Homesteading Forum banner

1 - 20 of 45 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,794 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My husband has been a consultant for most of his professional life and usually has so much business he can't keep up with it. When we moved to ABQ shortly after 9/11 (we lived in Manhattan and before that Minneapolis).

Ever since then, he can't keep a job and recently he has been out of work for a full year, (and he has been looking for 2.5 years) with nothing coming through for him. He has done over 4000 hours of corporate training, has been a webmaster for two major universities on the East coast, has been a programmer, a graphic artist, and is good at what he does. He's driven and dedicated and energetic.

We have a piece of property we live on (not paid for yet, no equity as someone holds the paper on it) and an old, beat up, barely holding together single-wide. At least IT is paid for. We live on my salary plus his unemployment. The unemployment is running out next month.

My husband is incredibly desperate, depressed and wants out of life in general. He says he feels that if it weren't for the fact that he owes his father money, he would have taken his own life long ago. Yes, he is on anti-depressants and yes, he is under a doctors care.

My question is how do I keep this man motivated? How many times can I keep saying "Don't worry, things will get better. You will find a place to work and be valued." He's just so tired of the same old thing every day. Every day he sends out at least 2 resumes for current openings and he just keeps either being the "second choice" for a job, or gets no calls at all. Try doing this for over 2 years and see how you feel about yourself.

How do I keep him motivated, feeling like he is worth something, feeling good about himself? It's getting to the point where I'm in a funk myself regarding being so poor for so long and no end in sight. Even moving is not an option. We filed bankrputcy last year because of his inability to find a job. We have no savings. Zip. Not that I want to move, but we are trying to find answers.

Just kind of both at the end our ropes and I have to do everything I can from being depressed myself. I have to carry that load for both of us and be happy about it or it will affect him.

We are not religious folk but yesterday I told God "Thy will be done!" and gave it up to him because I'm out of ideas and motivation. My husband is a dyed-in-the-wool athiest so praying isn't something he'd do.)

NO idea what to do to maintain and not go under......
Any encouragement is welcome. I"m out of ideas for not crashing into that black, swirling vortex.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,355 Posts
Pat I will pray for both of you,if he is able, maybe some volunteer work would help keep his mind off the problems.I know its not easy to try and cheer a depressed person on,,,,but keep trying.God Bless and keep you.Things will be better.
 

·
proud to be pro-choice
Joined
·
2,691 Posts
Well it may be time to move back to MN or other areas with opportunities in his field. But alas he is a jack of all trades, master of nothing as Henry Ford would say. Does he have that all important piece of paper, e.g. college degree? While the paper itself means little as far as can a person actually DO anything, the trend is back to employers requiring a degree (in something).
From what I know about the climate in NM, doing outside work to tire out the body so the mind can rest/pump up some good endorphins with a sense of accomplishment is not the option it is farther north. IMHO, time to fish or cut bait. He needs stronger anti-depressants, a kick in the butt, or (and please don't take this wrong), to quit being a chicken boy re: his lack of will to live. And you know what, a job is just that, a job. So he doesn't get to be a computer programmer, suck it up and work at home depot, wally world etc. His behavior is reminding me of a small child - that no matter what you suggest, the child whines about it. So encourage him to either do some research on a new place to live (money magazine just published the best places to live so hop onto cnnmoney.com) OR go apply at the local big box. Some money is better than no money. And so you don't think I am totally insensitive, I've had an unemployed/underemployed spouse. When we got married, unemployment (1980s so the number is valid given manufacturing was king in our area) 25%. Had the ups and down with him being bummed out when I left for work in the morning. Warp ahead to today - he is self-employed but new housing is pretty dead and we refuse to borrow (we self-finance and have money tied up in an existing property). He grumps 1 - 4 times a day, mostly when the weather precludes him from working around our new (remodeled) house.
 

·
member
Joined
·
23,497 Posts
If his unemployment is running out, maybe he could look for a job, any job, outside of his field. Nothing wrong with working at Lowe's or Walmart, or the local gas station. If he starts bringing in some income he may feel better about himself. And if he is out there already employed he may hear of something more closely related to his field. I hope things work out for both of you soon.

If he absolutely can't find work, is there something he could do on the homestead to earn some money? Raise chickens, have a market garden, help local people with websites or resumes, learn to do income taxes?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,215 Posts
What Melissa said. You have to get and stay busy I think. If you can't do what you once did (because no openings are available), get busy doing something else. Best wishes that it works out OK for you (meaning both of you).
 

·
Nohoa Homestead
Joined
·
5,398 Posts
patnewmex said:
My husband has been a consultant for most of his professional life and usually has so much business he can't keep up with it. When we moved to ABQ shortly after 9/11 (we lived in Manhattan and before that Minneapolis).

