AIBU to get signed off work?(30 Posts)
Bit of background we have been short staffed for over a year. I am in a middle management position in the public sector and have been trying to juggle 3 people's jobs.
I have worked extra hours and Saturday mornings and still can't keep up. I'm exhausted and management hired a locum and then put them in a different part of the service
I'm struggling to eat, sleep and take care of myself. I went to GP last week and started AD's. Work know but haven't offered any extra support. I've been off since Monday with an infection and I've crashed. I'm still in the same clothes I was wearing on Monday. Haven't showered. I'm sleeping for hours. I'm not eating properly either.
Gp offered to sign me off for a month to get my head together. But I feel guilty, and like I'm letting people down. But I can't see how I can carry on like this. AIBU to go off?
Sorry for the long post.
No your not unreasonable you obviously need time to yourself to heal. maybe they'll learn to appreciate you while your gone
There resourcing issue isn't your problem to solve. Get signed off and concentrate on getting better.
You need to put yourself first, they need to realise how much impact the workload has had, maybe ask for 2 weeks initially and then it can always be extended
Thanks I just feel incredibly guilty that I haven't been strong enough to manage. My house is a mess and feel like a robot. I've lost my joy and live in a fog. I can't carry on like this. I guess I just wanted some validation that I'm not being a precious snowflake.
Take the GP advice and get signed off. The one thing you can't change is your colleagues feelings they may feel let down but you can't worry about that.
YANBU take the time, your mental health is worth a huge amount.
Do you feel like you are doing badly at work, or just over loaded? Do you feel it is your fault somehow, or theirs? (obviously it actually is THEIR fault, but how you feel matters). Sometimes the triggers of depression/anxiety aren't the obvious ones....
I think you are being slightly U. Getting signed off will only 'pause' the problem. When you go back nothing will have changed. The only way to solve is to tackle.
I feel like the sheer volume of work is affecting the quality of what I do. It's crisis management every day. I am aware that there are things I have had to react to quickly to avoid a problem. Sheer lack of time but it doesn't sit well with me.
How do I tackle it though? I've spoken to senior management and they are aware of the situation and how I'm feeling and they've done nothing.
I've been depressed before and I don't want to get as bad as I was then. It was scary and a very dark place.
No you are not being a precious snowflake, you have done nothing to feel guilty about. I think most people would struggle in this situation.
Don't worry about work, they will have to deal with it, hopefully they will realise that something has to give and they need to sort out staffing issues.
Take the month off and concentrate on getting well.
Right I have rang the Gp for a telephone appointment later today. I'm going to tell her how I'm feeling and that work haven't offered any extra support. Then I'll see what she says.
Leggit - what a load of nonsense! If she broke her leg would you say the best way to tackle it was to keep on walking on it? Of course not! You would rest the leg to heal it and then start walking gradually. You do the same with mental health issues.
Rarity75 - take the month and don't feel in the slightest bit bad about it. Rest, feed yourself and recharge.
Glad to see that OP. Agree you need to "tackle" but don't think going into work out of a sense of loyalty is the way to do that. Take the month off they've offered you, get some rest, and take care of yourself. You're on ADs but have they offered you CBT or some sort of talking therapy too? I believe you can self refer so look into that too.
Management will do nothing if the work is being done. They don't care about your health. The work is being done.
If you stop doing the work, they will have to act.
I've had to do this with my team. Under huge pressure and working stupid hoursdespite begging for more resources. I made the decision to let one (non patient critical) thing fail, after warning them repeatedly it'd happen due to lack of resource.
Magically more resources appeared.
As long as you continue to do the work it won't change. Make sure you have it all documented in emails
No job is worth your health. Maybe if you're not there for a month then work might finally get its head out of its arse and get in the extra support they should've gotten in months ago.
Take the time off. You deserve it.
Thanks for the advice anatidae I know everywhere is under pressure it's just ridiculous to expect the same results with less resources.
Will look into the CBT I had a lovely CPN last time and I will dig out the stuff she gave me about positive thinking.
;) it was a bit of an epiphany for me... I finally realised that I one woulddo anything while they were getting the work done. And getting it done more cheaply on lower staffing levels.
Solid email chain is vital ;) good luck
I was in this position just over a year ago. Public sector, middle management and juggling too many tasks, lack of staff and resources etc.
You're describing exactly how I felt OP.
GP signed me off for a month. I got so bad that it actually took me a month to be able to leave the house to go to the shop, never mind work. I had never experienced anything like it and as you said, it's a very dark place to be.
I ended up taking a less senior post on my return, just to get me back to some kind of normality. I still get very anxious now despite being on medication.
It was the best thing I did and do you know why?
Because the work environment I left is still the same. My ex colleagues are at breaking point.
And management are still not listening or dealing with the situation
Take the month - then tackle the issue - involve your manager/union/ occupational health - it can't continue
I am currently juggling another persons work and it's killing me - yanbu
It's hard being in the 'management' role because I'm trying to support my staff and taking the brunt of the pressure from above while doing far too much clinically.
I completely get the not leaving the house, I haven't for the last week apart from the school run.
I've considered taking a lower band job too, not sure if I can afford it financially but I am thinking seriously about it.
I suspected you would be an NHS worker. Really hope you take the time off, you need to prioritise your own health
I think you could do with a major off-load as well, so just keep writing it down (here or for yourself somewhere else), maybe try and push for counselling too and just talk to someone about it, get it out. You seem to see that rationally you have been left in the shit but perhaps emotionally it's a different matter as you have expected yourself to cope and it hasn't been that straightforward?
I hope that you feel better soon, take care of yourself.
what a load of nonsense! If she broke her leg would you say the best way to tackle it was to keep on walking on it? Of course not! You would rest the leg to heal it and then start walking gradually. You do the same with mental health issues. well no. What I meant was tackle the issue at work, you know the root cause? I didn't mark just to carry on as is
TBH though, I'm seriously considering leaving the NHS altogether. I've got a lot of friends who work for the private sector, and I know we are fortunate to get paid sick leave in comparison to other sectors, I cant work in the kind of environment it has become these days. So much passing the buck, the blame culture and the ever increasing pressure. Don't get me started on how long it takes to recruit new staff, and that's even when there are funds to recruit.
I would take the time to consider other option OP, because nothing seems to be changing, and I'm seeing this in other directorates too.
You need to do what's best for your health however the only thing I'll add is that it is your decision entirely. The GP is there to advise you. But the decision to be off work is yours, not the GP's. It's very easy to get a sick note from the GP, it is mere guidance though, the decision to be off work and for how long is yours only. Do what's best for you and make sure you write clearly to your employer outlining the issues so that hopefully you do not go back to the same situation.
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