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The Weight of the World is on My Shoulders:
I Feel Like I must Fix Everything

Hello Dr Matt:
My name is Melena. I'm from Minnesota. I am female and 44 years old. I am married and have been for 24 years. My situation is complicated. I am to the point I dont know what to do anymore, and Im very frustrated. I have been trying to change my life and I have worked so hard but it doesnt seem like I get very far.

We face many challenges now due to hard economic times. I have three kids between 20-24 years old. They all have worked and supported themselves. The difficulty has been that my husband isn't working due to the ecomomy being slow in his field. I am on unemployment now since losing my job in January. Needless to say things are very tight right now, and that accompanied with the fact that my husband is waiting for news about surgery for both knees. I am stressed beyond belief.

I'm having a really hard time putting food on the table and paying what I need to. Its just so hard now, and I feel like its all on my shoulders. I feel like I can't rely on him anymore. The only one I can rely on is myself and I find myself just not very impressed with him also. I know its not good about his knees and I dont know what to do but to work 20 hours a day and maybe I could keep up... HELP!!! I pray to God every night to give me faith and hope to make things better for us, but this is a very low point of my life.

My husband isn't in a rush to get a new job when he already knows this "business" isn't going to work out. We either have feast or famine, and right now its definitely a famine. Soooooo tell me if I'm an idiot???

I have decided to go off of unemployment and get two jobs that are 40 hours each. That way I can make twice the money and pay more stuff. Another problem is that myself and all the kids know that my husband doesnt really want to work at all. I dont want to freak out but in really getting stressed about everything. I feel like its all put on me and he doesnt do anything about it at all. I'm the one that will have to fix everything.

Right now I hate my life for the way it is. It wasnt like this 10 months ago. Back then it was all good and now life is just a wreck. Can you give me some advice about what to do???



Dear Melena:

All the signals seem to say: You are enabling your husband in doing what you expect him to do: "My husband doesn't seem to be in a rush to get a new job." And why do you think that is? Possibly, because he knows that you will go out and get 2 jobs, and provide for the family?

You also say: "I cant rely on him anymore" and "he doesn't do anything about it at all." Again, why do you think this is? Because he knows that you will do everything . . . and you can be relied upon!

One positive thing you can do is this: RELEASE yourself from the expectation of taking the weight of the world upon your shoulders, and simply do ALL that God expects of you. You say that you pray to God every night . . . so continue praying, and listen to Him; do whatever He inspires you to do. Read Proverbs 3:5-6 and know that the Lord keeps His promises 100% of the time.

It would also be good for you to expect your husband, and encourage your husband, to do what is right and fair: By taking on two jobs, you are sending this message to your husband: "I don't expect anything from you." By taking on two jobs, you create a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy! You are making sure that the expectation you have for your husband, plays out the way you expect it!

So, if you want the quality of your life to improve, you can begin by changing your expectation. Encourage your husband to be a contributing member of your partnership; God will absolutely help you do just that!

If your husband believes in God, and is willing to pray, then BOTH of you can follow the inspiration that will surely come, as you trust in the Lord with all your heart.

Again, you must completely abandon what appears to be an "enabling" pattern, and do whatever your inspiration directs you to do. As you do this, good things will unfold in your life -- whether or not your husband cooperates.

Finally, You will NOT change your enabling ways, and your tendency to stress-out, by reading a single email from me; but you CAN change your life in a profound way, if you will study, ponder, and apply the principles that are described in my book. Over time, and through 300 pages, you will learn what you must do to live a stress-free and happy life.

Since you believe in God, this particular article provides a good introduction to stress-free living: Perfection without Stress

The previous article gives an introduction and the principles in my book complete the project: How to live a stress-free life! One of the truths you will learn in my book is that YOU alone cannot fix your life; neither can YOU change your life in any significant way by yourself — YOU alone can only change superficial appearances. The good news is this: YOU can be "changed" by a power outside yourself. The following two poems illustrate this point: TheSoulsCaptain

Good luck, and let me know how things go!

Dr Matt

* * * * * * *

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