Help! My Husband Got Laid off This week...where Do I Start?

Updated on January 10, 2009
M.W. asks from Independence, MO
4 answers

Help! This week we found out that my husband will be laid off from JCPenney's. He is upper level management with multi-unit experience and the main provider for our family. We need tons of prayers and any encouragement would be great, because I am so scared right now. Also any job leads...I know retail is horrible right now, but my husband is amazing and could sell a frigerator to an eskimo in the middle of the winter! He also has tons of experience in recruitment and training.

Besides that, I would love to hear from anyone who has been through this. Where do I start? Should I call our mortgage company, car loans, and everyone else to let them know? Please, any advise would be greatly do I get through this?

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answers from Dallas on

Hi M.,

Im so sorry your husband got affected. Fortunately, Dallas has the best job market in the US right now (Im a career consultant with a career transition company; our clients are landing all the time in good jobs, an average of 3-6 months). Of course, job leads are not as readily available as they used to be, and there is more competition. Its important he has a focused strategy, strong marketing materials, and can network effectively.

If your husband got outplacement or career transition services as part of his severance, strongly encourage him to take advantage of them. They can help not only with his resume and interviewing skills, but develop a strategy to research the market and target where the needs are. If not, here is a link of some networking and free CT programs in the metroplex:

I wish you both the best of luck. My last piece of advice: dont watch the news! They focus on the negatives. There are a lot of good things going on and companies hiring. I read an article not long ago where an executive recruiter in Texas said "I dont know of any one company hiring 150 people, but I do know 150 companies hiring 1-2."

Please email me if I can help in any way.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I know the fear you are feeling, and as a wife you will need to be strong for him. He will go thru the standard emotions of frustration, anger, possibly depression until he gets to acceptance. My husband was laid off after 911 a few months after I had resigned from my job to stay home with our new baby. We weren't real prepared (only had 401K savings which we cashed in but you can take a loan against). Since I don't know where you are financially I'm going to tell you the frugal tips I have learned that might help you feel like you are doing something to help out. Call the companies only if you are beginning to miss payments. On mortgages and car loans the key is to get the payment made before it hits the 30 days past your due date. That is when it will affect your credit. Same goes for credit cards. If you have enough severence/unemployment to juggle the bills do your best. If you have to let credit cards go it's not the end of the world. I know that Directv will suspend service for hard times even when you are under contract. They postpone service for 6 mo then you resume contract time. Other cable providers may do the same but I'm not sure. Save on as much electricity as you can by keeping your lights off. Minimize places you drive to cut down on gas, don't eat out. Do you realize that for the same price of a 20 oz coke at the register you can buy a 2 liter? I have recently registered for and started saving alot of money with coupons. I have saved anywhere from 40-100 per shopping trip when they were double/tripled. COBRA- the ick word. Find out how long you have to file for it. The cost is really high my husbands last job change showed it around 800/mo. Unless you have a monthly medical expense that would justify this you can hold off on filing. If you do have a situation occur you can then file for Cobra and pay for the full time you were eligible to get the coverage-just watch your filing cut off date. Otherwise save the money. The Dallas job market is strong and I'm sure your husband will find another job soon. My husband did have trouble finding a job after his layoff several years ago and made the decision to go back to school. We got student loans and I worked, and he now has a career in the medical field that I know is secure. His layoff was one of the hardest things we ever went through but also one of the best things that has happened to us. Pray, hold onto God, know that he is your provider and not the job. The job is just the funnel that God chooses to provide for you through. Pray for your husband daily, he needs that, pray for your children so that they will understand when they can't get/do everything they want. You're stronger than you think you are, you can do this!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

My God give you the peace that passes all understanding! You are in my prayers. God doesn't close a door without opening another, let your faith be your strength, it's easy for me to say, but don't worry, you don't gain anything by worrying. I have been in many hard situations and God has always brought me through them. I use to worry a lot when money got tight, and it still is, however, my husband always told me not to worry that things would work themselves out, and sure enough, they have. Just start thanking God for all he has done right now and is doing. thank him for your husbands new job.
Again, you are in my prayers!
God Bless you and your family!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I am sorry to hear that you are going through this. I know it is tough for a lot of people out there right now. We have not personally be through this but we have a plan in case something were to happen.

Penney's is a good company with a decent reputation.. Are you saying he got no severance? He should get some sort of severance plan which includes your insurance. Get COBRA to cover your insurance needs. Another step is to file for unemploymenet NOW and start getting some money in to the family.

I assume with him in higher management and great sales ability that ...he is a planner and you have some preparation (Savings) for potential times like this. I would not contact my mortgage, or other loan places right away unless you are in a situation already and cannot pay your bills.

Start cutting any expense you can live without now for preparation because you don't know how long this lay off will last (hopefully not long).

Keep your chin up and try not to worry. He needs you to be his cheerleader now and show how much you believe in him.

I do not know of any contacts personally. Help him and be there for him so that he can take the next step which just might be the best thing you ever went through!

Best wishes to your family.

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