Divorced and starting over

I've been divorced for almost 3 years now and I'm still struggling. I was married for 15 years and although there were serious problems in the marriage, it was a huge shock. I live in the USA by the way, so maybe I don't even belong here. Anyway, the ex just left the divorce papers on the couch and left and didn't come back till the next afternoon. We had a huge fight, yelling at each other and he left with my daughter and didn't come back. I was so devastated and emotionally and physically exhausted from crying, plus I felt really bad because I'd yelled at my daughter, all I wanted to do was get some rest. I took my usual nighttime meds, a sleeping pill and a muscle relaxer plus I took one extra (which one I don't know) and went up to bed. That's the last thing I remember till I woke up in the hospital. I have no memory of what happened in between. I only know what people have told me.

I was being treated for attempted suicide. Apparently, my neighbor had to call for an ambulance to take me to the hospital. When I woke up, I was in a living nightmare. There was no family at my bedside, just hospital staff keeping an eye on me. I thought it was rather strange that there were no familiar faces there like my husband or daughter or other members. I waited and waited for someone to show up, but no one did. I was totally alone and I didn't know what had happened to me or how I got there. I was so scared and confused. And I didn't have my glasses, so I couldn't see anything. That made it even more terrifying for me. As I started to feel better, I knew there was something terribly wrong. I thought my family should have been there by now; my mom, brother and sister. But then I started to realize that my husband had never called anyone and he never came back to the hospital after the emergency room. He had chosen to leave me all alone. I finally called my best friend and she was shocked when I told her what had happened. I asked her to get a hold of my neighbor so that she could get some stuff from my husband, including my address book so she could call my mom. He just left a bag outside on the back deck for her. I had to admit myself into a recovery center. I had no medical insurance because my husband had cancelled what little I had through his work at the end of the year.

My neighbor did call my mom and told her what had happened and she and my sister and brother-in-law made plans to come to where I was. (We lived in different states) I had to stay in the recovery center until they came for me and it was like being in prison, locked up and all. It was horrible and terrifying. The family didn't get there until 3-4 days later and when arriving back at my home, I found out that my husband had called his attorney and had asked the judge for an order to have me barred from my own home because I was a danger to my daughter, but then he had it removed. I couldn't believe it. My mom and sister stayed for 2 weeks and then left, leaving me alone with a man who was willing to just let me die and be deposited on the streets. I tried to find an attorney who would help me, someone, but because I didn't have control of the money I couldn't afford one. My family told me to let my husband take care of it, because he would do the right thing. Well, he didn't. He knew I was still recovering and he took advantage of that and manipulated and lied to get just what he wanted. And he wanted me out of the house. I literally feared for my life while in that house waiting for the divorce to be final. He made it so uncomfortable for me to be there. So in the end, I wound up losing everything; my home, most of my possessions, my daughter (he has full custody of her) and nearly my life.

I had no where to go, so I had to move back in with my mom. I brought very little, the clothes I needed, the books I wanted the most, my cross stitching stuff and a few pieces of furniture. Most of it is stored in a small shed in the backyard. The ex did bring me and left me the truck. I found out a bit later from a neighbor that the minute he returned to the house, he moved in his mistress and he's been living with her ever since and there is nothing I can do to get my daughter out of that situation. She is verbally abusive to my daughter and the ex does nothing about it. So, for the past 3 years I've been living with my 85 year old mother who treats me like I'm 5 and the bedroom I'm in is very small and cramped. I tried to get on disability because of my depression and the fact that I have Graves Disease which seriously affects my eyes (my glasses are extremely thick) but I was denied. I was in an accident 3 months after moving in with my mom and my truck was totaled. So I have nothing to drive. I haven't worked in 17 years; I was a homemaker when married. I don't know what to do; I'm terrified of looking for a job; the market has changed since I worked. I can't get a job without a car and I can't buy a car without having a job. I have to use my mom's car but a lot of times we have conflicting schedules and it's just not working anymore. Because I didn't have any medical insurance, I couldn't get any mental health therapy and I got stuck with all the bills from the hospital and recovery center and the doctors because the ex didn't want to pay them. It's just been in the last year that I qualified for Medicaid and I was able to get the help I needed. I'm doing all the right things: I'm in individual therapy, but only once a month and I'm in a couple of therapy groups twice a week and they are helping. I exercise and take care of myself. I try to eat properly, I do aromatherapy, I have a close relationship with God, but the depression still takes hold of me and I feel like I'm not moving forward. I'm stuck in this house with my mom 90% of the time and it's driving me crazy. I would like to be in a loving relationship with someone, but I have severe trust and abandonment issues. I'm 58, in decent shape physically and I've been told I'm pretty, but I'm very shy and have a hard time getting close to people. I don't want to live the rest of my life alone, but I don't know if I can ever trust anyone again and I'm just so frustrated and depressed and lonely.

