Having a bit of a jealous issue - and nightmares :(


Active Member
When I met my S/O, he was on seasonal layoff and visiting his sister here (a friend of mine) but technically lived about 6 hours away. he had a great position but he was tired of the level of physical labor and toll it was taking on his body. Then we met, and he decided to stay living here (yay me!). There is no work here in the field he was in, so he needed to change careers. So he moved here, and returned to college to take a machinist course. He graduated with honors, was released early to start a job he was head hunted for with a mining company. He finished his 3 year apprenticeship and became fully licensed. Only to be hit with the massive layoffs in the mining industry this past February due to the economy. It was a permanent lay off.

I can't imagine for a man in his late 30's having to start over AGAIN for a third time. After ALOT of talking, we concentrated on finding something that interested him, challenged him, and would offer some actual security. He cannot go through all of this AGAIN after this one last time. So he applied to the Air Force. He is now back in school for 2 years studying aviation. It is exciting for him. I actually wish he'd followed this dream back when he was much younger. He wanted this for himself all along but got caught up in life and didn't pursue it. So it's his dream career and in spite of the fall backs in all his previous positions, he's finally going the way he wanted to all along.

Please don't get me wrong. I totally support this second return to school in 5 years. I'm very happy his dreams are coming true. And I am proud as all get out. He's a driven man who works hard (even when he loathes his job) and a great role model for my kids, especially difficult child.

Yet, I'm feeling jealous. When we went through him going back to school first time, it was with the understanding that once he graduated and was working again, I would return to University and pursue the degree I never got. It didn't happen. Not his fault, it was finances, getting my MS diagnosis after a years long period of debilitation, etc. But I'm feeling better, and learning how to cope when I'm not feeling well. I was to return to school this fall. Then his lay off. Plans change. Life happens. But again?? I've been putting off what I need for my dreams forever it seems (far before he came into my life). Something just always happens. With him in school for the next 2 years, no way can we afford for me to return to University. When he graduates, we will be posted to a military base about 5 hours south of here for him to do further military training, weapons systems stuff, etc. that will be only for just under a year. Then we'll get a 4 year posting wherever they want to send us. So we are looking at 3-4 years before we settled somewhere.

This puts any chance of me attending school a minimum of 4 years away. But when we post in 2 years for initial posting, difficult child will be remaining here to begin University. No way can we pay for difficult child to attend for 4 years, as well as me. So tack on another 4 years til he graduates. 7-8 years away. By that point, easy child will be a year away from University. Paying for her for 4 years. I'll be what, 45-50? Before I can pay for my schooling??? Umm, I highly doubt it being worthwhile. I can't even work enough years after that to get a proper pension from a job.

So my dreams go poof. On top of that, I'm spoiled. I have had S/O to myself for 5 years. First time he went to school, he breezed through it. His job was 8:30-4:30 Mon-Fri. We had all that time together. His job wasn't a take it home with him kind of job. We have become so used to spending that time together.

This aviation program is brutal. He is constantly needing to study in order to pass. Let alone his need to excel. Already his program since September has lost 12 students who couldn't keep up. More are due to go following a exam this morning. He needs to put that time in to his studies. I respect him for it and want his dreams to come true. Truly.

But i guess I'm jealous. And a bit angry and bitter that I have to remain on the sidelines while I support his dreams, difficult child's dreams, easy child's dreams. Meanwhile, I can't do the type of jobs I could get right now. Not physically. I really needed to study at school and get into something that I could do even if I wind up in a wheelchair. I feel kind of hopeless. I don't have to work. But I NEED to work. I feel so wasted. I feel stagnant and unfulfilled. I feel unchallenged and sad and like I've got to give up dreaming at all.

