“After marriage he started pressurizing me to immediately try to take up a well paying job because otherwise how will he do an MBA… ”

Sharing an email.

Hi IHM,
I love reading your blog, and completely agree with much of what you write, like the Indian patriarchal joint family being the reason Indians are son obsessed and abort girls.
I also love reading the views and discussions on your blog.
I would be grateful if you could feature my story on your blog, as I’d like to know what your readers have to say about this situation I’m in.

I am a 27+ Indian female, I got married a year back in an arranged marriage.My husband is 31, 4 years older to me. Both of us are only children, and while he comes from a pretty rich family with huge property etc, I too come from a well off background. My husband had done a Masters in Finance and Accounting followed by a CPA. He works in a bank in London. He had tried applying for British citizenship thrice and got rejected thrice. His salary has stagnated for the last two years.

His friends, who are top investment bankers and consultants and MBA’s from top schools in India, earn two and a half to three times what he does, they’ve bought apartments in London entirely with their own money.

He now says that he hopes to do an MBA from London Business School or if he doesn’t get through London Business School then from some “top” school in USA. That is how he says he can catch up with his IIT/IIM investment banker and consultant buddies. I think its difficult to ever catch up with them, given how high they’ve moved in their careers, also he says he won’t do consulting as there’s “no life”.

I have moved to London to live with him.

Before marriage, he had mentioned that he’d recently applied for British citizenship but didn’t mention that he’d been rejected twice before or that he’d applied twice before. Thus, we had no idea that he’s such a London freak.

He had also never mentioned that he plans to do an MBA, especially that he plans to go to USA for his MBA for two years. The topic of MBA had come up briefly in our conversations when I’d mentioned that all my male cousins are IIT and/or IIM A grads. He got very annoyed that day saying that he’s not an IIT IIM, and if I don’t like it I shouldn’t marry him. His mom had also called up my mom saying that their son is very upset, and that if I’d wanted to marry an IIT, IIM guy, I shouldn’t have spoken to their son.I had then apologized and said I had no desire to belittle him, I was only mentioning my cousins settled abroad.

Even in all this, he never mentioned that he wanted to do an MBA, or that he’d given his GMAT twice before in the last year. We’d also mentioned many times to them that I am not at all a career oriented girl.

After marriage he started pressurizing me to immediately try to take up a well paying job because otherwise how will he do an MBA, who will earn and who will stay in London with a job while he goes off to USA to do an MBA (he feels he wants to come back to London to look for a job after doing his MBA in ase he doesn’t get a campus placement in London, and if his wife is not working there, it won’t be possible for him to do that.

As I said, his family is very well off and they’d had bought him a lovely apartment in a posh locality in London for which his dad paid the down payment and he’s paying the EMI.

He wants someone who’ll pay the EMI now while he fulfills his “dream” of doing an MBA.

His mom had called up my mom and said that while he does his MBA in USA, I can take up a job and remain behind in London as I’d then be earning in pounds and can pay the emi. My mom was furious on hearing this, especially since before marriage they’d mentioned that they’d rejected one software engineer girl already because she wanted to go to USA for one year on a project and the entire purpose of marriage is to live together, so why should they spring this surprise now upon us of me having to live alone in London for two years?

My husband will be 32/33 when he starts his MBA and 33/35 when he completes it, depending on where he gets in.

When I asked him why he didn’t mention his MBA in USA plans before marriage, he said I should’ve specifically asked him whether he plans to do an MBA.

I find it difficult to accept that, I feel if a 30+ man is getting married, he should’ve ideally completed all his education and educational “dreams” (stuff like PHD and Post Doc are different, as you earn while you study those stuff) but stuff like MBA’s, not even Executive MBA’s should be ideally completed in the Indian context. (I feel the same even if this was a 30+ woman btw)

If they’re not, and if the entire expectation is that the wife who is 4 years younger will run the house, pay the EMI and bills etc and keep a footing in London for the hubby to come back and job hunt, while the husband does an MBA in USA then that should be mentioned before marriage.

I completely understand that in the modern context, it is often expected that both husband and wife work and earn, but in an arranged marriage, with a 30+ husband having “dreams” to do an MBA post marriage with the wife living & working alone in London, it should be mentioned.

Instead all they’d mentioned was that they’re very against “long distance relationships” and they’d cancelled a girl who wanted to go to USA for just one year, because the “very purpose” of marriage was being together.

I had also told him before marriage that I might open a business in London, to which he’d said okay, now he strictly wants me to get a high paying job.

I am an only child and I’ve always “loved” kids and had hopes of being a mom, and soon. In fact, I’d often told my friends and relatives that I’m getting married because I love babies and want my own ones.

I am 27+ now, and I would ideally start trying for a family now, or by the time I’m 28, so that I could have my first child by 30.

My husband says he can’t even think of children, because they’re unaffordable given his salary in London, but he can’t think of going anywhere else(except for his education). If he does his MBA, I’ll be 31+ when he completes it, his mom and all my three paternal aunts had hysterectomies due to cysts and fibroids in their early thirties, I’m very worried I’ll also suffer from such stuff then.

I also feel cheated with this whole MBA lie.

What should I do? I have contemplated divorce

Sharanya – the OP

EDITED TO ADD:

Please read these comments by Sharanya – the OP before responding.

1.

@Fem

I’m an Office Assistant btw, a Secretary, a PA. How easy is it for someone like me to
1) quickly land a high paying job in a foreign country
2) pay the EMI for quite a big apartment and maintain a decent standard of living for myself?

He had also told his parents that he wanted a ” very beautiful” wife as he comes from such a high status family, I don’t want to sound vain but I am quite attractive. He also wanted someone who was traditional and homely and I ticked their checklist about these qualities.

However i’ve never been very bright academically nor has my career taken off brilliantly. I made it all clear to them and I thought its obvious anyway.

I’ve met some very bright girls in UK who earn a lot, my husband & his parents should’ve ideally searched for such a girl.

His best friend, that Mc Kinsey guy’s wife doesn’t work, she’s studying something and her husband funds her education, they had a love marriage and dated for 5 years before marriage, he also sends 1000 GBP (this becomes a big sum in INR) to his in laws every month as her father passed away early and she has three younger sisters and a mom who needs the money.All this was agreed before marriage.

He can afford such a wife, my husband can’t afford a Secretary wife and we wouldn’t have agreed to the match anyway had I known all these plans.

This was an arranged marriage and one of the biggest foundation of future love, respect & trust is truthful disclosure of all facts before marriage, which was trust king in our case.

2. Sharanya – the OP on February 24, 2014 at 1:08 pm said:

3. Sharanya – the OP on February 24, 2014 at 12:34 pm said:

4. Sharanya – the OP on February 24, 2014 at 12:04 pm said:

5. Sharanya – the OP on February 24, 2014 at 11:47 am said:

6. Sharanya – the OP on February 24, 2014 at 9:38 am said:

Related Posts:

An email from a Mother in law.

Reply from the Indian mother in law.

“Although my in laws maintain a facade of being content with what they have and never asking the girl’s side for anything…”

Some basic questions on joint family finances and daughters in law.

Instead of eyeing their husbands’ ancestral property, why don’t Indian daughters in law make their own homes?

An email: Can a woman be married off with a promise to the in laws, that her father would find a job for her?

166 thoughts on ““After marriage he started pressurizing me to immediately try to take up a well paying job because otherwise how will he do an MBA… ”

  1. Gosh! This is so terrible. It looks like he has married you just to make an income out of you and use it to pay for the EMI and go on accomplish his goals. Why does anyone want to marry when they are so ready to leave a wife behind and go on live somewhere else!?:-/

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    • Well, she would not have married him either if he did not have a lot of money too. This was an arranged marriage where both partners were rich & there were some unwritten expectations.

      People do have long term relationships, sometimes. It is okay, if both partners agree and decide it is good for them & they have a plan in place for getting back together.

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      • Indeed, expectations are from both sides. But to not inform of such a life changing interest before marriage and to force it on her, to make her give up her wishes to satisfy his own is not quite right. He should have informed her of his plans even before getting her involved in his life.

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        • @NP – I agree.
          //But to not inform of such a life changing interest before marriage and to force it on her, to make her give up her wishes to satisfy his own is not quite right.//

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    • If a wife tells husband, similar to the same scenario here, that she’d want to do an MBA/study further, then would you still say the same?Agreed that he should have said this but it is all about supporting each other right?

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      • Supporting him is one thing but he demanding that she pays EMIs for something he bought before the marriage while she does’t even have a job or a salary that can cover the EMIs. It’s an impossible expectation, quite frankly, and would still be an impossible expectation if the genders were reversed.

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  2. Hmm… 2 partners with differing ideas/goals in life.
    – You could try talking it out & go to US with him?
    – I think the problem here is one of constant comparison with others. I think both of you need to reevaluate, are you okay with what you have for your needs/desires, can you improve your financial standing than comparing what others are earning etc.
    – Why not try for MBA in London. Aren’t there other schools except LSE?
    – Why not just look for a better job?

    Go to a counselor. Hash things out. Stop running to your parents because they cannot solve issues between both of you.

    Why, oh why do we spend more time selecting a dress than a partner?

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  3. So, first things first. I agree that studying for two years without income is a big deal, and it is a decision that you need to have been informed about.. Adding to it the fact that you are expected to stay in London (no choice about it) and work to pay the EMIs (no choice about it) while your husband goes to study and pursue his dreams. It does sound like this is all about your husband.

    But. Throughout your letter I felt a pulse of betrayed expectations. You “expected” your arranged marriage to come with a set of certainties – fixed income, high paying jobs, house purchased by FIL, eventually kids, not moving around. It is almost like before the wedding your family and your husband’s family had a back and forth about the “terms and conditions” according to which your marriage should be conducted. Now that your husband is violating those terms and conditions, you are feeling disappointed. You want us to sympathize with you and confirm that indeed, yes, your expectations are perfectly valid and how dare he suddenly spring this MBA thing on you.In other words, the pulse of your letter feels like (and I could be wrong about this) you are more bothered by the fact that he has not lived up to the pre-wedding-verbal-arranged-marriage-contract, than about the fact that his no-two-ways-about-it-expectation that you have to live in London and work a high paying job while you want to have your own business with no room for negotiation is demeaning to your self-respect.

    It is this violation-of-contract-betrayal that I question.

    I’m not married, but soon to be. I’ve known the guy I’m marrying for 8 years, and dated him for 3. I’m going into marriage absolutely looking forward to it. I’m a big fan of this idea of two compatible friends exploring their worlds together. I know the guy I’m married has certain dreams, as I do. We’ve talked about those. There are layers we don’t know about each other – fears we sometimes can’t articulate, hopes that we desperately hope the other person catches on, because we may be too shy to articulate them. Maybe we will become more communicative in the future. Even if not, I hope we love each other enough to make accommodations for their hopes and fears, even if we privately think they are silly. That kind of compassion is very important in a marriage, no?

    The other thing is dreams are not things we have to fulfill by age 30 so that we can get on with our lives. Personal growth is a part of life. I have no dreams to run a marathon now, but I may have it when I am 50. I’m entering into marriage having acknowledged that that is true for me and him. A reasonable couple in my opinion talks about such decisions, making sure they are not stepping on the other person’s toes, but articulating their desires and wishes freely.

    It does not seem like your marriage has that space or freedom.

    Your husband does not realize that in this case, his dreams are at the expense of yours.

    You are completely fixated on the fact that he has not lived up to his contract.

    In fact, you say things like your husband may have a complex about not having an MBA, in a manner that could be read as being dismissive. It does not seem like you have respect for your husband as a human being, though I may be wrong. If you loved your husband, wouldn’t that make you concerned? Clearly, the MBA is very important for his ego. His values seem to be on the scale of his consultant friends. But your e-mail makes no mention of love. That is very bothersome. Even if you think your parents hooking you up with someone is best for you, why marry someone you don’t or won’t be able to love?

    Your husband does not seem to love you either. He took on a house his dad had bought for him and has been paying off EMIs on it. And he seems nonchalant about the fact that you will be paying them while he studies and there is no option B.