Ever since then, he can't keep a job and recently he has been out of work for a full year, (and he has been looking for 2.5 years) with nothing coming through for him. He has done over 4000 hours of corporate training, has been a webmaster for two major universities on the East coast, has been a programmer, a graphic artist, and is good at what he does. He's driven and dedicated and energetic.

We have a piece of property we live on (not paid for yet, no equity as someone holds the paper on it) and an old, beat up, barely holding together single-wide. At least IT is paid for. We live on my salary plus his unemployment. The unemployment is running out next month.

My husband is incredibly desperate, depressed and wants out of life in general. He says he feels that if it weren't for the fact that he owes his father money, he would have taken his own life long ago. Yes, he is on anti-depressants and yes, he is under a doctors care.

My question is how do I keep this man motivated? How many times can I keep saying "Don't worry, things will get better. You will find a place to work and be valued." He's just so tired of the same old thing every day. Every day he sends out at least 2 resumes for current openings and he just keeps either being the "second choice" for a job, or gets no calls at all. Try doing this for over 2 years and see how you feel about yourself.

How do I keep him motivated, feeling like he is worth something, feeling good about himself? It's getting to the point where I'm in a funk myself regarding being so poor for so long and no end in sight. Even moving is not an option. We filed bankrputcy last year because of his inability to find a job. We have no savings. Zip. Not that I want to move, but we are trying to find answers.

Just kind of both at the end our ropes and I have to do everything I can from being depressed myself. I have to carry that load for both of us and be happy about it or it will affect him.

We are not religious folk but yesterday I told God "Thy will be done!" and gave it up to him because I'm out of ideas and motivation. My husband is a dyed-in-the-wool athiest so praying isn't something he'd do.)

NO idea what to do to maintain and not go under......
Any encouragement is welcome. I"m out of ideas for not crashing into that black, swirling vortex.
Your husband needs to understand that circumstances have changed drastically with regard to the job market and he needs to adapt. He needs to start looking for jobs "below" what he had been doing in the past. Albuquerque is a HUGE town and there are bazillions of jobs there! He needs to get off his duff and get one pronto! So what if he isn't making $60,000 a year (or more) doing what he did before. Getting a job will give his self esteem a boost and get him out of the doldrums. Once he feels like he is contributing to the family's income again he will feel a lot better about himself.

Since he will be holding a less demanding job (probably), this will give him an opportunity to perhaps do some vounteer work on the side. Working with a Hospice or senior services organization would be my suggestion. This will give him a greater appreciation for the fact that he is in good health and capable of taking care of himself and his family.

I just did a job search on Careerbuilder.com and there were over 800 jobs posted on there in Albuquerque. Surely, he can find *something* there. I hate to suggest this, but heck, even working at McDonalds would be better than sitting around feeling sorry for himself because he can't get a high-powered corporate gig. Time to eat a piece of humble pie, and get on with your life. I'd say.

donsgal
 

·
Big Front Porch advocate
Joined
·
44,851 Posts
Has he tried local/national contracting companies? A lot of the larger corp's are doing contract for a certain length of time, or contract to hire. He may have more success sending resumes there, including those out of state.

And as the others are saying, a job at Home Depot, etc will at least get him out in the business world interacting. I'd think Staples, Office Max, etc would be a good place as the places he would like to work use office supplies.

Angie
 

·
Turkey Wrangler
Joined
·
5,193 Posts
I will be praying for you both to get through this.
When we lost our business location a few years back dh was doing a small signs out of the house, he had a part time job driving a limo, he was in such a funk, so I know a little about what you are going through, he was self employed all his life and it was hard to get a job that paid anything close to what he could make on his own. It was a god-send that we found a new location when we did because he was starting to get mean.
Is there anything he can do out of the house, maybe ebay or some other home-based business, and to get him out of the house, a stop-loss job doing retail or something, anything?????

dh hated driving the limo, he also spent 6 mos. working at a retail job which he HATED.... but it got him out of the house, which was sooo important.

All the best to you and your hubby Pat, you seem like such a nice person.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,794 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Selena said:
Does he have that all important piece of paper, e.g. college degree? While the paper itself means little as far as can a person actually DO anything, the trend is back to employers requiring a degree (in something).
He is in the process of finishing up after a 28 year hiatus. But won't graduate until next fall.


