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Is this normal?

(21 Posts)
sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 20:29:28

I am a 40 year old single mum with 2 dc's and divorced 7 years.
I won't bore you with the past 7 years but it's been a roller coaster. Many many financial difficulties. No input from the ex.
I am 2nd year into my nurse training and not only difficult, I don't even know if I'm enjoying it. O social life (I see noone) No time to exercise (I used to run to destress) 0 bank balance (no exaggeration my card just declined at the petrol station) juggling childcare and activities for them. I'm absolutely exhausted. I am counting my pennies to put fuel in my car and food on the table to help people with their mental health and today I question mine.
I am posting because I have come home after the embarrassment of no money to a list of ingredients my eldest Dd needs for cookery and my youngest swimming fee is due by Wednesday.
I just had an emotional breakdown in the shower because I have no shampoo! All minor minor things I know. Honestly encountered much much worse and had to face many obstacles but tonight....I have just literally sat down completely exhausted and thought 'what is this all for? What am I doing? Is this normal?'
Am I having a blip? In need of another kick up the arse dust yourself off telling off? Or am I actually havin a break down here?
Could do with a little chat on here with some kind folk if you wouldn't mind?

Offred Mon 06-Mar-17 20:40:44

Oh god I feel your pain! Just what are we actually doing? I've just reached breaking point I think. Too much for too long.

JK1773 Mon 06-Mar-17 20:50:54

Oh your poor thing. I'm not sure what I can say to help but you are doing a fantastic job. Try not to be too hard on yourself flowers

frazzled3ds Mon 06-Mar-17 20:52:53

Hello. I don't know if I can help in any way, but I didn't want to read and run.... it sounds as though you've got a great deal on your plate at the moment!

Are you in receipt of any benefits, or perhaps entitled to some you're not getting - might help a bit on the finances side of things. Perhaps have a chat with Citizens's Advice to see if there is anything they can signpost for you. Do you have a food bank local to you? CAB may be a referral agent and if you're struggling financially you may be able to access some help from there (I've been there in the past and having a food parcel gifted to me made such a huge difference at the time). Maybe a chat with your GP too?

With regards to your course, have you spoken with tutors or others on the course about how you're feeling? There may be some additional support they can give, or maybe take a brief break to give you some space to think over whether it is the right thing for you?

I'm guessing you're feeling rather overwhelmed by everything - rather than try to deal with it all at once, break it down into smaller bits and take it all step by step (something I'm still working on!!)

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:15:35

Thankyou all 😊
I am on benefits and get a bursary but not alot. My mortgage is quite high. I pay for childcare too.
I haven't said anything to anyone I'm too scared to. I feel a bit like I'm the only one. I can't take time out as the bursary will stop and it's my income. I have nothing else. I would feel like I had failed if I gave up now. My goal is to be able to get a half decent wage and this degree would help with that.
Maybe I need to speak to the uni counseller.
I'm definitely overwhelmed. My head feels all fuzzy today. It's like I can't retain anymore information.
I do try to break things down usully as i know that can help. It's all got too much.
Thankyou again all!

RandomMess Mon 06-Mar-17 21:18:57

Please go to the uni and see the student money advisors and ask for a hardship grant, if you don't qualify for that then you should be able to get a hardship loan.

You are doing something incredibly difficult, well done you flowers

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:24:41

Ok thankyou 😊 I will call the uni tomorrow. It's finding time as I am 9-5 on placement and have to hurry back to pick up my dc's. I will phone on my break tomorrow though.

frazzled3ds Mon 06-Mar-17 21:27:44

There may well be a similar hardship scheme available at school too - I know that here there are uniform grants and free school meals available to families in receipt of certain benefits, and there may be some assistance for things like cookery class ingredients.... you never know!

Don't be frightened of talking to someone - you won't be the first to be feeling a bit up against it all, and you won't be the last. Uni counsellors and support teams are there to help you, make use of them smile

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:35:42

I am getting free school meals now. Every other week I have bought the ingredients it's just this week I am skint. Not sure who I would ask. We live in a small town where everyone knows everyone even the teachers. I feel embarrassed and I know I shouldn't.
I will speak to my uni about finances and hopefully someone to about my struggles.
Thankyou 😊

HostaFireAndIce Mon 06-Mar-17 21:39:17

OP, you sound like you're doing a great job. I remember when I was doing my teacher training - that was difficult enough and I only had me to look after! I agree you should talk to somebody at uni. You might even find that it makes it easier just to have said something, but I agree that they will be able to help.

