Should I Feel Guilty About This?
I'm a person who deals with a lot of guilt. I grew up in house where Everything was always my fault, so it comes very naturally to me. Lately this issue has weighed on me big time. Should I feel guilty or not?
During the course of my 15-year-marriage I would describe myself as the more ambitious of the two. I had a lot of big dreams and I should have spent more time on my relationship than my career, but I didn't.
My ex-husband has been in a profession that has resulted in a lot of inconsistent, commission based income. I struggled with it a lot. I'm the type that needs to be able to budget and count on that paycheck coming in every two weeks.
Long story short, I ended up significantly contributing to our income during our marriage. In being completely transparent, I developed some pride over this and some bitterness. I originally imagined myself as a stay-at-home Mom with a little side hustle of my choosing. Instead, I've been working my butt off my entire adult life. I've gained a lot from the experience, it just wasn't what I planned.
After my divorce we have both struggled financially, but I think overall I struggle less than he does. This is where the tremendous amount of guilt comes in. I feel guilty that I took my income away from him and his lifestyle. I live in roughly the same caliber of house we did when we were married. I still take the kids on vacations and drive the same car I did pre-divorce. He's now a renter and right now needs a major car repair I know he can't afford. I feel awful. I know we would be in a much better financial position had we stayed married. He doesn't pay me alimony or child support and I don't pay him anything either. All we do is split the kids extra-curricular activities. When he struggles to keep them involved in sports and school expenses, again the guilt settles in.
I brought this up to my "Secret Boyfriend" and he said I shouldn't ever feel guilty because he's the man and it's his job to at least support himself. I feel like my ex thought I would contribute to our lifestyle forever and I didn't end up doing that.
Should I feel guilty or am I being too hard on myself?