Friday, February 16, 2007

Washing one's dirty laundry in public....

Those of you who have been regular readers may be vaguely aware that I have a few issues with the concept of marriage....strange to relate one of those issues - thanks to my parents having such a well balanced set up - has never been the fear of messy, argued over finances.

Whilst my brother and I were growing up my mother didn't work...given where we were living half the time, she probably couldn't have done. However, all during that time and to this present father's salary was managed by both of them...and my mother never, ever had to ask for money...whatever she wanted was hers and I think throughout my entire life I have never heard my parents argue over money. My mother now works full time, both salaries get paid into the same account...and there's still no arguing...

However, reading two articles in the Daily Mail recently made me realise that maybe life is not so simple for everyone...granted, this couple are slightly different from the norm, in that the wife is the breadwinner....but still, the principle is the same.

Sidling into Lauren's office, I can feel my palms getting sweaty. As she drums her fingers on the desk, I have only to close my eyes and I'm aged 11, hopping up and down on one foot, pleading with Mum for cash to buy a Beano comic and a packet of gobstoppers.

But Lauren isn't my mum: she's my wife. We're supposed to be equals. I'm 39 years old and, by rights, should be at the peak of my career, adored by my kids, admired and pampered by my grateful missus. Instead, I'm a househusband with not a penny to my name.

That's why I'm here, cap in hand, asking for £10 pocket money to buy a round of drinks. No wonder I feel humiliated.

Like any woman, Lauren is utterly unpredictable. She might be the main breadwinner but, safe to say, she has definitely not lost this particular feminine streak. Some days her pink purse (yes, really) snaps open and she hands over a wodge of cash with no questions asked and only a dismissive wave of her hand.

Other times, one eyebrow will shoot up quizzically and I know I'm in for the third degree: 'How much money exactly? What's it for? Don't I know she's not made of money?'

All the wheedling in the world won't make a jot of difference when she's in this sort of mood. Slinking out of the door empty-handed, I feel like throttling someone - preferably my wife.

The Wife's story
The Husband's story



Blogger the amateur misanthrope said...

Perfect title. It pretty much sums up the issue.

7:34 am  

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