    I would suggest that you try couples counselling and see if you can be compatible, whether you can respect each other, whether you want remotely similar things in life. If you do contemplate divorce, let it be for the right reasons – that you don’t seem to love each other and respect each other – than because he did not live up to the contract.

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  4. It all sounds terrible. I am sorry hes putting you through this. Marriage is team work and he doesn’t get to force his choices on you. Its wrong.

    As someone who’s starting a MBA in six months here a few facts for you. Its no easy feat getting into London business school and even though its in the top 5 schools in the world their campus placements have been dropping since the past two years due to the economy in London. His chances of being accepted into a top 15 school anywhere in world at the age of 31/32 cuts his chances by 30% as business schools are trying to reduce the avg age of the class to 27-28. A US MBA is a debt of 150,000$ which takes about 5-7 years to even break even. I think if hes miserable about not making it big, hes only going to get worse post-MBA. His finances are going to drop for a few years post-MBA or even worse he’ll depend on you, your family and his family to pay off his school debt.

    Its your choice that you want to have a baby. Did you have a conversation about children before you decided to marry him? Did you tell him you wanted to have kids before the age of 30? May be you are forcing your choice of having a baby on him?

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    • I disagree with PD here. I have done a one-year MBA from a top school in India. The difference between my salary pre-and-post MBA (this is true for most of my batchmates as well) is almost 100%. True, I have to pay off a huge education loan, but I am able to prepay it very comfortably. Even if I were not to prepay it, I would be able to pay it off within 7 years.

      7 years is not a long time in a career span of 30 years.

      The value add of an MBA is that it changes the entire graph of your career. I am already reporting to the CEO of my company. There is no way I could have hoped to do so in my pre-MBA job. With the MBA, I hope to reach a CXO level role in the next 10-15 years. Again, no way is it possible without an MBA.

      I am saying all this because PD seemed to be unduly pessimistic about the prospects of an MBA in the following lines: ” I think if hes miserable about not making it big, hes only going to get worse post-MBA. His finances are going to drop for a few years post-MBA or even worse he’ll depend on you, your family and his family to pay off his school debt.” And, I think, it is wrong to be scare-mongering the LW that her husband will depend on her family to pay off his school debt without knowing him at all. Most people pay off their education debts themselves.

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      • It is one thing “wanting” an MBA, “expecting” to get a wonderful job and a better salary with better chances of career growth post MBA. Definitely it should be possible. However, if as the LW says here he is not willing to work as hard as others do and wants a job with fixed timings, then it certainly is not going to work. No pains, no gains.

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  5. Can you rent the apartment in London and go to US with him for his MBA? The rent can cover the monthly mortgage at least partially.

    Can he look into part time MBA programs?

    Does he (& you) want to work/live long term in US or UK? Is US MBA even all that well regarded in UK? Do UK companies actively recruit in US schools? Biggest advantage of a top MBA is networking and recruiting, do those align with his (and your) long term goals?

    How will he pay for the MBA? Take loans? parents paying for it?

    I find it odd he is comparing salaries with his IIT/IIM friends who are in investment banking/consulting but he thinks consulting has “no life” and won’t do it. Well most high paying jobs post MBA such ibanking/consulting/PE/hedge funds all have crazy 100-120 hour weeks. He likely won’t have a “life” in either of those fields if he is going for pure prestige and money. I think he really needs to evaluate and understand what he wants to do post MBA, trust me this will be one of the most important aspect of his MBA application anyway. Top MBA schools critically evaluate why people want the degree, he better have a more convincing story if he wants to get in.
    If he simply believes a MBA will be panacea to all his career woes without any concrete plans, I am afraid he might be in for nasty surprise after two years (and a ton of money/debt)

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  6. looks like getting an MBA is what he ‘wants’ ….. It has to be a very costly course, especially if one is going for it without a scholarship.I don’t think being 31 necessarily means you are past the age for higher education….but I do agree that he should have informed these plans to his wife prior to marriage….I don’t think pressurizing a person to give up his/her career aspirations and forcing him to start a family would help..also forcing a person to give up his/her need to start a family and force him/her to do a job he/she hates is not going to help either…it should have been discussed before marriage…….as earlier comments suggests, the wife can try for a job visa in us and since both of them are from well off families plus both are only child of their respective homes, I guess financial help could be sought from the parents if they are in a position to help, you can always pay back after two years

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  7. Tricky situation.

    If a wife, already has a well paying job, and is not planning on motherhood, and wants to and agrees to support her husband, while he gives up his job to study further to improve his career prospects, then it is a great partnership between a great couple. I have known such cases personally and it all worked out well for both of them in the end after an initial period of stress for both of them.

    But if a wife is not already employed and does not wish to take up a job, and instead wants motherhood, then it is not fair on the part of her husband to compel her to support him while he gives up his job to pursue his educational and career ambitions. The husband must consider other options like studying after office hours, or doing on line / correspondence courses, changing jobs, looking for opportunities for self employment, or a small business and the wife must encourage and support him and bear with him while he struggles to improve his career prospects. But if the lady accedes to her husbands demand, I can well imagine how taxing it will be for this lady to work and earn enough not only to support herself in UK, but also send money to her husband while he lives and studies in USA. Is this lady qualified to do so? Have they worked out the costs? is this even practical? She has not mentioned that.

    If nothing else works, since both are the only children of their parents who are well off, they should not rule out coming back to India and trying for opportunities right here in India. There are plenty of precedents. Many desis have come back to India and are doing well after the recent economic turnaround in India. If they opt for this they will be will be able to count on parental support from both sides.. My opinion is that this is the best option, instead of wanting to settle in a country where
    a) He is stagnating in his job
    b) Runs the risk of possibly losing his job in future
    c) His wife does not earn a living but depends on his income.
    d) the country has twice indicated that it does not want to confer citizenship on him
    e) is likely to reject his quest for citizenship him a third time too.

    In any case this husband should have discussed his plans and expectations from his wife before marrying so that she could decide whether or not to marry him under these conditions. The boys family had rejected a software girl before this marriage. In all fairness, this lady should have had the chance to say no to this alliance if she knew what she was getting into.

    Now it is too late. But I support the husband’s stand on not having a child now. It makes no sense to bring forth a baby under the present circumstances. Just as he should not force her into a job to support him, she should not pressurize him for a baby till he is mentally ready for it. If they come back to India, he will probably do better and she can have her baby too and I am sure the four grandparents of the baby will be delighted too. The baby will be a pampered baby. I should know, for I am a recent grandparent!

    Regards
    GV

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    • GV, if the wife is not ready to support the husband in his dreams, then there is no obligation on the husband to support her dreams of motherhood either. Everything is a joint decision and must remain so. He is not obliged to do MBA by correspondence or anything else, while the wife just sits at home. It’s simply not fair.

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      • Fem,
        Of course, you are right and I too said the same thing regarding the issue about having the baby. She should not insist if he is unwilling.

        I never said anything against his desire for an MBA.
        What is not okay is his giving up his job to do an MBA at this stage and expecting his wife to cough up enough for it.
        He ought to have done it before his marriage or used his savings (and, by mutual agreement her savings), if that was enough. Or else he should wait till his savings can finance his educational plans. His wife has clearly stated that even if she goes to work now, she will not be able to earn enough to pay for his MBA education in USA, his living expenses in USA, her living expenses in UK and also the emi’s on their apartment in UK.

        I also feel, based on additional information supplied by the LW, a man like him is not going to be better off simply by getting an MBA degree. He runs the risk of over qualification and even jobs that he would have considered before his MBA and which might have paid him better than what he earned now, will become unworthy of consideration due to the newly acquired MBA degree.

        Before the marriage, the letter writer clearly told her husband she wanted to be a mother early on as she was getting on in age.
        But the husband never told her about his plans for an MBA to be financed by his wife after he gives up his job.
        The wife has also expressed her willingness to work but the husband is not being reasonable if he expects her to earn enough for his MBA venture.

        I am now increasingly convinced that it is best if this couple returns to India and the husband joins the family business. To my mind, he does not seem capable of making it out on his own abroad and being as successful as his more meritorious friends.

        I find two of his obsessions unreasonable.
        1) An MBA degree
        2) Living in London, and nowhere else.

        Plenty of people have succeeded in life even without an MBA degree.
        An MBA degree will not make up for other qualities needed to be successful.
        Deserving and qualifying to live in London should precede desiring to live in London and the British Government will decide if he deserves to be a citizen or not.

        Regards
        GV

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        • You said it GV, there are unfeasible aspirations involved here and unworkable numbers. I have a fair idea of the costs involved here and it is impossible for her, as a fresher in the UK job market, to get enough salary to pay for herself and the emi and then send him money. Besides, his fees and living costs will be many many times her total salary. His dreams sound beyond unrealistic even if she was willing to do it. So do hers, considering he doesn’t even want kids yet.

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        • I agree. Personally I begin to think this is a completely incompatible relationship. It’s as if they just jumped into the ocean without knowing how to swim and are now floundering. Or perhaps the guy was pushed into the ocean by his mother. Bottom line: it’s a mess and both are involved.

          I laughed at this: “Deserving and qualifying to live in London should precede desiring to live in London and the British Government will decide if he deserves to be a citizen or not.”😀 So true! It’s not as if he has any kind of authority over that.

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        • “Plenty of people have succeeded in life even without an MBA degree.
          An MBA degree will not make up for other qualities needed to be successful.”

          This is very very true.

          I know someone who has an MBA degree, who doesn’t even work in the field.

          I know several people who don’t have one, who are incredibly successful.

          It all depends on how you define success.

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      • Exactly! I agree with Fem too!

        The way LW puts the word dream in quotes sounds very demeaning. As someone pointed out above, she doesn’t seem to respect her husband. Yet, she expects her husband to respect her wishes. Isn’t that unfair?

        The LW’s expectations from her husband (that he not pursue an MBA, continue as the sole breadwinner and father her children asap) seemed to me to be an example of how patriarchy is also unfair on men. She told her would-be-husband that all her ‘male’ cousins are IIT/IIM grads. Why only male cousins? Seems to indicate that she believes in the stereotype that the male should be the bread-winner, and hence needs to have impressive career credentials. She very easily admits that she is not a career-oriented girl.

        I agree that the husband should have told her of his MBA plans before marriage. But it’s also possible that he was not sure then if he would be going for it or not. A job with a regular income does make you laid-back and you keep postponing your higher-study plans to maybe next year and so on. It’s happened to me and my college friends. Then, one day, you meet an old friend who went to an IIM straight out of college and you see how tremendously well he has done for himself and how higher up the corporate ladder he is from you (despite you both being age-mates), and suddenly you are jolted out of your complacence. It’s possible. All that I am saying is, that one must not assume that he didn’t tell her of his MBA plans because of a mala fide intention.

        During my one-year MBA, I came across many batchmates who were married (some even had kids; even more wonderful: some of these married-with-kids students were women). Some’s spouses lived with them on campus (took up local jobs for the year); others had long-distance marriages for that one year. I felt just “wow” to see such wonderfully supportive spouses and families in the Indian society. (At that time, I didn’t know that I myself would be blessed with one; my husband and I are in a long-distance marriage for the past one year….because of my job…..and I feel so proud of him for giving as much respect for and importance to my career aspirations as to his own). A rock-solid marriage is made when both partners respect each other, are each other’s best friends and enablers, let each other breathe and pursue their own dreams.

        The LW could talk with her husband that she is not comfortable with the long-distance idea and that she would like to move to the USA with him but she would be an incredibly stifling spouse if she throws a tantrum to stop him from doing an MBA and to continue in a job he doesn’t derive satisfaction from and to be a father.

        She is feeling resentment against her spouse now because he is making her do something she doesn’t want to do. Is she okay with filling her spouse with the same resentment against her (and his would be life-long; he would forever rue that he couldn’t do better in his life because his wife chained him)?

        It’s okay to divorce him if she doesn’t want to be the breadwinner while he studies. It’s not okay to bar him from pursuing his dream..

