How to Deal With an Unemployed Boyfriend

by Elle Blake

Becoming unemployed can have wide-reaching consequences, both on family finances and on the unemployed person's confidence and self-belief. Without these, it can be very difficult to get another job, which makes supporting your partner through his unemployment very important. This can be difficult if the family is struggling financially, however, so it is vital you are both clear on what is expected, and how to balance life.

Do something nice for your partner. As finances are likely to be tighter now, think of things which are cheap, such as cooking his favorite meal or renting his favorite movie. This will help to boost your partner's confidence, and show him that you value you him with or without a job.

Make a new budget. You can do this with your partner, or on your own, but having one is very important. Look at where you can cut costs to ensure you can balance the books until your partner gets back into work. You may have to cancel luxury things such as subscriptions and gym memberships, and cut down the shopping.

Help your partner to create a new resume. Think up some of his skills, and praise your partner on these -- make sure they are true, however, or you'll seem fake and could crush his confidence further. Having an up-to-date, well written resume will improve your partner's chances of getting a job soon, and it can be a good bonding exercise too.

Discuss your expectations, and ensure they are realistic. For example, if you are taking on longer hours at work to make ends meet and expect your partner to clean or cook while you are gone, talk about this with him. Remember that while he is doing domestic chores, he cannot be job hunting, however, and ensure you both agree on what will happen, or you could cause resentment.


  • If you work from home, make sure your partner knows that you need to work, and cannot be interrupted.


  • Don't find jobs for your partner to apply for, or moan about being able to afford things you were planning such as vacations or days out. This is likely to hurt your partner, and put him under more pressure. If you need to rant, find a good friend to talk too.


  • "Surviving Unemployment: Staying Centered While Your World Turns Upside Down"; Valerie Pederson; 2005
  • "Coping with Unemployment"; Mary Colson; 2011

About the Author

Elle Blake has been writing since 2006. Her articles regularly appear in "All Women Stalk," "Parenting," "Education Plus" and "Glamour." She has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) in early childhood studies and primary education and a Bachelor of Science (Hons.) in animal welfare and behavior, both from the University of Warwick. She is currently studying towards NCTJ Certificate in Magazine and Journalism.

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