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So...I am irritated...and he doesnt know why....

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
So...heres the story.....my husband is a mechanic for Department of Defense. Well, hes good at what he does. He likes what he does. The problem is that because hes a good mechanic....everybody comes to him when they have car troubles. Which is fine. Hes a charitable guy, and I dont care. BUT...its really starting to get to me when he spends ALL day working on someones car, and doesnt get paid for it. This was an issue before we got married, and its an issue now. I am sorry, but it costs anywhere from $800-$1500 to get a transmission replaced, and hes doing it FOR FREE. UGH! So, this afternoon, after 2 weeks of being jerked around, his brothers room-mate finally gets her car there...he tells her whats wrong with it, and fixes it, and doesnt charge her anything!!
I think that working on family and close friends cars for free is one thing...but working on someones car that only talks to you when its broken...that gets under my skin. He deserves to be paid something, especially when hes saving a person a huge amount of money. He doesnt lie either. He tells you straight whats wrong with it.
So, I was a little irritated when he told me he didnt charge anything. We certainly could use the money. And its a constant thing..."Jeremy...look at my car..." and hes gone. Gone to do it.
I dont know. Maybe its the fact that I feel like they are taking advantage of him. Hmm....am I being unreasonably irritated???
post #2 of 23
I don't think you're being unreasonable at all. I think you're right, close friends and family members could be free, but it sounds like he's being taken for granted.
It *is* especially irritating when you need the money.
wish I could help more, but best of luck and happy vibes for you
post #3 of 23
Diane, I think your irritation is perfectly rational! Your husband sounds extremely charitable, which is nice, but there has to be a line drawn at some point. I don't have any advice I can offer you, but I will say that he will probably burn himself out on all this "charity"!
post #4 of 23
I feel for you - my dear old FIL ran his own electrician's business. He never charged enough - heck they never even owned their own home - they didn't have the money. Then, when he was still working at 75 years he would come back and say he'd mended some old person's electricity for nothing because they were old. This was a regular thing and sometimes for people who had far more than they did - but he felt sorry for them. It was very sweet and charitable, but MIL and FIL were trying to get by financially too. There was no telling him though.
post #5 of 23
Your husband has a heart of gold for doing that, but I don't think you're out of line being irritated about the ever mounting cost of his generosity. I'd be irritated at the people taking advantage of him though. They should at least be paying for the cost of the auto parts. How can they live with themselves without paying for at least that? This doesn't even take into account the amount of hours it takes to fix, plus any shop materials.
post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 
I totally agree. But we have talked about this, and talked about this, and talked about this! So, I am going to give an evening or so, and get it straight what it is that bothers me...and then he and I are going to talk about it again. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't being selfish or anything. I draw the line at being taken advantage of. I am a nice person, and I dont mind helping out other people...but we have got to help ourselves at the same time. Thanks for the quick responses.
post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 
Well, they do give him money for parts...but generally, he has to go get them. And he has to drive to their house to do it. How about gas money??? How about even lunch??? He dropped a brand new engine in a 2000 Toyota Celica in 2 days. But that was a full 2 days...and he got nothing for it. UGH!!! I am mad at them. And thats even worse. I dont want to be mad at them.
post #8 of 23
post #9 of 23
Diane, I have a somewhat parallel situation. Rob loves computers and working on them and building them and troubleshooting them...and he's good at it, even though it's not his profession...and all our friends and family know it.

I do occasionally resent the time he spends on other people's computers, but I remind myself that he's having fun...for him, it's recreation, so I don't sweat it too much.

He doesn't charge for his time, either, because it's recreation for him. He does collect for any parts he buys, and there have been times when someone has been adamant that they wanted to pay him for his time, so he's told them to make a donation to a charity and get the charity to give him the tax receipt. And every so often, a friend will take us out to dinner, to thank him for his help, and me for not giving him grief about doing it.

It looks like the big difference between the two situations is that nobody tries to take advantage of Rob -- quite the opposite, in fact -- and I assure you, if I thought they were, I'd be plenty ticked off!
post #10 of 23
I, too, feel your husband is so very generous, and for that he should be commended, but I certainly see why this is upsetting you. When he is spending hour upon hour repairing these people's vehicles, not only is he not being paid, but the two of you are missing out on time you could spend together. People have a lot of nerve to ask this of him and should realize it is unfair. You just don't see his in other professions. If he was a gynocologist, would they be asking him to come over to have a look at their wife? Probably not.
I agree that you should have this talk with him. It sounds that these people are taking advantage of his kindness, and he should be receiving some sort of compensation and at the very least money for parts required.
post #11 of 23
If he doesn't charge, YOU charge. Tell the person nicely: Since my husband's been gone for x amount of hours working on your car, please pay x amount of money so we can have quite time alone at x destination. Why? Because there, we can repair our strained marriage. And say 'thank you' in your sweetest voice.

