Fiance won't quit stressful job

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Lincoln
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Lincoln » Mon May 22, 2017 3:47 pm

Mickfromgm wrote:If she offered a couples' counseling/therapy, you should go for it. Having an independent professional standing in the middle as a facilitator makes all the difference - s/he could set her straight or s/he could point out flaw in your perspective.

From the sound of it, she is willing (or at least is open) to breaking up with you for her job. I hate to say it but that's all you have to know. If she still feels the same way after she stabilizes mentally and you guys have been in counseling for a while, the writing is on the wall, i hope I am wrong.


I echo this recommendation. My career has been a sticking point the entire life of our relationship, and couples therapy has helped both of us deal better with the demands the job places on it. She understands better why it's important to me and how it's not as simple as my "choosing" to work instead of being home, and I understand better how it negatively affects me (including my health and my mood) and my ability to manage a relationship, leading me to take steps to have better work-life balance and to be more attentive to her needs. Give it a try.

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Lincoln
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Lincoln » Mon May 22, 2017 3:51 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

After fighting all last night and this morning, she just told me via text that she'll quit her job for me.

At this point, I know what to believe. She's promised me before that she will quit, only to change her mind later. Also, she shouldn't be quitting just because I ask her. She needs to quit because her own health is at risk. The fact that she doesn't understand that this job is killing her is very troubling and upsetting.

I have no idea why she wants to become such a martyr for this job.


This thought stuck with me. She needs to understand (or, more accurately, be honest with herself about) the negative effects of the job. (And therapy can help.) If she decides to stay with it, it should be because she thinks it's worth it. And if she decides to leave her job, it should be because she thinks it's not worth the negative impact it has on her life. But if she leaves her job "for you," there's a good chance she'll just resent you for it, which won't help your relationship one bit.

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Mickfromgm
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Mickfromgm » Mon May 22, 2017 4:33 pm

Lincoln wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

After fighting all last night and this morning, she just told me via text that she'll quit her job for me.

At this point, I know what to believe. She's promised me before that she will quit, only to change her mind later. Also, she shouldn't be quitting just because I ask her. She needs to quit because her own health is at risk. The fact that she doesn't understand that this job is killing her is very troubling and upsetting.

I have no idea why she wants to become such a martyr for this job.


This thought stuck with me. She needs to understand (or, more accurately, be honest with herself about) the negative effects of the job. (And therapy can help.) If she decides to stay with it, it should be because she thinks it's worth it. And if she decides to leave her job, it should be because she thinks it's not worth the negative impact it has on her life. But if she leaves her job "for you," there's a good chance she'll just resent you for it, which won't help your relationship one bit.


Ya. I don't know OP or his fiancee (obviously) so I don't want to insinuate that OP is doing anything improper, but there appears to be a lot more to the story . . . at least from her own perspective, fact-based or not. We can all be appalled at, and confounded by, her but maybe we don't have crucial pieces of information. If we had such information, maybe we would understand her better. Of course, I appreciate that it's a forum so no OP is going to do a 3,000 word rundown of history and facts.

Phil Brooks
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Phil Brooks » Mon May 22, 2017 5:42 pm

Mickfromgm wrote:
Lincoln wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

After fighting all last night and this morning, she just told me via text that she'll quit her job for me.

At this point, I know what to believe. She's promised me before that she will quit, only to change her mind later. Also, she shouldn't be quitting just because I ask her. She needs to quit because her own health is at risk. The fact that she doesn't understand that this job is killing her is very troubling and upsetting.

I have no idea why she wants to become such a martyr for this job.


This thought stuck with me. She needs to understand (or, more accurately, be honest with herself about) the negative effects of the job. (And therapy can help.) If she decides to stay with it, it should be because she thinks it's worth it. And if she decides to leave her job, it should be because she thinks it's not worth the negative impact it has on her life. But if she leaves her job "for you," there's a good chance she'll just resent you for it, which won't help your relationship one bit.


