I am a 35 years old guy who specialized in civil lawsuits. I am very successful at what I do and I have been doing it for most of my life. So much so I am able to put four of my kids through private school, my wife hasn’t worked for the past ten years and we have a beautiful three stories home with an indoor swimming pool and landscaped garden at one of the sought-after prime locations. We have a live-in housekeeper and a nanny, a weekly gardener and his assistant.

The problem is I am miserable. I totally hate my job. I used to be able to lie to myself this lawyer thing is something I can deal with, it’s all about the money or I can save and retire soon. I’m heavily in debt with the mortgage from the house and the 3 cars we owned. It will take me another 10 years to clear up everything even as successful as I am now. And I no longer can lie to myself that I am happy, I am loving my job.

Some days, I just sit in my car outside my office building, dreading the moment I have to walk in and sit in my office. At times, I will lie to my partners and made up some excuses like someone in the family is sick so I can skip work and go to the seaside or even just to roam around the malls. Some days are just harder than others and I’ll feel so frustrated that I am bursting at seams. All these feelings without the knowledge of my family. They’ll go crazy if they know I desperately want to quit my job. I think my wife will leave me.

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I looked up at forums and google my condition, they said I have the classic symptoms of mid-life crisis but I don’t believe this is it. I have never liked the law. I took up law because my family have always been in the business. My grandfather is a retired judge and my dad is a well-known legislator. It is just simpler to follow their footsteps into law school. My dad won’t have it otherwise anyway. He stopped speaking to my sister when she quit law school midway and started her own fashion line. That was 10 years ago and they still haven’t spoken to each other even at family events.

Yes, my father has high hopes for his children but because of his expectations, I was stifled into studying law. Thankfully, I seem to have a knack for it and managed to sail through both my degree and my career. From one high profile case to another even higher profile case, I managed to win them all but I know deep inside me, I’m not satisfied with what I am doing. Maybe because I know I don’t have a heart in law, I made it up by perseverance and diligence that made me a partner of my current firm within five years.

So what does my inner voice say? If I can have my way, I’ll be a writer. I am always fascinated by famous authors like Charles Dickens and Mark Twain when I was young. My mother used to say that I am a dreamer and that I can imagine a whole world of adventures, so vividly that it will come alive with my words. I used to dream up of fantasy stories to entertain my mother until she passes on and there’s nobody who wants to hear a little boy’s made up stories anymore. I secretly admire JK Rowling, Sidney Sheldon and Jeffery Archer for their determination to complete a series of books whereas my dream is to write only one.

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It’ll never come true. Maybe when I retired in 30 years time when my kids have all graduated from their expensive overseas college and when I don’t really give a damn if my wife leaves me. Maybe I can sell off the house and 3 cars, go and live somewhere in the countryside, quiet, quaint and peaceful. I don’t give a damn if my kids succeed in their lives. I have a controlling father that I allowed to destroy mine, I’m not going to be the one destroying theirs. I know he is disappointed that my children have plenty of other interests and none of them is law. The closest he gets is my youngest son who wants to be a police officer when he grows up. I’m not too worried, he is just 9 years old.

From today until the day I retired or drop dead, I really hate my job. But I can’t up and leave without making my family upset. They are accustomed to the lifestyle I gave them, I don’t want to upset that. My grandfather is currently bedridden but of sound mind, I don’t want to upset him either. The only light at the end of the tunnel I see is that I ride through my entire life as a lie and hopefully, one day I will be able to see the book I have written on the bookshelf in a bookstore.


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51 replies on “Whisper: I Secretly Hate My Job

  1. Thank you for sharing this. A few years back when I was an intern at the hospital, there was a person with a similar case. Except he was in finance and wanted to be a travel photographer. I hope this person gets to do the one thing (book publishing) he wants for himself..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I hope so too. It’s one thing not knowing what is your passion and work meaninglessly until you found yourself. It’s another thing that you know what is your passion and yet unable to pursue it because you’re trapped.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Thia, I’ll ask him if he wish to connect, perhaps I’ll pass him your website for him to reach out to you. The decision is his since he requested anonymity to tell his story. But you’re wonderful to want to help him.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You are one in a billion who is blessed enough with everything in life, which is dreamt by billion people out there. Don’t disguise yourself.