I'm sorry this has been so long and this isn't even half of the story. Maybe I'll finish the rest at a later time. Thanks all for listening. I appreciate it very much.

12 Replies

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  • Oh your in such a hard place you need to look at the positives and not the negatives. Maybe I can help send me a private message.

  • That may not be an appropriate response for someone you do not know? Without saying what you might be able to offer her and why she should message you I feel concerned that you may be selling some particular service?

  • You are in a really big mess.. Considering what you're going through, and the seemingly no way out.. I'm afraid but the only option i see is to call at the Women Empowerment Programmes and portray your husband as a real abusive criminal.. I know it sounds evil, but then he hasnt been noble much with you.. U can seek security for your daughter.. You are in quite a mess to get a proper job right now, so i would suggest you should try manual trivial jobs.. This is not going to be easy, but you need to get a hold on yourself and start somewhere.. Dont think about getting into any love relationship right now.. Ull end up getting urself into a bigger mess.. U will have to be strategic and smart right now if u really wish to enhance your life.. And i think u should appreciate the fact that your mum is still supporting you.. Also, maybe after all the mess and legal procedures, u may choose to move to a smaller state.. where the living costs arent so high.. And heyy, dont seek solace in those depression pills.. They'll kill you before your decided time.. I believe you have already witnessed once the consequences of succumbing to such weaknesses and follies.. Be a strong and independent woman.. Believe you can do it, cuz u have only your wits and courage you can rely on

  • Hi.

    I have also been through a divorce in the last few years, and I too know what it feels like to be stuck and not able to move on. I do not have all the same issues that you have, but I relate to the trust issues, and how helpless you felt. When someone in a marriage wants to end it there is very little one can do to stop it, and fighting it only makes it harder. I look back and see that when I resisted change I made it worse. I wish I had been less upset about it all, but I cannot see how I could have not felt what I felt.

    Anyway, looking forwards, as women in our 50's, out of work and lacking skills to compete with the rest of the world for limited jobs, what can we say that is positive about our situations? One thing I have learned about children is that whatever their parents try to force on them, they often know more than we think, and when they grow up they make their own choices. So hopefully you will be reunited with your child one day. In the meantime take advantage of the fact your husband has the responsibility of taking care of her, and use the time for something else. Keep sending cards and letters telling her you love her, but try not to get into any negativity about her step mum as it won't help.

    Your lack of trust may feel debilitating, but maybe it is stopping you from jumping into a relationship at the wrong time. It is important to recover from such a traumatic divorce first. One day you might look back and appreciate the time you had with your Mum, and be happy you did not get involved with the wrong guy when you were vulnerable. Maybe the right guy is out there, just waiting for the right time.

    And what is wrong with being a single woman when so many are trapped in unloving marriages out of fear of being alone. You do not have to make the decision to leave, it was made for you. Now you are free to be who you want to be.

    I hope things get better for you on all fronts, and I hope you can see some positives in your situation as it is now.

  • Actually, given what I have learned in the past few weeks, I wan to amend this answer I gave about the benefits of staying with your Mum. If your birth family was emotionally abusive to you, then going back into that environment will be challenging. They will work on you to resubmit to their view on life, and maybe your siblings will exploit the situation so that they can continue to avoid being involved in your Mother's life. Ok, you made a bad choice last time, not by marrying someone else who was also abusive but for staying with him until he chose to end things, but you did get out alive. I think the advice you have been given on seeking help and support from people who know of these matters, is great.

    In the meantime, remember, you are not the young girl you were last time you lived with your Mother. You have learned a lot, and your views are worth listening to. You do not have to respond to your families opinions in the same way you used to. You might have been through a difficult time recently, but that does not make you a failure, or weak, or unable to think for yourself. Your siblings have used avoidance as a method of dealing with your family, and no doubt are invested in trying to make you feel weak, in order to continue their status quo, but you do not have to internalise thier comments. Your mother may be feeling lonely, and insecure, and trying to keep you around using tried and tested methods of control. However, as an adult, you can decide whether you wish to stay, out of compassion, or leave because you need to be somewhere else for your own sake. Just keep a cool head, and don't regress if at all possible.

