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Miscarriage at 6 weeks, teacher - Would taking a week off be too much? Can't face work.

(10 Posts)
missmakesstuff Wed 15-May-13 13:35:18

Hi all, just looking for advice, I was 6 weeks pregnant last Thursday and then started getting pains and bleeding (light mostly, sometimes a bit heavy at times) over the weekend. I had a scan Monday, they couldn't find anything in my womb so it looked completed, and the blood tests showed very low HCG, had another blood test today, just waiting on result.

I felt like yesterday I could go back to work tomorrow, was feeling ok, had a nice afternoon out with DH and DD and had cried a bit but felt ok. Went to the Epau today and just burst into tears whilst they did the blood test and all the way home.

I work in secondary, apractical subject, HOD department and coordinator for lots of other things. We have a stressful period over the next week or so until the end of term, exams coming to their end and loads of marking to do, plus a parents evening tomorrow and a performance I should be co-ordinating on Tuesday - but I just can't face it. I am doing a lot by email at the moment, trying to get some marking done whilst my DD is at my mums for a few hours today, but just can't be bothered.

I really don't know what to do for the best, my Grandmother died 8 weeks ago and we were very close, I went into work for that and only had the funeral off, I kept on bursting into tears then though and only just held it together. I do think of her sometime and get upset as she would have been so supportive had she been around. As it is only my mm and dad know, it was horrible having to tell them I was losing it at 6 weeks. My in laws were staying with us which caused a fair bit of stress and I had to go through it over the weekend not telling them as they would have fussed and I couldn't face it.

I feel like a fraud for having time off as physically I am fine, don't feel unwell just a bit tired, my tummy is achy and still very bloated though. A few people had guessed I was pregnant last week as I apparently looked pregnant, was really nauseous and bloated, I have told them via email but I just don't think I am going to keep it together when I see them, and everyone else who asks me why I was off.

It was very easy physically and was over quickly, I can only assume it probably hadn't even developed past 4/5 weeks if I didn't pass anything, so I just feel silly having time off but then I also worry that I will set myself up for more work if I stay off. I also feel guilty about missing a parents evening and the students who are doing exams (practical subject) whose work I should be checking through and supporting with. I keep getting emails about the work I have set for the classes as it hasn't been easy setting work when I am not there.

meadowwalker Wed 15-May-13 13:49:06

This may be no help, but I know as a teacher you feel SO guilty about not being in school. But you have no look after yourself and other teachers/pupils will cope if you are not there. Why not take it a day at a time?
So sorry for your loss.

squizita Wed 15-May-13 15:45:49

So sad... I know exactly your feelings, I am a HoD and HoY and had an ERPC 3 weeks ago. I did NOT take enough time off - the problem is now it is coming back to bite me and others, because my stamina really wasn't up to much but as soon as I was back I was 'back'. Mega-work, mega-emotions, working all hours when I felt like I was in pain and drained, and often very upset. I've been back and forth to the Dr since with worrying pain, pale as a sheet ... thought I was infected, no, I just ran myself down. I get tearful easily and that's a torment too.

So... take the time off. Have a good long chat with your HR if it makes you feel better, it's a 60-80% female job s/he WILL have dealt with MC before. Get the GP to sign you off. If you have a good 2nd in D or experienced colleague can they handle things? If there's a delay your exams officer will simply need to ring the exam boards and explain.

When I went back, I was pretty open. The 'some people know some don't' I'd experienced on my 1st 2 MCs made it hard. So I gently said "sadly I had a miscarriage" or (for men) "I was expecting but I lost the baby". Weirdly, so few people freak out, it makes it easier. Also several women have said how they've had them too and 'it will be ok'. I don't know if that approach would help you but it did with me.

missmakesstuff Wed 15-May-13 17:39:43

Thanks both of you - sorry for your loss Squizita, it is so sad isn't it, for everyone - I keep saying how lucky I was, as we have DD and it was relatively easy - I have gone from saying that and being all fine and cheery yesterday and talking about trying again straightaway to just being a wreck today - I have emailed in and said I just cant cope just yet, they have said it's fine - its just hit me today I think, I have been sobbing on and off and tried to get books marked, just couldn't concentrate.

I hate the thought of not being there, it is always easier to be at work no matter how poo you feel as not being there just causes so much work! I will just have to relinquish some control and let others do what needs to be done, I have made a list of a few things I need to do, I will aim to work a couple of hours tomorrow while my mum takes my DD out and then relax on Friday with her. I sometimes feel like I should just be busy and then just feel stressed by it all and want to just curl up and ignore everything.

I think what is worrying me is trying to lie and avoiding people asking me if I am ok when i get back, as a few knew, so maybe I will take your advice and tell more people - but do feel a fraud as it was so early - I know others who have had much later losses and I still can't get over the feeling that I shouldn't wallow as it was so early. Stupidly I feel like as I barely felt it in terms of pain or blood loss, I should feel better emotionally too.

St4rfish Wed 15-May-13 18:11:13

Teaching is so emotionally draining that you can only be there if you feel resilient enough. I'm on SLT at my school and have taken 5 days off after MMC at 12 weeks. First pregnancy and only 3 people knew at work. Tried to go in yesterday but it was too soon; HT told me to go home. I'm going to try going in tomorrow, like you missmakes am worried about my 6th form classes as they are about to do exams. But yesterday taught me that you might be feeling better physically but emotionally you need to give yourself more time. Don't worry about being off, you won't do yourself any favours if you push yourself. Take care x

missmakesstuff Wed 15-May-13 18:37:43

Thanks St4rfish, so sorry for your loss - I can't imagine how awful it must be at that stage, I really feel for you. and crying again! I have got a leak, I swear it!

I hope you feel better and have chance to rest too - I know its true, we need to think about the long term. I strangely feel worse today than I did at the weekend. I wonder if when the hormones go away it is a drop suddenly, maybe that is why I feel so shit. My stomach is all bloated and sore, worse than it was even at the weekend. They have said they are fine with me being off till Monday, also they are going to give me support with the things I have going on next week, which is great. Going to set my cover for 2 days in one go this evening, sit and do some catch up on work at home tomorrow for a couple of hours and maybe try to go and have a massage or something, I feel like I need a release, I ache all over too.

AntoinetteCosway Wed 15-May-13 18:43:41

I took 5 days off (from teaching) after my miscarriage which was also at 6 weeks. I was bleeding quite heavily and although it was no more than a heavy period I burst into tears every time I went to the loo, so I couldn't face going to work and being in tears all the time. I know it's a bad time of year to miss school but you will handle this in your own way and if you need a few days at home then you have to put yourself first. I'm so sorry for your loss.

missmakesstuff Wed 15-May-13 22:36:23

Thanks. So far the teachers and colleagues I have mentioned it to have all been really nice and don't seem to think a week is excessive. I never have time off usually, go in with laryngitis, barely able to whisper, a bad back last year (made it worse too) and I think this time I just need to take time for myself and spend time with DD and DH.

Noggie Wed 15-May-13 23:02:55

So sorry to hear of your loss. Definitely agree that you need to look after yourself and go back to work when you feel more consistently strong. I had a mc and am a teacher - I was off for two weeks and still felt a bit wobbly going back.

DewDr0p Wed 15-May-13 23:12:04

I'm so sorry for your loss OP - please be kind to yourself. I'm not a teacher but I have miscarried in the past and I know the pressure to get back to work. But a week is not excessive and as a pp said, once you are back you are really back. You need some time to recover emotionally and physically and for your hormones to settle down too.

If it helps you to know, I took 2 weeks off from my pressured, professional job and even then I was only just up to it.

Take care.

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