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Am I being unreasonable to DH? (yes, wrong board, I know!)

(36 Posts)
howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 19:08:32

DH has just been made redundant from his (pretty well-paid city IT) job. He found out that redundancy was on the cards a couple of weeks ago but last week was his last week there. He's got a month's notice which he doesn't have to work and is rather half-heartedly looking for similar work. He worked long hours with a long commute for a boss he didn't like (though he was good at his job and quite liked the role; redundancy was because the the company wasn't doing well, nothing personal) and I think is enjoying being at home.

He says that obviously he needs (and will get) a job, but doesn't want to just walk into any old job with (potentially) a longer commute than he's had and wants to pick a job that is right for him and is one he will enjoy doing and is able to do. He has applied for a few jobs-one, he's been long-listed (what does THAT even mean!?) for and has to submit further details for, another rang back straight away but was more of a coding role that he wanted, so is no good and he turned down another that was another 40 minutes on top of the previous (hour's) journey that he did before. Soooo-nothing to be jumping up and down about but clearly there are jobs in his field out there-he's got a degree, a Masters and 10+ years' experience, so isn't batting out of his league.

I am a bit fed up though-redundancy is always a bit of a crap situation to be in, especially whilst the country's in recession etc. I work p/t and will try to work more hours, but my money is crap compared to what he was on. He's cross with me for being fed up and says that if anyone should be fed up, it's him and he's not, so why am I! I'm not crying or depressed, but I just feel a bit down-concerned about the future, feeling aware of bills and the constant expensive demands of a house and three children. He says that because I'm being like this (I'm not even being really miserable, just a bit dowat I don't want him in the house and he says it feels like I don't think he'll get another job. I don't think that anything I'm feeling is different to anyone whose husband has just been made redundant-or do other women skip around the house or really aren't that bothered at facing redundancy?

He says that ideally he could have 6 weeks off at home and then find a really brilliant job. That sounds great-but also sounds as if he's going to do very little for 6 weeks! Who's to guarantee a great job will just fall into his lap then?

Am I being a petulant bitch about all this and should just paint on a smile to save his pride/ego/sanity or whatever it is that i'm upsetting? Or is he being an unrealistic pita. I'd honestly like to know as at the moment, I'm not really sure what's going on sad If I'm not being unreasonable, I'd like some advice to get him to see where I'm coming from as we really don't seem to understand each other on this one.

2fedup Mon 25-Mar-13 19:12:58

I have to say I feel a bit sorry for your DH, give him a break and let him have a bit of time to get himself together.

Gales Mon 25-Mar-13 19:25:45

You're behaving exactly like I did when DH lost his job and I was wrong too shock

Presumably he got some redundancy money and he has a month when he's technically working anyway. This is what it's for. DH now has a perfect opportunity to take the time to find a job that will be good for him and the family. Once you're in a rubbish job, it's really hard to find the time (and sometimes the motivation) to do anything about it, that's how people come to stay years in jobs the hate/working for a boss they hate.

Also, having been made redundant myself, it is a real shock to the system and a blow to your ego. It takes a bit of time to adjust and get yourself together again. (even if men are prone to hiding it/not talking about it, doesn't mean they don't feel it)

If the money was running out it would be different. If nothing happens after a couple of months it would be different, but let him have six weeks.

FWIW DH found work after 4 months and we are better off financially and have him at home much more than we did smile

madonnawhore Mon 25-Mar-13 19:26:41

I've been made redundant before and I have to say YABU.

Even if intellectually you understand it's for purely economic reasons, it's still a blow to your self esteem. It takes a couple of weeks and a couple of good interviews before you can really pick yourself up and dust yourself off again.

The last thing you need is the person you turn to for support and an ego boost yelling at you that you're not trying hard enough. You already feel not good enough as it is. Not helpful.

He's got a month of 'gardening leave' so no need to start panicking just yet. Let him get his confidence back first.

lovesherdogstoomuch Mon 25-Mar-13 20:02:20

OP i can understand your concerns, i was in a similar situation to you and anxious that DH got a job straight away. i wish i'd backed off now. he naturally got very bored after 4 weeks or so and soon had a new position he wanted. so. if you can. say nothing, sit and wait, then.... off he'll go getting that nice, new job! good lcuk. PS. i think i drove him mad asking him to do DIY and walk the dogs. he couldn't wait to escape. smile

howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 20:06:55

I guess I am being unreasonable then sad

In answer to the comments people have made about only being concerned when the money runs out-he has this month (not at work) which he will receive his month's notice pay for, then nothing-he won't get paid anymore until he has worked a month in a new job so the money sort of is pretty quickly running out though?

