Post # 1
My FI has been unemployed since he had to leave grad school in Dec (he was VERY badly professionallyscrewed – the lawyer he talked to said he SHOLD have sued). He was happy to leave and has often depressed after not getting a job he interviewed for. I get unemployment and being depressesee – I was unemployed 2 years. But I looked fo jobs. Whether it was on boards, or atbusinesses or at temp agencies. I worked really hard together a job.
FI? He throughout the day leisurely applies for a few jobs. Maybe 3 or 4 a day. A DAY. The Rest of the day is dedicated to his various video game escapes. I keep telling him I don’t want to marry someone who puts his videos games above his family (which is what I feels he does when he doesn’t apply for jobs but does a 5 team mission on Monster Tri Hunter)? I send him 10 – 20 jobs to apply for each AM (he says he does but I know he doesn’t apply to all of them).
How can I help him/what’s a girl to do?
Post # 3
That sounds like one part depression/disappointment and one part living a life of leisure. He plays video games because he has the luxury of playing video games. Because someone else is paying now for the residence in which he plays them, the electricity he uses to play them, perhaps the games themselves (I don’t know what all he’s playing and if it’s anything that has continuing costs beyong initial purchase). Who is paying for food during all this? 6 months has passed, and if he’s still paying for all these things for himself out of savings, he must have had one hell of a savings account.
If that’s you doing all this enabling, cut it out. Saying you don’t want to marry him doesn’t feel like a real ultimatim – it’s vague and in the future. But saying he’s on his own for bills and food starting next month might light a fire under him.
A month gives him time to look more energetically, and hopefully find something.
Post # 4
FI was laid off (he’s a plumber so this could happen for just a month or two) in Jan. 2011 and became unemployed shortly after when his employer screwed him over big time. This happened right after he proposed so we weren’t too worried about it at the time. Fast forward to today and he STILL hasn’t found a job. He has tried relentlessly and after awhile it becomes very discouraging.
I noticed FI became very depressed and angry for awhile because he feels terrible I have to be the one working full time. He hates sitting around doing nothing so he plays FFXI a lot of the time to escape. It shuts off all reality until it’s time to face it.
It’s gotten to the point that FI finally opened up his own plumbing business with a friend/old teacher, but it’s still going to take time to build up clients. He also just lost his unemployment this month so we really are scared wondering what’s going to happen.
I wish your FI the best of luck with finding a job. It’s very scary and worrisome. Please help support him as much as you can rather than be against him. He probably feels like absolute shit.
Post # 5
I am currently unemployed, I was laid off at the beginning of the year and I would be estatic to apply for 3 to 4 jobs a day. The jobs are just not there or do not fit what I can do. Maybe all the jobs you send him don’t fit his experience so he chooses which ones to apply for and vetos the rest?
He has got to be happy doing the job he applies for too. While I understand your concern that he isn’t putting in enough effort why don’t you encourage him to learn a new skill or help him revamp his resume.
Post # 6
This may come off as a little harsh, but if he’s going to be at home all day then he needs to do something other than playing video games. Does he clean, cook, do laundry, do yardwork, anything? My SO stays at home. I imagine that the television is on for less than an hour when I’m at work and that’s usually to check the weather. Granted, he takes a couple of classes in the major semesters, but for all intents and purposes he is a househusband. He does pretty much everything around the house except cooking (which I do because I enjoy doing it). It rocks! He also does side jobs here and there like painting or powerwashing, etc. We are lucky in the fact that this arrangement works for us financially, but if he’s staying home then he needs to at least be pulling his weight while looking for a job.
Post # 7
I think you’ve done all that you can do. You’ve expressed your displeasure with the situation and you’ve sent him countless job opportunities. Short of applying for him, there’s not much more that you can do. He has to want to get his ass in gear and find a job. I know that’s easier said than done but it is what it is.
Post # 8
I hate to break it to you, but applying to jobs through internet job boards is probably not going to get him a job, so the 10-20 jobs you send him per day is not going to do much good. Only 20% of jobs are filled by respondents to internet ads, with the rest filled by networking. He should be out of the house and volunteering part-time because it will a) give me something to put on his resume so it doesn’t look like he has a huge gap and b) could lead to job since employers often hire from their volunteer pool. Aside from that, he should be finding people in his field and calling/emailing asking if he could set up informational interviews. If there’s a job-search support group in the area, he should go to that and Go to young professional’s happy hour, go to community events, go to anything that will be well attended by people who might want to hire him. There are so many people applying for jobs that it’s really hard to get one unless you have an inside contact.
