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Someone help me, I cant take anymore

(37 Posts)

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bluetattythrow Fri 25-Nov-16 12:50:32

I've got myself into a complete state financially, mentally and physically and I'm really not sure what to do. I feel trapped and I don't know a way out. I have thought about ending it all, but it wouldn't be fair on DCs or the rest of my family, but I can't see a way out. I'm definitely dragging them down.
I work in a job that takes years of study, and expense, and used to enjoy it. Then the place I worked at closed and every place was only offering commission-only work with no basic salary. I tried to career change and no one was interested, my cv and study is solely based on the role that I am in and I needed to get back into work quickly and so accepted a commission only role. It was such a huge mistake.
When a job is finished it can take between 3 months to 12 months, sometimes longer, for the work to be paid for, ie I was paid £300 this month for a job from 2015.
Some months I would earn £1300 full time and most months absolutely nothing regardless of the amount of hours that I'd put in, but I was told that it would go up and that things were going to get busier.
Then after a while a new contract meant that the commission I was paid went down from 50% to 25% due to financial changes at the company, meaning that for the same amount of work and hours I would earn at most £650 (FT) and often nothing. I still wait months to get that money, and it's never going to be any siginificant amount.
I am often told by the boss, who I'm scared of, that we must do mates rates for his friends, so some jobs I will go down from it being worth 1300 on my old commission basis, to 650 on the new basis, to just £200 because I have to do "mates rates"

I have earned £3000 this whole year for my work, and some days have worked from 9am to 2am the next morning. I have protested that I am not even covering my own expenses, travel etc, and that I cannot afford to pay my bills or buy essentials (or things that I call "essential" such as contact lenses, new glasses, winter coat, lunches etc) My mobile phone has been cut off (I am supposed to use my own mobile to call customers as we are not allowed to call mobiles from the office phone, but I now can't do that and it's making work even harder), which is no doubt affecting my credit rating and the bank has referred my £300 overdraft to debt collectors as they have seemingly worked out that I can't even pay back a measley £300. Which is true. I dont have £300 (when I used the overdraft I didn't know that my commission rate was going to be halved and I didnt use £300 that is £300 incl charges).
I dont even have £10 in the bank so cant even make a cash withdrawal.
I keep telling work that I need to be paid more or I have to leave, but they feel that I am committed to on-going jobs and cannot leave; they suggest that my dh should support me. He is trying his best with me and the DCs, but he cannot afford to do more than the rent, council tax and his and the dcs expenses. He cannot pay my mobile phone bill, give me money for glasses, or make up, or clothes etc. He isn't on great money (below national average) we never expected his salary to support us, we need two incomes, we both have to be earning and I'm more than letting the side down.

There is a recent job that I should have been paid £650 for but was paid £200 (one of these mates rates). I made an error on the job, my first serious one in my career, and I feel absolutely terrible. It remains to be seen as to whether it will have a financial impact on the customer, I'm hoping and praying that it doesn't and just can't stop thinking about it. The supervisor had overall responsibility but doesn't want to discuss it with the customer so I have had to deal with it all myself. I feel very scared and at my previous company was attacked by a customer, and was attacked at university by someone who I considered a friend, so I do get generally really nervous around agitated people. I know that it was my mistake, but there is supposed to be a whole complaints procedure and ways of dealing with these things. Everyone has washed their hands as they find the customer difficult, and has left me to deal with it. I'm genuinely really scared, and havent been sleeping or eating. My dh and family consider that it is a lot to be dealing with for £200. My DH calls it 'risk and reward' and just keeps saying that the 'reward' for doing the job just isn't worth the 'risk'.

My GP has signed me off sick on the basis that I am at immediate risk of a stroke (long medical history) but work have needed me in so I have tried to just get on with it. However, I am becoming more and more physically ill with severe headaches and dizziness and I think mentally unwell too. I can't stop shaking and crying all the time and I dont know a way out. This has made me start thinking about the customer that attacked me at the previous job and what happened at uni, and I know that's my fault, not this new customer (who has every right to be annoyed) but I'm a nervous wreck.

I'm thinking of all kinds of conspiracy theories, such as the guy at uni was he asked to attack me by my ex boyfriend as he stopped when his phone rang and the phone call was from my ex. I always thought that it was a huge coincidence and that my ex had unwittingly saved me from being raped. But now I've started to wonder, as he hated me so much and had some really strange ideas about women which he claimed were normal and cultural but were not part of any culture, he was just an idiot , whether he set the whole thing up. There's no way of finding out and I don't know why I am making up conspiracy theories, I just feel like my mind is swirling thinking about 50000 things at once all of the time. I think I'm losing my mind.

