#1 Edited by vegetashonor (657 posts) -

My wife's unemployment just ran out and still can't find a job. She is 7 months pregnant, "high risk", and we have two other kids. I'm working as much overtime as possible and it's not enough. What do we do??? :(

Edit: Sorry guys, I'm just so scared. I just want to always provide for my family. I'm worried about this Christmas. :(

#2 Posted by J12088 (462 posts) -

Get a second job.

#3 Posted by erhard (439 posts) -

Get more kids.

#4 Edited by I_Stay_Puft (3805 posts) -

Damn dude what a tough situation to be in. I know a friend who was in a similar situation money wise and literally just had to ebay up most of the things he cherished. Might be a quick fix to at least have some emergency cash on hand. In all honesty I've never been in that type of situation so my advice might not be all that helpful. Looks though that you are doing all you can dude, hopefully it works out man.

- Another thing to look out for during the holidays is that there are alot of organizations and local community events that provide children with toys who are in families with financial difficulties. Over the past few years I've donated a handful of toys to my local church during the holidays. There are events like this that can help out when times are tough.

#5 Posted by falserelic (5407 posts) -

Sorry to hear about your situation.

The majority of people on this site probably won't be helpful, and since I've never been in that type of situation I can't give advice. The only thing I can say is I wish you the best of luck, and hope things can pull together for you in the end.

#6 Posted by CrystaljDesign (156 posts) -

Maybe try hitting up Craigslist for odd jobs (yard work, etc) or sell stuff locally. I've always had good luck selling items within 2 days of posting there and I've gotten 1 or 2 legitimate jobs that way.

#7 Posted by Wolfgame (878 posts) -

Not sure what we can say here outside of certainly wishing you the best as you work through these difficult times. Save money for necessities, I know you don't want to disappoint your kids on christmas but take this as an opportunity to explain to them that the household is going through difficult times, and santa may not be able to deliver all the toys that they want. That's what my dad did for me and my brother when we were kids. I'm obviously oversimplifying the situation you are in, but I sincerely wish you the best during these difficult times.

#8 Posted by EXTomar (4940 posts) -

It sucks that someone that far along is going to have nil chance of getting a new job.

Ask both of your parents for some help. Be humble and but be honest about your situation. Don't bankrupt them because that doesn't do you any favors either but they should be more than eager to help with grandchildren. If they are retired they maybe quite resourceful in finding ways to get help.

#9 Posted by Opus (148 posts) -

See if you're eligible for food stamps if you haven't already, that's what those programs are for. Also, some states are more generous than others in extending unemployment benefits, she has nothing to lose in sending an appeal, especially if she's seven months pregnant.

You pay your taxes, you'd damn well better get the benefits when you need them most.

#10 Posted by vegetashonor (657 posts) -

@opus: That's how I feel my friend.

#11 Posted by ZeForgotten (10397 posts) -

If everyone on the Giant Bomb forums are your "family" then I would worry about Christmas all the time, think of all the presents you would have to buy. Hell, even Coal for the majority of the people here costs a bit of money!! Insanity, I tell you, sir!

But yeah, there are probably benefits you can look into for her and you all things considering. Especially considering you are a taxpayer.

#12 Posted by laserguy (455 posts) -

Your worried about Christmas? You should worry about food and medical and paying a mortgage.

#13 Posted by 8Bit_Archer (461 posts) -

@opus said:

See if you're eligible for food stamps if you haven't already, that's what those programs are for. Also, some states are more generous than others in extending unemployment benefits, she has nothing to lose in sending an appeal, especially if she's seven months pregnant.

You pay your taxes, you'd damn well better get the benefits when you need them most.

I agree, its what these programs are for, honest people having a rough time. I hope things get better for you man. I've been there and anything helps. Plus See about Medicaid for your wife it will help with the pregnancy/hospital bills.

#14 Edited by takayamasama (440 posts) -

@vegetashonor: It's kinda out there, but provided you qualify and aren't morally against it, maybe look into military service? Might not be the best of the best jobs in the world, but healthcare for all family, food allowance based on number of dependents, and your housing payed for helps a ton on the family side.

Only one kid myself, but the wife and I want our 2nd within a year from now, and having all those things does make life a lot less stressful.

#15 Posted by ch3burashka (5244 posts) -

@erhard said:

Get more kids.

