This isn't what I imagined :(

posted 3 years ago in Emotional
Post # 3
1793 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I wouldn’t be too hard on your FI. It sounds like he’s upset about the possibility that he hasn’t been able to succeed in his dream job.  That’s enough to get anyone down. He also is likely upset and maybe even embarrassed feeling like he let you down in some way. I think the best way to help him is to tell him you’re proud for sticking with it for so long, but ask him if he’s happy at work.  If he says no, suggest you start looking for careers where a law degree might be useful. Unless there are issues you haven’t mentioned, this doesn’t seem worthy of ending a relationship.  I’m sorry your engagement has hit some rough patches. Good luck to you both.  

Post # 4
5208 posts
Bee Keeper

There are a lot of careers that you learn 90% of the job skills ON THE JOB your first year. My first year out of nursing school was HORRIBLE(I actually applied for a waitressing job at one point). BUT, I stuck it out, and once I got my feet underneath me, I got some confidence and things got easier. If your FI is genuinely depressed, he needs good medical care…….encourage him to see a therapist. He doesn’t want to go into a potential new job depressed(clinical depression caused me a nursing job). All you can do is keep encouraging him and love him through this rough patch. (((((Hugs)))))) Keep your chin up….this too shall pass.

Post # 5
178 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I don’t believe in the concept of “the universe” but life throws crap on everyone, and that does not indicate whether or not your relationship is good. If you love him, you will tough it out.

Post # 6
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I’m sorry, this must be so hard on both of you. Sad to say things are NOT good for law graduates right now – there are way too many on the market. It used to be a gaurantee for a great career, but not anymore, ESP because of the huge debt so many people rack up during graduate school. If you rack up a $100,00 or more debt for a degree it’s because you think you will have a well paying job that can pay it off, and people are devastated when this hasn’t happened. 

You might need to kick your fiancé in the pants a bit. Now is not the time for a pity party and it is a true test of a relationship. You want to make sure you aren’t partnering with a guy who curls up on the couch when life gets tough – cuz life will be tough at times. 

Iactually considered getting a law degree, but not to practice law. There are several careers that having a law degree is a boon outside of law. Maybe he should start thinking more broadly about his career path – also mediation is one of the few growing areas of practice, maybe he should look there.

TBQH – I am a bit of a hard ass. I wanted a guy who was a fighter – in the sense he would do what it took to make it, regardless of the difficulties thrown in his path. Idk any thing about your FI background burnout getting his dream job or a great job a few years out of school should not crush him. He needs to take the frustration and turn it into real motivation, giving up or taking his fustration/disappointment out on you is the only wrong thing to do.

Post # 7
1175 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@HaumeasHeart:  In 2010 I lost a job that I had loved, worked there for 7 years.  I did immeadiately find work, but it was less money.  Then as soon as I got settled in this new jo, they went under….and I was unemployed again……from January 2011 to August 2012.  I was depressed, I went and took classes to futher myself in my career field, and still nobody would hire me.  The more I got depressed the more it seemed to effect our relationship.  I wasn’t happy, and so he wasn’t happy.  It got to the point it was effecting our sex life, and being able to communicate with each other.  But not ONE TIME, did he give up on me.  He took care of all the bills, paid for everything the kids needed (not his children), constantly encouraging me, and held me up when I just knew that I would crumble.  Never before had I ever been in a position where someone else stepped up and did what I felt my my job, I will never forget that he done all those things that HE DIDN”T HAVE TO DO.

My point is this, a career is important.  I am sure it makes him feel like he is less than.  I am sure that he doesn’t like it at all that he cannot provide for you.  Which would be normal for him to be depressed.  Just be supportive of him, he needs that from you.  It may take a while for him to find a good job in his career field.  Don’t give up on him because things get hard.  You have agreed to marry this man……for better or worse.  It will get better, sometimes it just takes a while.

Post # 8
441 posts
Helper bee

@HaumeasHeart:  That’s really rough. I can relate. However, career drive is another one of those things you can’t change about somebody.

Obviously he needs to take responsibility for his financial obligations and debts – if he isn’t doing that, then it’s a problem. But other than that – well, are you dating him for his career ambition / business acumen?

If not, then even though it’s difficult, all you can do is let go. All by himself, he’ll either figure it out, or get an unsexy job and find fulfillment outside of work.

I know firsthand how frustrating it is when your SO doesn’t do what you would do to achieve what you think is the “right” career. But if you trust this guy and respect his abilities, you’ll let him do it his own way.

It sounds like you already had to push him into doing something for his career. I would definitely not recommend doing that a second time. If you keep doing that, the BEST case scenario is you pushing him into career things for the rest of your lives.

If you wash your hands of the issue and let him know that you trust him and you simply hold him responsible for his outcome, then even in the worst case scenario, he’ll have his own honest chance and you’ll find out what’s really important to him.

I want to be with my SO whether he has a breakout career success or not. But even if I could push him into one, I wouldn’t, because it’s a disservice to both of us. I won’t even listen to him complaining or moping about it if he’s not going to take my advice.