Ya. I don't know OP or his fiancee (obviously) so I don't want to insinuate that OP is doing anything improper, but there appears to be a lot more to the story . . . at least from her own perspective, fact-based or not. We can all be appalled at, and confounded by, her but maybe we don't have crucial pieces of information. If we had such information, maybe we would understand her better. Of course, I appreciate that it's a forum so no OP is going to do a 3,000 word rundown of history and facts.


What on earth was the point of this post?

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Mickfromgm
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Mickfromgm » Mon May 22, 2017 9:00 pm

Phil Brooks wrote:
Mickfromgm wrote:
Lincoln wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

After fighting all last night and this morning, she just told me via text that she'll quit her job for me.

At this point, I know what to believe. She's promised me before that she will quit, only to change her mind later. Also, she shouldn't be quitting just because I ask her. She needs to quit because her own health is at risk. The fact that she doesn't understand that this job is killing her is very troubling and upsetting.

I have no idea why she wants to become such a martyr for this job.


This thought stuck with me. She needs to understand (or, more accurately, be honest with herself about) the negative effects of the job. (And therapy can help.) If she decides to stay with it, it should be because she thinks it's worth it. And if she decides to leave her job, it should be because she thinks it's not worth the negative impact it has on her life. But if she leaves her job "for you," there's a good chance she'll just resent you for it, which won't help your relationship one bit.


Ya. I don't know OP or his fiancee (obviously) so I don't want to insinuate that OP is doing anything improper, but there appears to be a lot more to the story . . . at least from her own perspective, fact-based or not. We can all be appalled at, and confounded by, her but maybe we don't have crucial pieces of information. If we had such information, maybe we would understand her better. Of course, I appreciate that it's a forum so no OP is going to do a 3,000 word rundown of history and facts.


What on earth was the point of this post?


A lot of people here seem to be convinced that OP's fiancee is nuts for sacrificing her health and fiancé for a job. All I am saying, probably very inartfully, is that she most likely has a rationale/perspective that would help explain her point of view . . . . a perspective that we won't learn because she is not here to explain herself. tl;dr, take it easy on the lady.

CBXer
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby CBXer » Mon May 22, 2017 9:28 pm

For what it's worth:

I write capital appeals. Talk about high stakes. I don't find it stressful, however. I do the best job possible, and enjoy my work. I don't get emotionally invested with my clients. I take various measures not to become emotionally connected to the cases, either. I am also a mother to triplets. Yes. Triplets. I went to law school when they were 5. I finished a semester early. I'm a driven, high-strung, competitive person by nature, but I get to work from home and love what I do.

That said, we all deal with anxiety and stress in different ways. Her problems seem to be deeper than that. Perhaps some degree of depression, also. Certainly leaving her, or threatening to leave isn't the answer. Encouraging her into a less stressful line of work (in terms of her inability to perhaps strike a work-life balance in terms of what she deals with day-to-day) is a good idea.

The other reason I am posting this is because I am at a crossroads of prospectively divorcing my husband who is a workaholic. People who want to place their work and professional aspirations above their spouse and children DO NOT CHANGE just because children come into the picture. I had three in one go. I think that's a pretty good litmus test. Someone working 9-5 isn't a workaholic. The fact that her workload and career path of choice have brought you to the situation you find yourself in are demonstrative, instead, of someone who has issues dealing with, perhaps, the more fundamental aspects of life, work and relationships. I imagine you know her family background and that your history of five years have given you valuable insight into her upbringing, but I would hazard to guess that she has some deep-rooted issues that you, should you wish to have a future with her, might need to address together as I doubt, sincerely, that they are profoundly linked to simply her job.

Trust me, marriage is tough, and you need to sort these things out before moving forward as a couple.

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elendinel
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby elendinel » Tue May 23, 2017 12:54 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

After fighting all last night and this morning, she just told me via text that she'll quit her job for me.