    Writing is an inbuilt passion you have. So just start writing in your spare time. I am sure that you will be able to dedicate one hour everyday to quench your thirst. Stop seeing yourself as a looser and start thinking as the most blessed.
    Also try to help the underprivileged, by taking up their cases FOC and you will feel much satisfied. Be thankful and enjoy the blessings of this life. Love you for the sake of Ummanity. May God bless you. (Pardon me if you feel me too plain and ……) This is Straight from the Guts. Smile please. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

      1. You are welcome Kally.
        Please don’t mind if my words were felt to be bit harsh, please treat it as a medicine, which is not always sweet.
        I wish him true success. May God Bless him with the wisdom to make right choices in life and be satisfied. Good luck.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting blog post. Can this lawyer write before or after work? Not an ideal solution but many people break in to writing by originally treating it like a favorite hobby until they have something published and it can move from sideline to to primary focus.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m not sure who wrote this, but I do relate.
    I took the other road. I had a very successful college career in business and was looked up to scholastically.
    That all changed the minute I finished my degree. I had a true interest in spirituality. I went to the seminary to get my Masters, but I didn’t find my true self in that endeavour either. Something was still missing.
    I’ve gone in and out of business trying to find it. Overall I’ve been successful, but this not being my calling, I never had the will to pursue one line of work for life.
    Then I found it. I don’t know if it has a title. Let’s call it conscious creation. I started a website, thejobblog.net. to share my true passion.
    I don’t know where this will lead. Will it gain me honour and riches? I don’t know. All I know is, I’m engaged, happy, and ready to dive into each successive day.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good that you have found your calling and follow your heart. Nothing more painful and heartbreaking to not realize your passion in this lifetime. Thank you for sharing your life story to inspire us. I’m sure your advice will reach the person who wrote this.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I have always wanted to be a writer, but never gave myself permission to write, unless it was for a class. Now I blog. So far it has been challenging, personally very rewarding, and I have met some wonderful people through the blogosphere. Will it ever be successfu? Maybe not. I’m almost at the one year point and will keep on until I can’t or don’t want to do this anymore.,

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Blogging and writing are two different things. Blogging is like writing from your shirt sleeve, usually a journal of ongoing insights.
        Writing really gets into the juicy stuff, the real us. We can go much deeper, because we can say more without exhausting our readers.
        As a book writer and blogger, I use both, but for very different reasons.
        I tend to forget if I don’t get the everyday thoughts down. Blogging settles content in my mind.
        The book, however, is where the full thought comes into being. That’s where one will get the full panorama.
        One may be one kind of writer, the other, or both. Whatever suites you is what you must do, my friend. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Any type of writing requires us to draw on different parts of our being: poetry, fiction, non-fiction, essays, thought pieces, research pieces. The topic, length, proposed audience, required format, prospective publisher all lay out their own requirements. I look upon a blog as yet another type of writing. On that we may have to agree to disagree. Since all of these are points of view, I don’t think there is a single correct answer. Good luck with whatever writing you elect to pursue.

          Liked by 2 people

    1. I have met people who loves their jobs even though they are at it for more than 10 years. I’ll like to believe I’ll still love my last corporate job for the next 20 years if I hadn’t resign to move away to another country. I guess it’s what you do and whether the company recognize and appreciate your efforts.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes, I get you. There are times we really hate certain factors of our jobs or we really had a horrible week (especially when you are dealing with the public), but overall, we still love what we are doing and still love our jobs…maybe wish that we have a wand and make those nasty ones go away in a puff!

