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Snow_Fox

Objectively at odds with myself.

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I'm going to be honest, I'm unsure if how I feel ranges closer to "unhappy" or closer to "self hatred." Or perhaps just general depression, and lack of feeling in many respects is more akin to it. I digress on semantics.

Long story short, I am 23 unemployed,living with my parents and trying to stay in school. Around the age of 20 I was lucky enough to realize my passion in life is computers, and I want to be a programmer as a means of gainful employment. I have always had bad study habits, so I don't know why I ever thought, or even now think I will do remotely well in college should I manage to stay in.

I have no scholarships, and while I did move out of my parents house for a while to live in the same city as my college having employment at Lowe's for a year, then Radioshack to pay the bills.. My parents have paid for college most of the way through despite bad grades. I realized over time, I hate working with most of those people, particularly at Lowe's. In many cases, management were out right liars, in others they would manipulate situations. They claimed to give a raise once a year with a minimum of .25$ Well, low and behold my girlfriend at the time got a .09$ raise after a year, I got laid off, and about 20+ other people got fired. They then hired an entirely new crew at over a dollar an hour cheaper in many cases. I later worked at radioso phohack, where I loved it for quite some time. I eventually became fed up, however because they were so hell bent on selling accessories, I had to give up sales in order to keep from getting fired. To explain, we had to keep our sales up. If we didn't manage to keep a ratio of accessories to phones, we could lose our job. The hypocrisy over all of it, is that people came to us to get phones for as cheap as possible, so no one wants to pay 20$ on a case when they are there to get something free in the first place.

While attending college, I finally decided to go for a programming degree, because computers have always been my passion. I have been unable to maintain study habits throughout my entire life. I can still recall my parents taunting me as far back as I can remember, "you're going to end up digging ditches, if you don't raise your grades!" And here I am now.. I have finally managed to start really making real progress in school. Although I dropped two classes in the fall, I learned to drop classes when needed... In spring I managed to pass all of my classes (even though I must retake one due to not having a high enough grade). I decided to go to summerschool and ended up taking biology, biology lab and a technical writing course. With biology and the technical writing course being online.. I figured I would do excellent, since I have done well in online classes before. Unfortunately, my technical writing teacher was a bit ambiguous and she seemed to say one thing, but accept another. At some point, I got mixed up on days and missed a test for biology, after dropping technical writing. Since I was doing well in my biology lab, I figured I would just take the bad grade and hit to my GPA in biology, since I could complete the lab and at least be done with the course.

I failed to realize that despite it being a summer course, failure to maintain a GPA of 2.0 means academic suspension from the school. I know that if at the end of spring we are going into academic suspension, and we manage to pull our cumulative GPA over a 2.0 during summer, we can stay in school. However, if we do not manage to pull our GPA over 2.0, it doesn't matter if we make a 2.0 or 4.0 over summer. I figured that the same logic would apply since, I passed the fall semester. I logged in to check my account balance yesterday and it said I am suspended, my courses have all been dropped. I have already sent an email hoping there is some sort of mistake.

At this point, I am expecting my parents to more or less quit paying for my college since I have had so many bad semesters. If they do, I am really unsure what to do in life in general. I don't want to be a leech on the system, I can't stand the stupidity that exist in so many of the jobs I have had, and the life style I want is more or less out of the question with out decent income. I have consistently and repeatedly failed to live up to my own standards. I have no value to society, and I really dislike the idea of having absolutely no job security with out a degree, having no passion for what I do, and not being able to afford the luxuries I want, but am not earning as those are my main passions in life. I already know that even if I were to take out loans, I would still not be able to finish without running myself into a mountain of debt.

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I am really unsure what to do in life in general.

Do you even know what you'd do after getting a degree besides "be a programmer"?

What do you do with yourself now that is productive (as in, stuff besides playing video games)?

Just to mention, I think school costs too much to be worth it. With programming or information technology fields, getting a job without a bachelor's degree is a lot easier than if you wanted to be a lawyer.

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(Disclaimer: I only know what I've read in your post, so maybe my conclusions aren't accurate in one way or another.)

Sounds like you need a "market correction" of life. You've been over-spending (parents' money), under-doing (haven't gotten the degree/learned all that much in school), and have unrealistic expectations (a desired "lifestyle" with no plan to support it).

