Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Married to a Jobless Man

Growing up, it was common for girls to pray for rich men as their husbands; men from abroad, men working in oil companies, men who will 'take care of me'. If you were coming to date and you had a car, your chances were higher.

While there is nothing wrong with that, I wanted more - a man with good prospects, a hardworking man, a serious Christian, and of course a man that loved me. But I wasn't warned about the prospect of being the sole provider in the family for an extended period. During our premarital counselling, our counsellors had told us how for the first 6 months of their marriage, the man did not have a job. I thought I could cope with that. I didn't know it was going to be a case of one year for me.

My husband had a promising career as a Research Associate in a leading investment banking firm in Nigeria before coming to the UK for a postgraduate degree in Finance and Management. He wanted to go into a different aspect of Finance, at the same time longed for some foreign work experience. By the time he was through with his Masters programme and got married, he had 3 options – continuing with his work in Nigeria, accepting an offer for a desired role from a more reputable company in Nigeria, or staying back in the UK to find a job. After careful consideration, he chose to be with his newly wedded wife and continue trying to get a job rather than take up the good offer in Nigeria and be separate from his family.

I had a few challenges. Talk about having to answer the question of what your hubby does for a living. "Why not take up an unskilled job to just have something coming in every month and to have somewhere to go to in the mornings?", people would often ask; the awkwardness of bringing this up with him when I did, not wanting to sound like I thought he was lazy.

Well, he already had somewhere to go. He started volunteering with an organisation that prepares talented students from ethnic minority or low socioeconomic backgrounds for career success. He also joined a Charity, volunteering his skills to help vulnerable people in our community solve problems they faced. To him, taking up just any menial job would mean settling to fate, plus he would have less time to search for his preferred job.

He searched for jobs every day and night. Through multiple rejections, he kept on trusting. Observing him, I discovered job-seeking in itself is a full-time job. He was so occupied with it - searching for roles, studying the companies, learning new skills to be able to fit the role, writing cover letters, meeting current and former employees of the companies (many times in London), writing psychometric tests, doing video interviews and attending physical interviews. He always dressed professionally even when meeting potential colleagues for a chat over coffee. Well…some video interviews were attended wearing a shirt, tie and jacket on pyjamas.

Sometimes I felt guilty that I got my medical jobs on a platter, whereas he had to work so hard and wait so long for his first job in the UK. He was ready - from proper dressing, to time management, organisation, leadership, engaging in professional conversations and formal email correspondence, he's well rounded - he just needed an office.

Throughout this trying period, he maintained a good attitude. I saw patience, endurance, temperance and hardwork in display. I received strong support from him too. He drove me to work when necessary, woke me to study for my exam, sometimes made dinner when I was exhausted. He had no low self-esteem. He would draw up our budgets and manage the finances, accompany me to functions where my colleagues were, and was ever ready to answer the question "what do you do?"

Even in his jobless state, he slept less hours than I did. He was persistent. Though receiving uncountable rejection emails, he was never discouraged. He once received an offer bearing his full names, only to be told the following day that it was meant for a Kingsley, not Kingston. He would follow up the rejection emails with polite replies asking for feedback on his performance and stating that he was available for any other roles they deemed him suitable for. Finally, after the long wait, he commenced work with a FinTech start-up in London last November. All thanks to God.

In all these, I can say I am really blessed. Single girls, if you see a diligent man, marry him not for his money but for his character. If you see a lazy man with a lot of money, please run. For when the money disappears, you will become his crutch.

Radiant ~ December 2019
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this post. Please leave comments below. Happy new year. 


Unknown said...

Amazing testimony i must say.
God showed up for you both. Your husband's faith in his word came through.
Thank God for a supportive wife you are to him.
Its never all about money and that's what everyone should know.

God bless you both.


Dioscuri2 said...

As always lovey piece . This is a defining testimonial of the power of persistence . And perseverance.
Also as stated his diligence is to be admired .
I would also imagine that it goes unsaid that there were tough times when he would have thought of going back
. It would be good to here his own perspective as well which would be an encouragement for many men/boys out there .
#nevergiveup 👏🏽

Dr Tosin

vickradz said...

This is an amazing piece and I think it’s worth sharing over and over. Your husband has always been a deligent gentle man, very loyal and committed to service and humanity, I love that he never gave up on himself or his pursuits, am also sure he was able to stay focused because he had a very solid support system in you.
God bless you both guys

Unknown said...

*Congratulations bro*

He has always been a leader, showing much sacrifices, setting the pace for emulation

Waoow, Too much lessons from you both, especially to balance marriage and family, Virtues, Ingredients and Essence of marriage.

However I wish to ask, what were your hubby's inner thoughts especially, what were his answers when asked what he does for a living?

