Being married isn’t easy. Being married to an entrepreneur can make it even more challenging and complicated. Entre-spouses (as I call those married to entrepreneurs) have to share their spouse with another love.
Businesses can be all consuming, captivating and wives often feel like they are competing for their husbands attention. Many wives of entrepreneurs say their husbands business is like “the mistress they said yes to!”
I mean, she agreed that his entrepreneurial venture was a good idea, and was supportive, or at least tried to be… in the beginning… but late hours, distracted husbands and financial pressures take their toll.
I have been married to a serial entrepreneur for 32 years and have been one myself for 20, so I know both sides of this difficulty.
Entrepreneurs feel like they are the bottom line for the business and thus its’ failure or success impacts the family. This is the most common “reason” for their all consuming involvement.
One tip I have found helpful is to go ahead and admit it!
Agree with your entre-spouse the next time she says “You are always busy, distracted, working… or putting the business first.” That will surprise her!
Because really, it’s mostly true…
So agree with her instead of trying to find the one or two times you weren’t’ in order to prove her use of “always” is wrong. I promise it will go a long way in diffusing the tension.
Try saying, You’re right, i can see how you would feel that way. and I’m sorry.”
These words will begin to create understanding and build a bridge – which is far more valuable than proving your point of “Not always.” Examples like “I made it to Bobby’s game last week and I did the family reunion thing last month!” will fall on dear ears.
“You’re right, I’m sorry.” will soften her heart and open the door to conversation and connection.
In this moment you don’t have to fix anything, you just need to hear hear. Let her vent, (even if it feels like blame or a bit extreme) Listen and validate her feelings.
This one shift will help! I promise. Try it and let me know what happens.
Bottom line, you are in this together and a successful business without a successful marriage or family life is hollow and as Zig Ziglar says, really not true success at all.
What is one issue your wife brings up that you would like me to address in my series on The Business of Marriage: Creating a Strong Marriage While Building a Successful Business? Post it below! Or connect with me on Facebook or Twitter and message me there privately