1. More kids.

2. Modest Proposal.

3. Profit.

#16 Posted by jArmAhead (341 posts) -

@vegetashonor:

@vegetashonor: It's kinda out there, but provided you qualify and aren't morally against it, maybe look into military service? Might not be the best of the best jobs in the world, but healthcare for all family, food allowance based on number of dependents, and your housing payed for helps a ton on the family side.

Only one kid myself, but the wife and I want our 2nd within a year from now, and having all those things does make life a lot less stressful.

NO. Do not join the military. You're about to have a kid. Do not do that to your family, yourself, or hell the military. All of the above deserve better than you abandoning your family for months just to get a few mediocre benefits and an equally mediocre salary.

And he probably makes more working overtime than he would with in the military, enough that the benefits wouldn't outweigh the advantages for a while. Military service should never be a shortcut to fixing problems, in equal parts because that is a shitty reason to enlist and because it won't work. Even if you never step foot on a battlefield you could be doing dangerous training even if you're just a mechanic or something you could get hurt, and that won't help anyone.

I am all for people serving for the right reasons, as may be obvious to some by my name, but this is the last time and the last reason you should join any branch. It's simply not worth it. It'll be months before you make any real money, you'll be away from your family, and you still won't really make that much. It's not a magic solution to not having money and should never be looked at it as such.

Find a second job, seek out a raise or promotion at your current place of employment, and ask family for a bit of support. Also, sell your body to the night. Sell off some of the stuff you have around the house that you don't need, and make use of government programs that help folks out in hard times. Push for unemployment to be extended for your wife. With your situation you might be able to get something rolling on that.

@laserguy said:

Your worried about Christmas? You should worry about food and medical and paying a mortgage.

I'm sure the guy is worried about all of that. Are you a parent? Because Christmas is pretty different as a parent. Especially when you don't have money. Just because the guy says he's worried about one thing doesn't mean it's his priority or his only concern. You should try being a little less eager to respond that way to the poor guy. He doesn't need pity but he doesn't need anyone judging him on blatant assumptions either.

#18 Posted by Vamino (216 posts) -

@stinky said:

1. use birth control, a condom next time. not a joke at all. be fucking responsible if you have a family.

take fathering seriously and be sure you can provide a good life for what kids you do have before having others.

can't stand irresponsible parents myself.

2. apparently. its not so bad that you can't afford internet and waste time on video game forums.

may want to lay off this activity, and when you are so bored that you need something to do, think about an education, or otherwise bettering yourself.

Wow. Way to be an incredible arsehole! Well done!

As for OP, I'm afraid I don't have any serious advice for you.. I'm just disappointed that your country has limits on unemployment when the person is actually trying to look for work. WTF is that about?

#19 Posted by ArtelinaRose (1857 posts) -

Ugh, this is not an easy situation to fix...

I guess, take a good look at what you've got that you don't really NEED. Are you paying for television? How much are you ACTUALLY watching it? You can go without it regardless. What about your internet, could that be downgraded? Cheaper phone plan?

Unplug the kids' night lights to save on power, I dunno. If monsters get 'em that'll just save you even more money.

#20 Posted by Godlyawesomeguy (6402 posts) -

@stinky: So I....uh, understand what you're trying to say and there are some reasonable steps people can take to minimize the chances of situations like this occuring, but there are other ways of conveying that same message without sounding like a total cunt. Moreover, part of the advice you are giving him is pretty much useless given his wife's stage of pregnancy so that's unhelpful to say the least.

#21 Posted by troll93 (388 posts) -

Trully America is the greatest nation on the face of the Earth. Joking aside, I can't offer much advice, as I have never been in this situation as a grown up. When I was a little kid, we were dirt poor and I remember Christmases being great even though now I realize that my parents spent $20 on each of us. I suppose the military is a valid option, with a large/growing young family, trying to get a support position would be a fairly decent move, but you have to weigh that risk against the chance of being deployed.

Really all I can do is wish the the absolute best and try and give you the comfort of that your kids will think it's still a pretty great Christmas even if you don't spend a lot of money.

#22 Posted by leebmx (2235 posts) -

@stinky said:

1. use birth control, a condom next time. not a joke at all. be fucking responsible if you have a family.

take fathering seriously and be sure you can provide a good life for what kids you do have before having others.

can't stand irresponsible parents myself.

2. apparently. its not so bad that you can't afford internet and waste time on video game forums.

may want to lay off this activity, and when you are so bored that you need something to do, think about an education, or otherwise bettering yourself.