    If you do meet another guy, and it turns out he is not treating you well, then just leave him quickly. The only mistake you can make is to not do all you can in the meantime to learn about relationships, and about what is, and is not, acceptable behaviour.

  • Not selling I have a insight into het problems I've been through the same but don't want to talk abou my issues in public

  • Hi

    I am sorry you have had such a difficult time with the way your relationship has ended and all the surrounding circumstances. It must have been very hard for you, but you have shown determination in getting yourself into therapy and focussing upon ensuring your health is taken care of - I admire your strength and resilience!

    You are not in an easy situation as I am sure you know. I don't know anything about services and provision in the US so can't be of any help in that area of your life, but in terms of trust it is not surprising that you are fearful of trusting again. Your trust has been seriously undermined, your husband treated you very poorly and it will take time and new experiences before you can begin to trust another man.

    However for the moment my main concern is for your daughter. You do not say her age, but if she is still quite young the experience of losing you will have been very difficult for her. It must have been confusing for her to see her father treat you so badly then bring another woman into the house so soon afterwards. Are you in contact with her? It is important that she knows you still exist and are alright, also that you still love and care about her - perhaps you can write to her to ensure she knows that? You do not say whether you fear for her safety, but if you do then it will be important to seek legal advice and perhaps discuss with the childrens' services who can check things out. She needs protection, you are relatively safe at the moment having managed to extricate yourself from the clutches of the man, she is not so lucky.

    Assuming she is not at risk then your next priority needs to be to think about how you are going to make a new life for yourself. You say your mother treats you like a child, I can imagine how easily that has become the pattern, but for now she is allowing you to return to her home and giving you a safe place so it is important to hold that in mind as some parents would not have been willing to do that. Right now you are attending therapy and that will help you to establish new relationships, also to begin to think about how you became involved with the kind of man you did, what led you to chose a relationship with him and not with a more caring man who would love you. You do not mention your father who is probably no longer alive, nor what kind of relationship you had with him but perhaps your choice was based upon your relationship with him, I do not know.

    In terms of moving away from your mother's home and establishing yourself in your own home that will be difficult and I can't really advise you much at all. You may be able to talk with other women in the therapy groups about ways and means of finding somewhere to live, also about the kind of work you might be able to find, if any. There may also be voluntary agencies who help women who have been the victim of domestic violence and they may be able to advise you despite the time that has passed since you escaped! You might also think about re-training as it is never too late to take on further studies if that is realistic financially.

    Sorry not to have been more help, I feel for you, having left an unsatisfying marriage myself at a similar age to you.

    Good luck and keep using the site for support.

    Suex

  • Hi Rubyrose, you so belong on here. You really have come through so so much but what a blessing you can be to others on here having gone through all this and still standing!! You can't possible fix it all very quickly. But I know that God has a plan for you and will work things through. He is the only one your needing to get close to in a relationship and can change anything for you including the situation your daughter is in. Can you look up to tube Steven Furlick....be brave and whatever whatever. You will trust again but your just not in that place right now. Can you find a good church where people can be honest with you. I wish you lived here in Glasgow, Scotland. I would be able to help you more. Who know maybe one day God will bring you here. Think of Job in the bible and what he suffered!! Look what God brought him through and gave back to him.. Honestly get on your knees talk with him more and more, get stronger in knowing he is carrying you through. He can get you out of all of this. I feel for your daughter and as there is not much you can do at the moment, that also will change and your daughter and you will be close again. God knows your pain and wants to help. Get out there and get a job, God will be with you every step and never let you down. Hold onto his love for you that he adores you as you are and hold onto his word...For I know the plans I have for you he said, plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Man can't offer that to anyone, turn to him more and more honestly you will be amazed how he can change things. I really can't say it enough. He loves you, he believes in you and he says you don't owe him anything, just come as you are. You don't need to do anything for Jesus cause he already has done it for us all. Matt Chandler... keep getting up on you tube x x

  • I have just read through all your comments and I truly appreciate your support. It's so good to know I'm not alone. I am getting a lot of support from the ladies group and the grief and loss group, too. I just wish I could have better support from my family. Their response is "Just get over it and move on" like nothing ever happened. They are tired of hearing how I'm feeling, so I just don't say anything at all to them. I feel like I can't even trust my own family, sometimes. I do journal to let out my feelings and frustration and in grief and loss we are writing letters to those who have hurt us and who we have lost. I feel like I'm doing everything that I can right now to get better, but maybe it's not enough.

