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What if your husband called your career a passion project? We all have that one thing we enjoy doing, whether it’s crafting, exercising, or helping others. When you become really involved with an organization, foundation etc, people may start to call it your passion project.
The original poster (OP) shared that he is married with two teenage children, a son aged 15, and a daughter aged 16. They recently moved to a new area, and his youngest child has been struggling with the transition.
Prior to the move, their son came out as gay to his family and some friends. Both his family and friends supported him, but shortly after, their family moved away because of OP’s wife’s job. OP went on to say that his son has been having difficulty with the move as the area they live in now is less accepting of their son’s sexuality.
The family has been in their new home for a little over a year, and while their son has had a difficult time with the transition, their daughter is thriving in the new environment and school.
OP said that the move did cause tension between him and his wife because he felt it was a cruel and unusual punishment for their son. OP’s wife argued that things would get easier for their son since he would be starting a new school either way because he was also going from middle to high school. OP feels that his wife has been very unsympathetic to what their son is and has been going through.
Recently, OP and his wife found marijuana in their son’s room. OP was prepared to make sure their son wasn’t self-medicating in a way that could lead somewhere dangerous and give him the ‘don’t be stupid, don’t drive under the influence” talk, but before he was able to do this, OP’s wife had grounded him for two weeks and took away his phone every afternoon after school. This punishment has cut him off from his friends at his old school, and OP feels this has further isolated him during an already difficult time.
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After this, OP sat down with his wife and told her things weren’t working. OP said they tried it for a year, but their son has consistently expressed his unhappiness and discomfort to them. OP told her it was time to start making plans to move back to their original area, and his wife countered that their daughter was doing great and that OP always favored their son because he is the family’s baby and that they needed to give the move more time. OP’s wife also said both kids would be off to college, and this would be all over soon.
OP replied that HE was unwilling to let his son live in discomfort for three more years before he left for college. OP also went on to say his job and money that he had received from his grandparents (a trust fund of sorts) more than covered their living expenses, and there was no real need for her to work.
OP told his wife that it’s incredibly selfish of her to put her “passion project” ahead of her own children and that being a parent means that sometimes they need to put their “needs” on the back burner while they do what’s best for their children.
OP’s wife was furious that he called her career a “passion project” and hadn’t spoken to OP since their conversation.
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The Masses Weigh In
One Redditor commented, “YTA, the context of your children doesn’t apply here. You essentially said your wife doesn’t do anything of significance, which is really hurtful and demotivating. Not to mention it looks like manipulation to get her to be completely dependent on you.”
A second Redditor said, “Nope, sorry, you can’t look at your child who is suffering and say “I don’t care. he will go to college in 3 years, he should just suck it up”. And when they find him acting out, self-medicating, whatever you want to call it, you punish him. Your kid is 15, realizes he’s gay, and we will uproot him because I got a promotion.”
“They have a sibling/son who is a gay teen, and they moved him to an area that is “less accepting,” and that’s OK because mom got a raise, and they’re kids who can make friends anywhere. Please. Families make sacrifices for family members all the time. Now I 100% agree that calling her job a passion project was incredibly unacceptable, but that isn’t a good enough reason to make your child suffer.”
A third Redditor said, “Her punishment was wrong, but notice OP never really explained about what was going on with the daughter where she is doing better now. It was all about the son. Something was happening with the daughter where they moved from, but he just blew it off.
There may be a problem where each parent has a favorite. OP only cares about their son’s problems, and mom only cares about the daughter’s problems. I think he purposefully omitted what was going on with the daughter to get people to agree with him.”
Another user commented, “Yeah, agree, YTA. And he didn’t want to move and is using his son as an excuse and using all the buzzwords. I don’t hear him talking about helping him fit in – or talking to his wife about punishments. It all goes back to HER job. He feels threatened and has his issues.”
Another Redditor had this to say, “The son is an excuse. He would have been a freshman in a new school where he wasn’t put either way. Freshmen years generally suck; there doesn’t seem to be anything here other than he didn’t want to move. The dad will let him smoke pot (which is illegal even in a legal state) with zero punishment and thinks two weeks without a phone is harsh. He is overflowing the Alex situation (and completely ignoring the Marie situation). I think he didn’t want to move and he’s finding an excuse to justify moving back.”
Finally, a Redditor added, “ YTA Demeaning her work bc you don’t need her income isn’t necessary. It sounds very much like you don’t respect her at all.
What if Marie, who is doing better than ever here, takes a nosedive when you move back? Will your solution be to move again? Why do you think moving back will be a magic bullet for your son? Teendom isn’t easy for anyone. You don’t know if his support system would’ve held in the transition to high school.”
“I suspect that you were happier before the move. You seem to resent your wife’s job, and you likely resent the time her job takes away from you. You probably also like the power that comes from controlling all of the money. Moving back is what you want for you, and the bonus is that Alex seemed happier there, too. You two need counseling both for your marriage and on how help Alex through adolescence.”
What do you think? Usually, Redditors are on the same page regarding who’s to blame, but this one feels like there are a lot of grey areas! What would you do in a situation like this?
This article is inspired by the internet and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Motherhood Life Balance.
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As a full-time working mom of three, I know what it’s like to feel like life is out of balance and out of control.
While I don’t have it all figured out, I am committed to sharing helpful tips and tricks with other mommas who are ready to break free from negativity, ditch mom guilt, & finally, live life on their own terms.