Losing a Job and Saving Your Marriage
We know all too well how unstable the economy is right now, and that means jobs are in jeopardy. When one spouse loses a job, it can have serious effects on the marriage relationship, even potentially leading to a marriage crisis. While job loss by itself presents a very difficult challenge, it can magnify or multiply marriage issues. It is especially important to focus on strengthening your marriage during the inevitable tough financial circumstances. Don’t be caught off guard by the stress that finance in marriage can cause in the midst of job loss. It’s time to be proactive, not reactive to the situation.
If you have lost your job-or, for that matter, even if you are still working-talk to your spouse about what happens next. Be very open about your financial situation. Unfortunate surprises about money are never welcome. Many marriage problems stem from financial woes that are caused by ineffective communication. If you and your spouse communicate openly and clearly regarding where you stand financially, you will be much more likely to formulate a viable plan of action.
If you have lost your job, be understanding of your spouse’s fears, uncertainties and anger. Understand that it is normal for your spouse to have these feelings; don’t you? And understand that there will be times when your spouse may seem to blame and be angry at you. Though this displaced blame and anger is hurtful, understand that it is normal. If the chairs were reversed, you may do the same. If you understand, it will be easier to forgive, talk about it, and take advantage of the situation to make your marriage relationship grow stronger. Finally, be understanding of and open-and honest-with your spouse about your own feelings. It is normal to have fears, uncertainties and anger. Redirect these very real and strong feelings into positive action, not into bringing on a marriage crisis.
While losing your job is hard, don’t view it as entirely negative. You and your spouse can talk about opportunities this new freedom might present. For example, maybe one of you can go back to school to pursue a new career, or maybe you can start a small business from home. If possible, you can also discuss the option of relocation to a region that might hold more employment potential for you. Save your marriage from falling victim to a layoff. Come together and discuss how to make the most of an uncertain situation. Hard economic times are bad enough; don’t let the loss of a job become a source of marriage problems.
Don’t lose hope
Stress can often pile up just from the responsibilities we have every day, even without the shock of losing a job and the resulting marriage issues. If these things become too much to bear, remember that there is professional marriage help available. Thousands of couples each year look to marriage professionals and workshops for help in dealing with problems brought on by financial burdens.