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How To Help A Spouse Who's Been Laid Off


When I was 8 months pregnant with our second son, my husband suddenly found himself unemployed. He was the sole provider at that point in our marriage and with a baby on the way shortly, he was worried. Somehow though, and uncharacteristically, I was not worried. I knew Heavenly Father would take care of us and knew that our Father saw that we would be welcoming a child into our family who would be taught the principles of the gospel. He would not let us fail.

No one is immune to struggles in life no matter how righteous or obedient they may be so if you find yourself in this predicament, have faith and rejoice in the Lord’s goodness and eagerness to bless His children. Remember “the Father knows what ye have need of before ye ask him.” (3 Ne. 13:8) You can support your spouse with some of the following ideas as you wait on the Lord for deliverance:

Recognize that your Father in Heaven loves you and is aware of your situation. Know that you are not being punished for some long-forgotten sin. Trials have a way of bringing us closer to our Father. He created the earth through His Beloved Son and owns everything therein and the riches of the earth are His to give. He will provide for His people so keep your eyes open to those blessings.

Do not blame your spouse for the situation you are in. Our journey through mortality is full of unexpected twists and turns. This is simply one of them. You are not the first, nor will you be the last to struggle with unemployment.

Help them feel needed and appreciated when they are at home. You can show them that their place in the family is not diminished by expressing love and gratitude for your spouse. Help them spend quality time with each child, knowing that such time together will have a lasting impact.

Pray vocally as a family expressing gratitude for your spouse’s role in your family. There is something special about praising and showing gratitude in prayer that softens hearts. Help them to feel the Spirit often as you call upon the power of heaven for blessings.

Seek counsel together in the temple or in other holy places. This specific trial is not just the breadwinner’s alone, it affects the entire family so seeking answers can also be a family responsibility. If you are permitted temple attendance, what a beautiful way to spend a few hours. If not, find somewhere that you can experience peace and quiet. Prepare with prayer and fasting, including whatever fast offering you can give. These actions of faith will bring you great blessings.

Look for ways to save money for a time. You can cancel some subscriptions that are not essential and put some things on hold for a while which eat up your income. Be cautious about electricity, water, and food usage. Those little things add up over a month.

Be positive. Make your home a happy and positive place where the Spirit can influence those within its walls. Use language that uplifts. Be hopeful and grateful. Imagine what a cheerful and optimistic attitude can do for someone who feels like they are letting the family down.

I can hear some of you now. Easier said than done, right? Well, I suppose that depends on your willingness to put your trust in the Father. I have witnessed many miracles ranging from financial assistance to divine intervention. President Dallin H. Oaks stated, “And so we see that because of His Atonement, the Savior has the power to succor—to help—every mortal pain and affliction. Sometimes His power heals an infirmity, but the scriptures and our experiences teach that sometimes He succors or helps by giving us the strength or patience to endure our infirmities.”1 The blessings may not always be financial but they will come. He hears your prayers and will send needed help as He sees fit. Be at peace, put your faith in God then watch as He does wonders among you!

1 “Strengthened by the Atonement”, Elder Dallin H. Oaks, October 2015 General Conference, Saturday afternoon session

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