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Question
Posted by: Tess | 2004/11/19

Irresponsible behaviour (in my opinion)

Dear Cyberdoc

My husband resigned from his job about three years ago, and he and a coworker started a business. I was not happy about it as we had recently bought our first house, and I thought it was too much of a risk. Needless to say the business did not go well and his business partner went to the UK, as he could not renew his visa. My husband carried on for a while but basically could not keep the work coming in as he is a quiet reserved kind of guy and cant sell himself. He was then obviously in financial trouble as he could not find a job. Fortunately I have a reasonably good job and picked up the slack where I could, but money was very tight. We then had to move home and when I started looking for another house he told me that he was in more financial trouble than I was aware of. Things had not been going well between us as I have a hard time dealing with insecurity and he was not looking for a job just waiting for one to show up. I could not believe he had run up thousands of rands worth of debt and did not tell me about it. Anyway to cut a long story short I sold the house, gave him his share to sort out his financial problems and asked him to sort out his life. We spent three months apart and then we got back together again. He is working half day at one company and half day at another company so money wise he is ok. What worries me is that even before I left him he does not open his mail. He has not done his taxes for last year and when I bring it up he closes up on me. He says he is terrified of it. I offered to do it for him, but I need his help getting all the paperwork together. The thing is if he does not learn to cope with this kind of "administratium" he will always have a fear of it. Should I just take over and keep on top of his paperwork or do I leave it up to him to sort out. He is a MENSA member so we are not talking about "cant" here we are talking about "wont" or "dont want to". The thing is I am a working mom with three kids, a hell of a demanding job full of deadlines and I am studying to finish my degree, I also love him without question and am working hard on our relationship, so that we dont end up where we were before. I just feel I have enough to deal with and taking on his problems as well just feels like a burden I dont want. Should he go for counselling to get over his fear of paperwork, the Receiver of Revenue is a name you dont even mention in the house (he makes "get behind me satan" signs). At the end of the day when the Receiver finds him he is going to be liable for a hell of a lot of fines and penalties which I will probably end up paying. Any advice will be appreciated.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Sounds like he's almost phobic about areas like taxes that he feels he just can't cope with. Some of us are just totally incompetent at money matters, but he sounds competent enough, but maybe affected by excess anxiety about such tasks. If he would acept counselling, it could help him. And your offer to do it all for him is an offer far too good for him to refuse !

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Our users say:
Posted by: Jenna | 2004/11/19

Shoo, you are one strong woman, I really admire you! Your hubby does seem to have a few fears which is holding him back. I say keep at it, don't give up on him. Some people just need to a little push. Also, maybe he is depressed because of all his financial issues and he can't seem to get things done. Whatever the case, keep standing by him, your hard work will pay off.

good luck

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