I've destroyed my career
My life growing up was less than perfect but I think most people can probably say the same. My father was very emotionally abusive, my parents had me at 19 and 21 years old (far too young in my opinion), and neither parent did anything more than keep me from getting hit by passing cars and beat my butt for pissing them off, and teach me how to do housework and cooking. They were very strict and I wasn't allowed to date or go out with friends at all until I was almost 17. They weren't very social people, and they hated having company over. I'm not here to beat up my parents. I think they suffered from the same issues that cause me problems. If the cycle isn't broken, those issues are just passed along through the family until someone realizes them and decides to make a change. I don't fully understand the insecurities and anxiety that I picked up along the way. I don't know what caused them or how to change them.
I've been a radiologic technologist (xray tech) for 13 years. I was hired straight from school... actually started as a student tech during my 2nd year in school at my first xray job. I was a great tech and received *almost* nothing but praise. I got good evaluations and always impressed my peers with the technical quality of my work. Somehow, even straight from school, I was the tech others called on if they needed help with a difficult xray view. However, I had some issues getting along with my coworkers, due to immaturity on my part I'm sure. We did like eachother as far as personality, but I was the "fireball" that completely about 350 exams a month and always surpassed the 2nd highest by about 100, while the lowest numbers fell around 30-50 exams in a month. I had an attitude about that because it was unfair and on top of it, I was diagnosed with arthritis shortly after graduating, so I did all this running around on a foot that was so swollen and inflammed that it hardly fit in my shoe. I was in a lot of pain everyday for years.
I was at that job 5 years, and worked under 3 different directors in that time. The first one absolutely loved me and never reprimanded me for a thing. Perhaps I never actually did anything wrong during that time? I don't know. The 2nd appreciated my skill and told me on several occassions he wished he could just clone 5 more of me, but during his time as director things started falling apart in my home life, and as a result, my attitude grew worse at work. Having known me for years and even worked along side me as a tech before he was promoted, he let a lot slide and he went to bat for me much more than I appreciated at the time. I owe him.
At home, I'd moved back in with my parents after college until I got on my feet financially. I had a lot of debt from school, both in student loans and credit card debt (and yes it was ALL for necessities for school, gas, books, etc). My mother during this time was anorexic... 5'6" and 62lbs at her worst. My parents slept in seperate rooms, my dad was a truckdriver on the road for about 16hrs a day, and we all hated when we heard him drive up at night. My dad finally moved out and my parents got a legal seperation. Along with being anorexic, my mom was an alcoholic, depressed, and on several occassions tried to overdose and ended up spending a week each time in a mental hospital.
My siblings were 11 and 13 at the time. When my mom overdosed, I'd call an ambulance to come get her, and for the next week it was up to me to take care of the kids, deal with my father's harrassment, spend sleepless nights ignoring his calls while the kids cried and and stayed awake all night too. The emotional stress was too much for me. I was 23 years old, but I had no idea how to fix things nor how to handle the stress coming from every angle and the heartache of seeing my mom so sad and miserable that she was doing these things to herself. She also laid cigarettes on her arms and let them burn down so she has horrible scars on the insides of her forearms.
Back at work, I was on the brink of tears everyday from sleep deprivation and stress from home. I started running into problems at work with people complaining about my attitude.... coworkers, doctors, and sometimes patients. Usually, I *was* technically right in most cases, but had I known then what I know now, I would have handled things differently. Instead of displaying an attitude and defending myself, I should have just taken the issue to my supervisor everytime and been the one making a formal complaint rather than the one being complained about in every case. But I was immature and the only attitude I knew for those situations was the "nobody is going to talk to me that way" attitude. I said and did things back then that humiliate me to think back on now.
The 3rd supervisor came along, and within months of his hire, I was fired. I was not entirely innocent, but I made the mistake of calling him out for lying to me, and from that point on he took every single issue to an administrative level until he got the green light to get rid of me... and there were a few of those write ups that were complete BS, such as one patient complaint I was written up for and later found out I wasn't even the tech who had that patient.
I loved that job, and despite everything that happened and the wrong things I did, I know that is where I belonged. Being fired destroyed my confidence and esteem. At the time I was fired, my mom had lost the kids, and I'd gotten an appartment close to my job where my mom lived with me until she got a settlement from the divorce. Everyday when I'd come home, she'd be sitting there crying, or she'd be drunk on the phone fighting with some boyfriend, or she'd be overdosing... all of the same was still going on. One morning, she woke me up to ask me how to make herself vomit because she'd taken a bottle of welbutrin and regretted it. I jumped up and as I was grabbing clothes and shoes to take her to the ER, she had a siezure and fell head first onto my bedroom floor. So I called an ambulance again.