          Liked by 1 person

  5. So sad that you feel this way. I pray you reduce your debt. First though… speak to your wife. Have a heart to heart chat with her. She like you values you and the family. You “think” she will leave you? She may just surprise you and be your strongest ally. Whittle down that debt. Downsize. Upgrade YOU and your life. Invest in you. Have faith in yourself. Write. Write and wrut

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Write somemore…. you can have your book as you yearn for it. Take comfort in the chapters of your life. Do somethings slowly and change your mindset and your lifestyle. You have only ONE life. Be brave.
    … and keep your smile. Kind regards from kavita in Sunshiny South Africa.☺

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Tough dilemma this writer finds himself in. I would advice him to open up to his wife. If the relationship is solid, she will understand.
    Maybe by given up expensive vacations, moving in a less expensive house, gives him freedom to work less hours and start pursuing his dreams.
    Also should he keep looking for jobs connected to his experiences, diploma’s but give him more satisfaction.
    Compromises, yes, always necessary, but not to an extend you will have to loose yourself.
    Because, as much as he is telling himself he can, he won’t be able to stuck to this way of living for long.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wonderful advice once again, Patty. I think it’s important to have open and honest communication with your family. If they love him, they will understand and support him like he has supported them over the years.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. As someone who practiced law for 25 years, I found this to be a tragic post. You are clearly an intelligent and gifted man. But your assumptions about your family and your purpose in life seem to me badly flawed.

    Are you wife and children so materialistic that they would prefer a luxurious lifestyle to your happiness? That is difficult to believe. Even if that is your wife’s attitude, is that an attitude you want to cultivate in your children while they are still malleable? How many homes do they really need? How many cars?

    Your grandfather may have a narrow view of success, focused exclusively on the law. Do you view it as the responsibility of your own children to follow you into the law? From what you’ve said, I highly doubt it. That alone should tell you how misguided your grandfather’s view is.

    Chances are your grandfather wants you to be secure and happy. He found security, honor, and personal satisfaction in the law, so he urged the profession on you. If he’d been a jockey, he might have urged you to become a jockey. Only you can determine if the fit is right for you. You’re not a child. You’re capable of making that decision. Even he should be able to see that.

    I do not urge you to jump in at the deep end of the pool. Do not discard the partnership and corner office to set up as a free lance writer overnight. Most writers fail, at least at first…even those we now recognize as great.

    There are, however, a vast array of things lawyers can do to accomplish good. That seems to be missing from your life. Do some pro bono work that involves writing. There are countless non-profits that need help w/ grant writing, for instance. There are countless jailhouse appeals going begging. The Southern Poverty Law Center would love your help.

    Pick a cause and see whether you actually derive satisfaction from writing or whether the idea of writing is simply an escapist dream.

    Meanwhile, take solace from sacrificial living. I don’t mean to sound harsh. But there are billions of people on earth trapped in thankless and grueling jobs for more compelling reasons than those you’ve cited here.

    I wish you well.

    “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship” (Romans 12:1).

    Liked by 3 people

  9. That is so sad. Women to some extent have a chance to ‘opt out’. I don’t mean it’s easy being a Mum, but it is a point at which you can change. Men are expected to stay on the the conveyor belt once they have a mortgage and family. We brought three children up in a small house, often with no car at all! They need their Dad more than money. Downsize is the word that comes to mind. He needs to talk to his family before things get worse.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. He definitely need to have a talk with his family before he goes into depression. As of today, I know he hasn’t done anything yet to improve his life. He is rather convinced that his Wife will leave him if he quits his job.

      Like

  10. Hi! Its better to be late than never. I strongy feel that you should exactly do what you like doing and persue your own passion without minding what others think about it. I give due credit to you that, despite not liking a law career, you proved yourself.Imagine, what miracle you can create when you start doing what you like best.
    I also suggest you to go throuh my posts and they will surely help you to make a very powerful beginning of a new venture.
    I wish you all the best!
    ravi

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Its entirely my pleasure,Kally! you are welcome any time for any advice i am worthy of.
        I strongly suggest to read my maximum posts,if not all. you will surely like them and it will change your life for better and your most of doubts and queries will be solved through my posts.

        Have a great time,Kally.By the way where are you from?

        Liked by 1 person

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