The Other Co-Founder - Your Family

It's Valentines Day. Time to step back from working 24/7 and make sure your loved ones are still in love with you. That's a joke, but there's some truth in there too.

I spent some time with a founder/CEO yesterday who is doing a remarkable job building a really important company that is growing as fast as any company I've worked with. We talked about the sacrifices an entrepreneur makes and its toll. He said that his wife and kids are hugely supportive but not particularly engaged in his work. I think that's pretty typical of what I see out there.

But just because your spouse (wife or husband) and your kids are not that engaged in your startup doesn't mean that they aren't also making a huge investment in it. They see less of you than they would like and when they are with you, its likely that you are at least somewhat distracted by your current obsession. I don't start companies but I'm guilty of this behavior too. I can only imagine what it is like when you are "all in" on one thing and one thing only.

There are benefits a family gets from a parent who is an entrepreneur other than the wealth that he or she may be accumulating. They also get a role model. A parent who is doing what they love, who is creating value, employing people, making a difference in the world. All of that is very good.

But it is only good if you make the time to have a meaningful relationship with your spouse and your kids. This work life balance is super hard to achieve. I have struggled with it since my kids were young. I think I've done an OK job and have The Gotham Gal to thank for always letting me know when the balance is off.

On this day when love is front and central, I encourage all of you to do what I intend to do which is to pay special attention to those I love and make sure all is well on the home front. The Gotham Gal and I are especially blessed because our son arrived on Valentines day sixteen years ago. So our romantic dinner tonight will be a threesome.


Comments (Archived):

  1. Rohan

    I was reminded of a nice quote I saw on Bijan’s blog..’Most good things happen without a plan: friendships, falling in love, finding a job, and so on. If you want to make your new year count, you’ll need to be intentional — not by setting goals, but by making space in your life for what really matters’ | Zen Habits BlogHappy valentine’s day all! Love is a verb.. 🙂 

    1. fredwilson

      Bijan is a living breathing proof point of that. he’s a tremendous person.

      1. Rohan

        He definitely sounds like it! You know how you connect (or not..) to the voice of a blogger. He’s really got a great voice. Hope to get a chance to interact closer to him. Rather, hope to make that chance..

      2. Rohan

        Fred! Just wanted to thank you for this comment.You inspired me to reach out to Bijan when you said this and I just had a really cool 20 min video interview with him (like the one I did with Joanne).Will let you know when it’s up of course.This is just me saying thanks! 🙂 Happy weekend!

        1. John Revay

          Hi Rohan,I have to go and check out these interviews – how long before your interview w/ Bijan is up?

          1. Rohan

            Wow. How did you find this comment? haha.Bijan will be up on the 12th of March. 🙂

          2. William Mougayar

            Via Engagio…How else would one see a comment from 2 weeks ago in a thread they participated in?

    2. jason wright

      Plans.Only when absolutely necessary. Other times it’s often a safe substitution for action.

      1. Rohan

        Don’t entirely agree.Plans may not always be useful. But the exercise of planning tends to be..

    3. William Mougayar

      Nice comment Rohan.

      1. Rohan

        Thanks Monsieur. Sometimes I outdo myself. ;-)Happy valentines day.. 🙂

        1. Donna Brewington White

          You’d have a hard time outdoing yourself.  Huge capacity.

    4. reece

      love it

    5. Matt A. Myers

      Great quote. Space allows for change and opportunity to exist; Physically, mentally, emotionally. 🙂

    6. ShanaC

      More true than I would like to admit.  How do I make those quiet spaces though?

      1. Rohan

        I’m never comfortable with giving advice, Shana.I am happy to share what works for me though. :)I am a 50-50 on the Extrovert/Introvert scale and really need alone time to re-charge after any interaction. So, if I don’t have quiet spaces, I go down on energy pretty quickly and my internal battery screams for a recharge. Nowadays, I’m more sensitive to those screams. Learning to block out the noise and listen for them.And that’s come from learning that managing myself is WAY more important than managing time. I dug out a blog post I’d written when this hit me..… Hope it helps! 🙂

        1. ShanaC

          Thanks. I have an internal stress engine it seems, and I need to practice quieting the mind more 🙂

          1. Rohan

            Check out this book called Stillness Speaks by Eckhart Tolle. 🙂 

          2. ShanaC


    7. John Revay

      re: his comment  “Most good things happen without a plan: friendships, falling in love, finding a job, and so on”  Reminded me of – “all things happen for a reason”



  2. Adam Schwartz

    10 years ago i quit my job to start my business. We lived off my wife’s salary while we bootstrapped the company. But it wasn’t just her financial support that was the enabler. It was her confidence and belief in me that made all the difference. And while she’s never officially played a role in the business, she’s definitely a co-founder in my book.

    1. fredwilson

      that’s pretty much my story too Adam

    2. Carl Rahn Griffith

      My wife’s patience with my seemingly being a in a perpetual start-up state never ceases to amaze me. As our mutual cards exchanged this morning said, “love you more than ever – through the ups and downs” – pretty much the same sentiment in our cards every Valentine’s day, lol. Maybe life will get easier one of these years but in the meantime, love sure helps.The fact my wife does on average an 80hr week, with lots of stress (she’s a teacher), yet still finds time to be loving never ceases to amaze me.

    3. AVCoholic

      Same story here also. When everyone else would doubt me, she’d always be there with the utmost faith. When everything is hitting the fan and the fight seems insurmountable, knowing that when I turn to my side she’ll be there next to me in solidarity makes all the difference in the world. Co-founder, Mentor, investor – they were many hats for us! Happy Vday!

  3. John Best

    Great post.I value my family’s faith in me, their perspective on what I’m trying to achieve, their insight into how to do that, and above all their patience!There’s no doubt that without them I wouldn’t be on the road I am. More than that, without them I know I’d be a very different person, and the worse for it.They’re are the co-founders of me. 

    1. fredwilson

      i love that last line

      1. reece

        yeah – awesome linei always say my family is my biggest investor

  4. jason wright

    How many hours a week are you not on the go?

    1. fredwilson

      i guess it depends on what “the job” isi work from 5am to 7pm with a break from 7am to 9am for the gym, and waking up my familyi don’t work in the evenings muchi work on and off on the weekends but from homei’d say 70 hours a week, maybe 80 on a hard week

      1. jason wright

        I’d edited my post but you got there first – ‘job’ didn’t seem quite the right word for you. 

      2. davidn315

        What time do you go to sleep?

  5. tyronerubin

    great post, with a great ending about your son, best wishes to all! thanks

    1. fredwilson

      the best valentines gift ever

      1. William Mougayar

        Impeccable. Very blessed circumstance.

  6. laurie kalmanson

    #morelovebeautiful post

  7. Dave Pinsen

    Will the three of you be dining while watching the Knicks game on TV?

