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Mental Health stigma

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by justbrowsing, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. I am currently recovering from an episode of clinical depression which has involved time out of school and treatment.(essentially CBT with trained professionals).
    I am now preparing for my return to work and am aware that I am likely to be asked about my absence and am considering my responses. The stigma of mental health is such that I dont want to hide my illness and yet I dont want to proclaim to all and sundry either. What would be an acceptable repsonse to any questions I might be asked?
    Not sure I have explained this very well at all, sorry!
     
  2. I am currently recovering from an episode of clinical depression which has involved time out of school and treatment.(essentially CBT with trained professionals).
    I am now preparing for my return to work and am aware that I am likely to be asked about my absence and am considering my responses. The stigma of mental health is such that I dont want to hide my illness and yet I dont want to proclaim to all and sundry either. What would be an acceptable repsonse to any questions I might be asked?
    Not sure I have explained this very well at all, sorry!
     
  3. lilykitty

    lilykitty New commenter

    Hi
    I'm in a very similar position (not yet ready to return to work, but getting there). I know that the staff all know why I have been off and think most of the parents don't know, although I'm sure some must have heard. I'm hoping I'll be able to keep things to a "really glad to be feeling better, need to make sure I don't over do it" vagueness, as although I know parents esp. might want to know where I've been, I'm hoping they won't ask outright!
    Not sure what I'll say to the children though, as they are more likely to go for the "So what was wrong with you?" jugular!
    Would be interested to see how other people handled this, and good luck!
     
  4. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    "I was in hospital, and it took me longer than expected to get better" works with lots of children.
    or
    "I was surfing, and got bitten by a shark! Did you see it on the news? No? Ah well you should watch the news because then you'd know about these things!" (i.e. lie and then distract)
     
  5. There's an advertising campaign at the moment about how to approach colleagues who have been off with depression.
    In our school, that's so many of them that the favourite topic of staffroom conversation is brand of antidepressant.
    If people feel comfortable enough to ask you how you're feeling, you have the same choice as the rest of us: fine thanks, whether you are or not, or a longer and more accurate statement. Only you know which is appropriate to the occasion.
    If high-school age kids asked me why i had been off, I said "Women's troubles" and they enquired no further. [​IMG]
     

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