You talk about a standard of living you want to maintain, but you don't want to attain it through traditional scholastic means, and you don't have many interests otherwise (such as entrepreneurial, or musician, or whatever). How, in real, planned-out terms, are you going to achieve that? Maybe Eiuol's suggestion is something you could do, computer work without schooling. But if the answer is, "I don't know," you at least have to allow that you won't have that standard of living while you figure it out; you can't expect your parents to keep paying for you to live up to their standards, which have been built over decades of work and savings. You also shouldn't expect yourself to be where your parents are at without putting in the decades of work yourself.

Another unrealistic expectation is that your get-by job in the meantime is going to be 100% wonderful, up to all of your highest standard of hopes to get out of working in life. Fact is, you don't run the business, and businesses will have problems. Those two things mean you will likely be frustrated sometimes. The important thing is to do a good job by your own standard, try to please the employer, and make money so that you can keep working toward whatever new aspirations you develop.

You've gotta reset your standards of what it means for you to live as a good person in your current life's reality. It seems like you're thinking ahead of your achievements. Try to re-evaluate your standards for yourself, and also everyone else and how they relate to you. It's a huge, horrible, monumental task, if indeed you've been judging everything in your life in unrealistic ways, but it has to be done to move forward on to actually achieving something. Your starting point has to be realistic for you to then build on that. "Focus on reality." You'll start feeling a little better about yourself and everything after doing this just one time. When it becomes a new habitual way of thinking and evaluating, and when you accomplish things that you think are good and realistic, you'll feel even better -- it will build on itself, and you'll no longer have that awful feeling of ennui. The hardest point is just starting out, as you feel worse now than any other time during the re-evaluating.

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Do you even know what you'd do after getting a degree besides "be a programmer"?

What do you do with yourself now that is productive (as in, stuff besides playing video games)?

Just to mention, I think school costs too much to be worth it. With programming or information technology fields, getting a job without a bachelor's degree is a lot easier than if you wanted to be a lawyer.

My school does a pretty good job of getting anyone hired who works for it. Although I am horrible in other classes, I have generally done well in the computer science courses. Given my rate of improvement, I have suspected that if I continue stay in school I would have an easier time landing a job which pays well enough for me to do most of what I want, or at least be in a career I love working towards the standard of living I personally want.

I have begun getting up at 4:30 in the morning to go exercise. I don't particularly like it, but I am doing my best to set a good schedule and get in shape to improve my quality of life.

Ideally, after college I will be able to afford my own place somewhere, live with my girlfriend, and enjoy life.. Play games, read books, enjoy having a career that is both rewarding and challenging.. instead of tedious and mundane.. Also having the luxury of having a real career.

I've been trying to get into programming for linux or android, but I've found it is hard for me to jump in at any particular spot. I have completed a few courses, and have become fairly competent at programming, Just find it a bit harder to do in my free time without any direction, purpose or reason. I can tell myself "it's to learn", but less than five minutes later I'm distracted...

(Disclaimer: I only know what I've read in your post, so maybe my conclusions aren't accurate in one way or another.)

Sounds like you need a "market correction" of life. You've been over-spending (parents' money), under-doing (haven't gotten the degree/learned all that much in school), and have unrealistic expectations (a desired "lifestyle" with no plan to support it).

You talk about a standard of living you want to maintain, but you don't want to attain it through traditional scholastic means, and you don't have many interests otherwise (such as entrepreneurial, or musician, or whatever). How, in real, planned-out terms, are you going to achieve that? Maybe Eiuol's suggestion is something you could do, computer work without schooling. But if the answer is, "I don't know," you at least have to allow that you won't have that standard of living while you figure it out; you can't expect your parents to keep paying for you to live up to their standards, which have been built over decades of work and savings. You also shouldn't expect yourself to be where your parents are at without putting in the decades of work yourself.

Another unrealistic expectation is that your get-by job in the meantime is going to be 100% wonderful, up to all of your highest standard of hopes to get out of working in life. Fact is, you don't run the business, and businesses will have problems. Those two things mean you will likely be frustrated sometimes. The important thing is to do a good job by your own standard, try to please the employer, and make money so that you can keep working toward whatever new aspirations you develop.

