Nothing to offer

  November 21st, 2011 by triedit

I finally found someone to love–great guy.  He’s willing to be with me warts and all, and yet my depression, problems with work, anxiety and PTSD symptoms are so bad that I can’t imagine he’d stay with me in the long term.  We’ve been married for about a year and half.

My biggest struggle right now is work, but of course that’s affecting my new marriage in a huge way.

I suppose some would say I’m going through mid-life stuff, (I’m 42) but I’ve always struggled with work.  I’ve tried everything I can do with my degrees (English and MFA Creative Writing), but have not found a sustainable way to support myself.  I’ve been unemployed for the bulk of the time that we’ve been married as I came overseas to live with him (he’s British).  Have not been able to find anything other than the few afternoons a week that I do really low-level admin stuff where he works.

I had a crap childhood (standard abuse, neglect, etc with accompanying mental hospital stays) but had always hoped for a life as an adult.  The big disappointment was being on disability for 15 years and living in relative poverty while all my peers started careers.  I couldn’t talk to anyone about why I was in disability since it was for mental health issues.  I became totally isolated since things would fall apart on the “What do you do?” question.  I didn’t do anything.

While I was able to pull myself out enough to get into graduate school, my degree is in fine arts and doesn’t provide a means to gainful employment.  I couldn’t find anything else to study that I was good at.  During my various periods of isolation (as a kid, while in hospitals, while on disability), I comforted myself by imagining being received by some community.  After decades of searching far and wide, I still haven’t found my tribe.  I’m very much a lone wolf, limping around the pack.  Having such a bad experience in the UK was kind of the last straw for me.

Right now I’m so depressed I can’t motivate myself to do anything.  We are moving back to the US (husband got a transfer since things have been so hellish in England with our housing, etc) in about 6 months, but to the NY area.  I have just about zero knowledge of it and after total failure on my part in the last year to make a life and be productive, I’ve got zero confidence that I can do anything.  I pretty much just feel useless, and after feeling so excited as a kid to grow up and have a life, just to be a professional basket case, I don’t know why I would stick around.  I don’t think I am an asset to my husband in any way and just feel like I make his life much more complicated.  I can’t stand the pain of being a loser anymore, especially when I’m around successful people.  I don’t know how to explain myself, that I’ve done nothing.  I was led to believe I had some talent in the writing arena, but then my work just got rejected and now I don’t have any faith that anyone would want to read anything I had to say.  I survived my shit life by telling myself that I would use it, that I would make meaning out of it.  What do I tell myself now–to just kill time for the next forty years…?

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