, or my mom. He was always too busy working deals and traveling to the Middle East and Europe to spend quality time with us. When he’d get home after weeks of being away, he’d get us expensive presents to buy away his guilt for not being around. Eventually, my mom got fed up with the neglect and split up with him.
Now that I have my own family, I realized that you don’t have to make lots of money to be a success at life. I can say I’m making the grade so far at being a husband – this is my first marriage and I’ve made it last longer than my dad did at his first. I’m also doing well in my career, because even though I don’t rake in as much cash as my wife does, I get work regularly enough from clients. I get perks that few writers do – I traveled to some very interesting destinations and dined in some posh places, all for free when I review restaurants and hotels. I’ve interviewed quite a few celebrities and important people as well. But I also do well at home as this next point reveals…
There are things you can do better. At home, whenever appliances need taking apart, I’m the one who handles it. If a cabinet needs repair, if a gadget needs fixing, my wife comes to me for it. When her laptop starts acting funny or requires a complex operation like memory optimization, defragmentation or antivirus scanning, I take care of the problem. I do the literal heavy lifting as well, for said appliances and furniture. The house’s filing system, both financial and sundry, is something I created and manage, as I’m the one with an accounting and office management background. Being aware of these things gives me confidence in myself, and in my relationship with my wife.