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Update-PTSD/Anxiety/Depression referral to occupational health

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Lunalady, Apr 8, 2019.

  1. Lunalady

    Lunalady New commenter

    HI there,

    So i have been off work for about 3 weeks, it is not the Easter holidays and technically signed off til tomorrow which will be end of 4th week. I have an occupational health appointment coming up. I don't feel i am anywhere near ready to return and not sure if i will be by end of year..but I want to try to return at some point. I know i get 6 months full pay and 6 months half pay.

    What can I expect from Occ' Health? Will they be supportive of my issues, what should I tell them, what shouldn't I tell them? I'm under the view that I need to tell them everything I have gone through over the years and also most recently at work, so they can get a real picture of where I am.

    I know looking at me and talking to me I may seem ok...last time I went to the doctor he said I seemed better, but after talking to Talking Therapies they diagnosed me with having moderate to severe depression and similar with anxiety after answering the questionnaires they use.

    I've not yet started any counselling and my meds haven't kicked in properly yet. I feel that I need to try and work through some of the issues I have and get over some of the trauma I have experienced.

    The best way to describe things are that a number of weeks ago my glass totally smashed due to years of traumatic and stressful personal issues that were totally compounded by some extremely stressful work situations and environments....my glass is slowly being put back together but I am finding that it gets full very quickly and it doesn't take much for it to spill over. I want to be in a position where I feel able to deal with the work I do...I work with EBD and SEND with a very tricky cohort and am in no way able to cope with the demands of it at the moment.

    I am considering leaving my role to totally start again (jury is still out on that at the moment) but am trying to weigh up pros and cons of it all. I have been thinking if I do decide to leave, when should I hand my notice in? This is up for deliberation as I don't want to leave my school high and dry by resigning and not leaving them time to find a replacement, but I also need to think about what is best for me financially and mentally. My husband thinks I should stay off for the rest of the academic year and hand my notice in at the end of term securing a pay check at the end of August. He feels they have treated me disgracefully and have nothing to lose. I am not sure if I feel comfortable doing this as it would really shoot them in the foot and looks quite bad.

    Any advice/opinions much appreciated.
  2. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    I am with your husband.
  3. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Leave them high and dry?

    What do you think supply agencies are for???!!!!!

    You are not God's gift to EBD and SEND. Not even when you're on top form. Nobody is. We come and we go. I'm very willing to believe that @HelenREMfan was the bee's knees and the cat's pyjamas of the PE world. But sport in the North West and environs is probably limping along without her.

    Take all the time you need. No rush. Whatever you do? Pack in that nonsense about leaving school high and dry. That's ego. We all have it. We all do it. But sometimes it's not useful. It's not helping you now. OK, we give ourselves a pep talk at the start of September about how good we are and what we're going to achieve but now is not the time to be a super-hero.

    Your husband lives with you. He's not telling you to keep at it for the sake of the income (which anyone could easily do). No. He can see the truth. Listen to him.
  4. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I don't think you should do anything at all about resigning or not for quite some time. You've been off for only four weeks, that is not very long at all. The tablets aren't yet working and you've not started counselling. Do not make life changing decisions until you are in a better place. If you are sure about your sick pay entitlement, even if your GP signs you off for the next six months, you don't need to resign until the end of October to leave at Christmas...if you can manage on a few months of half pay.

    Go and see OH and tell them everything.
    Sort out the counselling and tell them everything.
    Wait a couple of months for the drugs to kick in.
    Then decide in about August how you feel about going back in September and talk to your GP about that.
  5. mothergoose2013

    mothergoose2013 Occasional commenter

    Me too, with the caveat that you may well be too ill to decide anything just now, give things a little more time.

    With regard to occupational health I found them very supportive. I would be tempted to focus on the work related things and their impact upon you as an individual and save most of the personal / past for a therapist /counsellor for the time being though. You should get the chance to see and approve the report before it goes to school too which takes the edge off.

    I wouldn't worry too much about inconveniencing the school, take time to decide what's right for you and then go with that.

    Very best wishes xx
  6. Over_the_hill

    Over_the_hill Star commenter

    I also found the lady from Occupational Health very supportive. She listened and sympathised and offered practical advice. She filled out the form to the school while I was with her to make sure it was all agreed and without going into details she worded it carefully so it was in my best interests. Just be honest. Don’t make any rash decisions. It will be at least four weeks before your meds kick in. Keep posting, there are many of us on here who have been through similar. Sending you a cyber hug. X
  7. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    You mention they have treated you terribly. My advice would be to contact your Union about this. I also echo do not resign. If you walk away you have little scope for holding your employer to account for wrong doings.
  8. HolyMahogany

    HolyMahogany Senior commenter

    This is excellent advice - right now you may not be thinking straight and making big decisions is something you should try to postpone until you are much, much further along the road to recovery. Ideally do not make any decisions until you feel you are fully recovered.
    There is a reason you get 6 months on full pay for being ill - because you deserve and are entitled to it, you didn't set out to be ill and you have a right to get better with out adding money worries to the issue.
  9. Lunalady

    Lunalady New commenter

    Thank you for your advice. Some of it is really helpful. I think its guilt, and paranoia of handing my notice in after they break up. I feel it is cowardly and a bit selfish in a way. I believe in the work, and have been in the role a long time. I think there is part of me that is scared to go and regret it....but I don't think it is conducive to my mental health at the moment. Quite a lot of triggers for me.

    Due to go to Occ health tomorrow, so will see what they say.
  10. Over_the_hill

    Over_the_hill Star commenter

    Good luck for your appointment today! X
    agathamorse likes this.
  11. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    if other people in the past hadn't taken it on themselves to prop of a rotten system, you most likely wouldn't have been in this position in the first place.

    likewise, your compulsion not to leave the school "high and dry" is silly, self indulgent and further propping up the rot, which will impact on other individuals after you.

    Leave them "high and dry". If they struggle, GOOD! unfortunately it is more likely that they will simply find another martyr to sacrifice.

    Resign, for goodness sake. Would you stay in an abusive relationship with a man? No? why do so many strong independent women who wouldn't let a man abuse them, allow an SMT to?
    agathamorse and Mrsmumbles like this.
  12. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    no, it is cowardly and selfish to allow them to get away with it
    agathamorse and Mrsmumbles like this.
  13. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    Me too! Trust me, they will not be as bothered about you as you are about them and your students, so schod em. If you do not allow yourself full time to heal, you will struggle to go back to any work. It is the old school Stockholm syndrome SLT guillt-trip-bullying - me thing again, I’m afraid. Work your way through as many Netflix boxsets as you want!
  14. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    If you think there are triggers, just leave. I had exactly this problem. With me, b6 the end, half the department were triggers! All the SLT. Rooms where a lot of the bullying happened. It went on for five years and made me very very ill. Even if you convince your brain that Teacher Can Take It, what usually happens is that your body has very different ideas. I wish someone had told me that back in 2011. Sometimes teachers who are obviously good and do not, understandably, want to leave their schools forget that it is not so much about whether or not they can afford to quit; in 2019, it’s more like whether or not they can afford to stay.
    agathamorse likes this.

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