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Education and Careers Work of any kind can get stressful at times. Ask in this forum if you need help with coursework, applications, and more.

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Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - October 26th 2011, 03:42 PM

[Edited]

I'll give you a bit of background info. I've been self harming since age 13, and have been in hospital i think 5 times since I turned 18 for overdoses, although I've probably overdosed about 50 or so times, just not seriously. I have currently been diagnosed with depression and as far as I am aware I have a possible diagnosis of borderline personality disorder, although I don't think that it's been put on my medical records for definate yet as they're still trying to figure out just how crazy I am. I currently see my care co-ordinator once every 2 weeks and am on the waiting list for DBT.

I am in the process of applying for a degree in adult nursing to start in September 2012. Entry onto the course is based on a successful interview, criminal records bureau check and an occupational health check. I'm only worried about the occupational health check as when I was offered a job within the NHS as a care worker last year, I failed my occupational health check on mental health grounds and the job offer was therefore retracted.

Whats the likelihood of this happening again? Will it be more lenient where it's 3 years of education, rather than going straight into a job? and will the fact that I'm on the waiting list for DBT count in my favour? I don't want to go through the whole application process just to be turned away because I'm a loony.

Last edited by PSY; October 28th 2011 at 10:04 PM. Reason: Moved to the "Education and Careers" forum.
   
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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 1st 2011, 02:33 PM

all nursing careers will check for a mental health check and even the exam to get your licence to be a nurse and it will always come up but one thing you need to remember is that you need to take care of your health first
   
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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 1st 2011, 05:00 PM

It is really competitive to get onto a nursing degree since there is only a limited number of places. You may not be going straight into a job but the fact is you will be going straight onto placements as well as all the stress of uni work. You need to put yourself first and get yourself well before doing the course because all of the stress of it could make you more unwell. My house mate does nursing and it is really stressful and she often has lots of work to do as well as placements. Whatever you decide I hope things work out for you


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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 2nd 2011, 03:46 PM

maybe I'll just get a job cleaning toilets. I don't fancy having my past scrutinised by some overpaid, obnoxious jerk or a doctor to have them declare me "mentally unstable and emotionally immature" again.
   
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Arrow Don't lose hope! - November 2nd 2011, 09:24 PM

Background story (bear with me):

I am in the process of applying to university to study Paediatric Nursing in 2012. I was diagnosed with OCD and depression in 2006 and had CBT for these, in addition to being put on meds. However, once I was discharged from CAMHS in 2007, I felt that this signified the start of my journey to recovery. Similarly, I am currently in the process of being weaned off my meds completely and therefore, when the time comes that I am not taking any, I will deem all my "mental health issues" as a past event. Therefore, should anything be discovered in my occupational health check, I will make the point that these issues are no longer with me and ask my doctor to back this up.


Is there any way you could do the same? Put your problems into past context? To be honest, I think this is the only way you stand a good chance of not being rejected again. All the time you are still having these issues, I don't know whether they will deem you mentally fit enough for the demanding job of nursing.

I really don't think you should give up your dream - definitely don't think about cleaning toilets for a living! Not when you have already put so much effort into your nursing career. Do you think that there is any way that between now and going to university, you could overcome your mental health issues? If not, would you be willing to wait another year or so, until you can put the issues into past context?


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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 2nd 2011, 10:21 PM

Wow, is this just in London or in the U.S. too? IMO it's an awful, deplorable practice. Though caregivers who have dealt with mental health problems can make some patients uncomfortable, I think fighting our "battles" is more an asset than a hindrance, even in psychological therapy. I will never disclose my history of depression to employers willingly, and if it is asked for, I will consider filing suit. Same with buying guns, I never mention depression or put it on the form.

Just reread your post Ella and I'm even more angry than before. "Depression" can be diagnosed by a general practitioner in 15mins, and yet it can ruin your entire life? That's fucking ludicrous! If all jobs screened for it, an additional 10% of Americans would be out of work, and we'd have a 20% unemployment rate.

Here's my perspective on the issue. If an official (though illegal in the U.S. I believe) background check is required, you're screwed for now. If not, LIE. Despite your problems Ella, you're a genuinely good person and I'd be happy to be your patient (no creepy innuendo intended). They will never find out if you don't tell anyone, and I believe you know yourself well enough to determine whether the ends justify the means in this case. As long as you're putting others first, a little untruthfulness is okay in my opinion.



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Last edited by Ghost On The Highway; November 2nd 2011 at 10:29 PM. Reason: Because I can.
   
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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 3rd 2011, 01:35 PM

I wouldn't be considered to be over my mental health issues as I took a nearly fatal overdose in June of this year and I'm waiting for DBT to try and help me with impulsivity, mood swings and generally being an annoying drain on society. I've also not been taking my pills like I should be recently which is now on my GP notes, which they will ask for to check that what I've put on the form is correct. I am under the impression that employers such as the NHS can refuse you a job where you would be in a position of care if your mental health is not satisfactory, so I'm guessing its the same for degree courses. It's illegal to do so for most jobs though as it is then classes as discrimination.
The stupid thing is that I'm generally a lot better when I'm focussing on other people and working as much as possible because it actually gives me something to work for and keeps my mind from wandering to other things.
   
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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 3rd 2011, 05:47 PM

You should still apply if it is what you want to do. What is the worst they can say really? I think if the worst came to the worst then they would just ask you to defer for a year but then you have got something to aim for and a reason to get better. But that is the worst thing that could happen they could accept you on the course maybe with extra support. I know when I applied for my course I had to see occupational health and I passed it even though I wasn't fully recovered. But I had improved a lot. Though the stress of it all made me end up in hospital and I had to take a year out. There is always options If it what you really what to do then don't let things stop you from doing it.


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Re: Mental illness and career oppurtunities? - November 4th 2011, 08:04 PM

Yeah, I might apply anyway. I've heard you have to be 2 years self harm free to be a nurse, so I presume it's the same to get onto the course. You're right. The worst thing that can happen is I'll get told to reapply when I'm better. I need something to work towards.
   
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