Spouses who don't work

@mlhuff12 (800)
United States
October 18, 2007 5:11pm CST
Now adays it is really hard for a family or even just a couple to be able to live on one income. Especially when the person who does work doen't make much to begin with. Well I was that person. "Was". I made about $19,000 and my husband had no job, and for some reason could not find one. Or if he did after a couple of days they'd fire him. So I was working hard all week, every week. While the husband is at home secretly spending most of what I make on sports T-shirts. After his shopping sprees, we could almost not afford to pay our bills. And we couldn't afford groceries. So we never had much food at the house. So tell me...If you were in this position, how long do you think it would take for you to finally decide that the marriage isn't working? 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?
4 people like this
16 responses
@missybal (4492)
• United States
19 Oct 07
I'd like more information please... 1.) how long have you been together counting married and dating? 2.) How much of that time has he worked? 3.) Do you have any children together or seperate? 4.) How long have you been married? 5.) Do you or your husband pay the bills every month and I mean writing the checks and sending mailing it? If you haven't left him yet here is what I would do. Open an account in your name only for your paychecks. Take control of paying all the bills. Get rid of all Credit Cards that have both your's and your husband's name on them. Only have Credit Cards in your name only and in a place where he can't get it. Do the grocery shopping yourself so you know that you are getting food in the house. Only give your husband an allowance to cover him if he really needs money or filling his gas tank. Take total control because you make the money. If he fights you on this and whats to spend more you tell him get a job and make him own money or get out if you don't like living on a tight budget. I'm a stay at home wife and even I find ways to make what I can and I am very careful about the money I spend. My husband makes the main income we live on but I've discovered that by doing all I can to save money I'm making more by being home for my husband. Any one man or woman if they do not bring in money should be doing all they can to save money and make life a little easier for the person who is working. Does he do things around the house??? The dishes, the laundry, cooking dinner??? If he doesn't then he isn't even trying. Make sure that he doesn't pull you down with him no matter how much you love him you need more than love to have a marriage. You need understanding and respect and when he blows your paycheck on stupid junk he is not repecting you and marriage means you work together. If you do all this and he still doesn't straighten up after two months I would kick him out. Then if in the next two he doesn't do it either I would file seperation papers. I couldn't put up with that. Even if he only gets a job a fast food restaurant he could be helping. He needs to find something. I'm guessing he thinks he deserves a great job and that he doesn't want to work for minimum wage. My husband thought like that at one time and didn't want to work unless he could get something for being a college graduate. It took awhile for me to get through to his head that being a college graduate doesn't guarentee you a good paying job and you have to do what you have to do to survive. Good luck to you and please don't let him push you around.
@Kowgirl (3492)
• United States
19 Oct 07
Missybal has said everything I would have said so I wont waste time repeating it. Any job is better than no job at all. Best of luck
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
23 Oct 07
Married 2 years. Dating maybe 3 years. He had a job when I met him. Held that one for 8 years til the business went out of business. Found a job in a month and held that for a year. Was fired the month that we got married. I got another job that he held for a couple of months. Then after that he could not find a job, and if he did he couldn't keep it...Sometimes he does stuff around the house, but not often. Just cooking dinner and doing the dishes maybe once or twice a week. Whenever I come home from work he is usually sleeping or watching tv. Not really doing anything. Him not finding a job wasn't all of our problems. He wouldn't every express to me how he feels or even talk to me much. And he never spent any time with my family. And family is very important to me. So after 2 years. I finally had enough of it. I did leave him. I didn't kick him out though because the house is technically his grandfathers. So I moved in with my mom with my dog and cat. I am a lot happier now. Less Stress. And feel like that I will have a better life.
@missybal (4492)
• United States
23 Oct 07
Sounds like you gave him plenty of time to shape up. I'm glad you got out. It's kinda odd that he was able to hold a job for 8 years not even get fired from it however once you were married those two years only worked a couple of months out of all of it. Any idea how he is doing without you? Is your divorce final? Did he get a job now that he doesn't have you paying his way?
• Canada
19 Oct 07
I am a little short on patience; I am also a little dumb so I would have to say 2 years I'm done and out of there. I am wincing at the thought of what your answer is to this question.
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
23 Oct 07
2 years as well. though we were only married 2 years. But I was sick and tired and being sick and tired
• Canada
23 Oct 07
High Five to you! Two years isn't to bad really it shows you cared, yet smart enough to reckonize he didn't! Good for you!
