I really need a listening ear…

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    I almost feel silly talking about this, however you all are such an awesome bunch I thought I would get it off my chest here. I have been in a relationship with a really great guy for the last 3.5 years and we were friends for 2 years before that. He is my best friend. He is the father of my youngest child. And we have always been able to talk to each other about anything. He has always known that my dream has been to become a physician and he seemed 100% supportive of that until I made the decision to actually pursue it a year ago. Up till then, I really dont think he thought I was serious. He has not verbally come out against my decision and in fact he says he is behind me and will support me. However, I feel he thinks this is some sort of phase I am going through and after a while I will come back to my “old” self. When I discuss my dreams and ambitions with him he is about as excited as wearing wool in the desert and I get the cool treatment when I say I really need to study instead of watching boxing on T.V. I really want him to want this for me..and I want to share my experiences with him. I dont want this to be a “my” thing but a “we” thing. Am I expecting too much? And if so, what should I expect? Also, do any of you have any pointers on how I might be able to make him feel more included?


    Hi Chan,

    Although I think it is really important that he be 100% behind you in terms of support, I think it is expecting too much to expect this to be “our thing” (in his eyes) rather than “your thing”. He should be aware of the reality of the sacrifices that will need to be made by the family, and accepting of that and the financial burden of this path. But expecting him to be as excited about your dream as you are is maybe too much to ask.

    This is your dream, not his. Support comes in many different ways, and even though he may not seem excited about the steps you are taking, or may not want to talk about it, doesn’t mean he doesn’t support you. I think you should acknowledge that (with him), but also have the BIG talk about the reality issues and make sure that he is okay with all of that.

    Good luck, Mimi




    You are in a hard situation. I thought to ask you: have you and your boyfriend really talked about this together? Does he feel free to express what he thinks/feels about the situation? Have you asked him specifically how he feels about it?

    Some men (and women, for that matter) have a hard time expressing themselves, especially if they feel there is “no way out” of the situation. (like, no matter what he says or thinks, you are going to do it anyway, so, why even try…)

    If I were in your situation, I would take an evening and sit down with my man. I would first tell him how happy I was to be in the relationship with him, express my admiration for different qualities he has, tell him how much he means to me, how my relationship with him is my first priority. Then, I would tell him that I want him to be happy, and at the same time, I want to follow my dreams. I would express to him how important it is to me that he shares with me how he feels about my career choice…because I love him and I want him to be happy too.

    My husband sometimes seems to feel a little threatend by my super ambitious personality. In my relationship, I have needed to remind him that he, as my husband, is my first priority.(by saying it and doing things that show I mean it) He really feels better after we have these types of talks. I know it probably sounds a little obsessive, but we really love each other and try to communicate our needs and desires in a non-threatening way. He does the same for me, and it makes for a very happy marriage I might add! 😉

    As far as the sitting with him to watch boxing thing…

    I would ask him during our talk what kind of things he needs to be happy in the relationship (for my husband and I, we love to surf together, and he enjoys just spending time with me outdoors) so, I try and make that a priority.

    I know it’s not an easy thing, trying to coordinate your desires with the feelings of another. I hope it works out for you.

    …just my $.02




    Hi Chan,
    I read your message and was reminded a little of myself several years ago. I got married (8.5 mos pregnant!) while still in community college, with dreams of going to med school. My husband always said he was supportive of my goals. I was a little surprised when during the application process he told me that he “always thought something else would catch my interest, a he never really thought I would go through with med school”! He was still supportive, but was worried about moving, and most especially about my soon-to-be colleagues looking down on him because he is a construction worker. I think he felt like he was going to be left out of my new and exciting career. I have a step-daughter who we were very involved with (she stayed at our place every weekend, and came over frequently during the week). We were very worried that I would not get into the one school that was 2 hrs from her (except Vanderbilt, also 2 hrs from us, but didn’t even send a secondary!).
    Well, we went on interviews together as much as possible, and ended up in the school 2 hrs from our hometown. Thank God! My husband makes the 4-5 hr round trip drive almost every weekend still. I do it when possible. It really was a lot to ask, but thank heavens it worked out.
    I made some of the greatest friends here, and none of them looked down snobby noses because my husband is blue collar. I’m sure there are some class members who do, but they’re not my friends. There are all kinds of folks in med school, from all kinds of different backgrounds.
    I think he still worries about it, though.
    There is a lot of work for a med school dad, and you should talk to your man about that. My husband has become superdad since med school, cooks A LOT, and does a lot of the ferrying to and from activities. I try to take up the slack during less busy times. Even though he was apprehensive in the beginning, he really came through when push came to shove. Sometimes there is angst between us as I have worked up to 120 hrs during rotataions, and even though he works only 40 hrs, he is really beat by the end of the day. We do eat out a lot during really busy times. The one thing he seemed completely unwilling to do was make me choose between my dreams and him. Even through the questions and worries he never once suggested I should rethink med school.
    Good luck to you, I hope everything works out!

    CaLiGirL :)CaLiGirL:)


    My husband started off as a non-supportive one, but changed whole-heartedly to a very supportive one. He does feel threatened at times (like many other husbands) that one day he may find himself left behind due to my ambitious nature.

    I would have to agree with what the others have stated. Do things here and there to make him feel that he is your #1. Yes, it’s a good thing to have him involved with your ambitions. However, unless those are his dreams as well he can only be involved so much. Rather than focusing on involving him in your dreams, give him as many opportunities to be involved with you.

    In the end, I’m sure everything will work out for you two. Just keep the foundation that you guys have built together strong. While you’re busy working towards your dreams and still presenting yourself as the wife he fell in love with, he’ll be happy just because you’re happy…that’s the power of love.

    I wish you and your man all the luck. Take care! 😉



    There’s also a place near me that does hourly child care – it’s called “Gimmie a Break”. I was wary at first, but it’s actually pretty nice. You have to fill out an appication and show shot records, etc, the first time. Also, Pass4sure a+ practice test
    they are usually full, but you could have a standing reservation to bring your kid in on certain days.

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