It's not like he has a month paid 'holiday' then will get a big lump of cash
sad

I know it must be a shock to him but I am concerned financially
that once this month's pay runs out, we'll be living off thin air until a month after he starts a new job.

howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 20:08:25

He has only been in that job for 2.5 years so the redundancy money is v small.

Gales Mon 25-Mar-13 20:16:49

Make sure he claims income based JSA, even if you aren't able to claim anything else because of your income and even if he doesn't want to. Signing on is a miserable experience and may motivate him to get working sooner!

I work p-t too and the JSA was the difference between just making ends meet and not. Actually those 4 months (with hindsight) were an interesting lesson on what we were spending on things we didn't need/want/like or appreciate and it's actually amazing how much you can save without really missing it (when you've been used to a comfortable lifestyle)

For 4 months we lived on about 1/3 of what we'd been used to and we did make ends meet. Not sure we could have done it for many more months, but we did it.

howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 20:19:55

Hmm, thank you. I hadn't really thought of signing on-if I suggest that, will he get upset that I think he has no chance of getting a job?!

I earn about £12k a year-would that stop us claiming anything?0

Jamdoughnutfiend Mon 25-Mar-13 20:21:50

I feel sorry for your DH. I rarely post on relationship boards, but you sound a bit cold and unsympathetic. Having been made redundant, it is a real blow and he might just want some time to take stock before throwing himself into a job search. Also, I don't blame him for hating his long commute, I do a hour each way and there's no way I would go any further than that.

Cut him some slack and be supportive. He sounds like he had good qualifications and plenty of experience. Help him to get the right job, not just any job.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 25-Mar-13 20:26:51

YANBU

DH has been made redundant twice in the last 5 years, he is also in IT, currently contracting at a FTSE 100 company.

Each time he has been on the case straight away with finding new work, and so the first time we were able to use the redundancy to buy a new car, and the second time it kept us going while we started up our own business.

He now works freelance. The money is very good and if it is a horrid commute then he only has to do it for 3 or 6 months until he has finished that contract and looks for another.

I am always so grateful that he has never been complacent about being out of work.

As a word of caution, if the banks are ditching people then he could be one of many across the industry. They all tend to have long recruitment processes for permanent jobs, up to 3 months.

My DH would be looking already if he was in your DH's shoes right now.

Gales Mon 25-Mar-13 20:27:07

No, sorry I meant contributions based JSA. Everyone gets that provided they've paid their stamp and are actively looking for work. It's paid for up to six months. It doesn't mean you think he won't find work, just that you'll have a bit of an income until he does.

If you earn £12k you'll probably be entitled to some other benefits too, unless you have savings over £16k, but I don't know the ins and outs.

howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 20:46:24

Thanks, Gales-I will mention it.

Seems a mixed bag of responses here, really.

I agree he needs to find a job he doesn't hate, but I wish he wasn't seeming so half-hearted about looking. Maybe that appears cold and heartless, I don't know. If it were me, I'd be spending more time actively looking, putting my CV on IT websites and signing on rather than playing computer games sad

ClippedPhoenix Mon 25-Mar-13 21:51:45

I was made redundant at the end of last year and OP it's bloody horrible. It stays with you a long time even if you weren't particularly happy with the job. Cut him a bit of slack for now.

SundaysGirl Mon 25-Mar-13 22:08:27

You said last week was his last week? And today is Monday. So by the first working day he has not working (and given he only had three weeks notice of redunancy) he has already been longlisted for one job and looked into others that were not suitable?

Sounds to me like he IS doing things to move forward confused

You are saying he is playing computer games..what on the FIRST day he is out of work (from a job with a long commute, long hours and a boss he didn't like?) as WELL as the other job apps? Yea he's a right half-hearted lazy so and so hmm

SundaysGirl Mon 25-Mar-13 22:10:21

Posted too soon (and without proof reading, but think the typos are work-out-able) but really..give the guy a break!

howshouldibehave Mon 25-Mar-13 22:15:43

They paid him to the end of the week but he only actually went in once to handover and spent the rest of the week at home doing his own thing. I didn't mention jobs at all.

