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How long should I wait for unemployed boyfriend?


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Old 15th March 2019, 4:19 PM   #1
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How long should I wait for unemployed boyfriend?

My (25f) boyfriend (27m) and I have been dating for a year and a half. I need some help deciding whether itís worth staying with him, or if I should end the relationship sooner rather than later.

The crux of the problem is that he has been unemployed for a year now (although this may be a symptom of a bigger issue). After graduating uni he worked at a starter job in his field of study (finance) for 2 years but quit as he couldnít stand the job (he thought it menial and beneath him, plus the hours were awful). He saved some money prior to resigning which he lived off for a few months. Now that his savings are depleted, his parents are giving him a monthly allowance from his (substantial) trust fund. So, as you can imagine, he has no real reason to find a job. His expenses are covered, he lives comfortably with his parents, mom cooks dinner every night (although when his parents are away, he does cook for himself), he has access to their various holiday homes scattered around the country, and generally suffers none of the usual consequences associated with not going out in the world and earning a living. His days consist of lazing around the house (no cleaning required as they employ someone for that), going to gym, and sending out a job application here and there.

Now, donít get me wrong, I donít think he wants to be perpetually unemployed. Rather, he thought finding new employment would be a breeze, and now heís getting a taste of the real world. After being rejected a few times, he claims to be ďstuck in a rutĒ. He has also told me that he feels like less of a man because he depends on his parents financially. From the outside, it looks as if heís unmotivated, unambitious and content with being a freeloader. Looking a bit deeper, I see someone who is a bit anxious and depressed after being smacked in the face with rejection, feels that many jobs are beneath him, or is afraid to face the real world for some other reason. It could also be that he doesnít really want to work, as he hasnít put more effort into looking for a job after discovering itís not as easy as he thought. I also canít help but feel that his parents enable his dependance on them - they have no issue giving handouts and catering to his every need.

My life is the complete opposite. I grew up poor so Iíve worked hard for everything I have. Iím currently completing my masters while working a dull, tedious job completely unrelated to the career I'm studying towards. We don't often talk about our class difference but I do sometimes resent how easy his life has been compared to mine, although I try keep my envy in check.

So hereís my dilemma - I donít want to wait around forever for him to find work. Sometimes it feels like Iím the only adult in the relationship, that he would rather laze around than take on any real responsibility. I can feel I'm losing respect and sympathy for him slowly - this often results in me making sharp, snide remarks which I always regret as I can tell it hurts him. I want to plan a future with him but I canít until he gets his act together. I try to support him in his job hunt but it feels as though his heart isnít really in it. At this point Iíll be happy even if he gets some ****ty part time gig as it would mean heís at least leaving the house once a day to do something productive. On the other hand, him being unemployed doesnít really impact my life, itís not as if heís dependant on me at all, nor me on him. I should also mention that he is good with money - he doesnít spend recklessly (in fact, he can be a bit cheap at times). Overall he's a level-headed, serious, and thoughtful man. I see so much potential in him. I know he loves me, he treats me well and has told me that he wants to spend the rest of his life with me.

How long should I wait? what am I missing here? Is his lack of motivation perhaps a character flaw that I will have to deal with my whole life, should I choose to stay with him? Is my frustration more of an issue related to class?

TL/DR: Trust fund boyfriend won't/can't find work. Bearing in mind money isn't the issue, should I wait or leave?
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Old 15th March 2019, 5:54 PM   #2
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I should also mention that he is good with money - he doesn’t spend recklessly (in fact, he can be a bit cheap at times). Overall he's a level-headed, serious, and thoughtful man. I see so much potential in him. I know he loves me, he treats me well and has told me that he wants to spend the rest of his life with me.
What exactly is he planning, will you move in with his parents or will you make your own home together that you will be required to finance?

Seriously though, there are some definite pros in your post. There are also some really BIG red flags here. How long would I wait for him to find a job and join the adult, working world? Not long. I have ABSOLUTElY NO INTEREST in supporting an educated man who is perfectly capable of working, but is so entitled that he feels a good days work is beneath him. I’m sorry, nobody starts at the top. And everybody experiences rejection when they are looking for work. We know he has some skills, he worked for two years before he decided it wasn’t for him. Part of finding your way is just putting one foot in front of the other, one job leads to another... he’s never going to gain any confidence or find that dream job if he doesn’t get into the game...

Personally, I would give him an ultimatum that he needs to find a job and take some steps toward moving outin six months, or I am walking... I don’t care if it is his “dream job,” it simply has to be “a job.” I would need to know that he is capable of maintaining a job and supporting himself/a family before I commit to a more serious relationship. He also needs to learn how to cook and do his own laundry...

