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I've been living in Baltimore for about 2 years now, straight out of college. I hate my job and I'm headed more and more into depression every week. I fear that it's going deeper and deeper and I really feel the need to move away. I can't stand being here anymore and I've withdrawn from people I used to be around. Everything and the people are starting to irritate me.

I have been looking for a new job in a much larger city since January but have not gotten anything. I am starting to lose hope and I'm at the breaking point where I am really considering just quitting my job even without one lined up.

The only debt I have is from student loans and my car payment
roughly -30k all combined

should I suck it up or just do it?

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Being in Baltimore it is easy for you to take day trips to DC, Philly, or NYC via the Acela. Get out there and intervie... (more)

OmegaDeal (Jun. 23, 2010 @ 2:29a) |

Maybe they are just reflecting the same attitude you have about them.

michal1980 (Jun. 23, 2010 @ 6:55a) |

Travel, travel, travel. Then travel some more. If you can't/don't want to go far, take a few weeks off, go camping/hikin... (more)

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How much money do you have saved up? If you quit would you move or just stay put until you found a place? Why do you think it will be better elsewhere? Why a bigger city?

Cheapbastard-

I am sorry you are unhappy, I really get that from your post. Without knowing a lot about your history, plan,or situation, I can only pose a question: Are you sure moving is going to solve something? It might be that what you are feeling can be solved not by moving, but by exploring your life motivations, values, and principles more deeply. Good luck to you.

PS.

I also advise getting a nicer user ID. Be nice to yourself.

See a shrink.

I agree that a move is unlikely to really solve any of the problems you describe. And Baltimore certainly isn't a small town, even the biggest city is not going to be a whole lot different in most ways.

Suck it up. Welcome to adult life.

So quitting your job is the answer? What's that going to do? Wouldn't that give you more things to drop you further into depression?

Man up and get yourself a good bottle of hard alcohol.

You need to find something you like doing besides your full-time job, perhaps a part-time job.

Welcome to your quarter life crisis...

antidepressants are cheaper than moving...and it sounds like you need them. or maybe an attitude adjustment....you could join the Military!

Be reasonable. You have to feed yourself and pay your bills. Go get an anti-depressant, take on a new hobby, find some new friends that will take your mind off of negative things, and do your best to put up with the people you work with while you keep searching for your next job.

Keep in mind that you're going to encounter irritating people at every job you work in, so you have to learn to tolerate them to some degree. If it's inner demons that are making you feel and think this way, finding a new job in a new city won't fix those problems.

And please, don't drink thinking it will help you relax. Alcohol is a depressant and will only make you more unhappy if you are feeling depressed already.

screw the antidepressants they are just excuses. If you really committed to moving or getting another job treat a new job hunt as a job itself make sure you are updating the resume daily (based on the responses you receive) commit to making at least 5 phone calls to job posting/companies and 5 calls to friends/family/coworkers for new opportunities.

I was in your situation and I thought it would be relatively easy considering my experience and tons of calls received for my contacts and resume posting. I got stunned with the number of rejections/no call backs after interviews. Yes I was picky on the companies to approach but did not expect it to be that difficult. Companies have opening but they are also very very very picky on whom they want and being dull depressed shows on interviews.

go for daily walks eat healthy and keep mind focused their will be days where you feel really in a runt but keeping a routine helps in ensuring things are at progressing. Remember the call/email you make today is the one which is going to result in new opportunity in 2/3 weeks.

oh and watch your expenses
good luck

Perhaps you should seek help from a qualified mental health professional. They can advise you if the reason you are suffering is directly related to your current environment or if there are deeper issues that need to be resolved.

I can tell you having lived in several major cities (NYC, LA, and Boston), that the differences in day to day life are really not that great. If your psychotherapists suggests that moving may be right for you, perhaps your employer has offices elsewhere around the country. You can also seek help from your college being that you are a relatively new graduate.

