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Ella.x Offline
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Name: Ella
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Location: England

Posts: 1,461
Join Date: February 24th 2009

swimming - August 15th 2012, 01:38 PM

I work with adults who have learning disabilities and support them in activities. One of them goes swimming weekly. So far, I have managed to weasel my way out of going swimming with her. I have two problems with going swimming:

1. I self harm (am trying to stop) and have scars from my wrists up to my shoulders, all over my stomach, all up my thighs and from my ankles up to my knees. Most of the scars are very prominent, in varying shades of pink and are raised. It is obvious that they are from self harm. The service user who goes swimming has a mild learning disability and a personality disorder and would label me as weak if she saw them. I know this because she has previously made comments about someone we saw in the street who had self harm scars.

2. I have a fear of swimming pools. Just the thought of them makes me feel huge amounts of anxiety. If I see a swimming pool on tv, I have to change the channel. My fear is mostly based on bacteria and other things found in swimming pools (hairs or plasters floating about in the water etc) Even if the pool is completely clean, all I can think about is all the people in the pool and that they're sweating and putting their feet in the water (I also have a fear of feet) and start getting worried about whether the people are hygeinic or not.

I put this under self harm as I'm sure if I had to, I could suck up my fears, but I can't just get rid of my scars. I'm just wondering how to address this with my manager and whether I should only tell him about the fear and risk him telling me to suck it up or tell him about both things or just the self harm. I'm not really concerned about telling him about my fear because I know it's ridiculous and can laugh about it. I am however terrified about telling him about my self harm, especially since I've just had 6 weeks off work for depression and anxiety and don't want him to think that I can't do my job properly. Help, anyone?
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