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AIBU?

I don't know what to do with my life

78 replies

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 16:32

I'm from the UK but live in another country, I'm 43, I have a DH and a DD. I don't speak the language very well so haven't had a proper job for a long time. I've done some online, freelance stuff but nothing particularly fulfilling.

I've recently been through treatment for an illness but should be ok now and I am desperate to do something with my life. I'm not leaving the country or my family, it's just not an option. I've had a look at potentially setting up as a VA but to be honest the amount of work involved is overwhelming.

I dream of doing a little admin job, I'm not a business strategist, I'm not a professional, I don't have lots of words and I'm not great at selling myself (can you tell?? 😅). The country I'm in is not very sympathetic to people who don't speak the language (I've been here a long time, it's not going to happen) so it's holding me back in getting any kind of job here.

So online is where it's at but what?! Should I retrain? If so, in what? I've done graphic design before and marketing but neither particularly set me on fire.

At the moment all I do is scroll all day or get panicky and start looking for jobs all over but never hear anything back. Financially we're ok and I don't need to work, I only need to work for my sanity and to feel like my life has purpose and meaning.

I'm deeply unhappy but having a job would change everything. Has anyone else been in this position? What did you do?

OP posts:
BarbieDangerous · 10/02/2024 16:34

I haven’t been in this situation myself but I’m sure someone with first hand experience will come along soon. I’m guessing you’ve tried learning the language but haven’t been too successful? It sounds like that would make a big difference in your day to day life

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 16:38

BarbieDangerous · 10/02/2024 16:34

I haven’t been in this situation myself but I’m sure someone with first hand experience will come along soon. I’m guessing you’ve tried learning the language but haven’t been too successful? It sounds like that would make a big difference in your day to day life

I have, many times over the years, I just can't get it. I can't 'hear' what people are saying. So I can start off ok but if it becomes complicated then I lose the conversation completely and look stupid. Or I pretend I can understand them. It's just too hard and I'm exhausted from trying. Some people just don't have the ability!

OP posts:
rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:14

Anyone? 😩

OP posts:
xyz111 · 10/02/2024 17:16

I would start again with the language lessons. It'll open so many more doors for you.

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:20

xyz111 · 10/02/2024 17:16

I would start again with the language lessons. It'll open so many more doors for you.

It's not going to happen, I need other options.

OP posts:
RM2013 · 10/02/2024 17:24

Do DH and DD speak the language of the country you’re living in? I understand that not everyone finds learning languages easy but as a PP has said it would open up so many more avenues for you.

Just wondering if your DD or DH speak the language could they maybe help you by speaking it more at home so that you don’t feel so much under pressure as with people you don’t know well?

what are your interests? What sort of work have you done in the past?

sorry I don’t have any personal experience

coxesorangepippin · 10/02/2024 17:26

I totally sympathise with the language thing.

I live somewhere where French is the first language and it's a struggle for me too.

Could you teach English in schools?

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:27

RM2013 · 10/02/2024 17:24

Do DH and DD speak the language of the country you’re living in? I understand that not everyone finds learning languages easy but as a PP has said it would open up so many more avenues for you.

Just wondering if your DD or DH speak the language could they maybe help you by speaking it more at home so that you don’t feel so much under pressure as with people you don’t know well?

what are your interests? What sort of work have you done in the past?

sorry I don’t have any personal experience

They only speak the language to each other but speak English to me. My DD hates it when I speak in the other language to her 🤣

My DH used to come home from work and just speak the language to me but I got so depressed because I was on my own at home all day (before DD) then he'd come home and I couldn't even have a conversation with him properly so he soon stopped.

I've mainly done graphic design but other people are much more talented than me so it's a hard area to be in.

OP posts:
coxesorangepippin · 10/02/2024 17:27

Or let's face it, you could move 😲

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:29

coxesorangepippin · 10/02/2024 17:27

Or let's face it, you could move 😲

DH wouldn't earn nearly as much in the UK as he does in the country we live in and he doesn't really want to move

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letsbepositive2024 · 10/02/2024 17:30

Could you volunteer in a helping capacity to keep you busy, better engaged, make you feel needed with a purpose then be in a better position to think about the bigger ambition.

I'm not sure you're in the right frame of mind to make the leap into knowing what big changes to make

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:32

coxesorangepippin · 10/02/2024 17:26

I totally sympathise with the language thing.

I live somewhere where French is the first language and it's a struggle for me too.

Could you teach English in schools?

Wouldn't I need a teacher qualification for that?

OP posts:
Jessforless · 10/02/2024 17:32

It seems like moving really needs to be discussed. How can you stay trapped in a country where you can’t speak the language? Seems really unfair.

ownedbymydog · 10/02/2024 17:32

Learning a new language as an adult is unpleasant at the beginning. Really, really hard. Often embarrassing. Definitely frustrating. But if you’re ok financially, why not look at it as your job? Do an immersive, go shopping with tutors. Offer English language lessons in return. 6 hours every day.

May take a while, but who cares?! It will give you an extra skill to get a ‘real’ job and do wonders for your confidence.

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:33

letsbepositive2024 · 10/02/2024 17:30

Could you volunteer in a helping capacity to keep you busy, better engaged, make you feel needed with a purpose then be in a better position to think about the bigger ambition.