At this point, I know what to believe. She's promised me before that she will quit, only to change her mind later. Also, she shouldn't be quitting just because I ask her. She needs to quit because her own health is at risk. The fact that she doesn't understand that this job is killing her is very troubling and upsetting.

I have no idea why she wants to become such a martyr for this job.


I understand that you're in a stressful situation, and that you're dealing with a partner who is willingly putting their health on the line for a job, which is getting extreme regardless of personal philosophy. You're in a tough situation and I get that it's hard to step back from it when the stakes are getting this high.

I would point out that she said therapy was an option, and it sounds like you offered her quitting her job as the only option you would accept before you leave. Because that is truly the only option you gave, it's no wonder why she feels the options she has to decide between right now are to either keep her job (and figure out ways to cope) or leave you. Because she thinks she has other options to alleviate her stress (one of which she didn't fully exploit the last time), it's also not entirely crazy that she disagrees that quitting is her only option now, too.

I don't think you're wrong to be skeptical about her sticking to particular solutions like therapy, but I do question whether or not you're overly fixated on the "quit your job" option that you're forgetting that therapy may fail, but quitting her job may backfire, too. Because as many have said, this is abnormal even for PDs. This may very well be something only therapy, or some other solution other than merely quitting, can fix.

At this point I'd echo the sentiment that couple's therapy may help you figure out what's really going on and ensure you both really understand each other. But if you don't want to have to go through that, or if you did try multiple times before and got nowhere, maybe things have run their course already and even couple's counseling won't bring the two of you closer to agreement. The latter of which would suck; I'm sorry.

Npret
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Npret » Tue May 23, 2017 9:24 am

I don't know the clinical definition of workaholics (if there is one) but someone being obsessed by their work to the extent of ruining their health, not enjoying their life and seriously damaging or destroying their 5 year relationship qualifies for me.

Phil Brooks
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Phil Brooks » Tue May 23, 2017 10:34 am

CBXer wrote:For what it's worth:

I write capital appeals. Talk about high stakes. I don't find it stressful, however. I do the best job possible, and enjoy my work. I don't get emotionally invested with my clients. I take various measures not to become emotionally connected to the cases, either. I am also a mother to triplets. Yes. Triplets. I went to law school when they were 5. I finished a semester early. I'm a driven, high-strung, competitive person by nature, but I get to work from home and love what I do.

That said, we all deal with anxiety and stress in different ways. Her problems seem to be deeper than that. Perhaps some degree of depression, also. Certainly leaving her, or threatening to leave isn't the answer. Encouraging her into a less stressful line of work (in terms of her inability to perhaps strike a work-life balance in terms of what she deals with day-to-day) is a good idea.

The other reason I am posting this is because I am at a crossroads of prospectively divorcing my husband who is a workaholic. People who want to place their work and professional aspirations above their spouse and children DO NOT CHANGE just because children come into the picture. I had three in one go. I think that's a pretty good litmus test. Someone working 9-5 isn't a workaholic. The fact that her workload and career path of choice have brought you to the situation you find yourself in are demonstrative, instead, of someone who has issues dealing with, perhaps, the more fundamental aspects of life, work and relationships. I imagine you know her family background and that your history of five years have given you valuable insight into her upbringing, but I would hazard to guess that she has some deep-rooted issues that you, should you wish to have a future with her, might need to address together as I doubt, sincerely, that they are profoundly linked to simply her job.

Trust me, marriage is tough, and you need to sort these things out before moving forward as a couple.


There's a major disconnect between you telling OP he shouldn't leave his fiancé and you prospectively divorcing your husband with whom you have three kids, based on a very subtle distinction between someone who is a workaholic and someone who is obsessed with work.

CBXer
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby CBXer » Tue May 23, 2017 11:51 am

Perhaps you'd be so helpful as to expand upon the subtleties of said distinction?

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Phil Brooks » Tue May 23, 2017 2:08 pm

CBXer wrote:Perhaps you'd be so helpful as to expand upon the subtleties of said distinction?