    1. fredwilson

      nope. but i sure hope to get back in time for the fourth quarter!

      1. Dave Pinsen

        Last Friday night was the first time I’d watched a regular season NBA game in years. Glad I did. What a show.

      2. William Mougayar

        If you did, it was a great quarter for the Knicks who rallied to take their revenge from Toronto. 90-87!

  8. Carl Rahn Griffith

    What a lovely message – being open with feelings of love/care seems all too neglected by too many, nowadays. Happy Birthday to your son!I’m off to London, shortly, for an evening meeting. Helen wasn’t impressed. Hi ho…

  9. andreaitis

    So many of the skills and values needed as an entrepreneur are things I try to teach my children.  Hard work, planning, thoughtful and logical decision-making, partnership, focus, the excitement of taking something from idea to actual product… It was pretty exciting to see it all come together for them when they had their first lemonade stand this past summer.  And even better when they recruited their friends, worked out a shared payment system and decided to move down the street to a better location for more drive-by business. Parenting is the biggest entrepreneurial role ever. Happy Valentine’s Day, all…

  10. RichardF

    I could not do what i am doing without the support of my wife. Simple as that.

  11. JimHirshfield

    A blessing. Enjoy.

  12. leigh

    I always tell my teenage daughter that one of the best things about being an entrepreneur is the fact that you don’t count on anyone but yourself.But really, that’s not true at all.  I count on my hubbie and her (and occasionally her 3 yr old brother) for a lot of support, understanding and patience.  The journey would be so much harder and far less richer without them.  

  13. andyswan

    24:  Not sure I’ll be able to do this with a wife and kids.34:  I couldn’t do this without a wife and kids.All-in!

    1. karen_e

      My husband turns 44 today. Cupid and I agree, all-in. xox

      1. ShanaC

        (also, totally random, I love your self description)

      2. andyswan

        44 is the new 29

        1. ShanaC

          that makes me feel a tad better….

    2. William Mougayar

      44:? I did it…where are the kids?

      1. ShanaC

        all grown up hopefully 🙂

      2. andyswan

        Oh god you just made me realize that the next step in that progression is a 16 year old daughter.

      3. Donna Brewington White

        Not too late.

    3. Matt A. Myers

      So this means I have roughly 6 years before I’ll have a wife and kids? Sounds good. I certainly am staying conscious of creating space to allow for opportunities to exist. 🙂

  14. William Mougayar

    Very true about the family sacrifices during startup years. Celebrating Valentines Day is a great thing, but living-up to its meaning is on-going thing.For me this is also the day our grandmother left us 8 years ago, after 107 years of life. Her love & that day intersected for a good reason.

  15. Ryan Etheridge

    These are good words, a great reminder.  Thank you.As an educator of young children, I am burdened with the importance of parents.  I see, seemingly unattainable, examples of great parenting and I see heartbreaking stories unfold as parents make decisions which seem directly against what is best for their children.  I am trying to keep these great examples and cautionary tales in mind now that I have a child, even if he’s only a month old and wouldn’t know if I wasn’t home.

    1. fredwilson

      He knows

  16. jordimirobruix

    CoFounders are my wife and kids, on my family. And they help me, bare with me, push me to cofound new ventures (even when some have not gone well, either economically or personally). It is a way of life, and you have to find someone that can live it with you

  17. Humberto

    thanks for the post, i can relate to that a lot..i recently had to decide wether to stay in Boston, NY for startups or go back to my country, Portugal – that’s Europe.i know i would be successful staying in the US. but when i reflected on it for a bit, i started studying the history of the main entrepreneurs, starting with Isaac Merritt occurred to me that i would never be trully successful abroad (i mean, disruptive, global, etc) unless I were successful at home. bridging cultures and pains in a family and friend environment is what makes you an utimate WorldUnderstanding entrepreneur that is also a happy one.There are examples of people who do this on their own, but i’d rather try my own model, until i reached maximum potential at home. then i’ll think where i should grow next.Thanks for this post Fred

    1. ShanaC

      Why do you thinking conquering home helps conquer the world…why can’t moving causing the same effects…

      1. Humberto

        conquering home means so many things: 1. assuming your dreams in front of those who have lived with you all your life and take chances in front of them. 2. take a market you are supposed to understand, clear your personal bias and win it. 3. be with the ones you like and love everyday and fight to continue that way.The result, I think, is that conquering home will keep you honest with others and yourself (1), make you understand reality better (2), and commit to long term growth (3). That’s why i am willing to go with it.

    2. michalis p.

      There’s a saying that goes like : “No propher in his homeland”.Keep that in mind, especially for a small country/society/market like Portugal.

      1. Humberto

        I know. i do hope the market is no longer an excuse, especially if the distribution of your idea is embedded in the product itself… society is a problem, yes. i did a diagnose about entrepreneurship in portugal over at my blog the other day. interested to see what you think..…but take steve jobs, bill gates, …. they all did it at home.

  18. John Revay

    So our romantic dinner tonight will be a threesomeVery Funny  & Happy Birthday to Josh!

  19. LIAD

    No one on their deathbed ever said – “I wish I spent more time in the office”

    1. Tom Labus

      That’s great!!

  20. jason wright

    The anti-thesis of love.Today (of all days) I find out that my college sweetheart got married last November. Life mocks me.

    1. Hjon

      Mocks you? It mocks us all! She’s taken the VC and has to execute, you’re writing the plan and finding a co-founder. When you’re writing the plan you’re thinking about what you could do with the money, when you’ve got the money you daydream about all the other plans you didn’t write. It’s the way of the world.Enjoy the present, the future will come soon enough.

    2. fredwilson

      Sorry to hear that

    3. ShanaC

      it wasn’t meant to be?

    4. Rohan

      Ah. :-(I call it a statue day.Some days you’re the pigeon, some days you’re the statue..Even these pass away though.. (that’s not much consolation.. but well.. )

  21. Bala

    I moved to Iceland, joined a bank that went belly up and when I had a chance to really think about what I wanted to do, my wife was and is my biggest supporter in my effort here. She give me the encouragement, courage and the pep talk when everything else looks very grim. Being an Entrepreneur and  investor in Iceland is not the best of jobs. Everyone says you are crazy to be doing what I do. But there is one person who is always behind me, with all my complaining… my wife who keeps reinforcing to me that she believes in me 100% and reminds me why I do what I do. There is no way I can do this without her encouragement and support. Thank you Fred for reminding everyone the reason we do what we do.

    1. Rohan

      Behind every successful man is a woman.Behind every unsuccessful one.. there are two.;-)

  22. Tom Labus

    Work/life balance is crucial.Family support is essential.

