Hitting bottom, trying to bounce...

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AnonyMoosez
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 4/1/2009 3:00 PM (GMT -7)   
New to the site. Just thought it was time to reach out to somebody, and I'm too embarrassed, ashamed, mistrusting to approach anyone I know. I've been battling depression most of my life, and all of my adult life. I'm 26 now, and have been on and off multiple types of medication for depression and anxiety for the past five years. I probably should have been taking something for much longer than that, probably since I was 13 or so, but I was too proud to ask for or accept help. You'll see this as a recurring theme.

I'm a relatively intelligent person. Graduated HS in the top 10% of my class. Attended architecture school at a prestigious university (top 10 in the field). I've been three credits short of graduating for the past three years now, partially due to my depression, partially due to uncontrollable financial circumstances and relocating.

I was working at a large firm for about a year, and for a while I thought I was kind of happy, that my life was going in the right direction and that I was finally going to be able to overcome my own doubts and turn my life into what I know I am capable of, and in some ways the life that I feel I have earned. around eight months ago, I was laid of as the company downsized multiple times and finally shut down. After three months of searching for a job with no luck, I moved back across the country to live with my parents.

After six months living back in the state with the (statistically) worst economy in the nation, my unemployment benefits have run out, and I feel like I have officially hit rock bottom. I am also unable to afford health insurance and the last of my medication ran out months ago. With a few thousand dollars worth of outstanding credit card debt, and student loans on top of that, I don't know what to do. I've sent hundreds of resumes to firms around the world. It hurts to even wake up in the morning.

Worst of all, I'm not even sure that I want to be an architect anymore, especially in this economy when nobody is building and probably wont be much in the next decade. I have a strong grasp of science and engineering, but my heart lies in design and art. My entire immediate family works in accounting and most of my extended family does too. I really don't have any career connections through my family, and I have burned most of my bridges with old classmates and professors, vastly due to my social anxiety and awkwardness.

I'm mostly here venting, because I need to get this out of my head. But if anyone would like to share some advice or their own experience, I would be glad to hear from you.

Post Edited (AnonyMoosez) : 4/1/2009 4:29:19 PM (GMT-6)


Raniah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1190
   Posted 4/1/2009 3:29 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi AM,

It sounds to me like you have a lot going for you. You have a sharp intelligence, talent, artistic sensitivity, and it seems like you have confidence in your abilities, which you should. These are all valuable qualities, AM, and I wonder if maybe you would benefit from talking to your doctor or other qualified person about your depression and your current circumstances in order to help you to move forward and give you some hope.  I see your comment about health insurance, and wonder if there are any free services which offer counseling in your area....?  You obviously have a great deal to offer the world, and it saddens me to think of you feeling stuck and miserable. Have you pursued any debt/credit counseling? Or perhaps some career counseling? I only suggest this because I have had to change careers a couple of times and I found that there were options out there which I wouldn't have known about or considered had I not investigated things with a local agency. This agency was government-funded, so I was able to get a lot of help and advice for no cost. These are only suggestions, in my effort to help you with your situation. I would strongly encourage you to talk to someone about the depression, first and foremost, as there are a lot of valuable tools out there that could help you. I send you my best wishes, and hope very much that you will continue to post to us.

Post Edited (Raniah) : 4/1/2009 4:32:32 PM (GMT-6)


Becky77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1768
   Posted 4/1/2009 3:44 PM (GMT -7)   
I typed a perfect response, but my computer timed-out and it was lost....so I'm gonna try again! (don't think it'll be as good as the original, but I'll try!)

AM,

I'm happy you found HW. Everyone here is so caring and understanding, and we all pull for each other in our times of need. I know that it's hard sometimes to ask for help, or to go to the doctor about depression, but in the end, it's well worth it. As you know from the past, medicines and other techniques such as CBT can take you from hopelessness to happiness. It's obviously not going to be an overnight fix, but someone will be here to listen if you need to vent as you try to get things in your mind in order. I am confident that since you're a strong, intelligent person, you'll find a way to get to a better you.

