i've tried so hard to stay optimistic, but it's not really working. this isn't existential angst, so much as basic fear for my ability to survive. i've completely failed in my efforts to leave the nest. every step forward has taken me out on a limb, only to see it break.
we've been hearing a lot these days about how minimum wage isn't really enough to live on, but not so much about how (without a work history) collecting disability is about half as much as a single minimum wage job. way below the poverty line, it pays less per month than the cost of renting even a tiny apartment in most places, and while landlords aren't supposed to reject tenants for being disabled, they can certainly reject them for being too iffy on their ability to afford their rent.
there are some ways around that, but it can be tricky. we don't really live in a society that guarantees everyone food and shelter. no, that might be a disincentive to work, and we can't have that, not when there are so many extra jobs in need of being filled. so how many people end up homeless? considering the fear and loneliness of such a prospect, i wonder how many of the more than a hundred suicides per day we've got in this country, have something to do with that.
i feel like i've spent my entire adult life a small step away from homelessness, clinging to a social safety net that's full of holes. so why can't i figure anything else out? why can't i learn to take care of myself? i really don't know. i've never understood what's wrong with me. sometimes i think it's not as simple as a single condition, so much as the intersection of a variety of factors.
i know i had a number of strikes against me, and trying to be objective, i know that statistically the odds weren't in my favor. I grew up in an impoverished working single parent household. i had a medical condition that crippled any potential i had in childhood and adolescence for a healthy social life. compounded by being moved from one state to another when i was eleven, and then again when i was sixteen. i've always been the highly sensitive cerebral type, prone to anxiety and depression, even under better circumstances. i don't even know how to be friends with people anymore, let alone figure out how to navigate society.
All that's snowballed into what appears to be an utterly hopeless mess, yet somehow, i'm supposed to get it together anyhow, while struggling to survive on a few hundred dollars a month. I feel like I never really even had a chance.
i look at details like this, and think if i were looking at someone else, i'd think i'd be pretty understanding.. we're not supposed to look at ourselves that way, though. it looks like whining, it looks like giving up.. but it's a hell of a lot easier to embrace a positive attitude, when it's actually worked out better than this.
I've tried so hard to think of these things as building character, of making me stronger in some ways, but all of that seems like a lot of bullshit, when i'm almost forty and can't figure out how to get a roof over my head. as i get older, my life feels increasingly precarious. i don't know how much longer i'll be able to depend on others for this, and i have no idea where i can go from here.