Q: It is 3 a.m. and I can’t sleep. I am so worried; I am in a constant state of panic. I lost my job last year and haven’t been able to find another one. I have looked every place and just can’t even find a job that I would be willing to do. At first I wasn’t too worried because I was sure I could find another job relatively easily. I have a degree in business and worked at the last company for five years. I had a pretty good saving but I have used that up.
I am now down to living on unemployment, which isn’t much. I can’t pay my bills and have creditors calling me all the time. I don’t even want to answer the phone or open the mail.
I can’t afford to do anything so my friends have gradually dropped off. For awhile they called, but every time they wanted to do something I had to let them know that I couldn’t go, and that I can’t afford to entertain them here at my house, so they just stopped calling. The guy I was dating left me for someone with a job. I guess nobody wants to be around a loser. My lifestyle has changed so much I just can’t believe it.
So now I am up in the wee hours of the morning, worrying about bills, house payments and lack of money. This goes on so many nights, and then I am so tired during the day that I don’t want to do anything. I just don’t know what to do.
My parents have offered to let me move in with them until I get back on my feet, but I just can’t imagine doing that. They are nice and I love them, but living with them when I am 32 years old? I am used to living on my own, making my own decisions and paying my own way. What a humiliation that would be.
At first I was pretty good at looking for jobs, but now it is hard to even look. I know there won’t be anything, anyway. I thought about moving to another city where maybe I could get a job, but I don’t know where to go or how I would pay for the move. I don’t even know what my question to you is. I know you can’t find me a job, which is what I need, but do you have any ideas?
Haven’t Got A Plan
A: It seems to me that you need a safety net for a while. I think you should reconsider moving in with your parents, at least for a bit. You say that the only reason you don’t see this as an option is that you would be humiliated living with parents at your age. And yet, many folks your age – and older – have moved back with family, especially in these economic times. It might be helpful if you saw this as an opportunity to heal from the trauma you have been going through and regain your mental health so you could start looking for a job again and begin putting your life back together.
You need also to address your depression and anxiety. A therapist could help you sort through some of the things going on, but if you can’t afford one, talk to your doctor about not being able to sleep and not being able to job search. She or he can determine if an antidepressant might help you cope better and alleviate the depression so you can actively search for a job. Some antidepressants also help control your anxiety.
To find a job with the way the economy is, you will need to broaden your views of what kind of job you can do – and are willing to do. It is important that you talk to others about the type of job you are looking for and your qualifications. You never know who will be aware of a job that is opening up. Networking is one of the best and most successful ways to find employment. Also contact the Michigan Works near you. They have many services to help individuals find employment, as well as a job bank that employers post to daily. It doesn’t cost anything to use their services.
I know this seems like a dark time, but things will get better. Let me know how you are doing.