It's probably bad enough that John would be willing to knowingly let his family be unfairly penalized by his angry lunatic of a wife in the name of presenting a united front and keeping her from really seeing what's wrong with her life and thus leaving him without his not realizing that that will never happen. The poor fool seems to have never realized that while Elly might be angry at him and the kids for not supporting her goals, she doesn't really have the stamina or willingness to pursue them. Take, as an example, the college education she never seemed to have found the time to complete. While he might fear that an Elly with a degree might decide that she doesn't need him, he doesn't realize that she loves the idea of not having a degree to hold over the children's heads far more because of his stupid habit of taking Elly's endless beefing at face value. You would think that her feeling that she was justified in screaming NO!!! NO!!!! NO!!!!! when he offered her a solution that wouldn't allow her to have her cake and eat it too would have taught him that he married a woman who likes having problems she can't solve so she doesn't have to try and possibly fail but he hasn't twigged to it yet. Doing that might mean that he isn't a great judge of character and since that would mean that he's as dumb as people say he is, that would be awful.