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Returning to work/being at work/coping with work?

(6 Posts)
BreastmilkDoesAFabLatte Fri 05-Jul-13 07:59:33

Yes, my return to work went well. My line manager was very thoughtful and discreet about allowing me to phase back into the various aspects in a manageable way, and that was brilliant. A few years back I was off work for a similar length of time for medical issues and allowed work to insist I came back FT immediately, this time was just so much less stressful - even though I hadn't been so anxious about it.

What are the craft projects you're working on?

ThisKnifeitDoesNotCutDeepEnoug Thu 04-Jul-13 20:42:07

Thanks Breastmilk, have only just seen your reply, and you are right, the ED is complicating/making things worse. I do have some hobby type things I have been doing which are helpful but almost all include an aspect of exercise which I start to view in eating disordered ways. Although I do have a craft project sort of on the go (and bloody Candy Crush!).

I now have an appointment with occupational health next week, and hadn't considered the Union being able to help but actually that is a really good idea to at least make contact because they cover all of my roles whereas occupational health will only be about one (I wish I wasn't so paranoid and could be more specific!).

But thank you! Did your return to work go okay?

BreastmilkDoesAFabLatte Wed 03-Jul-13 10:53:49

I spend six weeks signed off with anxiety earlier this year. Like you (I'm also going to be deliberately vague here!) my job has different aspects, some more stressful than others.

"Also, I don't know really whether doing fuck all, all day every day is really for the best. It isn't really fuck all, I have been going running and stuff to try and actually have an eating disorder and be actual thin for once, rather than just a fat bulimic."

To me, that really rings rather deafening alarm bells. It sounds to me as though you urgently need some structure to your days to stop you "running and stuff". Worsening your eating disorder will only make everything worse, and I'm sure you know that!

"I want to try and change my note to a 'may be fit for work' so I can do a phased return"

If you could get the GP to do that, is there anyone at work (ie line manager, HR, Occ Health?) you would be supportive in helping you plan a phased return? Is there any way you could do the first bit of your job without the second for a few weeks/months? If they're not helpful, you could try a union, if you have one, or Citizen's Advice. Alternatively... is there anything else you could find for yourself to be doing with your time off? Do you have any non-exercise, non-food hobbies (gardening, sewing etc) that you could focus on, or do you think you'd be able to volunteer somewhere on a short-term basis?

ThisKnifeitDoesNotCutDeepEnoug Sun 30-Jun-13 07:16:10

Thank you, in as vague a way as I can say, I have two roles, one I am okay with returning too but requires a mental ability that the diazepam is interfering with!
The other is a role where I am under more scrutiny, which as you say can really contribute to anxiety, and there can also be a generally bad atmosphere there (everyone moaning non stop about everything, then bitching, then moaning some more, with calorie counting often talked about to mess with my head some more!). However i usually get by with it. This is where I was though when I had my first panic attack which was awful and although I know there are other things that caused it, I am worried about going back because of what happened last time even without the other stuff!
This job fits in so well with my other (main) role, and is financially necessary so I am going to have to manage somehow!

AgentZigzag Sun 30-Jun-13 02:48:27

I'm afraid I don't have any experience of testing out going back to work (I was too scared to go back, so you're a far braver person than I was for even considering it), but your OP made me come out in a cold sweat so I know how panicky work can make you feel.

If your work makes you feel so crap, is there any middle ground between going back and not having anything as a focus every day?

Either another job, or something where you don't feel under so much pressure?

What is is about the job that freaks you out?

If it's other people, can you look at working with less around you?

If it's having to behave in a certain way (which I have trouble with, feeling I'm constantly under a microscope and anything out of the norm will expose the 'real' me to anyone around me) at a certain time (can make you feel trapped) is there anything more flexible, like working for yourself?

Options are good, there must be something which will make you feel fulfilled and challenged, at the same time as realistically accepting yourself as you are and not how others think you should be.

If that makes sense? grin

ThisKnifeitDoesNotCutDeepEnoug Sat 29-Jun-13 20:34:59

Name changed again although I posted when this first happened with a different name change from my standard MN one! (and I didn't even spell this one right, oh well).

I had a massive panic attack at work and have been off since (over a month now), still v. anxious and having occasional but lessening panic attacks. Also having an eating disorder relapse which the panic is both contributing to and is made worse by. I am back on fluoxetine, have got myself mildly (I hope only mildly!) dependent on diazepam, and have tried beta blockers but really didn't get on with them.

Yesterday the GP signed me off for a whole month. Due to the nature of my job this is really not good in terms of money, return time, and other stuff (being deliberately vague to not out myself). Also, I don't know really whether doing fuck all, all day every day is really for the best. It isn't really fuck all, I have been going running and stuff to try and actually have an eating disorder and be actual thin for once, rather than just a fat bulimic.

Work say I can't go back while I'm signed off legally. I want to try and change my note to a 'may be fit for work' so I can do a phased return.

Anyone got any experience relating to going back to work after time off for anything like this I would like to know! I am worried about lots of things and that worry is only going to increase the longer I am away I think!

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