Procrastinators Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from chronic procrastination.

Social stigma due to procrastination


Hi all, right now at my masters, apart from having lots of troubles to finish my thesis and being constantly threatened by academic authorities to be kicked out if i dont hurry up in finishing, I feel totally isolated from classmates and stigmatized by every professor and director in that school. The school is tiny, so all the gossip concerning my problem has reached, if not my classmates, at least 4 o 5 authorities (my own tutor, grad director, school director and similars) because between them they have been discussing about what to do with me because i didnt hand in full draft in the due date. I keep asking for extensions and honestly, they are so closed minded and workaholic people that i absolutely cant consider saying i have any kind of avoidance addiction or problem (though i did say the facts: that couldn't write much in 4 months), they just wouldnt understand. So i just said something partially true: that these last 4 months (when i shouldve completed my draft) I was busy with other kind of work which was also important and that i just didnt manage my time appropriately and it was a mistake on my part. So now basically all these professors think im lazy or if not, irresponsible for not having considered this master a priority (because by the way, i have a scholarship). Everytime i meet with tutor or director to ask for an additional extension I also show what i have done so far, the little I have been able to write, and which for me, its a huge progress, because writing this thesis (which i dont like because i dont like the master, just recently discovered that) is an everyday agony. However, everytime i go and show my progress to them i get absolutely no credit, they just criticize it, say its nothing, say its poorly written, say i should have finished by now, say i demean the schools reputation, and all these horrible things that just make me want to throw myself from the roof of my house. I had never felt so rejected, stigmatized and unsupported in any school as in this one.

I created this problem. It was unnecessary. If i just had done the stupid draft, i wouldnt be living all this hell right now. However, at the time seemed impossible. I want to believe that, it is true when i say that i couldnt do it, its not cuz i was lazy or managed my time badly. It really felt like i couldnt physically or mentally put any effort on doing it. All my other classmates are pretty much done with the draft, i guess that also doesnt motivate me, since i keep asking myself, why cant i just do it like they did?. I know I have the answer to that, I have a problem which they dont, I need healing, I AM healing, since im really working on recovery, using chatbox, going to Anon meetings, reading literature, going to individual therapy, and a bunch of other stuff. I just want to feel some acceptance. I know i wont get it from the people in that school, so I should stop asking for it. Just show my progress, and close my ears to my school's authorities demeaning words, and instead, listen to the words from PA and my other support groups, and my HP. Anyway, I just needed to get it out, it feels so horrible when you're doing your best, but non-procrastinators are unable to see that and instead keep trying to make you feel guilty or wanting you to believe you're lazy, stupid, immature, or irresponsible...Thanks for reading.

routing for an4ever

i always like reading your posts cuz altho you're struggling, you already seem to have a conceptual grasp of the situation. You seem trying to take the next step and make what you know in your head a reality in your life. I am the same way often.

I know you already know this cuz you already said it, but i'll affirm it--you are not in fact lazy, or irresponsible. You have a relatively rare problem that most people do not suffer from. Your academic bosses are ignorant to your condition, so they map your behavior onto what they do know. But their conclusions are simply uninformed. I doubt it's worth the effort to educate them, for reasons you stated, so, yeah, you're right, you just have to ignore their simple-minded characterizations of you. They're ignorant, prejudiced, uneducated, uninformed, simpletons. So there!

Now when *I* look at you, i *know* what it's like, firsthand, to not be able to get started, even something that's really important. And so when i see you making progress, i see it as having overcome a huge obstacle. So Kudos to you!

the touch of the master's hand:

fall down seven times, get up eight - japanese proverb



I am so sorry to hear about the response you are getting from professors, etc. at your school. It sounds to me like their statements and attitude are totally unprofessional, clearly unkind, and certainly not designed to actually help you move forward. To the extent you're able to ignore them (not to say that would be easy!), you'll surely be better off. Good luck to you in getting the draft completed soon.


I heard this saying at a 12 Step meeting, from someone describing an important aspect of her recovery: "I no longer go to the hardware store to shop for bread."

That really struck me because I have wasted so much time and emotional energy trying to get approval from people and institutions that just don't stock the product. 

Today I still feel the sting of disapproval, especially when my procrastination gets exposed.  But it happens alot less often than it did pre-PA.  And it no longer feels like a mortal wound.  After a bit I can usually laugh at myself a little and say, "There I go again, shopping for bread at the hardware store!"

The important thing is to acknowledge the feelings, process them with the Steps and Tools as you have done here - good job, by the way! - and then take just one small step forward.  You can do it!  We all can; we just need a ittle more help, and we've got it here. See you in Chat soon!  :-)

"My boundaries enclose a pleasant land." Psalm 16


Thanks for sharing that about "shopping for bread at the hardware store".
Glad you passed that on from whomever you learned it from.
I'll be passing it along, too!


i totally feel like word is out about me at school too, if its of any comfort.

all i can to do is try to say to myself that im doing the best i can. i try to think of how far i've come despite my challenges. sometimes its easier to be nice to myself than others.

does your school have a disability/accessibility office? i find they are very helpful.