A young couple are having marital issues. You would ask, “ Who doesn’t?” Anyway, this couple are both working and they have a child. Since the lady needs to leave early, the onus of caring for the child has been on the husband. His seems to be a more flexible work routine.
He has been doing his part well, but somewhere down the line, he started to feel his wife is not doing her part fully. He wants her to give up her job and stay at home. He feels the child is not getting enough of maternal love. She must be home in the evenings and on holidays. She could be compensating then. Anyway, he has now hardened his stand.
He has come to the conclusion she is not a good mother, so he does not want her as a wife. He has shrunk her role. As a wife, she is a mother too. But she is not only a mother; a wife’s role has more shades to it. But he is focusing on the mother part only. This seems to have become a power struggle between the two; she feels she cannot give up her job.
She has got a job with great difficulty. She feels caring for the child can be done, why does she have to sit at home? Modern day living requires finance, so both parents working makes sense. She wants to provide a good, secure future for the child. She feels justified in retaining her job.
They are at an impasse. Where will this fight go? They do have a problem. They need to look for solution that will appeal to both. It is a genuine problem, but taking a hardened stand will not help.
Both need to realize that it is no longer my or your problem; it is our problem. Because the marriage belongs to both, and so does the child. When both have the welfare of the child at heart, then both must be willing to look for solutions acceptable to both. There should be willingness to compromise a little, give and take a little.
Whatever decision they take will impact their marriage as well as their child. They need to think as a couple as well as parents. When you are committed to your relationship, then you need to have an open mind to look for solutions that is acceptable to both. One issue, and your marriage is shaken? There will be several issues. Both of you need to accept the responsibility for the marriage.
He needs to understand that her working is not the issue, he maybe feeling she does not respect his wishes. But issuing ultimatums is not the solution. He is contemplating divorce. He seems to have become rigid. Every time there is an issue in the marriage; you feel you are not getting your way; you want a divorce. How many times will you marry then? Because issues will crop up.
She too can think of other career options. She can look at taking a break from job, look for some part time/flexi time work. Or they could even think of taking up different shifts, this will ensure there is someone with the kid always. The kid will be going full day school, he could be enrolled in some class/creche for the rest of the evening till one of them returns. There are various ways this problem can be solved. But the intention should be to find a solution, not a power struggle.
I hope this couple do decide their relationship is important for them. If they are unable to discuss without getting emotional, they need to seek out a marital counselor.