My husband has been unemployed for 5 1/2 months. Thank God he is a non-drinker. Well, to be quite honest, he has a drink maybe once or twice a year, or at a special occasion. The reason this makes me happy is that I can deal with an unemployed husband, but not one that is a drinker.
Here’s why. First of all, I was married to a scam artist who, when we moved, assured me he was looking for work every single day.
I took my own money and opened a small studio and began to teach fitness. After a over a year passed, one day one of my students asked me, “Why is it you work so hard when your husband sits in the bar all day long? I live near it and his truck is always there!”
Gulp! I had no clue. He could hold his booze and disguise the smell (he drank vodka) and I just wouldn’t have dreamed he was a lying bum. Well, later, I learned he was a full on drunkard (I tried to drink with him to slow him down – it just sped me up!) To make this story short – ultimately he scammed me out of everything, I lost the farm I’d worked for 12 years to buy, and wound up
getting a divorce. It’s a good thing he wasn’t bright enough to go to an attorney and try to get alimony from me. I was working. He
Anyway, I’ve been talking with friends and acquaintances, even strangers all over town, you know like the store and the post office.
I am hearing horror stories. I would say 3 out of 5 women I speak to whose husband’s have been off work for a while are going
through a similar problem….the drinking problem.
We know it is disheartening to be unemployed and not be able to support a family. Particularly for someone with children, or with a wife that doesn’t work. It’s the boredom, the free time, the insecurity, the luring nature of having a drink to “take off the edge” that scares me for these families.
The seductive nature of alcohol is that temptation (after all it is social and legal) to have a second drink because the first one made you feel so good. Then perhaps another, just to be social. The ball is rolling now.
Good men can get caught up in this downward spiral.
It is a VERY DANGEROUS cycle….I know from personal experience that alcohol, like any drug, has a cumulative effect – I’ve experienced lies about alcohol, which means maybe lies about where a person has been, which means maybe they are not looking for work, which means one lie leads to another. If a person has a blackout there is a huge danger. You don’t want the unemployed person to have to drink and get into that “fake world” where everyone is your best friend and you all tell each other how great you are – just to regain some confidence. Drinking and driving is another peril. Not even taking into consideration the cost of the alcohol. These days two drinks is the same cost as if you went to the store and bought a bottle! I had this joker have an affair with my best friend during this period of my own STUDPIDITY!
I am not writing this to freak anyone out, but we are ALL FLAWED human beings. I just want to make people aware of the pitfalls that face so many people with an unemployed husband or mate. It is important for you to be on your toes if “things” seem to be changing. Be supportive and do understand it’s tough right now, perhaps even turn the unemployed person on to a job you heard about / or suggest going to an employment office to do part time work / or if you come up with a terrific idea, maybe a career change or a school loan to learn a new career – share it.
In my experience a man can only stay home so long (particularly with children) before he starts going stir crazy! He needs to perform and be secure in his ability to provide for his family….It is difficult enough to contend with little money to live on. You don’t want everything to fall apart.
Remember, too, a man may not want to share his insecurity, his concern, his feeling of failure.
Do what you can and keep praying! Take a breath – this too shall pass :)
By the way - THIS IS NOT TO WORRY ABOUT ALL MEN! There are some really good guys out there who can
deal with tough situations beautifully. This is just a reminder we are all human and perhaps insight to help if you can during these hard times for those with a genetic connection to alcohol – and those who simply fall into the pit by circumstance.
” Nothing good comes from boredom. It’s said that idle hands are the devil’s workshop, an old saying dating at least as far back as Chaucer in the twelfth century who called idle hands the devil’s tools.”
“The Turks have a proverb, which says, that _The devil tempts all other men, but that idle men tempt the devil. (Colton, _Lacon_, 1820)”