In summary, a major move such as this should not be done on a whim and advice from professionals should be consulted. Hell, if you do move you probably won't have health coverage for awhile so might as while make sure you have a clean bill of health.

sometimes a change of pace is really needed. One simple thing you can do without quitting job, is to just move your place of residence. Just change apt complex or move to a new area.

if you feel depressed, pickup a hobby or do something that you always wanted to do. Just have a positive attitude.

Here's an idea.
You already sound like you don't feel that there is anything that you can change about yourself that would resolve your problems, so now you think that change a in scenery may help. I would suggest, first sit down in a comfortable place and write down what your family/friends/co-workers etc. can do to help you out.

a) Can your friends attend with you some sports event or hobby you'd like to see or participate in? Or get new friends who enjoy these things?
b) Can you ask your boss from extra work; or less work; casually train for another position in the company just to have the skill, but not for the job?
c) community college for extra knowledge, skills, acquire new acquaintances?
d) join a gym, or exercise more with a specific goal of adding muscles, losing weight, increasing distance running, etc?


If you are still thinking seriously about moving, can you take some time off and travel to some place for a week to see how the city feels?

Good luck,
Living in the wrong place, is just as bad as living in the wrong time!

ok first you have to decide if this is just
1)run of the mill 'my job sucks, bills suck, adult life sucks, everyone has a better job than me, I want to follow my dreams' etc
OR
2)true clinical depression (see http://www.mental-health-today.com/dep/dsm.htm for pure psychiatric diagnostic criteria)
OR
1+2

the part about withdrawing from those around you makes me concerned you are falling into #2 somewhat. The person that said antidepressants 'are just an excuse' needs to stop making stuff up before they open their mouths. DO make an effort to go out more, exercise, eat better, drink less, laugh at life, etc- if that doesn't work go see someone, especially before you just quit your job.

Depression is a continuum- there are tons of us who walk around 'depressed' about things but are really just pessimistic, others who really are really depressed, and the extreme end are people who are so depressed that they just lay in bed all day and can't get up. You and I and everyone else on this board falls in their somewhere, just a matter of where.

Don't quit. Take a vacation. Keep trying to find work then.

I've lived in a lot of places in my life and I can attest that each place was VERY different in terms of atmosphere, people, opportunities, lifestyle, etc.

If some people who have lived in different places say they are all the same, maybe they are the sorts of people who arrange their lives the same way, no matter where they live. [This is a common urge amongst Americans, who even when they live in Singapore or Malawi, make sure they have Oreos and baseball and 4th of July parties and walk-in closets and top-loading washing machines. (I'm not slamming that; I understand it completely.)]

Maybe 95% of people would tell you to take anti-depressants, make peace with being unhappy, limit your horizons, hunker down, try to see the good side of the bad situation, BUT NOT ME. I can't stand it when "well-meaning" people give me advice like that. It might work for them, but not me.

A lot of these just-reduce-your-expectations folks will look enviously at you during your 20th high school reunion and say they regret having given up their dreams to stay put in a boring job and boring town, and now they are old and paunchy, maybe ill, maybe divorced, and REALLY feel stuck.

I think that if your intuition is telling you to move, that you MUST move.

You are young, you are educated, you don't have the responsibilities of a partner/children. You are fortunate enough to live in a big country with many environments and lifestyles, and a proud tradition of relocation for personal happiness. Now is the time to explore the world (or at least the country) and figure out where you belong.

Also, Baltimore has a pretty bad reputation and dismal crime/economic statistics -- no wonder you aren't very happy there -- of course any place can be great if you like it, but you don't like it, so don't think that there is something wrong with you for not liking it, because there isn't.

The word "Baltimore" in the UK has become a byword for a horrible urban situation, because of the tv show The Wire I guess (I've never even seen the show myself), and they use that word with visiting Americans, like a code word, but I think most of the Americans don't know what the heck they are alluding to when they mutter "Baltimore".

However, you should NOT move suddenly, with no plans in place, unless you are absolutely desperate, which I don't think you are. A bit of planning and strategy will go far to making this transition easy for you and "understandable" on your resume to future employers.