  23. EntrepreneursAnonymous

    Great post. It becomes quite challenging as a single person, especially if you’re not in a hotbed community of young, single entrepreneurs. Even more challenging once one is in his/her mid- to late-30s unless you’ve already had a string of successes. Even more important at that point to have a solid support network, in my experience.

  24. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    Even after 5-years through the journey as an entreprenuer my wife never said “I like what you are doing”. At the same time she never told “Don’t screw-up our life”. She just kept silent and allowing me to do what i do as though i am still working for GE. About a year back she came to me and said “I really love what you are doing … and i love you more for that … making the difference as much as you can”. I asked her why you did not tell me before… she said “I wanted to know whether you are really serious about it”. Well whatelse on can ask for … continuing into my 7th year of the journey.Learning. 

  25. muratcannoyan

    Building a business can be very solitary. My family and friends have consistently reminded me that I am not alone, and the love and faith they have in me has made the journey more remarkable. 

  26. ErikSchwartz

    My wife has been threatening to write a book entitled “Startup Wife” 

    1. Cynthia Schames

      @ErikSchwartz there’s a market for that. 

    2. Rupert Edwards

      You should do it together!And check out Brad & Amy Feld’s blog  called Startup Marriage

    3. ShanaC

      I’d read it if it were startup spouse instead…

    4. LE

      I want her to write that book!I had an idea for a play years ago (or for a movie) which I  would call “Joe Paterno’s wife”.(This was years before what recently happened.)It was about how everything in that household revolved around Joe and Penn State football.  It would have very little in the way of football. It wouldn’t be a football story at all. It would be a story about the significant other of a powerful person.It would be a tragic play, the tagline would be “Joe’s got a game today!!!!”.His wife existed to carry out his goals. It was all about the game. And Penn State.I didn’t know anything about his wife of course. But I thought it was a good metaphor for any person married to another person who subjugate their needs to the other spouse.Imagine, if you will the perfect and true story ending.The man is dead. The image is tarnished. Truth is stranger than fiction.I could have never imagined an ending to that.

    5. Ruth BT

      Sounds like a perfect book. Reading all the comments today I am reminded that taking time out to be the supportive wife is a great choice for me right now.Erik, if your wife ever does write that book let me know – I am part of an informal group of start-up spouses who have a thing or two to say!

  27. William Mougayar

    ❤ ❤ Disqus should change the Likes for today to Loves ❤ ❤ 

    1. Matt A. Myers

      Awww. 🙂

  28. FlavioGomes

    I don’t fear failure….I fear letting my family down.

  29. Cynthia Schames

    It’s Valentines Day. I’m sitting here in a hotel room working on the business plan sketch for a startup I’m very seriously considering founding.  I’m also a 41 year old married woman with two kids. My husband is a CEO and works CEO hours. Part of my brain is saying “are you crazy? you have obligations!”.  The entrepreneur part of me (which is the majority) is saying, “are you crazy? you HAVE to do this!”.It’s a tough decision.  Balance is not my strong suit–which I realize is common to most driven, passionate entrepreneurs. I needed to read this post, and I needed to read these comments.  Thank you all for sharing your open, honest thoughts.  

    1. LE

      “Part of my brain is saying “are you crazy? you have obligations!”.”Your happiness is important also. Also money. If doing a startup makes you happy and gives you economic advantage (which will benefit your kids) then that is what you should do. My sister was routinely criticized for putting her job first. Now her kids are older and don’t need her as much. If she hadn’t put the effort into her job earlier she would be rotting away right now with nothing to do. She also has the expense of a private college to pay for one child (other is still high school.) If it wasn’t for how she concentrated on her career (she does research and grant writing and her skills are in pretty high demand apparently) she’d never be able to afford that as well as the other opportunities from being able to afford a good school district.I wish people would get beyond the notion of being a “good” parent and stop thinking (this isn’t aimed at you by the way) it means taking your kid to the zoo and plays and showing up in the classroom.

      1. Cynthia Schames

        @domainregistry:disqus you are saying what I say to myself.  I’m really not the zoo and class-Mommy type at all, and when I’ve tried to force myself into that mold of “societal expectations of a wife and mother”, I’ve been totally miserable.  Aside from the very real fact that labels chafe me, I’m OK with the fact that I can love my family without hovering or baking cookies every day (though in fact I do make a mean chocolate chip cookie).  It’s my strong belief that a happy, fulfilled Mom who’s doing something she believes is meaningful is a much better gift and example to my kids than a restless, frustrated Mom.  I think your sister is awesome for knowing BETTER and not listening to hackneyed, outdated criticisms from people around her. Money isn’t as big a consideration in my circumstance–which is fortunate in a way but can also be a double-edged sword. Sure, a billion dollars is probably kind of cool, but it’s not the driving force behind what I want to do.

        1. JamesHRH

          Cynthia – I am not, on AVC at least, too open about my situation. Some people from here know my personal gig a bit, from comments elsewhere.However, I think you should hear my story.I spent 10 years working with (for the most part) unprepared founders of startups. The damage that their lack of preparation caused to their lives is immeasurable: family, friends, finances, health, happiness & contentment.The rule I developed was: do a startup @ 26 (no obligations) or 56 (empty nest & a nest egg to propel you – not to mention tons of experience).You want to minimize your downside.Whatever you do (according to my rule) DON’T do it anywhere near the middle (41).Now to my story.My wife is a Mech Eng / JD. Her father was a top 6 executive at a major CDN oil company. She is now rocketing (I get to say so, I am her spouse!) through a career in the energy sector. She is a natural born, principled leader of people (with a photographic memory & a great perspective on herself & life).I should be a stay at home parent ( I have a joke in here about my missing 6-pack & pound cake recipes…).To be clear, I never aspired to be an entrepreneur, don’t even like the word (I can list 5 reasons why it has a negative connotation) and always thought I would join a group and play a part in creating a great business – but not be the founder.I was a stay at home parent when the ‘blinding flash of entrepreneurial lightning’ hit me. I was 43. Our children were 6 & 3.I told my wife about The Rule.My wife’s response: “I broke up with a guy once and told my Mom ‘guess the timing is wrong’. Mom said, ‘right guy, timing does not matter’. Probably the same with your idea.”So, my advice is the Boy Scout advice: Be Prepared.Think your situation through. Put in place the infrastructure that you need (as it sounds like you can afford some). Think about how, not just what, why & when.Think about what you will NOT do to succeed. Stick to those commitments.Measure the family side with metrics that feel as tangible as business metrics. Remember: if it matters you should measure it; if it is measured, it is managed.Go for it because you have to (its a great example for your kids to align your nature with who you are in your life).But do it like you don’t have to; do it like you want to.There’s a big difference.

