10.10.2019 World Mental Health Day.


I got a surprise this morning. The postman brought a letter indicating that my benefits are being cancelled. From today? No, I get a week time, from  the 18th. From that day I’ll be fit to either go back to my old job or to go looking for a new one.

I worked in the mental health field for 13 years. I gave it my best. Survived a few reorganizations and relocations. Saw old bosses leave and other take their place. I went to meetings, thought about how we could make health care better. How we could be progressive and how to fuel the love and interest we have for the chronically ill. I took care of my colleagues and would go that extra mile if needed. I don’t want to sound as a saint because sometimes the things we think are a good thing to do prove otherwise. A lot of the times we just don’t know. I love my job.

What I don’t love is the institution on its own, the long meetings, the lack of vision. Lack of compassion maybe. I love the clients I met there. But ‘they say I’m too soft’ and also ‘that they can’t adjust my job because of a burnout’. I got the choice: to heal on my own and just come back without a conversation nor adjustment about possible stressors at work or leave. Like that. ‘No adjustments’ were possible not even for the first month (if I would ‘choose’ to return) after being absent for 7 months at that time.

I became more ill and depression hugged me tight. While working I did pay for insurance.  I followed a mindfulness course. I went to a burnout coach and followed her advice. I did what the GP told me to do. I made an appointment myself with the occupational physician and psychologist. Everybody tells me basically the same thing; take care of yourself first. Take the time you need to heal. Now I see a therapist every week and I also started drama therapy. I take my medications. I monitor my sleep. I follow the advice of my psychiatrist which is not to go back to work yet.

Without notice and without being examined by a doctor, this letter came. I went to the union and they told me to take legal steps and in the meanwhile, I don’t know. I feel defeated and sad, on World Metal Health Day.

14 thoughts on “10.10.2019 World Mental Health Day.

  1. Do you agree with what everybody says? That’s an important piece. While I’m sure today is not the day you want hypothetical solutions, based on what I’ve read of yours since following you, I think you’d make a terrific life coach.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Such a good remark! I do not agree with what everybody says although I am sensitive to opinions of others (what I am working on in therapy now). But in the midst of a psychological storm, you need some pointers to find your way back. I was too ‘far gone’ to think about that and initially followed all the ‘advice’. As for a career path, a life coach could be something for me, after recovery! Thank you for reading my posts and commenting.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Gosh, will they stop your benefit even though you’ve been advised not to work? That kind of thing happens here – the benefits agency ignores medical advice – but people appeal, and 3/4 of them win. An extraordinarily high number. How has it worked out?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will update in a post more in detail.
      In ‘short’: I went to another doctor, I’m not fit to work. I need to follow job coaching. The appeal is pending, 1/3 chance to win. In January I’ll launch myself on the jobmarket. I need to resign the old job first, that is another proces.
      As a result of all that my mental health declined. It’s been a little better since yesterday. I’m not strong enough yet for all that jazz, that much is clear to me.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I suggest to you not to make any big decisions until you *do* feel strong enough. If you are able to put things off… I spend a couple of afternoons per week doing charity things, unpaid. The people with whom I work are far more pleasant, in general, than those with whom I worked in business. That work is, I suppose, a gentle easing back into the work environment.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you that is very smart suggestion which I would follow in an eyewink. I don’t think they will give me that opportunity though.
        I’m at the point of no caring now.

        I want to get better, I will get better and I will enjoy my life. I am that stubborn. They rest will come as it comes.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I did think on that an existing employer would probably say, “if you’re fit enough to work there, then why not here?” 😦 But remember things like pension before you do anything. I know, you will have considered all this already…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yes, now I’m secure for my pension, when I resign not anymore of course. My plan is to heal until december, then I need to resign and I’ll receive unemployment benefits and go job hunting. My mental health needs to adjust. But there will be a period that will not be good for pension. I looked at the situation from left to right and from the upside and the downside. It is a difficult one, but I think I chose the least harmful option. Beware future surprises of course. Thank you so much for your consideration and thoughtful comment!


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