Trust fund money is wonderful. A man who has no intention to work and contribute anything meaningful to society because he plans to rest on his inflated bank account... that’s not so wonderful. There is nothing to respect about that - and you know that, because you have had a different experience. You have a very different set of values as it relates to work, responsibility, and money.
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Last edited by BaileyB; 15th March 2019 at 6:02 PM..
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Old 15th March 2019, 7:43 PM   #3
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He is not interested in working. Move on.
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Old 15th March 2019, 8:33 PM   #4
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I don't like his attitude. He's used to living off the parents and can't be bothered to have a career. I think only someone else in the same position, raised that way, would be okay with that.
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Old 15th March 2019, 10:05 PM   #5
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I also canít help but feel that his parents enable his dependance on them - they have no issue giving handouts and catering to his every need.
Wow, has he got it made. He's got mom and dad to support him and you to make excuses for him.

BabyLayla, I'm a bit older and have a number of wealthy friends - substantial assets, multiple homes, etc. Many of their kids look just like your BF, wintering at the parent's beach house and waiting for next month's check. Very few grow wings and leave the nest.

And speaking bluntly, if you can hold your nose for a few decades, it can be a very cushy life. Folks pass away, assets are transferred and new cars are bought.

Simply depends on what you want. If that includes making your own way in the world with a similarly motivated partner by your side, probably not the relationship for you...

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Old 15th March 2019, 11:56 PM   #6
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As always I think posters on here are pretty rough when it comes to unemployment and neglect the human story underneath it all. To be able to understand it you have to go through it yourself and understand what it does to your self worth before trying to package people under trite phrases such as "oh he should just get a job the lazy bum!".
Nobody is owed a job- a fact that is over-looked somewhat in society in general when standing in judgement of the unemployed. Good people end up out of work all the time- for a long time!

If you have very fragile self esteem to start with and you find yourself unemployed and your first applications go nowhere then your natural response is shy away from it because more applications means more rejection and make you feel even more inadequate than you do anyway so rather than confront the pain you hide from it. Been there done it and bought the T-shirt. I was literally the same, the day I got laid off I walked out practically swinging a cane and whistling 'New York' because I was going to get an even better role somewhere else and I would show them where they could stick their poxy job...my bullishness lasted a couple of weeks and about 5 failed job applications before I collapsed like the world's most pathetic soufflť. In my case I decided to spend some time living off my pay out, although that was obviously a very limited resource and I had to try and turn things around at some point- I wrote a big old post about the mindset of an unemployed person who is struggling in another thread, it may be of interest although the circumstances are somewhat different here.

So imo from the sound of what you say this guy is not a slacker. He seems very self aware of his circumstances and embarrassed about them...he just doesn't know how to cope with the rejection and the blow to his manhood that occurs when you can't achieve something that others take for granted- having a job. So he is running away from it and his parent's wealth is enabling him to run away from it with no consequence-- although there is a very real consequence and that is that if he thinks it's hard now it's only going to get worse when employers ask him why he hasn't done a day's work in 2 or 3 years. I assume that the money is going to run out at some point even if it's not in the short term?

So thinking about how it was for me, I would say the best approach is to apply a pressure point that has greater negative consequence than the feelings of rejection. For me it was the start of a new year and the realisation that my money was running out and I had to act. So I hammered out a load of applications and promised myself that the rejection would not not say anything about my worth as an employee, rather it would say everything about the hiring skills of the people vetting my CV and sooner rather than later I got an opening and proved myself right by smashing it and leaving that company very sad to lose me when I eventually moved on. It's a total numbers game, basically. So the only pressure point available to you is that you have to make it clear that you aren't happy and give him the option of starting to take the job application process seriously or if there is no improvement in X number of months then you are leaving him. It should go without saying that you still need to otherwise be supportive at this time. I appreciate that it's not great needing to hold a guy's hand to get him to realise his worth but if you see the potential in him then it should be ultimately worthwhile as well as being a good test at this early stage of whether you can stand by each other when times get hard.

Good luck OP.
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Old 16th March 2019, 3:58 AM   #7
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Lots of us have been through unemployment and fully understand the toll it takes. However we were not spoiled, over privileged, entitled brats with parents to support us and cook our meals. The OP didn't say that her boyfriend can't get a job, she said he finds most jobs beneath him. As a matter of fact he OUIT the job he had in his field because he thought that job was beneath him too. He sounds like he expects to land a dream job right now, rather then putting in the time to climb the ladder of success like the rest of us. He wants instant success and anything less is beneath him.

