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16 minutes ago, iWantRope said:

@gandolfication I tend to agree with JD more. A job should be the very last resort if all attempts at every avenue to qualify for disability has failed.

Thanks.  That feels/seems helpful.

The thing is, I want to work productively, just humanely.

I plan to apply for on line law professor jobs, and other legal, political writing,

but not practice, unless absolutely necessary, well, not even then probably.

I don't think I'd be any good not working at all. 

If anybody paid for good research and writing anymore on its own merits, and if I had any kind of runway or buffer, if, if, if....

well that would be good, because those are skills and things I know I can do.

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18 hours ago, gandolfication said:

Thanks.  That feels/seems helpful.

The thing is, I want to work productively, just humanely.

I plan to apply for on line law professor jobs, and other legal, political writing,

but not practice, unless absolutely necessary, well, not even then probably.

I don't think I'd be any good not working at all. 

If anybody paid for good research and writing anymore on its own merits, and if I had any kind of runway or buffer, if, if, if....

well that would be good, because those are skills and things I know I can do.

@gandolfication,

Good hunting!

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6 hours ago, Sophy said:

How are you coping? ((hug))

Thanks.

I've been feeling pretty hopeless. Was just reading the web site of choice to research methofs of ending life ranked by ease, speed, painlessness, and effectiveness.  It's mainly a coping mechanism right now (until hopefully eventually someday it's not).

There isn't much reason or hope I have to be able to find work that can support my family in 2019.  On its face, I know people hear that and think I'm just being pessimistic.  they have not made the efforts I have though to apply to interview ad nauseam, to be rejected again and again and again and again, and then slowly only to get paltry offers for things like sales that our life crushing and unsustainable anyway.  They do not understand the realities of modern job searching (particularly from the inside), especially with what my resume has become.  And I think mostly, they do not understand how I guess I am wired, which is for a different time, when quality of workmanship mattered more than simple speed and immediate profitability.

Anyway, I know I'm grousing.

Tomorrow is another day.  I wish it were not. I wish it were decided for me that it was over. But since it will come, perhaps I will wade once more into the breach and try again.  (I do hate the thought of 'ending on a miss'). When I used to play basketball and practice, you never wanted to end on a mess, see you would shoot until you made your last shot and then stop for the night.

One of the cognitively dissonsnt things I try to keep in mind is the fact that I do not have perspective to know when things might have been about to turn the corner.  It seems like they virtually never do in 10 or 11 years now, I know the stranger things have happened to other people.

I'd like to be here for my kids, I'd like to see if a few more psychedelic trips can have an impact of maybe getting 'unstuck' in some spiritual or psychological way, and I feel like I have some things still to write that I haven't gotten out.

Other than the fear of pain when trying to end one's life, I guess that's it.

What bothers me most about this latest time of being let go from a job (aside from the fact that I just sucks and hurts in every conceivable way), Is that I was completely engaged, working hard, diligently, and I did a great deal of very high quality work that helped a lot of clients.  I worked overnight probably 15 times to get things done and because I could concentrate on research and writing better.  (My research and writing were aspects of my work that were continuously praised, and valued).  If I get fired even after that level of effort, doing something that have the talent skills to do, what possible hope is there in this modern efficiency-goverened world?  I see none.

Edited by gandolfication
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Hello @gandolfication,

I would get a Work it Daily account if you have not already.  It really did help my with my job hunting, I also was networking my butt off at the time.  Are there any networking groups that you are a part of or can join in your field of work? 

I totally hear you on being let go.  I was fired from a job about 19 months ago (and was hired on the same day also as I had a firm waiting as they had asked me to call if the first job did not work out).  I was told a different story by everyone I asked.

It sounds like you were trying to accomplish your objectives, but a lot of places only care about results.  I worked one job were I ended up having unwinnable battles no matter what I tried and the boss and the best workers told me that they could not have done anything different and won. 

I would ask your former boss what you could have done differently and also ask for as much detail as (s)he can give you.  If you are not told why you failed you are doomed to keep making the same mistake. 

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@gandolfication I don't know why this thought just popped into my head, but is there any possibility that you may have been sabotaged at that place? That one paralegal woman (or whatever her title was) seemed to have it out for you.