Don't worry about withdrawing from your erstwhile friends -- yes, sometimes this is a lamentable sign of depression, but sometimes it's a sign that you are growing apart from them in a healthy way. Do try to keep a couple of people you can talk with and get together with once in a while, for your own sake, but don't worry about the rest of them, for now, because your objective with your free time is to plan how to move some place that you WANT to be living in.

In this economy, you need to be very careful about leaving a sure job for no job. I would not advise you to do that. Try to save as much money as possible. Use your energy in doing a great job in your present company, so that you can have a good reference from them, and use the rest of your energy in planning your eventual escape.

Here are some thoughts I will throw out:
a. Can you keep your job for the moment and move to a different area of Baltimore, or to the countryside, or even to a different city or state and commute to your job? At least as an intermediate step to provide you with some psychological relief right away.
b. Does your company have any way to transfer you anywhere else? In the past, at one place I worked, I was desperate to leave Boston (where I'd lived for 2 years and given it my best shot, but it was not the place for me), and I asked if the company would move me anywhere (as long as I didn't need to wear a burka), and I was prepared to go anywhere, even some dusty frightening outpost, but they transferred me to western Europe, which I was ecstatic about.
c. Do you know where you want to live? If not, spend some time working out what some possible places are. Use your vacation to drive or fly to these places to get a feeling about them. What we know of places from stereotypes and movies is often not at all what they end up being like, to live there.
d. How about your alumni network - contact people from your school who live where you want to move to, to ask for advice or whatnot.
e. Sometimes simply getting out of where you are is good enough. A few times in my life, just so I could move and experience something new, I took jobs that were sort of random, in far-flung places I'd never been and never even thought of before, and they were great adventures. You have to be a free spirit to do this, though, because your resume will look untraditional.
f. Typical jobs for college-educated folks who want an adventure are ski season jobs in New England, Canada, the Rockies, the Alps... summer season jobs in the Caribbean, Bermuda, Martha's Vineyard, etc.... but these may not be easy to come by and it's not the quickest route up any kind of career ladder, ha.
g. Can you apply to some educational program - a one-year master's, a night course, a language course, something that allows you to move to a new location with a little bit of structure to support you there, and that gives you a "reason" for moving, when you have to explain yourself in job interviews?
h. You could always apply to be a professional volunteer for a period of time, like in Teach for America or the Peace Corps, but those jobs are really hard to get (though some people do get them).


You might want to talk to a medical doctor or therapist about your depression and unhappiness. Please do that if you are feeling desperate, suicidal, or too unhappy to function.

However, this does go in your medical records and becomes a pre-existing condition for when you leave your job and don't keep your insurance, especially if you don't immediately get new insurance. This pre-existing condition stuff is hateful policy by the insurance companies, but it's something we always have to consider.

If you need to talk to someone, I think that you can call some anonymous phone lines for a little bit of emotional support from a trained stranger - I assume this is available where you live. I don't know the names of the typical US hotlines, but in the UK, one is called "the Samaritans". There probably is a suicide prevention hotline, and you may feel that you aren't unhappy enough to use it, but I remember when I volunteered at one and I hardly got one call per shift, so don't worry about calling such a hotline if you are feeling very down.

You also might be able to speak to a clergy-person (religious pastor type) in a confidential manner, no reporting on medical records. But many would have a natural, kind-hearted, conservative desire to help you adjust to your surroundings, rather than help you find surroundings that you can be happier in without changing yourself.


Take heart: You WILL be able to leave Baltimore, and you will be able to move somewhere else that you like better, and have a decent job there.

This can easily happen. Zillions of people do it all the time. You need some guts, some hard work, some luck -- but it's completely possible to do.

So if that's what you want to do, work out a way to do it. You need to move carefully, rationally, creatively and bravely in order to get from here to there.

duplicate

The real problem is not that you are depressed but the fact that the economy is depressed. Your best bet is to get some medical help (anti depressant), make some life changes (new hobbies) and stay at your present job until the economy becomes better and you can find a job in a city that you desire.