We'll all be here for you to vent to as you need. I hope you keep us updated and let us know how things are going for you. smilewinkgrin
Becky

31 yr old female-dx with Crohn's in '97 after emergency resection and appendectomy, 2nd resection '05
Currently on Humira, Prilosec, Effexor, Seroquel, Calcium, Vit D, sublingual B12; phenergan, ultram, clonazepam as needed


AnonyMoosez
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 4/1/2009 3:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Raniah,

Thank you for your reply. Do you know what type of program it was that offered you free career counseling? I have looked into seeing someone in that capacity, but have been unable to locate any programs that do it for free. Free online career tests only go so far, and most of them tell me what I already know, that my strengths would be a great fit as an architect. I think much of the depression is caused by living back with my parents. I was the last of four children, and when I moved out for the last time three years ago, they had been parents continuously for over 36 years. Now that I'm back, there is constant tension between me and my very stoic, quiet, intelligent father and my free-spirited, artistic and idealistic personality with my mother always doing her best to be the mediator. The ironic thing is, I've always said that I hate my father, citing our extreme differences, when I think that what I want more than anything else in the world is to feel like I've made him proud.

Raniah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1190
   Posted 4/1/2009 4:36 PM (GMT -7)   
AM,

I am so sorry, I should have clarified that I am writing from Ontario. I do not have first hand knowledge of what gov't programs are available for career counseling in the U.S. (and I was hoping that there would be something available to you, which is why I suggested it. I didn't mean to mislead you or be insensitive to your situation, so please forgive me). Do you still have ties to the school you went to (administratively speaking....I realize you have burned some bridges), and if so, would they have any info on that?

As far as living with your parents again, I can certainly relate from past experience. I was your age when I moved back home due to personal/financial circumstances (including having to leave law school), and it wasn't easy. My parents were very vocal about their disappointment in me (I hope yours have not been so expressive in that way), and I wished so much for things to be different. I will say, the arrangement was temporary, even though I certainly was afraid it wouldn't be at the time. I had to start with the basics, and I finally found a job as a clerk in a bookstore, which gave me a little income to use as a base for myself. I worked my way up from there, taking the odd night/weekend course when I could afford it, and eventually found a job that was better-suited to me and a little more lucrative....and so it continued from there. I don't know if your job search has been limited to something in or close to your field of study, but perhaps there is some kind of job out there that would help you to get back on your feet or at least give you a bit of extra money right now.

I do understand how difficult this must be for you, AM, and I'm so sorry for what you are going through. I'm hesitant to make more suggestions in the vein of counseling, as I don't know what kind of depression resources are available to you in your area without health insurance. Have you checked the resources thread on this board? Perhaps there is something listed there that would be of interest or help to you. I wish I could say or do more! I do know that you have come to a good place to talk about things, and I hope that as a group we can support you and come up with further ideas for you.

AnonyMoosez
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 4/1/2009 6:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Raniah,

I know there are differences between the health care and government systems in the US and Canada, but I will look into it and I appreciate you sharing your experiences.

It's kind of funny; I feel so poorly being in the situation that I am in, but I look at what some other people are going through in this recession and I tell myself that I have no real right to feel bad about where I am. I still have food in my stomach and a roof over my head (granted I wish that it wasn't my parents roof). I almost feel guilty when I find myself feeling bad about where I am.

Although my doctor diagnosed me as more depressed than manic depressive, I'm not convinced that I'm not bipolar. I work so hard to put on a happy face and look "normal" when I'm in public, and sometimes I do a pretty good job of even fooling myself. Very few people that know me have any idea of how bad I have been and how bad I still am.

After a few hurtful relationships, both friendly and romantic, I just stopped allowing myself to become close to anyone or let anyone get close to me. Nobody knows my struggles, but I've never felt so alone in my life. I'm also hesitant to create any relationships where I am now because I move a lot and I hope to find a job or something somewhere away from here soon. Twice before, I moved while dating someone whom I shared strong feelings for and ended up hurting them, and myself admittedly.