Last night I had a horrible dream. It was actually stupid, but the focal point was me turning on S/O for all of his studying. For giving up time with him. For being the supportive one while he soars into his world of making his dreams come true. Stupid I know. He's doing this out of necessity. He's doing it for ALL OF US. That it is his dream is beside the point. If something else came up opportunity wise, that he hated but would offer security and a good pay etc, he'd jump on it even if he worked his whole life hating what he does. He's that kind of guy. Where do I get off being resentful or jealous or petty and whining about my desires for myself? I can't believe its even entering into my dreams at night. :(

I don't want to volunteer. I know its all altruistic etc. But i want a pay cheque of my own. I want to climb a ladder. I want to make a name for myself. i want to have a degree on my wall. I can't return to work as a correctional worker which I went to college for. My health won't allow it. If I want to work, am I to flip burgers? Can't even do that with my health (not that I'd want to at my age). UGH!

I know it's time for me to let go of all of this incessant waiting for my turn, it isn't coming. I chose to have my children and one is very soon needing the support to get a post secondary education. Then it will be the other one. I want that for them. Badly. They WILL be given the opportunity and all they need to succeed. I don't know how though. How do I give up something that I waited for and waited for, that was always "just around the corner"? I don't know how. I feel completely sucker punched. I kept waiting to Be what I wanted to Be. And now I have to settle for being what I "AM". But I don't feel I "AM" anything> I feel like I"m merely the person who has been waiting to Be something.

:( :(

No need to even respond, and MAJOR apologies for the length of this. I just really needed to get this out. I know I have to deal with this emotionally. having nightmares like I had last night means that even at rest, this is hurting me. Self torture isn't my style, so I know I have to get with the program. And realize the program is NOT having my dreams come true.


Well-Known Member
I am the age you are dreading. I too basically put off my dreams raising kids but I didnt know what my dreams were to be honest. Now I know what I would like to do but I am too old and disabled to do what I would like to do. It hoovers. Like you said, there arent enough years or money to put into an education to make it worthwhile to go back and get a degree in something that I really would like to do.

I do have an associates degree that I got in my mid twenties but it wouldnt carry over now so I would have to start all over again. It isnt even in the field I would want to go into now. So now I just live vicariously through other things. Its tuff.


Active Member
MM, my gut feeling is that you will have this opportunity, you just need to wait even longer. Try to remind yourself that the economy hoovers right now and we must live in survival mode for a while- at leaast that is what I'm telling myself as I prepare to compeltely start over after losing everything I have worked for the past 20 years. I know it's hard and I don't have a clue how I can possibly get my dreams back or hopes for them being fulfilled, although they might be somewhat different than yours, but I'm trying to have faith that this temporary life of survival is really temporary. I hope you can do the same.


Active Member
Thanks Janet, and K. It does hoover. I want to find a way to be optimistic, but even if the economy picks up, the bottom line is, the kids are next in line. We now have a pretty good idea of what our income will be when S/O completes the aviation program. At that point, when he graduates, difficult child begins University. Right when he finishes, easy child begins. S/O's daughter is highly autistic and will always live with her mom. We will pay support regardless of her age, it is the right thing to do as a father and I wouldn't have it any other way. The more he earns, the more we send. So it won't happen for me. I have to face it. Focus on something different I guess? Just can't imagine anything else that will be something to look forward to with that kind of dream and drive.

I am happy with my life. I don't "have it bad". I have great kids. A wonderful S/O. We will finally have financial and job security. In so many ways we are very blessed. I just have to get over this all, somehow. Preferably soon. Nasty dreams indicate I'm thinking about this even when I think I'm moving forward beyond it :(


Well-Known Member
Well, in my opinion you can always go a class at a time. I did. It took a long time, but I finished - finally! LOL!
You could do some online courses now. Who knows - you might even change your mind at what you want to do a few times before you get into it full time.
You just never know what is around the corner. I think it is best to start pursuing it now. Have something you are striving for and for yourself. Not about someone else.
I think it is important to have your 'own' thing going on.

One class at a time is better than giving up on the dream. in my humble opinion.


Active Member
I'm wondering if you and/or the kids can get any discounts with SO being in the Air Force now? Actually, legislation might change in the next few years about this. Don't give up- I'm a firm believer that "if there is a will, there is a way" it just takes longer than we think sometimes.


