Dealing with Stress/Have I failed at life?


All my life, I felt like the black sheep of the family, the underachiever, the odd one out. Believe me, when I'm finished telling you about my problem, you're probably going to think I'm the most pathetic person you ever heard from.

Here's a list of all my shortcomings:

I am the only person in my family who:

-Has never had a full-time job.
-Has never been in a relationship.
-Who never finished high school.
-Who doesn't own their own home.
-Who has been diagnosed with something labelled a "disability".
-Who lives on social assistance.
-Has no social life.
-Does not have a wide network of friends.

All my life I have been a very nice guy and all I have gotten in return from the world is contempt. It's as if I am not worthy of respect no matter what. In school, I was a total outcast, with no friends, and was always getting bullies. On the other hand my younger brother and sisters were popular and had friends.

Sixteen years ago I was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome and life became an even greater struggle for me because people started treating me like I was "different". Even today some people still won't leave me alone and get off my back about my ability to live independently. My younger brother - who spent much of his life making mine miserable - used to call me a handicapped kid, and dad agreed with him. In fact, dad has pretty much given up on me many years ago.

Speaking of which, dad is completely unsympathetic towards me. Dad never told any of his kids how proud he is of them. In fact, dad was hardly around, always working, even taking his supper downstairs to his office. He owns and runs a grocery store, we actually live above it. Dad pretty much ignored his family, yet over the course of the past eight years, he's been dedicated to trying to help some crazy young woman with "problems". He can't realize that she is simply taking advantage of him. He always goes on about how proud he is of her and how she is such a good worker (since he employs her in his store), yet at the same time he always goes on about how pathetic I am. It's as if he actually considers me his biggest disappointment in life. Dad clearly doesn't care at all if I am depressed, heck he doesn't even seem to care that I've been thinking of killing myself. Yet if "crazy Krista" says she's depressed (even though its all fake to play on his sympathies) he goes out of the way to try to help her. It's as if he actually considers her more of his family than all five of his kids. It's no wonder mom left him!

Six years ago I moved to the city, yet nothing has changed. I have lived in three apartments, I still cannot find a full-time job that I'm suited for or qualified for (but then again it's pretty much impossible to find a job when you have no high school diploma, no qualifications, or if you don't like being around people), and I still cannot find my first girlfriend. Then again, with all my shortcomings and failures, what chance do I have? Did I ever have a chance in life? I only have two friends and they both are often too busy to hang out with me.

I get the feeling that life had it out for me since day 1. My younger brother and three older sisters have it much better off than I do (heck my brother is getting married). Yet for me, life is a constant never-ending struggle and I have nothing to show for it. Even after all these years there is still no light at the end of the tunnel. I'm at that point where my attitude towards life is "who cares anymore?".

I'm seeing a counselor and am on antidepressant, yet nothing seems to work. I get the feeling that I am not meant to have any kind of future, or am not meant to even have a life. Nothing ever works out for me.

I took some personality quizzes online to see if I am a failure at life. One of the results say that we all get one chance at life and you screwed up! Another quiz which determines what I'll be in life said that I'll be a hobo.

Considering all this, have I failed at life?

Hi Dwayne,

Thanks for your question - and the comprehensive outline of your troubles.

You seem to have no trouble expressing yourself pretty eloquently.

I would say your question could be much better phrased, by asking how can I succeed in life.

The trouble with focusing on all the things we can't do, or haven't done, is that ends up being the only way we can think about life.  We can't see any other options.

You don't mention how old you are, or how long you have been trying to succeed.

My speciality is stress, not life orientation or Career focus.  However I will offer you some ideas which you may find helpful.

What might help is having a review of your skills, abilities and things that you like to do, or are passionate about.  With that in mind, find a copy of "What colour is your parachute?" - author Richard N. Bolles.  This will help you find your ideal area of focus for work and career.  Being fulfilled in a work environment often helps in other areas of your life.

If you still find you need more help, I would recommend you find a good hypnotherapist who can help you change your thinking to something more useful for your stage in life.

I hope this is helpful, if you need more help, just contact me again.

Warm regards,


Dealing with Stress

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


James Middleton


I am happy answering questions about handling stress and panic attacks, overwork and similar problems.


I am a practicing hypnotherapist of 22 years experience and a qualified Occupational Therapist in community mental health.

UK Journal of Association for Neurolinguistic Processing.

Dip Cot, Certificate in Hypnotherapy and Psychotherapy, Certificate in Co-counselling, Reiki 1, Reiki 2, and Reiki Masters. Practitioner of NLP

Awards and Honors
WARP Freefall Coach for the British Parachute Association.

Past/Present Clients
Ericksonian Hypnotherapy blog

©2017 All rights reserved.