Selena said:
He needs stronger anti-depressants, a kick in the butt, or (and please don't take this wrong), to quit being a chicken boy re: his lack of will to live. And you know what, a job is just that, a job. So he doesn't get to be a computer programmer, suck it up and work at home depot, wally world etc. His behavior is reminding me of a small child - that no matter what you suggest, the child whines about it.
I heartily agree! I keep saying that I would CHERISH him if he decided to be a woodworker (he does the most excellent, detail oriented work whether it is building something or laying hardwood floors.) His childish behavior is hard to combat and yes, there is a certain amount of "woe is me" that I find discouragaging and I just want to shake him and tell him to snap out of it. But tough love would only push him over the brink.

Selena said:
And so you don't think I am totally insensitive, I've had an unemployed/underemployed spouse.
I totally understand and don't think you are being insenstive. More like you are being practical and calling a spade a spade. I've always been the financial and moral, cheerleading backbone of our family. He has so much to GIVE and I wish he'd start working with his hands more. He is so happy when he does that. I've told him even if he is an electrician or something, he'll have a trade that he can use anywhere, in a large or small city. But, maybe he has to run this course of pursuing the big bucks computer stuff. I dont know.

Thanks for lending an ear and thanks for the other suggestions, everyone.

Pat

PS. One good thing is my job is as secure as you could ask for. I just got a raise, and a new laptop and lots of recognition and appreciation. But I can't share it with him. :( ah well, no sense in ME whining! :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,252 Posts
I know exactly where you are coming from myself. But with his background, can't he develop a business online? Like a consultant business of some sort? Or maybe copywriting since he is knowledgable in the corporate world? Even web design.

How do you keep him motivated? Well, I have gone through this same issue with my own husband who was a nonbeliever also. Except his issues wasn't about no job, but about becoming injured and having his right arm crushed. All of a sudden he could not do simple things that he has always done. It was not easy for him and then he lost his daughter. That was it. Talk about depression. It was hard for me too. Trying to stay up all the time for him.

But all that has changed in the last year and now we are still living very frugally, but I can honestly say religion did change our life. Now, my husband plays his guitar and sings at our church every Sunday. I never thought I'd get him into a church in my life time, let alone singing at one. Plus, he has just designed them a beautiful website. He's happy. And that's what counts.

The book, The Power Of Positive Thinking changed our thinking and is what got us on the right road. I read it aloud to him in the evenings and I think it sunk into both of us.

If there was any way I could help you I would gladly do so. If you just want to talk to someone, PM me anytime.

katlupe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,794 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I just might pick up that book you suggested, Katlupe! I've been hearing so much positive talk on the Oprah radio channel. We don't have TV, but do have XM radio for our entertainment. Really cheap. :)

There's so much information about positive thinking that does a body and a mind good. I 'll give it a try.
 

·
Be powerful. No other option exists.
Joined
·
38,813 Posts
I very highly recommend the books and tapes by Byron Katie. Her teaching of "The Work" unravels those negative thoughts.

Here's part of her website:
http://www.thework.com/thework.asp
 

·
El Paso
Joined
·
1,969 Posts
Pat,

You mention that your husband has extensive IT experience. Has he checked out USAJOBS? I know that the Federal Government is practically begging for experienced IT professions, they get not only the standard GS rate of pay but also qualify for an IT bonus. College degree not necessary if he has the appropriate certifications. (Brains are a bonus, but not mandatory , you should meet some of our Information Management Officers).

So, run a google search for USAJOBS, AVUE central, and CPOL.

If you have already explored this option, my apologies.

Nikki
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,752 Posts
Pat-

I really do empathize. We have been thru this so many times. I cannot list all the jobs DH has had that have turned to s***.

Has your DH posted on monster.com & indeed? I think it was Indeed.com where my DH finally found a great job.

Once when DH was out of work, he went to a local mens store & sold clothing. He was not satisfied w/this but it preserved his dignity. You can brainstorm & come up w/bunches of related jobs that your DH could do in a pinch such as this.

Congradulations on your raise, etc!! I also can relate to you not wanting to celebrate w/DH about this. It was very hard for me to talk about job accomplishments when DH had none. I was NOT a good 'breadwinner' & very stressed out whenever DH was out of work.

If he has not gone on line, please tell him to do so. And good luck, I'm praying for you both!