I had to take today off as dc isn't well and DH wouldnt have the day off because, as he rightfully says, it isn't worth letting his employer down when his employer pays him a monthly salary, and we need that salary to survive. That is what is keeping our heads above water. Work were really funny about it, and I am worried that they think I am avoiding the customer. But my dc genuinely went to the GP yesterday and genuinely is ill. I do not take sick days, and thank goodness dc are not frequently ill, I am not one of those people who is looking for any excuse for a day off. If I can't come in it is genuine, I have never pulled a sickie and my attendance is really good.
I obviously want to, and need to, leave my job as I need to earn money. I have been trying to go since August, there isn't a month that passes that I dont try to give notice and I have requested meetings, but they just keep saying that there is no one else to take on my existing work so I would be leaving customers, and them, in the lurch. The work I have could be ongoing until spring and I dont know how to survive until then.
The debt collectors are calling, customers are calling, work rings me at 10pm (it's supposed to be a 9-5.30 job) and all for no money. It's getting to the point where I am scared of my phone! Every time it makes a noise I just think who is this? who do I owe money to now? What new job do I have to do for two hundred quid? Same with the post.
Last month I was paid nothing at all. This month I was paid £300 from a job from over a year ago. Doesn't even cover train fare. I can't go on and Im not allowed to leave.
I dont know a way out of this. I am scared of my boss, of the customers, of everyone and I dont know how to get away from any of them.

cheekyfunkymonkey Fri 25-Nov-16 12:54:51

I'm not sure what you do but it doesn't sound like it's doing you any good at all. No job is worth your mental health

mumonashoestring Fri 25-Nov-16 12:55:18

Right - loads of people on here who can advise you about benefits etc. What I would say is, give notice in writing and don't discuss it. Send it by recorded delivery if necessary but as long as you're complying with your contractual notice period, they can't 'refuse' to accept it.

Also, contact StepChange or a similar debt charity about the financial stuff - they can help you agree holds, pauses or reductions on repayments to get you back on track.

LIZS Fri 25-Nov-16 12:55:26

What sort of a job is it if commission only , pyramid selling? Why can't you leave? Have you been paying tax and NI? Speak to Stepchange re. Debts and finances ASAP.

mumonashoestring Fri 25-Nov-16 12:57:35

Oh, and balls to you leaving them in the lurch - if they'd listened to your concerns, helped, or accepted your resignation then started working properly on replacing you they'd not be in as much trouble as they're in.

Sounds to me like they're taking advantage, massively.

CockacidalManiac Fri 25-Nov-16 12:58:07

* obviously want to, and need to, leave my job as I need to earn money. I have been trying to go since August, there isn't a month that passes that I dont try to give notice and I have requested meetings, but they just keep saying that there is no one else to take on my existing work so I would be leaving customers, and them, in the lurch. The work I have could be ongoing until spring and I dont know how to survive until then.*

Tough shit for the firm, really. You're entitled to give notice; you're not an slave, you're an employee.
Your GP has evaluated your medical history and decided that you shouldn't be at work.
It's seriously affecting your MH too.

Bluntness100 Fri 25-Nov-16 12:58:08

Ah jeez. You need to find a new job , have you been applying? And you need to quit this one because they are abusing you, there is no reason for them not to pay you. They are taking the piss.

And lastly you need to force yourself not to think about the past, move forward.

First off, start applying for new jobs, if uou need to stay in this one and get paid, but you cannot be working for nothing. It's ridiculous.

CockacidalManiac Fri 25-Nov-16 12:58:45

Deal with things step by step, so it doesn't overwhelm you.

bluetattythrow Fri 25-Nov-16 13:01:00

Thank you for your responses.
Yes I pay tax and NI
I don't do pyramid selling. Or any sales work, I've never worked in sales.
We aren't claiming any benefits. Someone told me that we wouldnt be eligible for tax credits or anything else. We do get child benefit for the two dc.

CockacidalManiac Fri 25-Nov-16 13:02:00

You know that the only thing that you can't do is to carry on like this.

GrabtharsHammer Fri 25-Nov-16 13:06:28

This is easily sorted.

Email them your notice. If they say you can't leave just email them the same email. Leave on your last day. You are not a slave!

Even working in your local shop would earn you more than you are earning now and your life would be immeasurably improved.

You can change this. They aren't allowed to refuse your notice by the way!

GrabtharsHammer Fri 25-Nov-16 13:07:35

How much does your DH earn? If it's less than the national average then it does sound as though you should get tax credits.

tallwivglasses Fri 25-Nov-16 13:07:49

How awful for you. You owe nothing to your boss. Call ACAS. Get some councelling to help you look at each individual problem then it won't seem so overwhelming. If you're on the sick you should not be working! Look at what you can temporarily cut back on or change providers. Get your husband/family/friends onside. And your boss can stick his mates rates up his arse. It all seems hopeless now but get a plan and it will get better flowers

mumonashoestring Fri 25-Nov-16 13:09:14

Okay, so baby steps, and you don't have to do all this today. Whilst you're off, switch off your work phone. Write your resignation letter - this doesn't need to say any more than the basics (I hereby give notice as required in my contract, my employment with your company will end on x date).

Ring StepChange and see if they can advise on getting your debts put on hold.

Ring Citizens Advice Bureau and ask for advice on available benefits.

