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My wife is making my gig life miserable...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by pbass6811, Mar 18, 2017.

  1. pbass6811


    Nov 10, 2008
    Indy, IN
    Not sure where this should be posted, here or bass humor, but feel free to move or delete as necessary...

    Let me start off by saying that my wife is my hero. She is the primary reason that my son and I manage to exist and not walk out of the house every day looking like we got dressed in total darkness. She works full-time AND is finishing up getting her administrator's license. She is the true definition of a strong woman. I love her with all my heart and I can't imagine life without her.

    Having said that...

    We can't seem to get thru a gig without having some sort drama between us. This has been going on since we started dating. When I was single, I got way more than my fair share. Since we've been together, I have no interest in betraying her trust, but that doesn't stop her from accusing any chick that farts in my general direction of being a trolling hooch. She complains that she has to "talk to all these people that I don't know ". She complains when she thinks I've consumed too many shots, even though SHE is the one who seems to go overboard when she imbibes(which isn't very often). I got read the riot act last night because I said "I told you" to one her friends that got played by a guy I told her was going to play her.

    I'm really starting to get frustrated with this situation. I don't ever want to tell my wife she can't come to gigs, but I'm not enjoying waiting for the drama to unfold at every show.

    Just not sure how to handle this, so I figured I'd ask you guys and gals. Have ya' been in this spot and what did you do?
    saltymonkey, hieronymous and jebmd like this.
  2. lokikallas


    Aug 15, 2010
    los angeles
    Wow, I have to beg my wife to come to my gigs, and that's just so I can have her record us lol. My wife would merely be amused by any girls giving me attention, and I'm lucky if she hangs out past 10. Who can blame her, she's seen me gig 100 times already, it must get boring after a while. Sounds like your wife has some issues with control. My wife isn't perfect, but she knows that after a gig, I'm generally in a good mood, so she supports me. If she was coming to every show and she had a flair for the dramatic, I'd be pretty annoyed.
    Mele, aborgman, SWRnut and 19 others like this.
  3. Jloch86


    Aug 1, 2016
    New Jersey
    My honest opinion is that it's too late and you just have to deal with it now. This is the kind of thing you have to nip in the bud EARLY on in the relationship. You can't "gradually" regain the upper hand.

    You could try firing off a valiant salvo and hope she's receptive, but chances are she'll just resent it and grow even more suspicious.

    Stay strong, my friend.
    jbasedig, RiZzBot, Ox Boris and 28 others like this.
  4. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    After 45 years gigging:

    There is nothing anyone can say that will ever sooth the ruffled feathers on the jealous and insecure band wife (or husband)

    Like it, lump it, leave it. You wont change it and sooner or later, your decision will be forced on you.

    I'm sorry but I've seen that particular leopard more times than I care to remember and it has never once changed it's spots.
  5. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    ^ Absolutely. You'll end up out of gigging or without Oko. Having a kid you're pretty much forked either way...
  6. TrevorOfDoom


    Jun 17, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Could be trust issues. That's a conversation worth having.
    Could be jealousy. That you get to go out and "have fun" while she busts her ass, or maybe she feels like she needs more attention than you give her.
    That's a conversation worth having.

    I'd talk to her, ask her if she feels like you're meeting her needs.
    While it sounds like that's opening a YUGE can of worms, it's usually not. Hopefully it will be productive.

    Good luck.
  7. 1st Bass

    1st Bass

    May 26, 2005
    Forest Grove, OR
    You are asking the wrong people! You need to sit down and talk this out with your wife. She is obviously uncomfortable with the whole experience at some level. Perhaps she can be made to understand that her discomfort and drama is making the gigs not worth doing (or are they?)...and, as a grown-up, she can change her behavior.

    (It could be worse...I love sailing, but my wife gets sick standing on the dock...for real. So boating is no simply longer one of my activities. I do not want anything that she can't enjoy. She can't change that, and besides, she is afraid of the water, as a non-swimmer, so...what's the point?)

    Talk to your wife.
  8. Yep. You have a strong woman, but that also means she doesn't want to share you with being a musician. It's a control issue, and she doesn't like that you continue to play. The drama she brings at the gigs is just her way of making it miserable for you. If she doesn't act this way in other circumstances, then I nailed it.

    You need to decide whether you want to play in a band and deal with the drama, quit playing, or get a divorce. Those are your options.

    I went through the same thing in my past. At first everything was cool, and playing in a cover band was a good second income we used to buy fun stuff and travel. I played at least every other weekend. Then all of a sudden, she gets defensive, saying the girls are causing issues, blah blah blah, that in never had enough time (I worked two jobs to support her she stayed home with the kids) and that I spent too much time playing music. Excuse me? This isn't something I just decided to do one day, and it's been a part of my life always. I explained it was our fun money ( I shared it with her) and I played only half the month so we could spend time together. This argument always morphed into something else, until we finally got to the core of the problem, which was she didn't want to share me with my other love, which was music. It was a control issue.

    she was bipolar, and after she quit taking her Meds, it would get pretty ugly when she was cycling. Long story cut short, we are not together any longer, with a big part being that I didn't quit playing, which related into her not being able to control me.