*If he regretted his decision on his career in Nigeria?

*How he managed times he needed to ask financial assistance from you

*With your experience, what advice do you have for young couple seeking greener pastures abroad from Nigeria

Unknown said...

Well written / said. This is a wonderful account that shows that life can be tough, and marriage multiplies the intensity of the challenge(s) we face. Well done to both of you for honouring God in your attitude and actions. Hopefully many, not just single people, will scoop the wise word you shared.

Bunmi & Tosin

Kingston (Radiant's husband) said...

@Dr Tosin: My perspective...to be candid it's not an easy position to be in. I remember thinking why should I stay in another country going through this stressful process when I was comfortable in my country.

Yes, I thought about going back home, getting my career back on track and to search for a job from there before coming over. I set a deadline for June and if I didn't get a job in the UK by then, that's it.

However, at the back of my mind I knew it would have been the right thing for me but not for my family. I thought long and hard about this throughout the month of May and once I made up my mind, I called to tell the company I won't be accepting their offer.

The summary of this whole thing is that I prioritised my family over my career. Tough choice though.

Kingston (Radiant's husband) said...

@Unknown: I answered your question on my inner thoughts above.

*What I would add is that my wife made the decision easier for me. What did I stand to lose? I risked being jobless and not earning an income for God knows how long. But we're a team and her income was sufficient for us to live a modest and comfortable lifestyle. She understood the situation and was willing to make compromises on her part too.

When I was asked what I did for a living, I simply answered that I wasn't working at the moment. Then I talked about my background, that I had just finished a Masters degree programme and shared my interests. This wasn't a problem for me.

*A part of me sometimes felt like may be I should have accepted the new offer. I knew I made the right decision but did not expect the process to take so long. To be frank, I always believed I was good enough to break into the system here but I did not make light of the fact that I was in a different market and competing with people from other countries, including the natives and EU citizens for a share of the same pie. I knew I had to learn new ways of doing things. I comforted myself with the progress I was making along the way, changing my approach, and maintaining a positive mindset. Of course I prayed about it too and received encouragement from family and friends.

*Regarding our Finances, we both know I am better at handling money. I had access to her income so there wasn't really a case of asking. We just made sure we were careful with our expenses.

*My advice for young couples:
- Either of you has to have a stable income while the other is finding his way. Settling into a new country is not always smooth.
- Do your research properly and be ready to embrace new challenges when you make the move.
- You and your partner have to be a team. There's enough pressure on the outside; you want your home to be peaceful.

Thank you.

Ebube said...

The glory of the later temple shall be greater than the former in Jesus name Amen!

Drew said...

Your story has alot to teach. Thank you for sharing this.
You are blessed with a good man.And you have a good heart.

Ifeanyi said...

OMG you’re truly a King, bro
Reading from you has actually spoken great values into me. Thanks for sharing your part


Amy.dvine@gmail.com said...

Worth a read. Well done Radiant.

Dizzle said...


This is especially so true for many of us who left home to explore other lands. People seem to think its all rosy outside but its a bit of the same. Irrespective of the country we find ourselves, It takes tenacity, grit and most importantly humility to accept the temporary "L's" for the long term "W".

Equally admirable is that you both understood each other's strengths and shared resources coming from one partner for the benefit of the home. This is what marriage is about, Mutual benefits, Sacrifice and Love.

Radiant, you're a true queen for sharing this and for keeping the words of encouragement flowing even when things looked grim. It's easy for men to slip into depression especially when coming from years of success and growth to somehow now go through a slump. Those words, nudges and affirmative belief in the man you married was the drive to this fantastic story.

@Kingston, You're a shining example of the ideal man. To give it all up for the sake of family and to persist even in the face of so many rejections. I respect your courage. I respect your taking time to keep encouraging others connected to you at the time even when things were not so rosy with you.

God bless you both and cheers to greater testimonies.

Onome Kinggirl said...

Thanks Radiant and Kingsley for sharing. Your story is a great lesson for couples, even older. It's so encouraging to know you two showed such love and maturity even in as a young couple. You have learnt lessons and grown through this process more than you may realize. I'm happy for you. God bless and lift you both.

Radiant said...

True. Amen.

Radiant said...

Thanks Tosin

Radiant said...


Radiant said...

Thanks for your comment. Please find his answers below

Radiant said...

Thank you B&T

Radiant said...

Amen. Thank you

Radiant said...

I’m indeed blessed. Thanks Drew

Radiant said...

Thank you for commenting

Radiant said...

Thanks for your comment

Radiant said...

Thank you for your comment. Amen

Radiant said...

Thanks Kinggirl. Amen. It’s Kingston though. Blame autocorrect