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Dh wants to resign

(20 Posts)
acnebride Tue 31-May-05 14:08:21

Oh Lord. This is going to be a long one I think.

DH has serious depression, on multiple meds for 18 years. He is also a highly qualified specialist lawyer. Very well paid. He's also a great person!

In autumn 2004, ds was 10 months old, I went back to work and he changed jobs, as there was less and less work at his old job. Since then, he has been ill to the point of 2 - 3 days in bed, every two weeks. Holidays at Christmas and in April have also been spent entirely in bed. The last thing he was able to do 'for himself' was a day-long meditation retreat a few weeks ago, and it was touch and go.

I find this all quite tough too, as he is usually ill at the w/e, so I end up doing all the childcare and household stuff - quite lonely sometimes as other mums tend not to be around then.

He has just had a horror of a weekend - 3.5 days in bed, most of it crying when not sleeping. He's recovered again but he's just so had enough. We both want him to resign and get a less stressful p/t job, at least for a few months while he waits for the results of his very last professional exam. But he's 40 and has worked for a long time in this field.

Has anyone had experience of this? Would we be entirely kaiboshing his career for the future? Would he actually be able to get a p/t job do you think? he's not brilliant at interviews. I'd rather continue to work pt myself until ds goes to pre-school in 19 months, but that would mean allowing the mortgage to rise a bit. I'm OK with that but are we risking everything?

Any ideas or experiences welcomed.

I'm knackered! thanks for reading.

ggglimpopo Tue 31-May-05 14:12:12

Message withdrawn

jampots Tue 31-May-05 14:12:57

wow acnebride - sounds like he does need out.

I used to work for a lawyer in a "top 5" firm and he used to get incredibly stressed. He left in the end and became a holiday rep!

What about locum work when he can pick and choose and presumably less pressure?

expatinscotland Tue 31-May-05 14:15:55

How about - if he does want to continue in the legal field - looking for something pt for a charity or humanitarian organisation?

Resigning doesn't mean the end of his career, particularly if for medical reasons such as you describe. It means time to reflect on taking that career into a different direction and giving himself time to get his disease better managed.

If you can afford it, and you think his health would be improved, then it might be in all of your best interest to resign.

acnebride Tue 31-May-05 14:16:02

Hmm locums, that's a thought. I think the constant change might be a bad thing, but I'll suggest that, thanks jampots.

If he does pass his final exam he would like to do freelance work, but we both feel it would prob be even more stressful trying to make a full living at it - chasing clients etc.

jampots Tue 31-May-05 14:17:32

if he's able to work within a few firms then the chopping and changing won't be soo bad. Is his specialism very specialist?

acnebride Tue 31-May-05 14:20:05

He's a generalist within a specialist field . Feel I can't be more specific as they all seem to know each other...

jampots Tue 31-May-05 14:23:04


So, if its say, banking & insolvency work for instance could he not look at the firms who are "big" on this and offer his services.

acnebride Tue 31-May-05 14:23:34

expatinscotland, you read his mind re getting his condition under control. His consultant wants to have a fiddle with his medication, but the last time he reduced one of his meds by a small amount, he spent a week in bed . 'Luckily' it was our holiday week. If he weren't at work, they could have a try at various things with less risk.

If we can afford it - that's kind of the problem - we sort of can if we allow the mortgage to rise a bit. But it's manageable.

Surfermum Tue 31-May-05 14:56:59

How sympathetic are his employers? Would he be able to take some time off sick while his medication is sorted out? Would they allow him to work part-time?

acnebride Tue 31-May-05 15:16:39

His employers have really varied. His first boss was extremely distant and has taken against dh as a result of one piece of bad work he did - fair enough I suppose, although it wasn't in the field he was employed for. He has got a new boss as the old one is recognised as being v aggressive - the new boss is great actually and since then they have not put a foot wrong as employers BUT there have been lots of meetings, medical reports etc which has been a long drawn-out process and v stressful in itself. I do sympathise with them as employers though.