I dunno. Just a paranoid thought from a paranoid old clod.

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2 minutes ago, JD4010 said:

@gandolfication I don't know why this thought just popped into my head, but is there any possibility that you may have been sabotaged at that place? That one paralegal woman (or whatever her title was) seemed to have it out for you.

I dunno. Just a paranoid thought from a paranoid old clod.

Could be.  Office politics can be pretty bad. 

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Oops, the internet posted my post again... Which is silly... But since it contained the question "how are you coping?" I guess that's a perrenial question worth repeating constantly.

I agree with JD that it is just as likely to have been office politics as anything else.

In my experience, whether you fit into a team often matters more than the quality of your work.

It's been really hard for me to learn that those soft skills (fitting into a team) are actually more important than the hard skills (doing good quality work).

My instinct is that that is back to front, but hey, what do I know?

Was it you that quoted the Zig Ziglar quote "You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want."  ?

I think that's pretty true in jobs/ companies...

People don't hire you to do the job *you* want to do... They hire you to help them achive what *they* want to achieve.

I dunno... it's hard.

I don't have any insightful advice to give.

I've struggled with jobs/ companies/ bosses so much throughout my life... My saving grace has been not having kids... Cos then I could just massively downsize my needs at anytime... I've come close to living out of my car or a tent a few times in my life... Which ended up feeling strangely liberating, actually... But obviously only an option if there aren't kids depending on you. I think the maths of life changes fundamentally when you have kids... When you're single, it's algebra... When you have kids, it's calculus. There's simply no comparison.

I still think that what you need to do re work is "think outside the box". It seems that your only two options are law (which may be unworkable) and sales (which is toxic).

But that can't be right. Literally can't be right. Just from a logic point of view.

There are so many people who are plumbers, supermarket managers, mechanics, nurses, who are somehow making enough money to at least survive and feed their kids.

IMO you must be stuck inside some kind of "thought box" and you need to think outside of it.

Maybe you'll have to get rid of you car(s). There are plenty of people that have to get by without a car.

Maybe you have to accept some super boring 9-5 job, but can do a Master's Degree in Teaching on the side, so that you can become a high school teacher in a few years.

Maybe you'll have to move somewhere rural where the rents are even cheaper.

Maybe you have to buy a caravan and put it in your mum's or dad's garden and live in that for a while and just use unemployment benefits to buy food.

I dunno... I know depression makes everything narrow down to these incredibly tight tunnels and avenues with "no other options"... but that's part of the illness.

Learning to think radically outside the box is a good (and IMO necessary) part of getting unstuck and breaking free from depression's claws.

Last weekend, my neighbour's house got hit by lightning and burned to the ground. They're currently camping out in their shed and are grateful to have electricity and running water in there.

This week, one of my best friends got diagnosed with cancer in an advanced stage, and she already had PTSD and depression to deal with, and a 12 year old kid, so cancer and chemo's the last thing she needs on her plate.

It's hard, for everyone.

And for some effing ridiculous reason, all of society pretends that it's not hard. Pretends that *their* lives are like some glossy magazine advert.

But it's not like that. Everyone hates their job, everyone's marriage is on the rocks, everyone's struggling to make mortgage payments, everyone's messing up their health, everyone sleeps poorly at night... it's the nature of the beast.

Yeah, sometimes it's sheer overwhelming, trying to cope with that... Sometimes we reach the limits of what we can cope with. Sometimes it feels like it's "just too much".

But real life is really, really f*cking hard... It just is... For everyone.

Sometimes I think our upbringing really sucked... We were taught that if we were good at school and went to university, then "everything would be fine" and we would live "happily ever after".

We were never taught to cope with adversity AT ALL.

They didn't even f*cking tell us how to spell adversity.

Adversity is something you saw on TV... It happened to poor people in poor countries, far far away.

It's like our parents created this sanitised version of our lives in which we would work hard and only experience successes.

And then, when we experienced adversity and failure, we had no idea what to do.

That just "wasn't meant to happen" in our lives.

Well guess what? Our parents F*CKING LIED.

They wanted the best for us, so they convinced themselves and they convinced us that that was what would happen.

They didn't give a f*cking shit about reality or that we would end up having to DEAL WITH REALITY.