Patty
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
446 Posts
I grew up in Chicago, have a Bachelors in accounting and owned my own business. When I moved to SW WI it was IMPOSSIBLE for me to find an 'appropriate' job in this area. They tend to not hire 'outsiders'. I went to work as a vet tech, became frustrated with the quality of care in the area, so I got my CVT and drove 100 miles each way to work in emergent medicine in Madison for 4 years until the drive wore me down. So I understand the frustration of the job market for what they perceive as over qualified workers.
I went back to bartending and it was the best decission that I could have made! For me, it is the best possible job for a homesteader. I get the down-low on all the deals for livestock (lots of free poultry, cheap hay and straw, equipment, 3 -quarter milk cows........) and I sell eggs, produce, canned goods and canning services to my customers. I also have the use of a certified kitchen when I need it. I work nights and my husband works days so the farm isn't left alone for long periods. Best of all I make, with tips, on average more than the base wages of the area. There is no overtime, paid days off or insurance, but DH has those through his job.
Now I am not saying this is for everyone, but the point I would like to make is that sometimes a percieved step down in employement actually can turn out to be a better deal than you expect. I went to bartending as a temporary fix, but now I don't want to do anything else. It may not have the prestige one would expect from someone with my education and background, but it is something that I enjoy AND the income is better than most think. Hope he finds something that he can enjoy and profit from.

Dianne
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,001 Posts
Pat,
I would encourage him to get involved in some sort of work, even if it is "beneath" him and in a totally unrelated field, examples might be animal control officer, clerk at the county court's office, landscape laborer. Just getting out and doing SOMETHING will improve his mindset. Depression and the woe-is-me's get worse if you don't break out of your depressed routine. The best thing you can do is not take his depressed mood personally and take it upon yourself to suggest outings to new and interesting places that will help him see that life is there for the embracing! I've been on both sides of this situation and I can say from personal experience that it does get better, but part of making that happen is believing that it will and knowing that depression is a cycle that you can become aware of and control.
 

·
Zone 7B
Joined
·
2,481 Posts
donsgal said:
Your husband needs to understand that circumstances have changed drastically with regard to the job market and he needs to adapt. He needs to start looking for jobs "below" what he had been doing in the past. donsgal
My DH is 51 and had a very hard time realizing this VERY concept..... He doesn't "transition" well and was convinced his age would stop him...... unless he stuck to his FIELD..... it literally scared the snot out of him to think about doing ANYTHING ELSE!

donsgal said:
So what if he isn't making $60,000 a year (or more) doing what he did before. Getting a job will give his self esteem a boost and get him out of the doldrums. Once he feels like he is contributing to the family's income again he will feel a lot better about himself.donsgal
It took my DH 30 years to get to make this kind of money... and when he walked away from his job in TX last year and the money, it scared the crap outta him!!! He kept thinking that the only way he would be of any use to our family was if he was making $55,000 again!! But I just kept reminding him that I promised to love him if he made $55,000 or $20,000..... it didn't matter.... I loved him NO MATTER HOW MUCH HE MADE!! *This "conditional" love was ingrained in him by his father.... "A man's value is only determined by how much $$ they make in life"..... Sad, but true..... :( (and of course the ex wives who were never content with ANY amount made... it was never ENOUGH!)

donsgal said:
This will give him a greater appreciation for the fact that he is in good health and capable of taking care of himself and his family.
donsgal
After working at a very PHYSICAL job for the last 7 months for about 1/3 of what he was making, my DH has gained a new found energy (lost 40# and 3 pant sizes) and is happier than he ever thought possible... (I am sure if he had stayed at his TX job, he would have had a heart attack/stroke by now!)

donsgal said:
...... working at McDonalds would be better than sitting around feeling sorry for himself because he can't get a high-powered corporate gig. donsgal
DH spent ALOT of time feeling inept, insecure and ashamed about his inability to find work.... (alot of it was our LOCATION) Once we were in a better location, DH found work right away and he is like a new man...... I can honestly remember DH telling me he would NEVER work at McD's but after the unemployment ran out and we were flat broke and had NO WHERE to go..... he slowly began to realize its not about where HE wants to go to work or the fact that God wasn't answering his desperate prayers, but where the Lord wants him to go.... and once he started LISTENING to the Lord..... he found that sense of peace and calm that I had been telling him about....

We had to change our plans.... we are selling our property in MO (dream was to retire there) and we know that we will eventually retire out here... and while it may have set us back a few years having to start over..... we will, with the Lord's help, make it happen......(at this point, I am just glad to be making it month to month - retirement has taken a backseat for at least a few years) We'll eventually end up out on the farm again, if its the Lord's plan for us.....

I can honestly say that DH ate a HUGE slice of that HUMBLE PIE in the last year and he is a better man because of it..... (and it didn't even taste as bad as he expected!) :)

I wish I had the secret answer.... there were times I didn't think we'd make it... but only by God's grace did we..... and I will pray for you and your husband as well... that you make it through this difficult time and that your DH can find peace in this storm.... Continue to cherish your DH... love him with your whole heart.... and tell him a million times a day if necessary.... (I found that "tough love" didn't work for us... it made him even more insecure and he started to get mean and nasty......(even if his childish behaviors made me want to paddle his rear!!) :)
 
1 - 20 of 45 Posts
Top