Q&A: Approaching my workaholic husband

Q: My husband is a workaholic – he spends very little time with me and our sons, but when I approach him, he simply says, “Things will be better soon.” Do you have any suggestions?

A: Men are wired to provide for their wives and children. But some men become so focused on their role as the provider that they end up neglecting the emotional and relational needs of their wives and children. Far too many dads in our society fit this description.

Your husband needs love, support, and encouragement in order to feel good about himself not only as a provider but as a husband, a father, and a person. But remember that none of us respond well to nagging or demands.           

We’d suggest planning a dinner out with your husband on a weekend – get a sitter, go to a nice restaurant, etc. Put aside your frustration and reinforce how much you love him and appreciate his work ethic and his dedication to his role as family provider. At the same time, be honest and let him know that his job seems to be taking precedence over his family. Tell him you value his involvement as a father, and ask him if he’d be willing to examine his schedule and work together with you to make some changes. 

If you can deliver this message in a spirit of love and concern rather than bitterness and anger, you may be surprised at how positively he responds – although don’t expect complete change overnight. But if he denies there’s a problem, it may be time to seek professional help. You can start by contacting our Family Support Services at 03-7954 7920 or write to support@family.org.my.

© 2018 Focus on the Family.  All rights reserved.  Used by permission.

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