10 hours
300.00 dollars
Bed and Breakfast Inn
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dawnofsierra
..... People have a lot of nerve to ask this of him and should realize it is unfair. You just don't see this in other professions. If he was a gynocologist, would they be asking him to come over to have a look at their wife? Probably not.
.
Steph that's quite the analogy there, whippersnapper. I agree totally and good point about draining the time that the two of you could be spending together. I also like Mrs. D's suggestion: become a kinder, gentler Business Manager!
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrsd
If he doesn't charge, YOU charge. Tell the person nicely: Since my husband's been gone for x amount of hours working on your car, please pay x amount of money so we can have quite time alone at x destination. Why? Because there, we can repair our strained marriage. And say 'thank you' in your sweetest voice.

10 hours
300.00 dollars
Bed and Breakfast Inn
What a great suggestion..."Hi, I am charging you for the use of my husband..."! The point about the other professions is true too. Also, when hes gone all day on these kinds of things...nothing gets done around the house. I work, too. And he works 4 10 hour days, and I work 5 8 hour days...and split the household responsibilities. But, when hes working on a vehicle for 7 or 8 hours a day, I am picking up the slack. Once, he installed a radio and a sub speaker...something or other, I dunno...set for this guy. The guy goes in behind my husband and brother in law, and jacks with all the wiring, and blows every fuse in his car....my husband didnt get paid the first time around, and spent hour upon hour trying to sort out a mess of wires...after the guy blamed it on him! He said my husband didnt know what he was doing...::censor::censor::censor:: Then why did you bring it back, genius??? And they knew he had jacked with it. All of the wires were taped appropriately...but it took something that obnoxious for him to never touch that guys car again. I swear....and I am like fussing about it. And the guys are like "your little wife is a firecracker..." NO HIS LITTLE WIFE IS ABOUT FED UP WITH MOOCHERS. Step number one...is he and I need to talk about it, and work out a solution we can both agree on. Before I bury his tools in the back yard, and swallow the key to his craftsman tool box.
post #14 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by diane8704
What a great suggestion..."Hi, I am charging you for the use of my husband..."!

YEAH!!!!!
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by diane8704
This was an issue before we got married, and its an issue now.
Have you heard the saying "Women marry men hoping they'll change. Men marry women hoping they won't." ? You knew he had a heart of gold and was generous to a fault when you married him, so I don't think you should be angry at him. I do, however, think that you should be irritated with all the freeloaders. I like the idea of charging for your husband...or how about something like - Joe, you're such a good painter, how about a trade-off? Martha, my hubby just ADORES your eggplant. Can you make about 50 pounds for our anniversary party?
post #16 of 23
I would be upset too if my husband was working on cars and not getting compensated for his time. It sounds like there is a network of freeloaders out our way that are taking MAJOR advantage. Of course your husband doesn't see it that way!! You had mentioned you have been picking up the slack on housework-how about if you don't and see if he resumes his share(this could just be a way of getting out of housework!!) Or mention that you miss him being around the house. Or how about helping him-but then telling (or setting the rules)to the potential car repair owners. Maybe print something up and have them sign it??? Good luck!!
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Well....we had our "talk"....actually, I did the talking and he did the listening...I just very sweetly told him, that I was going to start charging people to use his services...kind of like a hooker-house, except for cars...so, we'll say I am the head "Bumper" of the business. I am going to charge them for use of my husband...so that I can go out, after all, I have done the housework, and have a great time with my friends...I am 22, after all, without kids...and my obligations have been filled...and you arent available to do yours...so, fair is fair...OR...you could start charging for what you do....Needless to say, I think I got my point across. SURPRISE!!! All it took was threatening to go out without him and never be home, and he sees my point.
I really didnt go into this marriage thinking I could change him...just hoping to persuade him to my way of thinking on certain issues, and apparently, it worked.
1 point for me!!!!! Lets just see how long it lasts....Thanks for all of the advice. You guys rock!!!
post #18 of 23
YAY!!!
post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockcat
Have you heard the saying "Women marry men hoping they'll change. Men marry women hoping they won't." ? You knew he had a heart of gold and was generous to a fault when you married him, so I don't think you should be angry at him. I do, however, think that you should be irritated with all the freeloaders. I like the idea of charging for your husband...or how about something like - Joe, you're such a good painter, how about a trade-off? Martha, my hubby just ADORES your eggplant. Can you make about 50 pounds for our anniversary party?
Hehehe, I really like this suggestion:-).

