In the throes of navigating her rising career, a software engineer, the Original Poster (OP), faces a promotion offer that may not be as lucrative as it seems. As OP grapples with this dubious opportunity, her decision sparks an unexpected conflict with her husband over their shared financial future.
The Software Engineer’s Reality
OP is a software engineer, finally escaping her impoverished upbringing due to her $120k income. Her husband, a construction manager, earns slightly less. They enjoy a comfortable lifestyle, free from the worry of basic needs.
A Promotion Without Promise
OP’s boss offers her a Program Manager position but doesn’t provide details about the corresponding salary. Intrigued but cautious, she consults colleagues who held the position previously. They warn her of broken promises regarding salary increases.
A Partner’s Perspective
That night, OP shares the promotion proposal with her husband. Despite the questionable salary prospects, he urges her to accept for the sake of enhancing her resume.
Undeterred, OP confronts her boss the next day, requesting clarity on the salary. The boss refers her to HR and their review cycle. This triggers suspicion in OP, as the position’s market value significantly exceeds her current salary.
The Courage to Decline
OP refuses the promotion, stating her need for more explicit employment terms. Her boss pleads helplessness, citing HR’s restrictive policies. This leaves OP concerned about her career growth within the company.
A Surprising Standoff
When OP relays her decision to her husband, he reacts with anger. He feels left out of the decision and accuses her of selfishness. This instigates their first significant marital disagreement.
Defense Against Disapproval
In response, OP reasons that the company’s finances are precarious, and she refuses to double her workload without appropriate compensation. The husband counters, suggesting the managerial role could boost her resume and future negotiations.
Clash of Career Views
OP counters her husband’s argument, expressing contentment with her current individual contributor role and disinterest in management. Her husband interprets this as self-centeredness, criticizing her for impacting their joint financial future. The tension escalates.
New Conflict Emerges
In the midst of their heated discussion, a new conflict arises. OP’s boss contacts her again, pressuring her to reconsider her decision. Despite the external pressure, OP stands by her decision. Her husband, however, remains discontented and insists that she should reconsider. The rift between them deepens.
Generational Job Joust
Her husband labels her as naive and accuses her of job-hopping, arguing that salary reviews after increased responsibilities are a normal process. OP responds, describing this thinking as old-school, and emphasizes her past experience of being taken advantage of.
Unbeknownst to OP, her husband takes her refusal of the promotion as a refusal to share in the collective growth of their financial future. His anger over her decision exposes a deep-seated belief: career progress should always be pursued, regardless of personal preferences.
The Art of the Idealist
Despite her husband’s disapproval, OP stands her ground. She firmly believes that she should not have to work harder for a promise of future compensation. This is a fundamental principle she won’t compromise on.
The Dynamics of Disagreement
Their disagreement takes a toll on their relationship. Instead of supporting each other’s decisions, they find themselves at odds. OP questions if her decision, aimed at self-preservation, makes her the antagonist in their marriage.
The Unanticipated Outcome
While the promotion saga was turned down, the experience left a lasting impact on the couple’s relationship. They emerge with wounds, but still together, understanding the importance of communication and mutual respect. In the end, OP may have declined a promotion, but she and her husband have undoubtedly worked through a challenging difference of opinion.
Was The Couple’s Behavior Appropriate?
The readers in the forum had a lot of mixed views on the matter. Here are some of their responses:
One reader said, “You can discuss your career with your husband, but ultimately, that decision is on you. And honestly, I bet if your workload doubled and you were stressed, he’d be unsympathetic. Hopefully, he’s not usually like this.”
Another Commenter Thinks
Another responder wrote: “I’m a software engineer, and I would hate being a PM. It’s much more work, but it also is a completely different role. I wouldn’t call it a promotion; it’s a different job.”
A Third View on The Story
A different person states, “What’s important is that he doesn’t get to make the decision for you. The decision is yours and yours alone. He should accept your decisions within reason, and this decision couldn’t be more reasonable.”
A Final Perspective on the Matter
Another viewpoint on the story: “You did your homework on this position. You knew the job itself didn’t appeal to you and was unlikely to ever include a financial reward to justify the change.”
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 Reddit thread.
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