          1. Cynthia Schames

            @JamesHRH thank you for taking the time, and extending the trust, to share your story. I would logically agree with you that the “sane” times to start a company are in your 20s or in your 50s. But…logic flies out the window in the face of passion. I’m truly passionate about this particular idea. I’ve actually tried ignoring it for about 9 months but it eats away at me. I can’t quit it. So, yes, I am willing to Be Prepared. I’ve actually already got the infrastructure in place (I’ve been a working Mom since my kids were 6 months old). I love your thoughts on metrics and especially about thinking about what I will NOT do to succeed. That’s a very valuable point. Thank you again for being so open. It’s probably obvious by now (and appropriately enough on the same day as the Women 2.0 Conference) that I’m having a hard time not just doing it. So if I do, I’m prepared.

      2. K_Berger

        Being a good parent doesn’t require trips to the zoo but it does require time and attention.  Money helps a lot but no one lives forever and it is what you leave behind that matters most.Life requires a balance and everyone needs to find the one that works for them.  There is no right answer.  (I am certainly not criticizing anyone here.)

    2. JLM

      Nobody is ever really “ready” for anything in life.  Ever.Most people spend too much time worrying before they get to the real decision point.  Because of this, they never really get to the decision point.  Not getting to the decision point is a decision in itself.  It means “nope”, not going to do it.Get your business plan together like tom’w is the decision point and go see some folks whose opinion you respect.  Get a co-founder to share the pain/gain.  Talk it through w/ your man.  Pray on it.How will you feel if you do it?  How will you feel if you do not do it?Follow your instincts.  They are your destiny whispering to you.The richness of life is all about tackling risk in every phase of your life.  If you want it, you will do it and you will be smashing.Of course, I could be wrong?

      1. Cynthia Schames

        @JLM you are so right. Are you reading my mind? Or are we just birds of a feather? ;)Sorry to semi-hijack this thread, but Fred’s post was incredibly timely for me, as I’ve been struggling with this decision for months now, and have finally reached an inflection point. I have someone in mind to discuss this with, and really look forward to that conversation. That person’s reaction will mean a lot in terms of my next steps, as I greatly respect their opinion and capabilities. It’s my sincere hope that they will agree to co-found with me. We shall see.

  30. PhilipSugar

    I do three things:I work “normal hours” except that I keep “office hours” every night from 8-10.  So that means during the day except for my breaks like now I keep my head down.  Office hours is fair game for any discussion.At least once a month, if not once a week, I pick the kids up and we do something fun, today I will pick them up at three from and go to a valentines day party.Every Saturday I take them on some adventure and get them out of Mom’s hairTravel sucks, it is what it is.  As my kids get older my wife and I agreed she would join more.

    1. fredwilson

      I can’t wait until business trips turn into getaways for me and the Gotham Gal. Soon.

      1. JLM

        Freddie, wait until you have the empty nest — an illusion really but a good illusion — and then you will really be able to get some work done.I was in Steamboat (no skiing because of dislocated shoulder) and I got so much work done, it was phenomenal.  The best thing was having time to think.Of course, my wife skis about 6 hours per day, gets a foot massage and fed and then she is pretty docile.Work remotely.

  31. Laura Yecies

    Wanted to chime in here since I’m not seeing a lot of women entrepreneurs comment about their husbands. First off I want to acknowledge mine – beyond supporting my current efforts he has always encouraged me to be an entrepreneur rather than be in a big company.   But the support part is key – we’ve always been partners on the home front but the last years with the intensity of SugarSync he’s gone above and beyond.Second – is something going on here that the women entrepreneurs are too often going it alone on the personal front?  I commented on this in my last blog post recently –… – the numbers do seem to support that this issue exists.

    1. ShanaC

      That’s actually a good question – why there seems to be less men in the supporting role…

  32. markslater

    its simple. all my shares are in my wife and childrens names. 

    1. fredwilson

      All In

      1. markslater

        gotta be! 

    2. JamesHRH

      I like that a lot.

  33. Elia Freedman

    My wife and kids have been instrumental in my business and a lot of people here are saying a lot of great things about that. I can’t add anything unique here.But I wanted to say how much I appreciate this group, too. Every day there is a new challenge, a new insight, that help clarify my own thinking. And it’s not just Fred. There are people and names on this site, too, who do that.I’m not very good at being a part of a community. I’m a bit of a loner by nature. And my previous attempts at being a good community citizen have gotten me ostracized from another community I once thought was a great place to be. (And I still don’t know why.)So while we are all being thankful for our families today, I’d also like to say thank you to this community, too. Keep pushing the envelope, Fred. We all need it.

    1. LE

      “ostracized from another community I once thought was a great place to be. (And I still don’t know why.)””a new insight”What community was that? I would definitely want to do a postmortem and find out why.

      1. Elia Freedman

        Hacker News. I posted an article I wrote that I thought was fun and other developers would like. It was rising up the rankings and suddenly it disappeared. After that every time I tried to even comment on something I was immediately in this “very light gray” color, which basically indicates they don’t want you anymore. I tried to contact folks in charge to find out what was going on but no response.I used to comment here only on occasion and had started to do so more when Fred introduced the “rankings” (bartender, regular, instigator, etc.) Because of what happened at Hacker News I had an immediate negative reaction. But Fred handled it so well, making everyone feel welcome, that it actually caused me to become more involved here. This group has also inspired me to write more on my own blog, too. (I was writing once per week, now every week day.)It all worked out for the best.

        1. LE

          I figured that was the community.There is a big dichotomy about the community .On the one hand you get some very intelligent people of varying ages posting comments about “anything that would interest a hacker” (um as defined by?).You also get some very compassionate people. I remember seeing posts about someone in trouble either mentally, physically or work wise and the entire community rallies up and says “don’t quit how can we help!!!” The outpouring is truly gross as @kidmercury:disqus would say.Then you have the same community that will automatically downvote someone and make them feel like a newbie schmuck because they don’t know the lay of the land and what is acceptable (things that are not in the faq as if people read that anyway).So if someone says “+1” or “I agree” automatic downvotes. If someone says something and offers no backup automatic downvotes. No help or compassion there. Just the equivalent of “you’re stupid”.If someone says something not politically correct, automatic downvote. The only benefit I can see is keeping people conformist within the community. All in all in terms of building a community votes are fine. I just don’t think downvotes are a good thing if you want open and honest discussion.I’ve been studying the comment patterns on HN for some time now. I find that I can predict with pretty good certainty what will get downvoted and if I read a grayed out comment what in the comment caused it to get downvoted. I guess this is pretty obvious to anyone who spends time reading the comments on hacker news.There is also a double standard (as with the rest of life). Top commenters, people that have earned that status generally are given much more latitude to say their mind.

