Part­ner needs ca­reer coun­selling

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - COFFEE BREAK - El­lie Tesher Ad­vice

- My fi­ancé and mar­ried this sum­mer.

How­ever, I'm find­ing it hard to be a pa­tient lis­tener when he com­plains to me about his job, daily.

He’ll talk about peo­ple putting things away in the wrong place, re­count con­ver­sa­tions and email ex­changes that were frus­trat­ing for him, and gen­er­ally com­plain about ev­ery­thing at work.

When we moved in to­gether, he was in a dead-end job that he de­spised. I helped him get a new one.

He stayed one year, but it was a toxic en­vi­ron­ment.

We got him a new job with a bet­ter en­vi­ron­ment and close to home.

He's been there one year, has com­plained through­out.

I've sug­gested he look for another job, or re­turn to school, or start a busi­ness. I've said I’d sup­port him in what­ever he chooses (I’ll pay for it, too).

I think he’ll even­tu­ally set­tle on a

I are get­ting new "path" that in­volves ed­u­ca­tion and a new field, but I worry that he’ll still dump his com­plaints on me.

I don't mind be­ing a sound­ing board about a prob­lem, but not about all the daily de­tails.

How can I tell him that I’m not a dump­ing ground for his frus­tra­tions with­out hurt­ing his feel­ings?

Over­dosed Lis­tener

- Since new jobs bring no sat­is­fac­tion, he’s ei­ther a born com­plainer (child­hood at­mos­phere?) or must change his em­ploy­ment “path” com­pletely.

How­ever, it’s counter-pro­duc­tive for you to stay so in­volved in his choices.

Tonight: Be more play­ful. LEO ( July 23-Aug. 22)

Oth­ers sense that you have a lot on your mind. Nev­er­the­less, you ap­pear to be smil­ing and open. You will pro­ceed with cau­tion, as you sense that some­thing is off. Out-of­sorts friends seem to ap­pear from out of nowhere. Be will­ing to close your door. Tonight: Re­treat quickly. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

You might have felt as though you could make an of­fer so en­tic­ing that some­one couldn't say "no." How­ever, this prob­a­bly won't be the case. How you pro­ceed will re­veal your true char­ac­ter. Speak your mind, but avoid us­ing neg­a­tiv­ity. Tonight: Visit with a neigh­bor. LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)

A meet­ing is likely to oc­cupy a good part of your day. You could feel pres­sured by a boss about some­thing that is im­por­tant to you. Be more of an ob­server, and you will know what to do. Hap­pily go along for the ride. Tonight: Meet up with friends at a fa­vorite spot. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)

Pres­sure builds for you to take charge, and you will. You could be over­whelmed by what you see. It is im­por­tant to dis­tance your­self in or­der to see the big pic­ture. You will be re­luc­tant to fol­low any other path but your cho­sen one. Tonight: A force to be dealt with. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

Be care­ful, as you could be

It’s en­abling him to de­pend on you for any job moves, and then feel en­ti­tled to com­plain to you in or­der to get your sup­port for mov­ing again. Take a com­pletely dif­fer­ent tack. In­sist that he needs to find the right move.

Tell him that he needs to go to ca­reer coun­selling on his own (while still work­ing at least part-time).

With their pro­fes­sional guid­ance, he needs to de­ter­mine where his skills lie in a do-able di­rec­tion.

Then he must work to­wards up­grades and pay his own way through stu­dent loans on top of his earn­ings.

If he com­plains along the way, make it clear that he’s got to take some of the less per­fect as­pects of any job, in or­der to get the ben­e­fits.

Then change the topic and/or get busy with some­thing else.

Rec­og­nize that he may also need per­sonal coun­selling to probe why his frus­tra­tion level is so high over small im­per­fec­tions. sup­press­ing a lot of your feel­ings and over­spend­ing. Fol­low your in­tu­ition with a part­ner, but only if you are will­ing to be vul­ner­a­ble. The re­sults might be more pleas­ing than you re­al­ize. Tonight: Con­sider tak­ing off early for the week­end. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)

Reach out to some­one you care about, and make plans to get to­gether. A friend is likely to add to the qual­ity of your day, as long as he or she is will­ing to be flex­i­ble with your sched­ule. Post­pone get­ting to­gether un­til the end of the day. Tonight: Cruise into the week­end. AQUARIUS ( Jan. 20-Feb. 18)

As you look around, you'll see that there is a lot you need to com­plete to­day. Clear out as much as pos­si­ble. A new friend will no­tice how thor­ough you are. Be­fore ab­sorb­ing any more re­spon­si­bil­i­ties, think care­fully. Work more so­cial time into your life. Tonight: All smiles. PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)

You might want to ex­pe­ri­ence an easy day, as the tone of the week­end is likely to be seep­ing in. Oth­ers might take off early, which could re­sult in more work for you. Fun­nel your high energy ap­pro­pri­ately. Lighten up. Tonight: Head home early if you can.


Ac­tor Will Fer­rell (1967), ac­tress Ginger Rogers (1911), ac­tor James Maslow (1990)

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