    I am staying very close to God and I know He loves me and cares for me and He will get me through this. My mom keeps trying to force me to go to church with her, but I just don't feel comfortable there. I want to find my own church, but it's hard when you don't have your own car and you can come and go as you please. I have been struggling my whole life to be my own person and make my own decisions, but I feel like I've been stopped at every turn by overly protective parents, and I think that has caused a lot of damage mentally and emotionally. I do love my mom, but she has no idea what I'm going through and she has no concept of giving people privacy and personal space. I'm with her all the time and I'm a very private person and need my space. I know she thinks I spend too much time alone, but I actually prefer it. I have things to keep me busy, so I'm not really bored.

    All the legal stuff with the divorce is done now, so there's nothing more to worry about now, except for my daughter. The ex and his girlfriend and my daughter moved back here a year ago after his mom passed away and they are living in her house. I thought I would get to see my daughter a lot more (she's 14), maybe every other weekend, but that has not been the case, He seems to think that her schooling and after school activities are more important that for her to see her mom. He is very controlling about when she gets to phone me or see me, it's always at his prompting not mine. I feel so bad for my daughter; she has ADHD and I know the divorce has had a huge impact on her. He has told her that I abandoned her and didn't want her (which isn't true). He has just continued to lie to her about me because he just wants to make himself look like the better parent. My daughter needs therapy because I can see she's dealing with a lot of stuff. She's depressed and has tried to harm herself and he is really not getting her the help that she needs. He only takes her to the therapist when she's acting out, but not on a regular basis. When I do see her, I can see how stressed out she is from being in that house with her dad and girlfriend, so I try really hard to make her stay as stress free as possible. We spend time together and watch movies and I don't constantly yell at her. Yes, I do fear for her safety in that house. The girlfriend has a very hot temper and likes to yell and kick and throw things and they both yell at my daughter all the time and say hurtful things to her. I'm just waiting for the day when I hear that she has commited suicide, gotten pregnant or ran away. I know I need to seek out some help in that area, but because I don't have custody of her, I don't know that it would do much good. The ex would just lie about everything and twist it all around. He's a master at that.

    It is just me and my mom in the house. My dad passed away 7 years ago of bone cancer and there's really not any other family around except cousins and I don't see them very often. My brother and sister live in different states and they don't come to visit very often, because they are so busy with their own lives and they don't have time. They do call once a week and talk to my mom, but I hardly ever get to talk to them myself because my mom is always there and she pretty much dominates the conversation. I do love my family, but they just don't fully understand what I've been through, so trying to explain things to them is really frustrating. I've just given up trying and instead journal or share with my groups.

    I know this is really long again, but I just want to share something else. My dad was a perfectionist and he ruled the house and my mom just went along with whatever he said. His word was gospel and you never talked back to him or disagreed with him. Don't get me wrong; he was a good man and a good provider for his family, but he was unavailable emotionally and I was afraid of him. He was not physically abusive, but I think there was emotional and mental abuse. He was always saying things that hurt people, especially my mom and me and he never told you that you did a good job and that he was proud of you or that he loved you. And the disapproving looks he would give when you didn't measure up to his standards were devastating. I never felt like I was good enough or did anything good enough to suit him. And because I lived with my parents even up into adulthood I was exposed to this every day for years. I lived with them more than when I lived on my own or when I was married. That's a long time to hear those things. The effects are so destructive.

    Thank you all for responding and just listening. I appreciate it so very much.

  • Hi Ruby Rose,

    I'm 50, living in the US, and divorced for 7 years. My ex also dumped me for a much younger mistress. However, he also abandoned our kids - didn't have any contact with them for 6 months after his surprise exit. So I got to deal with their emotional wreckage as well. I got 3 hours notice he was moving out, "...and by the way, I told the kids yesterday." He also pulled a lot of other assorted nastiness, which I won't go into because I get depressed when I think about it.