On the other hand, if your situation is so dire that if you stay at your present job you might, say, kill yourself, then I guess it is preferred to quite your job and accept the economic consequences. In that case maybe you are eligible for longterm disability compensation. Talk to a mental health professional and to your HR division.

Statistically speaking, imo, problems such as the one that you are describing are not caused by the choice of your job/city and therefore are not solved by changing your job/city. I also agree with others that you did not give us enough info.

NantucketSunrise said:
Also, Baltimore has a pretty bad reputation and dismal crime/economic statistics -- no wonder you aren't very happy there -- of course any place can be great if you like it, but you don't like it, so don't think that there is something wrong with you for not liking it, because there isn't.

The word "Baltimore" in the UK has become a byword for a horrible urban situation, because of the tv show The Wire I guess (I've never even seen the show myself), and they use that word with visiting Americans, like a code word, but I think most of the Americans don't know what the heck they are alluding to when they mutter "Baltimore".


Unless the OP is living in an abandoned East Baltimore rowhouse and selling rock, I sincerely doubt that the OP's life is anything like The Wire. Sure, there are parts of Baltimore that are awful, but that's pretty much true of any city. And while B-more hasn't been immune to the effects of the economy, there are places that are a lot worse - Baltimore has the advantage of being close to DC, the one place where spending is increasing, and being home to a lot of defense contractors, government agencies, Military bases, ect.

The OP's problems don't sound like problems with the city, they sound like problems with his life. Those problems aren't going to be fixed by moving, if anything they are going to be exacerbated.

It sounds to me as if you are very lonely at this stage in your life and you don't have much in the way of hobbies to help you relax.

I recommend adopting a dog that will be your friend and companion. There's nothing like taking care of another life that makes you more responsible and keeps things in perspective.

Awesome post NantucketSunrise. Lots of great advice.

If you quit you job, cant eat, cant pay your rent and end up homeless on the street, then you will really know depression. I know...I was there at your age. I didn't have a job, and was out of work for four years. I had to basically live off the women I dated during that time period. Luckily each worked at a different fast food place, so I was able to eat. At one point, I had to move in with a woman I couldn't stand. You at least have a job. So suck it up!!!

Now at almost twice your age, I have a good job, a beautiful wife, just had a son, and I'm happy. But had I not gone through what I did then, I would not be the man that I am today. In time you will find a job if you keep at it and keep a positive attitude. If there is some problem that you are running from, moving wont solve it. You will never be happy, until you are happy with yourself first.

Techrat

I like Nantucket Sunrise's post a lot. And I agree with her.

Get out and see the world while you can. There are a gazillion ways to earn a living and support yourself. There's no need to stay in a job that makes you miserable. Get out and find out what makes you happy.

Teach Native English in a foreign land. There is a a big demand for that in a large metropolis. In most cases, it is conversational English. Decent pay and an opportunity to learn a new language and cultures. Life is a journey, take it. I did it in Mexico City. I chatted and became friends with VP's and Presidents from Bacardi,Nestle,Grupo Modelo, Colgate etc. I graduated with a business degree in event planning and hotel mgn't. I got a job in a hotel at the front desk and .....well...let's just say I have been where you are before.

With the powerful contacts I had made teaching English, I was hired as a marketing manager for a very large professional music,audio and lighting company in El D.F.(Mexico City). I worked with Lenny Kravitz,Shakira,Pearl Jam,Moby and many famous Latino artists. That would have never happened here in the US. VIP parties for MTV LATAM,Fashion Shows etc... I did that for 5 years until I was ready for a change and I was missing Oklahoma.

Now I sell medical device and do good enough to where my wife can stay home and raise our child. Mexico City is amazing and learning Spanish can be a real asset. Check-out www.solutionsabroad.com I would recommend trying Beijing, China now. That is where the money is at. The US economy is headed south anyway. Good luck and use the GOOGLE. FYI..I didn't speak a lick of Spanish. In large cities you can get by...hell with Google translate on your mobile, it should never be a problem.

NantucketSunrise is dead on point.

MOVE!!! NOW!!! When you are single, no kids that is when you can leave. Any job will suffice.