You've gotta reset your standards of what it means for you to live as a good person in your current life's reality. It seems like you're thinking ahead of your achievements. Try to re-evaluate your standards for yourself, and also everyone else and how they relate to you. It's a huge, horrible, monumental task, if indeed you've been judging everything in your life in unrealistic ways, but it has to be done to move forward on to actually achieving something. Your starting point has to be realistic for you to then build on that. "Focus on reality." You'll start feeling a little better about yourself and everything after doing this just one time. When it becomes a new habitual way of thinking and evaluating, and when you accomplish things that you think are good and realistic, you'll feel even better -- it will build on itself, and you'll no longer have that awful feeling of ennui. The hardest point is just starting out, as you feel worse now than any other time during the re-evaluating.

Well for a few points in clarification.. I don't want to do it through academic means.. However, whether it's because I lack the ability, 20 years of bad study habits is shooting me in the foot, or I am just outright dumb I have had difficulty through college. I want to continue, but may be unable to do so.

I don't have any desire to have many of their standards. I outright don't care about television, driving an oversized vehicle, or drinking myself to death. The standard of living I do want, is enough money to afford a decent house, in a decent neighborhood or even something more isolated. Enough money to continue to afford to build moderate to high end gaming rigs, and afford some more quality products such as a decent set of sennheisers to go with my computer instead of those lousy ear buds.

My only standard recently for myself was to do well in school. I really, don't know what is "unrealistic" anymore. I've had people tell me regardless of my situation, I should have done better. I have also heard people say, regardless of my situation, there is no point in blaming anyone besides myself. I accept my share of screw ups, however I don't know if it is in any capacity fair to place any blame on my parents for my repeated academic fails. I have always even in elementary school had poor grades. My parents always said it was my fault for being lazy or day dreaming in class. I have never in anyway felt any less intelligent than other students. For that matter in many ways, I felt above them sometime later on, I guess around 18.. My parents started "bragging" about how I "got over" dyslexia. They said, they even fought to keep me out of special education programs so I wouldn't know I had dyslexia and use it as a crutch. I don't know to what degree I am dyslexic, but the more I pay attention to my mother, the more I notice that she herself has various comprehension problems. To be honest, it was sometime about a year ago.. I had even forgotten they told me.. and I was somewhat tired working at radioshack. A couple was trying to buy something, and for the life of me I couldn't get my 6's and my 9's right when trying to add up their cost. They out of the blue giggled, in a way I perceived to be more nostalgia than anything. They, then asked "you by any chance dyslexic? our daughter makes the same mistake particularly when she is tired" and for the first time ever.. I seriously thought about the fact my parents told me I was dyslexic and that it is not something you "get over".

I have generally resigned to the fact that I am the only one who suffers if I make a bad grade, although I can't help but to wonder if maybe instead of getting yelled at and berated for bad grades... My parents would have actually *done* something to address the isssues perhaps they wouldn't have had to waste money on college... Hell, I personally thought I was seriously finally developing good study habits... and I dropped the ball once over the summer and now I may be out of school for good. On one hand, I would like to think there is more to my screw ups than me being lazy in kindegardern all the way up till college.. On the other hand, most people seem to feel my parents role is completely irrelevant. Objectively, it seems like the only thing that matters is the fact I may not be attending school next semester and the only one I have to blame for that is myself.

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20 years of bad study habits is shooting me in the foot

You realize that YOU are the person in charge of YOUR study habits right?

If you know you have horrible habits then change them. There are plenty of references online that explain how to schedule your study, how to find a stratagem that works for you.

This sounds like nothing more than a cop out.

If it is in you to do well with those subjects that interest you then your problem isn't stupidity, or depression, or anything else, its laziness. You have to direct yourself, you have to integrate the idea that without passing ALL your courses you WILL most likely be left in the situation you dread, without prospects of stable employment, living at a standard below your ideal and possibly even digging ditches, but that would require a heavy machinery operators license so you best set your sights on being the fry guy at McDonald's.

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They said, they even fought to keep me out of special education programs so I wouldn't know I had dyslexia and use it as a crutch.

