Oberweis said that one of the problems that ended his first marriage to Elaine Pearson was that she thought he worked too much. He said he didn't want to make that mistake again.There's something incomplete in his story. No warning signs in those 35 years? Or were the emoluments of living the life of a corporate spouse inadequate compensation when what would normally be the beginning of a comfortable retirement turned into the beginnings of a second act, as a political spouse?
“This is something that I have been reluctant to discuss,” he said. “It's very personal. … I was married to my first wife for 35 years, have five kids, and as far as I was concerned, it was a very happy marriage, I was very pleased, and I was stunned about — I don't know — 10-11 years ago when one day she left. My children were equally stunned. I couldn't sleep, I couldn't eat for months. I lost 60 pounds. It was by far the worst thing that has ever happened to me in my life, and I don't want to repeat it.
“Julie and I have been married now about six and a half years, almost seven years, and if I made a mistake — my first wife indicated that one of the things that concerned her was that I worked too much, that I got focused on something and poured all of my time and energy into it and there wasn't enough for her.”
It's encouraging, though, to consider even older people questioning the Industrial Age dispensation in which it was permissible for fathers to be absent as long as the big paychecks kept coming in. Perhaps younger people of both sexes will be more aggressive in seeking a different bundle of labor and leisure from prospective employers. Or perhaps mechanization will offer a way out of the forty hour work week trap.
As far as the primary went, Mr Oberweis will represent the Pachs against Senator Durbin.