My Wife Earns More Than Me But Refuses to Help My Elderly Parents

Family & kids
3 weeks ago

A 35-year-old man reached out to us to share a challenging situation he's facing within his family. He expressed his frustration over his wife's refusal to assist his parents financially and support them. He's puzzled by her behavior, especially considering how differently she treats her own parents.

Patrick is feeling extremely distressed about the state of his family affairs.

Patrick, a 35-year-old man, reached out to us to share a challenging situation he's facing within his family. He expressed frustration and disappointment regarding his wife's treatment of his parents compared to her own.

In his letter, Patrick explained, "Laura and I have been happily married for over 5 years. She earns significantly more than I do, with her high-paying job in the private sector. We've always shared our finances, with her contributing 70% and me 30%."

He further elaborated on their family backgrounds, stating, "Laura's parents migrated to our country to provide a better life for their daughters. Both Laura and her sister, Margaret, have successful careers, with Laura as an architect and Margaret as a surgeon. On the other hand, my parents have lower-income jobs, and I'm the only child. So, there's a notable contrast in our family financial situations."

Laura provides financial assistance to her parents every month.

Reflecting on Laura’s treatment of her parents, Patrick remarked, “Laura has always had a special bond with her parents. Recently, they retired, and Laura and her sister, Margaret, provide them with financial assistance amounting to $3,000 each month, which I find excessive considering they have pensions. I can’t comprehend why they need $6,000.”

Addressing the financial disparity, Patrick added, “Laura assured me that this money doesn’t come from our joint account. However, when I proposed supporting my retired parents similarly, Laura’s response was unexpected. She suggested that if I could afford to help them from my own earnings, I should do so. This left me feeling shocked and frustrated. My parents only have me to rely on, whereas Laura and her sister are financially stable, making her parents comfortable regardless.”

Patrick firmly believes that this situation is unfair.

He explained, “My dad suffers from Parkinson’s disease, and his health is deteriorating rapidly. Doctors have warned us that his condition will only worsen over time. Additionally, my mom is also facing health issues and lacks the physical strength to care for my dad’s needs. Unfortunately, we cannot afford a live-in caregiver, so the only viable option is to place my dad in a care facility, which means separating him from my mom. It’s frustrating because Laura knows about their situation, and her parents are currently in good health.”

He concluded, “Laura offering financial assistance wouldn’t significantly impact her finances but would greatly benefit my parents. I can’t help but feel she’s being selfish because if our positions were reversed, I would unquestionably support her and her parents.”

He chose to seek his parents' perspective.

Patrick expressed his frustrations about his wife's reluctance to help his parents financially. He confided, "I recently had a phone call with my parents to vent about this unfair situation. I needed someone to talk to. My mom and dad listened to me, but they sided with Laura, saying she wasn't obligated to assist them financially. They believe our family should handle all our challenges independently. I expected this response from them, but I think they need to change their mindset."

Reflecting on the situation, Patrick pondered, "I'm not sure who's right anymore. Is it wrong for me to ask my wife to support my parents? It still feels like a reasonable request to me."

We have another story about a husband and wife, and it’s full of unexpected turns. A 38-year-old woman wrote to us about a painful discovery she made recently. She found out why her husband was hiding his best friend from her, and now she’s feeling confused and doesn’t know what to do next.

Preview photo credit marymarkevich / Freepik

Comments

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These parents probably spent their fortune educating their children, now that they are being supported and taken care of by them, that's a good thing and you don't need to be upset about it or to force your wife to support your own parents.She is paying her parents back for the education they equipped her with.

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Why would you think she is selfish and it’s unfair when she is contributing 70% and you are contributing 30% with your finances?

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The wife is just doing what she thinks is fair, she helped her parents from her own earnings since its her responsibility to give something back, if you have the means, as a son you can do the same, don't rely on your wife.

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Since your wife is paying 70 percent on all of the household expenses and you only pay 30% you should have 70 percent of your income left...so go ahead and assist your parents...it is not her responsibility.

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