I agree, your husband sounds like a wonderful guy, and he obviously both enjoys doing the work and gets a kick out of being able to help out someone else. The fact that stuff that needs doing around your own home doesn't get done, however, is important. His helping out someone else is kind of like playing at a hobby for him - it is something he does for pleasure - and perhaps it should be looked at like a 'trade-off' with those who are taking advantage of his services. I am surprised that those whom he helps don't offer a return of some sort, either money or assistance, and it certainly says a lot about their character that they don't. I think you are well within your rights to request one of them to come over and help out with the chores that need doing at your place as an exchange. Good luck!

Kathryn
(heheh I met my husband by asking him for help with my computer, btw - that is his job. We knew each other from on-line but had never really chatted before then.)
post #20 of 23
my bf's dad's buddies have a ring of repairs.. like he does eletrical work and plumbing and little car repairs, another friend does bodywork, another does masonry, another does the more difficult car repairs, another does roofing, etc. They can call on each other whenever and ahve actually built several houses as well as doing repairs to houses, cars, whatever. It works for them because they all contribute.
post #21 of 23
My husband is one of a 5 boys and 1 girl family growing up.
They all have their own lives and most have families now.

The thing that gets me is, MY husband is the only one who apparently knows how to fix anything. He is an electrician, a plumber, heating and air, etc.....
And instead of calling a repairman, they call here.
He never asks for a dime from any of them. "It's my family" he says.
But let him start a project and need some help......
they are all too busy.
Then he lends his truck out too!!
Last time it came back with the clutch gone out.
Did they mention it when they brought it back? No, not a word.
Offer to help?? NADDA, nothin'!!
He spent the next couple of days putting in a NEW clutch BY HIMSELF.
Really P***es me off sometimes!!!
I really think they take advantage of him somtimes.
He doesn't seem to mind helping them.
The truck thing finally p***ed him off though.
Next time they asked to borrow it he actually did tell him he had to buy the new clutch and put it in. Do you think they apologized?? NOPE,
and they didn't try to come get the truck either.
It wouldn't be so bad if they returned the favor once in a while. Geeshh!
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by diane8704
So...heres the story.....my husband is a mechanic for Department of Defense. Well, hes good at what he does. He likes what he does. The problem is that because hes a good mechanic....everybody comes to him when they have car troubles. Which is fine. Hes a charitable guy, and I dont care. BUT...its really starting to get to me when he spends ALL day working on someones car, and doesnt get paid for it. This was an issue before we got married, and its an issue now. I am sorry, but it costs anywhere from $800-$1500 to get a transmission replaced, and hes doing it FOR FREE. UGH! So, this afternoon, after 2 weeks of being jerked around, his brothers room-mate finally gets her car there...he tells her whats wrong with it, and fixes it, and doesnt charge her anything!!
I think that working on family and close friends cars for free is one thing...but working on someones car that only talks to you when its broken...that gets under my skin. He deserves to be paid something, especially when hes saving a person a huge amount of money. He doesnt lie either. He tells you straight whats wrong with it.
So, I was a little irritated when he told me he didnt charge anything. We certainly could use the money. And its a constant thing..."Jeremy...look at my car..." and hes gone. Gone to do it.
I dont know. Maybe its the fact that I feel like they are taking advantage of him. Hmm....am I being unreasonably irritated???
OOOOH!! I know exactly how you feel. Everyone calls my husband for help all the time. Need a roof replaced, car worked on, fence put up, gutters replaced........anything!!!!!
What gets under my skin more that not being paid is the fact that NOBODY helps him with our projects AND.......he never does our projects b/c "he needs help". Every time they call I tell him, "Remember we have such and such to do? Tell them to come help you with this and THEN you'll help them."

I hope it gets better for you. I've been married 8 years and nothing has changed here.
post #23 of 23
Thread Starter 
I have to say that it is a little annoying when its family and they want your help, but when you need help, they are nowhere to be found. It may not get any better. But I think what gets to me the most is that he thinks I am unreasonably irritated with him. And hes the victim....NO, thats me. Doing all of the cleaning, all of cooking, etc...
My Dad's family did that once. His brother borrowed his truck....and SMOKED in it. My Dad is not a smoker. My Dad is terminally ill with a lung disease. His brother knew it...and smoked in his truck anyways. It came back with a miss in the engine as well.
Its ridiculous how some people are constantly takers when there should be an equal amount of give and take, huh?
As of right now, things seem to be evening out with us. For now. Wait until Friday when he works on his brothers room mates car. If he doesnt get paid....all bets are off.
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