Believe me, I made the mistake of spending all day applying to online postings and it burned me out and I didn’t get anywhere with it. I’m not disagreeing that he needs to get away from the video games but when he does apply, he needs to put out very high-quality applications and ideally find an “in” at the organization. IMO, if you put out 10-20 applications a day, they are not going to be high-quality enough to land a job.
Tell him that you’d like him to follow your schedule as far as being out of the house during the day. Then he can spend the day volunteering, networking or working on applications at the library. Good luck, it’s tough out there.
Post # 9
@Absolute: I’d have a serious, non-accusatory chat with him. Obviously this would make you uneasy. I think he may be partly depressed, partly scared to go back after getting screwed over, and partly discouraged. Video games are an escape for him. You have to let him know how worried you are over this. It doesn’t sound like he’s the type of guy who lacks ambition… he’s just in a bit of a rut. Let him know you’re ok with him being unemployed as long as he’s making it a full-time job to find a job. Maybe suggest he works something ‘below’ him to fill some time and pay some bills. He probably feels a bit emasculated too. I think every couple goes through some sort of rough patch in their lives… you can ride it out if you’re both on the same page.
Post # 10
First of all, STOP sending him jobs. You’re not his mother nor are you his recruiter. You have your own job.
2nd – sit down with him and listen to what he has to say. Ask him what his plan is to get a job or occupy his time during the day? Help him come up with a strategy. And I say Help him…. bu tthat doesn’t mean you tell him what his strategy SHOULD be. You can ask him to outline what he thinks his day SHOULD consist of. how much time for video games, what else should he be doing. But don’t give him the answers. That’s not your place. He’s an adult. If you allow him to be a kid, he’ll act like a kid.
One of the best tips they give for people who are unemployed is to volunteer. Either in your field, or in an area that you are passionate about or enjoy. So, if he has computer skills, he could go volunteer somewhere getting all their files uploaded or whatever.
If he likes dogs – he can go volunteer a couple hours a day at shelters or whatever. He can tutor summer school kids at the local Jr High. He can volunteer at Big Brother / Big Sister (well, ok he can’t volunteer at Big Sister). The point is to get him out of the house and doing something that gives him at least a small sense of purpose. But it has to come from HIM. Not something you have “told” him to do.
I don’t kwow what he was studying…. but you said “left grad school” which doesn’t sound like he graduated…. can he go back to school and finish his degree, or switch to another one?
It’s really tough to be unemployed. And computer games are absolutely as sense of escape. He can *accomplish* things in games that he isn’t accomplishing in real life. So, he has to start accomplishing things in real life…. even if they weren’t what he thought he would be accomplishing at this point.
Post # 11
Thanks for the advice, ladies.
A few things that have been asked that were left out of the original post.
- We’ve been living with my parents the whole time he’s been unemployed but I have a full-time, work-from-home position. My job finances our mutual expenses (so that’s food, car insurance, phone).
- He’s in the science field. There are plenty of jobs to apply for but he lacks the initiative to find them. At this point, he’s cycled through all of his contacts, been to ever staffing agency, etc. All the “physical” things to do. He’s had a few “in’s” that haven’t turned into anything. In our area, it’s impossible to get a volunteer gig. My mother has been unemployed for over 2 years now and has spent the last year just trying to find unpaid volunteer work – everyone has too many applications/requests!
- We’ve talked about this. A lot. He says it’s hard. We’ve talked about him doing household chores – he does a handful. Hard as it is to believe, he wasn’t raised in a household where they did chores (I know, I’ve seen it first hand….) so getting him to do the dishes is a lot of “Because they need to be cleaned,” “But I’m not good at them – why do I have to do it,” “Because everyone needs to pitch into this household, that’s why,” “But I don’t get why I have to…”
- Going back to graduate school is not an option. The stipend he’d get wouldn’t even come close to supporting him and in his fields of science they’re forced to sign contracts that they can’t have any other job but graduate school.
Thanks again for the advice!