Are you concerned that you’re spotting signs your husband is jealous of your success and career?
It’s not uncommon for men to feel inadequate, insecure, and inferior when they’re not the main breadwinners and they’re watching their wives’ careers take off.
This can quickly turn to jealousy, which is one of the most destructive and damaging emotions that can rear its head in a relationship.
From anxiety, rejection, and resentment, to actively being negative towards you and being bitter about your success – it can get ugly.
It’s really hurtful because a supportive partner should be celebrating your success and encouraging you to do better, not fighting against you and making your personal and professional goals more challenging.
What should you do if your husband is jealous of your success?
You need to have a crisis talk and get the elephant out of the room before it gets worse, that’s for sure.
First of all, you need to be sure he is, in fact, jealous.
Here are some of the most common signs to pay attention to that will help confirm whether or not your husband is jealous of your career and how successful you are:
8 Signs Your Husband Is Jealous of Your Success
He Discourages Your Career
If there’s something more demotivating than having a partner who does not support what you’re doing, it’s having a partner who actively tries to discourage what you’re doing.
Jealous partners often say things like, “you’re wasting your time”, “you can’t do this”, “you’re too old”, anything to try and put doubts in your mind.
This is them portraying their own insecurities onto you – you have to ignore them, or even use this as fuel to make you push harder.
He Does Small Things to Sabotage Your Career
Going one step further from discouraging you is actively trying to sabotage your success.
Sabotage comes in many forms, some more subtle than others. From little digs at you to break your confidence to messing with your emails and spreading rumors, I’ve seen it all.
If you think your husband is taking steps to sabotage your career, this is a huge red flag.
He Makes You Feel Guilty
Another psychological technique a lot of guys use when they’re jealous of their partner’s success is to try and make them feel guilty for being successful.
There is a long list of ways they can do this, and many will relate to your individual circumstances and how they can best manipulate you.
Some of the common ways guys try to make their partners feel guilty are to say they are spending too much time working and not enough time with their family.
As well as pointing out sacrifices you may have had to make, or saying you’re putting too much on them to do around the home, etc.
He Doesn’t Want to Hear About Your Work
When someone is jealous of someone else, it is often hard for them to hear details about how well it’s going.
This is because they feel insecure, inadequate, and/or intimidated by how well you’re doing and it cuts them to compare your success with theirs.
If your husband never asks about how your day went, changes the conversation, or looks disinterested when you talk about work, or just flat out if he’s not interested – it’s a strong indication that he’s jealous.
He Makes Sarcastic Comments
Often referred to as the lowest form of wit, sarcasm is a way a lot of people deal with their own feelings of inadequacy or jealousy.
It’s really frustrating to deal with. The constant comments, mockery, and use of irony are a way of avoiding the reality your husband is facing.
He’s Spending More Time With the Wrong People
If you’re working hard on progressing your career, it helps to surround yourself with like-minded people with similar goals and aspirations.
Not only is having a husband with different – or a complete lack of – goals challenging, but if they’re hanging around with other like-minded people it can be a drag.
Not sharing a circle of friends is always difficult for couples. When your husband’s friends also share his negative attitude towards your success it can be a huge drag.
He’s Being Passive Aggressive
Passive-aggressive behavior is incredibly toxic and will often manifest as a result of being jealous.
If your partner isn’t able to speak openly and honestly with you, they may start being passive-aggressive towards you.
Common signs of passive-aggressive behavior include being irritable, constantly disagreeing with you, being stubborn, acting hostile, and refusing to help you.
He’s Condescending or Patronizing
If your husband is jealous of your success and feels inferior to you, he may react by being condescending or patronizing and acting like he is above you.
Condescending behavior is a way people try to put others down to mask their own insecurities. The intention is to make you feel bad about who you are and what you’re doing, and your job is to not let it.
How Do You Tell If Your Husband Is Jealous of You?
I covered a number of the most common signs and behaviors above for you to look out for that your husband is jealous of you.
A lot of them are ambiguous, however, and you don’t want to jump to conclusions and accuse them of being jealous if they’re not.
The only way to really be sure that he is jealous is to pay close attention to how he is behaving over time, test him with different scenarios, and ultimately you need to talk to him about it.
It’s no way to live, having a partner that is jealous of your success. Not only is it frustrating, difficult, and awkward, his negativity is going to have a negative impact on your career.
Can My Husband Be Jealous of My Success?
Your husband may well be jealous of your success, yes. In fact, it’s really not that uncommon.
It’s normal for a little healthy competition within a relationship, and this can easily spiral into one partner feeling inadequate if they’re slipping further and further behind the other.
Being jealous of success is something that affects men more than women, too. There are too many men that still have that macho pride and the mindset that they should be by the main providers.
If you’re saying all of the signs that your husband is jealous, don’t ignore it. You need to speak to him about it and get it out in the open for the good of your relationship, and your career.
Is It Normal to Be Jealous of Your Partner’s Success?
It’s not normal to be jealous of a partner’s success, but it’s certainly a lot more common than it should be.
I put this down in part to the general culture of the competitive working environment, and the inequality that still exists in and out of the workplace.
Reasoning aside, the biggest problem I see with most people is recognizing the signs and doing something about it.
Jealousy in a relationship is one of the most toxic and damaging behaviors, and if not properly addressed it will cause some serious decay to your personal and professional relationships.
Image credits – Photo by Keren Levand on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.