They preferred their myth and they brainwashed us with it.

And now we're faced with reality, with zero reality-coping-skills and it f*cking hurts and we don't have a clue how to truly deal with adversity, how to overcome it, how to grow from it, how to move beyond it.

Don't let your parent's programming be the box that you are stuck in and that makes you feel like ending your life is the only other option.

This failure stuff... this messy stuff... this stressful stuff... this is real life. It doesn't get any realer than this.

It's hard for our generation to deal with the shame associated with failing at the myth that our parents set up for us.

But it is a myth.

And we have to outgrow it, like a snake shedding an old skin, that's become too tight and useless.

You're an able-bodied, smart, educated guy who is of sound mind (well, mostly, haha) living in a first world country.

There *are* options.

Go and find a factory job. Research which factories pay best and get a job there and then find a cheap appartment in the vicinity of the factory for you and your family.

Research factories in all of the states, so that you maximise your chances.

See if your wife can get a full time job at the same factory and then work alternating shifts, so there's always one of you to look after the kids.

Get bikes so you can bike to the factory, instead of needing to finance a car.

Yah, I know that stuff sucks, but it's real life.

The stuff our parents taught us is NOT real life and it was bound to fail.

It was bound to f*ck up, with the first real major obstacle that we hit.

Edited by Sophy
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Eh, thanks JD... I was a bit worried it sounds like a nagging parent... a bit too tough on the tough love thing... But eh... when suicide is an option, I'd rather throw tough love at it than stand by and not know what to do...

I WhatsApp-ed Rob earlier (bout an hour ago) after I read your post and he replied, so he's a) alive and b) he's in a fit state to work a cell phone.

Hope that info helps... Cos yeah, I was kinda worrying too.

Edited by Sophy
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Thanks guys for reaching out.  It's appreciated.

I'm trying to get back up.  I've worked out a couple times, spent time with the kids, and slept a lot.

My main goal is to file for unemployment, later today.  I have some other calls and applications on my list.

I don't expect to be.movimg overly fast yet.

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On 7/24/2019 at 11:29 AM, gandolfication said:

Thanks.  That feels/seems helpful.

The thing is, I want to work productively, just humanely.

I plan to apply for on line law professor jobs, and other legal, political writing,

but not practice, unless absolutely necessary, well, not even then probably.

I don't think I'd be any good not working at all.

Are you doing this to show your family/kids/whoever that "daddy strong mentally, not diagnosed with depression illness"?

Governments created disability for reason; because to be able to work productively means no adversity no matter how tough can affect you the slightest bit.

How many DF members, mental illness sufferers, can boast that? Unless you're those "I believe I have so much grit, I don't need therapy" types, at least consider disability as an option.

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On 7/30/2019 at 12:09 PM, iWantRope said:

Are you doing this to show your family/kids/whoever that "daddy strong mentally, not diagnosed with depression illness"?

Governments created disability for reason; because to be able to work productively means no adversity no matter how tough can affect you the slightest bit.

How many DF members, mental illness sufferers, can boast that? Unless you're those "I believe I have so much grit, I don't need therapy" types, at least consider disability as an option.

Nah, I'm not out to 'prove' anything to my family or anyone.  Yes, I do need to show myself and my family that I am able to work and do something productively, namely to maintain a job and income, and benefits, because these are the keys to providing a decent standard of living and life for them (and me).  I know we can talk around this all day,  and debate what a 'good life' really means, etc., but please, this is a simple truth - if you have a job you're able to do and pay your bills and perhaps save a little for security/stability/your kids, etc., your life is drastically better than if not.  And it goes far, far beyond just financial.

I'm not trying to be heroic.  I'm way past - a decade past - that.

It isn't that I don't 'need therapy," either.  Therapy is good.  It hasn't helped in any real, long term way I must say, but I enjoy it, avail myself and my wife (and even my oldest daughter of school counseling).  It's just pretty basic.  For various reasons, some understood, and some not, the inability to get and keep gainful employment has left my family and me in an ever-increasingly deteriorating condition, across most domains.