          1. Elia Freedman

            I was getting pretty frustrated with it anyway. One of the problems I have with these kinds of ranking systems is they always favor early adopters and really have little to do with quality of participation. At Hacker News they try to deal with this some but it is still really hard to overcome. Frankly, I was tired of the game.I logged out of the site and have never logged back in. I still go to the site to see articles once per day as there is some very interesting stuff that bubbles to the top but I don’t participate any more and I don’t read the comments.

    2. fredwilson

      Thanks Elia

    3. Tom Labus

      Nice comment.

      1. Elia Freedman

        Thanks, Tom!

    4. ShanaC

      We’re welcome to have you here.  People like you keep me going…So thank you as well

      1. Elia Freedman

        Thanks! 🙂

    5. Donna Brewington White

      I for one am glad you are here, Elia.  

      1. Elia Freedman

        Thanks, Donna. Me, too! 🙂

  34. Danielle Weinblatt

    I grew up with a parent that was an entrepreneur-my mother.  This is clearly not the norm in most families.  My mother started her company when I was 9 and was working 16-18 hour days until I was 18.  She missed out on a lot during my formative years, but I look back and think about what my life is like today and now, I truly understand her.  I don’t think I would have started my own company and knew I would have the support to leave my MBA program and follow my dream, if I didn’t have a parent who had done the same.  It is even better that it was a female role model.

    1. fredwilson

      We need more women role models like your mom

      1. karen_e

        We also need more women gaining P&L responsibility earlier in their careers.

  35. Brandon Marker

    I come from a family of entrepreneurs. I am lucky to have grown up in that environment, and it has led to the point I am at today. It is also the reason for my early [relative] success. I am forever grateful for that.Thanks for the post, Fred.

  36. Denim Smith


  37. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    It is a nice thing. It is the greatest thing. It is the best thing. None of the greatest entrepreneurs told  they would have made a better product or better business … The most popular sentence spelled  out by most of the successful entrepreneur …”I WISH I COULD HAVE SPENT MORE TIME WITH MY FAMILY”.Happy Lovers day…. I really don’t understand why there should be a day for love … too much of commercialization and commodisation. 

    1. AVCoholic

      Every day is supposed to be the day we show appreciation for the ones we love but because we can get caught up in the hustle bustle of life we tend to neglect them. So we dedicate one day that no matter what, we stop for a bit to recognize them. Same thing applies to Mothers and Fathers Day. Every day should be that day.

      1. andyswan

        “every day is kids’ day!”

        1. AVCoholic

          And thankfully they make sure to remind us! 🙂

  38. kidmercury

    ugh. there’s going to be so much happiness today and feel goodiness on this blog in particular. gross. super tuesday is not that far off. that’s the big day in the rethuglican primaries. if you believe unjustified, unprovoked wars are immoral and a free internet is necessary to a prosperous society, then there is only one candidate who meets those criteria. this is obvious, but the reason why it is still a contrarian vote is because being contrarian requires being disliked — and very few people have a tolerance for being disliked. of course, being right is far more important than being liked. your loved ones are supposed to love you anyway, and if you’re extra lucky, they are the foundation that gives you the courage to be contrarian in the first place. 9/11 was an inside job,kid mercury

    1. Rohan

      Boooo on gross..Haha. Purpose of work and serious stuff is to have a life! 😀

      1. kidmercury

        i am not so serious when i say that happy talk is gross, i am primarily saying that for my own amusement, although if there is a kernel of truth to it is that i do have a strong bias towards painful truth over happy talk.

        1. Rohan

          Haha.. of course I know that.The thread wouldn’t be complete without the conspiracy theory point of view.That said, I guess you would do well in media! 🙂 

        2. JamesHRH

          Kid, the cool thing about painful truth is that there is the other side of the coin – awesome truth.GG backing Fred – when perhaps Fred felt that the stats/performance did not justify that support – awesome truth.

          1. kidmercury

            lol awesome truth cause it worked! if my business doesnt work out my girlfriend is going to kill me lol

  39. Modify Watches

    Thanks Fred. My fiancee and I recently separated and this post really hit home. She’s in med school, I’m in working-on-business school and it just seemed like too much. I’m excited to read the comments as I’m sure there are great *tips* from the rest of the readers.

  40. Erik Michielsen

    Well put. Thank you for sharing, Fred. Much of this comes down to being present and, as part of that, prioritizing active listening. 

  41. daryn

    My wife has always been incredibly supportive of my startup career choice. Maybe it’s because I started while we were in school, and we never knew any different 🙂  She definitely played second-fiddle at times, but as we’ve grown up, and had kids, I’ve learned to better balance my attentions, and she’s come to understand that being interrupted to react to a pager isn’t something I grudgingly do as part of a job, it’s something I jump on because it’s important to me. Still, I think she’s particularly happy that this will be our first valentine’s day in 15 years where there’s no “other woman” 🙂 p.s. Happy Birthday Josh!

  42. momoetomo

    Behind a Great man is always a Great Woman! (Exchange genders so it fits for your life)

  43. Richard

    Fred : I received this email from a close friend  singer / song writer. She asked me to pass it along to you. Dear Richard : Wanted to write to you about that avc blog that you and I had a conversation about recently and the problem I am having with today’s post.  Can you tell  that Fred guy that we song writers really count on valentines day to speak to matters of the heart. It’s not that he and the community haven’t made some great points, but, hello, we song writers really count on this day to reach out to our audience.All my love,  Bette Midler

    1. ShanaC

      If this is real that’s amazing!

      1. Richard

        Only in spirit, but who can doubt that musicians and poets should own this day as movers of the heart.

    2. JamesHRH

      If you post a ‘so one night, Bette’s over with some folks and we have all had a couple too many glasses of wine….she’s breaks into…..’ anecdote – my envy meter will red line.

      1. Richard

        Musicians…. the first true disrupters?

  44. ShanaC

    What about other family members, your kids, your parents, your inlaws?

    1. Rohan

      Team effort, I think. Like in every team, there are some you are closest to and who contribute more.. 🙂

      1. ShanaC

        🙂 true

  45. kirklove

    I always love seeing you and GG check in at your kids basketball games. Makes me say, “They get it” I remember Jerry telling a story, too, where you had to miss an important meeting to be at your child’s event (sorry don’t remember all the details). Though I do remember being very impressed by that.Family first. It is the most important “company” you’ll ever build by far.

    1. Rohan

      Jessica’s kindergarten graduation I think.I remember the video too. I knew Fred as a great investor then. Changed to a great person when I saw that..

  46. Nick Grossman

    This is good advice; thanks Fred.  I had a great family-as-co-founder morning today.  Thanks Frannie, you are the greatest.

