Ways to help your spouse through A Layoff

Your spouse has recently lost their job.

Prior to the change in employment, you and your spouse were living more comfortable and experiencing less stress.

Now. As a result of unemployment, your relationship is being pushed.

Before I dive into ways you can help your spouse with a layoff, I want to encourage you to remember that the two of you are a team. Your relationship and its success depend entirely on the mutual respect and support that both of you give each other.

“A change in employment is not the end of the world unless you treat it in that fashion”.

Ways to help your spouse with a layoff

Do not be their savior

Often partners feel that they need to be the ones that lift their spouses spirit and save them from the mountain that they have fallen off of. You may think and truly feel that your spouse “needs” you send them dozens of job leads each and every day. Acts such as this one, can further push your spouse into anxiety, depression and feelings of inadequacy due to not being able provide for the family.

Consider reflecting and changing the following:

  • Decrease the job leads that you send your spouse.

  • Work to limit the amount of times you ask your spouse about job leads.

  • Decrease employment and financial stress talk.

Communicate on the changes

Your spouse has lost their job. That is a hard and truthful fact that you need to acknowledge.

Take time with your spouse during a quiet date. Possibly at a park or a place that is distraction free. Communicate with your spouse on the changes. The good and the not-so-good.

  • Discuss how the changes are going to impact your relationship. Dates and finances.

  • Consider how the changes impact to improve your relationship. Focus on how spending more time at home can support each other and the family.

Since I lost my job, I am able to spend more time ______________________.

I really appreciate the things that you have done since being more at home.

  • Be open with each other on how you “truly feel”.

When I lost my job, it made me feel ______________________.

My job loss impacts that relationship by ______________________.

Continue to date and have fun

Yes, you have less money then before.

Yes, your spouse and your economic status has changed.

No. Dates are not expensive.

Find creative ways to continue having fun and engaging in dates with your spouse. Dating allows your relationship to remain alive and connected. If you allow your job change to also impact your relationship it can ultimately destroy your relationship. However, if you decide to invest in each other and in your relationship then you will have control over the anxiety.

Fun date ideas:

  • Visit your college.
  • Window shopping at a local mall.
  • Go for a walk around the neighborhood.
  • Picnic at a park.


cover images by: arnel hasanovic; Ian schneider; vladimir kudinov