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I just keep screwing up my life... what's the point?

Discussion in 'Suicidal Thoughts and Feelings' started by umguy123, Apr 3, 2012.

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  1. umguy123

    umguy123 New Member

    I don't really know why I'm bothering to post anything, I doubt that anyone can say anything that I haven't already thought to myself. I've also never been very good at talking about myself, or especially my problems so I'm sure whatever I end up writing won't make a whole lot of sense. I also realize that what I've written here is like a book and nobody will probably be interested in reading it anyway.

    I just can't seem to make anything in my life work out the way it's supposed to. Everyone else seems to have their lives so put together and are making forward progress while I seem to be in this perpetual state of spinning my wheels, if not slipping backwards more and more. I guess my problems started a few years back when I was in college (for the first time). I went into school confident that I knew what I wanted to study and what kind of a career would result from that (in case you're wondering it was Chemical Engineering), but after taking the intro class (my very first semester) I realized that I would hate doing that kind of work day in and day out for the rest of my life. This realization pretty much shattered all of my carefully made plans (and I'm a planner so there were plans for everything - except for changing my major). I then proceeded to bounce around at the university for 4 years taking classes from all over the place, declaring 3 other majors (officially - and about 5 others unofficially) before settling into an environmental science program. While in the program I needed to do an internship so I went back to the nature center I volunteered at in high school and spent a summer teaching summer nature classes to kids. From the experience working with kids, and after talking to my fellow teachers I realized that maybe I had overlooked a career path I shouldn't have - education.

    The next fall (what should have been my senior year) I went back to school determined to look into my possibilities for becoming a teacher. When I went to the education department they told me that the education program was a masters program only (undergrads could not get a teaching license from them) and that I did not have the GPA to get into the program. My GPA (and transcript) was (and still is) utter crap because when I was bouncing around between possible majors I ended up withdrawing from a number of classes, failing a few, and barely getting by with C-'s in many others. My problem was that once I decided I didn't like something I lost almost all motivation to do it and at a gigantic university with many classes with hundreds of students it was easy to just stop going.

    Since the education department essentially told me not to bother applying to their program I needed to find another solution to my problem. I looked at transferring schools, and even went to visit a week before they would have started (I was admitted and everything), but I let my parents talk me out of it. Since I was stuck back at my old school I started looking at the requirements to teach high school Biology (since I had more science - especially bio - classes than anything else). I looked at the biology program, but again hit the crappy GPA wall. Finally one of my friends suggested that I design my own major. I had looked into some of the ways I could design my own major in the past, but hadn't ever actually talked to anybody about it before. When I finally made an appointment, the adviser I was placed with was perfect - she was willing to listen to what I wanted to do, understood how I'd bounced around, and was willing to help me out (and to top it all off she remembered my name when she saw me outside of her office - that hadn't ever happened to me before).

    So I went through the process of designing my major - mostly this involved writing a 13 page document justifying why I wanted to design my own major, why there wasn't something that already fit with my vision for my future, and justifications for every class I was including in the program. The process took a whole semester but it was eventually approved. Thankfully I had already started taking the classes I needed for it, and we had managed to include many of the classes I had already taken so it only took me an extra year to graduate. Of course most of my friends had already graduated by then so my last year was pretty miserable. That last year wasn't the first time I'd considered suicide, but it was the first time I had actually taken any actions. There were a number of times I sat in my apartment with a knife at my wrist, or rope around my neck ready to just be done with everything but each time I was able to pull myself out of it long enough to tell myself I just needed to make it to graduation and then I could get a job and things would be better.

    Unfortunately I graduated during the worst part of the recession and there were no jobs to be had. I probably sent in a hundred job applications over the summer after graduation and only ever heard back from 3 places (all rejections, not even an interview first). I finally managed to get a seasonal job at Macy's in December, which turned into a part time (and later full time) gig. Unfortunately I was miserable at Macys, especially near the end. I tried going back to school to finish my education classes but my manager wasn't too happy about changing my schedule to accommodate it, and I came away from the classes feeling like I hadn't accomplished anything (they were every other week in the evenings so it's not like we had a lot of class sessions). As the next christmas (2010) rolled around I started hating work more and more (for a variety of reasons, but they don't really matter anymore) and decided I needed to find somewhere else to go to school. I managed to find one and enrolled 3 days before the semester started, moved into the dorms, and quit my job at Macy's.

    At first it seemed like I had made the right decision, I was learning things in class and my field experiences were very positive. However as I've continued in the program (this is my third semester - and last semester of classes before student teaching) I've begun to doubt whether this is what I really want to do. I've never been entirely confident that I wanted to teach in a school all day, every day - I've always been more comfortable in a less formal setting but unfortunately those jobs are exceedingly rare and there aren't really clear ways to get into them. As I have gotten into the later classes in the program it seems like all that we ever talk about are the negatives of teaching - all the standards and testing, problems with kids, parents, etc, and we still don't ever really talk about teaching high school (most of the students in the program are elementary and that's the background most of the professors come from as well). This has had me frustrated for most of the year but it finally blew up in my face this semester.

    This semester I had to take Zoology, Zoology Lab, Historical Geology, Historical Geology Lab (because they said my previous degree didn't have enough of this kind of stuff), Senior Biology Seminar (because I need a "capstone" that my previous degree didn't give me), Pre-Student Teaching (a 1 credit class that is the work of a 3 or 4 credit class since we have to teach for 10 full days including our spring break), Secondary Science Methods, and Middle Level Math methods. I was also supposed to take a Modern Geometry and Reading class but they didn't fit into the schedule so I'll have to do Reading this summer and figure something out for the math class later.

