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Getting signed off work for stress

(18 Posts)
MrsKCastle Sat 15-Nov-14 20:23:02

Anyone been in this situation? I'm going to the GP on Monday and hoping that I can be signed off. I have a history of depression, still on meds, and have just got to a point where I feel like I can't cope any more. Work is a nightmare and I'm not capable of doing a halfway decent job.

So, what I'm wondering is what next?If the GP signs me off, how long is it likely to be for? I really don't want to ever return to my workplace, but I have no idea if that's possible. But even if I could just have a few weeks, time to look around for something else, that would be a huge relief.

lillylop Sat 15-Nov-14 20:48:56

When I was signed off it was initially for 3 weeks but returned to docs several times for further notes and in total was off for about 3 months

CaulkheadUpNorth Sun 16-Nov-14 08:15:10

I was signed off with depression last year, so it might not be the same. I was off for two weeks, them another two weeks, then an eight week return to work on reduced hours and workload.

Rockinghorse123 Sun 16-Nov-14 08:18:50

I've recently returned to work after 6 weeks. The GP will initially sign you off for a fortnight because they will want to see how you are getting on but ime they tend to take your leaf on how much time you need.

MrsKCastle Sun 16-Nov-14 09:56:38

Thanks everyone, that's quite reassuring.

PacificDogwood Sun 16-Nov-14 09:59:58

If it's work related stress, then your workplace needs to address whatever the issue is.

See your GP, many will issue a 'first' line for 2 weeks.
Speak to your line manager and to occupational health if that's available to you.

Wrt how long you'll be signed off: how long is a peace of string wink. You can be signed off for however long it takes to resolved you issues.

IMO the important thing is to take the time to work on whatever the root of the problem is, so being signed off is not just 'running away', but something more constructive.

MrsKCastle Sun 16-Nov-14 10:10:36

Thanks PacificDogwood. I understand what you're saying, but I think it may be too late to address the issues- my management team are not known for being supportive. The ethos is very much 'This is the job, if you're not up to it then leave.' And while I could (and perhaps should) fight it with the aid of my union, I'm very much inclined to slip off quietly and find somewhere else to work.

I will definitely give some real thought to how I can avoid getting into this situation again though.

PacificDogwood Sun 16-Nov-14 10:14:14

I do understand - it's not always as simple as all that, is it?

You could use the time to search for/find another job?
Or go beyond your immediate management (if they are part of the problem) and speak to HR/Occ Health.

I hope you get the space to regroup, recover and find a way forward.

Love2014 Mon 17-Nov-14 21:59:25

I'm off work at the moment with stress and thinking about going back to work on Wednesday although feeling really down about it.

I was signed off for two weeks and went back on Friday and was really up to me how long I had. But I do feel the pressure to return. My HR manager has not been very understanding and been emailing and calling whilst off. She emailed me last week to let me know she had booked meetings in for me to do with staff on my first day back at work and next few days even outside my normal hours of work. I went back to her to tell her I'm not doing them. But still feel pretty low. As anything I have advised about my workload seems to have fallen on death ears and really want to leave work. Considering handing in my notice when I return to work on Wednesday, I have to give them 3 months contractually anyway so hoping I would have another job at end of that. I just think life is too short to be miserable due to work and doing something that makes you down x

Ememem84 Thu 20-Nov-14 16:11:59

I've been stressed for a long time, but this has repeatedly fallen on deaf ears. Have handed my notice in. Have until end of January until I can leave.

I am off today which has been lovely. I'm due back in tomorrow. I was determined not to visit my gp but am increasingly finding it difficult to cope. Any suggestions on how to cope? Aside from 9-5ing it.

rusmum Thu 20-Nov-14 20:46:53

I am going tomorrow to docs for this. Scared x

Ememem84 Thu 20-Nov-14 22:24:08

Good luck rus I'm going in tomorrow. Although I'm shaking with the fear. Too much work. No support. Not enough hours in the day to get it all done. Just being told to work harder.

If I don't feel happier tomorrow I'm booking a gp appointment for Monday night/Tuesday morning. Then will play it by ear. Am so reluctant to do this, even though I know it would help me (And prove a point that I'm overworked). Mostly because I won't get paid and don't want to let colleagues down. Because if I go down with stress like 5 others have in the last two weeks, it's one less person to help. Sigh.

Staying positive is tough. But I'm trying so hard to find good things. Had a lovely lunch by the sea today. And have reorganised wardrobe and discovered clothes I didn't know I had. Win.

rusmum Thu 20-Nov-14 22:45:04

Interested to know what we all work as lol

Ememem84 Fri 21-Nov-14 07:36:42

I'm offshore finance administration. I look after property holding companies.

Doesn't help that I haven't had a break for a year. No time off to relax.

I've been awake since 2am. Panicking about going to work.

junkfoodaddict Fri 21-Nov-14 09:09:17

Don't be scared about going to the GP and don't be scared or feel stupid for crying when at your appointment.
I went sick (self certified) on 7th October and saw my GP on the 8th. He signed me off for three weeks (actually asked how long I needed!) and when I went back, determined that despite I wanted to go back, he worked out I wasn't ready and gave me a further four weeks.
I had a review yesterday with work which despite going very well, I don't feel ready in myself to face anybody so likely be I will be given a further few weeks until after Christmas.
I felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulder when I went sick with stress. I felt great at home (makes you feel guilty but that is a positive step to getting to that point) and continued my life as normal without the work stress. Go out and meet friends, have a browse round the shops, spend time with family and children, all brilliant at recovering from stress.

junkfoodaddict Fri 21-Nov-14 09:10:33

Oh and I am off work with stress and a primary school teacher. Got 14 years experience and this is the first time I have taken time off with stress.

MrsKCastle Fri 21-Nov-14 13:11:02

Sorry I haven't been back to this thread for a while- really appreciate all the replies. I'm sorry to hear that so many people are going/have been through similar, but it does help to know it's not just me.

Ememem your place of work seems like a nightmare. If so many members of staff are going off, surely the management will have to make some changes? I hope today is better for you, but if it isn't don't feel bad about seeing the GP- there's clearly an issue with the company and it sounds as though you've given as much as you possibly can for quite some time.

Junkfoodaddict it sounds like we're in very similar situations- I'm also an experienced teacher. Very rarely off sick, never been off for mental health reasons despite being on ADs long-term. It's just all got too much. I also saw that you started another thread about occupational health- I'll be watching that with interest as I've also been referred and have no idea what to expect.

rusmum Fri 21-Nov-14 22:03:19

I am officially off sick for 2 weeks another primary teacher, 15 years in the job, first time off for anything other than a sick bug

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