  47. Jon Lawrence

    Totally awesome post. My wife and daughter are definitely THE core reason I quit what I was doing and launched our startup. Beyond encouragement and support which are sometimes too easy to forget or discount, they give me purpose; and that’s something that I can hold onto no matter what’s going on.Much respect and appreciation for making a point of this today Fred, and to your equally great commenters below.

  48. Ela Madej

    There’s also a path of choosing to work with your significant other, and that’s what’s been working (and well) in each and every project I’ve been involved with in the past 5 years (I know this is not too long but this is as far back as my “career” goes). Who has been starting a company with your romantic partner? How has that (did it?) that work for you? 

    1. PhilipSugar

       I have seen two points which does not draw a line.The first is where you both are in executive roles and have lots of people working for you.  That is really tough because somebody has to be the final say, and while it might be a partnership in marriage, its not the same in business.  The second issue is that employees will never think (and they are probably right) that they get a fair shake when it comes to pillow talk.  We all vent when we get home and venting to another executive when you are winding down is tough on employees.The second is when one significant other has a line role at a smaller company.  This is also tough but seems more do-able.  There still are going to be issues, but they can be offset a bit better.

  49. Jeff K. Ward

    Thanks Fred, I think there isn’t enough people talking about managing startups and family life. I wrote on Maple Butter that “your #1 investor is your spouse” …this extends to your kids and family unit as a whole as you outline here.Here is a post I wrote on the topic:……and here are 20 resources that I think people interested in this post will get value out of:

    1. Jess Bachman

      great post.  I think people can often make the rationalization that my startup affects thousands or even millions of users, and my wife is only one person, thus the startup takes priority.  It’s a utilitarian and damaging way of thinking.  You startup and its millions of customers will suffer if your personal life is failing and ultimately a big distraction to your work.

  50. Robert Metcalf

    A few weeks ago while on travel for work, I overheard some co-workers that have been on long-term “deployment” refer to themselves as “Disneyland Dads”. I’d never heard the term, but the gist is that their kids never see them, but they make enough money to buy them toys and take them to Disneyland. It made me so sad.I’m not super clear on what work I REALLY want to do, but as new husband and expecting father, I have a lot of clarity on what work I WON’T do. And it’s work that keeps me away from my family. It’s the one thing I won’t risk. Everything else could come and go, but my family’s a non-negotiable!

    1. JamesHRH

      Its not the hours, its the impact.My Father was not around much, but I miss him dearly (he has very advanced dementia).He was a terrific role model in many ways.Lots of people can change diapers; only one person can be Mom or Dad. 

    2. LE

      “disney dad” refers also to a divorced father that spoils his children because he only sees them on weekends or every other weekend. Actually – here it is:http://www.urbandictionary….

  51. ttunguz

    This reminds me of the CEO of Coca Cola’s speechImagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them – Work, Family, Health, Friends and Spirit and you’re keeping all of these in the Air.You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back.But the other four Balls – Family, Health, Friends and Spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these; they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for it

    1. JLM

      Well played.  Very deep stuff.  I love it.  Thanks.

  52. Jon Dale

    Wow, this is one of the best comment threads I’ve ever read.  Thanks Fred for such a great post.  And thanks to all the commenters for your sharing and transparency.  What a great community.

  53. Michael Tupper

    I love that Fred is so successful that his outlook on entrepreneurs is so positive in terms of their likely success and contribution (not being sarcastic).”There are benefits a family gets from a parent who is an entrepreneur other than the wealth that he or she may be accumulating.”But, it can be especially tragic and trying when the entrepreneur fails and not only doesn’t accumulate any wealth, but obliterates any he had accumulated previously. That is a true test of a marriage and love: for better or for worse. While one failed start-up can be an extremely lonely and profound endeavor, I borrow from a quote I read some time ago to help remind me of the really important things: at least I have three extremely successful start-ups under my belt, their names are Ian (10), Matías (8) and Zöe (5).

  54. mikenolan99

    I spoke to a High School class yesterday, and talked about my first time as a founder/entrepreneur.  I mentioned that I had an affair… with my job.  Too much time at the office – and too much of my passion.It took a strong women to bring me back from the brink. The good news is she saved me – we are celebrating 25 great years of marriage.Of course, life is interesting.  She’s in Belize for two months doing Doctoral research for her new career, and I’m taking care of the kids.  Life has a way of sorting things out.

    1. Tom Labus

      That’s a pretty good deal.

  55. Alex Urevick-Ackelsberg

    Hell yeah!!! What a truly beautiful post!Thanks for helping to fight the stereotype that you have to sacrifice family life in order to fulfill your life’s goals/obsessions (startup or otherwise)!

  56. Patrick Kedziora

    Thanks Fred for reminding us that yes, we are not alone, but we sometimes act like it. Beautiful post for Valentines’ Day. Now let’s all go home and spend some time with our co-founders.

  57. PhilipSugar

    I was thinking about this as I rode home and took my kids to a party, where I now am the only Dad.I’ve said this before about coming out of school working for BigCo.  You’re sense of security might be misplaced as somebody you don’t even know controls your destiny.If you followed my one guest post here I outlined all of my fraternity brothers that were entrepreneurial CEOs.  I did not outline those that worked for iBanks, Hedge Funds, Big Consulting Companies and Law Firms.  If you measure success by money , I think the latter group might be more successful.  I know for a fact divorce rate is also a large multiple higher.So like Charlie says, you control your destiny, make the right choice, but be damn happy you have that choice not that it is controlled by others.

  58. Donna Brewington White

    This post, these comments, strike home for me.  But they’ve also inspired an idea for a Valentine’s Day gift for my husband.  I was stuck, and he’d rather not receive anything at all than to receive a meaningless, token gift. Sometimes I feel like the resident sentimentalist (as much as I hate sentimentality!), but I’m a little choked up reading AVC today — not tissue box level, but definitely affected.Today, more than ever, I am aware of how good you are, Fred, at pulling meaningful interaction from people.  And, yes, this is also attributed to a community that somehow continues to create a safe place for each other. But not hokey safe.  Safe with an edge.

  59. John

    I was having a bit of this discussion today with some business friends.  Essentially, I’m probably not creating the business that I could create because I choose to not let the business overtake my life.  I’m sure many can’t appreciate this balance, but I know work and new opportunities will always be there.  What won’t be there is the amazing time I’m having with my kids and wife.  Business opportunities never grow old, but family does.  Thus why I choose the balance I do.If I’m only moderately successful in business, but wildly successful in my family life, I’m good with that.  

  60. Kristin S.

    I loved this!  I’m so proud of my husband, who started his own business a few years ago and is doing a fantastic job as husband and father as well.   Thank you.

