Entrepreneurship is a tough journey. Read about the highs and lows of starting and running a business.

Tuna Fisherman Clashes with Doctor Wife Over Future Plans
Entrepreneurship

Alright, here we go. My wife, Laura (35F), and I, Jack (42M) have been together for 14 years. She’s recently completed her training and has finally become a medical doctor in Anesthesiology—it's been a long nine years of university and residency, but now she’s there, and I’m so proud.

I, on the other hand, am a Tuna fisherman and charter owner—a passion that I transformed into a thriving business. I own licenses and operate two boats which I bought when I was much younger, both fully paid off now. I charter these from mid-July through mid-November, charging $2000 per day for each client, and I'm solidly booked years ahead. Though the income is fantastic, it's really the love for the ocean that drives me. It's been my world since my first fishing trip with my dad at the age of 12.

This isn’t just a job to me, it’s the core of who I am. However, now that Laura’s become a doctor, she’s started pressing me to consider selling the business to focus on starting a family and spending more time at home. This demand struck a chord, especially since my profession means being away from home four months each year. Despite her knowing and accepting this from the start of our relationship, it seems that her perspective shifted after her graduation and new job where she mixes with a different social crowd.

My passion for my work led me to secure a prenuptial agreement to protect my business and properties when we married. Laura was never financially strained through her education or personal living as I covered those expenses. It's not about the money—my complaint stems from her newfound insistence that I quit my beloved job to settle into a more domestic role, an idea that I’m just not comfortable with.

Her new doctor circle might look down on my profession, but it's a dignified one that I love and it's funded our lives and her education. Recently, she even proposed moving from our 120-acre family property into a city condo, which is another point of contention between us. I offered a compromise to perhaps spend winters in a condo but hold onto our land, yet this too fails to satisfy.

We have resources to support childcare during my fishing season, but she’s reluctant to consider outside help. Our visions are colliding, and at this rate, I worry for our marriage. I’ve never considered retirement; I planned to eventually pass my business on to my son from an earlier relationship, continuing the legacy I've built.

If I shared this on a reality show, audiences would likely be split, with some supporting my dedication to my craft and others sympathizing with Laura’s desire for more family time. The drama and raw emotion of our situation might even gain viewer support for each side, based on personal values around career and family.

Am I wrong for wanting to keep my career and lifestyle just as she begins to embrace her own professional identity? Can a marriage survive such fundamental disagreements?

Startup Reboots and Old Partners Demand Profits
Entrepreneurship

Before the pandemic, me and a few of my friends, including Zach and Mia, pooled our savings to launch a food truck business. We were all pretty excited, dropping around $5,000 each to get started. However, just as we were picking up steam, COVID-19 reared its ugly head, and our sales flatlined. Our locality was not into delivery services back then, and we struggled to keep the lights on, metaphorisch speaking.

With heavy hearts, our group—which was quite close-knit back then—convened to weigh our options. In the end, we agreed that selling the food truck, which by then was already decked out with our branding but looking a bit worn, wouldn't fetch us much. We were getting some pretty dismal offers for it, mere pennies on the dollar.

Despite having other jobs, we decided to hold onto the truck. Even though the potential $1,000 to $1,500 each from selling the truck might seem substantial, it wasn't a break-the-bank kind of loss for us given our other income sources. Eventually, a few of our group opted out, disheartened by the flop of what was once a shared dream. Their departure was so poignant; they cut off contact, leaving behind not just the business but our shared pastimes and jokes in our group chat, which went silent.

Fast forward to mid-2022, a subset of the original investors, myself included, decided to reignite the food truck venture. This time around, the dynamics in our area had shifted—people embraced delivery services, and the occasional event boosted our visibility. We approached Zach, Mia, and the other person who'd left, offering them a chance to rejoin. They all passed, having moved on to different things.

Our rebooted venture required minimal additional investment and actually began turning a noticeable profit. We even hired some staff to manage the daily operations as most of us were tied up with our day jobs; one even committed full time to managing our burgeoning business.

Surprisingly, last month, Zach and Mia reached out after years of silence. They demanded a cut of the company's ownership and profits—around 12.5% each—citing their initial investments. This felt unreasonable to us who had persisted through the tough times without their involvement or support. We thought reimbursing their initial $5,000 investment was fair, especially considering they would have pocketed much less had we offloaded the truck when the pandemic struck.

I know some might urge us to check the legalities, but honestly, when we restarted, we only formalized things among those of us actively involved. Neither Zach nor Mia were part of this new legal entity.

Picture if this were a reality show, the tension and drama around this financial dispute could be show-stopping! Conversations could become heated, accusations might fly, and viewers would be at the edge of their seats, wondering if friendships can withstand the strains of money issues. It'd be an emotional rollercoer, playing out in front of a live audience craving real-world conflicts and resolutions.

Given these circumstances, am I being unreasonable here?

Rejecting a Business Offer
Entrepreneurship

Hey!

My buddy and I teamed up for a little venture and it turned out awesome. He’s ace at chitchatting and wheeling-dealing, plus he’s really into the great outdoors. Me? I’m the imaginative type, obsessed with the nitty-gritty and also a bit of a shy one when it comes to crowds. Following our project, my pal floated this great business idea. It’s pretty creativity-heavy, but it also involves a lot of person-to-person interaction and trekking around for supplies. After mulling over it, I chose to pass on the offer because, frankly, I'm not too keen or up for that kind of thing. I shared my reservations in a diplomatic manner, and he got it, though he’s not pursuing the venture solo as he feels short on the creative flare needed. Now there's this twinge of guilt in me. Did I mess up?

Imagine this scenario got aired on a reality show. How would audience react seeing me turn down the business offer? Probably, they’d have mixed feelings. Some might empathize with my need to stay true to my comfort zone, while others might view me as a hindrance to my friend’s entrepreneurial dream.

Am I Wrong for Not Letting My Buddy Change Our Website?
Entrepreneurship

So my buddy and I came up with this idea. Well, it was mostly his idea, and he's more knowledgeable in that field than I am. But since I'm a good coder, he needed me to handle the coding part. I bought the domain, and he was supposed to create the website. I gave him the login details, but weeks went by, and the site was untouched. I thought the idea fizzled out, and we both got busy with our own stuff—he had work, and I was traveling.

Months later, I noticed the domain just sitting there. On a whim, I decided to work on the website and bring the idea to life. After months of effort, the site started gaining traction and making sales.

It now brings in a decent monthly income.

Recently, I told my buddy about it because I wanted to involve him in a campaign with a customer and maybe offer a split of the campaign profits. Now he wants to make changes to the website, adjust prices, and add his knowledge to improve it.

I'm feeling conflicted because I put in a lot of effort and went through trial and error to build the business. He argues that it was his idea and his suggestion to buy the domain, which is true.

Am I wrong for not wanting to go along with his changes?

I offered to create a new site with him where we can implement his ideas on pricing and design, but he's insistent on modifying the current site.

Now, I wonder how people would react if this were happening on a reality show. Would they see me as the bad guy, or would they understand my side of the story?