12 February 2009

Lay-offs and dissipating survival guilt: A special case

A friend's 22-year-old son (in a different state from mine, not Texas) last month had a little survivor guilt when he saw a friend and co-worker laid off from their shared employment at a chain restaurant. Several workers were laid off and the "survivors" all lost their overtime hours. Belt-tightening was also felt in reduced tips from customers. The manager tried to ameliorate matters with increased food allowances from the kitchen.

This month, my friend's son's survivor guilt has evaporated. He's working for less (overall compensation) and his ex-co-worker is not-working for more. Translation: the laid off restaurant worker is bringing in more cash from unemployment benefits than the workers still in their jobs.

My friend tried to help her son with an interpretation: his laid-off friend must be concerned about locating work, arranging for health care, and the temporariness of the support checks.

This presupposes that young adults seek stable work. That's just not necessarily the case. Perhaps my boomer friend is projecting her own concerns. If she reads this, I'll no doubt pay for that opinion.

© 2009 Mary Bold, PhD, CFLE. The content of this blog or related web sites created by Mary Bold (www.marybold.com, www.boldproductions.com, College Intern Blog) is not under any circumstances to be regarded as professional, legal, financial, or medical advice. Or education advice. Or marital advice. Or even a tip.

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