@zidlore (251)
• Philippines
18 Oct 07
I think the question should not be how long do you think it would take for you to finally decide that the marriage isn't working. It should be How long will it take us to change our habits. First, everything has a reason, so if your spouse can't land on a stable job, something is wrong. Why not talk to him and ask him why? Or help him know the real situation. Then, since you are the breadwinner, you have the right to control the family's funds. Be strict with it. If you find some money lost, ask them, if they said they got it, ask them why. Well, if your husband can't get a hold of those money, he will be forced to work because he can't get his shopping sprees. Well, good luck!
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
19 Oct 07
Believe me, we had a lot of talks. Mainly about the same thing and it never got through to him. I just hope that he won't stop looking for a job. Or give up hope on himself and have faith that something will change for the better.
@zidlore (251)
• Philippines
19 Oct 07
Okay. I'll pray for the two of you's happiness. Thanks for sharing!
@modstar (9615)
• Philippines
25 Dec 08
I don't know. If i'm your husband who has no work maybe the best i can do is to support you all throughout without really needing money for my sports tshirt. I mean i'm the "low maintenance" type of guy. I don't care if my shirt is old or something. I would be really embarrassed because all i can do is to be your lover and i can't help out financially. Maybe you'll realize that the marriage is not working maybe two years, the first year is the adjustment period while the second year is the evaluation period.
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
25 Dec 08
Thank you for your comment. It has been a while since I had posted that discussion. Since then I have gotten a divorce and enjoying life more than I have ever during my marriage.
@mypeace (395)
• Nigeria
23 Oct 07
l have dated someone who never wanted to take to advise and do something productive for his life. What you did is really the best option, atleast if he doesnt see money to squander maybe he will get up from his slumber and look for a job and business to do.
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
24 Oct 07
I want to thank everybody for their opinions, they have helped me deal with it and feel that i made the right decision. :)
@colgirl (77)
19 Oct 07
Did you see any signs of this before you were married? if you did this would have been a warning sign of things to come. Marriage wouldn't change things if he'd always been a bit workshy. I personally wouldn't have much respect for a man who didn't want to work or where i was forced into being the breadwinner so i wouldn't stick in the marriage for even a year.
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
23 Oct 07
Well, when I met him he had a job that he held for over 8 years. Until they went out of business. He found another job in a month. He worked there for a year until he got fired, which happened to be the same month we were to get married. So we got married and here we are. Before he got married, he held a job. Always went to work. He didn't waste his money. So something happened, maybe mid life crises. Can you have a mid life crisis at age 27?!
• India
19 Oct 07
I think this is absolutely unfair o your part if you are struggling hard for making a living and your husband is being so insensitive towards you and your efforts. If you try and keep the relationship sweet for some days, I am sure you will not be able to stretch it for years. In every relationship there has to be a balance which seems to be lacking in yours. You should talk to him and make things very clear and if he still does not understand, you will have to look the other way.
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
23 Oct 07
I was hoping it would get better and I realized that after all this time he would not change...In my parents marriage, the last 10-15 years she was unhappy. And I made a decision that I didn't want to make the same mistake that she did. And I am still young, I still have a chance for true happiness. And I felt that I would be happier alone than if I was stuck in that marriage.
@kodie420 (872)
• Canada
18 Oct 07
Well you know what your wedding vows say right? For richer or poorer. I know how you feel in one way except I'm that guy sitting at home when my girlfriend is working. I hate this not being able to get a job here and before we met and started going out I had a really good job paying 20 dollars an hour and I lived all alone. When we meet we lived 4 hours a part and she hated driving to my place and I don't drive so I would have to take a 6-7 hour bus ride. Well we did this for a little while like maybe a few months then she basically said if I didn't move closer it was going to be harder to see each other. Silly me I dropped my job of 8 years and my apartment to move in with her and her 3 kids. I'm having nearly an impossible time finding work here that its just depressing. I sit here all day answer and sending resume for jobs and all I get back and crappy jobs for 7 bucks an hour. I have tried a few of these but they are through employment centers and people work us hard and treat us like crap and make us work 12-14 hours doing nasty jobs for 7 bucks an hour when others get at least 14. Every job here is through employment centers. Its been 3 years now and I don't know exactly how my girlfriend feel buts I'm ready to move back where I came from because in a split second I would be back t work down there. So I don't know if your husband is just lazy (No Offence) or if maybe he is stuck in a rut like me but personally seek help before divorce if you guys are only fighting over money. Good luck!
