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Sorry situation with regards to work

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bluefox
bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
Hello,

You may have seen some of my previous posts on here about work and returning to work. My employer has kept my job open still after 18 months. Anyway, they've given so many weeks to decide if I'm to return and return to night shift working. I was wondering if anyone could give me any advice?

I currently struggle with severe anxiety, depression/low mood and dissassociative seizures. I'm currently claiming ESA (support group), UC and PIP (more on that later). I've had occupational health and the report says I'm unfit for work but if I tried an antidepressant I may be fit for work in 4-6 weeks time. They recommend preferably a day shift phased return. 

I've been offered a return back onto night shift working after a phased return on days. This doesn't seem fair? Anyway, if I don't return, the inevitability is that they will dismiss on capability grounds.

Can anyone point me in the right direction? And haven't not worked now for 18 months, I feel scared I'll never have a job ever again now.


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Comments

  • Ross_Alumni
    Ross_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,652 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hi @sierrafox, lovely to see you posting again, though of course it's a shame to hear about what you are going through.

    If you feel as though what has been proposed is unfair, have you discussed whether it would be possible to sort out a different arrangement for your return? Maybe it could also be worth asking if you could see how things go and then re-evaluate your progress so that you can see how you manage and make any alterations to your work patterns.

    If you would like to receive some professional advice for this situation, ACAS might be a good option to contact.
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  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    The only trouble I have is I worked nights for years and it really impacted on my mental health and this current break down is hard to get out of. 

    I am currently claiming ESA, UC and PIP and I imagine all 3 would end if I returned to work. 

    But it’s more about the type of work rather than work itself I guess. 

    My worry is if I lose my job I’ll never work again, as well. What employer would take someone on with a sick record like mine? :(
  • Sandy_123
    Sandy_123 Scope Member Posts: 54,277 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hi @sierrafox if you returned  to work you won't loose pip your uc will change according to wages.  I can't vouch for esa  but someone will  tell you more about that soon. 
    I'm a bit confused how they think 1 tablet will make you fit for work?  If they do dismiss you then depending on how long you've been with the company, they will retire you on ill health and should pay you a sum for that.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    I think possibly my PIP would be a contradiction, as I struggle socially with stuff. To be fair, I am really struggling with panic when out and about still. 

    You’re right, taking one tablet seems ludicrous to change what is essentially a cognitive issue I guess. I’m not sure if anti depressants do actually work and they suspect autism with myself. 

    I can’t retire ill health, as I want to work again. But it would be a capability dismissal. My main worry is whether I’ll ever get a job ever again following this whole thing. I worked for nearly two decades before my mental health conditions and stuff took the better of me. 
  • Sandy_123
    Sandy_123 Scope Member Posts: 54,277 Disability Gamechanger
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    Best person to see is your dr, if he/she doesn't think your fit for work best to follow there advice.  Are you putting fit notes into uc?  As regards to working again, you might find a different job more suitable for your needs, but only you know how you feel.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    Doctor does keep giving me fit notes. I don’t need them now for UC or ESA. 

    I’m scared nobody will employ me again but I also struggle to leave the house at times too. 
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Community member Posts: 21,964 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hi 

    In my opinion as ex hr manager your company are being fair thru have kept your Jon open all thud time , offered phased return and on days . There has to come a time when you either can return to work or not 

    Have you asked if there 8d any possibility of moving onto days tho.vurrently there are mo guarantee you could do that 

    As for retirement that I'd only an option if your in a 9rmsion scheme and that decision would be down to the pension provider and not work . It is hard to get ill health retirement especially if there is a possibility of improvement 

    I think your best option is medical dismissal at this time you can then concentrate on getting yourself better and put work out of your mind for now 

    As for future employment you will have a gap in employment which is valid to give you time to get better and negate your current absence record 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 56,110 Disability Gamechanger
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    Your PIP won't be affected if you returned to work, people claim PIP and work. The only issue could be at review, if the work you do contradicts the reasons why you're claiming PIP.
    ESA, you can do permitted work but you must work less than 16 hours per week and earn no more than £152/week. If you work 16 hours your ESA will end.
    It doesn't make a difference financially if your ESA ends because you're claiming UC. You will have the work allowance, which means a portion of your earnings will be ignored before the deductions apply.
    If you claim for help with your rent your work allowance will be £344/month, if you don't claim for help with the rent it's £573/month.
    Any earnings outside of this will reduce your UC by 55%.
    The same applies to working here as it does for PIP. If the work you do contradicts the reasons why you're in the Support Group/LCWRA then it can go against you next time you're reassessed.
    If you return to work, you must report the changes.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    If working contradicts the claims by going back to work, doesn’t that mean I have to report the changes immediately, rather than at review? 

    Please can you verify that for me. As it would be an improvement in health surely?

    I have a feeling my LCWRA was based on suicidal thoughts. Just a hunch anyway. 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 56,110 Disability Gamechanger
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    You need to report the changes if you start work anyway and the same applies to UC and your ESA. People claim these and work. I can't tell you whether there would be any contradictions because i have no idea how your conditions affect you, you would need to get expert advice for this.
    In all honesty, is returning to work now the best thing for you? You've asked this question quite a few times here, so it's clear to me that you're not sure on this.
    I agree with Janer here, maybe it's better to concentrate on yourself for now rather than returning to work. 
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    You do have a point. 

    Who can offer expert advice on whether these things would contradict this?

    I know I’m in a bad way mentally with mental health conditions. But having worked for so long before I became unwell, I feel really ashamed and I know that’s the illness but at the same time I would love to fight back. 

