YOUR RE­LA­TION­SHIP

When he lied about be­ing em­ployed

Move! - - CONTENTS - By Mo and Phindi Groot­boom

IAM a sin­gle mother of one and the sole bread­win­ner at home. When I met my man he said that he was em­ployed. Al­though I had never been to his place, I was happy when he in­sisted that we move in to­gether. I agreed that in­stead of look­ing for a new place, he moves into my place for the sake of my child.

Mov­ing to an­other area didn’t make sense be­cause it would in­con­ve­nience my daugh­ter be­cause she at­tends school in my area.

A month into our re­la­tion­ship when it was time to pay the bills, this man kept quiet and in­stead asked me for a loan. It’s been three months and the sit­u­a­tion is not get­ting any bet­ter. How do I get rid of this un­em­ployed and home­less man. He is won­der­ful with my child but I can­not have two chil­dren, in­clud­ing him. How do I cope with such?

FED-UP LOVER

AT al­most 28 per­cent, our na­tional un­em­ploy­ment rate is at its high­est since 2003. Mzansi’s un­em­ploy­ment rate has been ris­ing steadily for the past nine years while the cost of liv­ing has grad­u­ally been climb­ing at al­most twice as much. To be liv­ing with some­one within that statis­tic can have a dev­as­tat­ing ef­fect in the re­la­tion­ship.

LACK OF OPEN­NESS

The mat­ter is wors­ened when there has been a level of dis­hon­esty or lack of open­ness in the first place, as it seems to be the case in this sit­u­a­tion. But per­haps, be­fore we jump to con­clu­sions, you may need to have an un­com­fort­able con­ver­sa­tion with him around what hap­pened to the job he ini­tially claimed to be hav­ing. If he lost it, you’d need to sat­isfy your­self that’s in­deed the case for you to have proper clo­sure.

Fur­ther­more, that con­ver­sa­tion will have to end with a plan of ac­tion around what his next step will be. De­spite the de­press­ingly low em­ploy­ment rate in our coun­try, there are ini­tia­tives he can take within le­gal means to­wards cre­at­ing some sort of in­come.

You may need to en­gage in a brain­storm­ing ses­sion as a cou­ple in this re­gard, tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion his skills, net­work base, ed­u­ca­tion and ex­pe­ri­ence.

CRIT­I­CAL IN­FOR­MA­TION

What we wouldn’t en­cour­age how­ever, is you con­tin­u­ously giv­ing him money es­pe­cially when you don’t know what’s it for. All cards have to be on the ta­ble. He has no choice on the mat­ter.

You also have a choice about whether or not you want to stick around in this re­la­tion­ship, es­pe­cially since he with­held crit­i­cal in­for­ma­tion from you about his work sit­u­a­tion. That he is will­ing to still move in with you, with no shame that he has no in­come, and con­tinue to ask you for money does in­deed tell a story about him as a man.

The two of you are not mar­ried. In fact, it ap­pears you’ve only just met. Also con­sider what you think

he would do if ta­bles were turned un­der sim­i­lar cir­cum­stances? Fur­ther­more, do you love each other in spite of it all? If all that’s short in your re­la­tion­ship is an in­come, then he may be a keeper. His ca­pac­ity to earn in­come can change any day, if he puts his heart and mind to it. Pon­der­ing on these may very well give you a clearer di­rec­tion.

UN­EM­PLOY­MENT MON­STER

Hav­ing said that, and given the stress you seem to be un­der, we be­lieve you need to take care of your­self.

You de­serve it. You are do­ing an amaz­ing job of solely car­ry­ing the house­hold re­spon­si­bil­i­ties and stand­ing by your un­em­ployed man’s side de­spite the men­tal, phys­i­cal, and spir­i­tual tur­moil that un­em­ploy­ment puts every­one through.

How can you pos­si­bly give your­self a break at a time like this? Well, if you don’t, you’re go­ing to cap­size. Un­em­ploy­ment is not what com­pletely de­fines you or your part­ner. In other words, each of you is a com­plex, mul­ti­fac­eted hu­man be­ing who re­mains healthy as long as your men­tal, phys­i­cal and spir­i­tual states are re­ceiv­ing at­ten­tion.

At this mo­ment, un­em­ploy­ment is tak­ing a toll on these as­pects of your life. How­ever, we be­lieve the trick to less­en­ing the ef­fect of un­em­ploy­ment’s se­vere con­trol is self-care.

Self-care means hon­our­ing all facets of your life, thereby diminishing the at­ten­tion given to the un­em­ploy­ment mon­ster. This you do by at­tend­ing in­di­vid­ual or cou­ples ther­apy; and in your monthly bud­get, be de­lib­er­ate in set­ting-aside some money for recre­ational pur­poses.

SPIR­I­TUAL AC­TIV­ITY

You may also con­sider go­ing to church or es­tab­lish­ing some spir­i­tual ac­tiv­ity, cou­pled with reg­u­lar med­i­ta­tions. Keep­ing a jour­nal of your life also keeps you in touch with your­self. Also con­sider join­ing a gym or go on reg­u­lar ex­er­cises as a cou­ple. Take care of your phys­i­cal body, it re­freshes the mind. Find what works for you and keep do­ing it.

If in your books, your boyfriend passed the un­com­fort­able con­ver­sa­tion test about his job sit­u­a­tion, then he may well be worth fight­ing for. Oth­er­wise, if he’s a lazy couch potato that en­joys his par­a­sitic be­hav­iour, then he has to go.

WHEN IT WAS TIME TO PAY THE BILLS, THIS MAN KEPT QUIET

A COU­PLE’S VIEW Power cou­ple and co-au­thors, Mo and Phindi, ad­vise a woman who has a man who is un­em­ployed and home­less

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