I’ve experienced a lot of this. I couldn’t figure out direction very well in school and ended up changing majors a few times becuase nothing felt as though it was the one true thing that fit me. I was in school for 9 years before graduating. CS because it seemed like something a person could use in the exploration of a bunch of different disciplines and so I didn’t feel like I was cutting myself off.
I tried some therapy sessions while in school, and then a few after. They weren’t very useful. It took a manic episode brought on by antidepresents to land me in outpatient therapy for a few weeks to encounter a type of therapy that helped. for me it was cognitive behavioral therapy. that does not mean it is going to work for you, but you might want to try finding a therapist who practices that type versus what you’ve tried up until now. I haven’t stuck with any therapist. It’s not something I’m good at, but the intense weeks taught me a lot and have helped me limp along (the episode happened back in 2000). Sometimes I’m not limping. I guess I am saying this because I don’t want you to think that finding a therapist who helps somewhat will make life a lot easier. learning these things didn’t make life a breeze for me. But it helped.
anyway, I look at a lot of what you’ve written here and in this thread – you are expressing similar thoughts and have similar problems to what I’ve experienced. maybe it would help to identify the thoughts that are habits of thinking due to depression. that has helped me.
btw, being depressed is draining on your mind and body and you are doing good to have one job. A lot of things you want to accomplish to find yourself valuable are the equivalent of having 2 or 3 jobs. In my experience, it has helped to realize that I don’t have enough capability at the moment to hold down 2 or 3 jobs. it has also helped me to realize that I don’t expect other people to hold down 2 or 3 jobs and that maybe I have unresonable expectations for how much I should be able to accomplish.
Also btw, I wonder if you are knocking yourself a lot for using a language that is not perceived as exciting and modern as others. A lot of places use java. Twitter, google, amazon - they use java. They manage to do competent things despite having java in their technology stacks. You don’t have ot stick with java, but if you do, you are not an idiot for that choice.