  61. JamesHRH

    I am not a big one on the passion rationale – I like ‘eats away at me’ a lot more!Passions fade. Make it a commitment, an extension of your philosophy and a part of your personal legacy. Take doing it right as your goal; don’t just shoot for doing it.It is a great sign that you have spent 9 months grinding on going for it or not going for it. I spent the first 6 months trying to make the idea go away – actively. ( I would recommend Winning at New Products –… .) . I couldn’t – that’s when I had the conversation with my wife.Good luck!

  62. ninakix

    “But just because your spouse (wife or husband) and your kids are not that engaged in your startup doesn’t mean that they aren’t also making a huge investment in it. They see less of you than they would like and when they are with you, its likely that you are at least somewhat distracted by your current obsession. I don’t start companies but I’m guilty of this behavior too. I can only imagine what it is like when you are “all in” on one thing and one thing only.”What’s funny about this is this is the way I am even if there isn’t a company. Natural obsessiveness is a pattern. (:

  63. babibob

    Thanks Charlie!

  64. Guest

    I agree with you totally.

  65. Richard

    Is there a difference between search and discovery? For me search is when you know what you are looking for, discovery is when you are looking for something to add to your life. What do I want? I call it searchface. I want to know where a VC spends his time on the internet. Where Francis Collins spends his time? Where Leonardo Dicaprio spends his time? Etc? Couldn’t this be done on a opt in format? ( a searchface button? ) 

  66. babibob

    As Andrew London Said : there is enough time to sleep and sing

  67. Jo Tango

    Fred, this is a great reminder to me that it is easy to neglect the ones closest to us, and so, thank you.  Hope you are well.  Been ages since we last connected.

  68. Rohan

    Leif Johansson’s (ex CEO of Volvo) kitchen table test.Is there anything you did in the week that you wouldn’t be proud of share with your family at the kitchen table on Saturday morning at breakfast?

  69. Shawn Cohen

    Yeah, as the son of an entrepreneur, I’m on the outside of this post, looking in. My dad has been an excellent role model not only of entrepreneurship but of life. And my mom an excellent role model of the wife of an entrepreneur.My dad tried really hard to include us in his business and even though it probably took more of his time correcting our errors, he still let us do it and experience the joy of making some hard-earned money.I think you’re this kind of guy, Fred. And when your kids are my age, I’m sure they’ll say about you what I can say about my dad today. 

  70. JLM

    A lot of miles and wisdom in that post.  Good luck and Happy Valentines Day!Every inflection point is a new direction.

  71. William Mougayar

    You said it like a champ Charlie! I’m giving out love likes today ❤

  72. Cynthia Schames

    @ccrystle:disqus Thank you for saying all of this. Every word is true and wise.  

  73. Rohan


  74. Elia Freedman

    Thanks for sharing, Charlie, and hope your new beginning is a positive one.

  75. Matt A. Myers

    I’m happy to hear you’re feeling healthier and a bit happier — I’ve found happiness is a self-perpetuating cycle once you get it started, so it’ll keep getting better. :)And ❤ to you my friend! I feel a lot closer to you than we’ve ever physically been, though the brief time we could hangout in NY pretty much sealed for me that you’re the good kind person I thought you were. 🙂

  76. Brian Snyder

    Fred, thank you for writing this. Enormously important topic – in many ways, maybe the most important one.Charlie, thank you for sharing your struggle. A couple weeks ago, I wrote a post for PandoDaily called, Good Dad, Good Entrepreneur, Good Husband…. I documented my personal challenges with balance and prescribed myself a plan to improve going forward. I have a lot of work to do but I’m hopeful that redirected focus has a big impact.

  77. ShanaC

    You ok?

  78. andyswan

    Pappy on me next time in NYC.  

  79. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    Have a good one.This is not the end. This is the beginning.  

  80. Rohan

    I thought about this a bit Charlie as I was crunching numbers now.. I couldn’t muster up anything to say when I first read it except ‘Respect’. I think I have some more to add now.Firstly, thank you for sharing. You have no idea how much of a difference you have made. I’m sure many will look back at this comment as one of those moments that made them pause and think.A real difference maker.There were many questions/thoughts that came to mind when I read this.. The idealistic – can’t you guys make it work now? The realistic – glad you guys have a good positive relationship..The optimistic – I hope it’s all for the best.. and hope you find a balance as you grow through this (grow through.. not go through..)And then I thought to myself that you must have thought through this and many more. All I can say is.. I’m praying it works out for the best.When I go through tough (and thus, humbling) times, I just think everything works out fine in the end.. if it’s not fine, it’s not the end.. and then get right back to work.There is only so much we can do, I guess. Act, fail, learn, stay positive, happy and work hard…Thank you again for sharing..

  81. kidmercury

    this is a great comment. painful truth is some of the most valuable stuff in the world.

  82. matthughes

    That’s a powerful message, thanks for sharing.

  83. awaldstein

    Wine, friendship and semi-objective listening I can offer.

  84. kirklove

    Charlie – thanks for sharing this. Sorry to hear and wish you and your family all the best in every possible way.

  85. LE

    “The thing about startup work is that you feel you’re never done.”Charlie I can appreciate your perspective on this but let me give you mine.There is this common thought that there are people lying on their death bed looking back at their life saying that the phone call they took late at night, or the time they didn’t spend with their kids, well, it wasn’t really that important in retrospect. The didn’t have to work that hard.But the truth is that is easy to judge in retrospect after everything has played out whether something was important or not.You never know when it’s happening what will be the “thing” that leads to the “thing” if you are trying to make any idea work.That’s why it requires so much effort  and working all the time. Because this is not taking tests in law or medical school where everything is layed out as far as what you need to do to get ahead (good grades?). Entrepreneurship has no master plan that insures success like a profession does. Certainly not a startup either.I can directly tie things right now that I am benefitting from to a time back maybe 16 years ago when I spent time holed up in my (small) shore place while my (ex wife) was at the pool downstairs with the kids. She was constantly hocking me about coming down to the pool and spending some time with them. I was totally focused and trying to learn what I needed to learn to be able to do something on the Internet. I actually spent most of the summer that way. O’Reilly books. Perl, Dns&Bind etc. Even though I had a boat and a beach and everything else. I didn’t even put the boat in the water that year (there was a dock right at the building I could see from my window).In retrospect if I hadn’t done that many things today for me would be different. (Oh sure maybe I would have done something else that worked as well I’ll admit that you never know). And the money to get that place? From something similar that I did years before  that had the same focus. Worked 7 days most weeks 10 to 12 hours a day. Didn’t take a vacation for maybe 5 years who knows. My new wife is 100% on board with how I roll and actually likes the fact that I work as much as I do simply because of her past relationship. She fully supports me and I fully support her. She is a physician and has her own career. In her past relationship her husband was always complaining when she was in medical school and residency that she should be at home with the kids. Anyway, these are my thoughts. If you would like some dating advice when you are ready please contact me.  Compatibility means more than liking the same food, music and movies.

