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She Was the Sole Breadwinner

Brenda was doing the breadwinning and child rearing.

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Bringing Home the Bacon

Brenda and Don Bozarth were married for seven years and living in Fairfield, Iowa, when we ran their story in February, 1991. Soft-spoken and easygoing, Don owned a sporting-goods store, and Brenda ran the pharmacy department at a local hospital. But as the economy nose-dived, so did Don’s business — and in short order, their marriage.

Stressed to the max, Brenda resented being the sole breadwinner and caretaker of their son, Dylan, 5. “I never have a minute to myself,” she complained. “I rush home from work, pick up Dylan at the babysitter’s, and make dinner. I’m so frazzled that I wind up yelling at Dylan for every little thing.” She blamed Don for failing at his business and causing her anxiety and worry. Don told us, “I know she’s thinking, Why me, God? Why did I have to marry this loser? Maybe I am a loser. I can’t make my business work; I can’t make my marriage work.” But most upsetting to Don was that he and his wife were no longer close. “Brenda is always working, always nagging and criticizing.” On the verge of divorce, they sought the help of Patricia Kelley, PhD, a clinical social worker in Iowa City. When we caught up with Brenda, now 47, and Don, 50, we discovered much has changed.

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