Letter From a Native Alcoholic & Best/Worst Jobs of 2016

Segment 1: This week an alcoholic member of the Lummi Indian Tribe in Northern Washington wrote us asking for help. He suffers from clinical depression, no High School diploma, and serious difficulty in getting or keeping a job. He has 4 years of experience as a housing framer, but lost that job due to showing at work drunk one day.

Brandon, who has struggled with depression and alcoholism himself, provides some advice on how to overcome his demons and opens up about his own struggles. As a hiring manager, I understand the difficulties of trying to secure a job with no high school diploma, as well as the troubles in finding employment even when you do have a diploma. I share some advice on getting his GED and how to actually get the jobs you apply for. The full text of his letter is available at the bottom of this page, and any comments or advice you leave on this page will be seen by him.

Download to the full show and listen to the letter and our sage advice right here

Segment 2: As a followup to our listener’s letter, we go over the CareerCast 2016 list of best and worst jobs! On the best list, #6 is mathematician, which I definitely don’t understand the reasoning behind that. I tell a story of an old roommate I had who was going for a PhD in mathematics.

On the worst list, yes disc jockey, broadcasting, and sales all make the list. Some of the other ones really surprised me though, because they are such respected positions I have no idea why they are on the list of worst job positions.

Listen to the full list as well as our advice to our Lummi letter writer in this weeks audio file. Also don’t forget to check us out at nativetalk.net where we have a Native YouTube channel, and the ability to download all the audio files we’ve ever done!

Cliff and Brandon are both enrolled members of the Puyallup Tribe of Indians and host the Tribal Podcast each and every week with all our past episodes available online. They talk about native issues in the news and anything of interest to Native Americans!

*****Full Text of Today’s Letter*****

from (name withheld)

hello cliff and brandon. i am a native from the Lummi tribe near the canadia border in washington, aslo near bellingham. i was lisening to your show for some weeks now and thought i would write you a email because i have problems. i am 24 years old, and never conpleted high school. i was always kind of a rebel and struggled with depression. i guess i still do. i dropped out at 17 because i got a job framing houses. i kept that job for 4 years, and after work would go to bars to drink and have fun. i had a fake id so getting the alcohol was never a problem for me. i was already a drinker in high school, from about 15 and over time even i have to say my drinking has only gotten worse not better. i tried some of the harder stuff a few times, but drinking has always been my weakness. one night, i had too mich to drink and showed up for wotrk still driunk, and was fired. for the last 4 years i havent been able to find any steady work other than odd jobs here and there. in a way it almost makes my depression worse, even though ive always really struggled with that anyway. ive applied to any job under the sun i can think of applying to. nobody will hire me. i cant even seem to geta steady job in my own tribe. it always seems to be a problem that i don’t have a high school diploma for everyone. i do make money through different opportunities, but it never lasts long enough to really get a head. im always chasing my tail and i really feel like ‘why am i even doing this’ all the time. i dont like how much i drink, but i cant seem to stop it either. i dont know what to do to make things better. you said a few times on your show that you were here to help, well i need help. if you have any advise for me, i really appreciate it.


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