Are there any specialist agencies that deal with roles in your industry/area? They should at least have some good ideas about who is a reputable employer. I'd say as you're not being paid properly now, give notice, let yourself start recovering from the shower of shitbags you're currently working with, then start jobhunting. Even if you do a bit of temping or, Christ, even get a job in Sainsburys over Christmas, you'll be getting a regular wage and not being abused for asking for that as a bare minimum.

Clandestino Fri 25-Nov-16 13:14:48

Why can't you leave? Of course you can leave. Looks like you'd be much better off leaving, tbh.
With the way you are getting paid, would this be a case of reporting your employer to the Revenue? I find it difficult to believe that your employment conditions are legal.

user1471950254 Fri 25-Nov-16 13:15:40

You are dealing with a lot so as other PPs have said you just need to break down the issues

1. Quit today by email. The job sounds awful and you are being treated badly, as you said you're not even earning enough to cover train fees etc
2. Go back to your GP and explain you were offered a line last time due to risk of stroke. Explain the pressure you feel mentally right now & get signed off ideally for your full notice period so you do not need to return to work. Ask to be referred to counselling
3. Apologies I'm clueless re benefits etc but have heard great things about Step Change on this forum so I'm sure you'll find them helpful. Sites like Money Saving Expert may give you some ideas for budgeting/saving money too.
4. Update your CV, upload it to relevant websites and if you have any contacts drop them an email to say you are looking for a salaried role. Look at something out with your industry to get you into immediate paid work

Speak to your Dh I am unclear if they are aware just how awful you are feeling right now. Sending you a massive hug & try to focus on the now/future step by step.

Massive hugs flowersflowersflowers.

CuthbertDibble Fri 25-Nov-16 13:21:31

Your employer should still be paying you minimum wage if you are working the hours, I found this via Google:
Where commission-only workers are required to be at work for a fixed or set number of hours per day or week, their work must be treated as "time work", even though their pay is calculated by reference to the number of sales made or deals completed, and they must receive, on average, at least the minimum wage for each hour worked in the pay reference period. Therefore, if the workers' commission over a pay reference period falls below the minimum wage (taking into account any transfer of pay as set out above) based on the number of hours worked, the employer must make up the sum to at least the minimum wage.

I know this doesn't immediately help you but I would be inclined to contact ACAS and find out where you stand. Do you have any holiday owing? Could you give notice and take your notice period as holiday?

bibbitybobbityyhat Fri 25-Nov-16 13:22:14

I think you need to make an urgent appointment with your GP as the stress you are suffering is causing you to be unable to think straight. Tell your dh, ask him to come with you if he possibly can.

Forget everything else and concentrate on your mental health - it is very urgent!

Gazelda Fri 25-Nov-16 13:23:33

The relief you will feel when you leave will be enormous.
The business and the clients will survive without you.
Honestly, send your resignation letter in with your Sick note. Ask your GP to sign you off until a date after your leaving date (according to your contract).
Concentrate on getting your health back and getting financial stability for you and your family - via debt support and benefits advice.
No one deserves or can cope long term with this much stress.

Coffeethrowtrampbitch Fri 25-Nov-16 13:23:34

Write an email to them now giving a week's notice, and don't go back.

You are at risk of a stroke for goodness sake! Your dh and kids need you a hell of a lot more than your horrible employers.

Don't answer the phone and stay at home for a week, unplug the phone if you have to or contact your phone provider and change the number.

Just totally ignore them, they have put your mental and physical health at risk and after you leave you owe them nothing. Block any attempts of theirs to contact you, concentrate on getting well again, and get a new job once you have recovered from the disgraceful way they have treated you.

CockacidalManiac Fri 25-Nov-16 13:24:54

There's some excellent advice here, OP.
Mumsnet at its best.

gamerchick Fri 25-Nov-16 13:25:47

Yeah you need To phone acas and get some law knowledge behind you.

They can't stop you from quitting.

idontlikealdi Fri 25-Nov-16 13:27:17

God you need to get out of this job. Just leave. You can forgo severance / accrued holiday etc but they can't physically make you work your notice.

YetAnotherBeckyMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 25-Nov-16 13:27:48

Hello OP, we are really sorry to hear you are feeling this way.

We hope you don't mind, but when these threads are flagged up to us we usually add a link to our Mental Health resources - here. You can also go to the Samaritans' website here, or email them on jo@samaritans.org. Support from other Mumsnetters is great and we really hope you will be able to take some comfort from your fellow posters, but as other MNers will tell you, it's really a good idea to seek RL help and support as well.

We also like to remind everyone that, although we're awed daily by the astonishing support our members give each other through life's trickier twists and turns, we'd always caution anyone never to give more of themselves to another poster, emotionally or financially, than they can afford to spare.

We are going to move this thread to the Mental Health section shortly.

BastardGoDarkly Fri 25-Nov-16 13:30:20

Leave them in the lurch? They don't give a shiny shite that you can't pay your bills or that you're a physical and emotional wreck!

There's loads of temporary Christmas jobs around, just leave and get one, yes, it really is that simple, do it today flowers

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