SundaysGirl Mon 25-Mar-13 22:23:24

You said -

'He has applied for a few jobs-one, he's been long-listed (what does THAT even mean!?) for and has to submit further details for, another rang back straight away but was more of a coding role that he wanted, so is no good and he turned down another that was another 40 minutes on top of the previous (hour's) journey that he did before. '

which gave the impression he has been applying for jobs confused

In your OP you said it was his last week there which also gave the impression he was in the office. Even so this is still his very first working day of unemployment so I think your negativity is pretty premature.

Snorbs Mon 25-Mar-13 22:32:22

This is the first day he's had when he's not had a job. His self-esteem will have taken a battering yet he's already had a couple of leads and... you're not satisfied and are already on his case.

Give the poor man a break.

WorrySighWorrySigh Mon 25-Mar-13 22:33:09

I was made redundant a couple of years ago. A bit of a different situation as I had been with the company for many many years so financially was able to take a few months off. This did actually do me a lot of good as I had never had long off work, just the bare minimum maternity leave.

Applying for JSA was a really good move for me when I decided to start looking for work. The discipline required to ensure I was making applications and following up did help me to find first contracting roles then recently a permanent role.

I would have felt pretty miffed with DH if he had put a lot of pressure on me to get straight back to work.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Tue 26-Mar-13 08:17:00

Worry that is different though, you had some months of money.

The OP has said that their cash will only last a month or so.

WorrySighWorrySigh Tue 26-Mar-13 08:38:06

I know it is different but as the OP has said, he is looking for a job. Having had periods of long commute I can quite understand why he doesnt want that if he can avoid it.

Applying for JSA will help him focus his job hunting efforts.

What is he supposed to do other than apply for jobs? Start moping around the house bemoaning his situation? So long as he hasnt started frittering money then I'm not sure what he is doing wrong.

eccentrica Tue 26-Mar-13 08:44:27

You sound really unsympathetic and as if you se him as a cash cow.

If he has been in a well paid job for 2.5 years and you are also earning, why do you have no savings?

howshouldibehave Tue 26-Mar-13 11:07:51

If he has been in a well paid job for 2.5 years and you are also earning, why do you have no savings?

Well enough paid to cover a mortgage/household bills and three children-hardly rolling in it. Does everyone have months of savings put aside in case they are made redundant.

Looks like I am being unreasonable-I will try to snap out of it.

meditrina Tue 26-Mar-13 11:21:28

Whether they could/should have saved in he past is utterly irrelevant at the moment.

OP: you are reacting strongly to this redundancy and you must remember that DH will be too, but may manifest it differently. In the immediate aftermath it is totally understandable that he wants a bit of mental recovery time. And he's thinking abut ideal next job - again, totally reasonable to see the opportunity for this.

You want him to temper this with a bit of realism about maintaining an income.

It's possible to do both.

Steps to take:

a) have him sign for contributions based JSA and enquire if you are eligible for anything else.
b) talk to him about timetable for job hunting. If he needs a few duvet days, why shouldn't he have them? But ask when he will start looking in earnest.
c) He's tested the water as he's been long listed for one post already. Ask him about his research into the types of jobs and locations that he prefers - is there much recruitment going on?

DontmindifIdo Tue 26-Mar-13 11:22:07

Yes, YABU. re being long listed, that means from those who apply, the HR or recruitment consultant makes up a list of those who's CVs they think are interesting/right for the role. Often they'll interview (sometimes just by phone) or e-mail for further details.

Then they'll sit down with the person who'll be his boss/his boss' boss and decide who should be short listed. The short list will be brought in for interview with the boss (rather than HR). To give you an indication, a long list might be 30+ names from a couple of hundred, a short list might only be 6 or so people.

So the fact he's getting long listed means he's applying for things that the HR person or recruitment consultant thinks he's good enough to do. He's basically making it through the first round.

another thing to question, in IT there's a lot of contracting work at the moment, if he's thinking of going self employed contracting the money is good, but you often have to be available to work straight away, if he's officially still being paid for his notice period, he's not available for these until that's over.

It might be worth sitting down with him, go through your budgets and work out how long you can survive before you need him to bring in something - suggesting he spends 2-3 weeks trying to get his dream job ,then agreeing to take anything to at least cover the bills after that so you have money coming in (even if it's a long commute/slightly more junior than he wants), but continue to look for the dream job. A month with an extra 40 minute commute until he gets something better will be tiring, but better than the money running out and you getting into debt.

