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Is it really just a lifestyle adjustment or is it more?

Posted by on May. 24, 2013 at 6:35 PM
  • 6 Replies

I spent the first 23 years of my life living in NY.  I knew that life was about what you achieved and that your college and career choices defined you. That's just the mindset we all had. Well college never worked well for me and it just got more difficult after becoming a mom. I was 23 with a 2 and 3 year old and long story short, I got married and moved... to WV. I also was pregnant which now he is 7 months and I have a step son. I spent my last year in NY obtaining and utilizing a CNA license. I finally felt proud of myself because aside form having kids, it was the only thing I had accomplished in life. The thing is, everyone made me feel like crap because it was not a respected job. And so I kept struggling trying to go to and stay in college (which I still keep failing at).

Since moving to WV, no one I have met has cared that I am a CNA or that I don't have more than a high school education. I've even met quite a few people who don't see a point in going to college because it just creates debt for getting a degree that most people can't find a job with anyway. It's almost like everyone just lives like, you just have kids, settle down eventually and work to provide for your family and that's life. Personally, I am so less stressed just working and not worrying about college. I like having the money to provide and also give my kids a childhood and letting them join sports and go out and do things. I have the time and I don't have homework to worry about or feel guilty because I don't have the time to devote to my family.

But I still feel the guilt and worthlessness of not attending and graduating college. I have a good job. But not a degree and because of all of it, I feel like I am nothing.

Is this normal?

Does anyone else ever feel like this?

Is it really just because I live somewhere where the philosophy on life is different and I jsut haven't adjusted, or is it just something screwed up in my head?


by on May. 24, 2013 at 6:35 PM
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by on May. 24, 2013 at 6:40 PM
If u are proud of the work u do, who cares what others say. I didn't go to college until 21. I graduated as a medical assistant. I've bean doing my pre reqs for nursing and my grades suck. I've. Decided to take a break cause the stress cost me to lose 15 lbs.
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by on May. 24, 2013 at 6:46 PM
I lived in NYC from ages 10 to 23 and I knew many people that didn't think going to college was or is important. Now I live upstate and the most important thing to kids here is joining the military, any branch of it.

You worked hard to be a CNA don't put yourself down, it was a really great accomplishment. College isn't for everyone
by on May. 24, 2013 at 9:01 PM
Sadly, it's normal.

I moved from Chicago to NC and its a completely different world here...
by on May. 24, 2013 at 10:14 PM
U am a CNA also it is hard work and should be much more respected than it is. I am starting the RN program next semester and I'm really excited. I had it in my mind that's what I was going to do since I was 12 and I will do anything to make it happen even tho I hate school and I am a single mo to a 2 year old. It's hard but I am dedicated and I know I can do it. Ur right that college isn't for everyone an u should be proud that u are working as a CNA especially if u put tour heart in it cuz those patients deserve to be treated well and so many CNAs don't do that!
by on May. 24, 2013 at 11:58 PM

I was always raised that higher education is something everyone should strive for. I got pregnant as a very young teenager, and ended up with a GED at 16, which now doesn't bother me, but at the time, just made me work harder at everything else, because I felt like a failure, I was the first person in my family to not graduate high school. I graduated with my associates in nursing at 19, and my bachelors of nursing at 20. I am very, very proud of my education, and I intend to continue for my doctorate when my children are out of the house. My husband is also college educated, he was raised the same way I was, that college is a must. That is how we are raising our children. I don't understand not wanting or not getting a college education, but if your life works for you, that is all that matters. No one else has to understand your choices, as long as you are happy and taking care of your family, that is all that matters. Growing up, and now, I live in an area where education is just the norm. Everyone in our circle of friends has a degree, we live in a fairly affluent neighborhood, all our neighbors are college educated. One of my husband's brothers lives in Missouri, a rural area, not the cities, and the atmosphere is like night and day. Education isn't considered important, the quality of life is poor, most people live pay check to pay check and are happy that way, and consider that normal. It all depends on how people are raised, and where you live. But again, if you are happy, that is all that matters. 

by on May. 25, 2013 at 12:18 AM
Hey, I got a degree 5 years ago and have done nothing with it as of yet. Where I grew up in NY (a low income village near Lake Ontario), very few people go farther than high school, so I was proud that I did. However, it doesn't mean much if you don't use it, lol. The mindset is pretty 50/50 in VA where I live now. I'm happy being a SAHM for now, and as long as you're happy with what you've done so far, don't put too much pressure on yourself. A degree does not guarantee a "better" job these days. Btw, where I live now probably has more medical career opportunities than everywhere else I've lived and the income bracket is silimar to the national average, so CNAs seem well respected, so it really does vary by area. If you grew up in or near NYC, I could see why people might not understand that it's a respectable career. Hell, most of my friends from high school are content with Dunkin Donuts or Mcdonald's jobs, and we're 27!
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