NEET - Can I fix it?

I've posted a bit recently so apologies if you've seen this before.

TLDR: Basically I was always in work (or university) up until the age of 24. Then I quit because I'm stupid, and now I'm 27 (nearly 28) and I have been unemployed for nearly 4 years. Is it actually possible to redeem myself in the eyes of society?

I was a web developer, using a particular language. I'm looking for more jobs for that language, but they're not that common (especially junior ones). I should probably just apply for anything really. Last time I really gave the job hunt a go was a few months ago, I applied to maybe a dozen jobs, and I chased some of them up after a while, but I heard nothing, which sucks.

Maybe I just need to spam more and more job applications? And do that every single day? Work as hard as possible at getting a new job? And instead of complaining I should just send more and more job applications?

Yes maybe I should. I'm massively aware of being out of work for so long though. It looks very bad, from a professional point of view AND from a normal, social point of view as well. You can say "it's fine, quit your fucking whining" but we all know that someone who has spent nearly 4 years doing nothing will be looked upon with suspicion.

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I guess I have one "excuse", maybe? I was sectioned (involuntarily detained in a psychiatric unit) from Nov 2017 to about June 2018, apart from Feb 2018 when I was out for a bit. Depression was the main thing they were talking about. Then they mentioned "prodromal psychosis" (the stage before you actually get psychotic) but I don't understand that, because I never had hallucinations or delusions. Thankfully I've been out for months now.

So I've been mentioning on applications that I had "health issues" during my gap, and I haven't explained it more than that. Perhaps I should say it was mental health though? Certainly it seems trendy at the moment to give sympathy towards those with mental health problems (not that I feel I deserve it, but if it can get me a job again then maybe I should mention it). But on the other hand I think some people will always view you as an unpredictable lunatic, or maybe just a weak sack of shit, if you admit to these problems.

Realistically do you think I can actually turn it around and set myself on a normal, respectable path in life after 4 years of unemployment? Will anyone want to employ someone who has been NEET for 4 years and is nearly 28?

Join the military as an IT MOS/rate before you get too old to enlist.

Oh and don't mention any of the psychiatric bs your talking about here.

Most people lie to their interviewers or over exaggerate to get the job. Sad that todays world is so judgemental like that. If you really need it though you could cook up some scheme with people you know as referees etc.

Not endorsing it or anything. But if you have the qualifications and can actually do the job, but you've just been idle for a few years and they're just going to judge you based on that, you might have to do it.

Thanks for replying. I have thought about the military, I was looking at a Logistics Officer position in the navy, which I am still within the age range for. I had to google "MOS" and it looks like an American thing - I'm European by the way.

In fact when I was in my last job I was going to the gym and I was practicing my running on the treadmill, because I had the navy test in mind. You have to do 2.4km, I think, on a treadmill in under 11 minutes or something. And I was getting it after a bit of practice.

I bet people would rip me to shit if I mentioned being unemployed for four years though so I guess I should keep that shit to myself.

Yeah fair enough. "Health reasons" is probably the best way to go about it.

I really don't want to lie at all. Not mentioning something (e.g. being sectioned) is definitely acceptable, there is nothing saying you HAVE to disclose something like that, of course. But lying is something I really don't want to do - it's just going to come back and bite you in the arse HARD. I definitely don't think it's worth it. It's going to create gigantic problems, it's not worth it. But thanks for replying and giving the advice. You are right that you have to think about how you're perceived, and yes you should play up your strengths, but I really don't want to lie and don't think I will resort to that because I think it will create far more problems.

You're lying about what you've been doing for 4 years. It's none of their business. You're not lying about your ability to do the work or perform the tasks required.

Telling a few fibbs about what you've been doing the past 4 years. That nobody will question you about after the interview..verses being jobless, your call...

I don't want to lie, I don't think it's worth it. Lying is treated with contempt, isn't it. And I understand why. I have always tried to be an honest person my whole life, so have all my family. If you are caught lying then you stand to lose everything you have built up. That's why it's not worth it. And think about the effort you have to put in in order to concoct a lie, and put all the things in place to make it convincing. It's really a waste of time and a self-defeating strategy, in my view. I appreciate the viewpoint though, and like I say it is obviously important how you present yourself to others, but lying is literally a way of sabotaging your appearance to others in my view.

Would you lie if a guy with a gun was in your house asking where your kids are? Cmon dude, there's a point where lying is acceptable within reason.

If you're buddys nagging you to come along to this event but you really don't feel like it. Are you gonna stomp on his feelings and say no or will say you've got plans when really you don't? Think about the situation man.

If you don't fibb you're going to be freaking jobless man...

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No employer will hire someone with that kind of gap in their life. It just raises too many red flags.
Say, how good are you at flipping burgers OP?

