So, I am applying for "regular-person jobs", and, so far, am getting nowhere. You would think that doctoral-level study in a writing-heavy discipline would be good experience for working as a receptionist, at least? Nope, not without years of experience and a diploma in Administrative Something-or-Other. What about retail? Nope, you need experience there too, and, even moreso, you apparently have to be very young and conventionally attractive. (When you inhabit a socially stigmatized body, one that causes people to view you as inferior, broken, lazy, and stupid in spite of your achievements, doors slam shut pretty damn fast, and hard.)
So, what about back-room types of jobs, where the public doesn't have to see me, then? No luck there either yet. I've taken every relevant career-skills workshop I can, and have had professionals review my resume and cover letters, so the problem doesn't seem to lie there. I'm starting to wonder if it's only possible for people who are already wealthy, or attractive enough to get married to an employed spouse, to actually complete a doctorate? I'm neither.
Q: What, then, can I actually do to support myself through the already-onerous process of writing a dissertation? What did *you* do? Or your colleagues?