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A little advice?

G

Gray Area

New member
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Messages
3
Hi everyone,
Just joined up today and already asking for advice - some people eh? Seriously though all suggestions will be welcome as I'm currently at a bit of a loss. Apologies if this is in the wrong section by the way.
The situation is this. My job entails running a small team of office workers. A couple of weeks ago one of my staff, a woman who's been working with me for the past two years or so, asked to speak to me privately about a personal problem. I'm not going to go into too many details, but basically it was over an awkward relationship she had had. She believed (still believes) that other people in the office were laughing at her because of it. I advised her to simply ignore it, telling her people can be petty but quickly move on to other topics if ignored. Plus, of course, anything she did in her private life was no-one else's business anyway.
Since then we've talked a couple of times and each time she's told me that the problem isn't going away and in fact it's getting worse. She now thinks there is some sort of whispering campaign being waged against her. I should probably add at this point that since our original conversation I'd been keeping my ears open for anything like this but hadn't heard a thing.
What has me worried at the moment is our most recent conversation. She was telling me about things she'd overheard (managers calling for her to be sacked, people talking about solicitors if she took her problem to the union or HR, etc) which I know to be untrue.
At one point she even refused to talk for a few minutes because she was convinced someone was listening at the office door.
For what it's worth I believe there may have been some basis to her original claim (although I have no evidence of it) but she appears to have let the situation spiral out of control in her mind to the point where I'm genuinely worried about her mental health.
I know she has spoken to a few of her friends in the office about the situation, but as they were apparently quite dismissive of what she claimed was happening she tells me that I'm now the only person she can confide in.
I really don't know what approach to take in trying to help her and would appreciate advice, especially from anyone who may have been in a similar situation.
Also, just to make it clear, please don't think I'm asking as an employer. I'd just like to do the best I can for a person I regard as a friend and who seems to be going through a tough time at the moment.
Thanks very much!
 
T

Twylight

Guest
Hello and Welcome

It's always tricky when it's a friend
Keep an eye on her
If it gets worse all you can really do is write to her GP
But not just yet
 
B

bobbiecat

Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Messages
5
i would keep and eye on her and maybe talk to her and just try and reasure her
 
G

Gray Area

New member
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Messages
3
Thanks Twylight and bobbiecat. I'll certainly continue to keep an eye on her and do whatever I can. I have been trying gently to suggest that sometimes it's easy to become convinced that more is going on than actually is, but don't want to go wading in with my size 9s and tell her she's imagining things. I have a feeling that would make a bad situation worse.
 
iffybob

iffybob

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 20, 2009
Messages
4,858
Location
England
Honesty

You could try and be honest with her , that you do not know or have heard of any of this going on, and that if any of this were to happen at least on the employment front, you would definatly know aboyut it, and that you dont... and that she has nothing to worry about..

... how you explaine what or why she belives to be going on is another matter...

.. good luck , ... boB ... :flowers:
 
SimonB

SimonB

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Joined
Feb 10, 2010
Messages
938
Location
United Kingdom
The event has clearly triggered something

Mmmm...this sounds similar to my situation a few years ago where I was severely depressed and continued at work until I was pulled into the office and spoken to about my behaviour, I had got completely paranoid about work situations and began to see things that weren't there...people talking about me etc, the conversation made me realise just how out of hand my depression had got and so I got help....was admitted for three months and boy was I glad...terrible state of mind.

Of course this might be depression or traits of a personality disorder...I think she needs help especially if her behaviour is becoming disruptive.

Simon
 
G

Gray Area

New member
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Messages
3
Thanks everyone for your input. Just a quick update... my employee has been to see her doctor today and has now been signed off work for two weeks - I think with stress. I'm taking this as a good sign and am hopeful that she's going to be able to get the help she needs. I'll give it a few days and then give her a call to see how she's feeling and if there's anything I can do.
Once again, thanks for the support.
 
iffybob

iffybob

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 20, 2009
Messages
4,858
Location
England
Hi

A rest sounds good, at least instigating them getting help was taken out of your hands,.. that is always an akward thing to do....

Take care ... boB ... :)
 
SimonB

SimonB

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 10, 2010
Messages
938
Location
United Kingdom
Nice to see she has a boss that cares too...

Nice to see that she has a manager that has some insight, would have been difficult for you to carry on though...you know manager/friend roles never work in situations like this.

More managers like this please!!

Simon(y)
 
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