While Arielle was home with their two young daughters and Jerry was the sole provider for the family, he felt secure in his position as the husband. When the girls both went to school and Arielle went back to work, things began to change. Arielle was so competent at her job that her skills were soon recognized. She was given more responsibility, promotions and raises. It wasn’t long before she brought in more of the income than Jerry could earn as a public school teacher.
Although Jerry was proud of Arielle’s competence and achievements, as the months went by, he became more and more uneasy. Jerry started working when he was fifteen, to put himself through college because his family didn’t have the financial means to assist him. He has been working continually ever since. A great deal of his sense of self-worth was tied up in his ability to provide for his family. His anxiety about Arielle not needing him any longer grew, even though she never brought attention to the discrepancy in their earning power.