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not coping...

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by littlemissnewbie, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. i know i won't be alone in feeling this but the thought of having to enter the school building again is filling me with dread. I haven't been well this year suffering with stress, extreme anxiety and panic attacks that have conpletely taken over my life. I know I can't do a good job in the state that I am in and don't know how I am going to cope. Im thinking of handing my notice in as it looks like I will have to be signed off work again (I had a period of absence already this year) but am worrying that if I cant work my notice this will jeopardise my chances of a reference or a job in the future. so stuck on what to do for the best :-S all I know is I need to put my health first in order to get my life back on track
  2. I think you've answered your own question there. If you go in and can't cope you will be having time off anyway. You might as well tell your GP that you aren't well enough to go back and give the school a chance to get supply in place for the start of term.
    Is it the job generally or the particular school that you are having difficulties with?
  3. Your health comes first and any employer will be sure to see that.
    You should go to your GP about your health concerns. I too was worried about my health a few months ago after also having anxiety and panic attacks for many years, all my life in fact. I was diagnosed with a form of aniexty disorder called Social Phobia which, in terms of school, means that facing people in the staffroom and on training days very scary and panic inducing. By being diagnosed with a my social phobia I am making slow but steady steps to improving my mental state. I also regularly visit a homeopath who has been helping a lot and is an avenue, if you are open to the idea, I would recommend using.
    Part of what has helped me is knowing that the feelings I feel are not unique and there are others who go through it to. I hope I have been of some use or at least comfort!
  4. thanks both...have been to the docs who is generally of the impression that I need to get myself better before returning (if at all, as it may be the school itself). I think I went bk too soon the last time after feeling the pressure of occupational health referrals and absence review meeting etc...
    i have tried all sorts craftyangel, open to anything! but i think trying to rush myself bk to school the last time just didnt give me chance to actually recover and get bk on track.
    what would happen if i resigned now? would i never get a job again? i just think i need to have a break from teaching in order to give me a chance to restore my health and then move on.x

  5. aw27

    aw27 New commenter

    If you can afford to, I would suggest leaving and getting a less stressful job (office work or something) for a while (I say afford to as it pays significantly less - expect to halve your income).
    It wont stop you ever teaching again, you can always do a RTT course and you may discover other opportunities that you prefer to teaching in the long run. I know a number of friends who have resigned posts for similar reasons and gone on to have extremely successful careers at a later date.
    If you stay it is very unlikely to get better if its the school/staff/teaching itself causing your stress as these things are not going to change.
    The worst case scenario is that you end up having a breakdown and you are unable to work <u>at all</u>. This will mean an awkward absence to have to explain to ANY future employer.
    I have discovered that employers are sometimes quite sympathetic to the 'I wanted to reduce my enormous workload and get my life back' explanation, especially if the job involves education in some way as they are aware of the stress levels in teaching.
    Most importantly you MUST think of your health. You may only realise its gone too far when its too late to do anything about it.
    As the old saying goes: Nobody on their death bed says "I wish I'd spent more time at work...!"
  6. If you think you've burned your boats at this school then then of course you should plan to leave. But don't just run away in a panic. Take the time you need now to get properly better. Then go back on a reduced timetable (contact Occupational Health) and see how you go on. If it's clearly not going to work out, then offer your resignation and/or look for a part-time job.
    I don't know what your circumstances are, how much you can afford to drop to, but finding something as well-paid as teaching when that's all you're trained for is difficult. I'm working in the school office now, in a place I used to teach at, but that is compounded of basic laziness and the fact that my husband earns enough to subsidise the massive wage drop. Maybe you could consider cover supervisor or TA roles for a while at least whilst you consider what aspects of the job it is that you find most difficult to cope with.
    It could be that the depression is underlying and only made worse by teaching - that you'd be fine with a teaching job if the underlying disorder were cleared up. But give yourself a chance to get well first. It won't affect your chances of another job either way if you resign now or Easter. Your school will appreciate as much advance notice of your not returning in September as possible though.
  7. I think you are right, I'm just in a mess as I don't know how to sort it out now. Worried that Ive put off making a decision til its too late [​IMG]
  8. I think it might be a signature of the disorder that you will worry whatever you decide!
  9. You'll make it worse for yourself if you try to muddle through without admitting that you are ill, because you won't be able to do the job properly, and you'll get put on capability proceedings, which will damage your career for a long time.

    Don't decide for yourself that you're not going back though, speak to your GP who will make the decision as to whether you are too ill to work. If your school aren't supportive, then you are better off without them.

    I know there is a lot more to think about than that, like how you are going to pay your bills and where you are going to get another job from, but you can't let things like that stop you from looking after yourself properly.
  10. Oh, and I know a few people who have been ill with stress and resigned to take a couple of years off to recover, then went back to a different job. That might work for you.
  11. Thanks, that was my thinking too- I dont want to make myswlf go bk and then b dismissed for capability as surely this will be worse than having to explain to a future employer why i resigned? I Dnt know, there is just no easy answer and I know I'm going to have to deal with it now but the thought of having to let the school know now is so daunting x
  12. lrw22

    lrw22 Established commenter

    Have you considered leaving and doing some supply? I left a job in similar circumstances to you and I am now doing supply. It has given me a chance to teach without all the stress that comes with a permanent teaching job. It's also allowed me to go into lots of different schools and I now have a better idea of what type of school would suit me if I wanted to try and get back into a teaching job. However I wouldn't recommend doing it without researching supply in your area as there are lots of areas where supply work is very thin on the ground these days. It might be worth looking into though.[​IMG]
  13. I am in a very similar position. I do not have a permanent job but have been on supply for 3 years. After a very trying year all round (family health problems, redundancies etc), I kept putting all of my concentration into work. I have had a very successful career so far with HTs requesting me back for work. My problem stems from the way my local authority treat people on supply. I was messed around considerably this year and since starting a fixed term in a lovely school with lovely staff and despite being completely up to date with work, I have been unable to sleep, having panic attacks, hypertension, headaches, shaking, cold sweats, worrying about every little thing that pops into my head. My doctor has signed me off to give my mind a time to relax but I feel unable to. I am worried sick about the implications of leaving a fixed term contract and whether it will stop me getting back into teaching. I am actually worrying myself sick. People around me are surprised as I have always been the conscientious, organised person but I have hit a brick wall. I love my job but don't think full time is good for my health. I don't know what to do. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  14. Possibly in the future, I'm not up to it at the min but would def keep it in mind. can I ask - were u able to work your notice? I'm really concerned as I'm not going to be able to do so x
  15. Lachicarosa - sending a hug as u r not alone! So hard to deal with things while in this frame of mind x
  16. I just don't know what to do. As I said I have has a very successful 3 years but something had to give and unfortunately it is me. all I ever wanted to do was teach and I am scared this will not stop me from teaching in the future.
  17. I am the same, there has never been an issue with my teaching or anything like that and I think it came as a shock to the school and everyone around me when this started all of a sudden, but the more I read the more I realise it is suxh a common thing in this profession for any number of reasons x
  18. lrw22

    lrw22 Established commenter

    I have sent you a personal message Little Miss Newbie x

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