As far as work, I'd also been working prn at a second job on the weekends all along. I switched to working fulltime weekends at my 2nd job, so I never had much of a financial problem after being fired from my first job. The problem was all emotional. It was 2002 when I switched to fulltime weekends. I did 16 hrs every Sat-Sun and then worked an 8hr shift one day during the week.
My first primary xray job was at a level 4 trauma center. My 2nd job where I switched to weekends was at a small town hospital which was a dump. I hated it from day 1 when I started as prn. They called it "The Pinebox" which couldn't be more accurate. Horrible unethical things went on there. I'd say that place is where all the rejects end up after being fired from real hospitals, and now I was one of them. My boss had just lost his son in a car accident... well shortly after I switched to fulltime. Terrible, but as a boss he was already useless, and this only amplified his uselessness. His favorite thing to tell new employees was "I don't care what you do. You keep people out of my office and I'll stay out of yours." In other words, all he cared about is not having anyone make work for him. This was his attitude, but if anything happened, he'd throw us under the bus and didn't care what happened to us as long as he scathed by. He is such a liar with no moral compass, and I despised him.
But I stayed there. After losing my first job, every bit of the confidence I had in school and at my first job was destroyed. I was scared of dealing with surgeons, scared of going to the OR, and scared of being written up or fired everytime I went to work, but I felt too worthless and afraid to seek another "good" job, so I stayed at the dump, put on 80 lbs, remained weak and depressed, and let that jerk walk all over me while under paying me for all he expected of me. Despite everything, I was still "the bomb" technically, just with a messed up head.
I've witnessed a lot of things there that if administration or JCAHO and DHEC knew about would easily have my boss fired and cost the facility tons in fines.. maybe even lost accreditation. It never crossed my mind to use any of those things to stand up to my boss until November of 2009. I'd been there 12 years. Finally, I had enough of everyone on my shift being treated unfairly, and somehow he infuriated me enough that I "grew some." Perhaps I should thank him in that regard. We'll see.
I reported every violation I knew of currently taking place to JCAHO and DHEC, and crap hit the fan at work. An unlicensed tech lost her job, my boss was suspended, and the hospital had to reimburse every patient the unlicensed tech did over a few years of working without her license.
I'm sorry this is so long. I'm getting to my point now. 2 months after reporting those violations, I was fired. I'm not here for legal advice. I knew when I reported them that I was suppose to be protected by the whistle blower law. I have a lawyer, and I have a case, but these cases are NEVER easy, expected to be long and drawn out, and right now I'm having to wait for my damages to exceed the expected legal fees before my lawyer will proceed on a contingency basis.
Emotionally, as far as my confidence in my ability to perform my job, what happened there very abruptly cured me somehow.... or maybe it was just time combined with one more straw to break the camel's back and uproot me from the dump. My attitude isn't what it was at 23 yrs old. I'm not the same immature, unwise, and highly stressed kid that got fired in 2002 in my 20's. I am 35 now, have matured alot, and have learned over the years how to pick my battles for the most part. Much more laid back too. I do still have social anxiety, and sometimes this translates as me not caring in the eyes of my patients, because the problem is there are many times I don't know what to say to them and how to respond to some things. I don't know how to talk with strangers comfortably. My bedside manner suffers. I just get in, get done, and get out. I'm not rude. I'm just not chatty. Some people complain, usually the ones who are there to be petted and pampered. The really sick ones that only care about getting help like me because, again, technically I do a great job and with the least possible discomfort to the patient.... and I guess they look at that to see that I do care regardless of how chatty I am.
So now I'm single, living alone, unemployed, and the job market is horrible. My unemployment isn't approved yet, and even if it does get approved, the amount is laughable. I can't live off it.
Years ago when I was going through so much that I couldn't handle, I needed psychological help. I needed all kinds of help. It was an insult to me back then for someone to suggest I needed to see a therapist. I denied it, did the best I could to push it all down, and just went on trying to fix everything in my life and my family members' lives. Denying that I needed help to overcome my issues, in my eyes, has finally costed my career, and inevitably will cost my credit rating, apartment, and independence. I will soon have to move in with my mother, sleep on the couch, put my furniture and belongings in storage, and pray that someone hires me before my retirement runs out. How to I get my foot back in the door after being fired twice? I am honest on my apps and tell them what happened, but what director wants to hire a tech who reported her last director to JCAHO, regardless of being right or wrong? Maybe I'll win a lawsuit, maybe not, but it will still cost me a credit rating and so much hardship before I get there.
