Should He Take ANY Job?

Q: My husband was laid off two years ago. In his defense, I know that he has been earnestly looking for a job. He's on the computer sending resume after resume but getting no response. At this point, he won't take a job that he feels is "beneath" him. I don't feel that way. I wish he would get out there, be a barista, something to get himself back in society. I know he's depressed and his ego is bruised, but we're not alone in this economy. He feels that it would be career suicide to take a menial job like retail or at a coffee shop. How could he put that on a resume when he was in management? We're getting by on my salary, but I don't know how to turn his thinking. — Marti, 58

Dr. Susan: I see how worried and frustrated both of you are. Still, I don't think pushing him to seek out something far beneath his level, for very low pay, is going to help him (or, in the long run, you). It might be more useful for him to learn new ways to make connections that might actually lead to a more suitable job. He's not being very creative sending out resume after resume via computer. I'd suggest reading every job counseling book in the library, and seeing what's available online to help job-seekers think more broadly. To stand out, he needs to be creative, perhaps by volunteering in specific ways, meeting businesspeople at various venues, etc. Just for your info, he may not even be hired to be a barista at his age. The competition for entry-level jobs is keen, and all he needs now is to face that sort of rejection. Help him keep his spirits up, cut your expenses to the bone, and brainstorm with the help of job-hunting sites and manuals.

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