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Dont know where my life is going

  • 23-11-2020 1:36am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭


    Im not sure where to start with this, just need to get this out of my head and out into the open with the hope of gaining some feedback.
    Im in my 30's, single, live at home with the family. Ive had bad mental health for all my adult life, ive really struggled with depression and social anxiety, I dont have many friends and have had trouble with making new friends as an adult. I was very insecure in my 20's and pushed allot of people away as a result. Im much calmer now but still struggle to connect with people, theres an invisible barrier that I just cant get past when in social situations. Im also hyper aware of being judged negatively and shut down completely when I feel like im being judged.
    For instance, when im in the car with certain people who I know will judge me if I make a mistake, I cannot drive, physically cannot do it, it's like im a new learner all over again.
    Its so bad that if certain people ask me what time it is and I have to read a 12 hour clock, I cant tell them what time it is, even though I can read a clock, in that moment the fear of being wrong and judged for it, I shut down and cannot read that clock. 2 small examples but this happens in lots of different ways when in social situations. I dont know if that makes sense but it's my best way of explaining it. Its like a wall goes up.
    Ive been to several counsellors and 4 gp's over the last 10 years and they have been great for giving me somewhere to vent, I learned some mindfulness and cbt to help cope with negative thinking and depression but its been generally useless for overcoming self esteem issues, past trauma, social anxiety and relationship issues.

    Despite having 2 university qualifications ive not had a stable job, I bounce around from one temp job to another and generally feel undermined within the jobs, not really considered part of the staff etc. I exclude myself to a good extent but even when I try I tend not to be liked by people, I work hard, im reliable and try my best but just dont fit in. Its probably got something to do with my past and current issues but hay ho, it is what it is.
    My career never took off and most of the time I dont have much money. When I have money I save but I dont have much savings, 4k in total.

    Im not at all where I thought I would be in life, in my teenage years I had such high hopes and dreams for myself, nothing in my life is what I thought it would be.

    The only people I have in my life are my immediate family but we've always had a strange family dynamic. I always felt like a scapegoat's within the family, got blamed for everything, had more responsibility, I was expected to clean the house, iron clothes from a very young age while siblings didnt have to. Siblings where egged on to annoy me/bully me at home by parents, Nothing I ever did was right, I was never good at anything, never got any praise, I wasnt allowed to socialise much either and spent allot of time alone in my room besides going to school but I was bullied in school so didnt like going. Home and school where hell.
    As an adult its not much easier, I feel like I am constantly having to stand up for myself and ensuring the relationship between us is amicable as they can easily start making life very difficult.
    Its hard to explain this, theyre both very immature despite their ages, my dad sometimes reminds me of a 16 year old. He's not paternal at all and is more like a housemate than a dad, he's really judgmental of my situation but has never helped or supported me in anyway. Dont ever remember him teaching me or my siblings anything or being involved in any meaningful ways in our lives. He was always just there but would criticize us.

    Now my parents are in their 60's and I worry about when they pass away, ill be completely alone, I worry about their old age and having to look after them. I worry about me, alone, single, childless, friendless..
    Neither of my parents look after themselves, my dad drinks allot, he wont go to doctors despite having medical issues that are already limiting him in what he can do.
    He works for himself doing manual jobs but techniqually isnt known to revenue. He isnt on social welfare payments or anything, just works cash in hand and spends what he earns when he earns it. He has no savings and no pension. He inherited money when his own parents died but he spent it on expensive suits and shoes that he doesnt wear costing up to 1000 euro, he gambled and drank allot of it away, mostly just blew it all away.
    My mother has several health issues, has a terrible diet, doesnt exercise or look after her health in anyway.
    She will have a pension but very little, her jobs not that well paid. She also inherited money when her parents died but similarly she blew most of it away.
    I worry that the financial burden will fall on me when I havnt even begun to get my own life in order.
    Ive been trying desperately to get a life, I volunteer, ive been to counselling lots throughout the years, moved away from home for half my 20's, got qualifications, apply to jobs all the time but remain in the same place for whatever reason just cant seem to get my **** together.
    I have a very bad feeling about my future and worry about where or how im going to end up.
    Any feedback appreciated.
    Thanks.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 601 ✭✭✭Magicmatilda


    Hi OP,

    Given that you have 4k in savings, I'd be curious as to why you are living with your parents. Especially as you say there is a strange family dynamic?

