Annie’s Mailbox: Feeling like a failure at age 60

Dear Annie: I am 60 years old and feel that I have accomplished next to nothing. The only worthwhile things are my husband, two children and a lovely granddaughter. They are the lights of my life.

I was let go from a previous job for something I didn’t do. My current job is awful, and it stresses me out every day. But I have no computer training, so a job change is not in the cards. Besides, businesses don’t want to hire an “old” person like me. Because my job pays next to nothing, I began charging things on credit. What was I supposed to do? I’m now in deep credit-card debt and am desperate to find the funds to pay it off.

I’m a hard worker, but feel like a useless failure. Don’t tell me to see a counselor, because there is no money to pay for it. If my car dies on me, I’ll be walking six miles to work.

At this time in my so-called life, I thought I’d be better off than I am. Please tell me what I can do. – End of the Line

Dear End: The quality of your life should not be based solely on your financial situation. Can your husband help you pay off this debt? Surely he would want to be supportive. Also try Debtors Anonymous ( debtorsanonymous.org). For a job, contact your local city hall or state government offices for help. Then try AARP ( aarp.org), which offers information and resources for senior-friendly companies.

But also, please don’t disregard your depression. There is free and low-cost counseling available through your local county services, the YWCA, any graduate school counseling department or medical school psychology department, United Way, the Samaritan Institute ( samaritaninstitute.org) and the Abraham Low Self-Help Systems ( lowselfhelpsystems.org).


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