Active Member
I agree with Busywend. You could do one class at a time, maybe on line. At least when SO is done with his school, if you do it online, you could start even if you weren't permanently settled in one place.

I also think it would be good to have your own thing and get to feel your own sense of accomplishment.


Roll With It
I know exactly how you feel. When we married I was pregnant and still in college. I took a year off and then finished up my bachelors.

husband wanted to write a book so I worked while he "wrote". But he didn't. Not a word.

Then he got a job and we both worked. Then MY dreams of grad school got shuffled aside because Wiz needed me full time for his therapy and home schooling.

Then my parents offered to pay husband's way through grad school. The understanding was that he would get a job NEAR A GOOD SCHOOL FOR ME TO DO GRAD SCHOOL after he graduated.

He refused to even look for a job that would mean we moved away from this town. I like the town. Really do. But I went to college here and they just are NOT strong in what I want to study. It would cripple my career to do school here.

NOW husband is laid off, job hunting, and has started talking about going back to school. AGAIN.

I really resent that he even had the gall to bring it up to me. Esp when he KNOWS how much I want to do grad school as soon as my health gets straightened out.

I don't have suggestions or solutions, but I can commiserate.

by the way, my husband was over 40 when he was in grad school. It really isn't too late to go back.

Sending hugs to you. Just don't let these feelings fester and spill poison over your relationship.


Well-Known Member
I understand. I've been waiting 22 years to go back for my MBA. I've always wanted to teach at the college level. I couldn't stay in school, because I was broke, and then Miss KT's useless father and I got together, and one of us had to work, and then I was a single parent, and then I figured it would be better to get my credential first, so my hours and Miss KT's would be the same, then Hubby and I got married, and when he was laid off I sent him back to school, and there hasn't been enough money to finance a grad program, and I already have about $45,000 out in student loans from earning my credential 13 years ago.

I'll be 47 in two weeks, and though I believe no knowledge is ever wasted, I wonder how cost effective it will be for me to get that MBA.



Well-Known Member
I just turned 48 and I'm in the middle of earning of a BA and teaching credential. My school is 100% online. I can accelerate, but having a full time job makes it very difficult. So, I'll be 50 before I'll be done. Then, I want to go on to earn my masters. I'll probably be well into my 50s before then. It's NEVER too late!

People are living longer and I believe we will be working longer too.


Well-Known Member
Mattsmom, don't beat yourself up for feeling jealous. It's hard to see your dreams put aside over and over again at the expense of others, even if they're your loved ones. It's only natural that you'd feel resentful, passed over, etc. Your feelings are perfectly justified.

Now, that said, you do have a bit of a dilemma on your hands. I agree that it's never too late, but here are a few thoughts...

1) You and difficult child both start university at the same time, and both of you go part time and work part time. You'd both be able to help finance the school tuition, difficult child would graduate with valuable work experience and life skills.'

2) If it's not feasible for difficult child to hold down a job while going through university, apply the same suggestion to easy child's university.

3) Look into grants for mature students. Not necessarily through the university. There are TONS of scholarships available through private organizations, foundations, etc. Some have bizarre qualifications, but it's worth doing the research to find out if you can have your tuition even partially funded.

4) If you get a job at a university in my neck of the woods, then you and your children are entitled to free tuition. Whether you're a professor, librarian, janitor or what-have-you, the same rule applies. Maybe you can look into jobs at a university either near where you're living now or where you will be posted during S/O's 2 years. Even if you only get free tuition for 2 years, then that means you and at least one of your children don't have to pay, and you can apply the money to the remaining years.

Just tossing some ideas out there. You can find a way to do this.


Wiped Out

Well-Known Member
Staff member
First off hugs to you. I like Trinity's ideas! It really is never too late. My sister is 44 and will just be finishing nursing school in December! She is going to be a fabulous nurse and anyone who hires her will be lucky to have her. Praying you will have the opportunity to reach your dreams.


