I'm fairly new to the forum(just joined a bit ago), so, if this is not quite the right place for this, please let me know.
I'm a 19 year old soon-to-be first time mom. I had been working at a local organization for individuals with developmental disabilities. It was going wonderfully and I was really loving the job as it had good pay, good hours, and made me feel like I was genuinely enriching someone's life. I NEVER missed a day of work or came in late and everything was great until a situation came up. I was working with a client who required briefs and, when I was changing their brief, the client accidentally kneed my stomach. I ended up needing to go the hospital(still worked the remaining hour of my shift, mind you) due to contractions and was admitted and kept for 24 hours, having to have contractions stopped twice. After my 24 hours, I was cleared to go ahead and go back to work. I had no limitations or anything like that. This was early in the week. I ended up not going to two classes because they were both 2-part classes and, due to being in he hospital, I had missed the first day of them and had to reschedule, which, at the time, I was told wasn't a problem, at all. I was still well within my 90 days of getting all of my classes done and would have had no issues with the schedule to get my classes done within my 90 days. The following week, they decided to switch my department from working in-home with clients with severe disabilities to a much more part-time(same pay) job where I would just be responsible for driving clients to doctors appointments and such. All was good to go for that, and I had all of my paperwork done and read through all of the profiles of the clients I would be working with. I was all set up to go and was told I would be called with my training day to show me my new responsibilities on Monday. Come Monday, I didn't get a call by 1, so I decided to call them, instead. My manager told me to come in because there was more paperwork to do. So, I drove out of my way, all the way to the office, to be sat down and told that I was fired. At first, they said that it was because of the fact that my missing two class days showed unreliability. When I reminded her that it was because I was in the hospital, she said, "Well, we understand that things come up... But you're also not good with needles, and we deal with clients who have diabetes and things like that who need to be stuck daily." When I rebutted with the fact that I only don't like needles when they're for me, she cut me off and said, "Well, we just don't feel that you're a good fit for the company right now. Maybe try and apply, again, later on." I feel like they only fired me because I was pregnant and saw me as a liability, and were looking for any reason to fire me. I have no clue if I can sue for this or whatnot, but, because they fired me just before my 90 days, I can't get unemployment, either. So, I'm 19 with little experience and pregnant(and, thus, most people won't want to hire me), without any ability to get an income until /at least/ after my 6 weeks after childbirth. I don't know what else to do, as one income certainly won't cut it for us.
My fiance works through a temp agency and has been trying desperately to get a solid job through the temp agency, as well as through putting in applications himself and calling companies to check in on said applications. He was doing wonderfully at a job at a local meat factory and they were looking to hire him on, permanently. Well, unfortunately, one day while he was working, the conveyor belt caught his glove and pulled him in. He pressed the emergency stop button, so his hand didn't get horribly mangled, but it was still pretty bad. His hand was swollen up like a blue and purple, blue, red, black, etc. The temp agency automatically ended his assignment with the company and had him go through workmen's comp. Now, they've been giving him the major run around with getting his checks. He got his hand caught in the belt on September 21st. He was /supposed/ to get his workmen's comp checks starting on the 7th of October. When they didn't show up by the 20th of October, yet all of the correspondence checks were showing up, he called her back(note: she was also EXTREMELY hard to get a hold of, and never called back when he left a message). She said that the post office sent back the checks because he didn't live there anymore, which is obviously a lie, as the checks and the correspondence come in the /exact/ same packaging. Why would they send back only the checks, especially without being able to tell the difference, yet send us all the correspondence? He has permanent nerve damage in his hand, and, because of the issues with workmen's comp, he has missed well over a month of work. He only JUST got the checks on Monday. We're talking to an attorney tomorrow, but what do you think will most likely come of this? Do you think this is a solid case here? I understand it's not legal advice, but I'm just wanting to go in with some kind of idea of what will happen tomorrow.
The factory is still looking to hire Devon, so he applied directly there a bit ago. They haven't called him, yet, but, if they do, it will be $11.00/hr with 40 hours a week with optional overtime every other Saturday. In this area, about $10.00/hr is pretty average for a factory worker, so it's good for us.
Even if he gets the job, though, we will definitely be a low-income family. We will probably still be considered low-income if I get a job. What advice do you have for living on a low-income? Currently, we're living with his parents. When we were both working and getting $10.00/hr each, it was fantastic. We were saving money, paying off our debts(just under $4k due to student fees and various small things), and were getting back on our feet. We had originally planned on saving up for a few months, paying off at least most of our debts, and getting our own place. Now, that seems so much more distant as our savings has dwindled down to less than $500 and we're having a baby in a week!! We have all of the things we need for our son, but it's still very scary not knowing. We have loads of support from family and friends, but we really hate to have to ask anyone for anything. My freelance art commissions are few and far between and certainly won't provide an income, and he is trying so hard to find a job but so few places are hiring now.
I'm looking for support, so please do not be mean. The last time I asked a forum about our financial problems, people were throwing in my face that I'm a bad fit for a mother and I should place my son for adoption and things like that... I know we can get back on our feet, it's just a matter of when.
Since I've kind of jambled on here and there are various things in this post, let me be specific about my question... I have two of them.
1.) Do you live on a low income or on one income(don't feel that you have to answer this; it's just a curiosity, and I know it's personal and many may not be comfortable stating such a thing publicly), and what advice do you have for living on a low income and living frugally?
2.) If you are a work-at-home/stay-at-home parent, what do you do to make money on the side? Do you make enough to make up an entire second income?
Thank you in advance to anyone who answers!