Saturday, November 22, 2008

Fear of the Future

Ben has shared some things with me lately. I seldom, if ever, get really personal on this blog...I don't want it to come back to haunt him or me.

Maybe it is a teen thing, but this omnipresent thing called "the future" scares him. He is afraid he is unemployable. He has always had this dream to be an inventor since the first grade...and it's the only way out he can see. A regular 9 to 5 is just not his way.

I only survived employment with the help of anti-depressants. It wasn't really that I was depressed, but that I was enormously sensitive to criticism, and took it all straight to heart. The anti-depressants served as a "buffer zone" between me and the world. I would equate it with an intense shyness, and an intense fear of failure. I see some of the same shyness/fear of failure in Ben.

He was on ritalin to help him get through school without being in an enclosed special ed classroom. I KNEW they went much slower, and something told me he was very bright. It also helped him control his outbursts, gave him a buffer between his reactive feelings and the world, much like my anti-depressants. (I wasn't medicated through school, there never was a need in the "old days". I was a little off kilter, but had many friends, some of whom I still have. I was thought to be very bright...but "not living up to my potential". The same has been said of Ben.}

Well, what I need to know is, how can I help him to have faith in himself? Do any of you use drugs as a buffer? (I am thinking about having him see if he has more faith in himself with the addition of ritalin, like I use anti-depressants. I think they kept me out of a lot of trouble I would have caused for myself without them.)

It's not as though he doesn't have good role models. His 5th grade teacher was different, probably ADHD, and loved him into success and a stress free year. She believed in him like NOBODY's business, like nobody before or since. For 3 years, we were totally blessed to have a psychiatrist who was ADHD himself, and who never went into any psycho-babble, he just encouraged Ben and told him he was "the hardest worker he knew." We (both of us!)got out of his sessions uplifted. No blame, no "better way" by someone who "knew better"....Just encouragement! We loved them both, and Ben at one time said he would like to be a psychologist like "Dr. Luke" to help other kids like him. He was that good! Granny had trouble in school, and has always believed in Ben. Dad was a "late talker", and sees a lot of himself in Ben. So do I.

I know you all are extremely busy...but if you have any good advice, please leave a comment if you can share it with the world, or email me via the hub ring (jrbwalk).

God bless...Rose


abfh said...

My father always felt the same way. He has been self-employed most of his life, in various career fields. Sometimes his efforts didn't work out, and he ended up unemployed or in a 9 to 5 job for a while until things got better. He developed a new product 30 years ago that became popular, and he has been successfully selling it ever since.

Ben needs to know that it often takes time to find one's niche in the world; that being unemployed (which happens to many people at one time or another) is not the same as being unemployable; and that when one door closes, another door opens.

Best wishes,


r.b. said...

Thank you ABFH...that is beautiful!

Club 166 said...

To build on what ABFH said, I think a lot of anxiety with employment (especially in your first few "real" adult jobs) is that you feel like you have to succeed, or else you're a failure.

I've worked in a few different perfectly good fields, done well enough in them, and then moved on to something else, because they weren't the "best fit" for me.

I think once one lets go of the notion that one must succeed and be happy in a particular job, it gets easier to see if it's a good job for you or not.


mommy~dearest said...

Medicated mama here. I love my Lexapro.

r.b. said...

I lived most my life in misery. I thought taking an anti-depressant was admitting I was crazy. Turns out, most my family is on anti-depressants, and it was their opinion that mattered most. Many, many people take them.

r.b. said...

Thanks for your comments. Ben got the BRIGHTEST look in his eye after reading them to him. He wasn't upset at all that I'd "spilled my guts".

Thank you!!!!!

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