I'm just spinning my wheels now. I don't know what to do. If not for having grown up going to church and if not for my 12 yr old toy poodle that would starve himself to death in depression without me at this point, I would put myself out of misery. I never will because I'm scared there may be a hell after death, worse than the one I live in now... and I love my dog like I would my own kid. To me he is my baby and I couldn't abandon him like that.
People tell me I'm going to be okay, that I'm strong, and they can't wait to see me give that D-head what he deserves in court. Personally, I'm not so confident about winning the case. They know the laws and they went out of their way to build a case against me before firing me. It isn't going to be that easy eventhough everyone knows that in reality they did fire me in retaliation.
I'm sorry this is so long.
Although your story is heartbreaking it is also beautiful. You are a good writer. You express yourself well. You are well organized and you know how to make a point. I would recommend that you write your complete story in detail. Take every situation that was important to you and describe the surroundings, the people, how you felt and what you thought. Writing everything down will help you organize your thoughts and feelings and get in terms with the regrets. It may also make you a published author.
Wit and Itch is absolutely right! You do express yourself well and you have a hellava story - so go for it.
On the other hand, you are suffering from so many unattended to issues. There is much to sort out and put in perspective, not the least of which is your self-confidence. One thing that should be somewhat reassuring, however, is that you did the right thing regarding this clinic. You are saving so many people from being abused, ripped off and who knows what else. It won't be an easy journey, but it is a necessary one, and one that will probably make you stronger if you allow it to.
All the best to you and keep on writing! It is both cathartic and liberating.
Is there any way you can get back in touch with your two old bosses? the ones who liked you?
You could explain to them briefly what happened (without too many personal details) and tell them that since you worked for them, you have grown up, seen how your behavior at that time wasn't the correct one, and that you would appreciate it if the would keep an eye out for you for a new job.
Maybe that can bring you somewhere?
even if not, ask them for a letter of recommendation. Yes it is from plenty of years ago, but it is still better then nothing.
As well.. don't stop applying for jobs. Don't wait until there is an opening, but simply send an open solicitation to every company that could use your services.
Don't say in the letter if you were fired or not or why, but do let them know that you are more then willing to discuss the circumstances surrounding your last job in detail.
You said you destroyed your career... I just think you only lost a job.
In the past I also was in a job where I was harassed and finally fired because I did not align with corrupted practices. I felt horrible just like you.
After years passed I realized I did the right thing. Losing a job for doing the right thing shows your values, and ethics is attractive for some employers.
Go to Costa Rica, get a job at a call center.
I just wanted to say that since posting this thread and reading through some threads on this forum, I have enrolled to go back to college for a BSIT for software development. There are many wise people on this forum, and I have you to thank for making me feel motivated, hopeful, and willing to take a huge risk in order to find happiness in my career.
I like the name 'Broken" it brings the background coversation to the forfront to be seen acknowledged and dealth with. Like my friend who named himself "hateful" in reallife to deal with his agression out in the open. I thought that was cool.
Broken, I suggest you do "The Landmark Forum." I did it and it changed my life in 3 days. I freed myself from my past, from the past, in ways I would never have expected.
I feel for your situation... I dearly pray for your improvement. God loves you even though it's hard to understand what's he's doing at times OK :)
Very thorough post.
If you wrote a book in such a manner, I'd buy it.
Software Dev...that's very interesting...keep us updated.
I have had a dysfunctional family in my youth as well. I dealt with similar things but will admit that it wasn't as painful as this.
I also understand what you mean by saying that the family cycle needs to be broken and needs someone to do it. You made the choice as I have, future generations, even if they don't know you did this, will live happier for it.
Having gone through a dysfunctional family like this, I too had a cornucopia of issues and insecurities. I have found all of their roots in my childhood. You needn't look elsewhere.
What happens to us as children is that we absorb the behaviors of people around us to form our worldview and personalities. Seeing as you had dysfunctional parents (without you absorbing the bad habits; alchool, abusive attitudes, etc.) your mind and body found a way to absorb these behaviors with emotions instead of bad habits - clearly you knew that being anorexic and alcoholic would only make your hell worse. So how does a child become an insecure adult? By creating a personality from the other personalities that surround him. This is where your problems come from. You formed limiting beliefs because of the bad behaviors and interpretations your parents gave you. You reinforced them and conditioned them by absorbing them and repeating them over several years until they became normal reactions and habits. Realizing the depth of how this works will alleviate the majority of effort you would seem to need to get rid of these.