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  8. Hi
    I’ve asked him to take me to USA & I could probably also join some course in the same University for higher studies , but although they’re very rich, they’re unwilling to foot the bills for me & my husband ‘s entire savings will go towards paying for his MBA so he can’t pay the bills. My parents don’t want to take out all that money, they feel it will be a significant chunk off their savings for their old age. I used to work before marriage but I don’t have anywhere near enough to go to USA for further studies.
    I don’t do the comparing – he does. The problem is that his “best friend” in London is an IIT/ IIM A consultant with McKinsey who’s recently become a partner in McKinsey. Husband was a very good student in school & this man was his classmate. Both of them were equally good students then but his academic & professional career fumbled as this guy zoomed ahead. Now in London, he spends all his weekends with this guy’s IIT/ IIM circle, who’re doing much better than him. He feels very keen to somehow”catch up”. He’s also living in an apartment similar to their homes thanks to his dad, even his boss lives in a much,much shabbier place. He also wants a similar lifestyle to them in every way, which is not being possible with his salary.
    He doesn’t have any business ideas inspite of coming from a business family & he hopes an MBA now will somehow give him the same salary as the only difference between them & him is an MBA.
    He can’t get a better paying job as his career has not gone very well till now, and he was quite a job hopper before. His dad had big contacts in London and had got him a good job in a Company where the then Chairman was known to them, he quit it because of the long hours in a year.
    Now he says most jobs at his level are “reserved” for citizens or Permanent Residents, and people like him find it difficult to get a higher pay.
    One of his colleagues has moved to the Middle East where they get paid twice what they’re paying in London and I’ve also suggested that perhaps we could find something there,he says he wants to live only in London.

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    • Well, the truth is both of you need to grow up. To me it seems like 2 immature people got married because their parents determined it looks fine.

      Looking at the present situation

      – Stop running to your parents for everything. For money. For issues. For fights. You are 2 adults in a marriage. You both have to decide if you can afford certain things as a couple. Can you both afford a MBA? Can you afford not to work? Can you afford kids? Does one of the partner even want kids at the current stage? Can you afford london? Evaluate your income & expenses & decide.

      He wants an MBA? Fine – PLan, save money, downsize your flat & life style & do it. The problem is both of you always have mama & papa to run to should you need money. Now, that they cannot give you money, things don’t look nice.

      Did you communicate that you want kids after this point in marriage? Before you are 30? If his dumping the MBA thing on you is not fair, then you dumping desire for kids now is not fair either.

      Everything in this email seems to be the guy’s fault & I don’t like dumping everything on 1 person of either . You are also in a marriage & you also have a role to play.

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    • I don’t understand why parents should foot the bill for anything for their adult children even if they are stinking rich. Your husband is not wrong per se in wanting to do an MBA. Yes, he is insecure and may not have done as well in his career but neither of this is a sin.

      And it is not wrong either for you to be not happy with this decision to do an MBA especially when it will affect your life as a couple in a major way.

      If you both cannot come to a consensus about your future, then maybe the best option would be to move on in your separate ways. Just, please, dont do things like making your mom call his mom. You both are adults. Sort it out between yourselves like adults.

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    • Sorry to say, after reading this post as well as other replies, I feel this guy is behaving like a spoilt brat. Wanting to study and improve one’s qualifications and professional prospects is not a bad thing in itself. Nor is it unreasonable for the wife to support the husband while he pursues his dreams.

      However,in this case it seems to be a case of wanting to keep up with the Jones’s while not wanting to put in any effort towards that goal himself. He is happy to have his father pay, his wife pay, he obviously did not seem to have had any plan of going to the US before marriage since he turned down a woman who wanted to go there for a year. Given the fact that at that point of time her being in the US would amount to a year of long distance relationship, it appears that this new decision of that same long distance relationship where he is the one who goes off to the US has been a new addition – an impulsive decision. This obstinate insistence on living only in London also seems to be infantile.

      LW, you can very well put your foot down and tell him you married him because he clearly said he did not want a long distance relationship. If he did not want kids, he should have told you so before marriage – a more reasonable expectation than that you should have asked him if he wanted to do his MBA.

      Ask him to pursue his dreams in his free time by doing a correspondence course or whatever. It is the qualification which is important. It does not matter where he gets it from.

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    • Oh God! Now you are talking.
      This is how the picture emerges to my mind based on information supplied by you.

      You want to go to USA with him and continue your studies?
      If you need to find a job to finance his MBA studies, how can you study?
      If you don’t work, and, instead, choose to study in USA, have you thought about the additional costs?
      Are you sure you will get admission to a course of your choice and aptitude in the same city in USA where he does his MBA? Besides if you also study at USA, where will the income come to support
      both of you? This is even more difficult than you working to support his MBA studies. You can also kiss good bye to your plans to have a baby before you are thirty.

      He wants a high paying job but you say he has been quite a job hopper.
      His Dad has big contacts in London and his recent job was due to a favour from some Chairman in London but he let down that Chairman who did him a favour and quit that job because he did not want long hours of work. Why should any high paying job want him?

      He wants an MBA because he believes that is the only deficiency that keeps him from becoming as successful as his friends. From what you have written lack of an MBA is not his only deficiency.
      I see an attitude problem.

      He comes from a business family but doesn’t have any business ideas?
      His best friend is an IIT/IIM graduate and works in a high pressure job as consultant but he is neither an IIT/IIM man nor willing to work as a consultant but still wants the same pay as his better qualified and harder working friend?

      His parents are unwilling to foot the bills for your combined education in USA?
      Your parents are also unwilling to jeopardize their savings which they need for their old age?
      Perfectly right and logical on their part, if you ask me. Why should they indulge you now? They have done their duty to you and now both of you are at an age where you should not even have such an expectation from the previous generation. Beyond hoping that they bequeath their wealth and assets to you both after their lifetimes, you should not expect anything else.

      His friends have moved to the Middle east and are making twice the money but he does not want to consider it? You say he wants to live only in London? In spite of London not wanting him and rejecting his citizenship application twice already?

      Sorry! I have no advice to give except to say that if this man was my son, I would simply advise him to make it on his own abroad or else come back to India and help him settle down here. I would be willing to support him financially in any educational venture or a business venture to the best of my ability and affordability but would be loath to risk my old age financial security by indulging him any further.

      I hope and pray you sort out this matter amicably.
      Regards
      GV

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      • The husband is going to pay for this MBA with his savings- I think that is fair. He wants the wife to work for two years to pay apartment EMI’s and anyway cannot afford kids at this stage.
        The only problems I have with the husband’s behaviour is the immaturity of his thinking and the inferiority complex that seems to be driving him. The insistence on London is plain baffling- or perhaps because he knows she will not find a job in USA?
        The LW has only two options- accept what he’s asking/demanding of her, or try and convince him to follow ‘her way’** and failing that, separate.

        **(I take this to mean-The LW doesn’t want husband to spend his savings on an MBA. She doesn’t want to work either. It seems she wants him to continue working at his current job and pay off the EMI’s.)

        Well, in that case she cannot insist on having a baby- as her husband feels his current circumstances do not allow him to afford a child.

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        • I only take exception with letting him off the hook for asking her to pay the EMIs. She didn’t buy the place, her name is not on the deed, so the EMIs are not her responsibility. They can rent it out or sell it if they can’t afford the EMIs (they’ll make quite a profit). It’s the same thing as her not having the privilege to force baby on him. A property is quite a responsibility for a fresh entrant to the UK job market with no current job (as a baby would be for a guy who can’t afford it).

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    • It seems to me as though your husband has an incredible inferiority complex at the expense of everything else. Also, I’m sorry, but who on Earth compares themselves to their school friends anyway? That’s ridiculous. My career is going to go a different way from all my friends’. The difference is whether or not I am happy. If I’m ecstatic about what I wind up doing in the future, why on earth do I need to care what my friends are doing? It means diddly-squat to me, and it shouldn’t mean anything to your husband. Not to mention, marks in school mean absolutely zero in real life. Just because you’re successful at regurgitating information in an exam setting doesn’t mean you’re cut out for real life work or business. This blind insistence on being like his friends is quite childish.

      And also, I’m sorry, but you can’t exactly ask your parents to foot the bill. It doesn’t matter how rich they are. At some point, the umbilical cord has to be chopped off. It’s time that happened now.

      I would ask your husband to truly evaluate why he wants to do an MBA. Does he want it because it is something that will actually make him happy, that has been his dream? Or does he want it because it feels like it’ll put him on equal footing with his friends? Because let me tell you something. If it’s the latter, then getting that MBA isn’t going to do anything for him. There is a bigger problem at work here that has nothing to do with his qualifications or his degree, but is entirely about the fact that he’s constantly measuring himself with someone else’s standards.

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    • Getting jealous and envying others’ success is one thing and getting inspired and wanting to improve on oneself is another thing.Why do you feel your husband is wanting to do MBA just for the status? Even if it is true, it is his aspiration. Is it not similar to you wanting to have a child? Understand and respect his aspirations and support him.Together you both need to support one another’s wishes, forego certain things at certain times. Even if you would raise a baby at this point, it is less likely that you and your family will be happy. If you carry forward with this cribby attitude, you’ll just have a heavy heart.Let go of your disappointments, and start on a fresh page.Understand each others’ beliefs and aspirations.Nothing like supporting one another and being their for one another in times of trouble or hard times.

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  9. Sorry, but you got married because you want children. And looks like your husband got married because he needs money. Are these really the right reasons to get and stay married?

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        • But there is a difference. The sexy young thing knows she is a gold digger, but Indian girls go with the flow and do what is expected of them due to years and years of conditioning. Also hypergamy is the tradition for Indian women. Parents would not accept otherwise for their daughter, so that they (the parents) are not laughed and mocked at.

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      • Right?!
        At first, people coax the couple into marriage and later pressurize them to have children.Of course the couple will get frustrated with too many things on their plate and at the next stage vent it out on children! This cycle indeed does happen for people who do not question themselves as to why they should marry or even before agreeing on whom to marry and for what reasons to marry.

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        • In India marriage is default. Marrying by a certain age is mandatory. Also producing a kid by a certain time period compulsory. The chachas, mamas, mausis and neighbors will start asking questions and putting pressure on the parents. The parents in turn will transfer the pressure on the girl/boy/couple. That’s how things work.

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  10. I understand your feeling of betrayal. You were not told of things in advance and THAT is a very bad precedent in a marriage, especially an arranged marriage where you don’t even have time to get to know each other well. So the minimum expectation you go in with is that things be made clear BEFORE the marriage.
    The husband wants an MBA and wants you to earn during that time. you want to do business and start a family, both of which he vetoes. A clear case of clashing interests. No one can say who should bow out to the other’s wish. It is up to both of you to talk it over decide whose wish takes the precedence. He is not wrong in wanting an MBA, but he cannot *expect* you to give up your dreams and earn while he studies. That should be a mutual decision.

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  11. So you don’t want to work but you have a problem when he doesn’t want to work either. Complete double standards. He has the right to study or do whatever he wants at any time in his life. It’s his RIGHT. Just as you are refusing to take the responsibility for the couple, so is he. Except for the hiding and lies, I don’t see what he is doing wrong here. If it’s a terrible crime not to share earning duties with your spouse, you are guilty of it too.

    Sit down and have a talk with him on how exactly you can sort out this situation without either of you giving up your dreams. If it is a question of finances, sort it out and negotiate on a future repayment plan. Maybe he can take a student loan to finance his MBA and also work part time so that you can both pool your income to pay your bills. If you don’t want to help the spouse you married, you can simply choose to leave.

    If you are considering the divorce path, do ensure that next time you marry a man, you know him well. Marriage is not a game as so many of you people seem to think. It’s a lifetime commitment and a serious relationship that provides legal protection. Jumping into it like small babies jumping at the sight of a toy without thinking of the consequences is just stupid.

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      • Fair depends on the circumstances here. If the wife thinks that thrusting a baby and a non-earning spouse on the husband is fair, then he can certainly be excused for wanting to go to USA for further studies. Both partners seem equally selfish and unfit to be in a relationship and need to discuss things and sort it out. If they can’t reach an agreement, they need to quit this farce of a ‘marriage’.