    I haven't financially recovered either, but I'm in a stable living situation. I also have major trust issues. I haven't dated, and don't plan to. My reasoning is that a good man (and they're rare!) wouldn't deserve the distrust I'd give him, and I don't want the other kind of man anywhere near me. My strong suggestion is to stay single. There are not a lot of unattached men out there, and if they are single, there's a reason. The majority of single guys I've met are either fresh out of prison, living with their moms, celebrating x months of sobriety (after a lifetime spent in some drug-induced stupor), and/or looking for someone (anyone) to mooch off of. I find that I don't need or want a man around: I have a cat, a body pillow to snuggle at night, and a lot of women friends to go do things with. In fact, tomorrow a friend and I are going to the symphony - well, actually to the symphony rehearsal in the afternoon, which is free. Being single is actually pretty wonderful, and so, so, so peaceful!

    Ruby, you sound like someone who's just been emotionally battered, and I'm so sorry because you don't deserve that because no one does. Having your mom treat you like a 5-year old is just another form of abuse. Have you considered getting into a women's shelter? We have one in our town, and it's wonderful. You get counseling 3X per week (some individual, some group), and they help you look for a job and get into your own apartment. You learn that you are strong and capable, and I think that's a message that you really need to hear - about a million times until it sinks in. Our shelter also offers free legal aid. I would love to see you in a program like that where they help you with everything, because your situation is pretty overwhelming - and it's like a trap - like you said, you can't get a job without a car, can't get a car without a job. I don't know if you can get into a women's shelter - maybe exaggerate your situation a little? But I think it could be helpful.

    Also, what's your custody agreement like? Courts hardly ever award 100% custody. In fact, I got 100% custody of my kids - my ex didn't want them - but the software they used to calculate support payments, etc, didn't allow you to put 100%, so we had to enter 99%. You should have some custody - every other weekend or something like that? Whatever you have, you need to fight for. Your ex cannot legally deny you access to your daughter during the time you have custody, and you need to make sure you get every minute you're entitled to, for her sake as well as yours.

    Your mom was abused, you were abused, and now your daughter is being abused. What's her life going to be like? For her sake, you need to learn to fight back, so she can see a different way of living. I can tell from what you write that this is a completely foreign concept to you, and you probably don't even know where or how to start. But you've tried being passive and taking whatever is dished out to you, and trusting that you will be taken care of, and it seems like that hasn't worked so well. So something needs to change if you want your situation to change.

    Four ways I can think of to figure out how to stand up for yourself better:

    1. Work with a counselor

    2. Watch how other (successful) people do it - make note of what they say, and how they respond when the other person argues back.

    3. Ask people directly (this takes some courage, but most people would be flattered to be asked, and will probably enjoy talking at length about it) - "How did you get your way in a particular dispute". "What were you thinking when the other person disagreed with you?" "How did you win?"

    4. The women's shelter might give you a concentrated dose of ideas 1..3.

    I hope things get better for you, and I'll say a prayer for you tonight.

    -K

  • Hi Kris,

    I really appreciate you writing and laying it on the line. I needed to hear it. I know I need to do more and stand up for myself and my daughter, especially with the situation she's in. I feel so bad for her and I don't want anything to happen to her.

    Would a women's shelter help me even though I have a place to live? I've always thought you had to be destitute to get any kind of help like that. Maybe I'm wrong, but I'll check it out.

    The custody agreement was pretty flexible; both parents are to get together and discuss visitation times and holidays to benefit the needs and age of the child. The ex seems to think that because he has legal custody and is supporting my daughter, he has the right to make all the decisions concerning her health care, her mental health, when I can have visitation, when I can talk to her on the phone and which holidays I get to see her. When I ask to be included in decisions, he tells me it's none of my business because he has custody and he can do whatever he wants. I also strongly believe that the girlfriend influences him and tells him what to do. He denies it, but I know better. Because I didn't have an attorney and he had fired his through an e-mail, we went through a mediator who the ex knew(which put everything in his favor) and the judge accepted it. My family never offered to help me, they just left me to deal with everything on my own. All they could say was, "Well, we weren't there, we don't know what happened, so we can't really do anything. This will make you stronger dealing with it on your own." I was manipulated by everyone and by my own family and that really makes me angry. What happened to families supporting each other?

    The women's group I'm in teaches DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) which is learning to think and express yourself in positive ways instead of negative. It's helping me a lot, but I know I have a long way to go.

    I know I've been mentally and emotionally abused all my life by my parents, especially my dad. For being Christian parents, I have never understood that kind of behavior. My older brother and younger sister never had to put up with it, because they got married young and left to start their own families. They also have more outgoing personalities. Me, being more shy and introverted; I took the brunt of it for 30 some years. How do you get over something like that? My mom, brother and sister have said when I've brought it up, "Well, that's just how he was." Isn't that just sweeping it under the rug and ignoring it?

