Hey guys. I’m really really low right now. My girlfriend just passed the NREMT. Something she never would of done without me telling her to go for it. And I am happy for her. It’s a hard grueling test. I can’t pass it. I’ve taken it twice now and have failed twice. I get two more tries. But, I feel so defeated. Anyone I know who’s ever passed, has passed on the first try. And I feel so worthless. Like I wanted to do this for years. Letting life stop me and made excuses for it. And I can’t do it. And now, she just trys and does it. I don’t want to hate her. I don’t want to reflect my suffering on her happy occasion. But, I can’t help but, hate myself and feel like I should give up and not bother. Obviously I’m not good enough. It just hurts and I can’t help but, be hurt by knowing I’m not good enough for my dream. It took me so long to get my dream. And now it feels like it’s shattered and gone. And I just don’t know what to do.
Hi @Enkou666. I’m sorry to read that you are feeling so bad about yourself.
Just because you didn’t pass on your first two tries doesn’t mean that you aren’t good enough. Just because you only know people who passed on the first try doesn’t mean that there aren’t people out there that take the test multiple times before passing. There’s a reason they give you more than one try to pass it. I don’t really know anything about the testing for an NREMT, but I do know that when it’s done right, any certificate that’s for anything considered medical is difficult to get. Anything that’s emergency medical is especially difficult, and actually doing it is difficult.
What if you put your thinking to other types of testing in life? What about getting your driver’s license? How many people are there who have a driver’s license that passed the first time? How many of them shouldn’t be driving? They swerve and sway and go into the other lane and are always on their phone, texting, not paying attention to the road at all. Does that mean that the people who didn’t pass until their fourth try shouldn’t be driving? I know this isn’t a great example, but just try applying the same concept to driving. Or anything that requires a certificate. Maybe you don’t know anyone who’s a good driver and so it doesn’t apply well.
Everyone is different in how they learn. Maybe you just need to study a little more. Maybe you need to learn in a different way or go to a different place. What if the way they are teaching you isn’t beneficial to you? Maybe you need to take a break and come back to it at a later time. Separate yourself from your girlfriend’s “win.” Wait a year and try again. Maybe you’re just meant to do something else. I know you said this is your dream, but dreams can change.
The fact that you know you have two more times to test is also stressful and can mess up the outcome of your testing. Even when you know the answers, you can give some wrong answers because you stress about trying to pass. That’s a lot of pressure to put on yourself.
Don’t give up on yourself yet. There’s still time.
You’re not a failure. If you failed twice, then maybe the third one will be the right one! Your capacities are not measured by the number of times you try. What remains important is to try. I understand that it’s disappointing and stressful, especially when you have someone close to you who succeeded at the first time. And it’s hard not to enter in a comparison circle. I get it. We all do that sometimes, especially when it’s about something that matters to us. But it won’t be healthy for any of you. We all have moments of success and disappointment in our lives. I’m pretty sure you already accomplished other things in your life that are yours entirely. Also there are a lot of people who pass this exam and the result they have doesn’t say anything about your own journey. Especially because we’re just all different.
This kind of exam is always subjective, even though we think it’s based on kinda universal measurements - it’s not. You can also have the capacities for this but this type of exam might not suit you. When we fail at an exam, there could be a lot of reasons behind. And to identify them will help you to increase your chance of success the next time. What could you improve? What would be more helpful to you so you could learn in a more effective way? What was more difficult to you? Would it be possible for your girlfriend to help you? Because she might be able to help you too! It can be an opportunity for both of you to help each other and accomplish your dreams together. You don’t have to be ashamed of anything.
Hang in there friend. I believe in you.
Once upon a time, my dream was to be a mechanical engineer. Long story short, I flunked out of BSME programs at 2 different schools and only had an associate’s degree to show for my 6 years in school. Of course engineering school was tough, but all my peers were passing and graduating. I couldn’t begin to comprehend how I wasn’t good enough to follow my dream, when the concepts came so naturally to me.
Fast forward 7 years, I am leading New Product Development for a modular interior company. I started with a simple CAD job from Craigslist when I dropped out the second time, moved up to a couple of mechanical designer jobs where I learned to solve application-specific problems for standard-custom machines, and now to put it simply I’m an inventor. Each time I got a new job, the prospective employers reached out to me. I was the perfect fit each time because of my passion, aptitude, and hunger for knowledge. A lot of doors have stayed shut for me because I don’t have a degree, but the doors that have opened have been the right ones at the right times.
Where’s all this going? To @Micro’s point, don’t let a one-size-fits-all test tell you that you aren’t good enough, or that you “can’t.” If you want to, find a way. Maybe you have to be certified to be an EMT, but could you be a firefighter? An athletic trainer? A trauma nurse? Could you drive the ambulance? Where else do your talents and passions intersect? I don’t know much about emergency medicine, but I don’t believe in “can’t.” I could only be an “engineer” if I got my degree, but I’m one hell of a designer, I’m doing what I always dreamed of doing, and I would put my abilities up against any “engineer.”
Even after I got my career off the ground, I spent years feeling like a failure because I didn’t have my degree. It didn’t help matters that my girlfriend at the time left me for a guy who graduated from an elite mechanical engineering school. But it went against every fiber of my being to do anything other than engineering. I had to do it. So I did it. And somewhere along the way, I realized that I was doing it, and doing it damn well, degree notwithstanding. This is easy to preach, way harder to internalize, but don’t focus on your failures. Focus on your dreams. Make them happen. Hell, you’ve got 2 more chances. The NREMT didn’t allow 4 chances just because. As for your girlfriend, she can mentor you, give you career insights, and help you network with others in the field, and she’ll be damned proud of you when you realize your dreams!
TRY AGAIN. And again and again and again. DO not give up your dream just because it doesn’t work the first two times. You should never stop fighting for what makes you happy. NEVER.
Thanks guys. I was in a really bad mental spiral when I wrote this. My fear of failure piling next to my girlfriends wonderful achievement. I really needed all of this. Thank you guys for being the wonderful amazing community you guys are.
You’ve got this friend!