        I have no opinion on withholding of information in arranged marriages. If someone chooses to go in for such a marriage, they are basically agreeing to walk blindfolded into a relationship and that can have serious consequences. Arranged marriages in our country have a long history of lying and withholding information merely so that the wedding can go forward. If anyone chooses to be part of this institution, they need to deal with the consequences. On a more personal level, it is stupid to withhold information in any relationship.

        What do you think of the circumstances of this letter and what would your advice be?

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        • @Fem,

          I dont agree with this. Each have their own wishes and reasons to get married. What is wrong in wanting a child? She has clearly mentioned her wishes before marrying. you make it sound like it is abnormal for a girl to want a baby after her wedding, isnt that why she has got married in the first place? Given her age, asking her to sacrifice having a baby is completely unfair. If the guy had plans to do MBA he need not have got married not.

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        • There is nothing wrong in having a baby. AT ALL. Thrusting a baby at an unwilling partner is wrong. Also, expecting partner to give up his dreams so you can have a baby is very wrong. Not working and being independent in this scenario when you can’t depend upon anyone and even thinking of bringing a baby into this scenario is not good.

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        • @Fem,
          You dont understand my point. The woman has got married BECAUSE SHE WANTED A BABY. He knows it even before wedding. IF he didnt want a baby, why didnt he inform it before hand? Before he got married should he not have told her that? That is what is unfair here. I dont think she would have married him in the first place if she was informed that he is not interested in having a baby right now and would want to do an MBA and then only think about it.

          It is a lie on his part to keep her from the truth. You are talking about some other issue. I am trying to point u to the fact that he has got her into this relationship knowing what she wanted, but now forcing her to do something else to satisfy his dream. He should have married someone who wants the same things as he does.

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      • But IHM,they both had their own reasons to get married. The foundation of the marriage was based on this & it seems that these expectations & reasons were not discussed prior to marriage.
        They need to communicate & come up with a solution like so many above have suggested.

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    • I like fem’s tough love here, some good questions about people and their motivations going into such arranged marriages. As long as everyone stays within their expected prescribed roles, everything is good, moment someone wants to veer off path this is an example of what happens. I guess such tough but honest questions are never raised or discussed in arranged marriages because everything else in the match looks so good (e.g rich parents, only son, working abroad, posh London apartment in this case) and they don’t want to miss out on the deal and simply hope everything will magically work out after marriage. This is pure gamble/speculation in my opinion.

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      • Seconded. It seems like all he wanted a working partner . It seems like all she wanted was to be a mother. Both the expectations are very valid, so why were they not communicated well?
        If the communication had been better, he’d have realised that this woman absolutely resents being asked to earn a paycheck. And she’d have realised this guy doesn’t enough just yet to afford a baby!

        Unrelated-I don’t like the condescending attitude she takes towards people who want to study/make career changes a little later in life. It reeks of entitlement. Or the assumption that marriage means the woman can be self-righteous in avoiding fiscal responsibilities- even if it is only short-term.

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    • Fem, it looks like she wants to start her own business and she told him about it before the wedding, and he was okay with that? That’s not “sitting at home”.

      There is only one person here who has lied and withheld information, and that person is to blame for this mess.

      You and I may not agree with this LW’s priorities but that is not for us to judge. She has not done anything wrong – HE HAS.

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        • The husband (and his family) have been dishonest, and no matter what the woman’s choices (and whether or not we personally approve of them) she has the right to those choices, and she has been honest about them. Even if she had never mentioned motherhood, in an arranged marriage not mentioning it would not be dishonesty. In fact, if one of the partners does not want kids, they would be expected to mention this. The husband expecting the wife to stay alone, work, postpone motherhood, and pay the EMIs for a house (probably in his name), while he goes alone to pursue a dream – why didn’t he mention all this earlier? I think she has very valid reasons for contemplating divorce.

          Why did this man get married? He was not in love and he did not plan to start living with a wife, or start a family until after his MBA in the US. And what made him withhold information and lie about his expectations from this marriage?

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        • Do you think that not mentioning dowry or the expectation to live with the in-laws is acceptable before marriage? Why do you think people get married in arranged marriages?

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    • I’d like to add.If you do divorce him, please don’t take alimony from him. Because you don’t deserve it.You will be penalizing him.You haven’t done anything supportive or made any efforts to be an equal partner according to what I infer from the description. I wish we heard your husband’s version too…

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      • Pardon me if I’ve been judgmental.Because I’ve been someone who supports freedom. So I don’t see why your husband doing MBA for few years should be a problem.It is not unfair to me that he is seeking moral and financial support from his spouse. Nevertheless, you should talk to each other about your insecurities, priorities and problems and mutually find a solution.

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  12. It’s very difficult to advice anything when you see the man who didn’t want to get married at all, but because he was 31 he had to. I think she can start applying for a job in London. It wouldn’t do any harm. She can start business as well, but only if she knows what she wants. Starting the business just for the sake of saying ‘I own some little business in London’ sponsored by her parents or in-laws is a way to nowhere. Also she should start doing something she didn’t care to do before marriage, I mean discuss the situation with her husband. He clearly has his own future perspectives right now, but this man doesn’t seem to have any clear plans how to fulfill them. It’s time for her to explain him that MBA be achieved in UK too. You should both compromise, you agree him to study further, but he studies in your current country of residence. Of course if he doesn’t agree, it will once again mean that he didn’t want to get married and MBA is an excuse to distance himself from his new wife. And yes she should read Nitya comment many time, she spoke the wisdom.

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  13. Hi all,
    Yes I’d discussed my children plans with him before marriage, I had said that I wanted children immediately or as soon as they happen naturally, he had said lets “enjoy” for one year after that we can start trying for kids.
    That was another lie. I’d also asked him about the software engineer girl, he had said he can’t deal with a one year long distance relationship after marriage, she could & should try to find another job in London.
    Looking back, I find the attitude quite unpleasant, they actually wanted a girl to have a career, but it shouldn’t be to support her own ow dreams & aspirations and build a mutual life, a girl’s career for them is entirely to support their son’s “dream” of studying and proving himself while she keeps a place for him in London to come back & job hunt.
    Yes I don’t have much respect for my husband, as someone mentioned his friends make money & have got citizenship not only because of their qualifications but also because they slog. I know his McKinsey friend works tirelessly & travels weekly. He wants a job which will allow him to come home by 7.30 ish, and I don’t blame him for that, but if you don’t work hard like other people, don’t expect the same financial rewards.

    I too think that it’d be difficult for him to land a top paying job after his MBA, given that he has no inkling what he wants to do after MBA, only that it should be a London based job, that pays as well as his friends, with a good work life balance. I personally think all this might not be easily achievable. His GMAT score isn’t high either, around 680 ish.

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    • You kerp saying ‘we’ and ‘they’ as if you and your parents were a team against him and his parents. You are not talking about you and your husband as a team. You don’t seem to be able respect your husband at all. The facts in this email, you should be telling him, not us random strangers. If you think his MBA would not be a good decision for him or your family, you should convince him of that objectively. Not tell us what his GMAT score is, we don’t want to know. That’s luke bitching about him. If he is immature, you are not less so. I don’t know why you married him, but if you divorce, choose the next one for yourself.

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    • I see it now.I think you are more hurt because you are losing trust on him and any new information that you get, you see it in the light of doubt or suspect it. Like you mentioned, the reason for them looking for a career girl. In an arranged marriage, people indeed do check many requirements like these for their own reasons. Nothing can be said about that.It does sound silly to me. Like height, complexion, and a lot more! If you don’t feel any love for your husband or are unhappy in this marriage, walk out of it.

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  14. Hello LW,
    My sense of reading your letter is that your husband and you are not a team. Both of you are not communicating, and strangely, expect your parents to communicate what you are feeling. Obviously, each parent will support their respective child’s point of view. This may not be the healthiest and objective way of resolving or thinking through the issues. The bottom line for you I think is to answer if you really are in a partnership and/or interested in making it work as a partnership. Do you have the will and desire to make it work? BTW I think if the *honest* answer to this question is No; leave now. There is no point in fighting it out just because. Other comments:
    I want to first address the age issue because it seems to matter to you a lot. If you live your life through these types of cut-offs you inhibit yourself from enjoying life to its fullest. It doesn’t matter what profession you are, you are never too old to study or develop a serious new interest. And I believe that it is wrong to impose these age cut-offs on your spouse; you inhibit their ability to grow because of your fears. Yes, for child-bearing age matters. 30 however, is no magic number of biological safety. If you are going to be stressed to have a baby, conception will be a problem; if your husband doesn’t want a kid, pregnancy will be stressful; your motivation of bringing a child into this world in the current state of affairs, will be selfish.
    Second, both of you have big expectations of each other. If you had not mentioned before marriage that you wished to get pregnant immediately and start a family, you can’t blame your husband for over-looking this in terms of his long-term strategy. Having a baby soon may be a cultural expectation, but you cannot assume that it is as much a priority for him as for you.
    Third, I think there is a compromise solution possible between his desire to study and the financial implications, given that the general financial situation of the families are good. It will require a open and frank discussion on what individual aspirations are. If you are unwilling to support his dreams, you cannot expect him to return the favour.
    Fourth, your husband seems to suffer from poor self-esteem. If you want to help him, try to make him realize that the only competition in life, is with yourself. May be he needs to he hanging out with a different set of friends. May be one of his friends is not a shallow, greedy man and can help him see that living a life of comparison will never be fulfilling? I don’t think it’s wrong that he wants to do an MBA now, and didn’t tell you about it. I think his motivation is wrong. And if this type of attitude continues he will continue to chase dreams that are not his own, expecting your support. Look into yourself, if your husband’s motivation for an MBA was to help him become a better professional (rather than earn more than his friends) do you think you will support him?
    Fifth, it’s not encouraging that you did not know how strongly he felt about becoming a UK citizen. This type of obsession can take on epic proportions. You have to talk through his feeling on this. And who knows, you might discover why he’s got these goals that all are relative to what other people have achieved?

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  15. Fem
    I do want to work. I understand in this day and age, both couples do share the financial burden. The problem is that my education & past employment hasn’t equipped me to earn a lot, this was something I’d mentioned to them. They’d said that’s no problem, women in their family don’t work at all. Maybe that’s archaic, but that’s what they’d said.

    Even if I work my income will at most be a small additional income, it can no way bring us anywhere close to his “friends” whose equal he wants to “prove” himself by getting the same salary & British citizenship.

    I honestly had no idea before marriage about his obsession with London, rejected British citizenship bids, or his burning goal to prove himself the equal of his more successful friends. He’d always said that if things didn’t work out in UK he’d move back & find a job or join the family business.

    Also he claims he’s very self sufficient, he doesn’t take anything from his dad, but he’s taken the entire down payment of the apartment from his dad.

    Now he wants a wife to get a job, remain alone in London & pay the emi of the apartment his parents bought for him. That way, someone can keep paying the emi, and also he can come back to London and job hunt after his MBA.

    I personally feel (and I may be wrong)like this is just a case of asking for EMI dowry.

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    • One more piece of advice: if you plan to take up on the suggestions given on this forum, i.e., pool your resources to help pay for the EMI, ensure that your name is added to the flat legally. All said and done, until you actually start working, you will have no idea how much you can earn or what you can do with your life. Concentrating on a baby at this point is futile because you are not even secure in your marriage or life yet. Please learn to support yourself, both individually and as a team with your husband, before you bring a third person into the equation.

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        • @desidaaru12 – True that it’s a risk but she can choose whether or not she will hold that property.If she finds it hard to pay the EMI, she’ll have ways to get rid of it.If she will be able to pay it all, then, certainly she’ll have it as a benefit for her efforts that she put in paying it up.🙂

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    • Okay, after reading all your replies, this is what I feel – it was a foolish decision to just blindly believe whatever they guy or guy’s family said because people often lie in arranged marriage system.

      Him hiding facts was wrong.

