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Previous mental health stuff- shoud I tell the parents?

(10 Posts)
jendifa Sun 14-Nov-10 12:54:34

Just wondering, from a parents point of view, what I should do.

I was a nanny to one family for 4 years and left to train to be a teacher. Had to give up the teacher training though due to depression/post traumatic stress disorder/eating disorders/general anxiety rubbish.

It's now been a year since I was properly ill with it, am on medication and therapists etc beleive all is okay. I'm now looking for jobs nannying/governess-ing and have an interview on Thursday.

Should I tell the parents that I have had this in the past? Should I tell them I'm still on anti-ds? Or just not say anything?

BookcaseFullofBooks Sun 14-Nov-10 12:59:51

Personally, I used to tell the parents. At least then you have been open. If they're not worried then you haven't lost anything and if they are, they would be the sort of people who would be angry if you'd kept it from them too iyswim.

frakkinup Sun 14-Nov-10 13:20:06

I would tell them about medication, especially for governess jobs if looking overseas as some families can be very hmm about any kind of medication. Those are often the kind that insist you have a medical before starting and it would come out then. For others you might need a medical for health insurance so if you're on medication and they're paying, regardless of what it is, they need to know.

The MH issues, if it's under control, I wouldn't disclose. As long as you can do the job which will probably include eating with your charges, being in stressful situations and getting out and about then it's none of their business. You might get asked why you gave up teacher training though and then admitting you had some problems/PTSD but have dealt with them would be better than ummimg and erring and looking shifty.

I would however get an occupational fitness letter of some kind from your doctor. The reasons for disclosure are purely about the medication and your capacity to do the job. If you have evidence from a medical professional saying that the medication doesn't interfere with your ability then they have no reason to say you held anything back.

nannynick Sun 14-Nov-10 14:30:55

There will be a gap in your employment history, so you will need to explain that somehow.

I agree with others who say that you should tell them about being on medication. A fit letter from your doctor could be of help in showing that you are now considered able to carry out the job.

jendifa Sun 14-Nov-10 16:07:43

No gap as such in my employment as I did voluntary work during that time (3 hours a week at Oxfam!!).

I'll see the doctor about getting a letter.

Thanks

nannynick Sun 14-Nov-10 16:27:30

Why Oxfam, why not a local pre-school? Why only 3 hours?

"I was a nanny to one family for 4 years and left to train to be a teacher."

That is perfectly fine... but you then need to say why you are now not a teacher.

From the end of your last childcare job, to now... there is a gap. Whilst you have done some voluntary work during that gap, there will be questions about the time between now and leaving your last nanny job.

Honesty is the way to go... you tried teacher training but something happened which meant that you didn't complete that course. Things do happen, that's the way life goes. Things are better now but a parent needs to be able to trust you so it's important that you are honest about the past and honest about how things will be moving forward.

You may find that some parents won't employ you - their loss. I get that when going for interviews... some parents won't employ me for whatever reason. Just keep applying and doing all you can to show that you are now fit to care for children.

jendifa Sun 14-Nov-10 16:45:48

Oxfam because I wanted something with very little responsibility. I was in charge of sorting the books, pricing them and stock rotating them. A very simple job that was, at the time, what I could manage.

nannynick Sun 14-Nov-10 16:50:20

I didn't mean for you to answer on here... more for you to think about how you would answer that question when parents asked you it.

Parents will ask you questions about that time period... so just be prepared to answer them as well as you can.

Danthe4th Sun 14-Nov-10 20:23:25

I think you need to show that you can now work with children again. Why not work in a nursery or pre-school where you have the support of other staff. You can also take the opportunity to update your knowledge by going on any courses to bring you back up to speed.

jendifa Sun 14-Nov-10 20:45:40

I'm volunteering in a school at the moment, as well as working part time in a call centre for a telecommunications company.

The Uni have said they will provide excellent references in regard to my teaching, the main issue on the PGCE was that I was unable to do all the planning to the level required.

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