Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Blog Share Post

Here is the post from the blog share participant.  Here is the list of all the blog's participating again:
The Time for Change
Bright Yellow World
Reflections in the Snow-Covered Hills
Totally Serial
Daily Tannenbaum
Andrea Unplugged
From Kim's Desk
Rediscovering Me
Mama Bub
Being Five
Nothing Is Easier Than Self-Deceit
Molly's Musings
Did I Say That Outloud?
The Reluctant Grownup
And You Know What Else
Thinking Some More

Enjoy the post!

Let’s say you’ve been with your significant other for a long time. A REALLY long time. Nine years. You’re not married or engaged, but you’ve lived with him for about five years. You are very much in love with him. Among his many great qualities: He’s hyper-intelligent. He’s always able to make you laugh. He shares the same taste in books, movies, and music that you do, for the most part. He treats you well – he doesn’t go overboard with romantic gestures, but occasionally will bring you flowers for no reason. He goes out of his way to be kind and generous to your family. You’re as close to his family as you are to your own. You hardly ever fight. You share political views. This person is family to you.

There’s only one problem, but it’s a big one: He doesn’t have a job. Hasn’t had one for years. He applies for jobs here and there, but you know he’s not really making an effort, and he lacks a concrete plan for what to do with his life, career-wise.

Now, answer me this: Am I crazy?

This is the single biggest problem in my life. For the past nine years, my attitude has been that I shouldn’t get rid of a person with so many great qualities, including the fact that I love him, because he has this one problem. The problem is fixable. Right? But now it’s been nine years, and I’m starting to wonder if the problem will ever go away. I’m fine with not being married or planning for kids right now, but I do want those things in the future, and I’m getting this creeping feeling that it’s never going to happen.

I’m too old to be wasting my time with someone who doesn’t want the same things I do. He says he does, but with a lack of action on his part to make these things happen, I’m wondering if I even believe him anymore. Yes, I’ve expressed all this to him, but he just shuts down when this topic comes up.

I’m not the type to give ultimatums, and I don’t want to nag him. I’m not his mother. On the other hand, I’m sick of waiting for him to figure this out, I’m constantly embarrassed, and this problem needs to go away.

What say you? Am I crazy for being with a guy without a job? Would you be with someone who’s really great but unemployed?


-R- said...

I wouldn't break up with someone for being unemployed. But I would break up with someone for being unemployed for five years with no plans to become employed. I don't think you can expect someone to change at that point. But I wouldn't blame someone else for staying with that guy. It's your life! I just hope you don't miss out on things you want because someone else can't get it together.

Megan said...

I think it's obvious that this is a problem for you. I also think it's not going to change. That means you either need to decide that it's not going to be a problem, or move on.

Man, that sucks to say. But if this is an issue for you now, it's going to keep being an issue. And it only gets harder after you have kids.


Heather said...

How does he feel about the notion of being a house husband/stay at home dad when children come along in future? Because if he doesnt want to work outside the home then he sure is gonna have to work inside the home. If he cooks and cleans and does other things that make your working life easier then that's ok to me...provided you're earning enough for you both to be comfortable.

Michelle said...

I wouldn't be able to stay with him. Sorry :(

Anonymous said...

Well, do you support him financially? If not, no big deal. If so, big deal.

Kim said...

I recently got out of a relationship with someone who has struggled greatly in the employment field. A good portion of our relationship (3.5 years) was spent on unemployment or very little employment. Currently he is unemployed. It is definitely a HUGE strain on a relationship. It's one of the reasons we broke up, but strangely enough not because of me. It was his idea, he couldn't handle that I was successful. So no, you're not crazy to be with someone that is unemployed. As long as it's not too negatively affecting things that is.

Anonymous said...

I think people can change - to an extent. But it sounds like this guy is stuck and may never be able to change.

While I don't believe any potential partner is ever 100% perfect, I do think that there are some things that are deal breakers. And if you can't picture yourself supporting him into your old age... Well maybe this is a deal breaker for you.

Becky said...

I think it depends. If you were ok with supporting both of you and he was ok staying home with children after you had them, then I don't think it would be a problem, and like Heather said you just would need to accept that that's how it is going to be.
If he isn't ok with that idea, or you aren't, then you need to act on how things are now. We can't change other people; they can only change themselves. I'm not really one for ultimatums either, but in this situation that might be what it takes for him to realize that it's important to you. Not a "you need to get a job in the next month or I'm gone!" style, but more "It is important to me that you show with your actions that you want the same [big picture] things I do, and part of that is becoming employed somewhere. I would like to see you working seriously toward that goal." Maybe that means going to school to learn a trade, or taking a job that he previously felt was "below" him so he can get work experience. But he should show some effort.
In my opinion, anyway.

Bree said...

Only you can decide if this works for you. But there are definitely some questions that need answering. What is going to do if you have kids? Are you willing to be with him knowing you will always have to work because he doesn't care too? There are no perfect partners out there, but you have to decide if you can live with his imperfections.

NGS said...

I couldn't personally stay with a guy who is chronically unemployed, but I am not you. It comes down to your priorities and if this is a deal breaker for you. But if it is a deal breaker, you need to get out of that relationship fast because nine years is too long. Waiting nine years for someone to get a job so you can get married and have kids? Nine years is a long time to wait for progress.

Anonymous said...

Ask my ex husband. I left him after over 3 years of supporting him while he sat at home and played world of warcraft.
It sounds like you haven't even really talked about it - that's another problem all of its own.
All the best. I wish you plenty of luck that sadly I feel you will need.

Sra said...

I would be ok being with some who is unemployed as long as he had some ambition and purpose in life. Sitting around playing video games and allowing the house to be a mess would not cut it for me. It sounds like your situation is bothering you, and I agree that it will continue to do so and may even get worse if something doesn't change. Maybe your boyfriend needs to hear that. Being unemployed can be a self-defeating cycle. It can be very depressing on one's ego. Maybe your boyfriend needs to understand that he could lose you if he doesn't get his stuff together. He could at least try getting a part time gig to ease his way back in.

Laura said...

Actions speak louder than words. He says he wants the same things as you but does nothing for YEARS to make those things happen? And then shuts down whenever you want to get real about it and won't acknowledge that there's a problem here with his actions? I think staying with him means you're in for a lifetime of this. He has a motivation problem. He probably does want the same things as you, in a "big dreamer" kind of a way, but he isn't willing to do what it takes to make them happen. Can you live with that? If so, then stay with him. If not, then get out. Sooner rather than later.

I just broke up with my boyfriend of a year and a half for virtually the same reason. We've never had any money for our whole relationship because I am starting my own business and just barely make enough to support myself at this stage. I'm not in a position to support someone else, and he just isn't capable of supporting himself. I need an adult with more of a go-getter attitude than that. I don't want to be a mother to my partner. So I got out... it was a dealbreaker for me.