    I know I need to get out and get a job so I can get out of this house, but I am absolutely terrified. I'm not good with people and in all honesty, I've hated every job I've had because I wasn't doing something that I really loved. But I've also been told all my life that I can't make a living doing what I love to do.

    I love cross stitching and making pretty things and designing patterns, I love aromatherapy and making body creams, soaps and lip balms and I used to love writing fiction, but I've been shot down every time. I do have a shop on Etsy though and I've got pictures, sachets, gift tags, cards, magnets and patterns for sale. I haven't made a lot of money; not nearly enough to support myself, but it's something I really enjoy doing.

    I just feel so lost. Thanks for listening and again thanks for the advice.

  • Hi Rubyrose,

    People who have been abused often have difficulties with boundaries. There's kind of a line between what you're supposed to do and what the other person is supposed to do, and if other people have crossed that line enough times, you don't ever learn where that line is supposed to be. You end up feeling lost and confused. For example, if a girl sees her mom being hit by her dad when they fight, and then gets hit by her boyfriend, she doesn't really know what "too far" means. Is it ok if he hits me a little? With his palm and not a closed fist? If it goes to far, what is an appropriate response (having never seen one)? (b.t.w, I feel like I have excellent boundaries in this particular area - I never hit back, I call the police, press charges, and get him out of my life asap. My dad never hit my mom, I expect not to get hit, and I deserve not to get hit, and anyone who tries to cross THAT line is going to be as sorry as I can make him.) That's an example of a boundary.

    For you, it seems like there's some fuzziness in what "support" means between you and your family. It's like there's a mismatch in what you expect them to do vs. what they expect to do for you. And as a result, you're not happy and feeling lost, and I suspect they're frustrated with you. This is something that a good counselor can help you work out. My wish for you is that you could find someone to sit down and talk about this with.

    I'll try and point out a few places where I think boundaries have been crossed in your life, but it's difficult online, and I might not be 100% correct because it's just too hard to get enough detail with only typing.

    1. Your family should not have advised you to trust your ex to do the right thing and to leave it all up to him. The implied message to you is that you're completely incompetent to know what's best and to negotiate for yourself. That was definitely not supportive of you, and they crossed the line, and it's perfectly reasonable that you feel hurt about that.

    2. You should not have expected your family to be involved in your divorce agreement. (I'm taking this from when you said " they just left me to deal with everything on my own. All they could say was, "Well, we weren't there, we don't know what happened, so we can't really do anything.") In my opinion, you crossed a line in this respect. It was your marriage and your relationship, and your responsibility to negotiate the divorce. The support you should expect from your family is for them to tell you, "We love you and will always love you, and your ex is a jerk to dump a wonderful person like you." They should give you a shoulder to cry on, but you should not expect them to intervene or be any part of any negotiations with your ex.

    I think it would really be worthwhile to spend some time asking yourself, "If I lived in a 'normal' family, what should they do for me and what should I do for myself?" Talk to friends about it, and a counselor if you can, and try to work out where the line is. And be open to having that boundary line not where you expect - I think your boundaries are a little skewed because of your past abuse.

    Other topics:

    Re: a women's shelter. I can support you by suggesting a possible solution (the shelter), and by cheering for you as you investigate it and make a decision. However, it's your responsibility to look for one, call them up, and see what the requirements are to get in. It's also your responsibility to check out what services they offer and see if they would meet your needs.

    Re: a job. You sound like someone who would be perfect to work in a craft shop like JoAnn or Michaels. Or at a quilt shop or a gift shop like a Hallmark, or maybe at one of those kitchen stores. With the things you enjoy doing, you would have a lot of credibility in selling crafting supplies to customers, or possibly teaching in-store workshops. You might work a couple different jobs, and keep the Etsy thing going as well. Note: I support you by tossing out a couple of suggestions based on the limited things you've told me about yourself. Please note they are SUGGESTIONS, not DIRECTIONS. It's your responsibility to decide if any of these would work for you, and to do whatever you need to do to apply for these jobs. If you don't follow up on any of these ideas or if they wouldn't work for you, I will still think you're a nice, worthwhile person, because that's how I support you.

    In rereading this, I'm not sure if I came across as nice as I mean to. It's hard when it's just text. Please know that I mean what I say in the nicest way possible, and if I were talking to you it would be delivered with a smile and a big, warm hug.

    -K

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