It's time for the Best Post Contest! Vote by Fantastic flag! Create a category, make a post, join the fun! Coping with a relationship with a workaholic? January 21, 8: I'm dating a very successful man who has a very demanding and stressful job. It is hard for me to relate because my jobs have always been and I've also never dated someone who worked so much and had so many obligations he is also a parent.
I strongly advise against it. It almost invariably leads to misunderstandings and frustration. Being up-front about my needs, but being very selective as to what was important. Be honest if you really need something to be happy or feel loved, but be prepared to let smaller things go. Likewise be careful not to just sacrifice all of your needs to the gaping maw of his schedule. Don't let the important things fester -- he can't do anything to fix it if you don't tell him it's important to you.
An almost zen-like acceptance on my part. At a certain point, you just have to acknowledge that this is the way it's going to be, it has nothing to do with you, and if you love this person you just have to roll with it. You have to keep in mind that not spending time with you is not choosing not to spend time with you, and it doesn't mean he cares about you any less -- the current work situation demands certain sacrifices.
He would be with you if he could. I'm inclined to think that not spending time with you on an ongoing basis means exactly that he is choosing not to spend time with you. It's a matter of priorities: If work hours are harming a relationship, there is certainly a reasonable case to be made that either the work situation needs to change, or the relationship does.
If someone's job is more important than their relationship or anything else, then you need to be prepared to always be second to work and people whose priorities fall in this order tend to continue to do this, even if they change jobs. Once in a while, this is to be expected in most any relationship, on a permanent basis Well, I disagree with biscotti. It's more complicated than that. Some jobs are intensely demanding, and it's not so much a matter of the person choosing not to be with you, but rather, a job is integral to one's identity, and people don't entirely choose the kind of work they do.
I don't think it is fair to characterize the super-busy partner as "putting you second. But do you really want that? I think it is possible for someone to put you "first," but at the same time accept that they will be gone 70 hours a week, or whatever.
What to do if your partner is married to their job
I was about to make exactly one of tigerbelly's suggestions: Make sure you find a balance here for yourself. You need to know what's really important to you and to let go of the rest and you both need to find ways of making sure you're getting that. Don't let yourself be railroaded into being the only putting any work into the relationship -- especially if you're the one doing the railroading by pre-emptively deciding that none of your needs are important enough to mention.
I can qualify as a workaholic -- I'm about to head into the office it's Sunday She's also a veterinary student, which doesn't make it easier. Biscotti is making a not invalid point, and one to consider in some situatiuons, but I don't see it as always a matter of job vs. The OP states that he's not exactly a "workaholic", just has crazy hours, which is what I'm going from.
My personal bias is probably that, like my husband and the OP's boyfriend, I also value my career highly.
Not my paycheck or my office, but my career. I don't exactly put those demands above my relationship, but I would expect that my spouse would work with me to make our relationship work within the context of our respective careers. Both require sacrifices and both can flourish. Building from what jaydar said -- what can be lost here is the difference between a "job" and what I would call a career.
One is for making money, the other is more entwined in other goals, interests, and passions as well as one's identity and values. If two people in a relationship have different work experiences -- one has only ever worked jobs while the other is working on a career -- it can be difficult for one to understand why the other would put so much into something that is "just work.
I don't see it as always a matter of job vs.
Dating someone married to their job
The point I'm making is that people have different priorities, and if there is a serious difference between the priorities of the people in the relationship, then you may have a problem.
Some people need to spend more time with their SO than others to feel happy and secure in their relationship, such people might have trouble having a successful relationship with someone who needs less time than they do and who also likes to spend a lot of time on their career. There isn't a "right or wrong" with this within reason , but there is definitely a "compatible or incompatible". If your relationship expectations are completely out of whack with your SO's relationship expectations, then you have a problem.
No amount of semantic whitewashing is going to change the fact that anonymous' SO has work as his first priority, and that anonymous is on some level hurt by this. Neither of them are right or wrong, but there's not really an easy solution to this kind of issue: I don't mean to sound negative, but I think it's pretty rare for people to truly change their life priorities, and in my opinion, a wide disparity in priorities and expectations is an enormous thing to overcome in a relationship.