      Anybody who really cares for their spouse, would not really be into moving away from their partner soon after marriage. I understand there are circumstances, where people do that but in your case, it looks like you guys got married because you had to. Both of you are not into each other or marriage.

      Again stop relying on your parents.
      Discuss with him. Why does he feel that way?
      Explain your opinion & discuss your finances & goals. Is it feasible for an MBA with your current state?
      If he feels so strongly about going to US, why not sell your flat in London & you can go to India, if it is cheaper for both of you. Do you guys have money for the MBA in the first place? What if he does not get a job in London? What will he do?

      To me, it looks like he was not into marriage. He was kind of pressured to marry & now, he remains married out of no choice. So, he is looking to escape or creating situations to make you go away or him leaving.

      I keep getting a sense of 2 children who entered marriage.

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  16. LW, did you make it clear before marriage that you are expecting to have children before 30? Did you share your fears about hysterectomy with him before agreeing for the arranged marriage? Did the guy know that you were marrying with no intentions of working after? Did you tell him your sole intention behind marrying him was to be a home maker and raise kids? When you put forth these ideas to him before marriage, what did he say?Did he agree? Did he support your views?

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  17. As I said, even if I work it can only be a supplementary income – I don’t have the qualification or experience required to raise the family to the same level as his more successful friends, unless I magically start some business which does stupendously well.
    Also, if I take up any job now, my husband who’s made it clear that he wants me to work to 1) pay the EMI 2) help him come back to London & job hunt after his MBA
    will be extremely angry if I quit my job and want to move back to India to live & work there if he goes off to USA.
    I know their attitude. He says he’s never got what he wanted in life, he’s had many “failures”.
    As many people rightly mentioned, there’s a high chance he might not land the job of his dreams in London after MBA, especially with the salary he expects and as he doesn’t want to slog. Then if he had a wife working in London, he’d say he’d have been able to come to London and look for & find his “dream job” there. Knowing his attitude, he’d blame m entirely for this “failure”.

    I like London, but see no reason to remain there without a husband, especially as these expectations weren’t mentioned to me before marriage. If he’s off to USA, I would rather live & work close to my family.

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  18. Since the LW did inform the husband of her desire to have a child quickly, made her job prospects clear (and it’s not always easy to get a great job in a new country right away) and since he agreed to that and gave her reason to believe that what he wanted was someone who was not too career-oriented and who would live in the same city as him, then I think it’s fair to be shocked that he not only wants the opposite of these things, he wants her to fund him doing the opposite of what they agreed on.

    I disagree with some of the LW’s assessments of her husband and judgements on the age at which people should study. The more I read it seems to me like she got married with the expectation of having a child and dabbling in something small on the side maybe (which is culturally more expected even when unsaid) while he got married with the idea that he could have a placeholder in the UK while he fulfilled his educational dreams. It’s possible he didn’t ever want to be married at all.

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  19. I agree there’s been a lot of expectations on my part too, some of which might not have been fair but I’d laid them all out on the table.
    Like wanting children soon, or my dislike of long distance relationships unless they’re absolutely necessary, my current & future probable earning potential etc.

    He hadn’t and his family hadn’t.

    He didn’t reject the software engineer girl because he’s just thought of the MBA, he was giving his GMAT around this time. He wanted to marry someone who would want to work in London itself, so that he can come back & job hunt, she can pay the EMI while he job hunts etc.

    But I was never told of these expectations.

    In such a situation I have little respect for him.

    He wants the same salary as his more successful friends but not the same drudgery.

    He wants to stay in a first world country with a similar salary compared to what his more successful friends are making but wants a great work/life balance as well. He won’t work as hard as them(no life) nor go to the Middle East(again no life).

    In this case, he should have married a very well qualified and high earning girl from the UK itself who was ideally a citizen herself and explained all his MBA plans beforehand,rather than misleading us.

    He is the one who keeps calling up his mom, he “whines” to her that he never wanted to get married in the first place so why did she force him into all this? He’d only agree to a wife who’s willing to “support” him.

    Like

    • Yes, he should have married a super earning UK girl and he probably tried, but no such girl probably agreed to marry him. So many ulterior motives in a marriage of arrangement, for me it’s a surprise when it does end well.

      Like

    • at last you got it right…
      He wanted to marry someone who would want to work in London itself, so that he can come back & job hunt, she can pay the EMI while he job hunts etc.

      now its your decision to agree for this or not.

      Like

  20. @Fem

    I’m an Office Assistant btw, a Secretary, a PA. How easy is it for someone like me to
    1) quickly land a high paying job in a foreign country
    2) pay the EMI for quite a big apartment and maintain a decent standard of living for myself?

    He had also told his parents that he wanted a ” very beautiful” wife as he comes from such a high status family, I don’t want to sound vain but I am quite attractive. He also wanted someone who was traditional and homely and I ticked their checklist about these qualities.

    However i’ve never been very bright academically nor has my career taken off brilliantly. I made it all clear to them and I thought its obvious anyway.

    I’ve met some very bright girls in UK who earn a lot, my husband & his parents should’ve ideally searched for such a girl.

    His best friend, that Mc Kinsey guy’s wife doesn’t work, she’s studying something and her husband funds her education, they had a love marriage and dated for 5 years before marriage, he also sends 1000 GBP (this becomes a big sum in INR) to his in laws every month as her father passed away early and she has three younger sisters and a mom who needs the money.All this was agreed before marriage.

    He can afford such a wife, my husband can’t afford a Secretary wife and we wouldn’t have agreed to the match anyway had I known all these plans.

    This was an arranged marriage and one of the biggest foundation of future love, respect & trust is truthful disclosure of all facts before marriage, which was trust lacking in our case.

    Like

    • See? You state the truth – It is obvious that your husband was not at all interested in this marriage. He married because of blackmail from his mom. Of course, he is going to go whining to his mom for everything.

      He does not care for the marriage or you. Anyway, since he is married to you, he is making use of the situation. At least if he goes to US – he get distance as well as someone paying for the flat.

      Like

      • “At least if he goes to US – he gets distance as well as someone paying for the flat.” You hit the nail on the head. He wants a sucker, but he doesn’t want her near him. He wants her away, but wants her to keep striving to earn enough to pay the EMI and fund his education. Its a win win for him. What is there for her in this relationship?

        Like

    • Why are you still married to him when it is clear he never wanted the marriage? Just leave already. I am sorry, but I really have very less sympathy for women who marry with their eyes blindfolded and then are horrified at the realities of the situation and start blaming everyone left, right and centre. Arranged marriages are primarily a trade bargain. Looks like you made a loss. Cut your losses and move on, and for heaven’s sake, just get to know the guy before you tie the knot next time.

      Like

      • I don’t think she married blindfolded. True, in an arranged marriage there is a possibility of any party going back on their word, It seems that the LW aired out what she wanted very clearly, and felt as though she fit the bill for what her husband wanted. She did not expect him to lie. She did not expect him to not be fully honest. You run this risk even in a marriage that isn’t arranged. How do we know that who we are marrying is fully honest with us, even if we’ve known them for years? We don’t. It’s always a risk.

        I agree that you can’t marry someone as a trade bargain, but she’s completely right to blame her husband in this. He was the one who lied to her. Blindfolded or not, he was wrong to do that. The blame for the situation falls on him quite a lot. If he had learned an ounce of honesty, with both himself and with others, nobody would be in this situation and LW would probably be in a much more content marriage where everything works out.

        Like

      • @Fem,

        To be honest, many love marriages are also entered into with blind folds on. The fact is that if you have not lived with a person and known their family, you cannot predict what married life would be like. Even if you have lived together and known each other’s families, people’s priorities can change.

        I think it’s a bit unfair to say that if someone entered into an arranged marriage, they ‘deserve’ all that follow.. I wonder where the line is between holding people accountable and victim blaming. The same issues could have and do happen in love marriages too. People don’t always know each other inside out anyway or stay the same for the rest of their lives.

        Like

        • I didn’t say she deserved it. She doesn’t. No one does. But it’s a risk she took and it hasn’t paid off. And you are right that people may not know each other even in love marriages. That is however, besides the point. Why the hurry to marry someone before getting to know them?

          She says she has told him of the need for children but what was his reaction? Did he agree? Did she pay attention to his words or actions? The way she is quoting his GMAT score leaves a bad taste in the mouth. Would you do that to someone close to you if they got less than desirable results? All the mummy daddy stuff is pretty unbelievable as well. Why not sort it all out like adults?

          I also feel that she is too entitled and wants to relax and enjoy life while husband gives up his dreams and slogs for her and baby. She keeps mentioning that he must settle down into his job at his age. Who made that rule? It’s not that I hold the husband faultless, but she herself is also responsible for the situation and needs to participate in solving it.

          Like

        • @ Fem,

          ‘Why the hurry to marry someone before getting to know them?’

          It’s a fallacy to think that you can completely know someone or that spending a long time getting to know them would mean no surprises after marriage. People and relationships can be unpredictable, love or arranged. That is my point. That is why I don’t think it’s right to judge her for not knowing her partner.

          You said you have very little sympathy for women who marry blind-folded and that it relates to arranged marriages in particular. That’s not entirely fair because people change and relationships change. Otherwise love marriages would have a 0% divorce rate, wouldn’t they?

          Your other points about her entitlement are completely separate from this one issue. Those may all be true and I would still think there is an issue with the line between accountability and blame here.

          Like

    • One question on a practical level: why is it so critical to maintain a big apartment and pay an EMI? Can’t you sell it and pass on the mortgage to the new buyer, thus leaving you both at least with fewer financial pressures to add to the mess?

      Like

      • The man seems to want her to pay the EMI so that one day when he returns from the US after his MBA, he has a big apartment waiting for him, for which the lady is busy paying the EMI. How convenient! Btw, on whose name is the house? I have to read the mail again to know the details.

        Like

      • Status. Her husband’s ego is attached to this lifestyle that this couple is clearly not able to afford. He wants to live as well as his friend who holds a much better job with a much better income.

        Like

    • Dear LW,
      Don’t waste more time in this marriage.I just read this comment of yours that your husband didnt want to be married… So just leave….I empathize your disappointment.

      Like

  21. Hmmm…. looks like you both got married not to get married to each other, but to get married to achieve different things that you both had in mind. You wanted to have babies, he wanted someone to stay back in the UK as a placeholder for him while he did his MBA back in the U.S.

    Marriage of convenience turned wrong.

    He was obviously wrong to expect you to work when you clearly specified you have no intentions of working. And though I can’t find anything in what you did as technically wrong, the romantic in me is saddened at this marriage of convenience and the fact that you are indignant that your expectations weren’t met when your expectations were never about the man, but about the babies you wanted to have before you need to have a hysterectomy. (Did you mention those fears to him before you got married?)

    You can easily divorce him and him you, cos you don’t seem to really care for each other.

    Whatever.

    How sad is our world.
    I think I need a drink.

    Like

  22. Hi Sharanya,

    I live and work in the UK and I have a good idea of the job market here. Let me just confirm your doubts that point 1 and 2 here are impossible. Not just unlikely but impossible. I don’t mean to discourage, if this was your own dream, but everyone starts at the start. Without a UK degree and with a foreign employment history as admin, it’s impossible for you to quickly land a job that fulfils all your husband’s demands, even if you were willing. Most freshers who are single in London can only manage to rent a room in a house. This is a completely unrealistic demand.

    I also don’t understand why they need you to work for this, impossible as that it. Why not rent out a place? Why would you stay alone in a totally foreign place with no existing support system when they can rent the place out? Even if you were super career oriented and wanted to stay in London, why would you work for years just to support a property that’s not on your name? It makes NO sense. Something is either fishy in their story or they’re idiots with no grasp on reality.

    So yeah, this is all so unrealistic that it can never pan out. I also don’t understand why he is only talking of lse. There are other top mba schools in the UK. Also, why not an executive mba? Why go to the US without even trying all top UK schools when you can do an MBA in the UK in one year flat whereas it takes two years in the US? Again, this is super silly and makes NO sense. Something is either off with his story or he’s an idiot who can’t get into a top school anywhere for anything or he’s rambling pointlessly and you’re taking him too seriously.