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
19 Oct 07
I'm not that shallow, there are other reasons for leaving than money. I feel trust is very important, and I just didn't trust him anymore, he lied about a lot of little and big things. And other things to.
• Canada
18 Oct 07
That is a really tough position to be in--there you are working yourself to a frazzle and hubby spends your hard earned money! Did you try sitting him down to find out why he does what he does? How come he keeps getting fired? Some people just don't want to work and find lots of ways to get themselves fired. If I were you and I am not liking the answers I get when I ask the questions, it's buh-bye, Charlie!!! It won't even be a "year," either. Try "months"!
@mlhuff12 (800)
• United States
19 Oct 07
For me it was months too, but I was afraid so I didn't act till one to one and a half years later. But through that whole time of hoping things would change when they didn't. That was always in the back of my mind. But I am a lot happier...It kinda felt like he was bringing me down. And no I do feel quite a bit better about my self.
• Malaysia
19 Oct 07
My mom was the breadwinner of the family whilst my dad just laze the life away and also womanizing.. She put up with it since we were kids, and now we're all growned up now... She prolly went through it for 20 years.. She saved her money, did all she can do get some odd jobs here and there, and the great thing about her is that, she saved a lot of money and we have never starve before in our lives, our fridge is never empty, there's always food, (she always come home after work and cooks dinner, sometimes she wakes up in the morning to cook breakfast/lunch) And she washes the clothes every 2 days. Mind you, she has 5 children and 1 bum. That's a lot of clothes, and a lot of mouths to feed. I'm proud to say that my mother went through all the years and actually put all 5 of us into colleges to get degrees. I'm telling you this, as a story, maybe to make you stronger if you decide that you love him so much that you can't leave him. =) I do so hope you get through this. Take care.
@ellie26 (4128)
• Malaysia
19 Oct 07
I was in your situation a few years back. During those years, I was the breadwinner and also the housekeeper. I was not making enough money and my husband was very selective when comes to job offer. Things got even worse because my husband didn't approve when I worked overtime. Money was tight and debts were piling up. We argued almost everyday. I almost gave up on my marriage because I was not able to handle the pressure from my husband, children and financial burden. But I thought if I quit this marriage, will it solve my problem? Will I be able to do things better? The uncertainties made me stayed on. I did some adjustment, I quit my job. Then finally realizing the severity of our financial commitment, my husband started to look for jobs and he was lucky enough to land a job as a Sales Manager. Today, I am a full time housewife and still married. The keyword is "Shape up or shipped out".
@aowaow (1517)
• Indonesia
19 Oct 07
Nothing can be sure of how long of this marriage will be stood still. Even in normal family can face a same condition of separated. You had done all your best part, you had giving too much. In this scenario, separation is the only solution.
@lyndee22 (1211)
• Philippines
19 Oct 07
I am very thankful because my husband is very understanding when it comes to money matters. He is jobless right now but always do his best to look or do something fruitful. He is not a big spender even when he was working and earning. He doesn't depend on me. I give him an amount as an allowance but he used it in buying some foods or groceries. I think it is how you prioritize things and spoling your husband is not a good practice ever. Remember that there are more important than his sports shirts and your earning is not enough to cover them. Sacrifice something to more valuable thing.
• China
19 Oct 07
As a single group,in my view marriage has been a terrible
• Philippines
19 Oct 07
I understand your situation. I don't have a husband but I have a boyfriend. I'm the one who's working because he is still studying. He always borrow money from sometimes he never pays it and sometimes he only pay half of it. But I have lots of expenses like bills and debts. I always explain it to him but I think that he never understands my situation and by next month I have to resign to my job because I have to study. It's okay for me to resign from my job but my problem is I never saved any money.
• United States
19 Oct 07
when my husband and i decided to get married and have children I made it very clear to him that untill the youngest child is old enough to be home by their self while we work ONLY one will work. I didnt care which one weather he stayed home or i stayed home. My youngest is 8 years old so we still have about 5 more years to struggle. I am my own kids mom currently but in years past my husband was his own kids dad. If you dont have any children there should be no reason other then possibly being disabled for not working. I have worked for several places where even the disabled can work as well so even that isnt the best excuse. if you are tired of him not holding down a job tell him he has so many months to get a job and then he will be on probation for how ever long you want to have it and if he doesnt get a job in that time or hold down the job for the probation period hes not commited enough to the relationship and its time to stop wasting your time and move on ... make sure he is aware that you intend to fallow through with the decision you made