How Do I Deal with My Unemployed, Babies’ Father?

BY: - 5 Sep '17 | Relationships

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Dear  Dr. Buckingham,

I’ve been with my babies’ father for five years now. Throughout the five years that we have been together, he has never been able to keep a job for more than three months. We have two little boys and I stopped working when I got pregnant the first time. I would look for a job, but when I was working in the beginning of the relationship, he didn’t work and I was the only one working. I don’t want it to be like that again.

We have been living with my family or his family throughout the years and I am tired of not having my own home. I’ve tried talking to him about my concerns and about how stressed I am. All he says is for me to get a job and then I can give my input. He starts yelling at me and insulting me. I’ve tried ignoring the fact that he does not like to work and when he is “tired” he just doesn’t go to work.

Bad relationships occur because people make bad decisions. However, all of us should thank God for the ability to reverse and grow from bad decisions.

At first, I would tell him I’m mad, but I stopped because arguments and loud voices would start. I stopped telling him anything about not waking up to go to work. If I keep like this we will not even have money for diapers. I don’t like to think of myself as being a gold digger but that is what I get called when I ask him about his job situation. I love him and I want to be with him, but our kids are not going to survive on love. My kids need someone that is going to be there financially for them. I’m scared to bring it up to him because of how mad he gets. How Do I Deal with My Unemployed Babies’ Father?

Please help,

Broken Love

Ask Dr. Buckingham

Dear Broken Love,

Have you heard the saying, “I can do bad all by myself.” Many women use this saying when they are tired of dealing with a free loading and disrespectful man who does nothing to improve their situations. With this in mind, you have to make a decision about what is important to you and your children. Your boyfriend’s unwillingness to work is not your biggest problem. Your biggest problem is that your boyfriend is emotionally abusing you. You stated, “He starts yelling at me and insulting me.” His unwillingness to work is very problematic, but the fact that he attacks you when you ask him to be a breadwinner is extremely disturbing.

You realize that your love for your boyfriend is not good enough as indicated in your statement, “I love him and I want to be with him, but our kids are not going to survive on love.” I agree with this comment 100 percent and challenge you to explore your decision process that causes you to continue to allow your “unemployed and free-loading boyfriend” to be in your life. There is an internal quality within you that positions you to tolerate this kind of behavior. Once you figure out what this is, you will have more clarity about how to move forward.

For many people, including me, the obvious answer for you is to leave him immediately. I agree that you should probably move on, but I am concerned that you will not stay away or do much better by yourself until you address and resolve your unhealthy psychological and behavioral tendencies that allow him to remain in your life.

Bad relationships occur because people make bad decisions. However, all of us should thank God for the ability to reverse and grow from bad decisions. I say this to help you understand that you should not be enslaved by your bad decision. You might feel trapped or are fearful of moving on because you have 2 children with your boyfriend. But remember that God created you out of love so that you can be loved, not abused.

There are resources available to help you such as The National Domestic Violence Hotline. Please consider what is best for you and your two boys. They not only need a breadwinner, they need a role model. Please do not allow your love for your boyfriend to enslave your children to a lifestyle of hardship. Women in bad relationships should be guided by two thoughts: Move Up (work to get better) or Move On (get someone who can help you get better). The latter can be scary, but with professional help and prayer you can make it happen.

Best regards,

Dr. Buckingham

If you have questions for Dr. Dwayne Buckingham regarding relationships (married, single, etc), parenting, or personal growth and development, please send an email to

Disclaimer: The ideas, opinions and recommendations contained in this post are not intended as a substitute for seeking professional counseling or guidance. Any concerns or questions that you have about relationships or any other source of potential distress should be discussed with a professional, in person. The author is not liable or responsible for any personal or relational distress, loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or recommendations in this post.

About the author

Dwayne Buckingham wrote 219 articles on this blog.

Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham, author of Qualified, yet Single: Why Good Men Remain Single and Unconditional Love: What Every Woman and Man Desires in a Relationship, is a highly acclaimed international clinical psychotherapist, life coach, relationship and resiliency expert, motivational speaker and corporate consultant. He is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of R.E.A.L. Horizons Consulting Service, located in Silver Spring, Maryland. To learn more about Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham visit his website at


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From Wife to Widow: 4 Things I Wish I Didn’t Know But You Should

BY: - 6 Sep '17 | Marriage

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By: Kimberly Holmes Wiggins

Widow. Man, I hate that word. It conjures up images of children who hear the word, then cower away from the woman, slowly reversing their tracks, fearful they may catch some of the sadness she gives off as she navigates this world without her husband.