Go away. You horrible, horrible person. Your username says it all.

#23 Posted by Hunter5024 (5961 posts) -

I echo the people who are saying you should apply for food stamps. There are many times where I would have gone hungry if we didn't have them. They don't make it quick and easy to apply, but based on your current situation I'm pretty sure you qualify. There's also government medical programs that you should be able to get for your wife to save money on hospital visits and stuff. Another thing to consider is that if your wife can't find a job, maybe she could take some online college classes and help support the family with her financial aid? I guess that wouldn't be something she could do until January though. Look around the house see if there's anything you can sell, I guarantee you won't miss some things as much as you think. Even if it's something you know you want to keep, but you don't use very often, try pawning it. If it works like my local pawn shops you'll have 3 months to turn your situation around before you lose your stuff. My brother sold plasma a bunch when he couldn't find a job. As far as christmas goes, I can't really help. I have no idea what kids these days want. All the stuff I used to like is free now. How old are they?

#24 Posted by Random45 (1279 posts) -

@stinky said:

1. use birth control, a condom next time. not a joke at all. be fucking responsible if you have a family.

take fathering seriously and be sure you can provide a good life for what kids you do have before having others.

can't stand irresponsible parents myself.

2. apparently. its not so bad that you can't afford internet and waste time on video game forums.

may want to lay off this activity, and when you are so bored that you need something to do, think about an education, or otherwise bettering yourself.

Wow, I got suspended from the forums for saying something far less offensive and rude than this, so I hope the mods do their job and ban your ass.

It's easy to make assumptions and picture people you don't know as bad parents, but MANY circumstances can change in 7 months.

#25 Posted by TruthTellah (9470 posts) -

@vegetashonor: What state are you in? Your wife should be eligible for extended unemployment benefits while pregnant, as it is a condition preventing her from working. You should also consider foodstamps and possibly Medicaid for your wife. I can't say any specifics since I don't know what state you live in, but for most states, you should have some options for assistance.

#26 Posted by Vitor (2832 posts) -

@stinky said:

1. use birth control, a condom next time. not a joke at all. be fucking responsible if you have a family.

take fathering seriously and be sure you can provide a good life for what kids you do have before having others.

can't stand irresponsible parents myself.

2. apparently. its not so bad that you can't afford internet and waste time on video game forums.

may want to lay off this activity, and when you are so bored that you need something to do, think about an education, or otherwise bettering yourself.

Seriously dude, there's being helpful with 'constructive criticism' and then there's just posting to give yourself an (undeserved) sense of moral superiority. Way to be a judgemental asshole.

#27 Posted by Wolfgame (878 posts) -

@stinky: Just gonna sound off in agreement that your commentary on this subject has no redeemable value for anyone, it is arrogant and undeserved. Just because someone turns to a message board for advice, that is not an indicator that they are spending all their time on a gaming site. It would take too long to run a spear through all of your weak points that you made in your original post, but if we are arguing pure time spent on a gaming site, then you have won many contests over the OP, its just a shame that even with 1500 posts your contribution to delicate discussions such as this is at such a disgraceful level.

#28 Posted by JasonR86 (9724 posts) -

@vegetashonor:

What sort of advice are you looking for? What are your immediate concerns? I guess the first thing I would ask is do you have benefits (health, dental, etc) and if you don't have you applied for State benefits? Have you created a budget and have you really consider what you really need versus what you don't need? It sucks but have you consider things like 'do we need internet or cable?' or 'do we need to spend this much on groceries?'. I guess that is where my brain immediately goes for the situation you brought up. But, from your perspective, what are the immediate concerns that you want advice regarding?

#29 Posted by joshwent (2351 posts) -

@vegetashonor: I forget what the term is for this kind of work, but there are a few sites where one can do quick little jobs for a little amount of money. In addition to my job and freelance work, I do this stuff and it's great for a little extra cash. Amazon Mechanical Turk is what I use, but there are others too. It's like Image moderation, simple data entry, transcription. and that kind of stuff. You make like 5 to 25 cents per thing, but if you're diligent and search forums and stuff for the best "HITs" you can make a decent amount per hour.

So basically, some super light work that your wife could do from home to contribute.

