• Welcome! It’s great to see you. Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life.

    If you'd like to talk with people who know what it's like

Time off work - need advice?



New member
Aug 21, 2019
Hi all,

I was diagnosed with depression and GAD in August. I lost around a stone in weight over a couple of months and had chronic insomnia, vomiting and low-mood. I was also having panic attacks frequently. I started on antidepressants and they have been incredible. They've really helped my low mood but I'm still having panic attacks - which I think may be work-stress related.

I work for the NHS in Psychology myself and currently I'm under a massive amount of stress to complete a certain number of mental health assessments within a very short period as we've been commissioned. I've been told to do this alone as we can't recruit another 3 members of staff (they left suddenly) which has meant I'm constantly bombarded with calls, requests and recently complaints due to the time for reports to be completed (I'm part-time). I'm not really qualified to deal with all of these clients and don't have a supervisor at present. I've found myself constantly being mentioned in emails and managers being linked in with criticism because I've missed calls and haven't responded to people in time. I had to take 2 weeks off work in August with GAD as I was going days on end with sleeping and eating - I ended up being signed off by my GP. I've met with all my managers and the head of our borough this week, who are all disgusting with my caseload and amount of pressure but there's going to be a several month gap until new people can be hired. At present, I've found myself making admin mistakes and finding it impossible to manage everything even when working 12 hours a day. The panic attacks have started again and vomiting (which my GP has diagnosed as anxiety induced) and I'm sleeping for on average 4 hours per night. I've had several managerial meeting but nothing seems to be resolved and I've found the vomiting and palpitations are pretty much constant at the moment. I'm really struggling to sit-still at all.

I know that if I go off sick, none of these assessments will be done which will likely make the anxiety worse but I'm really struggling to know what to do in this situation. I suppose I'm a bit stuck because I know if I'm signed off then I'll worry continuously about the clients who aren't being seen, but I know that at the moment I'm making mistakes and unable to manage all of this which is then leading to more criticism and anxiety worsening.

If anyone has been in a similar situation, I would really really appreciate the advice.


Well-known member
May 5, 2019
I havent been in a similar position but I just want to say that I think you need to look out for you. You've already said this is causing you to make some mistakes and it's really no surprise. You are overloaded and overworked, alongside a place that is currently understaffed! It's completely unfair and unrealistic expectations that are being put on you.

If you were to be signed off, you sign yourself off mentally as well. It's none of your concern about the clients (I know it's great that you do care enough to be concerned about that), it's the managers concern. You being off will force them to do something, because they cant not have your role filled, surely?

No job is worth making yourself unwell for. Your health is more important.