I think that what I should do is move to where I think I have the best opportunity to thrive. Even without a job, I should just move, and live frugally. I could hopefully find a job as a server somewhere, I can't even find one of those where I live now... the unemployment rate in my county is nearing 15%. I'm looking at a few graduate schools, but I am hesitant about spending that much more time and money getting my masters in a degree which I'm not sure I want for my career. At least that way, I might be able to establish residency and pay in state tuition when I do go back to school. I just don't want to fool myself into thinking that I am running towards something rather than running away from my troubles.

THE HAPPY TURTLE
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 18757
   Posted 4/1/2009 8:03 PM (GMT -7)   

smilewinkgrin   smilewinkgrin   anonymoosez,

firstly, hi & welcome 2 the community. sorry if i miss stuff, still having a little trouble focusing!! and memory too!! i too did uni here in oz, became sick and psychotic, 2 years in i was failing etc, i left. currently doing study after 8 yrs, cert 4 level. the course was what i thought i wanted to do in life-(uni) but it really wasn't, i even worked in the feild for 8 years. so follow your dreams, the money will come if you enjoy what you do. yeah it is difficult all over the world as raniah alluded to. it is stuffed here in oz too!! that is why i am studying for the qualification in the area that my mind and heart yearns for! i hope you do the same, ps all learning is positive, and sometimes we need to learn so that we follow our hearts desires.

luv and compassion to you. please let me know your progress if that is okay. have a few happy faces from me.

thanx for your courage in posting, the community is wonderful. each with beautiful gifts, as i have found out!!!! smilewinkgrin tongue   jamiee.37, male.


Raniah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1190
   Posted 4/2/2009 2:47 PM (GMT -7)   
AM,

It's obvious that you've given your situation a great deal of thought and effort. I really applaud you for that....it's not easy when you're in a tough situation and struggling, financially and emotionally. I think your idea about trying to get a new start somewhere else might be the ticket. I can tell that you're not the type to rush headlong into something without checking it out a bit first, so I won't get too wordy on the advice about that! I do hope, wherever you decide to live, that you are able to find a job that will give you some extra money to live on and to use towards school, or whatever you desire, in the future. I hope you will keep posting here so we can offer support or even a listening ear. Still wishing you the very best!

Aurora60
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1249
   Posted 4/2/2009 5:37 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi AM. I am glad you posted and want you to know as others have said that you will have many friends here and a lot of support.  In terms of finding a dr. or getting on meds have you tried applying for medicaid?  Not medicare which is for 65 and older but if you are out of a job and out of unemployment insurance you may be able to get medicaid benefits that would cover your meds and maybe to see a counselor.  I think the one person you need to concentrate on now is you.  I know you worry about disappointing your father, but he should understand that depression is an illness and not something that you have chosen.  You should be trying just to please yourself.  You say you are artistic.  Could you possibly be a graphic designer?  Are there any community colleges that are low cost you could attend?  Since your mother seems to be very caring and is the one who steps in can you depend on her to help you?  Possibly they could give you a personal loan that would get you back in school.  I don't know where you live but have you tried to get your unemployment benefits reinstated?  That just might be possible.  I know you are trying very hard and you sound very intelligent.  If you can get help with the depression that may make things easier to move on to a job.  Also, with the economy as bad as it is sometimes you just need to take a job offer that you might not like too much but can bring in a few dollars. I wish you the best and hope you will keep posting to tell us how you are doing.  Keep positive thoughts as that kind of a good attitude helps you.  Just so you know, don't feel bad about moving home.  My 35 yrs old son has always lived with me.  But then I am the only one he has to contend with but it would be nice to see him get independent.  He does have a job, he is a teacher's aide for special needs children but the pay isn't too good.  And I can assure you lots of parents are having their adult children moving back home. Take care and keep posting.  There is always someone to lend you support. By the way one of my friends had to move in with her children because she lost her job. It goes both ways.

Aurora


Aurora60
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1249
   Posted 4/2/2009 5:56 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi again, AM, just had another idea.  You mentioned you are good at engineering.  What about finding a trade type school with courses specific to leading to a career?  Most of these schools are not very expensive, the length of time to learn a trade is less than college and they usually have a career couselor to help with finding a job. Just a thought but felt you might want to consider this.

Aurora

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