These real-world circumstances, along with related but distinct, real depression, this leaves me in a place wondering why not take the easiest way out and end suffering.  It is growing again to a point where it threatens to overwhelm the countervailing forces.  I know, with near-certain level of probability, that within 4 days of obtaining means, then 1-5 minutes of using them, I could permanently end my suffering, and that is threatening to drown out everything else.

None of this is directed at you, @iWantRope, I'm just struggling to put 1 foot in front of the next right now.  I'm in pain, with essentially every negative emotion there is on overload.

And there's s sense of disbelief.  I worked so very long and hard the past 10 months, producing a lot of very high caliber work, helped a lot of clients, conducted jury and bench trials.  And ALL of it ended it being fired, and accrues to no benefit to me or my family.  If I had more insurance and knew for sure the policy results, I would most certainly end my suffering now.  But I know it would devastate the only things in life I think are good - my 3 kids.  So I keep going for no other apparent reason. f**k this life.

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Wow, somehow I missed the part earlier about you losing your job. That is just so wrong - my heart goes out to you. I can relate to much of what you say - going on for family's sake and no other apparent reason. When you struggle so hard, even finding a foot hold - and then get kicked in the groin like this, it is just beyond brutal. I am always up for a chat Gando, so please do get in touch any time if you need someone to listen or just want to chat to take your mind off of things.

 

23 hours ago, gandolfication said:

And there's s sense of disbelief.  I worked so very long and hard the past 10 months, producing a lot of very high caliber work, helped a lot of clients, conducted jury and bench trials.  And ALL of it ended it being fired, and accrues to no benefit to me or my family.  If I had more insurance and knew for sure the policy results, I would most certainly end my suffering now.  But I know it would devastate the only things in life I think are good - my 3 kids.  So I keep going for no other apparent reason. f**k this life.

 

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1 hour ago, Tilted said:

Wow, somehow I missed the part earlier about you losing your job. That is just so wrong - my heart goes out to you. I can relate to much of what you say - going on for family's sake and no other apparent reason. When you struggle so hard, even finding a foot hold - and then get kicked in the groin like this, it is just beyond brutal. I am always up for a chat Gando, so please do get in touch any time if you need someone to listen or just want to chat to take your mind off of things.

 

 

Thanks @Tilted, might take you up on that some time.

Last 8-10 days have been rough, and money is obviously about out.

Today, though, I managed to make bunch of useful phone calls, researched legal research and writing service companies/rates, updated my resume and a bio to target this work for law firms on an independent contract basis.  Hard to tell if I can make that sustainable, but if I am doing work and getting paid for it, that's a big start and step in the right direction at least.  And I mostly like it.

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I admire your determination. Will you be able to count on your former employers for a good reference at least?

12 hours ago, gandolfication said:

Thanks @Tilted, might take you up on that some time.

Last 8-10 days have been rough, and money is obviously about out.

Today, though, I managed to make bunch of useful phone calls, researched legal research and writing service companies/rates, updated my resume and a bio to target this work for law firms on an independent contract basis.  Hard to tell if I can make that sustainable, but if I am doing work and getting paid for it, that's a big start and step in the right direction at least.  And I mostly like it.

 

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3 hours ago, Tilted said:

I admire your determination. Will you be able to count on your former employers for a good reference at least?

 

That's a good question, I don't know, I left a voicemail for my former boss yesterday to ask that very thing.  I asked specifically if he would be willing to be a good reference for the legal research and writing endeavor I am pursuing, which is a skill he perpetually complimented and praised me for.  His main counter could be that I was often slow and getting things done, by his and by litigation standards.

so anyway, I expect I'll find out next week if he has any willingness to be any kind of reference.

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For larger, complex litigation, my time frames were not unusual, and I never actually filed anything late, so it's an issue I don't know how important it will be to him.  I would not ask him to affirmatively misrepresent anything, just not to unnecessarily volunteer representations that were negative for the sake of being negative, the same way he would do at a minimum for any client.

If he's not willing, I'm sure that at least two other attorneys at the firm will be references (they've already offered), they just won't carry as much weight and will in some cases leave open an obvious question that I didn't leave on great terms with the boss.

My niche, to the extent I have one or that this exists, is to elevate writing. To make the otherwise banal, compelling.  I think of it a little bit like the old BASF ads.  their tag line used to be, "we don't make a lot of the products you use, we make a lot of products you use better."