Active Member
Thank you all. It's a struggle for me to try to figure out a solution here. Canada doesn't have any kind of free tuition program. There is a slight chance we could get some help from the military for easy child and difficult child, but that would be if we were posted overseas or at least to the US from what I've read. I did speak to easy child's father last night. I've not pursued proper support from him for easy child. He and his wife are very successful with several businesses. I asked him to please discuss with his wife what contributions they are going to be making for easy child's education, realistic and honest disclosure about how much they can and WILL be contributing, so that I might plan. Yes its a ways away. But it isnt' cheap either! I don't plan to take him to court over this, although I could without effort or cost to me for legal fees, get proper court ordered support beginning now until she graduates from University. I could also get additional court ordered money for education costs. He can well afford it, so it isn't a problem there. I just can't do court again. It is a PTSD thing. I can't go through it. I know he knows this. I hope he doesn't use that knowledge to wiggle out of things. He did seem responsive so hopefully I'll hear something concrete soon. I do know that whatever pledge he and his wife say they can handle for tuition etc I can count on. If they say it, they'll do it. Crossing fingers. Honestly, if he goes 18 years total without really paying me support, I believe he should fully fund her education. that's my opinion. Its cheaper than what he got away with not paying over the years. No way that will happen, but it would be nice if he'd at least cover all tuition and books and fees, leaving only cost of living.

I have considered online school and doing it class by class for cost purposes. I just don't know that I'd stick with it the same doing it online. I enjoy the classroom environment, the debates, conversations, contacts made, etc. I learn well reading, but I learn best in a classroom environment. Sadly, I'm a perfectionist about school. I worked my butt off when difficult child was a baby. I just "had" to have that 4.0 even though I was working doing research for my advisor, working tutoring upwards of 10 students per semester, and caring alone for difficult child. Its the only thing I am a perfectionist about. I could for sure complete courses online, but I doubt my efforts would be the same as in class, and I know my frustration with myself would make it not enjoyable. I need the in person interaction I suppose. If I could get past that need to excel, that need to enjoy the experience, I could suck it up and just get the degree. I've just waited so long and I want what I want if that makes sense??

difficult child will be going full time. He's not a school person (at all!). I'm just thrilled he's motivated at all to attend school beyond high school. Just a couple years ago, I doubted he'd finish high school (so did he lol). We've talked about full time vs. part time and he is determined to go full time. I don't blame him. He wants to get it done (he sees it as a chore) so he can leave school behind and start working. And I want to see him obtain that degree. He has come so far! And that he wants to attend in spite of loathing school? I really want him focused on just that education. I don't even want him working during school (summers being exception). If he feels overwhelmed, he likely won't complete his program. I'm just proud he wants to go. And I want to give him that opportunity to succeed. We have already agreed he must take out loans for living expenses since he wont' be working. I can't afford to do that. But i have committed to paying his tuition, books etc. I have also committed to helping him keep this apartment. He'll be ready to begin his university program right after S/O, easy child and I will be relocating. he loves where we live right now. So I've committed to helping him furnish the apartment for himself, and to help him find a trustworthy roommate to share expenses. Keeping this place with a roommate will be cheaper than renting in residence or taking a grimy tiny bachelor or one bedroom. I also know the neighbours will be good to him when he's living here on his own. I feel better knowing that his first time on his own he's somewhere familiar with good people, good landlord. So I've got 2 years to save that first year tuition, fees, plus furnish this place for difficult child. He is getting a summer job the next 2 summers and other than a small amount of his pay, he's handing over the rest to me to contribute to costs. (I'm impressed, it was his idea)

Anyhow, I'm babbling, typing thoughts out loud. I still can't see, even with difficult child helping how he can, being able to afford classes. I guess if I can get over the online learning thing, I could slowly creep towards something one class at a time. I just have a sinking feeling about doing it that way. I want to enjoy what I'm doing, ya know? Maybe I'm just being greedy and selfish.


Well-Known Member
Canada doesn't have any kind of free tuition program.

Mattsmom, just to clarify a bit...I'm in Ontario and all of the universities offer free tuition to employees and their children. I don't know if it's possible for someone in your family to get a job at a university, but it may be an option for you.

I know you'll find a way to make your dream happen.