Of course, you must do some soul searching - REAL soul searching determine why you are depressed.

Is it a chemical imbalance or something you have not resolved. You may need to develop more spiritually.

Having a series of low paid jobs, living in cheap dumps throughout Europe, all of these things are do-able and even cool when you are young.

I neven understand, but for the need for health insurance or paying off debt why someone would waste their youth on mundane "rat-race" jobs.

There are so many organizations - job corps , peace corps, etc. - that are begging for college educated kids to send all over the world as teachers, etc. The pay is minimal , yet what do you have to lose.

The wedding ring, house payments, rat-race jobs will all be here when you get back.

Make a plan of attack. Apply for everything. There are forums out there with millions of people in your exact situation.

MOVE TO AUSTIN!!!!

I would add to the group recommending a radical move to another country. If you're ever going to do it, now is the time for you. The older you get, the harder it is to do (though with the internet today, you won't feel as isolated as I did - early 90's). Also, don't worry about the sudden change on your resume from Baltimore to ... say Berlin for example. When I got back to the states from my years in Europe, I often had interviews where the person said they wanted to meet me just based on what all I had done, with the crazy moves overseas. It may not have gotten me a job, but the experience sure got me in the door for the interview, and often that is the biggest part of getting a job.

imacheapbastard said: I've been living in Baltimore for about 2 years now, straight out of college. I hate my job and I'm headed more and more into depression every week. I fear that it's going deeper and deeper and I really feel the need to move away. I can't stand being here anymore and I've withdrawn from people I used to be around. Everything and the people are starting to irritate me.

I have been looking for a new job in a much larger city since January but have not gotten anything. I am starting to lose hope and I'm at the breaking point where I am really considering just quitting my job even without one lined up.

The only debt I have is from student loans and my car payment
roughly -30k all combined

should I suck it up or just do it?


Consider going to visit your friendly, neighborhood US Army recruiter.
Nothing like a 0500 wake up call delivered via a garbage can kicked down the squad bay.

Army life will get you focused, and you won't have time to be depressed.

Yurgis

Do you have any savings, or family that will support you while you're unemployed? I would never ever ever recommend quitting a job until you have something lined up. That's an unemployment nono, and having a job gap does not look good on your resume. Imagine if you don't find anything, you'll be without supplemental income and push yourself further into debt. That to me would be worse than the situation you're in now. If you really want to make a move now, just to get out of the area, then I would start talking to recruiters, temp agencies (last resort), or do what others suggested with job opportunities that allow you to travel at the same time.

Move to AZ. Lot's of sun and dirt cheap housing...

Is your job the only reason you are not happy? Or is there something else? Try to tough it out as it is not always an option to move away everytime you have a problem.

But, if you hate your job, there is a support group called EVERYBODY, and they meet on Fridays at the bar.

I lived in Baltimore and went to school there. I was depressed most of the time and could not figure out why. Until I moved. Luckily I found something in Europe... and it changed things totally. Baltimore is a strange and harsh city. It has, literally, walls that separate the rich from the poor. The inner city is a mess with a lot of crime. No matter who you are, if you are not depressed about the situation in Baltimore you are just comfortably numb.

So, my advise,

1. Sell everything you own, car (TV/ipod) ( hope that's worth $2000)

2. Quit your job.

3. Take a three month trip to India or Nepal (ticket $1200, visa $70 and the $730 will last you very easily for 3 months), and spend the time in a monastery helping others.

3.5. If India/Nepal seems too daunting try California/Oregon/Montana/Wyoming. There are some monasteries around in MD/VI also. If you have skills, you can try going to Haiti/Africa and help. The world needs people with skills. The only reason you want your job is because you want your "things". But this is not making you happy, so what's the point?

4. Comeback to a good friend/family member who will unconditionally support you for a couple of months.

5. You will have changed, and you will find a job if you still desire one.

Hope, you don't turn to drugs (prescription or otherwise), religion (my idea concerns a spiritual service for others, not finding Jesus, Buddha, or Mostafa) or the Military. Because, they all are symptoms of the same problem in western society, in which you are caught up.
May you find peace.