    I think you first port of call should be moving back out to gain some independence.

    You say you attended counselling, how long were you in counselling with the same counsellor for?


  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser


    Hi OP,

    Given that you have 4k in savings, I'd be curious as to why you are living with your parents. Especially as you say there is a strange family dynamic?

    I think you first port of call should be moving back out to gain some independence.

    You say you attended counselling, how long were you in counselling with the same counsellor for?

    Thanks
    Why dont I move out? For a couple of reasons.
    The main reason is financial, rent is really high and I cant afford it, I could spend all my savings on rent but I feel like that would be a waste of my savings and once theyre gone on rent, which they would be within 6 months, I would then struggle to pay rent.
    Work is unsteady and unreliable so its difficult to predict if I will have money for rent from one month to the next.
    Living at home gives me no option to save, something I could never do while renting.
    I dont feel as if im losing any independence from living at home, we live in a big enough house in town, close to everything. I have a few friends that live in the same area, sometimes we meet up for walks or movie & drink nights.
    I have pets here.
    Im not reliant on my parents in anyway, I clean, look after all my own washing, cooking, food shopping, have my own internet & pay money to my parents each week.
    I lived out of home for 6 or 7 years from age 19, I hated it. I had no independence because all of my money was spent on rent. I couldnt save anything, the living conditions where cramped. I hated it.
    What family doesnt have its problems? As adults we all get along much better but when I was younger, and dependent on them there were problems.
    The biggest issue I face with living at home is the stigma and judgement from other people. I dont think I would mind it so much if society didnt make me feel like such a loser for not having my own home or not renting. I suppose this goes back to the social anxiety and negative feelings I get when I feel judged. Even though im not doing anything wrong by living at home, I feel intense shame.
    Having said that, ive been on Tinder for the past 4 months and the majority of people I have matched with and spoke to, have all lived at home so I understand its common to do so is in this day & age but I still cant shake those negative feelings like im a failure.
    Another reason I dont want to move out is the loneliness id have to deal with, I dont want to slip back into a depressive episode.
    I dont want to live with strangers and have no friends available to move in with.
    Those are my reasons.

    I went to the first counsellor for about a year, another counsellor I was seeing for 9 months, another one after her for about a year. I have seen 3 HSE therapists, one for 6 weeks, one for 3 weeks and finally one for 10 weeks. I found them all to be the same, very helpful for over coming mild depression and anxiety symptoms but I feel that my issues go deeper than that. I learned coping mechanisms, I have much better mental health over all, I can spot the signs of depression when they start and can deal with general anxiety much better but I have still have allot issues with social anxiety that I didn't find counselling helpful for.


  • Registered Users Posts: 601 ✭✭✭Magicmatilda


    Just to clarify the only reason I asked about living at home was no so much a judgement that you should be living away more that given you have said the below I wonder how you can heal from the trauma that might have arisen from growing up in such a horrible atmosphere, when you ae still surrounded by the people.

    As an adult its not much easier, I feel like I am constantly having to stand up for myself and ensuring the relationship between us is amicable as they can easily start making life very difficult.
    Its hard to explain this, theyre both very immature despite their ages, my dad sometimes reminds me of a 16 year old. He's not paternal at all and is more like a housemate than a dad, he's really judgmental of my situation but has never helped or supported me in anyway. Dont ever remember him teaching me or my siblings anything or being involved in any meaningful ways in our lives. He was always just there but would criticize us.


    I grew up in a dysfunctional family and there is no way I could heal from that if I had stayed living at home, for me, the first step was getting away to get some perspective on things. That meant working in an industry that beings me no fulfillment or enjoyment but it does allow me to live a life free of my family. Don't get me wrong I still see them but in a much healthier and safe way for me.


  • Registered Users Posts: 625 ✭✭✭dd973


    'Its so bad that if certain people ask me what time it is and I have to read a 12 hour clock, I cant tell them what time it is, even though I can read a clock, in that moment the fear of being wrong and judged for it, I shut down and cannot read that clock. 2 small examples but this happens in lots of different ways when in social situations. I dont know if that makes sense but it's my best way of explaining it. Its like a wall goes up.'