I didn't make the distinction, you did. You said your husband is a workaholic but OP's fiancé isn't, and therefore you're justified in possibly divorcing your husband but OP should not leave his fiancé.

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby elendinel » Tue May 23, 2017 4:21 pm

Phil Brooks wrote:
CBXer wrote:Perhaps you'd be so helpful as to expand upon the subtleties of said distinction?


I didn't make the distinction, you did. You said your husband is a workaholic but OP's fiancé isn't, and therefore you're justified in possibly divorcing your husband but OP should not leave his fiancé.


I think the point is that OP's fiancee may just need therapy to work on underlying mental health issues (at which point the symptoms of those issues, including this stress, may go away), and/or OP and fiancee may just need couple's counseling to work on understanding each other and how to deal with each other, in which case there are some actionable things left for fiancee and OP to do that may or may not fix their issues in time and which may or may not allow fiancee and OP to eventually get on the same page about things in time.

Whereas once CBX learned that her marriage's underlying issues were not a mental health issue/lack of understanding husband's perspective, but instead were fundamental philosophical differences as to how she and husband want to conduct their lives (in which case the only options are to accept those differences or leave). Fundamental differences in philosophy don't tend to work themselves out with time.

If I'm right I don't really see a disconnect at all.

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby rdawkins28 » Wed May 24, 2017 12:22 am

I was browsing imgur. Got to this post http://imgur.com/gallery/2LuDn and it reminded me of this thread.

Npret
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Npret » Wed May 24, 2017 6:54 am

elendinel wrote:
Phil Brooks wrote:
CBXer wrote:Perhaps you'd be so helpful as to expand upon the subtleties of said distinction?


I didn't make the distinction, you did. You said your husband is a workaholic but OP's fiancé isn't, and therefore you're justified in possibly divorcing your husband but OP should not leave his fiancé.


I think the point is that OP's fiancee may just need therapy to work on underlying mental health issues (at which point the symptoms of those issues, including this stress, may go away), and/or OP and fiancee may just need couple's counseling to work on understanding each other and how to deal with each other, in which case there are some actionable things left for fiancee and OP to do that may or may not fix their issues in time and which may or may not allow fiancee and OP to eventually get on the same page about things in time.

Whereas once CBX learned that her marriage's underlying issues were not a mental health issue/lack of understanding husband's perspective, but instead were fundamental philosophical differences as to how she and husband want to conduct their lives (in which case the only options are to accept those differences or leave). Fundamental differences in philosophy don't tend to work themselves out with time.

If I'm right I don't really see a disconnect at all.


The disconnect is that the husband also has mental health issues.

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elendinel
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby elendinel » Wed May 24, 2017 7:35 am

Npret wrote:
elendinel wrote:
Phil Brooks wrote:
CBXer wrote:Perhaps you'd be so helpful as to expand upon the subtleties of said distinction?


I didn't make the distinction, you did. You said your husband is a workaholic but OP's fiancé isn't, and therefore you're justified in possibly divorcing your husband but OP should not leave his fiancé.


I think the point is that OP's fiancee may just need therapy to work on underlying mental health issues (at which point the symptoms of those issues, including this stress, may go away), and/or OP and fiancee may just need couple's counseling to work on understanding each other and how to deal with each other, in which case there are some actionable things left for fiancee and OP to do that may or may not fix their issues in time and which may or may not allow fiancee and OP to eventually get on the same page about things in time.

Whereas once CBX learned that her marriage's underlying issues were not a mental health issue/lack of understanding husband's perspective, but instead were fundamental philosophical differences as to how she and husband want to conduct their lives (in which case the only options are to accept those differences or leave). Fundamental differences in philosophy don't tend to work themselves out with time.

If I'm right I don't really see a disconnect at all.


The disconnect is that the husband also has mental health issues.


Being a workaholic is not inherently a mental health issue.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed May 24, 2017 7:56 am

I think that's a matter of opinion, honestly.