If you like, send me a PM, we can talk about this and I'd be glad to. I am 26 years old, and having gone through similar places, I have made it a priority for myself in the last couple of years to get to the bottom of my issues. I can pinpoint most of my insecurities and issues all the way back to my childhood. I still am working on myself and still have some anxieties but the majority of these problems are gone now, there was a catalyst that made me become a new person though - it was a program offered through Steve's affiliate programs, Morty Lefkoe. Look into it, he will eliminate the core limiting beliefs you formed in your childhood and beleive me when you are done, even just 1/5th of the program you will cry from the rush of happiness you will acquire through finally knowing that your absolutely fine. I am at 1/5 of the program and stopped, the change it made within me was so great and it feels like my mind was unlocked with a master key and I found happiness within it. Sounds cheesy but that is how it feels. Take the time you need to go through the program, the positive changes it makes within you are so great that you will need to take time off to give yourself time to make sense of it. You would be surprised what these beliefs do to your thought process, they basically take your ability to listen and apply reason. I find myself finding answer several times faster than before because of this program.
Nothing is stronger than a human being. Look at you; you went through hell and reached the lowest depths of your life and managed to pick yourself up!
Hope to hear from you.
Thanks for the reference.
My enthusiasm comes from having a life that defies explanation, that I neither deserve nor earned, but somehow I got free of my past and created myself to be someone who is happy and persures the things that are most important to them even when the circumstances reeeallyyy SUCK or say "go back". I got being unstoppable out of doing that three day and one evening program. :) Radical.
Sounds better than sex.
I can never disagree with this logic.
Did you know Steve linked to this thread from his blog? It wasn't flattering....although Steve said he wasn't trying to single the OP out, that's effectively what he did. :(
But I have an idea -- Broken, if you can write the details of your vision with as much clarity as what has already happened, you'll most likely experience a major turnaround in life.
Well if it helps, I poured myself out on this forum, and picked out all the negatives of my decisions a while back, and guess what? Things are much better now, and I am a lot happier :D For me it was that chance to just let it all out, whine and then let it go. So what works for one is not always going to work for the other.
I thought your story was really inspiring and brave. I think you will actually grow a lot because of it, maybe you can't see it right at this moment, but in time I think you will see it as a blessing in disguise :)
Im actually glad you write this here because now I can tell you that you are a talented writer and maybe you should become an author, maybe that can be a new career for you.
Maybe the book that you write won't be a happy one and maybe not one that Steve would chose to read, but many great books are both tragic and beautiful.
On the other hand I don't think broken is a good username for you, because you are not broken and identifying with that word probably won't be helpful
I absolutely loved Steve's last post. And, I must say that functionally, speaking, in terms of mechanics, on an LoA level, he is absolutely balls-to-the-wall correct in his assessment.
There is something deeper happening here.
It takes Darkworker eyes to see it.
An offer: If you're interested, and you have access to Skype, reach out to me on the contact form on my site. I'm more than happy to work with you, pro-bono. If Darkworking isn't for you, fine, but rebuilding is for everyone.
If you decide to pass, just three statements:
1) You haven't hit bottum. Deep down, you know that.
2) Don't bother killing yourself. It would be redundant. You know that too.
3) Every human being ever called to greatness has fallen with a thud, just like you right now. You should smile when you think about that. I do. :D
Your move, Chief.
I have to agree somewhat with Steve though. Just look at your handle... "broken"... you are settleing into your world of pain.
I'm not just spouting rubbish here, I've been through hell many many times. My entire life from age 16-23 was pretty much complete ****/hell every day with many many bouts of considered suicide, crying, hating everything, asking "Why me?", lonliness, etc...
Now I love my life so much EVERY damn DAY I would not DARE waste one second of this ****ing gold! :D :D :D
I did that ... myself. I pulled myself out of that **** and made it into the great thing it is now.
So yeah, you can do these amazing things for yourself.
Just don't expect it to be easy, or happen over night.
I'd suggest taking up Asmoday's offer, he's a level-headed guy who knows his stuff.
This one is for Steve Pavlina:
Although it is necessary to strive toward positive outcomes it is also necessary to have a clean house. A human is not a machine and canít be set to happy. Life affects us and we must deal with these feelings until they stop influencing our actions. If you sweep your hurts under your rug in order to put up a happy face you are out for a stinky home.