YOu may hate your job but you have a job and don't even think about moving to Florida.
A call center announced it will be hiring 50 people at a big $8 per hour and they are expecting
over 1000 people to line up. That equals $16,640 per year!!!!

OP, the fact that you are depressed is GOOD not bad. Your mind/body is SCREAMING that something is WRONG, TERRIBLY WRONG. Listen to this voice and address it.

Don't drug, drink, eat, or use some other form of self-medication to address the symptoms.

Address the problem. This can be very difficult for us men to do.


If you have a college degree, but are unemployed or do some part time gig, and are single without kids in Madison, Chapel Hill, Boston (need a place to stay), or Austin, life can be a blast and actually far superior than one with a rat race job paying middle manager wages in Baltimore. Being spit out of a 4 year university does not mean you are ready to be a full fledged adult.

Life is not a linear ride. Its like marriage and kids, there is not one answer. Its your answer.

Most importantly, the OP needs to look INSIDE and be honest with himself about what ails him.

OP, Best of Luck. Look at all the love you got on this anonymous forum.

NantucketSunrise said:



Maybe 95% of people would tell you to take anti-depressants, make peace with being unhappy, limit your horizons, hunker down, try to see the good side of the bad situation, BUT NOT ME. I can't stand it when "well-meaning" people give me advice like that. It might work for them, but not me.

.


Deleted alot of bla bla bla.

What if it is depression? If you have a an infection caused by bactria wouldn't you take an anti-bacterial? Or if is viral an anti-viral? Just because you live in La-La land, does not mean that depression is not real. And while some people might be mis-diagnosed, or some choose to abuse them, doesn't mean that its not real.

OP - why do you apply to only Big Cities ? Is there something you left out ??
Check out the states with lowest unemployment (SD, ND ..etc), since you are free to move it will be easier there to get a job, but the city won't be BIG.
Perhaps you should consider, as others have mentioned moving to another country, try for a job in Bahammas, or Aruba, or Virgin Islands, or just do the English as Second Language thing, you don't need a teaching degree.

Lots of excellent advice here. Before you quit our job however, get a job first to where you want to relocate. It would be extremely hard to live in a strange place with no income. Good luck!

I was in the OP's shoes about 7 years ago. I got my MBA in early 21st century where the dot com tanked along w/ all the jobs. I got a crappy job and survived 2.5 years and then jumped ship to a better paying gig. I didn't like my first job, and didn't like my second job either. So I realized that money and co-workers weren't the reason. It was that I was unsatisfied with life.

I quit the job. Survived less than 2 weeks in law school. Got out. Was about to go to Medical School but the thought of spending 10 years in school again didn't really appealed to me.

Did a lot of soul searching. Broke up with the girlfriend (wasn't happy @ home either). Got a job in a new city in a different field. I've been moving every 2 years since and I enjoyed it a lot. I was in the East Coast and now in the West Coast. Let me tell you, different cities really do affect your happiness.

Professionally, I'm better off and pretty much can get any job that I want. Personally, I'm a lot healthier--lost about 40 lbs, can ride 200 miles a day on my bike, run marathons, swim, etc. I'm doing an ironman triathlon in October.

I understand the OP's pain. And all I can say is try to find a different job maybe in a different field. While you're doing that, take a look at yourself and try to understand who you are. It may take years but when you do, you'll never suffer this kind of depression and helplessness again.

And don't listen to all of these people that keep telling you to take the easy way out, i.e., anti-dep pills.

From the many near death experiences that I have had, I realized that life is short. Very short. To be unhappy and suffer is no way to live life. Plan for a change and do it. No regrets. Regrets won't change the past.

Skipping 30 Messages...
Travel, travel, travel. Then travel some more. If you can't/don't want to go far, take a few weeks off, go camping/hiking/exploring the wilderness. It will help you think straight and prioritize goals, values, etc. I spent 3 months backpacking through SE Asia last summer and it's really amazing to see how much good something like that can do.



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