Hey there, what do you do if your husband gets a pay cut and is sad about it? Make sure he knows that as long as he is manly manly man man manly taking care of you in a manly way, nothing else matters! This is taken from Dr. Laura’s YouTube channel.
The question: “My husband’s position in a public school system has been eliminated due to severe budget cuts. [That’s happening everywhere, isn’t it?] On a positive note, due to his union, he has ‘bumping rights’ to a different position with the same benefits at a lesser pay of 5 percent. Although he still gets paid very well, he is not a happy camper. He finds it humiliating and demeaning.
Dr. Laura, I know you can’t make someone else happy and that it comes from ABOVE and WITHIN, but is there some way I can help him realize how blessed he/we are? Help me to help get back the man I married who seemed happy then.”
Dr. Laura’s answer: OK. First thing you need to do is to say to him, “That is a bummer. That is a crummy feeling. 5 percent, 50 percent – it doesn’t matter. That’s a real downer. You’ve worked hard, you deserve more, and it’s just a shame that the economy is going the way it is and that you can’t get what you deserve. And I’ve got to tell you, I am so proud of you, that even with this annoyance, you are rising to the occasion, being a man, and taking care of your family. As a matter of fact, it makes me more horny about you.” I think that would work.
Dr. Susan’s answer: ARGH. How demeaning is it to be told that as long as you are “taking care of the family [economically],” you are worth something? Lots of people get pay cuts, and lots of people lose jobs, and basically, what Dr. Laura is saying is, “as long as the money is rolling in, even if it’s less than before, you have value to me.” There are ways to be valuable to a family that aren’t gendered. Lots of ways! Maybe he makes dinner, maybe he cuts the lawn, maybe he takes the kids to story hour at the library, maybe he gives a mean back massage, maybe he tells the greatest jokes.
On the surface, sure. Support your husband and let him know that this isn’t a big deal and you love him and find him attractive and value him. But the underlying message is “if you stop taking care of the family [economically],” you are not a man, you are not able to rise to the occasion, and I find you unattractive. This is a bandaid solution that will fall apart if there are further cuts and an actual job loss.
People in relationships contribute in lots of ways. It’s possible (I know because this is how my family works) for the woman to take care of the family economically. I KNOW, RIDICULOUS. That doesn’t mean that the man is obsolete, and that doesn’t mean that the relationship fails. On the contrary, it means that each partner is able to play to their individual strengths and when something like a job loss happens, nobody feels like less of a human because of it.