Wife of startup CEO

My husband is incredible and I support his venture 110%. I know he is struggling with so much pressure and feeling alone and the load of every thing is on him. What is the best way for me to support him without going through the roller coaster of starting a tech co?

  • Listen to him. Rub his shoulders. Hold him at night. Make sure he eats and feels loved. Offer to send emails or make sales calls for 4 hours a week. Do the grocery shopping, errands – CEO the home life. Take him on surprise vacations to get away on the weekends every couple months. I know this would make my life 1,000% better.

  • Great answer. I’ll add to that. Remind him often that he’s smart, brave & you’re there for him & believe in his project as much as he does. Make him maintain a healthy routine where he detaches daily like with workouts, walks, play a sport, something.

  • Make him a sandwich 🙂

    Well ok, you can do some tasks like the others suggested, like at home doing groceries.

    You can also help him in his business by being his PA (personal assistant), you could send mails/emails, take phone calls, manage his schedule and other tasks depending on the business.

  • Some pretty sexist responses here. No wonder there’s such a bro culture problem in tech.

    The best things when I was in a relationship was having a partner I could talk to and have fun with. The worst was when I let her down (which wasn’t that often) because of a disaster at work and had to deal with her getting pissed at me for having to cancel dinner or something like that.

    Anything positive you do gets undone when you don’t have their back when the shit hits the fan. You loose their trust. So the best thing you can do is make it clear you’ve got them no matter what happens.

    That being said don’t let him make the company more important than you, detaching and spending quality time with you will make the company better anyway.

    • I wrote the first response and I’m a woman. I wasn’t kidding when I said it would make everything better for me. So stuff it with the sexiest crap! It’s hard building a business and after a hard day, you want someone to hold you. The only reason we assume this would not be a man’s place is because we assume women don’t have the same needs.

    • I understand your answer. I am a male founder and have stayed away from having a serious relationship for 5+ years because I did not think it was fair that I would HAVE to pick the business over my relationship – at this point in time. It was not that I ever viewed the business as being more important than the relationship – quite the opposite – I know and have always known that people, love and relationships are WAY more important. And the idea of always having to cancel dinner – I find the idea that you don’t let your partner down that often astonishing – as unless you are venture backed and are essentially working for someone and can set your reasonable hours – (I am bootstrapped and have no such luxury) – I would HAVE to pick the business over her.

      So having said that I stayed away building a serious relationship. I have even prevented early relationships from getting serious by putting the brakes on, etc. and stopping it from going too far. I realize now – this was a mistake. It was sexist of me – or wrong of me to decide for someone else how much sacrifice they would also be willing to do to build a future together – both in the business and the relationship together.

      Essentially this is the crux of the OP’s question. Her partner might be the one in the trenches of the business everyday – but that does not diminish her contribution whatsoever.

      I am now in a serious relationship with a professional hardworking woman who values her career very much. I cringe at the thought that she may put such aspirations aside for whatever my needs are. I therefore, try to shelter her and do not ask for very much at all and also continually try and support her ambitions and desires and challenges as they may arise. This is what a partnership is.

      I find that she is an INCREDIBLE source of support. While she is also engaged in her career she also recognizes that her’s has a built in support system and is less risky… i.e. she is not alone – she has co-workers, etc. but that I really am. While the suggestions might be sexist they are bang-on. I will ask my partner to read my response later and comment as well. Good luck to you and your partner OP – is not often that you find two people willing to work on a goal together break up the tasks and fight the good fight together. Starting a business is one of the hardest things any one can every do (perhaps other than raising a child). To do so together with love and support only makes it worth doing.

    • Omg in your eye it’s sexist if a woman takes care of her man?

      Please go back to your cats and tell them how evil the “bro world” is you douche.

      You are using the sexist card just to proliferate yourself? you suck.

      I’m a woman btw and also wrote a comment.

  • Firstly let me start by saying this is so thoughtful of you, your husband is a lucky man.

    As a guy who worked 18+ hours a day every day for the first 2 years in my start-up, it was nice to have reassurance from my and just to know I didn’t need to take on extra stress related to the “home” stuff. Perhaps more important for me to have someone to talk to about things that are NOT work (or occasionally to vent about work), being a startup CEO can be a lonely place… to sum it up I would say just be there to listen.

  • Surprise blow jobs, take it up the butt every now and then, bring in a 2nd or 3rd girl, sit on his face every now and then. 😉

  • I’m a solo founder and married too. MY WIFE HAS BEEN THE #1 key thing to my success. Through a 1-1/2yrs of us living on her salary while I worked full time on my start up she has NEVER stopped supporting me, believing in me and trusting me.

    I never showed it when I was feeling depressed and overwhelmed and second guessing myself but she could tell, and she simply kept believing in me 1000%. I made sure to give her weekly status updates on where exactly I was at.

    we’d sit down monthly and go over our family budget and at this time we would both calmly express any concerns we may have that month. But she never questioned me for following my dream of starting this company so that I can set us as a family up for the rest of lives.

    She was my #1 cheerleader and support.

    She always made sure that she was my wife and my teammate and never a nagging negative parent.

    Just allow yourself to believe in and trust your husband 100% and have weekly or monthly progress meetings! Wives are the most important key to a married founders success!

  • I am the wife of a startup co-founder and the best thing I can do for him is be his emotional support and his sounding board. I used to work for the startup, but I have grown to despise his partner, so I quit. It’s tough. We’ve spent tens of thousands of dollars of our own money, the business is set to run out of money before launch and our savings is at near zero. At this point, if the launch ever actually occurs, it’s success would be a black swan. There is honestly no way to avoid the roller coaster of starting a tech company.

  • Do ALL but don’t get a job at his startup in order to spend more time with him. I witnessed this kind of thing, and it was just awful for the employees who had to kiss CEO’s wife ass in order to get things approved from him. So so sick…

  • Take care of yourself and your own life, business and personal, so that your family is not only dependent on the success of his startup. This way his preassure is a tiny bit smaller.

    Then, be there for him, good days and bad, listening and not trying to advise and make it better. He will figure it out, but it is just great if there is one relationship in the world where he does not need to pretend he has all the answers to all challenges every second of the day.

    He is lucky to have you. He must be doing many other things right, as well.

    a female founder

  • I tried 2 startups and failed. Now I’m on my third. Being married, male, 45+, two kids, different ethnicity and a little bit of an introvert. It’s tough as hell. I can’t say the marriage hasn’t suffered and its rosy. Its been a grind. She is carrying the financial burden, I’m being the drain. Like a baby .. a startup has no cookie cutter formula. Each has his own path to take and it will be tough. I see arguments here.. all like the blind men and the elephant. All i can say is stay strong and keep communicating and be positive.

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