As though pretending it's not there will help anything. A learning disability is nothing to be taken lightly. It would mean you *cannot* learn in the same way as other people, so in a typical school setting, you won't succeed. Or at least, you'd need specific techniques catered specifically to your needs. Blame is not really something to worry about now (the good ol' coulda' shoulda' woulda'), since what you want to do is progress in your life. Your parents aren't blameless, supposing you really do have some kind of learning disability, dyslexia or whatever else it could be. At the same time, in order to act in accordance with honesty, you can acknowledge now that you might very well have a learning disability, and do something about that.

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You realize that YOU are the person in charge of YOUR study habits right?

If you know you have horrible habits then change them. There are plenty of references online that explain how to schedule your study, how to find a stratagem that works for you.

This sounds like nothing more than a cop out.

If it is in you to do well with those subjects that interest you then your problem isn't stupidity, or depression, or anything else, its laziness. You have to direct yourself, you have to integrate the idea that without passing ALL your courses you WILL most likely be left in the situation you dread, without prospects of stable employment, living at a standard below your ideal and possibly even digging ditches, but that would require a heavy machinery operators license so you best set your sights on being the fry guy at McDonald's.

Take it as you will. I only mentioned it when, the point about re-evaluation of my life was brought up. Don't mistake me doing better in comp sci classes for me doing amazingly well in comp sci classes. I have been reading about, using and fixing computers all of my life. With that said, where I make a C in comp sci classes (or I was proud to have made a B recently) I make a d or f in other classes. I am lucky enough to have a compiler in CMPS classes,so there is no guess work. Also, unlike math or english, I have a program that can be verified to work, not work or act like charles manson on a 4 day meth high. If you objectively believe that someone choose to screw up for 20 years starting at age 3 and is "lazy" for all of that time. There is nothing I can say or do that is going to change your mind.

Just rest assured, whatever lowly opinion you seem to have of me. I probably have worse. I will only say this, if you honestly believe you can pick something up and start doing it for the first time, be my guest. If you don't happen to play video games on a regular basis, go ahead... Try out guild wars. If you don't happen to work out, try running a mile.. not even running really.. Just try to maintain a pace faster than a walk for a mile or two. No matter how "easy" or "simple" something is to do, does not mean you can just pick up a skill and perfect it over night.

As though pretending it's not there will help anything. A learning disability is nothing to be taken lightly. It would mean you *cannot* learn in the same way as other people, so in a typical school setting, you won't succeed. Or at least, you'd need specific techniques catered specifically to your needs. Blame is not really something to worry about now (the good ol' coulda' shoulda' woulda'), since what you want to do is progress in your life. Your parents aren't blameless, supposing you really do have some kind of learning disability, dyslexia or whatever else it could be. At the same time, in order to act in accordance with honesty, you can acknowledge now that you might very well have a learning disability, and do something about that.

Aside from the fact that I'm 265 pounds, (well lost about 8 pounds over last couple weeks). I have started getting up and going to the gym at 430 in the morning.. Doing my best to set a real schedule and stick to it. Outside of that, I have pretty much altogether changed the majority of my habits revolving school... I have started communicating with the teachers, I have started asking other students to explain if they understood something better than me, and I am working against years of looking at something, not understanding it for 30 minutes.. Saying "well I should be done by now.." and then giving up. Keep trying and not getting stuff enough, eventually leads to just quitting trying, or that was my experience in elementary, middle and highschool. I generally do my best to just not think about situations of woulda, shoulda, coulda, they do tend to recur every so often. Then again, I do my best to objectively accept the blame for my screw ups and not place it on other people.

Edited by Snow_Fox

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Take it as you will. I only mentioned it when, the point about re-evaluation of my life was brought up. Don't mistake me doing better in comp sci classes for me doing amazingly well in comp sci classes. I have been reading about, using and fixing computers all of my life. With that said, where I make a C in comp sci classes (or I was proud to have made a B recently) I make a d or f in other classes. I am lucky enough to have a compiler in CMPS classes,so there is no guess work. Also, unlike math or english, I have a program that can be verified to work, not work or act like charles manson on a 4 day meth high. If you objectively believe that someone choose to screw up for 20 years starting at age 3 and is "lazy" for all of that time. There is nothing I can say or do that is going to change your mind.

