How Do I Quit My Job When My Boss Is My (Abusive) Husband?
I have never seen this situation addressed and hope to get some badly needed advice. My backstory: I am a 62 y/o female, college educated, married 37 years and have one child (a 23 year old adult son who no longer lives at home).
I worked in the private and governmental sectors for 20 years and, in the last 20 years, I have been a self-employed business owner along with my husband on our family farm.
From the beginning of our relationship, there were red flags which I guess you could say I chose to ignore due to immaturity, inexperience and, sadly, several serious life events that took place just prior to our meeting.
It only took me 30+ years to have a "light bulb" moment and discover that there was a name for everything that had occurred in our relationship over the years and was/is still happening (verbal, emotional and sometimes physical abuse).
Mid-way through our marriage, I quit my day job to work full-time for our business and have been responsible for its day to day operation ever since (ranging from farm labor to management decisions and everything in between). I think I'm very good at what I do but I get very little joy and fulfillment from it and would like to do something else before it's too late.
It's an understatement to say working for my husband is difficult -- I am the batting board and the one to blame for things that go wrong. If I do get a compliment, it will inevitably be offset with an insult, scolding or criticism and often in front of our employees.
If I do what I'm told to do and act like an employee, then my boss (husband) is fine for the time being. On other days, I am expected to act like the owner, "grow a set" (his words, not mine) and make a decision. It's so confusing!
There is no separation of personal and business life which further complicates things and it creates a double whammy since his behavior in our personal life is the same as in business. I know in my heart that I can't quit my "job" and still be able to stay in my marriage because there would be consequences and I just don't have the energy to live that way.
If I do leave, my problem (as misguided as this might be) is that I don't want to be the one responsible for bringing the business down. I don't even mind if my husband continues with the business, I just don't want to be part of it anymore.
I think everyone can be replaced, but I know what I do for our business comes from years of experience which you can't typically just hire someone for. I really don't know what to do or how to separate myself from this. Any advice would be sincerely appreciated because, right or wrong, this has been a real sticking point for me and it keeps me from being able to move on.