How do I plan my way out of this!?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (13 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Here's my litany: I keep whirling and whirling.
Four years ago one of my best friends stole the central idea behind something I'd worked on for years. By the time I found out there was nothing I could do. That was the end of the friendship. Two weeks later, my Ex walked out. That was the end of the relationship. Soon after, I left to do work elsewhere in the country, with every intention of returning, but certainly happy to escape. Then the Ex got ugly only days after my departure. So I stayed away, and the Ex sued for divorce the same month he got engaged, less than a year later. We've been litigating a property settlement ever since.
Months passed, and I went through several forms of discovery. Then I got laid off and was unable to pay my lawyer. The suit stalled for a year, and finally I relocated again, moving back in with family, so I could use my unemployment to pay my lawyer. The case went to trial. But the courts are backed up. I was told that the judgment would be in four months ago, at the latest. No word. Nothing's happening. The damned thing is stalled. I was hoping that some kind of settlement would help with my next step. But the fact is, that's nothing to count on, nor will one be quick in coming, necessarily, even if there were a judgment tomorrow in my favor.
My employment status is beyond stalled, and I've got no money for retraining. I worry that I'm all but unemployable. I was in an industry that got hammered by the recession. In fact, it turns out all of the industries that interest me got hammered by the recession. I've had several ideas. I've explored several avenues. Over a couple of years now, more. But everything comes to naught. I feel like Rip Van Winkle. In terms of my old profession, I no longer want to do what I was doing before, and carpal tunnel also prevents me from doing what I once did. That would be fine if my skills transferred. But so far as I can see, they don't. And in the increasingly unlikely event that they do, I'd be forced back to the city where all this happened because it's closest to where I am now--and that is the last thing I want.
My social life is stalled, too: Four years ago, I had four best friends, all of whom meant a lot to me. Since then, one married and moved, another self-isolated. I made sure not to lean on anyone too heavily when it came to my troubles, so it wasn't that, but over the past few years their respective emails and contacts became increasingly rare. I called them both on it. They both conceded my point, and said that I was right, but it clearly was not going to change anything. Because my feelings had been hurt repeatedly, I gently broke off both relationships. The third I already mentioned. So now I'm just down to one.
I've also dated in the last few years, but two of the three people I dated turned out to be ... married. So I ended both of those relationships. The third (and most recent) was not, thank God, but he just doesn't seem to cope at all well, and although I'm hardly a role model, his disastrous coping skills were downright alarming. None of that matters now that I'm several states away. But I worry about the future. I'm excruciatingly lonely.
And I'm unbelievably broke, more than you can probably imagine--and $10,000 in debt to my lawyer and credit card company (used during part of my unemployment).
I have long-controlled thyroid issues which have also acted up twice over the last year--and which appear to be the reason I've lost about 40% of my hair. Twice!
And the family members I'm staying with are aging fast. In fact, they're not the people I once knew. Each of them has been hospitalized once this year. They were once big readers, but now it's nothing but TV all the time. They also rarely see friends. This doesn't disturb me, so much as it depresses me. If anything happened to either of them, the other would be lost. And I don't know what I'd do in good conscience. I worry that I could never move.
And, honestly, I don't want my adulthood to come down to this. I'm only 45.
So why am I writing you? I guess I was hoping someone would have some instructive story, or ideas for a plan, or some reason to hope. I'm tired of taking "small" steps. I want something to happen. I'm terrified of where I'll be at 50.... I'd like to have some arena of my life under control. But the fact is I don't. I'm trapped, and as a consequence I'm depressed.
(To pre-empt any therapeutic/thyroidic advice: I'd go if I could, but there are 0 resources for the unemployed in my state. I've most definitely looked. As for the thyroid, I am being well-treated for this.)
Throwaway email address at: ISOplans@aol.com.