My Wife Earns More Than Me But Refuses to Help My Elderly Parents

Patrick is feeling extremely distressed about the state of his family affairs.

Laura and I have been happily married for over 5 years. She earns significantly more than I do with her high-paying job in the private sector. We’ve always shared our finances, with her contributing 70% and me 30%.

Laura’s parents migrated to our country to provide a better life for their daughters. Both Laura and her sister, Margaret, have successful careers; Laura is an architect and Margaret a surgeon. On the other hand, my parents have lower-income jobs, and I’m an only child. So, there’s a notable contrast in our family financial situations.

Laura provides financial assistance to her parents every month.

Laura has always had a special bond with her parents. Recently, they retired, and Laura and her sister, Margaret, provide them with financial assistance amounting to $3,000 each month, which I find excessive considering they have pensions. I can’t comprehend why they need $6,000.

Laura assured me that this money doesn’t come from our joint account. However, when I proposed supporting my retired parents similarly, Laura’s response was unexpected. She suggested that if I could afford to help them from my own earnings, I should do so. This left me feeling shocked and frustrated. My parents only have me to rely on, whereas Laura and her sister are financially stable, making her parents comfortable regardless.

Patrick firmly believes that this situation is unfair.

My dad suffers from Parkinson’s disease, and his health is deteriorating rapidly. Doctors have warned us that his condition will only worsen over time. Additionally, my mom is also facing health issues and lacks the physical strength to care for my dad’s needs. Unfortunately, we cannot afford a live-in caregiver, so the only viable option is to place my dad in a care facility, which means separating him from my mom. It’s frustrating because Laura knows about their situation, and her parents are currently in good health.

Laura offering financial assistance wouldn’t significantly impact her finances but would greatly benefit my parents. I can’t help but feel she’s being selfish because if our positions were reversed, I would unquestionably support her and her parents.

He chose to seek his parents’ perspective.

I recently had a phone call with my parents to vent about this unfair situation. I needed someone to talk to. My mom and dad listened to me, but they sided with Laura, saying she wasn’t obligated to assist them financially. They believe our family should handle all our challenges independently. I expected this response from them, but I think they need to change their mindset.

I’m not sure who’s right anymore. Is it wrong for me to ask my wife to support my parents? It still feels like a reasonable request to me.


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