And don't worry about Christmas, buddy. It's about family and love, not possessions. And I know, easy to talk the talk, but I barely have money too and have forgone presents for the past 2 years with my girlfriend and we've still had a beautiful time. There's no situation to really make you value what you have, than when you don't have much.

Good Luck.

#30 Posted by RollingZeppelin (2105 posts) -

@vegetashonor: You need to go through your expenses and cut everything that is not necessary. Then you need to apply to any and all jobs even ones you might feel you are overqualified for. You can always keep looking for better jobs while working your current, crappier one. If you have any debt you need to pay that off as soon as you can. You need to start a budget and see just how much income you have each month and make absolutely sure to spend within your boundaries. Groceries are a huge expense that can be minimised and no more restaurants. Tough times ahead, some hard sacrifices need to be made.

#31 Posted by endaround (2147 posts) -

@vegetashonor: Food stamps are a start, though that funding is right now at the mercy of the House. Another program to look into is the WIC (women, infants, and children) program. Depending on which state you live in these programs are more generous than others. Try contacting the United Way (if you live in a metro area the phone number might be 2-1-1) to get help in applying for possible government benefits as well as to find food banks, toys for tots programs, and other programs that maybe available in your area. You may also qualify for reduced cost heating in the winter (if applicable to where you live) so contact your utility. I'm assuming some of your children are school aged and so you may qualify for reduced price school lunches (and breakfasts if they are available).

Try to act quickly since the Federal funding may dry up with a government shut down or even one that is going by emergency resolution. You'll want to get in you applications before the end of this month.

#32 Posted by slyspider (1363 posts) -

Basically what everyone else said. You can make up shit to entertain your kids on xmas (provided they are young enough) and get the hell on welfare. Ive seen people with really nice houses and such by cheating the system. I dont advocate that but it should fit your needs

Online
#33 Edited by MegaLombax (428 posts) -

@stinky: Aren't you a bit of an a-hole.

@vegetashonor: I wish you all the best in your current situation. Maybe you could do some re-budgeting on your current household expenses? I wouldn't know, I've never been in this kind of situation. But Christmas would be the last thing I would worry about. I imagine there are other items of higher priority.

#34 Edited by Dalai (7069 posts) -

@vegetashonor: You need to go through your expenses and cut everything that is not necessary. Then you need to apply to any and all jobs even ones you might feel you are overqualified for. You can always keep looking for better jobs while working your current, crappier one. If you have any debt you need to pay that off as soon as you can. You need to start a budget and see just how much income you have each month and make absolutely sure to spend within your boundaries. Groceries are a huge expense that can be minimised and no more restaurants. Tough times ahead, some hard sacrifices need to be made.

This is the easiest way to save a few bucks. If you're planning on buying a PS4 or Xbox One this Christmas, maybe wait until things get better. Look at your cell phone or cable bill and see where you can make any cuts. Look for food deals, buy store brand foods and clip coupons if you can. Eat more at home. You can go the food stamp route if you like, but also check out charities in the neighborhood that give away food, clothes, etc.

#35 Posted by Salvationtwist (48 posts) -

start cooking math seems legit

#36 Posted by yakov456 (1923 posts) -

@stinky: maybe I would have made it a bit more gentle but you speak the truth and others are too afraid to say it. The fact that a top priority seems to be Xmas is alarming. Do you have cable? Cancel it. Internet? Cancel it if it's not a necessity for your children. What kind of phone plan do you have? Get a pre paid. Basically you should be in red alert mode. Any form of payment that can be cut or stopped has to be, for your kids.

#37 Posted by Marokai (3141 posts) -

I'm not sure where you live, and if it's feasible or not, but look into local charities, too. Before I moved, my family was having a lot of trouble keeping food for everyone, and we eventually decided to look into local food pantries on a lark, and we managed to find two fairly generous places to go a couple times a month to get a few bags of free food each. The qualifications for getting food from those places tend to be pretty generous.

Online
#38 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

Though your situation sucks I really think this is an odd place to ask for advice/sympathy. I hope it works out for you but there are way more appropriate places to ask about advice keeping food on the table.

Also don't be so mellow dramatic, a kid needs stability. Things work out.

#39 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

That said as many people have said, cut expenses, look for a better paying job while you work, look into training/school. Best of luck.