    Maybe voluntary might help. 
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 56,110 Disability Gamechanger
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    This link will tell you what advice agency is local to you. https://advicelocal.uk/
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    Thank you, poppy. 

    I read an article today in the Metro about a lady who had 18 months off, similar to me. Though 6 months of my time off was medical investigations and an operation. 

    Though peoples responses were nobody is going to ever employ her ever again. I fear I may be in the same situation. 

    With an 18 month absence record. Though I may add the company didn’t follow their own policies and procedures correctly and we can discuss this in more detail. It took 7 months to get an OH referral! Yes 7 months!! 

    But who realistically is going to employ me with this absence record?
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Community member Posts: 56,110 Disability Gamechanger
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    sierrafox said:


    But who realistically is going to employ me with this absence record?

    Lots of people get a job after not having worked for many years. I know someone that recently applied for 2 jobs after not having worked for about 5 years. They were offered both jobs.
    I would appreciate it if members wouldn't tag me please. I have all notifcations turned off and wouldn't want a member thinking i'm being rude by not replying.
    If i see a question that i know the answer to i will try my best to help.
  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    sierrafox said:


    But who realistically is going to employ me with this absence record?

    Lots of people get a job after not having worked for many years. I know someone that recently applied for 2 jobs after not having worked for about 5 years. They were offered both jobs.
    See. Those stories I find inspirational. Right now I feel so devoid of confidence. I appreciate my mental health is the cause but I feel so pessimistic about the future. 


  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    Hi @sierrafox At the moment I think you are over thinking this. Your main priority should be to get well. Are you getting all the help you should be from your GP to help you with this? Take care. 
    Hello

    I think my GP is a bit funny because I have ongoing symptoms that are suggestive of other issues with regards to Functional Neurological Disorder. I was diagnosed with Dissociative seizures or NEAD, another word.  

    I did have a lovely GP but unfortunately she left and she was also a mentor for me and an FND advocate. Now I feel in a black hole. 




  • Alex_Alumni
    Alex_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,562 Disability Gamechanger
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    I'm sorry to hear what's happened with your GP @sierrafox

    It can be difficult when someone who we trust and have a good relationship with isn't part of our life anymore, especially when the reasons for this are outside our control. 

    I think the fact that you've built up this relationship shows that you're able to trust. You've let someone in, accepted their support and advice, and are happy asking them questions. 

    Do you think this is something you'd be able to do this with someone new? 

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  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    I'm sorry to hear what's happened with your GP @sierrafox

    It can be difficult when someone who we trust and have a good relationship with isn't part of our life anymore, especially when the reasons for this are outside our control. 

    I think the fact that you've built up this relationship shows that you're able to trust. You've let someone in, accepted their support and advice, and are happy asking them questions. 

    Do you think this is something you'd be able to do this with someone new? 

    The problem is my previous doctor who also sadly passed away. So I lost two in the space of a few months. Now I’m being passed from locum to locum. One of them even judged me for wearing a hoodie, pair of jeans and trainers. How do they expect people with mental health issues to dress?

    Saw an article a few weeks ago of people who had committed suicide and they had holidays in the sun before they took their own lives. I think it’s rude of a doctor to judge someone like that. 

    And actually that day I didn’t shower, brush my teeth. The clothes I actually wore I had worn for one week solid. But she judged my appearance on a cover, not a story. 

    I didn’t have this with my previous doctors. 
  • Alex_Alumni
    Alex_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,562 Disability Gamechanger
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    I am sorry to hear this @sierrafox everything happening so close together must have been really hard.

    You might find it helpful to visit Cruse's website if you wanted any support with feelings of grief or bereavement. 

    I'm sorry to hear you had a negative experience with that particular GP, you shouldn't be feeling judged by someone who should be there to help and support you.

    If it's helpful to find out how to make a complaint, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman has a factsheet on How to raise concerns or complaints about a GP practice. It's a PDF I'm afraid, so let us know if you need the information in a more accessible format.

    Do you have the support of a mental health team or other specialists at the moment?

    If you're struggling with how you're feeling about things you can always reach out for support from Samaritans, who you can call on 116 123, and you don't need to be in crisis to have someone to listen. You can also text "SHOUT" to 85258 if you prefer not to speak on the phone. I'd also encourage you to visit Mind's website for information on how to look after your mental health.

    If you feel we can offer additional support, please do say, and we'll do what we can to help :) 
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  • bluefox
    bluefox Community member Posts: 636 Pioneering
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    Thank you, Alex. The team at Scope are wonderful and I know sometimes I can be a real pain when I overthink and a frustrating person to be around but I can’t help the way my mind operates at times. 

    I have a 24/7 crisis line but I’m currently with the NMHT team not the community. I’m not sure what the difference is. I’m at level 3.5 not 4 in the interventions (it means nothing to me).

    I’m not sure what to do. Losing a job of nearly two decades feels incredibly tough mentally. Though the work I did was also incredibly hard and I don’t feel at times “I’m up to it” at present. 

    I have ADHD / ASD referrals to come too. Whether that will help explain my lifelong struggles with anxiety and depression I’m not sure. Though I know my counsellor recently said my ACE’s score was 8, indicating a high level of trauma experienced as a child that could be resurfacing. I’m not sure why it would resurface now. 

    In all honesty, I need to picture in my head what a good life would look like to me and currently my life sucks in terms of how I view I anyway. I used to have a job (that was hard and contributed to poor mental health) but I had hobbies such as playing football and socialising. I currently do none of these and I know it’s a contributing factor to my mental health. But you throw in everything else and I became agoraphobic. I rely and am now dependent on others and that plays into my psyche I guess. 

    I feel like I’m telling my life story here. I’d just say the next few weeks / months are going to be hard. 




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