    These days I have a pretty good woman, and she gives me the space I need to be myself. And these days I don't play as much anymore, but she respects me enough to be me, and I do the same for her.

    So I wish you the best of luck, but you have some hard decisions to make. She has drawn her line in the sand. You have to decide whether you want to live under her law or not. I doubt she will budge from her stance.
  9. theduke1

    theduke1 Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Manitowoc WI
    There are two (2) kinds of women in this world, those who understand and get us as musicians and those who don't. I am extremely lucky to be married to a lady who gets me heck she even played keys in my band for 5 years.
    She makes me a better musician because she gets it.
    I don't think from what the OP stated he has that and for that I am truly sorry for him, but it most likely will not change at this point.
    Best of luck
    Jimmy4string, bhernco and Wavy like this.
  10. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    Insecurity can be a huge problem in relationships. I, personally, could not deal with this issue. I would sit her down and let her know how her behavior is affecting your good time and the relationship. Ban her from gigs. She's got to grow up!
    Ryan L., Mr_O'B, Lex P. and 3 others like this.
  11. Joedog


    Jan 28, 2010
    Pensacola FL
    Seen it more times than I can count. I've seen bands break up over the same issue. Wish I had an easy answer for you. You say she is strong, but sounds somewhat insecure. My wife has been coming to gigs for decades, and chuckles when I get some female attention. She knows that I am totally committed to HER, and trusts me totally (with good reason)! Hope you can help her see the light!
  12. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    I...have no advice to offer.

    Accept my condolences.

    Good luck.
  13. jchrisk1


    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    You've heard the expression, being in a band is like being in a marriage?
    So is is being in a marriage. If you don't talk about it, it won't go away. It's not going to take care of itself.
  14. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    One thing I've learned from 45+ years of playing live music is that significant others
    just get in the way of making music no matter what your level of achievement may be.
    Girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, doesn't matter. They just get in the way. There are more than enough examples so listing them is pointless. If you want your freedom then be free. Otherwise compromise and coexist in peace. You simply cannot expect others to share your passion no matter what the passion is.
    MEKer, btmpancake, Deak and 3 others like this.
  15. Hmmnnn....

    I'm divorced -- loved her with my entire heart. Much of the things you described were more subdued. I would have quit playing if it could have saved the family... the discussion was had way too late to pedal backwards.

    Now.. that being said... my girlfriend totally takes it in stride. Like prior posters have said.. she's only known me to play packed trendy bars packed with 21 year old girls.

    The difference was that my ex and I met while I was in a gig-lull... as the gigging life flowered, I don't think she understood the difference between a stage life and personal life.

    Opinion.. if you want to keep your family together, it's time to quit.
  16. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    Find a new, er, gig?
  17. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I've a feeling I'm about to say some things you won't want to hear...

    1. Alcohol is a major contributor to this kind of BS. Worth examining, and if ya can't, or refuse to try doing shows without drinking (both you and your wife), then it's even more worth checking into.

    2. Couples counseling can really help iron things out, provided both people are open minded, willing, and really want things to work out.

    I know some people are generally insecure people, but more often than not even the most insecure people will only really get going with that when given reason to be insecure. It could be a past incident that was never completely resolved, or subtle messages that the insecure person is being given. Can't tell you how many people I've seen who act insecure in relationships, and have truly just cause to be acting insecure. Lots of people flirt without even being aware of it. Doing that in front of a partner, even on a subtle unconscious level can easily raise insecurities, and keep them alive. A therapist can help with things like that, as well as help with communicating and understanding each others feelings and intent. I believe trust can always be built upon, provided the two people can really be trusted. If they can't, then that's a whole nuther issue. Can you be trusted?

    Early on in my relationship with my wife, she said something that floored me and changed our relationship forever. We were having some ridiculous spat over something I don't remember and she asked, "What are you doing !?!?!?" I kept going on about whatever it was, and she said, "Joe, I'm on your side. We're on the same team, stop acting like we're not."

    May not seem profound in my rephrasing of it, but it was a game changer. I always try to remember that we're on the same team.
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2017
  18. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    This. Stop drinking on the job and things should improve considerably. Definitely stop bringing a drunk wife or girlfriend to work.
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  19. RED J

    RED J Lol

    Jan 23, 2000
    I had a girl friend like that long ago. I couldn't get out of town to gig on weekends without her putting me through a gauntlet of needless drama that left me like a short fused powder keg. She had zero reason other than possessiveness, for the drama.
    When she got to come with me, she was the flirt, not me. I think you can do the math on why she was possessive of me, she thought I was like her.

    My wife, on the other hand, was happy to have the quiet time alone when I used to gig.

    This is an age old conflict.
    GlennRH, The Deep End, Mr_O'B and 2 others like this.
  20. And I

    And I

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    Might be best if she just doesn't come to the bar gigs. Not like you can really hang out with her while you're working...