#40 Posted by Franstone (1155 posts) -

@dalai said:

@rollingzeppelin said:

@vegetashonor: You need to go through your expenses and cut everything that is not necessary. Then you need to apply to any and all jobs even ones you might feel you are overqualified for. You can always keep looking for better jobs while working your current, crappier one. If you have any debt you need to pay that off as soon as you can. You need to start a budget and see just how much income you have each month and make absolutely sure to spend within your boundaries. Groceries are a huge expense that can be minimised and no more restaurants. Tough times ahead, some hard sacrifices need to be made.

This is the easiest way to save a few bucks. If you're planning on buying a PS4 or Xbox One this Christmas, maybe wait until things get better. Look at your cell phone or cable bill and see where you can make any cuts. Look for food deals, buy store brand foods and clip coupons if you can. Eat more at home. You can go the food stamp route if you like, but also check out charities in the neighborhood that give away food, clothes, etc.

I'd say this is the best advice I've seen.
I was trying to think of something encouraging or helpful but I've been in quite the situation myself for longer than I care to admit.
I'm still getting the Xbox One though, cuz fuck them.
; )
I don't have a wife or kids, that's a completely different situation.
Wish you and your family the best of luck.
Even the "lowest" of jobs makes you a hero if you're housing and feeding your wife and children.

#41 Posted by JJWeatherman (14569 posts) -

#42 Posted by DriveupLife (919 posts) -

@vegetashonor: Why did you and your wife choose to have a third child?

#43 Edited by Freki (119 posts) -

3 kids and a wife on a single salery seems rather much, especially in a nation like the US with very limited welfare services..

Like others I also wonder why you would have so many children without making sure your economy can support them and that you have back up savings incase things went sour..

But done is done I guess, so now it's all about cutting down on everything - so if possible move into a cheaper home, cut all the unnessesary expenses such as cable TV, car, internet sites, phone subscriptions etc etc and start paying off the debt that will surely come from getting into that situation ASAP even if thet means second or third job until your wife can work.. yeah it sucks, but 3 kids is a choice and it's a choice that means that they are your top priority now over everything else and a responsibility that you have chosen and should do all you can to live up to! You need to give them a good childhood and you need to make sure they get to go to college and can make it on their own ( or you will be stuck with them even longer ;) )

Good luck mate!

#44 Posted by ShockD (2421 posts) -

What about loans?

#45 Posted by Tireyo (6451 posts) -

=-(

Seek out other jobs with better pay. Find out ways to consolidate and lessen your bills like taking out loans. A credit union or bank might be able to help you pay off bills at a much lower interest by giving you a loan of some type. Also, you can try to see if you can work with your creditors to lower the payments of bills or get on a different payment plan with them to make things easier. Also, you can downsize or eliminate some of the amenities like TV without DVR or HD; drop Netflix; switch, downgrade or drop cell phone service; and any other things you can think of that you don't necessarily got to have.

Good luck.

#46 Posted by TheHBK (5563 posts) -

@random45 said:

@stinky said:

1. use birth control, a condom next time. not a joke at all. be fucking responsible if you have a family.

take fathering seriously and be sure you can provide a good life for what kids you do have before having others.

can't stand irresponsible parents myself.

2. apparently. its not so bad that you can't afford internet and waste time on video game forums.

may want to lay off this activity, and when you are so bored that you need something to do, think about an education, or otherwise bettering yourself.

Wow, I got suspended from the forums for saying something far less offensive and rude than this, so I hope the mods do their job and ban your ass.

It's easy to make assumptions and picture people you don't know as bad parents, but MANY circumstances can change in 7 months.

Why? He has a real point. Some here might be too inclined to be good guys and just show sympathy but as I read that I felt bad, for the kids, but then the red flags go up. Unemployment benefits are almost 2 years here in the US. And that's shorter than other places, but that means at 7 months pregnant, they have been in this situation for at least a year+ before getting pregnant again. How do you do that to yourself or family, be responsible, don't make things harder. High risk also tells me they are either in poor health, or more likely, his wife, and possibly he are older going into late 30's even 40's. After 2 kids and not being financially secure for a while, a vasectomy would have a been a good idea. And to the point of the internet, I don't pay for the GB premium membership, I barely have enough time to enjoy all the good content on this site that is free, but the OP did pay for a membership, even at 5 bucks a month. If things are that bad, why use money on a video game website? He works a lot apparently and has kids to take care of and yet has time for the premium stuff? It is just hard to comprehend how any of this sits ok with you or if you just get the info the post was giving you before rushing to judge others.