Just rest assured, whatever lowly opinion you seem to have of me. I probably have worse. I will only say this, if you honestly believe you can pick something up and start doing it for the first time, be my guest. If you don't happen to play video games on a regular basis, go ahead... Try out guild wars. If you don't happen to work out, try running a mile.. not even running really.. Just try to maintain a pace faster than a walk for a mile or two. No matter how "easy" or "simple" something is to do, does not mean you can just pick up a skill and perfect it over night.

You are correct, what I wrote was harsh... and it was supposed to be.

I understand the difference between a physically verifiable right or wrong (as embodied in a Computer that works or doesn't) as opposed to the facts of history or the construction of an english sentence, but in their own way those things are just as falsifyable as the computer, it's just not as easily recognized.

I don't have a low opinion of you, it takes quite a lot to admit that you have these sorts of problems, so many of us don't. But I do find it disturbing that you have (aparently) a low opinion of yourself.

I never said it would be easy to change, never once implied that I find it easy to do everything/anything the first time. I'm not that smart or talented, but your response is telling... All I read was "Oh yeah, well you think you're so smart you go ahead and do it". That is the response of someone who has already, on some level, given up. I might be right out to lunch with that assessment but if I'm not then you have to decide what you are going to do about it.

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Aside from the fact that I'm 265 pounds, (well lost about 8 pounds over last couple weeks). I have started getting up and going to the gym at 430 in the morning.. Doing my best to set a real schedule and stick to it...

Just wanted to say that this is really good. If you haven't, I would check out the Paleo or Primal diet (just google it). I started out about where you were in February, 260 lbs, and without exercising really at all lost 40 pounds in ~4 months, and am now at about 205-210 (with a bit of exercise incorporated). I always thought I was going to be fat forever, but you don't have to. And it doesn't have to be a super-hard struggle either (I had no problem dropping the first 30 pounds or so, and while its gotten harder to keep losing weight, it isn't too bad). The most important point about all of the stuff you talk about is to always keep in mind why you are doing what you are doing-- you're waking up early and going to the gym to be healthy and be able to do all sorts of stuff (as well as mood benefits that come along for the ride); you're talking to teachers and asking for help when you need it so you can learn and get a job as a computer programmer, etc. It is a lot easier to follow through with one's goals and plans if you know why you're doing what you're doing, and don't treat it as a duty or to try to make yourself do it through sheer force of will. That way always leads to failure (no one's will is that strong!).

Good luck on your endeavors.

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You are correct, what I wrote was harsh... and it was supposed to be.

I am always one for honesty and don't really begrudge hearing it.

I understand the difference between a physically verifiable right or wrong (as embodied in a Computer that works or doesn't) as opposed to the facts of history or the construction of an english sentence, but in their own way those things are just as falsifyable as the computer, it's just not as easily recognized.

My point with the compiler is that even if a program doesn't work, I have an idea of how close I am, where I need to go and what I need to do. It makes it that much easier to understand the concepts.

I don't have a low opinion of you, it takes quite a lot to admit that you have these sorts of problems, so many of us don't. But I do find it disturbing that you have (aparently) a low opinion of yourself.

I am honest with myself. My opinion of myself fluctuates pretty regularly.. It actually picked up when I got back in school this semester, but it has been dropping off as I progressively do worse. I schedule more time to study each day, I sit down and try to get work done, but now even the classes I love I am losing ground in fast.

I never said it would be easy to change, never once implied that I find it easy to do everything/anything the first time. I'm not that smart or talented, but your response is telling... All I read was "Oh yeah, well you think you're so smart you go ahead and do it". That is the response of someone who has already, on some level, given up. I might be right out to lunch with that assessment but if I'm not then you have to decide what you are going to do about it.

There in lies part of the problem. I have worked to change my sleep habits, I've worked to improve my diet, and I've done whatever I could this semester to really change it around.. and I'm already overloaded, overwhelmed and my concentration is falling fast.

On top of that, it is irrelevant that I got back in and how well I do this semester, I can tell from the implications and hounding, I am not going to have another semester paid for by my parents.

So, unfortunately I have little choice but to hope that after this semester I can find a decent job without a degree.

I hadn't by a long shot given up once I actually got back in school. I really did give it my best effort and I am going to try my best to turn it around this semester still.. even after the way I bombed my first test in two classes. I am communicating with fellow students more than ever trying to get help, I am making every effort I can, and I don't think it will be enough.

Edited by Snow_Fox

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