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Hard to keep going today - help needed

(24 Posts)
Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 09:44:39

Last January I initiated a divorce from my 14 yr EA marriage. Two DC under 11.
I lost my home, thousands of pounds, friendship of one or two people (thankfully most stuck by me) and slightly lost my mind.
Since October I've felt unable to cope with much. Was recommended to be off work (extremely demanding management job, 30+ people, public sector) and for first time in 20 years got signed off.
Now struggling to get back to being me, am so tearful. Life is so hard.
Anyone else been here and survived to tell the tale?
Please help.

Lostsoul231 Mon 16-Jan-17 10:23:12

I've been there. Abusive exh, two very young children, lost my house and had to move in with parents, list all my savings. Lost Everything!

Hang on in there. I promise it will get better and you will rebuild your life. It may not be the life you thought it would (mine certainly isn't) but it will be on your terms and not subject to the emotional abuse of your exh. That in itself is something to be proud of and feel positive about.

Lostsoul231 Mon 16-Jan-17 10:23:54

Lost all my savings

Lostsoul231 Mon 16-Jan-17 10:24:49

Maybe see your GP and ask for counselling or anti depressants.

InfoFreako Mon 16-Jan-17 10:31:59

I hope things get better for you.

It's a cliche but time is a great healer.

Good luck!


Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 10:33:56

Thank you.
I took myself off for counselling last year, costing me a fortune but I'm not sure how helpful it is at the moment - can't decide if I'd be worse without it or not!
Do you feel like you again? I'm so tearful!

Lostsoul231 Mon 16-Jan-17 11:57:38

Experiences change you.

I feel accepting what has happened and that you're still you but the "new you" with more life experience is a good way of getting through the troughs! There will be peeks too, along the way. It's just difficult to see them at times.

At night, I try to think of three good things that have happened that day. It's not always easy to do and sometimes I have to dig really deep but there's always something to be thankful for even on the darkest of days.

I hope you feel better soon. If you are tearful and feel hopeless every day, I would recommend you back to your GP.

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 14:11:45

Has anyone returned to work after time off to get over trauma, and how was it?
Any tips welcomed - am due to go back next week and I'm REALLY anxious about it.

Lostsoul231 Mon 16-Jan-17 15:16:44

No. I couldn't take time off. I was on maternity leave (youngest was 6weejs old) when I left exh and had to back to work when baby was 4 months old. It was tough to say the least!! Hardest period of my life but got through it and so will you. You're stronger than you realise smile

TheMartiansAreInvadingUs Mon 16-Jan-17 15:25:12

I woils do a list of things that are nourishing for you.
Maybe it's spending time with friends, going for a walk outside in the middle of the trees or by a river.
What works for me is yoga and some meditation. A friend is swearing by her exercise class.
But you do need to find what you are finding helpful and replenishing. Find some time everyday to do that, even if it's just 15mins each day.

Look at your diet. It's likely that some foods will make you feel worse and others better. Again, I know dairy makes me heavy and I find it hard to concentrate or do things. But if I ensure I have lots of vegs in my diet, I feel much better.

In effect, the best thing you can do is to look after yourself.
You know the saying 'you can't pour from an empty cup'. Make sure you cup is full first and then coping with going back to work and sorting out all these feelings re your ex will be much easier.

mysinkingheart Mon 16-Jan-17 15:45:25

Hi OP, it is really hard, I found surviving the ea the hardest thing ever. And just when you're finally rid of the person, the financial issues kick in to wear you down further. It doesn't sound like you've had enough time to get over the trauma and exhaustion.
Do you absolutely have to go back to work/to such a demanding job? I know that sometimes we just have to. I couldn't get signed off as am self employed but would have really benefited from it in hindsight. To me, if you're feeling tearful a lot of the time, being at work might not be the best thing for your health quite yet. Would the doctor sign you off for longer?
If you do have to go, my only advice would be to take it as slowly as your work load permits. Don't take too much onboard to make up for your absence. And especially choose the people you confide in carefully.
And if it's really too much then don't make yourself ill over it. Did you love your job before? If not, maybe now's the time to think of a change towards something less stressful. It sounds like you have a lot of skills and experience, which is great.
Best wishes whatever you decide to do flowers

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 16:04:50

Thankyou my sinking heart there is some good advice.
I don't know if I'm in a place because I need to get back to work and routine to give myself something else to think about, or if I should take more time off to just cry it out.
I don't know if it's just the thought of going back that's harder, or the shame & embarrassment of being not able to cope - I just don't know anything at all.