    Think I know where you're coming from with this, does it feel like you've 'always got the handbrake on', that's how it feels for me, It crossed my mind out walking earlier today that the thought of hearing my own voice out in the air openly would instantly trigger internal discomfort whereas there's seems to be loads of people whom are completely and irritatingly unaffected by this, a bit like when you see some politician on tv giving a speech or an interview seemingly exuding complete inner sangfroid or see some boorish extrovert hold court in a pub.


  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser


    Just to clarify the only reason I asked about living at home was no so much a judgement that you should be living away more that given you have said the below I wonder how you can heal from the trauma that might have arisen from growing up in such a horrible atmosphere, when you ae still surrounded by the people.

    As an adult its not much easier, I feel like I am constantly having to stand up for myself and ensuring the relationship between us is amicable as they can easily start making life very difficult.
    Its hard to explain this, theyre both very immature despite their ages, my dad sometimes reminds me of a 16 year old. He's not paternal at all and is more like a housemate than a dad, he's really judgmental of my situation but has never helped or supported me in anyway. Dont ever remember him teaching me or my siblings anything or being involved in any meaningful ways in our lives. He was always just there but would criticize us.


    I grew up in a dysfunctional family and there is no way I could heal from that if I had stayed living at home, for me, the first step was getting away to get some perspective on things. That meant working in an industry that beings me no fulfillment or enjoyment but it does allow me to live a life free of my family. Don't get me wrong I still see them but in a much healthier and safe way for me.

    Thanks Yes I understand what you mean. When I moved out of home for several years I felt so unstable, it wasnt healing, I suppose with the lack of money, high rents, my pets being here, having friends close by etc it really suits me to stay here for now. I mostly do my own thing, my room is at the end of the house and my parents never come down this end of the house. I suppose my post focused on the negative but it's not always negative, most of the time its fine, I can deal with it. I am able to stand up for myself now so we have a bit more of an amicable relationship. Sometimes they revert back to old ways but I stand my ground. Our relationship is better for it. Ive become quite good at respectfully setting boundaries while avoiding conflict.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser


    dd973 wrote: »
    'Its so bad that if certain people ask me what time it is and I have to read a 12 hour clock, I cant tell them what time it is, even though I can read a clock, in that moment the fear of being wrong and judged for it, I shut down and cannot read that clock. 2 small examples but this happens in lots of different ways when in social situations. I dont know if that makes sense but it's my best way of explaining it. Its like a wall goes up.'

    Think I know where you're coming from with this, does it feel like you've 'always got the handbrake on', that's how it feels for me, It crossed my mind out walking earlier today that the thought of hearing my own voice out in the air openly would instantly trigger internal discomfort whereas there's seems to be loads of people whom are completely and irritatingly unaffected by this, a bit like when you see some politician on tv giving a speech or an interview seemingly exuding complete inner sangfroid or see some boorish extrovert hold court in a pub.

    Im not sure what you mean? I dont think you understood, maybe I didnt explain myself right.
    Im not extroverted but im comfortable with that, dont need to be life and soul of the party, I can chat comfortably with my friends, dont want lots of attention and dont envy people who have that.

    Its more anxiety and a total mental block. Like I just shut down completely when faced with any situation where I could embarrass myself or look stupid. Especially if I feel I will be treated or spoken to badly because of making a mistake.
    I cant control it at all. The car is an example, when I have to drive to certain people, I cant even start the engine, the car will cut out, jilt and not go, I feel like I am doing everything right but it's just not working. I will then be all over the road, stall at every stop and have difficulty starting the car again. When I drive with people who dont make me feel nervous, I drive almost perfectly from start to finish with no problems.
    When I have to read a clock around someone im unsure of, my head goes completely blank.
    When im around certain people who im unsure of I cant even speak, I shake and stutter, cant even look them in the eye. Its like im overcome with intense fear. Its like standing off the edge of a tall building, I freeze.


  • Registered Users Posts: 728 ✭✭✭bertiebomber


    Its really no ones biz where you live - at home where you can have your pets without a nasty landlord lording it over you sounds good to me and if your parents are not trying to kick you out forget other peoples opinion.

    if you need an vague excuse on tinder say you are a carer for one of your parents as they had a fall. Lots of people dont like their parents and have dysfunctional situation s with them and cant live near them - you can thats a plus its nice . My friend committed suicide last week cherish all the time you have with family and anyone who questions your life choices tell them to fcuk off also pets are way better than anyone arsehole on tinder !


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