Friday, June 5, 2009

Dating the Unemployed

Unemployment: Day in 111 Business Days; Day 151 in Human Days

It's been 7 hours and 151 days...since they took my job away.

Today The New York Times tried to put a hopeful spin on the nation's loss of 345,000 more jobs during the month of May.  I guess in the grand scheme of things, the fact that layoffs are slowing a bit is a good thing.  But it doesn't mean anything right now to the millions of us who need a job today.

While layoffs are slowing down, my dating life careens haphazardly ahead at full speed.  It continues to amaze me that men will date a woman who's jobless and essentially homeless.  And despite this recession, there's still a decent supply of men in NYC who want to buy me dinner and take me for midnight rides across the Brooklyn Bridge in their beemers.  But there's a growing population of another type of man in NYC these days: The Unemployed Man.  

I've recently been out on dates with a couple of different unemployed men.  We got coffee or we went for a walk in the park or we drank PBR's in a dive bar.  I'm fine with doing those sorts of things.  Really.  But even though I had a nice time on all of those dates, I found myself thinking, well this is fine and nice right now, but how many dates like this will there be before he gets a job and plans something...else.  

I know, that's horrible.  I'm jobless and it's not like I'm rolling in it these days.  The unemployed should stick to their own kind anyway.  Right?  So why the double standard?  The Huffington Post featured an article yesterday about how the recession has been much tougher on men in the dating scene than women.  While I feel for those guys, there's no easy solution.  Most women I know are even more reluctant than I am about dating a man who's out of work.

It's important for me to point out that there haven't been fireworks with any of the unemployed men I've dated.  I like to think that if I did have chemistry with someone who's out of work, that I'd give it a shot.  And I'm happy to report that I don't continue to date someone just because he's gainfully employed and takes me to fancy places.  But if I've learned anything from my past relationships, it's that money (or lack thereof) truly complicates things.  And isn't my life already complicated enough?

Time to get back to work on my company's business plan so that one day I can take myself to fancy places.

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