At a crossroads moment in her career, the Original Poster (OP) grapples with a decision that strains not only her professional ambitions but also her marital relationship. Offered a lucrative job promotion with undefined compensation, she navigates conflicting advice and high expectations. However, her choice to decline the position erupts into a heated argument with her husband, revealing deeply rooted differences in their philosophies about work and financial security.
OP recalls her journey from financial instability to earning a comfortable salary as a software engineer. Her husband, who is a decade older, works in construction management, and together, they enjoy a stable financial life.
The Promotion Offer
At work, OP’s boss offers her a promotion to a Program Manager position. The catch is that her salary would only be reviewed in the next cycle. Intrigued but cautious, OP decides to seek advice.
The Bar Meeting
OP meets with the current Program Manager and his predecessor for drinks. Both men share how they felt shortchanged by the company, revealing that the promotions did not come with the implied raises. This fuels OP’s skepticism.
OP discusses the promotion offer with her husband, who thinks she should accept it for the sake of her resume. Yet, he seems unaware of the financial implications of the uncertain salary that she had discussed with her colleagues.
The next morning, OP asks her boss for a concrete salary figure for the promotion. He dodges the question, saying it’s up to Human Resources (HR) and will be reviewed later. OP recognizes this as a red flag.
OP finds out that the Program Manager position is generally valued at around $170,000 in the current job market. She realizes that her company’s offer would leave her significantly under-compensated.
OP tells her boss that she appreciates the offer but can’t accept the role without clearly defined compensation terms. Her boss claims his hands are tied, and HR won’t renegotiate until the next quarter.
Upon learning that OP declined the promotion, her husband becomes upset, believing this is a decision they should have made together, and he disagrees with her reasoning. He thinks she should improve her job position in any way she can.
OP argues that she knows her job and the financials better. She insists that taking on more responsibilities without a guaranteed pay raise would be foolish. She doesn’t want to let her company walk all over her.
The Resume Debate
OP’s husband counters, stating that the promotion would be a valuable addition to her resume and open doors to higher-paying management roles whether or not she stays with her current company. OP is not convinced.
OP states that she prefers her current role as an individual contributor and doesn’t aspire to management. This reveals a mismatch between her career goals and her husband’s expectations for her.
All About You
OP’s husband accuses her of being self-centered, saying she’s affecting their financial future by taking the easy way out and not wanting a “hard job.” The tension escalates as OP feels attacked and offended.
Clash of Generations
OP’s husband attributes her reluctance to accept the promotion to her relative youth and job-hopping history, saying she doesn’t understand how promotions work. This adds an age-related tension to the argument.
Old School Vs. New School
OP counters that the traditional approach of working hard for a later reward is outdated and risky. She recounts her experiences from her first two jobs to make her point. She says you must have clear contracts and expectations out front in today’s market because you can’t trust a company to “do right by you” later.
The Naïveté Argument
Her husband calls her naïve and overly idealistic for rejecting the offer. The disagreement reveals a significant divergence in their work philosophies. Neither OP nor her husband seems to understand the other’s viewpoint completely.
OP and her husband have different career progression and financial planning values. This single incident exposes these underlying differences in a stark manner. The couple’s discord over the promotion leaves them at an impasse.
Was The Wife’s Behavior Appropriate?
Frustrated and disappointed in her conversation with her husband, OP posts her story online for validation from the internet community. The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter.
One reader said, “I’m a software engineer, and I would hate being a PM. It’s much more work but also a completely different role. I wouldn’t call it a promotion; it’s a different job.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote, “His reaction is bizarre. You absolutely should not be taking on more responsibility without adequate compensation. Honestly, this is kind of a weird way of doing it. I don’t think it’s even legal in my country.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person stated, “You made the right decision for you. That’s how it works. Even when you’re married, you continue to be an individual with agency and autonomy.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another reader commented, “As another software engineer, going from a software developer to a program manager is not what I would call a promotion. It is a career change. You would be fundamentally changing what your job is.”
What Do You Think?
What are your thoughts on their actions?
What would you have done in this situation?
This story is inspired by a thread from an online forum.