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rcharter1978
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby rcharter1978 » Wed May 24, 2017 8:02 am

Npret wrote:Help her get a resume together and find other jobs.
She doesn't have time to do that on her own.

Are there other ways you can be supportive to her? Help her get therapy?

I was a workaholic person but not nearly to that extent. I know you cant talk her into changing. Work is more important than anything else because she has a warped perspective. You need to help her find something else and maybe a therapist will help.

She's likely to have different priorities than you want her to have. Maybe after having a child her priorities will change.

Maybe her doctor can tell her she has to change if she hears that enough it might start to sink in.


Sweet baby jebus, please do not try to solve this problem with a child. Please, try any other fix but bringing a defenseless child into this. TYIA.

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby rcharter1978 » Wed May 24, 2017 8:05 am

Npret wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
sanzgo wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:
Npret wrote: She's likely to have different priorities than you want her to have. Maybe after having a child her priorities will change.


Can we maybe leave the sexism at the door?

OP: why does your fiance want to keep working as a PD? This doesn't seem like the problem is related to her being a "workaholic" as much as it is about the unique stress that comes from a job where your clients' freedom is at stake on every call. But if she's talking about going back, that means there's something about the job that she feels committed to.


sorry but what's sexist about "Maybe after having a child her priorities will change."? isn't it reasonable to posit that one might have a shift in priority from working 24/7 to working less to spend more family time after having a child, regardless of who the primary caregiver ends up being?


Sure. If you don't assume that the woman is the primary caregiver, that every woman wants to have a child, that every woman will prioritize their child ahead of their job, etc., then it's not at all sexist.

On the other hand, since they're not actually married yet, and there's nothing to indicate that the solution to this is to get someone pregnant in order to change their priorities, maybe it's not the best approach.


Im not sexist. I'm going by my experience with men and women who priorities change when they have children. People of both sexes have left biglaw for better hours after they have kids. I've seen it as a primary reason people decide to leave unless they are moving out of the city. They want to be home more with their young kids. Don't assume I'm being sexist when I'm not.

What I was trying to say as a former workaholic person is that it's going to be hard to get her to change. A change in life circumstances can do it but not getting married I would think.

Edit to add: I didn't mean to suggest she get pregnant now. I was looking down the road for OP.


does it even make one iota of sense to risk a child's happiness on your prior experience? Or on a maybe? Or even a likely? That's not sexist, it's stupid.

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby elendinel » Wed May 24, 2017 8:22 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I think that's a matter of opinion, honestly.


You don't have a mental condition just because you prioritize work more than other people prioritize work. There are, to be sure, people who take it too far because of mental health issues, but that does not make having work be a priority, at its core, a mental health issue. Just like eating more cake than your friends doesn't make you psychotic just because cake in excess is harmful and because some people take cake-eating too far. We can all agree to disagree as to whether we would ourselves value work over, say, a family, and whether or not we'd want to date or marry someone who feels that way (I wouldn't either, personally), but then we're talking about moral judgments, not actual disorders.

OP's fiancee sounds more like she may have an actual condition because her hours aren't that long and because she's having an unusual amount of trouble adjusting to the stress of her job, even years after starting, to the point where it's physically affecting her. If the issue was just that she worked 9-8 and didn't care about missing kid's baseball game to work on motions, that's not necessarily a quality I'd want in a partner, but that's not necessarily a mental issue, either.

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rcharter1978
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby rcharter1978 » Wed May 24, 2017 8:35 am

Mickfromgm wrote:If she offered a couples' counseling/therapy, you should go for it. Having an independent professional standing in the middle as a facilitator makes all the difference - s/he could set her straight or s/he could point out flaw in your perspective.