Apply for jobs just like anyone else. If someone notices the gap in your history, just say something vague like "I had to take time off to help with some family issues"

>Would you lie if a guy with a gun was in your house asking where your kids are? Cmon dude, there's a point where lying is acceptable within reason.
When applying for jobs is not a comparable situation. Lying on your CV or in an interview is treated with scorn, and I think it should be.

>If you're buddys nagging you to come along to this event but you really don't feel like it. Are you gonna stomp on his feelings and say no or will say you've got plans when really you don't? Think about the situation man.
I have never lied in a situation like that. I either say I'm too tired or whatever or I guess I don't respond, which maybe is rude but it's better than lying.

>If you don't fibb you're going to be freaking jobless man
I definitely don't think that's the case, whether I get a job depends on whether I apply for them, and maybe I need to refresh my skills, and also I've thought maybe to do a volunteer job for a local charity just to do something. I'm trying to redeem myself in the eyes of society, not penalise myself even more. Lying is going to make things worse, and obviously you can absolutely lose your job later down the line when they find out you lied. I am certain if I lied on a job application it would bring me a whole world of shit. Employers don't take this lightly. So personally I think it's not in my best interests, that's just me.

So you reckon I should kill myself realistically? I have thought maybe that's what I should do, maybe it's the proper thing to do. Sometimes the situation is probably just unfixable, you've fucked up in an irreparable manner. Maybe that's what I should do.

At the moment I've been saying "health issues" because that is true. I'm not going to lie and say my family had anything wrong with them because they didn't. But "health issues" is still pretty vague I guess, which I thought would be a good thing.

I see stuff in the news all the time about how companies should be aware of mental health problems and whatever, and also the web development industry definitely likes to think of itself as pretty modern when it comes to things like that, so hopefully they'd give me a shot since I do have professional web development experience and experience from university, and I have demonstrated an ability to turn up every single day for work before this current fuck up. I worked a year in a supermarket before university and I turned up every day. Then I did my degree and got a good grade. I worked in a cafe during uni for a few months and turned up every day. After uni I worked in a factory for a few months and turned up every day. Then I did my web development job for 1.5 years and I turned up every day. So I've demonstrated that ability before.

Shameless bump, do you reckon it's actually possible to redeem myself in the eyes of society, or is it irredeemable and therefore I should probably just kill myself?

No, you should start with volunteering and find different way to get a job than the regular shitty online applications. Find out some place where you can volunteer, show them you are worthy, create a new network through that. Give them reasons to recommend you or make them want to hire you. Volunteer at different places, expand your chances. You can also try to get a new certificate for a new field of work, where workforce is needed.

Didn't read the previous replies so if it has been already said, my bad and good luck user

Treat applying to jobs like a job. Churn out at least 6 applications every single day. Apply to unrelated stuff. Over time you will quickly get a job, maybe in a matter of weeks. Don't feel bad about rejection, 90% of the places you apply won't even contact you. 9.9 percent will invite you to interview, but will not hire you. But with those numbers, it might only take a couple of months to find a solid job.

Most employers don't have volunteer opportunities.

I'm affraid that I was talking about volunteering for free in associations or wwoofing. It still better than nothing and leave you enough spare time for application or personal training.

Web is hot right now. If you keep your skills up to date and have a portfolio I don't see an issue. Just lie on your resume about the employment gap or make shit up.

People have recommended volunteering, I looked at a site which advertises such things, and a local charity shop is looking for volunteers to work. I could do that. Maybe that's just taking a step in the wrong direction though; people are only going to respect you with paid employment.

Thank you for the responses though. One of these volunteer positions looks like its helping in a van, collecting and delivering furniture for this charity furniture shop. Could be alright. So if I can't get any web work, maybe I should do that, I don't know.

Even if I do this though... I've still been out of work for 4 years. Will women ever be interested me ever? Surely not. They'll think "what a fucking loser", as they probably should. So I dunno. I might be irredeemably fucked. It's easy to say "things will be fine" but to say that is to ignore the reality of the situation. There is no doubt that it's a bad, shameful situation to be in. No doubt whatsoever. Many people will look upon someone who voluntarily made themselves jobless for 4 years with disdain, and I think they are probably justified in doing so.

I don't want to lie, I think that will introduce far more problems. They will almost certainly say "okay can we get a reference from this person you say you did work for, just to check you did work there". I have had references checked in the past for jobs I worked, just to confirm I worked there. It's standard practice. Lying will fuck things up even more.

Well, you have to be humble and accept that there is a 4 years gap in your work experience. You should start with this charity work, it will start a new dynamic, it's the point, not to be stuck there forever. Find other places for volunteering, farmstead, animal shelters, whatever. You shouldn't care about women for the moment though. Focus on yourself, follow some self-improvement tips and so on.