1. Skip to Menu
  2. Skip to Content
  3. Skip to Footer>
Sunday, 25 March 2001

I Am Second to his Job

Written by  Dr. Louise Klein

Rate this item
(0 votes)

QDear Wholefamily Counselor,

My husband and I have been married for only 6 months but we have been together for 7 years. My problem is that my husband is a workaholic. We own a business and have several employees.

My husband makes me feel as if I am second to his job. He worries more about other people their needs before my needs and me. He is more willing to work on our business than on our marriage.

I would like to know how I can confront him about it without offending him and getting into an argument.

Can you please help?

ADear Second Place,

Have you two always worked together? Some couples are able to make the distinction between work and home but other people are not so good at drawing boundaries. For other couples the boundaries are completely blurred and work conversations can take place even in bed. Where do you two fit in?

Have you considered getting another job? It can be difficult to watch your husband pay so much attention to other people on the job. It might be easier if you worked elsewhere then your time at home could really focus on the two of you as a couple.

Do you plan to have children? Have you talked about what changes would need to take place in his schedule if you have a baby?

Ask for one change at a time. And be patient. Workaholics have a hard time changing even when they sincerely want to.

Sit down with your husband and talk calmly with him about your concerns. Don't confront him. Talk reasonably with him. Be sure to tell him that you appreciate how hard he works and the life that he provides for the two of you. Ask him to consider where it would be possible to draw a line. For example, setting a time to be at home each evening and not taking phone calls after a certain hour.

Is there an assistant manager who could be "on call" the nights that your husband is "off duty"? If he needs to work Saturdays, ask him to take one Saturday off each month. Maybe he can also take a day or two half days off during the week.

Start small. Ask for one change at a time. Plan some nice activities for your time together so as to reinforce that this is "play time". And be patient. Workaholics have a hard time changing even when they sincerely want to. It's all too easy for "just one more phone call" to become two more hours at the office. Be flexible. Crises at the office do happen and there will be times when he'll have to stay late.

Dr. Louise Klein

Last modified on Thursday, 24 March 2011 08:11
Did You Like This? SHARE IT NOW!

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter the (*) required information where indicated.
Basic HTML code is allowed.

Dr. Louise Klein

Dr. Louise Klein

Louise Klein was born on the West Coast of Canada but lived for many years in Los Angeles and Philadelphia. She has a doctorate in clinical psychology from Widener University in Pennsylvania. Dr. Louise Klein is an experienced therapist in insight-oriented talk therapy. She has worked with individuals, couples and groups for many years. Her experience with families includes stepfamilies, adoptive families, nuclear families and families dealing with illness or death. Dr Klein is also trained in thought field therapy and regression therapy and has taught and worked internationally. Louise Klein lives in a rural community with her husband and St. Bernard and has a stepdaughter in college in New England.

Related items (by tag)

Interactive Features

Family Soap Opera

Join the Austen-Kutchinskys as they struggle to make their new blended family work.

Real Life Dramas

Listen to others Think it only happens to you? Families in conflict reveal their innermost struggles to communicate.


Learn how to express yourself through letter writing- using proven techniques for creating positive relationships.

Real Greetings

Real Cards...for Real Life

Marriage Tips

Receive Marriage Tips from Dr. Michael Tobin Delivered Directly To Your Mailbox

SIGN UP NOW and Receive the E-Book "10 Things Never To Do In A Marriage" FOR FREE!


See Sample Tips

We respect your email privacy
J-Town Internet Site Design