I provide for family with FT job. Good dad; marriage suffers w/my emo baggage. Progress is slow being bootstrapped & with family life. I work in fringes of time. Wife minimally supports me; complains of wasting time. She’s tired & Needs $ validation.

  • This is the main reason why I’m glad that I’m not married and trying to start a company. It’s a long, tough road and I don’t blame a wife for getting irritated at lack of success.

    It’s much easier to go and work for another company and receive a regular salary. That’s why I’m glad that I’m an unmarried guy in his 20s trying to create a company. If I fail, only I get hurt; not a wife and kids. Good luck to you!

  • I come from a family like that. It was hell. That’s why I’m like the above commenter. I won’t get into a risky business while married (traditional conservative ones maybe). My downside? I’m 40 and single 🙁

    • The plus side is also if you succeed, the success will be 100% attributable to you, and not 50/50 wife/husband. This way, if you get married after succeeding, you can get a prenup, so that your money will still be yours and not have half of it belong to your wife, as would be the case if you succeeded while married. It just gives you more options to walk away from a bad marriage and still keep your money.

      Some people might hate me for writing the above, but considering that over half of marriages end in divorce, only a fool would assume that getting married is for life; you have to take into account the possibility that things will go wrong, or that you will lose interest in your spouse after a time.

      • What struck you that the person was a male? 40 and single could just as much be a women.

        I don’t hate you for the statement. I hate you for the stereotype.

        -A Woman Founder

        • You’re right. I assumed he was male, just like people assume that secretaries are female and doctors are male. When I think of the term “startup founder” an image of a guy pops into my head.

          I’ve read that more companies are started by women than men but most of the ones that I read about in the news are ones started by males, so that contributes to my perception.

          Anways, I’m not trying to be sexist; it’s just the world we live in that’s shaped my mindset.

        • It was just ONE word that the commenter got wrong –“wife” — everything else was interchangeable.

          If you can’t stand that type of error and have such a thin skin, then I suggest you do get the heck out of entrepreneurship, get married if you still can, and get a regular job.

        • Dear Woman Founder — Um, he says he is a “good dad” and that he has a “wife.” that’s why the first commenter “assumed” he was a he. Calm down and stop hating!

  • Went through this. Everyday you must remind yourself that you must decide to be happy. Your business and lack of progress is bringing you down, but by being down you will not be productive or creative. Decide to be happy – work on that component – and find the energy to move forward. The rest will fall into place.

  • Ask if she wants to participate more in the startup decisions. If so she will provide you a second opinion and also understand better your chances of success. But if she’s not interested, it’s gonna be tough.

  • Been there, done that! My wife had a limit on supporting me and my entrepreneurial efforts and it wore me down. I’m a creator by nature…therefore i can not stop being me. I tried and i was so unhappy it wasn’t funny…one day i woke up and realized that she would be happy with a 9a-5p type guy and u would never fit that mold…so i asked for a divorce. Now, my decision are mine and i don’t have to justify or compromise with anyone. It was painful at first, but worth my sanity and discovery of my personal happiness! Oh and she’s happier too. Win-win!

    • Supposedly Walt Disney’s wife felt like he was wasting his time making cartoons but he believed differently. History proved him right. Sometimes you just gotta pursue your dreams. Even if you fail, at least you will have put forth the effort, rather than wondering for the rest of your life if you could have made it.

  • I’m in your same situation with wife and kids who bear with me and my need for creative space to work on my startup. My wife can get very frustrated by it. One arrangement that she often mentions is to calendar the time I spend at nights working on my “stuff,” as I call it. She also likes when I drop everything to watch a movie with her or get a babysitter and go out often. Sometimes I win and can have my laptop out during the movie. I would never recommend divorce or separation. Marriage is a give and take. Try to give a little more and ask that she give the gift of time to you in return.

  • First of all; you can do it and not give up on your marriage, kids, or health. You will have to give up most of your social life, TV, and some sleep but don’t listen to those that say it’s your way or the highway with your marriage. Don’t ever forget that your kids will be much better off in life if you’re marriage is happy and healthy.

    Here are some tips;

    1) Have a serious financial talk with your spouse and get buy-in to save enough so you have personal runway to leave your job. The time issue is really secondary to having that $ runway.

    2) Start slacking at your day job and pick up those daytime hours for your startup. I was at a big corp for 8 years and gave it much more than the 40/week they paid me for. I spent the next 2 years incubating my startup on the side and cutting into my day job as payback. I still got my job done, but wasn’t going ‘above and beyond’ since I knew my time there was coming to an end. Is this cool–no, but it ‘s real world.

    3) Assess ALL financial options before jumping ship. Feel out friends and family, crowdfunding, banks (yes–they still lend money if you have assets), grants, etc. Don’t buy the hype you need Angels/VCs.

    Above all else; answer what matters most to you–what do I want to look back on when I’m old as my legacy? A great company, fat bank account, or a happy family?

    I hope you said all 3.

  • Thank you for all of your comments!

    I do hope to have all 3: my company, loads of money, and a good family life! I think it’s possible.

    Patience has been key for everyone… A killer idea + some initial traction in the form of about 50 book sales has been helpful.

    My wife mentioned that she wants to see us making good money from hardware, and now that I have our 1st prototype, hopefully she is feeling a little more reassured this isn’t a fantasy (like so many of my previous ideas).

    I have also been getting traction from some large customers / grant organizations and that is also helping with credibility.

    I also like the idea of trying to give more… Perhaps making a better effort on babysitting and date nights or taking initiative on family activities that I can ask for more time for my business.

    Again, thanks for sharing!

  • After a similar experience launching my first startup, I started my second startup to help , “Married with Kids Entrepreuners” with day jobs launch startups. You can check it here: http://www.vaayoo.com . Basically, we act as a CTO department for new startup. We implement and launch products for them based on the entrepreuners vision.

    The best part, we take on all the risks. The entrepreuner pays a small monthly subscription fee, when the product is launched. If the product works , the entrepreuner can dive in and quit his full time job. We are agile, so we upgrade products frequently. This allows entrepreuners to tweak their offering and make it successful. All this in monthly subscription payment.

    If the product does not work, even after iterating, the entrepreuner just calls us and stops paying monthly fees. He moves onto the next thing or continues with his day job.

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