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In Serious Need of a Job



I'm 22 and am worried that I'll never get a job I can keep. It seems impossible because of my severe social anxiety. Interacting with people is very difficult, and I screw even simple things up.

In the past I had applied to many jobs, as early as 16, but never heard back from anyone. It wasn't until late summer or early fall last year when I got a call from a manager of Little Caesars. She was going out of town soon so I had to do an interview the same day. I was freaking out because I had no time to prepare. Miraculously I got the job, since they were desperate, even though I know the interview could have gone a lot better than it did.

I was really happy with myself at first. It felt unreal that I finally had a job. I couldn't believe I was finally earning my own income. But the first day of work I made a ton of mistakes. Every day after that, hours before work I would feel sick from stress. I would be nauseous and shaking because of dreading going in. I messed things up constantly, and got upset when customers were rude. I was lucky to have a patient manager and nice co-workers, but I couldn't take the job much longer. I only lasted a month before quitting. I'm still amazed that I didn't get fired.

For awhile I was relieved, being much happier with no money because I wasn't having to stress about the job anymore. But it's been at least a few months since then and I can't keep going without steady income. I live with my mom and two younger brothers, and my mom struggles with money herself. I can't afford basic things I need such as clothes and shoes, and have had to miss out on a ton of things I wanted to do. My dad pays my phone bill and is always late with it, so it's usually off for a few days.

I can't live like this anymore. I feel worthless since I'm still being taken care of financially by my parents at this age, and they can barely afford to do so. I get at least $100 a month from my mom for helping my youngest brother with his homework since my mom works the graveyard shift, and I usually get extra for picking him up from school as well. But lately she hasn't had the money to pay me, and the amount is way too little for me to live off of. I'm lucky I don't have to worry about being homeless, but ideally, I'd like to help out with bills while I'm still here, and want to have my own place.

I don't know what to do for work. I was a cashier at Little Caesars, and that was a disaster. Almost every job is a cashier though, or something else that involves interacting with customers. I'm also worried about having to go through more interviews. It was a miracle I passed the first and so far only one I've been through, but future interviewers are going to wonder why I only lasted one month at a job, and why at 22 that's the only work I've done.

I haven't been to college, despite my mom wanting me to. She's even been encouraging me to go to school until I get a job, but with what money? I don't want to go back to school and need to do something with my life. All my old friends are successful, having good jobs, and I'm a loser who can't even handle being a cashier and is too afraid to learn to drive. I want to work from home, and have done a lot of research on possible online jobs, but there doesn't seem to be anything I can actually do.

I do writing and digital artwork as a hobby, and hope to sell children's eBooks eventually, as well as designs and other things, but I need a better drawing tablet and laptop in order to get anywhere with that, so I need a regular job before I can even attempt it. I might not be able to make a living off of that anyway.

The only way I can move on with my life is to get a job, and that seems like something that's never going to happen. I'm tired of being a failure and disappointment to my family, feeling too awkward to reconnect with friends I haven't seen in years, and being miserable all the time. But I can't do normal work, and there's nothing I can find that fits my needs.


Well-known member
Jan 12, 2019
Minnesota, USA
Hi @GabbyT17 and welcome to the forum.
My apologies for the late reply. I just saw your post.

Sorry that you are going through tough times. Don’t look down on yourself and don’t feel ashamed. You couldn’t work for a legitimate reason.
Are you seeing any doctor for your social anxiety? Are you on any treatment like therapy, medication or both?
How long have you had this problem?

Since you have caring and supportive parents, I suggest that you treat what’s holding you down then proceed to better your life.
If you are keen on getting a job, you should consider visiting the human services office in your town. They offer training and work shops and can also help you look for a job. I also think they offer classes for Microsoft word, excel or other like data entry.

If you can’t deal with people, a good choice would be to work in big department stores in stocking. You only deal with few people and don’t have to deal with rude customers. You can organize boxes in the storage area or items on shelves.

You can contact me through private messages if you need further help.

Take care and I hope things get better for you and your family.


Well-known member
Feb 28, 2018
What about a back office clerical job? Typing or filing? You would just have to interview with a temp agency and then they would place you in a short term temporary situation so you wouldn't have client contact. You can tell the agency no phones. Also you could do projects on the computer, especially if you know excel.


Well-known member
Mar 11, 2019
This is such a classic response but believe me, it's true. YOU ARE SO YOUNG AND THINGS WILL CHANGE!!! This isn't to say that what you're feeling isn't real and important, it is but the road is so long ahead. It's something I frequently forget ( and I'm 28 ) and have to remind myself. If i'm older than you, then this is twice as true for your life!

At 22, this age is absolutely all about finding yourself. So you can't deal with face to face customer work ( me neither, I hate it! ), there are heaps of other things you can do. The most frustrating thing about the workforce is that it demands experience but everyone needs to start somewhere. What looks good on a beginners resume is doing work for family and friends. You mentioned that you like art and writing ( same! ). Why not start sending out emails to some publications you'd like to write for? Aim for small ones that are starting out, you'd be surprised who will contact you back.

The money situation is a lot more complex. This is something that can only be seen with more time which is so annoying because in a difficult situation, we really need answers now. But your bad experience at your first job will be something you'll totally forget in six months, believe me. You won't be the same person you are today in six months and this applies to your life as well.

These days, less and less people are making it through the probation period. Millenials are just way less OK with sticking it out at a job that makes them feel like sh*t, and why should they? I also just recently quit a job after 1 month because my boss was horrible to me. We were both bad fits for the jobs we had and we have learnt things about ourselves in the process. I learnt that I can't work in small teams and you learnt that customer facing work isn't for you.

The point is that there are options and there are new opportunities. It's just at this point in your life, you can't see it because you feel trapped. But as someone who's been in your situation and then awoken to a whole new life, let me promise you, your life is changing slowly everyday and nothing is ever 'stuck' no matter how much it feels to be.

You'll make it, it's already happening!!!