In my case, I actually do produce original writing from scratch, so I do a little bit more than than just improving existing arguments.  Indeed, a substantial amount my contribution in the last 10 months was in brainstorming, imagining, developing, and then bringing into existing reality, new and sometimes novel arguments, then going out exhaustively researching law, finding and weaving together threads into a fabric of a new argument that had a realistic potential in swaying a judge and winning a case or issues that previously seemed unwinnable.

Almost any good legal writer can craft clear, persuasive legal, logical arguments for a proposed conclusion (although plenty do not).  What I want to think that I add that is different than most legal writers is a compelling emotional component that in many cases is, for lack of better term, literary and sometimes almost poetic in nature. (This must be done with subtle nuance, credibility, and evidential legal support).  I include "emotional"/moral/jurisprudential threads because it is authentically who I am and it would be hard for me NOT to do it, but also because somewhere along the way I accepted the belief that even the most determined rationalists among us (which is exactly what judges are supposed to be and think that they are), still actually make many decisions emotionally first and then go back and find rational reasons to support them.  Judges are specifically and exhaustively trained to avoid emotional decision-making; so it takes some real skill to infuse written arguments with the right elements of ethos, pathos and logos, to move them to desired decisions and outcomes.

If the "purpose" of life so to speak is seen as being as happy as one can be, then elevating the primacy of emotions actually makes sense even from a logical perspective.

That's kind of a high-faluting description I know, and it presposes that I'll still have already mastered the technical elements of legal writing, what's the most part I have.

All this I guess to say that while I certainly can and will turn out fairly straightforward legal briefs on almost any issue or area of law, the real competitive advantage that I plan to mark it and hopefully grow over time, is to help law firms get to the next level of excellence particularly on their most important or complex cases and/or the arguments that seem hopelessly lost. 

One of the things I really relive about litigation and law practice is that judges and legal readers are actually one of the remaining audiences that actually do delve into, learn from, and are persuaded by, serious, in depth professional writing and argumentation, even in long form.   Other than perhaps science and medicine, I am not sure if there are many other professions or audiences that have this aspect in our short tension span, sound bite world.

Two aphorisms from history come to my when I think of this.

The Marines fighting at Guadalcanal adopted a slogan, "the difficult we do immediately, the impossible takes a little longer." Many lawyers' and clients' cases are seemingly impossible, and they are impossible, until someone does them.

The other phrase, is a testament to the power of language, which I've just always felt an affinity for.  When Churchill died, president Kennedy gave a eulogy at a funeral service in the US commemorating his life.  He talked about Churchill's role in sustaining the British citizenry through the incredibly dark days of world war II.  And he said, "Churchill mobilized the English language and took it in the battle.". 

There's an age-old battle about whether a picture is worth a thousand words or vice versa.  It's kind of silly in one cents, like debating who the greatest basketball player of all time is, it's all relative dependent.  But we know from psychology and sociology, that essentially our thoughts are words and our words are thoughts.  Without language, we really do not have "thoughts," just inchoate feelings.  While I cannot imagine life without visual images (I suppose a person blind from birth perhaps can), it is even hotter for me to imagine life without language in words.  Single life without the word, 'love,' or without the words of our Constitution, our national Creed's, the words we use with our family, best friends, etc.  It is almost literally unthinkable.

So, to the extent that words undergird our understanding of everything, and Anna made us to action, the writers duty and opportunity Is two marshall them in such a way that the reader thinks, 'yes, that is just the way I would say it best, if I am to adopt this position.'. Ideally, and in quite a number of cases actually, the judge should be able to literally cut and paste either the entirety or large swaths of one of the litigant's briefs to use in their actual written decision and opinion of the law.

This is what I think of as what great legal writers do, after a fashion.  In my marketing materials I'm not nearly so grandiosis, but internally this is what I hope to be able to do more of, over time.  It motivates and propells me forward, across a lot of obstacles and difficulties, as something anything.and worthwhile.

There are few things that outlive us in any meaningful sense.  Our progeny is one.  Perhaps something we do, or say or write is another.

Ok.  Grandiose homage to language over.

Edited by gandolfication
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