I remember the first time someone referred to me as one. I can still see myself sitting in that leather chair in the funeral home. It was moments after the director returned Rasheed’s wedding ring to me in a small, plastic, evidence bag.

You see, the love of my life left our home on April 16th, 2016 to pick up some stupid snacks and he never returned home. Three cars ran over him. Troopers in Florida are still searching for the first two drivers. I’m now fighting for a hit and run alert system.

It’s all because of him.

Rasheed Amin Wiggins made me so happy. He still does on the days I can get my mind to focus on the love that lives and not on the gaping hole in my life that remains in his absence.

Decide wisely about which assets will be placed in whose name. It all becomes a nightmare after death.

kwWe met as children. I was a 17-year-old freshman at Duke University. He was a senior. Fast forward to two years after my graduation when my sorority sister married Rasheed’s fraternity brother. I thought the wedding would be a chance to connect with an old crush, but this Southern girl was determined not to make the first move. Seconds after the last dance was announced, the waterworks commenced. My one too many drinks from the open bar ended with a pity party that I tried to bring to my sorority sister. She told Rasheed I wanted to dance with him. Moments later, that adorable man appeared and we danced together for the next 12 years.

Most were spent apart from one another. You know how it goes. Graduate schools, jobs, and life always seem to take you in the direction opposite of the one you want to be with. As a broadcast journalist, I bounced from one job to the next in cities across the country.  We spent seven years apart from each other.

It’s difficult not to look upon those years that God made us spend apart as anything but cruel. We’re talking about nearly a decade that could have been spent married, raising a family, and just being in his arms. However, it taught us to communicate in different ways. The muscle memory of knowing Rasheed was always in my corner, even though he often couldn’t physically be in my corner is coming back to me.

While losing a soulmate is never easy, certain things we did in our marriage have helped me immensely through this difficult time. Here are my top FOUR!

Communicate the Private Stuff

You got those digits? You know, the code and the passwords. I know. I know. We all like to keep some stuff private. That’s fine; but I do think your spouse should have some way of getting to the pertinent information. Think of it as an “in case of emergency” button. If the unthinkable happens, will your spouse know how to get into your phone, your emails, and other accounts?

Assets and Money Should Be Clear Cut

Oh, goodness. I’m not here to tell you how to balance your budget. I’m also not saying there’s one right way for a couple to handle their finances. However, those codes and passwords we shared meant open lines of communication during our marriage and a real lifeline for me after Rasheed’s death.

Decide wisely about which assets will be placed in whose name. It all becomes a nightmare after death. It’s also wise to find a trusted financial adviser soon after your spouse passes. You may not think you have enough assets to warrant the move, but trust me, even simple planning for your future or figuring out the best way to handle taxes for that first year are reasons to seek out help.

Life Insurance is Not a Dirty Word

kw2Losing a spouse is described as The. Most. Stressful. Event. IN LIFE on the Holmes and Rahe scale. I know when you’re stretching to figure out how to put food on the table, paying for something that may not happen for decades may not seem wise. But consider it. It could mean life after death for someone you love dearly who is trying to survive your loss.

I wasn’t working at the time my husband was killed. I had nearly a year to sit in the suck without the heat of a steady employer breathing down my neck. Most bereavement policies for even the top corporations barely offer a few days. Plus, your mental and physical health take a huge beating. I lost our health insurance just weeks after everything happened. Thankfully, I acquired some on my own soon after Rasheed’s death; doctors said I needed surgery.

After the Unthinkable Happens, Here’s How to Think

Life immediately after loss is horrific, but it’s the weeks, months and years that follow that are the truly difficult ones. As a friend, I urge you to help your friend think. I was blessed to be surrounded by an amazing tribe. My loved ones and friends packed up my house and moved me to my parents’ home up the East Coast within five days.

And please, don’t stop thinking of your widowed friend after the first month. Don’t be afraid to say “I’m not sure what to say, but I love you.” Keep inviting your widowed friend to events even though she’ll probably say no. Eventually, she will feel strong enough to venture out. And the grief doesn’t end after the first year. In fact, all widows and widowers agree the second year is the worst.

My life with Rasheed was unique, but my loss isn’t. I hope my words have offered guidance to some, comfort to others, and an understanding that we should never take anything for granted.

kw3About the Author: Kimberly Holmes Wiggins is a television journalist. She launched a faith-based, retail company with a wister (widow sister) called Still His for those who would like to share their love for the Lord and/or for a spouse (whether here on Earth or up above)! They recently formed a partnership with the renowned group, The Dinner Party, to launch support-based gatherings that are full of good food, laughter and understanding for widows navigating the waters of significant loss and grief.

About the author

BMWK Staff wrote 1259 articles on this blog.

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