Has your husband ever quit his job without talking to you first? Large decisions like quitting a job while married should be discussed together before so that the impacts can be both planned for and kept to a minimum. Not discussing the reasons and impact can create additional problems that are unneeded at an already stressful time and may indicate problems in a relationship.
Quitting his job without telling you, unless there was a very serious time-sensitive emergency, is irresponsible, selfish, and inconsiderate behavior. Initially one feels that nothing can justify such an action because it has an impact on so many levels of your life.
We can hope that you are never faced with the shock of your husband casually announcing that he has quit his job and that from the following day he is unemployed.
The realisation that he quit his job without telling, informing, or discussing this very important decision with you beforehand, can be a bitter pill to swallow.
Quitting his job is after all a decision that could possibly have a hugely negative impact on your life, your relationship, your family, your social status, and even your health.
It may be that is also is indicative of more serious problems within the marriage. In order to identify the cause of these problems, it is important to look at the following three areas.
- Your husband’s work and work environment
- Your marriage or relationship
- Your husband as an individual
Related Reading: Husband Makes Decisions Without Consulting Me
Looking at the Dilemma From Different Perspectives
Although being left out of such important decisions is hurtful and disrespectful, it is important to pause and show a little empathy. If it is completely out of the blue and uncharacteristic then take the time to listen to the reasons for quitting, it may be regarding safety, or legality and your husband may have felt he had no choice.
If it has been building for a while, and you were aware of it, then there may have been a line that was crossed that caused this to happen. It is still disappointing and disrespectful but it is less so than if the decision was made just to quit and you had no warning
Taking a step back (with all large news) allows you to understand the situation better and make better-informed decisions as to how to proceed to try and salvage the situation. We will take a look at the immediate consequences below.
Consequences for a Husband Who Quit His Job
Although the feeling of hurt surrounding not being included in the decision may still be raw, and certainly need to be addressed, there are some more tangible and, depending on your circumstances, pressing issues to consider as well.
If your husband has quit his job on the spot, this will probably be the main part of the problem and even more so if there are children involved. Forfeiting an income (or the only income) can really cause serious economic issues that will have an impact on the entire family.
Aspects like food, shelter, transport, health insurance, and school fees are only a few of the difficulties that will arise unless your husband finds another job or source of income immediately.
Your husband quitting his job without discussing it with you is a clear indication that the way decisions are made in your household is not effective. If this is the way that decisions are normally taken in your family then this process needs serious attention.
It is important to discuss this moving forward and if this has already been tried then it may be time to seek outside help. Consider speaking to a counselor, or another objective person.
Although it won’t address the immediate problem it will help prevent similar situations from arising in the future.
Being unemployed will also have social implications for the family. Not only will the loss of financial security lead to stress and conflict within the family but the stigma attached to being unemployed will also be felt.
The sudden shock of quitting and the worry about finances, future and security will influence the mental and emotional well-being of all family members. Conflict and or depression may result, and relationships will be strained.
Valid Reasons for Quitting a Job Immediately
All behaviour is motivated which means your husband had his reasons for quitting his job and also, he had his reasons for not informing you about that decision. They may be wildly
Let’s look at some valid and some not so valid reasons for him quitting his job on the spot
In general, the following can be considered valid reasons for quitting one’s job:
- experiencing a personal, mental or emotional crisis
- battling with a serious illness and not capable of doing your work
- going through a family crisis
- hating your job to the extent that it drives you crazy
- working in a dangerous environment
- being subjected to some form of harassment
- management is forcing you to do illegal or unethical work
- you are not being paid for the work you do
- you found a new or more permanent job
- you are required to work difficult hours
- you have decided to study further
- you are moving to another city or state
- forced retrenchment or redundancy
- company is closing down
- restructuring of the company
- you have been offered better opportunities, salary or a promotion elsewhere
- you do not have transport to and from work
- contract has expired
As can be seen in the above-mentioned list, these reasons for quitting your job are indeed reasonable and acceptable. However, they are all reasons that have developed over time and that could reasonably be discussed with your partner or spouse.
Because these reasons are fair and valid, there should be no reason to keep them secret or to hide them from your significant other.
Not So Valid Reasons for Quitting Your Job
This scenario might give way to the suspicion that something fishy might be going on. Questions that come up include:
- Was your husband involved in something illegal, unethical or just not acceptable?
- Was he asked to quit before he was fired?
- Could he possibly be guilty of something like:
- sexual harassment
- misconduct such as being drunk or intoxicated at work
- threatening employers or co-workers
- inappropriate use of company resources such as using the internet for adult content
- leaking important information.
The worst-case scenario is that your husband has been planning to quit but he just did not inform you. This then will lead to your next point of consideration, namely the state of your marriage or relationship.
The State of Your Relationship
If you and your husband do not discuss important issues such as quitting a job, with each other it might be an indication that the relationship is in danger. Trust, honesty, openness, loyalty, mutual consideration, respect, cooperation, and commitment are only but a few ingredients that make a relationship solid and healthy.
If the important decision of quitting his job was withheld from you, you need to ask yourself if the above-mentioned qualities indeed still play a part in your marriage.
The Role of Communication in Your Marriage
Without communication, there is no relationship. The only way to build or mend a relationship is through honest and open communication. If the communication channels in your relationship were open and functional, you would have known about your husband’s decision to quit his job.
Luckily this is an aspect of any relationship that can be worked on and improved to build or solidify the relationship again. Nothing beats good, open, and honest communication to solve most interpersonal and personal issues.
The Man You Married
This might be the time to ask yourself who this man that you married really is. Do you really trust him? Do you know his whereabouts every day? Does he tell you what is going on in his life? Do you and he share the same values? Is he still committed to the marriage, to you and the children? Is he mentally and emotionally stable?
All these questions need answers and it is important to consider these things from time to time. This is done to make sure your marriage is still on the right track.
The next important question might be: What now?
Sorting out the practical issues
Practical problems like housing, food, clothes, school fees, transport must be considered. Make a list and work through it as best you can. Do not hesitate to ask for assistance from friends, family, or professionals.
Working on the relationship
If you consider it worth your while, insist that you and your husband work on your relationship. Go for counseling, talk to someone who is objective about your situation, or set goals for your relationship that the two of you can work towards.
Related Reading: My Husband Lacks Ambition To Get A Better Job
Or Move On
If you realise that the relationship has reached its end, admit it, accept it and move on. This will be in the best interest of all parties involved.
Of course, it may be that the reason your husband quit his job without telling you, is the fact that he found a wonderful, much better job which he can immediately start with and that he wanted to keep it for you as a lovely surprise!
Although surprises like that I think we can all do without.
After earning his Master of Social Work from the University of Toronto, Stuart gained experience working with families in community mental health settings and in the child protection sector. Since becoming a father himself, Stuart now works in private practice offering psychotherapy services. FatherResource is an opportunity for Stuart to share what he learns on his journey as a father with a larger audience.