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School and Bipolar Disorder? How do you do it? Please share your experiences, your victories, and even your disappointmens. We understand how hard it must be from high school to college to grad school. Hope you can share with us and find the support you need.

by SoreBrain » Sun Jun 19, 2016 10:16 am

Have so much homework due at midnight tonight that I haven't even started. Not stressed at all about it which is weird but I really don't care.

Every time I think about school, I think about graduating and then that leads me to think about getting a job and I just don't know if I can do it anymore.

I worked retail for 5 years and hated my life so much. I was miserable. Then I worked at a bank for 3 years and was deeply deeply depressed. I quit the bank and have done my own photography here and there with little jobs in between. I just can't seem to do the whole working for someone else for so little. I feel owned and like I'm being locked in a cage.

I'm terrified of going back to work. My husband says I don't need to, but if it will make me better he wants what I want. So lucky to have him. I feel like I'm getting a degree for nothing and wasting time just for a stupid piece of paper I might never use.

I'm so close though. Seriously only have until next May and then I'm done. As long as I pass all of my classes.

My husband is talking about going back for his masters so he can get promoted and bring even more money in.

Should I finish what I started or use that as an excuse to take a break from school?

:-(
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by Anjikun » Sun Jun 19, 2016 10:53 am

It sounds like a tough decision. I just wanted to let you know you are not alone in finding it extremely difficult to do a regular job.

My background is translation and teaching (English as a Second Language) and I remember how much I hated my first in-house translation job. I remember literally feeling like I was walking into a tomb when I would go into the building in the morning. Most of the money I earned as a translator was freelance (working at home). However I wasn't great at that either because once I finished a job I couldn't stand to be in the house anymore waiting for clients to call me and would go out and ignore the calls. In my experience the "freedom of being self-employed" is kind of a myth, because, at least in translation, to build a clientele you basically have to accept everything that comes your way no matter what.

Teaching worked better for me, but now I am too old and haven't taught for too long, so no one wants to hire me. I have given up and accepted poverty. Now when I am feeling well I am an oil painter, which is fabulous. I recently bought a really good camera because I got an unexpected "business premium" with my tax return because I worked on a translation project freelance last summer (and the guy that does my taxes is a genius).

You mentioned you take pictures as well. What camera do you have?
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by Anjikun » Sun Jun 19, 2016 10:55 am

Also, sorebrain, I think I missed what degree you are trying to finish...
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by SoreBrain » Sun Jun 19, 2016 1:04 pm

I feel the same way about freelance. When I quit the bank, I took everything that came my way and I was very unhappy and people drive me nuts. I don't know if it's worse working alone, because every individual person feels like they own you and can treat you however they want because they are paying you, but then everyone feels the need to try to negotiate too. Like no, you wouldn't go into a store and try to negotiate a price.

I have a hard time with grey areas, which is mostly why I always got in trouble and was frustrated at the bank, because there were rules, but the higher ups would only use them when they wanted to for certain people. I would do my job according to the book and constantly get in trouble because they would break those rules for certain customers when they felt like it instead of treating everyone the same.

I treat everyone the same. Period. I've always been a black and white person and get so frustrated when a teacher/manager/anyone would treat equal people differently just because they felt like it.

The only times I ever got in trouble in school was if I was standing up for someone being mistreated. The principal knew if I was coming to his office that one of his staff members was about to get in big trouble. I was a straight A student with many extra curricular activities and a very respected name. I don't fuck around if someone is treated unfairly.

And I digress... sorry about that tangent.

I just sold my extra crap camera which was a Canon Rebel t1i that has just been collecting dust, but I use my Canon 70D quite often even if I'm not getting paid. I have a beautiful 2 year old, so she makes it hard not to use it lol

I am in school for Accounting. I love every aspect of accounting except for income tax. I think it calls to me, because it's very hard for numbers to lie and it's pretty black and white. :-)
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by cincidak » Sun Jun 19, 2016 1:59 pm

I think that if you are emotionally able to finish you should do so. Any accomplishment for us bipolar folks is huge. However....do what is best for your health. Either way you are not a failure. Our illnesses are chronic, and can be quite debilitating. I hope whatever decision you make you are at peace with.
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by SoreBrain » Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:22 pm

cincidak wrote:I think that if you are emotionally able to finish you should do so. Any accomplishment for us bipolar folks is huge.


I agree. I'm going to attempt the full schedule in the fall and see where I am after. If I fail any of my classes, I don't know if I can make it through the spring right now. I might have to take a break, but if I pass all the classes in the fall, I will be forcing myself to go in the spring to finish my last 3 courses.

To me, it's starting to not make sense for me to continue, when my husband could be actually using a masters if he returns, but it's not really hurting us right now, because of all the grants and scholarships I've been getting. I've lost passion for school, which is the worst thing I could do. If I'm not passionate about something anymore, I find a way to get rid of it. :-(
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