    The problems began with Senior Seminar. I ended up choosing a crappy topic and was forced to change it about 4 weeks into the class; the problem became making up those 4 weeks of work in about 2 weeks. I ended up deciding I wasn't going to be able to get it all done and went to the professor to see about getting an incomplete. Thankfully she was willing to work with me and agreed to the incomplete. I thought this would solve my problems and I would be able to get back on my feet and catch up with the work that had fallen behind in my other classes. Unfortunately the work kept coming and I'm still behind. I also managed to let slide arranging my field experiences for science and math methods (we've always been provided them in the past, but not this time for some reason). I'm now past the drop date for classes, only have one placement arranged, getting emails from my professor and the placement office trying to find out what I have for placements so they can finalize my student teaching placement (I haven't replied because I didn't want them to know I haven't found one since everyone else seemed to be able to right away). I've only been to 1 class in the past two days, most of the weekend and all day yesterday were spent with a knife and coil of rope at my side and right now I just want out of everything.

    I know that if I quit now everyone is going to think I'm even more pathetic than they already do. I know that my "friends" from HS and College look down on me for still being in school and not having a job yet. My family doesn't know what to make of me and we've grown apart the last couple years since I graduated the first time (we've had a couple big fights, including one where I left in the middle of the night and lived out of my car for nearly three weeks). I am completely broke - credit cards maxed out, my part time job paycheck barely covers my car payment and the minimums on my cards. And I'm sure I would continue to have problems finding a job because of my crappy GPA, weird major that nobody ever seems to understand, and being unable to explain what the hell I was thinking for the past few years going back to school and then quitting at the finish line. I don't think I'll even be able to do my student teaching in the fall at this point without my math placement and with my incomplete in seminar. It's just too hard, I just keep screwing everything up and can't seem to get anything right. I don't know why I even bother anymore. I work in 2 hours and I'm not sure if I even want to make it till then, or even if I do I don't know if I'll make it through my shift. Which is ironic because I work for public safety and we are frequently the ones sent to check on people like me.
  2. total eclipse

    total eclipse SF Friend Staff Alumni

    Hi hun i know it seems so hard but try to finish your education okay just finish it so your time spent on it is not wasted Lots of people change their career choices more then once some even when they are later on in years decide to go back to school and try a different path. Talk to you councillors in the school use them get their guidance on how to finish this path okay The if you decide to start a new path at least the last one will have been done with. You sound very intelligent to me hun you have a brain you have ambition you just loose sight of what you want STay on one path until it is done okay do that for YOU h ugs
  3. MorganaNever

    MorganaNever Well-Known Member

    Ok here is my pov.

    I truly have problems with the mentality people seem to be under that everything always has to go in a straight line in life- always straight forward, always working somewhere, everything that doesn't turn into source of profit is seen as a waste, etc.

    See I don't think your education was a waste, even if it may not be your exact profession. You have definitely gained more insight and knowledge then you had. But not everyone is always certain about what they want to do, its not always so simple as to have one main interest and just figuring out how to make it a profession- I understand you can be interested in sth and yet not want to do a job in the field, or that you might like a certain work but don't know if that is for you for the rest of your life. Rest of your life is a very big thing to be decided on so quickly, and who says change is bad.

    I don't think theres anything wrong with going back to school to obtain knowledge in something you only realize later you care about, switching fields, etc... knowledge is never a waste, even if it never turns into the tool to make money.
    I know people always make that a point but it isn't always that simple. OF course you want to work somewhere you enjoy, unfortunately even with a degree from a field you love it may be a problem, on the other hand, it is something to be discovered and there is no rush.

    You are now wondering about what you want, what your interests are... Is it possible for you to perhaps take a year to travel the world? Maybe look into teaching a language in another country or if you have anyone who can help you out make such plan, talk to them. I don't know the details but i know there are options and some people have done this before they even went to school just cause they werent sure what they wanted. Perhaps just looking at it as a year to think, and removing the burden of figuring our your whole career now, will be refreshing. Maybe you can move a bit from your environment, you will get to meet different people, focus on something completely different.

    Traveling is just a suggestion, of course it would be important that your parents support you in that a bit, at least help with some finances.

    I think its absolutely ok to go back to school at any point in your life, and don't feel that horrible urgency now. I know the world seems to put lots of pressure to always have a job and to rush trough education, but education is a beautiful thing and its never wrong to start over.

    I assume youre an American. How bout looking into some Masters program in Europe or even a new BA in something more specific. Just for a change and it might end up being free. of course its not something you can rush in.

    Either way, take a moment. You have a certain education behind you and you need to figure things out. I really think traveling the world, when planned well, can be financially managed, and there are ways you can work while doing that. If that simply isnt an option, maybe take a year off and try learning few different skills without a pressure in needs to be your career or not. I don't know, try to see if any art interests you, read about things, talk to people in different branches of work... Be curious about everything. Use the time youre not working to read about things, perhaps teaching will be a way to help you earn some money for now until you know what you want and can go back to get the needed education.

    Question- cant you take the tests you need for masters, like gmat or gre and if you get a great score, can it help your chances to get into grad program despite your gpe? I dont know exactly cause Im a European who just started living in America now and I plan to go back to school here too so Im just figuring out how the system works myself.
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