Even if this man's job was "just work", he is a parent, too. Which may mean that he doesn't try to ask the boss to adjust his hours, since he doesn't want to jeopardize his position knowing he has offspring to support. Or he may want to save his days off for child-related emergencies and obligations that come up. I don't think it's helpful to think about relationships in terms of who is putting who "first". Many lives cannot be characterized so neatly.
This man has a career, which is probably somewhat intertwined with his personality and sense of self, which in turn provides for his life with his child ren as well as his life with his girlfriend the OP. There is no "first" priority. I think the OP should ask herself about her specific needs, and then discuss with her boyfriend about getting them met. Needs like "more time" and "more attention" are perhaps too vague to be useful.
How much time feels sufficient? Is it a little bit of contact every day, or could you go all week without significant contact if you knew that all day Sunday was yours?
How much attention do you require to feel valued?
Do texts and emails do the trick, or do you feel best if you have a real conversation at some point each day? From there you can strategize about getting those needs met. For more daily contact, you may choose to bring him dinner at the office and spend that hour break with him. You may choose to drive him to work and pick him up for some extra time together. You may ask him to text you more often, or call you at some point during the work day.
For more significant contact, you might have to get more involved with his child ren so that you're a part of his weekends, or take on more organizational tasks for him so that his free time is more free.Can You Know You Want To Marry Someone After Only Six Months Of Dating?
He should be able to identify points during his day during which he can call you for a few minutes, or upcoming free time that he can plan to spend with you. But unfortunately, because he's the one with the long hours AND the parenting, you will probably being the one doing more "work" to free him up for you.
The rest of it is just coping.
Involve yourself with after work projects cooking for the week, a class, a personal project, friends, family, reading, movies, exercise. If you've ever wanted to foster interests outside of your job, now is the time. Any languages you want to learn? Household stuff that needs renovating? These things give you a fuller life you'll begin to identify with him better and help the time fly till you see him next. My SO and I are long distance, and he's in the second year of his graduate program.
This means that even when I fly out there to spend time with him, he doesn't have much to spend. Is this a choice on his part? He would spend more time with me if he could, but right now getting succesfully through grad school is more important than spending time with me, and I accept that. As a naturally needy person myself, it can be hard sometimes. And I totally feel your guilt about being the "easy" girlfriend. I am always thinking that I am supposed to be the one stress-free thing in his life!
When I'm there, I insist on two things that have really helped make things bearable: If this means I wait until 8 p. He's not allowed to have his computer at dinner, and I am not allowed to bring a book. The needs of the many namely, his family will always outweigh your needs.
His family will always come first, and that includes his wife. Simply because he talks in a negative way about his marriage doesn't mean that his obligations to his wife are any less important to him. Whether or not they have children is a moot point; he will always feel as if he has to be a husband to her and take care of the marriage, whether he truly loves her or not.
Their life together includes friendships and a social network that is shared and comfortable for him. He won't risk losing that. His life with you is secret and always will be. No matter how much you may want to walk in the sunshine with him and have him openly acknowledge his love for you, it won't happen. While he is more than willing to be your lover and to bring you gifts, he is not about to have you meet his friends and risk having his family find out about you.
No matter how nice a guy he is, you are a temporary diversion for him. This is not an easy statement to comprehend. Unfortunately it is true. The beginning of an affair is romantic and naughty at the same time.
Planning to be together becomes a fascinating game and is thrilling to say the least. Stealing hours from work or home to have sex is exciting, and you may mistake his libido-driven passion for undying love. The game soon becomes a chore for him, and romantic interludes are just one more thing he "has to do. He will not leave his wife. Less than 5 percent of men leave their wives for the woman with whom they are having an affair.
Whether it is because of all the legal and financial problems attached to divorce, religious beliefs or the fact that they have become comfortable with their marriage the way it is -- or even because they still have a certain affection for their wives, men rarely end up with the other woman. Even Katharine Hepburn knew, and accepted, this fact during her long affair with Spencer Tracy.
And don't ever kid yourself on this important point: He is still having sex with his wife, no matter what you may want to believe. Legally, financially and emotionally, you have no claim. You may realize that you have no claim legally or financially, but you would think there'd be an emotional attachment or bond between you and your lover. In fact there usually isn't after the affair is over.
Even though he has a deep feeling of love for you, he is able to process it in an unemotional way. He's not a bad guy, he may be a wonderfully kind person, but he is also a practical one. He knows that holding on to emotions that can only cause problems for his family is something he cannot and will not do.