  86. JamesHRH

    Charlie – I agree with Kirk. Thanks for sharing your cautionary tale.

  87. Donna Brewington White


  88. K_Berger

    Thanks for this, Charlie.  Obviously came from the heart.  Wishing you all the best.Echoing your thoughts, life needs a balance, but the trick is that the balance is different for everyone.  Some kids need more help with homework, others need less.  Large families require more time parenting than smaller families.  Health is a huge factor always.  There are many more examples.As an observant Jew, the Sabbath is what keeps things sane for me.  Every Friday night, for 25 hours, no phones, no work, lots of time with family.  And it is non-negotiable; when sundown comes, work stops.  More often than not I say that I don’t know how the rest of the world survives without it. I’m not evangelizing, but whether it is date night or family movie night or regularly scheduled no-work weekends, you gotta set a boundary and then stick to it.  Once you push it off to tomorrow, tomorrow never comes.Cue Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle”…

  89. panterosa,

    Charlie, having divorced 4 years ago, but with a 6 year old in tow, I remember the sense of how sad it was to have things break. But things break for a reason, and trying to keep something broken together is not allowing the dynamic to evolve. I felt I had been holding a heavy leaking vessel, trying to stem each new leak, until I set the vase down and let it break. The act of giving up, trying as it felt, was also liberating in beginning to know my own limits. It’s when I became myself the most over recent years. As I stopped beating myself up for not being who I wasn’t (saving a marriage), I allowed myself to succeed at what I did, and liked, and was.We see divorce as a failure of marriage, and hence ourselves, as if simply promising to marry waves a wand over difficulties and incompatibilities like sheer will power could solve them. When I was out dating far and wide, I met a divorced dad who felt relationships are not buying contracts but leases, which should renew periodically. Makes perfect sense. So many feel marriage allows them immunity from having to grow themselves, with their partner, and in their careers, (besides if they become parents, a whole other growth curve), because they bought in “for life”.So while the sting is still there, and sorry to hear that in your voice, some time will reveal deeper reasons of what broke and why, so that you can accept those realities as valid.And yes on the Jerry factor. My little lean startup will go without a lot to have his objective voice on a regular basis. (I’d almost go out tricking to pay him;). I met him right after my papers came through and it was time to solve my career which had suffered from having a colossally unsupportive mate. Turns out that you can be a single mother, quit your lame day job, and run a startup which fuels your incredible passion for your work. WIth the right support behind you. And you can find a totally cool new person to chill with who gets you and supports you for who you are. Women mourn within the relationship, and men after it has ended. I’m actually quite confident you will sort things out more quickly than you expect. 

  90. Jeff Lu

    This is an amazing and valuable comment. It should be a blog. Thank you for being honest and sharing it with us.

  91. fredwilson

    Yeah. Totally

  92. Brandon Marker

    much respect.

  93. Matt A. Myers


  94. Brian Snyder

    Sorry, link shared 🙂

  95. William Mougayar

    I’m rooting for Charlie, the come back kid.

  96. fredwilson

    Good rule to live by

  97. ShanaC

    I can feel that.  Going through that myself too.  I’m a firm believer in the future getting better 🙂

  98. andyswan

    Completely agree.  What we do, what we make… it’s a very important and large part of who we are.My grandfather died at 94, working the farm he built over 70 years until his final days.  We remember him at our birthdays, graduations, cookouts and games…but we also remember him on his combine, caring for the land that he’d built, teaching us how to create, protect, earn, innovate…save.He had an ugly green hat that had three iron-on letters on it:C  E  O

  99. JamesHRH

    its not right or wrong. it alignment.

  100. Jeff

    LE, thank you, thank you, thank you for speaking as a true entrepreneur. This death-bed-regret story is baloney. The right partner 100% embraces entrepreneurship, appreciates that you have no choice but to do what you do, and appreciates that you’re working towards something great. The world has changed and unless one works REALLY hard, you will be left behind.So, my advice, find a partner that works REALLY hard and appreciates hard work.

  101. awaldstein

    Yup, i’ll be in town.

  102. Cynthia Schames

    @ccrystle:disqus If none of us ever made mistakes, none of us would ever learn anything. You seem to be learning, growing, changing, and happier for it.  So would you, in fact, have chosen to avoid the circumstance?  Maybe…but maybe it’s what you needed in order to change in the way you needed to change. 

  103. Rohan

    Deep, that.

  104. Donna Brewington White

    conscious choices or aware choices?we can make conscious choices that are not very awaream learning that awareness makes all the difference in life…but cannot say I’ve mastered it

  105. Brian Snyder

    thank you, Charlie. really appreciate that.

  106. Donna Brewington White

    much much much respect

  107. Donna Brewington White

    “if it’s not fine, it’s not the end…”Such wisdom, Rohan.  Will have to remember this.

  108. panterosa,

    Maybe I drank too much of his kool aid, but I believe Jerry when he says “you’re good”. Especially since he doesn’t always dole that out (he gave me high Colonnics today on some thing I put together – totally shredded it. He was right then too, and I see why – he set the bar from good to awesome). All you need to see is how ‘you’re already good’….Happy to dish divorced life over a drink if it serves you. Yes, it can be a good place. Take a seat at the table.

  109. Rohan

    I was thinking of you unrelatedly yesterday.It’s been a long while since we’ve exchanged hellos. I guess it’s the time differenceI’m out by the time you’re in!Hello! 🙂 

  110. Top Online Degrees

    Your points reflects your wisdom & without any doubt your experience with entrepreneurship is just outstanding on how you pictured the whole family + business management thing. Glad to read all of your worthy points.

  111. Humberto

    not always. just watch my saturdays at the Boom Boom Room/ Le Bain in the Standard Hotel. Or rocket nights @ Lit.not something i’d share at the kitchen table. still, i’m proud of many of those dancing/ crowdsurfing nights.words are short. that makes descriptions easy to say at face value. intentions and decisions are complex, very hard to capture into words. that brings a lot of disallignment in don’t have to comunicate everything. its not hypocrisy. there are different Circles in life (Ah! one for google).you have to feel good about yourself. that’s simpler.

  112. LE

    “Cue Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle”..”When I was a kid the rabbi read the words to that song as part of the sermon. Most of the audience (older) had never heard that song. At the end “my boy was just like me” there was a tremendous laugh.

  113. Mark Essel

    I think there’s a quality vs quantity trade everyone has to find for themselves. If you’re working all night, every night, it costs clarity and focus during the day. I’m happy with nonlinear bursts of productivity coupled with quality time with my wife. When I’m working (even at home), I’m not there emotionally for her, so I cap it.Best of luck to your and your wife on what may come. Glad to hear you’re taking care of yourself.