Another big problem is his parents. They obviously baby him and have no expectations of him. He gets his meals cooked, free housekeeping, an allowance and vacations all over the country well he does nothing to contribute. He is always going to be a little dependent boy where his parents are concerned. Even if he does get a job he will just quit the moment it becomes to menial for him and his parents will be right there to help out their poor baby. If you want to be married to a man someday then this is not the guy for you.
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Old 16th March 2019, 8:48 AM   #8
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I too doubt he will ever find a job that he thinks suits him. He has an entitled mentality -- he thinks he ought to be CEO or an executive right out of the box & he does not want to pay his dues. It's unlikely that Peter Pan will ever change & with his parents willing to finance a lifestyle he could never achieve on his own he has little incentive to roll up his sleeves & earn it. So your choices are to accept how this will always be or change your own situation. This is exactly who he is.
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Old 16th March 2019, 11:04 AM   #9
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So imo from the sound of what you say this guy is not a slacker. He seems very self aware of his circumstances and embarrassed about them...he just doesn't know how to cope with the rejection and the blow to his manhood that occurs when you can't achieve something that others take for granted- having a job.
As others have already pointed out, there are plenty of jobs out there. There's just none worthy of him, including the one he had.

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So the only pressure point available to you is that you have to make it clear that you aren't happy and give him the option of starting to take the job application process seriously or if there is no improvement in X number of months then you are leaving him.
Ultimatums don't work in the context of relationships. The OP's decisions should be made based on her own desired outcome, not that which she can force from him...

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Old 16th March 2019, 11:12 AM   #10
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It sounds like your bf is from a wealthy family, with a trust set up for him likely from his grandparents. Perhaps he can obtain a sum from his trust/family to set up his own business?
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Old 16th March 2019, 11:23 AM   #11
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It sounds like your bf is from a wealthy family, with a trust set up for him likely from his grandparents. Perhaps he can obtain a sum from his trust/family to set up his own business?
Also, lots of kids with his background get jobs easily through family connections. Or they just help do some routine work for their family business.
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Old 16th March 2019, 11:23 AM   #12
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It sounds like your bf is from a wealthy family, with a trust set up for him likely from his grandparents. Perhaps he can obtain a sum from his trust/family to set up his own business?
Good point. But, that would require a signifant commitment to hard work and assuming a fair bit of responsibility - two things this guy seems to lack.

As one of my friends used to say in his younger day, ďif that is responsibility, I donít want it!Ē
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Old 16th March 2019, 11:29 AM   #13
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Ultimatums don't work in the context of relationships. The OP's decisions should be made based on her own desired outcome, not that which she can force from him...
Agree completely. I just wonder, given that from what OP has shared it seems like they have an otherwise fairly good relationship, if he doesnít deserve an opportunity to get himself together before she pulls the plug...

Although, itís probably been a topic of conversation for a while. Iíd like to think that he has some insight into how she is feeling and what this means for the future of their relationship.

Or, perhaps he is assuming that she is equally content to live the good life, spending his money. Who knows?
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Old 16th March 2019, 11:36 AM   #14
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Good point. But, that would require a signifant commitment to hard work and assuming a fair bit of responsibility - two things this guy seems to lack.

As one of my friends used to say in his younger day, “if that is responsibility, I don’t want it!”
But maybe he’ll be much more motivated if it’s something he really wants to do. He did get a good (?) degree(s), which required responsibility and hard work too.

Things are relative, really. Many of my friends have parents who helped them out with the down payments for their houses. I also have friends who would let their kids in college ask their help for homework. I used to think they’re pretty spoiled that way too.

Warren Buffet has always preached this idea that it’s important to set aside a sum for your kids so that they can go pursue their dreams, instead of working for money.

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Old 16th March 2019, 11:52 AM   #15
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But maybe he’ll be much more motivated if it’s something he really wants to do. He did get a good (?) degree(s), which required responsibility and hard work too.

Warren Buffet has always preached this idea that it’s important to set aside a sum for your kids so that they can go pursue their dreams, instead of working for money.
Warren Buffet has also said quite clearly that after he passes, his family will inherit a small amount of his wealth and the rest will be given to charitable foundations. He wanted to discourage his children/grandchildren from doing exactly what this young man is doing...

I don’t disagree with you June. He obviously has some skills if he earned a degree and worked for two years. Owning his own business may be the best option for him, if working for others is beneath him... it will take a consderable amount of hard work and commitment. Only time will tell if he has what it takes...
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