Broken has listed all things she has swept under the rug in her life and is looking at them, dealing with them. Only when she accepts (and loves) her life and herself, she will stop being limited by her past and will have a strong platform to build her positive goals.
Unresolved strong feelings will influence your positive goals regardless how many times you write and read them.
To the rest of the group:
Broken is a very good name. It is an acceptance of a need for healing and improvement.
I didn't put such deep thought into the forum name I chose, so there is no deep underlying meaning. This is the first time I've been unemployed since I was 15 years old, so it did bring me to realize I have to actively work on fixing my personal issues since ignoring them and just trying to act as normal as possible didn't work. If "Broken" happens to fit that well, it was accidental. ;)
I don't completely disagree with everything in Steve's blog post. I just think it's situational. To put it bluntly, no matter how many times I write positive things on a piece of paper, if my mother decides to take a bottle of pills and seize on my bedroom floor, it will happen regardless of what I may or may not dwell on. The fact I've "broadcasted" it has nothing to do with whether or not it happens again, and having that type of thing going on in your home on a daily basis, as I did back then, isn't something that can be ignored.
I don't bring up the parts about my mother because those still bother me. She is much better now. I brought that up because that is when my job performance started suffering and I lost my first job. Now I've lost 2 jobs in a row. I think much of the reason I typed it all out here is because I've never told anyone everything, and the above is the most I've ever told at once. When I'm in trouble at work, I don't tell them what's wrong because they don't need excuses from me. Maybe I just needed atleast one person to make me feel reassured that I'm not a horrible person and there is a legitimate reason for what is going on, and you did.
I may never be exactly where I want to be, but I'm changing my career path now and I think it is a huge step in the right direction.
I am with fishbelowtheice. You should do "The Landmark Forum". I want to see your problem solved. Landmark forum would certainly help you get it.
There are some incredible people out there who would want to help you!!
All the Best!
As others have said, you are a very good writer. There are several positive things I see in what you have written. Probably the biggest is your ability to see the circumstances you grew up in, but not become a victim to them. Yes, they influenced you, but no, they are not controlling you. Likewise with the situation at your last job. And by reporting the situation at that job, you were acting with integrity. That hospital will be under some scrutiny now, and in the near term, at least, the patients will no longer be subjected to unlicensed techs. That's a good thing!
A few more practical thoughts ... not suggestions, really, more thoughts to help you spin in a positive direction. Is there a registry for rad techs where you live? Might you be able to sign on as a registry tech? That way you would not be tied to one job, and would have the ability to work as and where you were interested in - coming in, using your skills, but not having to subject yourself to the politics or interpersonal issues of any one hospital. Another thought, as you are now studying software development, I'm sure you've worked with digital radiography. There's a huge field there, and folks with experience on the medical side have quite an edge over the pure tech folks. On the one hand, you might need to make a clean break with what you had been doing, on the other hand, you have skills and background that you may be able to leverage very well in this field. Third thought - because you are a good writer - have you thought of blogging? I don't know much about it besides reading them ... but I'd read yours! There are many directions you could spin it, from whistleblowing and the medical establishment, to your family background and rising above that, to the maturity you've gained about dealing with people in the workplace.
From what you've written, you are not just a surviver, you are more. You didn't just survive your upbringing, you took care of your family at a young age, and handled things at home and held down a job at the same time. In your most recent work experience, at a certain point you chose not to buckle under and continue in a personally draining and professionally unethical situation, you took decisive action. I see someone who is really not broken, just a bit battered, but who has within what it takes to rise above circumstances and make something much more satisfying out of your life.
I relate to this person because I know what emotional abuse is like. I know what it's like to feel "broken" and, to act like a person is stupid for venting their pain?
I have received advice like that, that I was stupid for venting and should only focus on the positive, but you know what, maybe some people have a mental and emotional need to vent more than other people. And from what I've found venting has emotional and mental benefits. <3
I agree with roxyruby, while I do understand Steve Pavlina's point of view. I'm currently debating whether I'm ENTJ or INTJ, but as an XNTJ I can definitely identify with his reaction. We're not good empathizers and we're not good with being sensitive to others' feelings naturally. And we really just want people to "just make sense", dammit. It usually takes a big emotional crisis of our own to start striving to do that sort of thing -- not that Steve hasn't been through crises, but perhaps not a type of crisis where he realized how hurtful he can come across, even when he's trying to be positive and take others' feelings in account ("I'm not trying to single out the OP, but I'm linking to her post on my immensely popular blog and criticizing her approach anyway"). Whatever.
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