I have been in a committed relationship for several months now. He and I moved in together several months back and now he's proposed.
I know I love him with all my heart. But I have this nagging feeling about the fact that, while we've been together, he's lost two jobs and I pay the majority of the bills. I know he is out actively looking for work, but I wonder once he gets a job, how long it will last. I have even caught myself resenting the fact I have to pay most of the bills and I am taking care of him instead of us taking care of each other. Call me old fashioned, but I am worried he might be lazy!
I have dreams and I have ambitions. If I have to support us both, I just don't know if I can actually achieve what I want to in my life -- and I don't know if I can be happy with someone who can't hold down a job and pull his weight.
Am I horrible? I do love him. I know that. But I don't know if this is the start of a pattern. Can you help?
You are not a horrible person for having these thoughts. In fact, you're being extremely responsible to think through this now -- before you are married. And, I am not sure you're going to like what I have to say about this ... but you asked and I'm gonna say it ...
This definitely is a pattern. While the jury is still out on whether your guy is destined to always be lazy, the verdict is most definitely in on the fact he's perfectly comfortable letting you pay the bills, foot the responsibility of the household AND bear the burden of making sure you have food, water and all the other essentials.
My advice to you would be not to marry this guy until you are sure he is dedicated to keeping a job and contributing to the success of your marriage financially. As you probably know, most divorces are caused by finances -- and a lazy-ass boyfriend before marriage will most definitely become a lazy-ass husband. Maybe the answer is to tell him he must keep a job for several months before you get married. Or, that he must work, pull his weight, and put aside savings to support a few month's worth of expenses should he lose his job after marriage.
Look, I don't doubt you love him. I don't even doubt that all this aside, he makes you happy. But this isn't a silly habit you can overlook. This is your livelihood and well being. Caring about how you are going to pay rent/utilities and eat does not make you a selfish or shallow person. It makes you a realist. Wonder if a kid comes into the picture later on? It will only get worse.
Your guy needs to prove to you he can be a provider, a partner and a helpmate. That's the simple truth. He also needs to show you he can support your pursuits and passions -- just as you've supported his lack of work for the last several months. He needs to show you he can take care of you and whomever else comes along. It's not old fashioned. It's not shallow. It's how marriage works.
Think long and hard about your next move. You shouldn't go into marriage with a strike against you -- and if you married him now, that's what you'd be doing. Your goals, your ambitions, etc -- they're all important -- and you two, as a couple -- as partners have to agree to what you're working towards. If only one is working, then um ... you're not going to get very far and your burdens will only get heavier and heavier -- especially if all he does is sit on his fat ass on the couch every single day eating potato chips.
OK. So that last line was uncalled for -- but I couldn't help it. Good luck to you and please let me know what you decide. I'm here if you need me!