Let me start by saying I’m a lucky woman – I’ve found someone kind and considerate, who makes me laugh and is entertaining and charming and who comes in to snuggle me before I go to bed even if he’s not going to sleep himself. There’s just one big problem – he has no job. Part of it is my doing – I encouraged him to quit his job in December without having something lined up, which goes against my usual advice. However, the people he worked for were terrible; I have a high bullshit threshold and these people went way past it. He once went to them with a complaint of sexual harassment by a female client – which made him profoundly and understandably uncomfortable – and they LAUGHED at him and told him he should be flattered! Fuck that noise, I said. So he left and I thought he was entitled to a nice Christmas to get over the frankly abusive practices he’d been dealing with. I thought once we hit January he’d start looking and everything would be fine, but no go. Then February. Then March. That’s when I started getting nervous. I’m pretty good at writing resumes so I helped him with his (by which I mean I wrote it entirely). I tried to be supportive – I wrote him lists of places to call and apply to, I helped him with cover letters and went over what he could say in interviews. But still, no progress. He has a history of low self-esteem issues that I understand, having suffered similar issues myself. He’s convinced that his lack of education will hold him back and that spirals into him being worthless and then he feels like he’s not good enough for me and then generally ends in massive fight that upsets both of us for days. He seems to only be able to hit the panic button on hard issues. It’s like:
Can’t get job = I’m stupid and terrible = I’m the worst human being ever = girlfriend must want to leave me = why bother with making any changes = depression
Don’t have job -> try to get job -> maybe fail to get job for a little while -> eventually get job -> everything’s fine.
It feels like I’ve tried everything: being supportive, getting mad/depressed (not in a manipulative way, I was just legitimately those things by turns) but I don’t know what to do. I come home and he’s spent the day watching TV or playing video games or doing his favorite hobby, and those things make him happy, which I love, but I feel like I’m not really getting a fair deal.
I make enough money to cover the rent (barely) so any other expenses are being covered by money I inherited. When I told him about it months ago we discussed it being used for our wedding and a house and vacations, etc. but now we’re blowing through it at a rate I’m not comfortable with. He has big dreams and likes to talk about what we’d do if he won the lottery and how I wouldn’t have to work – but I actually like working. I don’t need him to be a millionaire, I just want him to be my partner. He’s my one and I’m in too deep to leave this situation but I’m looking down the barrel of a 50+ year partnership with me being the responsible one and I don’t think I like who that might turn me in to.
All I want is to know how to help him see that it’s not the end of the world – he just has to do some work!
Them Money Troubles