DontmindifIdo Tue 26-Mar-13 11:26:18

Also, has he contacted every recruitment consultant that covers his area of work even if they don't have any roles on now? If they've already got enough CVs in when a suitable role arrives, they often will save time and money advertising and just give those to their client without bothering to advertise. They might not have anything suitable now, they doesn't mean they won't get a call about his dream job next Tuesday. Some will call him in for a general chat, this is basically a first stage interview so if they do get his dream job come in, they can put him straight on the short list (assuming he says he wants to be put forward for it) without needing the time to interview him then.

Be kind, it's hard to be made redundant, particularly if your job is a big part of your identity, being 'rejected' even if you thought you were doing everything right is tough emotionally.

I've been made redundant and it is horrible.
But... I had to get out there and get a job.
Got a temp job after being out of work for a week and they took me on full time!
He needs to get out to see some recruitment agencies and temp agencies!
He must have got some redunancy money as well???
Do cut him some slack though, it's just awful when you hear that news.

DontmindifIdo Tue 26-Mar-13 13:50:05

Hells - not always - the gov minimum used to be one week for each full year, to a minimum of 1 month - so if the OP's DH has been sent home, it could be that the notice period counts as it redundancy payment. (This was the min deal a few years ago, it might be more now)

oscarwilde Tue 26-Mar-13 13:53:18

Clearly it's stressing you out and seeing him at home playing computer games, nice and relaxed about getting a new £30k of redundancy is tax free so assuming he has received more than just his months gardening leave then his 2.5 yrs of redundancy cash might stretch further than you think.

Why not just sit down as someone has suggested with a budget and tell him that you are finding the situation very stressful, and that you would really pleased for him if his dream job/commute comes up but that you don't want to be a nag about it, so can you just sit down and understand what the plan of action is? Especially if there is a long lead time on the recruitment processes for said jobs. Is he going to consider contracting work/any job location if there is no firm offer within two weeks? Do you need to get paperwork together to register a company for him to become self employed etc etc .

If he is taking time off, then also talk about it as an opportunity for you as a family. for him to do school runs etc I'd start working longer hours if they're available myself - any job is better than being at home full time in my world, it might be a motivator grin

oscarwilde Tue 26-Mar-13 13:56:35

DontmindifIdo - if it's being called notice period then technically he is still employed and it is not redundancy pay. He should be entitled to salary for his notice period plus his redundancy payment. If they have expedited the redundancy process and he has signed some sort of agreement then he may be available for work immediately, but in tax terms, the two payments are different and as far as I know they can't be merged.

JustinBsMum Tue 26-Mar-13 14:05:06

Don't think I would sit down with him to discuss anything yet.
He might start getting bored after a week or two and surely there are things he could do round the house/garden rather than sitting about.
Wait a bit and, as previously suggested, up your hours so he can't sit about all day.

YABU but it's entirely understandable! smile Of course he should be looking for jobs, but redundancy can be a great opportunity to take stock of your career and have a rethink - it doesn't have to be all doom and gloom. He should use the next few weeks to do some research and get some independent careers advice, think about what direction he wants to go in and look at opportunities for re-skilling (v. important in this industry!) and re-vamp his CV.

He could also consider going freelance and start networking with old colleagues to put some feelers out to see what's out there. DH works in IT, he was made redundant 10 years ago and has been self-employed ever since. We found agencies were pretty useless and all his work has been obtained through word of mouth recommendations.

Fragglewump Tue 26-Mar-13 15:10:23

Enough people have told you that yabu so I'll leave that message. Hugs for your both as we have been through it and its tough! But you can survive. Here's a tip. You must get him to sign on as its not so much about jsa but more that you need to wait a qualifying period of (I think) 13 weeks but after that you can get your mortgage interest paid - which due to the low current rates could be enough to cover your full mortgage. If you don't ask about it you won't get it though!!

Pollymagoo Tue 09-Apr-13 21:00:28

YouARBU.My DH has been made redundant from city jobs many times once for 14 months.He always treats getting a job as a full time job and works really hard trying to get work. As long as the job is reasonable he was prepared to take it and keep looking. Yes he would love to spend time doing nothing but he can't afford it and I can't keep him and in this economic climate to spend redundancy money is bizarre when none of know what is round the corner.
I suggest he gets a job quickly but keep looking and thinking about what he wants to do from a position of power and security and harmony in the home.

Pollymagoo Tue 09-Apr-13 21:04:36

Should read NOT being unreasonable

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