I'm not sure you're in the right frame of mind to make the leap into knowing what big changes to make

I do volunteer work somewhere, a few hours a day, twice a week, supposedly to help with the language but I've been there over a year and I still can't hear/understand them most of the time 😬 I forgot to mention that in the OP 🤦🏻‍♀️

OP posts:
Mustardfan · 10/02/2024 17:34

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 16:38

I have, many times over the years, I just can't get it. I can't 'hear' what people are saying. So I can start off ok but if it becomes complicated then I lose the conversation completely and look stupid. Or I pretend I can understand them. It's just too hard and I'm exhausted from trying. Some people just don't have the ability!

I don’t think you want to hear people saying, this, but I’m going to say it anyway. I agree with the other poster that it would surely help you with your life in this country if you persisted with the language. You described losing the conversation, well of course, that is unfortunately going to happen. However if you continued with something like one lesson a week and 1/2 hour personal study 5 days a week, you would get some improvement, it would take a few years. This would surely help you in many situations as the years go by?

Also, do you exercise regularly? I think it’s essential for someone who doesn’t work, as it’s really easy for our mood to drop if we don’t have social contact through work, and aerobic exercise is fantastic for our mood.

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:37

Mustardfan · 10/02/2024 17:34

I don’t think you want to hear people saying, this, but I’m going to say it anyway. I agree with the other poster that it would surely help you with your life in this country if you persisted with the language. You described losing the conversation, well of course, that is unfortunately going to happen. However if you continued with something like one lesson a week and 1/2 hour personal study 5 days a week, you would get some improvement, it would take a few years. This would surely help you in many situations as the years go by?

Also, do you exercise regularly? I think it’s essential for someone who doesn’t work, as it’s really easy for our mood to drop if we don’t have social contact through work, and aerobic exercise is fantastic for our mood.

I did go to the gym before I got ill, my plan is to get back to it in a couple of weeks.

I just can't do the language thing, I can live here quite happily speaking English, I just can't work here. There has to be another option.

OP posts:
Kittylala · 10/02/2024 17:37

Can no one offer constructive advice on here? Learning the language isn't answering her question so stop nitpicking.

So you want to do something with your life, how about blogging? You won't make a lot of money first off but it will give you a purpose and keep you busy. I too live in another country and I've been messing about with blogging and social media. I'm enjoying it.

Goodluck

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:41

Kittylala · 10/02/2024 17:37

Can no one offer constructive advice on here? Learning the language isn't answering her question so stop nitpicking.

So you want to do something with your life, how about blogging? You won't make a lot of money first off but it will give you a purpose and keep you busy. I too live in another country and I've been messing about with blogging and social media. I'm enjoying it.

Goodluck

Thank you! It's so frustrating, it's like no one believes that I just can't speak it.

I did start a blog when I first moved here but my DH is very private and doesn't appreciate me talking about things on social media 😬 I quite enjoy TikTok but not being able to talk about family made it a bit more difficult. Thanks for the suggestion 😊

Before anyone says, he's the most wonderful man, literally the man of my dreams and would do almost anything to make me happy (not convinced moving would make me happy anyway).

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DecafOatMilkCappucino · 10/02/2024 17:42

Hi op, I was in a similar situation but 20 years ago before there were so many online jobs available. I sympathise with you as its incredibly isolating.

What about coding? Code first girls run free online courses to teach you the basics, then there's codeacademy or thousands of YouTube videos.

I used to write copy for a website called constant content. They pay peanuts but its a good way to get some copywriting practice.

There is also, people per hour, upwork and anything for a fiver, where you can do copywriting, graphic design, website building or even voice-over work.

There used to be a long running thread called 'earn £10 a day' or something similar on here that had loads of ideas for online work including surveys and the like. Perhaps someone else can link to it.

parietal · 10/02/2024 17:46

Can you tutor English In another capacity, not necessarily in a school?

Can you design and build websites using your graphic design skills? You might need to take a course first?

Can you work as an online PA? There are agencies that organise that.

DepartureLounge · 10/02/2024 17:47

Just want to pick up what you said about not being able to 'hear' what people are saying when you try to learn the language, which leapt out at me. I have this difficulty too, and for me it's a processing deficit linked to the fact that I'm autistic. I'm actually quite good at picking up languages but there's a significant difference between my ability to read, write and speak, and my ability to understand what others are saying to me. I just thought I'd flag that up as a possibility so that if it might apply to you, OP, you can stop beating yourself up.

WASZPy · 10/02/2024 17:49

Is there an international English medium school where you could get a job as a TA?

rainbowhairchalk · 10/02/2024 17:50

DepartureLounge · 10/02/2024 17:47

Just want to pick up what you said about not being able to 'hear' what people are saying when you try to learn the language, which leapt out at me. I have this difficulty too, and for me it's a processing deficit linked to the fact that I'm autistic. I'm actually quite good at picking up languages but there's a significant difference between my ability to read, write and speak, and my ability to understand what others are saying to me. I just thought I'd flag that up as a possibility so that if it might apply to you, OP, you can stop beating yourself up.

I don't think I'm autistic but there's definitely an auditory processing problem I would say

OP posts:
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