Ask HN: How can I make a career change now? What options are available?

So I’m pretty confident at this point that my career is dead. At the very least it’s on the path to death.

But at the moment I feel completely stuck. I know I need to do something, but I don’t see any path that requires a lot of money I don’t have. I lack any formal education outside of a high school diploma.

There’s no way on earth I can afford to formal education to move myself towards a different career ant the moment and everything is rapidly getting more expensive, most notably rent. Recently, I’ve watched many friends who are educated, and have more typical white collar office jobs struggle to find places they can afford.

It’s entirely possible though, that there are options I don’t know of. I got into programming by teaching myself from a young age out of my own interest (in fact, I never had any career aspirations in software until I was an adult). I don’t know if there’s any other careers like that, where I can just learn and work in my free time and eventually get myself to a point where employers will be willing to hire me.

But I imagine there’s paths I’m just completely ignorant of. Things I’ve never even seen or thought of, and I suppose that’s what I’m asking for. What options are available to me that I may not even know of?

And for what it’s worth, no I don’t have anyone I can mooch off of for some time while I try to figure things out. There are also other circumstances in my life that make it very difficult if not impossible to take many of the more manual jobs I see. These are not impossible to overcome, but require time and money I don’t have right now. It really feels like I’m consumed by chicken/egg problems right now. I could give up, take a low/unskilled job, and that might cover my base living expenses for a time, and I have considered it, but that’s game over. At that point I’ll never be able to afford a decent career change in a reasonable time frame.