Dear Barb – Fiancée Farm

Dear Barb:

I am in my early thirties and working as a waitress while finishing my degree in social work at AU. My fiancée and I are planning to get married this coming September. I grew up in a large farm family as did my fiancée. I no longer work on the farm, as I wanted to work and live in the city. My fiancée still lives and works on the family farm and It’s expected he will eventually take over the farm. I don’t have a problem with living on a farm as long as I can pursue my own career, but I think my fiancée expects me to be a full time farm wife. I remember watching what my mother went through with the late dinners while dad was out working in the fields, being alone a lot and having to care for the children almost like a single parent and always being late, or not being able to attend events, among other things. I know most of those things are part of the life I am choosing, but I feel at least if I am pursuing something for myself I will be able to handle all these other things. My fiancée and I get along great and I really love him, so I don’t want to rock the boat, so I haven’t come right out and told him that I don’t want to do farming full time, but I have told him that I want to work as a social worker in the city. I don’t really think he is taking me seriously, and just assumes I will be working with him. Since we are getting married soon I don’t want this to become a big issue right now, as we have enough to deal with the wedding arrangements. On the other hand, I don’t want this to become an issue in our marriage either. I just don’t know whether I should bring it up now or wait until after I graduate and deal with it then? Thanks, Nancy.

Hi Nancy:

Thanks for your question and for sharing your story. Obviously you are aware of all That’s involved with being a farm wife, so perhaps your fiancée assumes you are prepared for that life. I understand that you don’t want to rock the boat before the wedding, but I think you should discuss this with your fiancée before you get married. You don’t want to begin your married life with a major misunderstanding like this. If he is expecting you to be a full time farm wife and you are not intending to do that, you both have to discuss this and perhaps come to a compromise. A compromise may entail hiring someone to help with the cooking, household chores and child care while you are both working. If you decide this ahead of time, when the time arrives it won’t be an issue. On the other hand, if you cannot agree to compromise, you may want to postpone your marriage until you can both come to terms with this situation. Either way it is best to resolve this before you get married. Best of luck Nancy!

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