If you love him regardless of his career, then make a financial plan to pay off your debt, forget about his career, and enjoy being with him as a human being. You can’t push him into success, but you can be a good example of happiness and responsibility.

I don’t know if that helps any, but I hope so – I understand the temptation to push career success on your SO, but IMO it’s an impossible situation for both parties.

Post # 9
4474 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

I would shift your focus from thinking about how the engagement is supposed to be going, and think about this as one phase of your lives together in the bigger picture. You need to help your SO get through this as best you can – with counseling, etc. – and think about how to help achieve the future you both want, as opposed to thinking about how you can make this time of your life what you always envisioned. Besides if you get over this hurdle who’s to say that the rest of your engagement can’t be what you always pictured? 

P.S. If you are unsure if this is really the right situation for you then perhaps you and your SO should seek counseling and you can determine if this relationship is worth pushing on for. 

Post # 10
94 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

It seems like a stressful time to be engaged, actually. Planning a wedding can be stressful. I can’t even imagine how it would feel to be planning one if I were unemployed. 

Post # 11
1140 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013 - Ontario, Canada

I tell you what, I think the whole notion that your engagement time is all fluffy clouds and puppies is completely wrong. To be honest I think it’s been really hard on our relationship becuase of the stress, family drama, other life issues cropping up, the financial burden of it all etc etc but now that we are less than 2 months away from the wedding things are actually really great.

We have had some really tough times throughout our relationship. Unemployment, health problems, 2 traffic accidents, horrible work situations etc etc. so some of the thought and stuff you are gonig through I can really relate too. We sometimes joke to say that we are only lucky in love, everything else seems to be against us but you know what? We have  a really solid relationship because we have learned to work as a team and deal with each other during those hard times and we know how to lift each other up and help fight when you feel like you have nothing left or you doubt yourself. At the end of the day – life is not all rosy all the time and what a marriage really is all about is learning to cope through all the crap life throws at you and come out stronger and wiser at the other end.

I know it’s super hard to have your other half be down on himself but you need to be supportive and honest with him about your concerns. Maybe you can sit down and come up with ideas of other opportinites for him and put together a plan of action? Show him that you are there for him, that you want to help and that you can get through this together. You know what? You can if you believe you can and you don’t give up. 🙂

Good luck and try to stay possitive hun.



Post # 12
11772 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2013

Can you guys move to somewhere with more work?

I’m with PPs–I can’t imagine how hard this must be on you right now, but I think once he does get a decent job in his field, that he will be SO much haooier (and you will, too!)

Post # 14
7654 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

@HaumeasHeart:  Entering into the committment of marriage means you support and love one another even though the worst of times. You are going through the worst of times right now , and this is when you guys need each other the most. I cannot imagine what you are going through and how hard it must be for both of you, but you will have harder and worse things in life that you will need to work together on, but HE needs to be more open to moving in the future. I think counseling to get his self esteem back up also needs to be an option. I wonder if his attitude and mindset is so sad right now how he is able to carry himself in an interview?

I would have another talk with him. Be support and positive and tell him that this isn’t an ideal situation but together you can make it through, but each of you had to be willing to make sacrifices and it may not be easy for a while, but it will get better soon. Just be positive!

Good luck 🙂

Post # 15
2576 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

@megz06:  +1

OP – When you talk to your FI about this, I think you should suggest that he puts job interviews on hold until he gets his head in the right place (obviously word it more tactfully, but you get the idea…). Even during a great economy, law is an extremely competitive profession where candidates will step on each other to get entry-level associate jobs. In a bad economy? It might as well be Lord of the Flies. Like Megz asked, “How is he getting through this interviews?” And something tells me that he’s not. I don’t think it’s his lay-offs that are causing the problem – I have a guy friend who got fired twice (fired, not laid off) in his line of work and he easily got a 6 figure job recently. Why? B/c he’s confident and not afraid to boast about his abilities/what he can bring to the company. If your FI is depressed, I can guarantee you it’s coming off in his interviews. HR can sense it, and law firm partners tend to be ruthless assholes and can also sense it. Instead of wasting opportunities right now, he needs to do what it takes to get his head back in the game. Maybe do some pro bono cases? Maybe tutor law students? I don’t know – something that will stop “demoralizing” him and give him some strength. Good luck! I hope things turn around for you soon.

Post # 16
1308 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

@HaumeasHeart:  A career is VERY important to a guy, it’s part of what defines him as a man. My SO was highly dissatisfied with his job and I couldn’t get why he couldn’t just stick it out. I’ve dealt with worse, right? But I’ve come to realize that he needs to do what he needs to do in order to feel complete.

I’m sorry that your FI has gotten the unfair hand with the legal job market.  When I graduated law school, I also had some problems and coupled with a whole bunch of other stuff, I was left depressed for a few yrs. Even to this day, I can still get down on myself with respect to my career. Like PPs have mentioned, marriage isn’t all roses and this is going to be the true test of your commitment and support to each other.  Try to understand that this isn’t about you or the engagement. It’s about him and probably how he feels about not being able to financially support his future wife and family. I suggest maybe getting him to look at other non-law jobs that may be closer to the law. There are jobs for JDs as consultants, job recruiters, etc.

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