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I can feel the anxiety rising already

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Presleygirl, Dec 29, 2018.

  1. Presleygirl

    Presleygirl Occasional commenter

    Just looking for some advice ... I have been off due to wrs,and I had been a lot better but then I’ve been away from ththe stress.. OH have declared me fit for work, even though I was honest, I did cry etc. But because I’m dealing with the stress , I’m ok to go back. OH wants a phased return but obviouslyreport not been auctioned by work yet. Union says it should be a well being meeting not th review meeting , to decide if formal capability. I was ina new school and down ward spiral after 2 weeks , then definitely after 6. Been tough. I wish I had resigned at half term, but I didn’t. I can feel the sleepless nights creeping in and the weight starting to come off again and it’s the thought of the place feels me with dread. I made the wrong switch.

    Any ideas as to what to do, I’m not rubbish like they made me feel I was just was struggling for a lot of other reasons. I was prepared to learn but not fast enough for them.
    Thanks for reading x
  2. SundaeTrifle

    SundaeTrifle Occasional commenter

    Do what you need to do to keep yourself well. By mutual agreement the school may be willing to release you from your contract and then you could sign up with a few agencies and gain some experience in different schools.

    Escape from the current toxic environment may be what your mental health needs. If you have coped well in a previous workplace then hold onto that thought, that you are capable of succeeding.
  3. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Star commenter

    Excellent advice from sundaetrifle - if you have the option to get out and do some supply, that would seem like a good option. If you do go back, it should definitely be on a phased return. Your health and well-being are the most important thing here. I wish you well x
  4. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Hi Presleygirl,
    Sorry to hear you're in a nasty place. 5 years ago, I was in a pretty grotty situation. Resigning forced me to look at different options.
    At the moment, you can only see your current school as a source of stress and being off gives you a chance to live freely but not really address that,
    Make sure that you have union back up in meetings - if you can't have a union person, take someone else, just to listen, make notes and see things through an unstressed perspective.
    If you have been off, it may well be that your head will negotiate an earlier departure than Easter - but do give them a chance to address your well-being.
    Medium term though, get polishing that CV.
    May 2019 bring an improvement to your life and career (in that order).
  5. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Sorry to hear of your experiences just to add that I agree a change is needed but carefully look at your financial standing and try to get the best deal ...use union advice.
    Good luck for a fresh new start in 2019.
    God bless
    Curae xx
  6. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    If the stress is building up again then see a doctor before term starts, this will basically be a second opinion on that of OH. There is brilliant advice above but it is still asking you to make a decision when you're not necessarily fit to make it. Ideally you will only make a binding long-term decision when you have spent a few days back at the current hell-hole!

    Of course if you can never set foot inside the building again (I now have 2 schools that need to be avoided for my mental health) then you will have to make a decision anyway but I don't think you're are that stage yet *

    Easy to say as well but don't worry about support/capability or whatever. You need to be in the building for this to be an issue and the school can't use it as a stick on you given your current health.

    All the Best whatever happens.

    *keyboard diagnoses are easy, I should be a virtual doctor;)
  7. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    Ditto but only 3/4 yearas ago
    agathamorse and (deleted member) like this.
  8. lrw22

    lrw22 Senior commenter

    I think you should definitely see your GP as soon as you possibly can. You need their opinion as to whether you are fit for work or not. Look after yourself and try to relax and get some rest. At some point in the future, this will be sorted and things will start to get better.
  9. JosieWhitehead

    JosieWhitehead Star commenter

    Your health comes first. Get a job that releases you from the things which are causing you strain and stress because obviously the classroom does this. The way your health is now will affect you even more so as you get older.
  10. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    I am sorry for your situation. You say you wish you had resigned at half term but no one can make you go back. It is your choice. You can resign with immediate effect if that is what you wish to do. The school are very unlikely to take action against you for this. However I would caution against resigning. You are ill and you need to get better before you make big decisions as stress can cloud your thinking.
    I agree with irw22 that you should see your GP, tell them how you are feeling and ask for a further sick note. Use the time to get better and to get a plan B in place whilst you are still being paid. You are entitled to sick pay when you are Ill.
    If your school have behaved badly towards you, which it sounds like you feel they have, then speak to your Union about what your options are if you want to challenge this.
  11. ATfan

    ATfan Star commenter

    I agree with @JohnJCazorla Go back to your GP and explain what's happened as you explained to us and say that you feel too anxious to meet with the school about going back to work even though OH has said that you are fit to work. I must say though that I am surprised that OH feels qualified to make this judgement about you as I thought the role of OH was to support you in returning to work not deciding when it should happen. Surely that is a matter for you and your GP to decide? Anyway, I would talk to your GP and follow his/her advice on this. I suspect that he or she will either reassure you and all will be well or sign you off for a further period (I'm no expert but based on my own experience, you sound like you need further time off).

