My wonderful boyfriend of two years and I are planning to get married. We’re both in our early twenties. The problem: he doesn’t have a job. In the past two years, he’s done some work for his family but he didn’t receive any money for it (he was supposed to).
His family and I all try to encourage him to get a job, and he has been applying for heaps, but I feel like he needs to try a bit harder and he’s quite spoilt as the baby of the family, used to having people help him out with things. He doesn’t have his driver’s licence either, even though his parents have been quite available to help. I try not to nag him ever, because I want him to get motivated himself (even though he hardly ever has money for anything).
However, I’m concerned because, now that we’re planning to get married, I want to know I am with a man who is motivated to earn money to live. We do want to stay with his parents for a bit to save up though, and we’re going to have a super cheap wedding, so it’s not about having lots of money right now – it’s more about knowing that he’s not lazy than anything else. I am set on being with him (he’s my soulmate and best friend), but how can I encourage him to start working and be more independent? Loved
I‘d be worried too, Loved. You’ve never known your boyfriend to have a steady job and a solid stream of income – yikes. You’re still young, but that should ring alarm bells for any bride-to-be. Not having a driver’s license also indicates a lack of ability to set a goal and follow through. I’m guessing you and his family do a hell of a lot of driving him around, right? I’ve been in that position, and boy, does it get tired quickly. No job, no house, no car. He must have one sparkling personality to have snared your affections so completely.
From your description, he sounds like the classic baby of the family. Able to cruise by on charm and sweetness, but lacking certain, er, life skills. Doing a bit of unpaid work for the family isn’t the same as heading out every day to a job (whatever that job may be). It means he hasn’t been able to save for trips, gifts or neccessities, feel a sense of pride in his work, fulfill ambitions in the workplace and meet commitments every day. You are 100 percent right to question his work ethic and to want to know what you’ve getting into long-term. Will he still be riding a pushie around when you have a baby on the way? Will he sit back and let you save, while you live with his folks (and Mum does his washing?)
That said, he’s your soulmate, and that’s rare as hen’s teeth, so it’s not about giving up on him – it’s about investing more in him and helping him live up to his promise. If I was you, I’d slow down that impending el cheapo wedding. There’s no rush, right? Is there any harm in extending your engagement for a year or two and seeing how things go on the work front? You could be totally upfront and say you want him to have found work before you tie the knot. It might provide some much needed incentive. Once he does get a full-time job, set some financial goals as a couple and work out a way (mutually) to set up your own marital home (or travel, or whatever floats your boats). And about that driver’s license – it’s time he sorted that one out, pronto. You’re not a taxi driver and need to cut him off for his own good. Frog march him into the RTA if you have to!
Love, reality chick