Dear Dave: My husband was laid off three months ago, and I'm afraid we're about to lose our home. I've been working three part-time jobs to help keep our heads above water, but he says the economy's bad, and he's waiting for the "right" job. The bills are piling up, and I don't know what to do.
When a guy loses a job it's a devastating blow. Many guys are task oriented and define themselves by what they do rather than who they are. That's not a good thing.
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When I went broke several years ago, I had to re-define myself my own mind. I lost my business, and in many ways I looked at that company as who I was. My identity was suddenly gone. Lots of guys go through that when they lose their jobs, and in the process they can lose the courage to go fight again.
I think you two should sit down with your pastor or a good marriage counselor and talk through this thing. I also think your husband needs a good friend – someone he admires and respects – to verbally knock him around a little and put the fight back into his spirit. Three months of a guy sitting on his butt in this situation is unacceptable. I don't want to hear a bunch of stuff about the economy, a career path or that he's overqualified. It doesn't matter if you're delivering pizzas or mowing yards, you're never "overqualified" to be a man and take care of your responsibilities!
Sometimes people need a little time to get their heads together when something traumatic happens. I went through some of that, too. There were times when I was just no good to anyone. But at the end of the day I didn't lose my home because I was sitting around doing nothing. Even when I lost all my confidence and felt like a dog, I still got out there and did stuff to put food on the table.
It's time for your husband to get out and do something!