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This week, my husband was laid off for the second time in five years. This one hurts more than the first. At that time, I held a corporate job, so our health insurance and other benefits remained intact. But I became a full-time freelancer after he […]

Walking on the beachThis week, my husband was laid off for the second time in five years. This one hurts more than the first. At that time, I held a corporate job, so our health insurance and other benefits remained intact. But I became a full-time freelancer after he found a stable job with benefits. Now that’s all gone or won’t be around for long.

After I stopped reeling, it was time to start dealing. And deal I did — by taking these actions.

Accept the situation. It does no one good to scream and worry about it. Of course, I still worry about the situation, but I don’t let it paralyze me or prevent me from moving forward. It’s OK to scream when you hear the news, just know when to stop and move on.

Stick to the schedule. Despite the bad news, you need to try to stick to the schedule and make your deadlines.

Respond to emails at the right time. Sometimes you may not be in the best frame of mind to reply to a difficult email. Address problems and more challenging emails when you know you can respond logically and not emotionally.

Take care of your physical self. Exercise eases some of the pent up stress and symptoms that come with it. I also make sure I get my seven to eight hours of sleep, drink plenty of water and follow a balanced diet.

Help with the job search. This gives you a feeling of some control. Plus, you might be able to contact some people that your spouse doesn’t know.

Reach out to friends and colleagues. Letting others know about the situation ensures others understand why you may not act like everything is hunky dory. They might also help by contacting their connections who may have jobs or know people who do. If your friend is laid off, wouldn’t you want to know?

Write about the situation and your feelings. For some people, writing down their thoughts and emotions can ease the frustration and anger.

I know we’re no different from the many families with at least one person out of a job. My sister, my friends and others have all had loved ones out of work for months. All we can do is talk and support each other while pushing forward to find the right job where employee and employer can benefit from the partnership.

How do you handle a life-affecting situation like a layoff?

Photo credit: Tree Faerie

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By Meryl K Evans

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  1. DFN: GREAT article summarizing the feelings and effective solutions about how to deal with a spouse’s being laid off. FYI, my wife and I are now a two income household, we’re both receiving unemployment checks from the State of California. This is an example of how I try to deal with unemployment, by retaining a sense of humor. Someone at our Job Connections meetings said “Remember its a season, not a sentence”.

  2. Dealing with a Spouse’s Layoff « Doug Neeper's Blog Saturday, November 7, 2009

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  3. Doug, thanks for sharing your experience and for the laugh. Sounds like you’re doing all the right things. Hang in there!

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