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 16:06:51

And what if I'm NEVER back to normal and can't go back to work?
It's overwhelming.

Cary2012 Mon 16-Jan-17 16:14:52

If you've been off for a long time, would your GP suggest a phased return?

I think you should tell your GP exactly what you've told us, and if your company won't go for a phased return you should be signed off longer. You don't sound ready for work yet, and a sympathetic GP will see this.

Be really gentle on yourself. When I was going through similar, work helped me as it was a distraction from all the stress of the break up. In hindsight I think I pushed myself too hard.

Take care

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 16:18:18

Thank you Cary
I've been off since November 1st. I could have longer I think if I went back to Doc.
I'm on a phased return starting with 2 days this week, 3 next, 4 week after then 5 full time.
Like you I wonder if work will actually make me feel better and more in control, but I'm terrified of falling apart in public.
How did you know you pushed yourself too hard?

mysinkingheart Mon 16-Jan-17 16:29:18

Agree with cary about the phased return.

I understand that feeling of shame but it's his not yours, don't carry it for him.

After years of protecting ( read enabling) him by not telling anyone, I found it liberating to speak up for myself, the truth can be quite empowering. Bare essentials are enough "my husband was abusive and for a while it made me quite ill. I used to be embarassed to tell people but not now. It takes time to heal from trauma. I hope you don't mi décembre if I don't discuss it further". Or less formally " my xh was abusive, I don't want to talk about it, no offence and thanks for your concern" etc. Whatever you're comfortable with but prepare what you're willing to say in advance. And never say sorry.

Again, it does sound like you need more time. Be kind to yourself..

happypoobum Mon 16-Jan-17 16:30:06

If you are public sector can you not get counselling through work? I know all LA workers in my area do.

If you feel the phased return isn't over a long enough period, let them know - assume you have a union rep helping you?

Agree with PP - be really gentle with yourself, treat yourself as you would someone who was recovering from a traumatic accident or similar. It will get better flowers

mysinkingheart Mon 16-Jan-17 16:30:17

Don't mind
Silly French phone!

Cary2012 Mon 16-Jan-17 16:41:43

I guess what I mean about in hindsight I pushed myself is that at the time I threw myself into work and thought it helped. Everyone thought I was really strong and coping, but it caught up with me in the long school holidays (am a teacher), and I was exhausted and burnt out. I perhaps should have taken up GP's offer to sign me off when the break up happened. But I felt I needed one area in my life that wasn't affected by the break up, where it didn't define me if that makes sense?

Best advice I was given was 'treat yourself as you would your best friend'. Also my grandma's mantra, 'this too shall pass' helped.

You will be ok, so many of us have been where you are, but you are fragile, so do what's best for you.

A colleague had a phased return recently and initially it was supposed to be like yours, but her dr intervened and school slowed it down so it didn't overwhelm her, and she's now back full time and coping well.

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 17:00:36

Thankyou happy. I have been offered 6 sessions from LA but it will clash with my private (I've been going for 12 months) so I'm sticking with mine and the expense.
I get it Cary it took me ages to actually BE off (process started in Jan, it was Nov before I was absent.
I too am afraid of it catching up with me - although it seems to have finally caught up this week - the very week I am to return...
I'm frightened work will think I'm messing them about.

SeaCabbage Mon 16-Jan-17 18:56:24

I hope others can help you with your worries about returning to work.

What I am wondering about is what you have got. You listed in your OP all the things you have lost. I wondered what you have right now. You lost your home, is your new home awful or actually ok? You lost some friends, but are the ones who've stuck by you, really good ones? What else do you have in your life which is nourishing or positive?

Hardtokeepgoing Mon 16-Jan-17 19:07:18

Seacabbage, you make such a poignant point. Today I couldn't see any of it - this is becoming more frequent, not less. Right now I have my DC back from school and their dad's, they are playing together in another room and I am making spag bol. I have found this past year that I have solid friends but I find it really difficult to let anyone in. I have a recent Significant Other who is amazing but I know that I have to do this for myself.
I am losing perspective more and more - I thought that as I moved further away from being married (now divorced) and under the influence of Ex H & his EA I'd be able to cope more, not less.

Hardtokeepgoing Tue 17-Jan-17 16:15:19

Thank you for all your advice yesterday. Today was slightly better, I kept busy, but I'm planning a VERY early bath and bed tonight - for me and the DC!!
Tomorrow is my first day at work since Oct 31st - dreading it.

mysinkingheart Wed 18-Jan-17 09:34:09

Good luck today flowers

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