Steamgirl Mon 06-Mar-17 21:39:34

You may not be feeling it just now but you sound like you're an awesome mum. Fantastic that you are studying and keeping everything together for your dc.

Hats off to you from another single mum. And flowers. It's normal for every day life as a single parent to feel gruelling sometimes ... it's relentless.

pudding21 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:40:16

I am a nurse, and nurse training is very demanding, its a tough career but if you drop out you will always regret it I am sure.

Do you have a local food bank near you, no shame but things must be tough for you. Have a look at money saving expert too to see if you can get any money saved on usual things like insurance etc.

Also have a look if you are entitled to any of the NHS discounts.

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:50:29

Thankyou for your kind words, means alot 😊 Feeling all emotional again but thankyou it really does mean alot.
I'm hoping it's another blip. I just feel different this time. My head doesn't feel right.
Pudding - I have learnt and I see how amazing most nurses are. I'm struggling to enjoy it because of the financial side and juggling childcare. I knew it was going to be challenging but not as challenging as this. I also wish I had chosen general instead of mental health but it's too late.
Thankyou for all the advice, definitely taking it on board.

pudding21 Mon 06-Mar-17 21:55:49

Hey, hats off to you for doing your nurse training while a single mum to two young kids. I nearly decided to do mental health and ended up doing adult and was pleased I did. You could always retrain in the future (1 year course to convert). You deserve a great big pat on the back smile

I work in recruitment now from home so not clinical anymore, but once a nurse, always a nurse, I might return to clinical in the future smile

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:02:59

Thanks Pudding 😊
Can I ask why you are no longer nursing?
I would say 9 out of 10 people have said they wouldn't do their training again if they went back. I question this in my head.

pudding21 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:08:56

I moved overseas. I got registered as a nurse here so could if I wanted to but the salary here is ridiculous (I'm talking 900 euros max monthly). I earn a lot more than that now, and work form home and travel. I do a lot of teaching though so not completely out of it. I am still registered with the NMC but this year probably won't be able to revalidate as I haven't met the requirements for the professional development, but here I just pay monthly and stay on the register for life smile

If we hadn't relocated overseas I would have stayed in the job I was doing as I loved it and was a Band 7. I worked 14 years in the NHS and although its a tough job, there isn't anything like it really. I am massively passionate about nursing, it is such a flexible career.

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:16:28

Thanks for sharing Pudding 😊

Teabay Mon 06-Mar-17 22:18:47

Hi sparkle

I left the family home last year and have set up by myself with the DC.

I've had similar moments to you, and sometimes they knock me sideways / sometimes I just have to laugh or I'd like one the floor sobbing.

My strategy now is to make it the new normal... "So what we have no milk DC - you can eat cereal dry, you know..." "Children's toothpaste? There's toothpaste and toothpaste - when I was a kid there was just toothpaste for kids - let's pretend we're in the olden days". And my particular favourite from my 6 year old - "Mummy, why do other people have soap to wash their hands and we have shampoo?"!!!!

You've gotta laugh x

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:26:37

Thankyou tea 😊 yes laugh or of course cry in the middle of a petrol garage haha!
It's like I needed that mini break down. I have no tears left. I feel better for chatting on here. It's tough having nobody to chat to.
Take a deep breath.....

Runningissimple Mon 06-Mar-17 22:32:44

If your kids are on free school meals, the school probably gets the pupil premium fund for them. This can be used to pay for cookery ingredients and even for swimming lessons. Go and talk to the school, explain your situation, ask if they receive pp funds for your kids and ask how they are being spent. They should be going directly on them, this will need to be audited and it's definitely there for extra curricular stuff and equipment or resources.

Keep going op - you'll get there flowers

sparkle00 Mon 06-Mar-17 22:36:52

Thankyou running 😊
Actually yes, I do get free swimming as I have just found out. Didnt even think it would be for school lessons too but I will inquire about that. Thankyou for that.

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