Worried About Moving Out

I’ve been prodromal for a couple of years now which is great, but I’ve also been living with my parents working near minimum-wage jobs in that time. I’m now in nursing school and set to graduate in December (which seems so soon). I’m really looking forward to being able to afford my own place and moving out. And yet, I worry that I won’t be able to handle the stresses of adult life on my own.

I haven’t actually lived on my own that much even though I’m 30. From ages 18-22, I lived on campus at college (while working on a useless Linguistics degree). From 22-23, I was married. When I got divorced, I moved back with my parents for a year. Then I taught English abroad for a couple of years. I mostly managed – my apartments were super messy – until I had a brief psychotic episode at work and lost my job (and with it, my authorization to be in that country). I went back to Mom and Dad’s house, worked various “no-skills” jobs for a couple of years until I became a Certified Nursing Assistant. Loved it, started nursing school, now on track to being able to support myself financially when I graduate. So all that’s good.

I’m really worried about what is going to happen when I move out though. I already know that I can’t be counted upon to keep my surroundings clean, so I plan to hire a cleaning person immediately. But what about other stressors? What if being with my parents is what has kept me prodromal for the past four years? What if I have a complete psychotic break after I leave? Adding to my stress is the knowledge that the Board of Nursing can pull my license if they think I am a danger to patients. Mental illness is so stigmatized. I feel like I’ll need to be able stay prodromal in order to keep my livelihood.

Then there’s also the fact that I really want to go into OR. There are several nursing residencies in neighboring states in OR that I have a pretty good chance of getting if I apply. But that would mean moving immediately and adjusting to new job, new home, no local friends, far away from everyone I know all at once. Could be a recipe for catastrophe. Could also be a great opportunity to do what I love from the get-go.

Now having typed all that, I see that I’m viewing the world as black and white instead of in shades of grey (which is actual existence). I do worry about my ability to cope with life stresses by myself though. Can anyone relate? Any ideas of things I can do now to prepare?

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I’m impressed by your logical thinking and ability to catch yourself thinking in “black and white”. This was something I could never do. Of course, when I was in nursing school, and in my nursing profession, I was full blown psychotic so there is no comparison between you and me.

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I finally succumbed to mental illness after I took a job in another state, with no friends or family there. I thought I was invincible. Not so. I encourage you to plan having support if you move and start life anew.

I know that I will probably not do that again. You may be more stable than I was.

Don’t give up because it’s new. You’re working hard for this. You can do it!

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