    Besides, the house emi will be a small fraction of a Harvard mba fees. That fee alone runs into crores. Why do need you to foot this bill if they’re rich enough to fund the MBA?

    Your mistake was assuming that the arranged marriage is actually a contract with a baby and smooth finances built in. It’s crucial to know who you marry. Even if he didn’t go to the US now, it doesn’t sound like he wants a baby now or can support one. Unless you discussed a quick baby before you married, your dream is a bit unrealistic too.

    I think everyone involved needs a reality check. I also wonder if their real reason for pressuring you is that they’re not as rich as you think and need you to fund his London life and the MBA is never meant to materialize. You need you talk . A lot.

    Like

  23. Dear LW,

    I’m very very sorry for the situation you’re in right now. It’s utter crap, and you’re right, it’s things that should be fully mentioned before marriage. It is one thing to say that a person’s dreams and goals change after marriage. This is true. But it is entirely a different story to be so utterly self-centered about it, without a care for anyone else’s needs.

    My father too did his MBA. He was in his fifties when he did it. It had been his dream to do it for a very long time, because he desperately wanted a Master’s degree. But my father never made the decision without consulting everyone in his family, including me. He spent days agonizing over it, going over all the financial requirements, talking to everyone that he possibly could about how it would affect all of us. If any of us, at any point in time, had had an objection, he would have fully taken that into account. At the end of the day, we all gave our consent. It was probably the hardest thing that he’d ever done in his life (imagine going back to school after thirty years). But he always made it clear that as much as he was doing it for his own pride, he was doing it for us too, because having an MBA would enable him to get a better job and provide a better life for the rest of us.

    Your husband, unfortunately, isn’t even taking your needs into consideration. He is simply dumping a whole lot of responsibility on you, without consulting you about anything at all, and simply expecting you to go with the flow. Not to mention, he’s not doing it for you, or for your joint future. He is doing it solely so that he can prove to his friends that he’s as good as them. This is not the marriage you signed up for. Again, it is one thing for a person to acquire new dreams after marriage. We all have to set new goals at some point in our lives. But when there are other people who are in this equation, who are going to be affected by it, it is simply not logical to just ask others to drop all of their wants and needs to cater to you. Your husband is being selfish. He is encroaching on your own needs in order to extinguish the inferiority complex that he has when compared to his friends, and that’s not fair to you.

    My advice to you would be to talk to your husband. Ask him if there is a way you can both reach a compromise. Does he absolutely have to cross the pond in order to get his MBA? Why can’t he join a course in the UK itself, that doesn’t involve so much distance? Also, why can’t he look into joining a part-time course, where he can keep his job and continue to earn while still learning? It’s unfair to ask you to shoulder all the financial responsibilities like this. If he says no to all of the above, and you are absolutely sure that you don’t want to live in a marriage like this, then I’m afraid divorce might be the only option.

    Like

  24. Sharanya,
    IMHO, you should talk honestly about all these thoughts that are flying through your head to your husband.
    I totally understand that you had expected your families to be a part of this when you ventured into an arranged marriage. Even in that case, this is your life and of course his. Therefore, this has to be settled between you both. I do think your fears are legitimate. However, his dreams are also legitimate.
    The discussion that I am suggesting should include your honest opinions, however without belittling him. The email you have written indicates that you do not have respect for this person. But I do understand your lack of respect given the circumstances and you of course don’t really know this person. But be an adult about it. A bit of respect goes long way.

    While you are at it, ask yourself, if you really want to be with this person for another 40+ years?
    If not, is it because he wants to do an MBA (which is a really short term issue). If there are more reasons to be incompatible, you are right in contemplating divorce.

    You are feeling cheated now, quite rightly so. But if you can get past that feeling, do you find other good qualities that you would like in this person? If you take this MBA and earning obsession apart, what do you see in this person?

    You mentioned he married you for your beauty. It is good that you know this. So ask him if he finds you compatible given your inability to support him the way he wants. It is practically impossible to pay an emi in London in a posh area with a Secretary’s salary. Lay that out to him clean and clear. It is not that you are not willing to, but it is impossible to get a job that is high paying right away.
    As you explained, if he finds you incompatible because you are unable to provide monthly emi dowry, then it will be clear that you both are incompatible to each other.
    This would probably induce some sense into him. If it does not, you have to consider separation seriously. I think you should absolutely not go ahead with your baby plan given the circumstances.

    Like

  25. He should have mentioned wanting to do an MBA- before the marriage.

    I’m going to have to say your husband’s demand doesn’t sound selfish to me. Being insistent and unyielding (on his part) is the real problem here- but lets look at what his expectations are-

    -He wants you to work for 24 months- not more
    -To pay off the EMIs of a house YOU will be living in, in that time
    -He isn’t expecting ANY financial support for the MBA course fees
    -On completion of his MBA, he will earn a lot more, you can quit your job, and enjoy the lifestyle you envisioned for yourself for the rest of your life.

    Essentially, his MBA means putting your dreams TWO years behind his dreams. I’d like to respectfully point out while your dreams (having babies) are anyway not possible even without MBA,his dream (and it’s a value adding degree for crying out loud)- will eventually make yours possible.
    It’s your call.

    Like

    • “-To pay off the EMIs of a house YOU will be living in, in that time” That is besides the point. She might choose to live in a smaller (and cheaper) flat. She might choose to take in roommates. She might even choose not to live in London at all but move to the suburbs where rent would be cheaper. Also, please note that the flat is not in her name at all. If she was a shareholder in the flat, then yes, she should contribute in paying the EMI, but if she is not, then it is up to her whether or not she wants to do it.

      I do agree with the rest of your points.

      Like

      • @Fem,
        I have since read the OP’s other comments and the whole situation makes less and less sense to me. Some of her comments seem at times to be self-contradictory, but I definitely have more sympathy for her now when I first wrote this comment.

        Also, if the man is not a permanent resident/citizen, it can only mean that he is on a work permit and she is classed as a dependant- and will have to leave the country when he does. I personally NOW think he wants her to find an employer for immigration reasons- else why would you stay on in a place where citizenship/residency have been repeatedly denied, when you are anyway planning to move to another place for MBA?

        I may be entirely wrong.
        Also, I too need a drink🙂

        Like

      • I agree. She didn’t buy the place and she’s being made to live in it. If she is to support herself for two years, she should do it where she wants to and can afford to live. The EMIs are not her cross to bear!

        I think if he just does his MBA in the UK, he spends less money, finishes in a year, doesn’t live across the ocean and everyone is happy. I suspect there are other issues he’s not revealing, like he’ll never get a student/work visa in the UK (and wants her to get a work visa so he can get a spouse visa) or that he can’t afford an MBA anyway but wants to live in London. Something is off with his reasons to want to go to the US and with what he says he wants from her.

        Like

    • @ IHM
      Is it possible to add the OP’s further responses to the comments as ‘edited to add’ in the main post itself? This comment of mine was written first – in response to the main post, After I began scrolling through the comments section I realised the OP had added a lot of new and relevant information.
      That makes this comment above ^ entirely redundant🙂

      Like

  26. You’ve mentioned multiple times on this forum that you have no respect for your husband because of his double standards and that you feel betrayed through this marriage on many counts. If we assess this objectively now, your key expectations out of this marriage, namely children, living with your partner (as opposed to long distance relationship) and financial stability (you must understand that you should contribute to this too) are not likely to be fulfilled. So you need to re-evaluate if it is worth it to be continuing with this marriage, when you don’t have any emotional attachment towards your partner and none of your expectations are likely to be fulfilled. Before taking this decision, you can discuss with your partner to sort things and try out couple’s therapy if you are both interested. But please do not keep running to your parents and expect them to communicate on your behalf – you should face your problems like an adult.

    If you both are keen on making this work, you can ask your husband to sell his UK house (assuming you’re fine with this – In any case, it is unfair if you expect to keep the house when only your in-laws and husband have paid for it). At least you wouldn’t have the burden of down-payments. If your husband ‘really’ ‘wants’ MBA ‘that much’, he should make this sacrifice – he can’t ‘have the cake and eat it too’. Yes he has every right to do an MBA with his savings and I even agree that you can’t take his financial support for granted – But if you can sustain yourself in India and make do without the UK house, there is no reason why you should pay for ‘his dream’ of settling in UK with his own house. Going to the US with him is not an option: you can’t expect your in-laws/parents to fund your higher studies and support you two financially. You mentioned that you would want to come back to India and sustain yourself through a job here – I think this is a very sensible move if your husband is insisting on MBA – and it is very reasonable too – you’ll be closer to your family and will have some form of personal support that way. Please don’t neglect financial independence if you’re coming back to India – I’m saying this as strongly as I can – please concentrate on building a strong career to support yourself. If you really want babies that much, you can even consider adoption later – but you need to sustain yourself financially first.

    On the whole, I find your husband and his family very fishy. Like Carvaka said, may be they are not rich. And why was your husband’s application rejected twice earlier? Why is he obsessed with living in UK? While you’re guilty of believing everything your in-laws and husband told you before marriage on face value, they’re completely wrong in lying to you. I suggest you to deal with them very cautiously – did you give dowry before marriage? Keep your documents such as passport, visa, educational certificates etc. safely with you. And same applies for jewelry (if any) too – keep the jewelry with your parents or in a bank locker under your name. I disagree with Fem on getting the house in UK transferred to your name – please don’t do it if you can’t pay the EMIs – you’ll be stuck with a loan on your name.

    Like

    • Just saw that you mentioned that he is the one who keeps running to his mother whining he is stuck in this marriage. He clearly didn’t want this marriage in the first place and you yourself have mentioned that you’ve considered divorce – so I think the way forward is clear to you. Make your husband face this conversation about what you both were expecting from this marriage and what next steps you should take as a couple. If you’re taking the divorce path, please keep career as a priority now.

      Like

  27. Entering late into this mess.. i just have 2 things to say.

    You can study whenever you want to- age is not bar to education. and that 30+ time limit is just pure BS. nothing wrong in going for an MBA, I’m 40+ ( and more ) and I’m doing a course in ecological balance. and yes hope to put it to good use, so it’s no timepass. My husband was close to 30 when he did a legal course . of course we didnt run to mummy papa to fund all this, we saved and sacrificed and did it by ourself, yes we have kids and went thru it all with them hanging on for the ride.

    Both of you seem to want to be rich and life the life without paying the price. my dear there are no free lunches int his world and an MBA is certainly not the ticket to riches. but then again it’s your choice . i would suggest you both learn the pleasure of earning and living in your own money, the joy is insurmountable.

    Like

  28. This story does seem to grow more fishy. We clearly do not have more info on the husband. I think, give up the flat if you can’t afford it. Also, if you guys cannot reach a conclusion, it’s seems better to separate.

    I agree with most of what fem said, but sometimes, we have no way of knowing if somebody is telling the truth or lying. Things seem nice in the beginning and to be fair, the lady did put all her terms on the table. The guy seemed deceitful about it.

    i have been renting for quite a while and the rental market is not so nice here due to high demand. I always am honest about all my requirements and clarify my stance on what I need from a home. So many people say okay and go back on their word and are not okay with some things 3 weeks after I move in. Which makes me think ” why the fuck did not say this earlier?”

    In some ways arranged marriage, speed dating, looking for rentals are similar. You pursue it to the next round, if things seem okay or you drop it. People often lie for whatever reasons to get things done.

    I have seen a girls engagement being called off coz the guy changed his mind, the reality was his parents were forcing him and he had a girlfriend. But you should have seen how romantic the guy was initially, sending her flowers and all. She stated what she needed, but luckily for her, he called it off and criticized her skin color, her attitude etc.

    There are plenty of people in love marriages who see their husbands turn a new shade when married. Their lovey covey husband cannot stand upto momma after marriage.

    Yes, it is foolish to walk into a marriage so quickly but more than that, it seems like 2 immature people who run to parents for money and issues got into it. That’s the problem.

