I’m not gonna lie, when I first met my boyfriend, I liked the fact that he was going to be a lawyer. As a freelance writer with a completely unstable source of income, it was good to know that someone in the relationship wouldn’t be living paycheck to paycheck and could spring for more than Chinese food delivery once in awhile. So even when he graduated without a guaranteed job, I felt strangely comforted, thinking that the tough economy would pass and that he would find something soon. Soon turned into almost a year, and while we’re both somehow staying financially afloat, our relationship is about to sink.
I think the main issue is I’m a problem solver. I need a job, I am on job sites every day, I send my resume to everyone I know, I cold call companies I’m interested in to see if they’re hiring. But when I suggest these tactics to my boyfriend, he gets extremely defensive like I’m trying to run his life and reminds me that our industries are completely different. I know he’s starting to think of me as a nag, but it’s hard for me to watch him be so defeatist and not make every effort to find a full-time job. He assures me that he’s looking, but it seems like he’d rather complain about no good jobs being out there than take a less-than-perfect job in the meantime. I’m trying really hard to be sympathetic and encouraging, but it’s too hard for me not to get involved, especially when I worry that if I don’t help, he’ll just never find anything.
To make matters worse, our sex life is coming to a stand-still. Despite the fact that he isn’t working all day, he always seems too tired to hook up. When I ask him about it, he turns it on me, saying that I’m not as much fun to be around because I’m always lecturing him about work. Once, he admitted to feeling inadequate, but even though I’ve done my best to assure him that I love him no matter what he does for a living, it hasn’t solved the problem. I really want this relationship to work (for richer or for poorer, as they say), but I’m not sure we can handle another year of him not working. Is there any way to help him on the job front without seeming like a nudge? Should I just back off and hope for the best? Is anyone else going through something similar?
GIRL TALK TIME: What would you do in this Staffer’s situation? Have you dealt with a similar problem? What happened?