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Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by vomitingvera, Feb 18, 2020.

  1. vomitingvera

    vomitingvera New commenter

    Don’t really know what advice can be given. I seem to have struggled for so long now, around 6 years For the first two years this was due to a previous Head who, after years of a terrifying reign finally went sick and in the end resigned. However, since then I have to some extent continued to struggle somewhat. More recently, this has escalated significantly due to being triggered by a current work situation. I now feel that I have a very definite issue with my mental health - can’t sleep, can’t switch off or relax, the enjoyment has gone.... I currently take medication and put on a front at work to mask how I feel. I need to go back next week as I just can’t be absent again - was off for a few weeks last term and this didn’t go down too well.
  2. letap

    letap Occasional commenter

    Sadly the obvious advice here is to leave teaching - for many it has become a toxic occupation. The job as it is, is not worth the loss of mental/physical health or the destruction of relationships with partners, family, friends etc.
    Most importantly the problem is definitely not you. Not knowing your full circumstances, I get the feeling you have a very tough decision to make.
    FollyFairy, Curae, FormosaRed and 5 others like this.
  3. install

    install Star commenter

    See gp.

    If you are ill and need time off then do not go in. Your health, both physical and mental, is of the utmost importance. It isn't your fault if you are ill so don't let your school ever make you feel guilty.

    Is the medication for anxiety or depression or otherwise? And have you considered Counselling? Do you have life outside of work and a support network?
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
  4. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    It’s weighing up now what you feel is best for you and your future.
    With the right support and/or medication can you see things improving for you?
    With time out to recuperate can you see things improving for you?
    If external factors changed would/ could things improve?
    Only you can make the decision.
    Maybe some counselling whilst you work through what might be best for you?
    Curae and agathamorse like this.
  5. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    If you'd have a terrible accident a few years back and smashed your ankle to pieces...you'd expect there to still be some weakness there. It might have healed and you can generally go about your daily life barely noticing it. But when you suddenly need to run for a bus, walk quickly down a hill, etc you'd notice that all isn't perfect.

    Mental health is no different. You can tick along having largely recovered, but then, when something happens, you realise there is a lingering weakness and it's harder for you to manage than you feel it should be. Just like with the ankle analogy above, you may need to rest for a time or ask for some help.

    Sometimes the 'injury' is such that you can never go back to your life and career before. After the broken ankle scenario, someone may never be able to climb Everest, maybe not even Snowdon. If they were a marathon runner before, they may not be able to return long term. With a mental injury perhaps you can trundle along as a teacher well enough, but not make it to DH or Head, if that's what you used to hope. Or perhaps you need to find something that puts less strain on the old injury.

    Sorry, waffling a bit now.
    What I'd definitely say is that if being ill 'din't go down to well' then you need a new school!
  6. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    This job is making you ill and you are having to take medication to cope with it. As previous posters on this thread have said it's time to move on to another teaching job or leave teaching altogether. Have you thought about the future? Are you going to struggle on for the rest of your career with the devastating, cumulative effects that will have on your health and although you have not mentioned them, what effect is this having on your partner and family - are they suffering from your job as well? As @letap says in post #2, you've got some tough decisions to make if your life and the lives of those who love you are to get better.
    Curae likes this.
  7. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Absolutely this. An improvement often means recognition of what has not improved. You need counselling to help move towards a decision one that can change your life for the better. How long have you been on your meds? You may need more time or indeed further diagnosis.
    Good luck but act soon.
    agathamorse likes this.
  8. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Not waffle but sound detailed advice.
    FollyFairy and agathamorse like this.
  9. vomitingvera

    vomitingvera New commenter

    Thank you for all your replies.
    i have been on medication, for the second time since October. In the past, I had counselling due to my previous Head but have not had any in the last four years.
    I do have a life outside of work although this is mainly centred around my family - I do have my own activity once a week and take my dog out too.
    Yes, I suppose mental health is like a physical injury; I’m ok and then something sets it off again.
    I do realise that I have a decision to make but I know that I need counselling first but I unfortunately cancelled the last appointment I made.
  10. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    It's quite a big step to take up counselling again when you are struggling.so not unusual to cancel. Can you contact them again and explain that you need to rearrange the appointment? If that's not possible, could you try your school's mental well being service if they have one, or the Education Support Partnership?

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