    Like

  29. LW,
    I am almost your age and have no greater insights to life than you. But let me put something forward.
    Going by the sound of it, your husband

    a) has been in London for quite some time
    b) has been working in financial industry for quite sometime and knows the
    processes and flows associated with it
    c) has a friend circle of bankers and people from financial backgrounds who are ound to have realistic opinions on career options and aspiratiopns in their respective fields

    So your husband’s decision to do an MBA should have been well researched and well thought of. Now ,since he has been in the city for long, he should be familiar with the job market. And if he clearly knows your acadamic qualifications and career background, there is no reason why he should have unrealistic expectaions from you.

    I find it quite intriguing to think that an educated guy who knows the job market and who is quite familiar with the difficulty of climbing the careerladders would conclude that his wife with lesser qualification would land at a high paying job with the wink of an eye.

    So, I guess he is mainly looking at having you stay in the county with some job, so that if he doesnot land at a job as soon as he finishes the course, he can still come back as your dependent!
    The paying emi might have come up in the arguement, but I doubt that was the main purpose of him stressing the point that his wife should remain in London with a job.

    Plus, he is going to try for a course in London top schools and is planning to move out to London only if he doesn’t get any ! I do agree on the fact that if at all you decide to pursue a degree, you better do it from a good college.So it is fair that he wants to attend a top college and seems like he has saved up for it.

    Now, what I find puzzling is why he had not made this clear before marriage.This clearly looks like a well planned goal of his and not something that came up sporadically. And to hear that he had emphasized on not wanting to be in a long distance relationship makes the whole thing confusing.It was very wrong on his side to hide his plans from you and your family.

    Like

  30. I think in this particular case, the guy solely is at fault! the LW had made it amply clear what her plans were regarding baby, work and a long distance relationship. Agreeing to these before marriage and going back on words post marriage is definitely not fair to her. I am not judging her on her choice of not wanting to have a career after marriage or wanting kids asap given the medical history of her family. Its absolutely fair to have your conditions for marriage, no matter what they are, as far as both the parties are agreeing on them. i think she was pretty straight forward and honest before entering in to the partnership. Being told to do exactly opposite of what you signed for, she has all rights to feel betrayed.
    The guy here seems to be facing serious self esteem and attitude issues, and even if they somehow figure out to have his MBA done from some US univ, his problems would not be solved, since they are much larger than acquiring a mere degree. The problem is deeper and needs serious discussion on what exactly he wants out of life. This race with people around will not lead him anywhere. This guys needs serious counseling and needs to be explained some basic life lessons- the main being that it is never lead in a relative term. His mind still seems to be stuck in school. My friend got more marks than me in subject X- i will take tuitions and catch up with my friend in the next term!! He needs to grow up. May be some talking and discussing with some mature family member/ friend may help. Professional help from physiologist may also help.
    I haver nothing more to add on the options front, as to from where to do MBA etc; however in my opinion he first needs to figure out, if MBA is actually the solution to his problems. I doubt.

    Like

  31. I am not indulging in victim blaming, but it feels like she didn’t dig deep enough during the getting to know stage of the arranged marriage. Being in the market myself, I am surprised to find that many ladies 25-28 are surprised and sometimes even offended when I ask them about important things like plans for kids, place of settling down, future career trajectory. It is not that I have any primitive view on any of these but I want to know their stand on this. I think people male/female should ask their would-bes about these important things.

    Like

  32. This whole scenario is such a mess all around. I haven’t managed to figure out why exactly you both decided to get married to each other. Seems like you got married because you wanted to have children and he got married because wanted someone to pay his bills why he studied. And something tells me that you would have happily substitued your husband for some other “eligible” bachelor on marriage day and vice versa – basically there does not seem to have much “like” between you both let alone love when you got married.

    Based on my assumption above, I don’t know how much willing both of you would be to work towards sustaining your marriage. There needs to be something which can act as a strong motivation to make the effort worthwhile. As of now, there seems to be nothing – you don’t seem to respect each other’s choices or consider each other’s needs while making plans for the future.

    Given all this, I think you both need to go to a marriage counsellor and hash it out. Simultaneously, reevaluate what this marriage means to both of you, what you want to get out of it and whether you both are on the same page. Then think about whether you both can live with the results of this introspection.

    Like

  33. LW, am a bit late on this. There are so many layers here …..

    Your husband seems to define his happiness and success through others. This always leads to misery. He never mentioned the MBA in the US plan. He gave you the impression that you were both going to live in London and he was financially all set. You are upset over the above two things. Fair enough.

    You wanted to have kids early on and you were open about this before getting married. You assumed he was financially well off and you could afford to have kids. So, you were honest with him.

    What your husband did wrong – lying/deception – which to me is pretty unforgivable, and often is not a character trait that is easily changed.

    What you are doing wrong
    – involving your parents in the conflict (you are an adult and it’s better to keep parents out of husband/wife conflicts)
    – expecting his “rich’ parents to foot his MBA and other bills (they are under no obligation to do so, both of you are adults)
    – expecting him to not pursue his dreams because he is 30 + (There is no age bar on dreams. Granted, he must do the work and find a source of funding for his dreams in a reasonable manner, with your involvement and cooperation.)

    Next steps?
    First ask yourself: “Can I forgive his lying?” This is a personal decision for you to make. If you can forgive, talk to him about it first. Tell him you are hurt. If he is truly repentant, he will express it. This is an important first step, because, you cannot have a marriage (arranged or love) without trust. If he is defensive and justifies his behavior, I’m afraid, this is not a good foundation for marriage, and you will likely see many such conflicts based on violation of trust.

    Next, come to an agreement that all major decisions in marriage will be arrived at, JOINTLY, after gathering all the necessary facts, assessing both partners’ needs and ensuring that the decision is practical and hurts neither partner.

    Then, have a respectful talk with him. Tell him that although he has every right to pursue an MBA, the way he is going about it makes is not viable. Yes, you will be there to support his dreams, but discuss what is within your means. Where he chooses to do it (city), and which school, etc. need to be worked out in a more SENSIBLE WAY, taking into account your job prospects, earning potential, your current lifestyle (can you cut personal/living expenses to pay for school?). You could make an cash flow spreadsheet with earnings (current and potential), loans, and costs.
    If he was simply being short sighted about his plans, he may listen to some reasoning from you. If, on the other hand, he has a hidden agenda to go to the US, while you stay behind in London, he may not listen to your ideas.
    If he doesn’t listen to reasoning, and continues to make preposterous plans, it’s time for you to call it quits.

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  34. Sharing a related personal experience here …

    When my husband wanted to do a post-doc, I had just graduated with a Masters in the US. I thought he just been in school for 5 whole years, now he’s going to get a job, and we’re going to pay off our student loans and have kids. But, no, he changed his mind. There was this “amazing project” he wanted to be involved with. It was not the best scenario from my POV, but after talking about it at length, I agreed to it. So, I started working in my first job, while he pursued his research. We didn’t have to cut expenses because we were already living very frugally (having lived as students for quite a while, and having come to a foreign country without a penny in hand).

    We arrived at this decision jointly. If he had decided to get a job, I was ready to have kids. But when he wanted to put off the job and do his post doc, we jointly decided to postpone having kids, as it was too risky – with me just starting to work for the first time in a new country. We wanted to save enough, so we could give our kids the kind of life we wanted to give them. Neither of us wanted to get our parents to take either the financial or work responsibility for our kids (turning them into babysitters or having kids and dumping them in India).

    His decision to pursue a post doc was not something I expected. In a marriage, people do change their minds sometimes, and that’s okay. But we do have the responsibility to ensure that what they pursue is reasonable, and ensures that neither is badly hurt in the process. And the adjustments that are needed to pursue dreams ought to be made willingly, not forced upon either partner.

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  35. @ pink: If my situation was the other way round, ie a wife wanted to go for the MBA in USA and asked husband to pay the EMI for the place wife’s parents had bought for them I’d say its wrong. First being a Secretary isn’t a well paying job whether its a man or woman, so in that case the husband probably couldn’t afford it. Second, if the husband had moved to London to stay with wife post marriage, & she was going somewhere to fulfill her dreams, he should also have a right to live in his hometown or wherever he was comfortable,right? Why should he remain behind just so she can come back & job hunt, especially if he hadn’t been told all these plans before?
    @ Everyone who claims I don’t want to work & just sit at home, this isn’t true. I did want to work as well, whether it is opening a business or working as a Secretary, but it takes some time to find work as a Depedent Pass holder especially as I’m not a skilled worker.
    Right from the beginning of my marriage I noticed a change of attitude in my husband, he began to belittle me constantly, comparing me to all the academically & professionally brilliant women in his friend circle. He kept mentioning how much more they earned, how they managed both house & office perfectly etc.
    As I said, I’d never said I am professionally very brilliant. There are jobs in the world, like PA and primary school teacher which unfortunately don’t pay well.Whether men or women do such jobs.
    @ Desidaaru: what is the guarantee that after his MBA
    1) he’ll land a high paying job( he won’t do long hours)
    2) land a job in London itself,given the state of the economy?

    He’s blamed me for his failures before, when his citizenship was rejected the third time just six weeks after I’d moved to London, he & his mom blamed me for not getting a job & showing a better family income. In 6 weeks its very difficult for a PA to find a job.
    He’s told me categorically that he expects me to remain behind in London while he goes off to the USA, so he can come back & job hunt etc, I think even if he backs out of whatever else he said earlier I have a right to move back to India if he’s off to the States. But then he’ll blame me, he’ll say he’d definitely have found a job were it not for me.

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    • I hadn’t read through all of your comments (I apologize for that).Wrote as I read through…. I understand that you had been honest about all your preferences and expectations but they have not been so… I understand your feeling of being betrayed and hurt.Frankly, to me, there is no point staying in this marriage. Coz like u mentioned, your husband whines about the marriage ….. So if you do stay married you both will be unhappy accusing each other. Stay happy!🙂 My best wishes.

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    • Your original post was full of blames and expectations and we only replied to that. Now that more information is forthcoming, a clearer picture is emerging. I really think you should simply cut your losses here. And please, do get a job first, doesn’t matter how little it pays. Just having a monthly salary should give you some security.

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  36. bad scene i agree, but there are ways to salvage it and maybe grow to love and get along an dbe happy. How about
    1. getting a job, and maybe roommates who will help with the EMI in london
    2. sure you’ll be apart but it’s just 2 yrs and he gets a n education he wants and you’ll have company too
    3. If he gets a great job well and good, if not it’s just 2 yrs and he got an education which is never a bad thig.
    4. you can then think of a baby and he will have known what he’s capable of.

    yes you have to work for 24 months, but having roommates pays the emi and you get to keep the property to make a home together.
    sometimes you will have short term pain for long term happiness. and even if you are alone, you can have fun, make friends, learn something you want , open a business etc.,
    i dont agree with your husband comparing himself ot friends, my hubby worked with mckinsey, sure it’s hard but they get good breaks and no family life will be fine. you have to know to set limits , but not every MBA gets in. only the top. give him a chance to try and then see what happens.

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  37. @Punjay
    I would’ve been critical of his “dreams” even if he was a she, I had felt that he wasn’t at all supportive of the software engineer girls’ dreams of going abroad for one year, he felt that as he lived in London, she being a woman in an arranged marriage should move to London(his words about her).
    So what’s so special about his dreams?
    I’d once nurtured hopes of being an actress in films or TV, and I’d told him jokingly that when he goes for his MBA in USA, I’d like to go to Mumbai , live with my paternal aunt there for two years and try my luck in films. He said I shouldn’t even “think” of such stuff as I’m married into such a “respectable” and “high status” family.
    Every time I’ve gone to India after marriage with him (thrice so far) he’s insisted that I spend half the time in my in laws place and half with my parents,he’s never stayed with my parents. Once i wanted to spend a couple of days more at my parents place to attend a wedding, he said next thing he’ll have to start staying at my place because if I’m an “outlier” as a woman, he’d have to be an “outlier” as a man next.
    He says that his best friend, that McKinsey guy’s wife also spends half her time at her in laws place.
    Well he also financially supports his widowed MIL and three SIL’s
    If you want all the patriarchal privileges of being an Indian man, you should do all the traditionally expected patriarchal duties of an Indian man as well right, like like completing your education before getting married at 30? (or at least told wife & her family of such plans?)