From the sound of it, she is willing (or at least is open) to breaking up with you for her job. I hate to say it but that's all you have to know. If she still feels the same way after she stabilizes mentally and you guys have been in counseling for a while, the writing is on the wall, i hope I am wrong


I think this makes sense. OP -- she may see you as the enemy who is just pressuring her to leave her job and betray her co-workers, but a neutral third party may make her feel less "picked on, " which may make her less defensive. I also think you have a hard road ahead if she really doesn't want to leave her job. There may be resentment if she does leave, she may drag it out by constantly telling you she is going to leave, there may be more illness around the fact that she is feeling pressure from all ends.

I do not know what the right answer is, this sounds like her first job out of school. If it isn't, how has she dealt with other jobs? How was she in law school? I think it would ultimately suck if she left the job and experienced the same problems in a new job. Which is why counseling is probably the best solution.

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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Npret » Wed May 24, 2017 8:52 am

Good luck with everything OP. Let us know how it goes if you feel like updating.

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Mickfromgm
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Mickfromgm » Wed May 24, 2017 10:28 am

I wonder if OP's fiancee is a perfectionist. I have noted by observing associates that young perfectionists are prone to magnifying stress to the breaking point, because of their self-compulsion of always achieving the perfect result, whether in terms of conducting legal research, writing memos and briefs, and ultimately obtaining an acquittal for the not-exactly-innocent clients. For example, the possibility of missing a favorable precedent keeps them up at 3 a.m., checking everything for the 4th time.

Most people can say, "oh well, I did my best, what can I do?" but not young perfectionists. . . . they blame themselves until they are paralyzed from a fear of messing up (by their impossible standards). As they get older, they could gain a proper perspective but not for a few years. Of course, from a totally selfish standpoint, those anal retentive, paranoid juniors make some of the best associates.

If this is the case, that's something the fiancee can work on with a counselor. It can be fixed.

Redfactor
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby Redfactor » Wed May 24, 2017 10:47 am

Therapy is not a panacea.

Have you looked at the four 'horsemen' predictors of divorce by Gottman? There are red flags everywhere in your post.

I am in a healthy marriage and it takes a ton of work by both partners. I can't imagine the efforts required to force a square peg through a round hole.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed May 24, 2017 1:48 pm

elendinel wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:I think that's a matter of opinion, honestly.


You don't have a mental condition just because you prioritize work more than other people prioritize work. There are, to be sure, people who take it too far because of mental health issues, but that does not make having work be a priority, at its core, a mental health issue. Just like eating more cake than your friends doesn't make you psychotic just because cake in excess is harmful and because some people take cake-eating too far. We can all agree to disagree as to whether we would ourselves value work over, say, a family, and whether or not we'd want to date or marry someone who feels that way (I wouldn't either, personally), but then we're talking about moral judgments, not actual disorders.

OP's fiancee sounds more like she may have an actual condition because her hours aren't that long and because she's having an unusual amount of trouble adjusting to the stress of her job, even years after starting, to the point where it's physically affecting her. If the issue was just that she worked 9-8 and didn't care about missing kid's baseball game to work on motions, that's not necessarily a quality I'd want in a partner, but that's not necessarily a mental issue, either.

But I also think there are mental health issues that manifest as workaholism, and that could be involved in what the husband is doing. So opinion wasn't the best word, but I think the distinction being drawn could be artificial - we don't have sufficient information to say this is really different.

B90
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Re: Fiance won't quit stressful job

Postby B90 » Thu May 25, 2017 5:47 am

My friend was a DA for approximately five years and then burned out. She worked in the city where she grew up. She was prosecuting (alleged) murderers and organized crime. She took a year off and then decided not to go back. She started to substitute teach at a local high school. She now has a permanent position teaching high school history.
Although she ended up not going back to practing law, she could have done so after her year "off" to teach. Although teaching high school (especially as a sub) is stresful, it is a different type of stress. It could give her a much needed mental break. MA allows you to "suspend" your license for a year or more. You pay a small fee (small in comparison to annual bar dues) and then you can reactivate your license by paying annual bar dues again. I would assume other states have similar programs. I would look into that (just call the state bar).




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