    Hope this helps and that things get better for you!
  12. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    You need to leave teaching - you're done.
  13. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    OH have declared you fit for work, have they?

    That's not THEIR flamin' JOB.

    GP. Take it from there. You just need to get to half-term and resign. And the GP may sign you off for much of that. You won't know until you go!
    Shedman, hfromh, agathamorse and 6 others like this.
  14. ATfan

    ATfan Star commenter

    Glad that you share my concern! @grumpydogwoman
  15. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    A much needed and useful one you have been
  16. crawshawn

    crawshawn New commenter

    There is life after teaching. I love my job now after changing careers. Teachers seem to think it’s normal to deal with the stresses and volumes of work that are typical of the profession. It isn’t normal. A happy home life is the most important thing!
  17. cornflake

    cornflake Senior commenter

    to the OP.
    I'm going to say that it is entirely normal to feel anxious in your situation.
    From what I gather, you started a new post in September, and you found it hard to adapt to the new context? That too - entirely normal.
    You then were signed off from work because of stress, and now you are scheduled to re-start your job in January.

    It is, of course, possible that you are not well enough to return yet, and a trip to the GP would confirm that either way.
    Alternatively, the anxiety you feel now is not related to the WRS, but simply because of the unknown.
    I'm just guessing.

    Starting a phased return would enable it to be clearer as to which it is.
    I cannot see how your school can have any evidence of your capability (good or bad) in such a short time scale - and so any hint of that should be swiftly rebutted by your union.
    Yes, there should be a return to work meeting - to discuss and agree the phased return details. And actually, although I think the HT should have indicated when they expect this meeting to happen (so you had no anxiety about it) e.g. I will meet you on Monday 11-12 ... that will be your first day at work and I expect you to go home afterwards... perhaps (being kind) they were not expecting you to attend such a meeting before your first day. I don't know.

    You might want to think about a change of school, or even a change of career - but actually right now, the anxiety you need help to overcome is in relation to returning to work next week. The rest can wait.

    The worst case? You start the phased return, and find that the anxiety cripples you. Then it would be a case of returning to the GP and taking advice. It maybe that a further period of sick leave is required. It maybe that you explore other options such as being released from your contract and going on supply. However, neither option is something you need to think about right now.

    Your first step is a discussion with the GP about whether you are fit to return; and then if so, contact the HT and ask them to confirm the phased return details/time of meeting to discuss these...

    Please take care. As a fellow sufferer of anxiety (and HT) I know how difficult it can be.
  18. Presleygirl

    Presleygirl Occasional commenter

    Thank you for this, I am driving myself mad with this situation. It’s affecting home. It’s crazy as I was looking for a new challenge and what I got was a whole load of heartache. I’m trying to look after myself, but I’m doing the classic buy things to make me feel better usually gifts for others..... and that just adds to guilt of not being in work. I keep thinking of planning but it was all wrong before, so why would it be right now, if I couldn’t do it before why can I now? It’s really silly but ...... I have no confidence at all. I do speak to a counsellor, it helps.
    I know I need to get to work ....... for sanity to see people, but I know that this place is not good, at all. Double edged sword, I can’t apply for posts either. I hate being in limbo!
  19. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    2 things.

    1 How do you assess your work? Were you disappointed in yourself? Were you a poor people-manager? Poor at paperwork? Kids not learning? Bad behaviour? How far were you from achieving what YOU thought you should be achieving? Your planning was poor? So does that mean the kids were unruly and not learning? That's what poor planning means to me. Like a military operation. If you don't plan it well then your soldiers get slaughtered and your country gets overrun. So what disastrous impact did your poor planning have on students? Exactly what effect, please!
    2 Why can't you apply elsewhere?
  20. lrw22

    lrw22 Senior commenter

    Or was your planning actually effective but not in the format and with the features slt expected to see?
    grumpydogwoman likes this.

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