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Husband Refuses To Work (5+ Motivating Ways)

April 1, 2024

Relationships can be very difficult even at the best of times. However, one thing that can put a couple under serious strain is if one individual is the only person who works in the relationship. Here, in this article, we look at what can be done about a husband who refuses to work. We look at ways that you can help motivate him as well as get to the root cause of the problem. Additionally, we examine how you can deal with people like this that leave you to be the main braid winner. 

How To Deal With A Husband Who Won't Work?

Here are a number of suggestions for what to do about a husband who refuses to work and stays at home all day, whilst you are at your full-time job. You don’t need to employ all these tactics to improve your situation. Only one or two of them may be enough to change the set up between the both of you. However, they can work very effectively if worked in conjunction with one another. 

1. Talk it through

One of the best things you can do to deal with a husband who doesn’t work is simply to talk it through with him. This is an important tactic to try if you haven’t already for a couple of reasons. Firstly, he may not realize that you find it so stressful being the person who works full time in the relationship. It may sound so glaringly obvious to you, but some people are not as naturally aware of how others are feeling, and your husband could therefore not know. 

Secondly, talking it through gives you both the opportunity to highlight to each other the issues at play here. You can inform your partner of all the implications on you of his not working, but importantly, he is given the space to admit to you all the reasons why he doesn’t have a job. You may be surprised at what you learn. 

2. Ask him to help with household chores

Ask him to help with household chores

If your husband simply refuses to work and no amount of talking it through will change that, ask him to help around the home more. This could have a couple of ramifications that you find really helpful. 

Firstly, you have less to do when you get home from work yourself. If your house is clean and tidy, you don’t have to be clearing up after the rest of the household or you don’t have to pay a cleaner to do your chores for you. Secondly, if he hates doing the housework that much, he may even be encouraged to get a job himself. 

3. Make sure he has some self-esteem

You may be surprised to find out that one of the reasons your other half doesn’t have a job is that he has little to no self-esteem or self-worth. This is an exceedingly common reason for people to put off finding work for fear of failure and something that many people suffer from. 

If you believe this could be the case with your husband, it may be a good idea to work on the self-esteem of your loved one before you tackle the issue of his getting a job. While this may continue the strain on you and your marriage in the short term, in the long term he is more likely to hold down a role if he has confidence in his abilities. 

4. Consider marriage counseling

Sometimes a person doesn’t work in a marriage or a partnership due to a larger relationship issue. For example, a lack of respect for a person on one side can mean that a husband doesn’t care that he is making his wife unhappy by refusing to go to work. 

If you fear this is the case between your other half and yourself, it may be a good idea to consider marriage counseling. Using a therapist can help as it gives you both space to air your views with a mediator who will help you talk through your problems in a constructive way. Things may crop up that had not occurred to you that have caused you and your other half to slip into bad habits, and your therapist can give you helpful ways to address those issues. 

5. Ask him to consider part-time work

Practically speaking, your other half may not be up to a full-time job. This may become apparent during a conversation with each other where you air your views on the subject. However, you could suggest he applying for part-time work that may be a happy compromise between the two of you. 

If the reason that he is refusing to get a job is low self-esteem or fear of failure, a job that requires fewer hours may be less intimidating to him. Additionally, he may find a full-time position too physically demanding, so a role with only a couple of days a week maybe something that he could cope with. 

6. Put him in charge of childcare

Put him in charge of childcare

While equality of the sexes has come a long way, child care often still falls to the women in a household. If you have kids and a partner that refuses to work, make sure that he is still doing something, if not everything, that he can to help look after any children you have.

Kids are a full-on job in themselves, and taking care of them may inadvertently take some financial burden off you as professional childcare can be so expensive. Plus, again, he may find that looking after kids all day is so taxing and tiring that he then starts looking for jobs that are more to his liking. 


What to do if the husband is not earning?

If your husband isn’t earning, but you are, this can put a lot of pressure on you and make you bear all the financial burden for your household. However, take confidence in this that you are the breadwinner and think about ways that you can get him to help out if he can’t contribute financially.

How do you motivate a lazy husband?

Motivating a lazy husband is difficult, but it can be done. Firstly, you need to ensure that he has high self-esteem as laziness can sometimes be borne out of insecurity. Secondly, don’t enable him. Don't do anything for him like cooking and cleaning. 

How do I motivate my husband to work?

Show your husband, if he doesn't want to work, what he could achieve if he did get a job. Help him on his job search and show him what jobs he could achieve if he applied himself. Seeing the possibility of a better future is often one of the best motivators for a person’s attitude to a career. 

How do I deal with an unmotivated husband?

Dealing with an unmotivated husband is tough - particularly if you feel stressed by bearing all of the financial burdens of your household. If this is the case, tell him your worries as well as trying to encourage him to fend for himself a lot more. 

Should a man give his wife money?

Depending on the circumstances, a man should support his wife, just as much as a wife may have to support her partner at times. A couple has to find what works for them and what makes them both happy while enabling them to live the life they want to. 

The Bottom Line

Dealing with a partner who refuses to work is something that we never consider when we first get married. No one says I do anticipate that this will be a problem within their marriage. However, it does happy and it can cause considerable stress and worry between two people. 

If this is the case with you and your partner, be careful not to enable his behavior by trying out a couple of our suggestions above. If you take a proactive stance on the matter, you will no longer allow the situation to continue as it has done and your partner will hopefully change for the better. 

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