A Factory Working, College Grad Getting Out of Debt

Reality Check – Unemployment Misconceptions

Since I’ve been unemployed, it’s been interesting seeing how people view this particular aspect of life.  There have been many sides that I can see and identify, and I’d like to share some of those with you.

Pity is perhaps one of the major emotions that seems to come across a person’s face when you tell them that you’re unemployed.  I truly can’t stand it.  I’m not someone who enjoys being the subject of such an emotion and find it very condescending.  Honestly, pity really isn’t going to help me or anyone else who is unemployed.. unless you have a decent job hiding in your hand, I’d rather not face it.  I have no problem for some empathizing, saying “Man, I’ve been there… chin up, it’s going to work itself out sooner or later, just keep looking and holding out for the best job for you.”  No, I certainly don’t have a problem with empathy, but pity?  Ha.  I can completely understand why those who are unemployed keep that card close to the chest.

The next emotion is contempt.  Pure and ugly in its full form, contempt is probably the one I have most experienced since I became unemployed and did NOT jump straight to a fast food restaurant for a job.  No, it’ s probably also because I actually had a legitimate reason to quit and won unemployment as well.  Yes, that most certainly has to be it.  The possibility of someone like me being on unemployment is atrocious to some people, and they are happy to say so.  My younger brother seems to have caught a bit of this as he seems to think that all I do is sleep, play video games, and watch television.  Now I admit I do this, but I did it when I was working too.  Instead, I spend a great deal of time on the internet searching for a job, I sell things on Amazon and Ebay and am constantly packing and shipping items at least twice a week because things are graciously picking up at a time when I truly needed it, and I clean.  Yes, I am trying to make things better in the house and make it easier on those who live with me.  If my mother has an almost empty pot of coffee, I make it.  If tea needs to be brewed, I do it.  If the bathroom needs cleaned, or if I get a phone call from my mother asking me to run and errand for her.. I’ll gladly do so.

Now sometimes I’m not the best at cleaning.  I’ve admittedly laxed this last week and a half because I’ve been fighting off something (or somethings) that have been brought home from the working folk in my home.  I seem to be sleeping a lot more and find myself burning up, breaking a fever, or freezing the next.  It hasn’t been fun these last few days, and I can’t wait to strengthen the immune system again by going to work.

Sadly, that’s the reaction I always have when someone confronts me with contempt about being unemployed.  I feel I always have to justify myself, and I hate it.

The last emotion that I face is apathy. I find it overwhelmingly comforting and frustrating at the same time.  Comforting in the fact that I am not facing either contempt or pity, but frustrating that the person is so apathetic about the situation that they do not care about the overall picture.  I am not the only one unemployed.  The unemployment rate is facing epic proportions.  Since there are so many out there that have run out of unemployment, they are no longer being counted in the statistics.  I am fairly certain that the unemployment is much higher than people would want us to believe, and that frustrates me.  How can we fix it?  Why can’t we fix it?  If we are truly one of the best countries in the world, why can we not take care of our own?  Why can we not take care of our orphans, our hungry, poor, our homeless?  Why can we not focus on the home front before we focus somewhere else?  The living standards may be different, but that does not mean that our own are any less destitute.  It does not mean that they are going hungry or facing the horrid conditions of being homeless.

How can we fix it?  And why are so many of you out there apathetic?  Why are so many out there not even blinking an eye?

Just.. why?


Count those Raindrops!



3 responses

  1. I’ve noticed these attitudes too. It’s a tough job market. I found my situation easier to deal with by blogging. Today I was told that after forgetting an appointment 3 weeks ago my claim has been stopped, leaving me penniless – I wondered why my money was running out! I would have remembered the appointment if I hadn’t been sent a letter telling me it was in February! I do 3 hours a week of work and provided them with the payslips, only for them to harass my disabled employer asking for more proof. Disgusting.

    I find that the negative attitudes are also prevalent among those whose job it is to help – I heard an advisor joking about someone’s lack of English ability. He had come in to ask for help getting a bus pass to take his children to school, and when he left the advisor imitated his English to a colleague, and they laughed about it for some time.

    My advisor was really helpful but neglected to contact me about my missed appointment. The Group Information Session was patronising, and was all about the sanctions – if you do this, this will happen, over and over, and the points were obvious.

    Good luck getting a job, I look forward to reading about your search as I blog about my own. Also good on you doing stuff to help around the house, I’m sure it’s appreciated.


    February 25, 2013 at 7:14 am

    • Thanks so much for the encouragement! Yeah I almost missed an appointment myself because of a mishap with the scheduling last week. Thankfully I hunted down the reminder card and made a quick phone call to office. That was a bit of a heart attack and a half, let me tell you. Sorry to hear that yours is going away, is there anyway to appeal it?

      It would be nice to be able to find a job that’s more than minimum wage at this point as I’m already dreading the student loans that I’m going to be paying here soon. I’m really hoping my request for deferral will go through honestly.

      February 25, 2013 at 9:51 pm

      • Yes my student loan has been going up by 100 quid or so a year and with the minimum wage jobs I can’t pay it off. I’m going to the job centre shortly to try and sort it out. I’ve had to start a new claim.

        February 26, 2013 at 9:39 am

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