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    • Ugh, why didn’t you give this information earlier? This is more important than him wanting to do MBA. If he has money to support four women, I suppose it is not too much to expect him to support a fifth! If he doesn’t ‘allow’ you to visit your parents, then this is non-negotiable. Walk out.

      Gosh, at the rate you are carefully doling out information, maybe in another week, we’ll hear he has been physically abusive too.

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      • @Fem I think she meant her husband’s Mckinsey friend supports 4 women, not her husband.
        @LW, I dont want to go over my thoughts in detail as they have been ouitlined by most people here already but having been in the financial industry in London for a while, I would like to add the following. This industry is volatile and stressful with layoffs more common than anywhere else. So maybe your husband’s insecurity arises partly from these fears as well; would be great if you could have a candid chat with him to see if he opens up. Although after reading your further comments, I doubt he is mature enough to do this but maybe worth a shot. Also, would be useful to know if he is strictly against an MBA from the UK itself. What about letting the house in London on rent while you go back to India during his MBA (might pay a decent part of the EMI)? Is this something he is ok with? I stress, I am not justifying his actions and I firmly believe that separation is the best course if he refuses to budge from his current stand. Also, it is high time you put your foot down on some basic things atleats, like being able to visit your folks while you are in India!

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    • Your husband seems delusional to think you can support yourself in London and pay EMIs on a posh apartment on a secretary’s salary. He’s seeking self-esteem in an MBA, and his lack of self-esteem clouds his judgement to all possible repercussions of his MBA dreams.

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    • @LW, your husband is dripping with male entitlement and extreme selfishness. He just expects everyone around him to bend over backwards to fullfill his dreams and aspirations (no matter how delusional or impractical). He wants a beautiful wife, he wants a high earning wife, he wants a wife who will spend half time in India with his parents but he won’t live with the girl’s family. He wants a high paying job to keep up with buddies lifestyle but he won’t work long hours like them. He did not want the software engineer girl because she wanted to go to US for a year, but he can do the same. Wow ! honestly he is just a spoiled brat.
      Being an only son in a rich Indian family he always had his way with whatever he wanted so far from mummy daddy.
      Some comments mentioned he should have married a high earning girl in UK, well I could have been one of those (I am not in UK). I already pay mortgage/living expenses on my own salary in a city similar to London and could support the hubsand while he is getting a MBA but I would absolutely NEVER do it for a guy as selfish and entitled as this one. Seriously, does he ever think of anyone else except himself?

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  38. @ Punjay & Confusedhumanity: MBA was a long cherished dream of his, not something that came up later. After my marriage I learned from my mom’s mutual friend that they’d tried to fix up his marriage with a girl one year junior to me in school(I’d known her in school). She told me her parents had turned down the match because they’d mentioned they want her to remain behind in London for two years, her father felt it was an unreasonable expectation that’s why they’d hid this stuff from us IMO, they realized that we too might turn the match down if we know this whole expectation.
    @ Everyone who thinks my in laws are fishy, I completely agree. They’re genuinely rich though. But the son has made this whole staying in London & making it big there a prestige issue for himself.
    He also thinks its wrong to ask his dad to pay the EMI but its okay to ask wife.

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    • Hi Sharanya,
      so yiur husbands family clearly did not give you and your family a clear picture. What ever decision you make is your personal choice, staying in this marriage or getting divorced both would need great mental strength and i am sure a bold woman like you can face both. What ever you decide, it’s not the end of the world…. wish you all the best

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    • Sharanya, my personal opinion here, although I’m sure it’s controversial is – your husband’s career problem is bigger than you. He needs to get a career mentor (may be even one of his friends), someone more accomplished than both of you. That way, it’ll be clear what’s a good path forward and you’ll also be more convinced of his actions.

      Tell him you’re willing to support his decisions, but after consulting with a mentor.

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  39. Dear LW,

    All in all, your husband was not interested in the marriage. It is best to separate, unless you develop feelings for each other because from what you say, looks like he did not want to marry, but do his MBA and was bullied by his parents to marry. Maybe his mom told him to do an mba after he marries or whatever. He could have done lot of things differently but so could you.

    Learn from your experience and move on if you guys cannot talk it out or make your partnership a priority.

    And I still don’t get why you guys are so hung on to that flat? Why not just downsize and rent the old one? Sell it. Takes plenty of stress off you both.

    And if you are on dependant visa, why should you even be staying in London for anyone. He could have married a citizen na?

    The guy is frustrated because he can’t stand up for himself or his dreams and will dump it on you. Your fights could get ugly as he blames all of the problems on you. Be prepared for that.

    On the other hand, you have quite a bit of growing up to do – stop running to your/his parents for money/fights whatever. Accept that marriage is a partnership. Learn that there are no age limits for dreams/education – aka do not be an ageist.

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  40. The husband’s point of view is illogical but I am unable to understand the point of view put forth by many people that since she put down all her expectations before hand so the husband is somehow now bound to the deal. Neither of them are bound to any deal. Marriage is not bonded labor or slavery at either end.

    He should go have an MBA or a course in spiritual awakening if he so desires. He can’t ask her to pay the EMI though. I actually do not understand how exactly he is gonna force her to pay the EMI. What if she does not get a job? What can he do? not more than nothing.

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  41. OP unfortunately seem to have an extremely patriarchal mindset which is dripping from every paragraph she writes. She seems to think husbands, especially the ones that are over 30 or 4 years older, have somehow the responsibility to set the wife’s life up. The line about “affording a wife” was , sorry to say, made me felt like throwing up. I really hope my daughters never pick up such ideas from this twisted society.

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  42. This may not be entirely relevant to LW’s issue but something I always wanted to put forward in this forum.

    When women say they are not very career oriented – what do they mean? That right now mummy daddy provide for me and tomorrow the husband should? Why would you want to do that to your life? Being dependent on someone else entirely all the time.. Should’nt we all irrespective of the fact we are male or female, irrespective of the fact we are academically bright or not, be earning for ourselves?

    My parents fall in the category of parents who protect their girls with the intention of handing them over to another set of protective hands.. I broke free of it.. Moved out to work.. Married by my own will .. Is’nt it time womean realized that even if you are a female you have to work and earn? Here I am not talking of women who are deprived to the chance to study and work etc. I am talking about the previleged ones who have every opportunity but don’t choose to work .. well because daddy is rich and will find a rich husband too..

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    • Totally agree. One does not have to be “career oriented” in order to be financially independent – you simply have to take responsibility for yourself.

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    • Well, not being career oriented is a choice for many. It may not be a choice you agree with, but in the end it’s up to each woman (and man) to decide what they want out of life.
      Obviously, making that choice can lead to being financially dependent, but that’s a chance these women chooses to take. Also, these women make other contributions to the family/couple, no?
      I really don’t think women should be pressured into making choices according to feminism’s flavour-of-the-month. Every woman is first and foremost an individual, not some soldier for a cause, and should make a choice that’s best for her and her partner.

      I suppose it’s unfair to men (and single and not-so-rich women) that this specific choice is obviously only available (for the most part) to married women, that too from privileged backgrounds. But such is life, etc.

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  43. Well, I am pitching in a little late. I honestly believe that the prime reason of your problems is your basic motivation to get/stay married. My story is a little, if not completely, similar to yours. My husband and I dream of doing PhD from a good foreign University. Both of us are 29 and have been married for two years. Both of us want kids in our early 30’s. We live quite a cushioned life with our jobs right now and can avail things with our own income that make life easy in a metro city. We both know PhD and kids won’t be a super combination and we will need to sacrifice our luxuries in order to fulfill our dreams. Having said that, our dreams mean more to us than these luxuries. Also, the condition that we are going to take up PhD only when we get admitted in the same univs adds to the tough situation. We know that this decision will put us “behind” (if that even means anything) our peers in the social sense. Personally I do not believe in being “behind” or “ahead” anybody. It is just a matter of priorities and what is important to you.

    What I wish to explain to you is that you need to understand there is no age to study and go for your dreams, I know of a 55 year old lady (American) who started her MBBS at the age of 45. You are being so judgmental. You can’t generalize that a person SHOULD have completed his dreams (read studies) before a certain age!!
    Likewise, your husband needs to understand that it is unfair to force you into helping him pursue his dreams. You can’t force your partner to do that, it has to come from within. It is wrong on his part to have assumed that you would not have a problem with this arrangement and he should have told you his plans before marriage.

    Many sensible suggestions have already been given above. I only wish to add, please be a little more supportive and understanding. Make your hubby understand your POV and try to talk it out. Try to arrive at a common ground where BOTH of you acknowledge the need of your partner and are ready to make personal sacrifices. Also, talking will help only if BOTH of you understand and are empathetic of each other’s hopes and dreams. If this is not possible, then sadly, I do not see happiness for either of you in this marriage.

    Divorce is definitely an option but how do you guarantee the next man you marry will not have any dreams at any point of time that will not clash with your’s?

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  44. I am super late on this post, but wanted to comment.

    @Sharyana–I think you’ve ended up in a very bad deal here. Arranged marriages are like business contracts, EXCEPT that there’s no accountability in the contract. At least you can sue someone in a court of law if they breach a business contract. The prospective bride or groom can say whatever the hell they want, if they want the other party to agree to the marriage. You’ve found this out the exceptionally hard way.

    Let’s take the arranged marriage/ Indian culture equation out of the scenario and focus on your husband. From everything written here, I gather that he willingly deceived you. His family was looking for a pretty homemaker for their son prior to the marriage. After the marriage, they want a pretty homemaker+super career woman. All the while, your husband keeps complaining to his mother about how he never wanted to get married, and his mother, somehow, seems to blame you for not getting a job while on a dependent Visa. Add your husband’s massive inferiority complex to the mix, and you have, what I’d call, a disaster of a marriage. To me, it’s very unattractive when people consistently compare themselves with their peers.

    If I were you, I’d cut my losses and leave–move back with my parents, look for a job nearby, and move out. The man seems like he’s going to continue to have this awful inferiority complex (all the while refusing to put in the hard work required for the kind of success he wants). Frankly, I wouldn’t even be surprised if the man’s family isn’t really rich and they just give people the impression that they’re really rich because money really matters to them. Is that the sort of person you want to share your life with?

    It seems like they lied to you, and now think you’re simply going to push yourself to magically land a high paying job (even though you don’t have the work experience and are in the UK on a dependent Visa) to support him through his MBA (which, I’d agree with you, wouldn’t benefit someone like your husband anyway because it doesn’t look like he wants to work long hours). Do you want to remain married to such a person?

    If you do not want to contemplate divorce, then I’d suggest that you immediately get a job–not a high paying one, just a regular one so you have some kind of an income. (I don’t know if that’s even possible for you, as an Indian passport holder in the UK. I know that many countries will only issue work permits/Visas for positions that are high paying). After that, I’d recommend separation and marriage counselling. But like I said, I don’t even know if getting a regular job would be possible in your circumstance.

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  45. Hmmmmm this is a tough one….
    The long-distance thing I understand, it is tough.
    It sounds like he already planned to do MBA and didn’t tell you about it. It sounds like he will do it regardless if you agree to it.
    And what the hell, why can’t he communicate directly to you instead of talking through his mother! Like, grow up man!

    And the money question – do you LOVE him?

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  46. Please don’t take pride in not wanting to take up a job. But since you are incapable of it due to your disinterest and also the tough laws of work permits in London, you could go with your husband to the US for his mba, and put your posh apartment on rent. the rent should take care of the EMI. Now, whether you’re attractive or not or whether your in-laws are rich or not can be taken out of the equation. The question boils down to whether you see yourself with the man long-term or not. if yes, his hiding his MBA dream isnt exactly a criminal offence. This is just so silly!

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  47. Pingback: “A Delhi court has refused alimony and advised the wife to find a job. Now that’s Equality.” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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