They might go for pt but I feel it's a bit thin ice at the moment.

acnebride Tue 31-May-05 15:22:35

Just wanted to say, I really appreciate the chance to muse on here. I'm in and out so can't always respond, but am grateful for all responses, thanks.

mancmum Tue 31-May-05 15:28:49

no job or lifetyle is worth your poor DH going thru this sort of hell... get him out, sell up if necessary and move somewhere else... but just get him out.. what price peace of mind and a happy family life?

Kaz33 Tue 31-May-05 15:52:15

As an exlawyer I totally sympthasise. I hated my job and since leaving am so much happier as a SAHM.

Lots of thoughts as you have a child under 5 they have to consider your husband working part time. Obviously certain specialities lend themselves to that - I did commercial property which was too transancational. But something like pensions, tax would be more appropriate.

YOur husband is highly trained and there might well be openings inhouse or in related fields.

I think when you are so unhappy - and yes I think it is possible that your husbands job is making him depressed. It certainly did me. Then it is hard to see the wood from the trees.

expatinscotland Tue 31-May-05 15:58:36

Living with someone who is chronically ill is stressful for the loved ones, too.

Have you also considered perhaps getting some help or counselling?

Feel free to muse! My ex suffered from clinical depression and yes, the transitions from medication to medication were definitely the more challenging parts of the disease to deal with.

Fran1 Tue 31-May-05 16:24:51

Do you know what comes first? the depression or the stress from the job? Does that make sense.

What i'm thinking is if the job plays a big part in his depression then yes get out. Charity work is a wonderful idea and a much more supportive working environment.

Alternatively go on longterm sick or incapacity benefit, and fight for every bit of help you can possibly get. Medication needs to be used alongside other treatments such as counselling. This way he has the option to go back to original work if he finds a more suitable way of controlling/curing his depression.

You as his carer needs to be supported also and the princess royal trust for carers would be able to put you in touch with a local carers organisation. They should be able to assist you in the fight to get your husband the help he needs.

Good luck

Easy Tue 31-May-05 16:42:02

Look, I've only skim-read this, but my immediate thought was
"Why on earth hasn't he taken long-term sick leave for this?"

He needs to completely get away from the environmentg that is causing this problem, and obviously the stress of feeling "I have to get back to work" is exasurbating (oh, can't spell) his problems.

Surely your doctor can help to sign him off for a couple of months or more. Or, for an even longer term, it sounds like your poor dh would qualify for incapacity benefit, giv ing up his full-time job completely until this situation is finally resolved.

Poor you, the whole family's life is on hold for this isn't it. If he wants to get out, then do it. But bear in mind that he's paid tax and NI all these years, he's entitled to get some of it back in benefits now that he needs it. Investigate that soon (local jobcentre will inform you, without judging at all), before he simply resigns, which might preclude him from his entitlement.

acnebride Wed 01-Jun-05 10:11:18

Wow, more responses, thank you.

He has had one patch of long-term sick leave 3 years ago in a different job. But we've never investigated incapacity benefit. I think we both feel he would actually be happier doing some work (more structure, get him up in the morning etc) at least part time. But I will definitely get advice from the jobcentre, I really appreciate that advice. Apart from anything else they might get him a job!

And thanks for advice on carers orgs too. Isn't it bizarre, I've worked for the NHS for 9 years, including some work with carers orgs, and it never even occurred to me to ring them. Always the way...

Freckle Wed 01-Jun-05 10:17:02

There are certain rules which govern how much you can earn whilst on incapacity benefit (and it isn't much). However, there are no restrictions on voluntary work. Could your dh not apply for IB and then look into doing voluntary work, such as advising for the CAB? Helping a charity? As it's voluntary, he can pull back when his health demands it without feeling as obligated as one does when being paid by an employer.

acnebride Thu 02-Jun-05 12:44:17

DH has talked to the manager at his practice and has asked about part-time work. We now think this could work well, if they'll do it, and at least it's worth trying before going for the nuclear option of resigning. Thanks for your input as this really helped - we'd kind of forgotten about the option to ask for pt work.

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