This is the lowest I've felt since mum passed away in April.
I know it's a new situation, which is bound to be unsettling. I know it takes time and adjustment. I know I'm probably over-reacting to some of the more negative things that have happened this week. I know I need to give things time, etc, etc, etc.
But my gut instinct isn't good. I dread going in. Today, I'm working with the shouty matriarch. I'm just glad it's the weekend.
I certainly don't feel like I want too much more of this.
I've been reading some of your recent posts and I can emphasise with some of your dilemmas. But cannot provide any constructive help or advice.
I'm feeling very low myself, so I will lay out my recent problems.
I'm very short of money so I'm working full time trying to find work that actually pays.
The multiple agencies helping me are making matters worse.
1. Job centre is ordering me to do 35 hours directed and specific job search related activities or they will sanction me.
2. One activity is twice weekly meetings with a subsidiary of REED which "helps" the long term unemployed (unemployable). I dread the meetings there. There is no privacy or confidentiality when discussing matters. The advisors are bullies and in an open office with people so close together I don't need to eavesdrop to hear what other people are saying.
This week there was a client on his first meeting, an elderly gentleman looking very feeble and vulnerable explaining that he has multiple health problems such as diabetes etc. The advisor shouted at him.
ARE YOU ON MEDICATION ?
ARE YOU TAKING YOUR MEDICATION ?
THEN YOU'RE FIT TO WORK !
3. I have another work related advisor from a mental health charity. I should be meeting him once a week. But he has cancelled and missed meetings. I suspect he has personal problems. His suggested is self employment. Since my past employment history is so "colourful".
4. Local council has forced me to attend regular work search related meetings or they will stop paying my council tax support. His big idea is to do volunteering.
So I'm getting a lot of help and advice. But little results from it.
My big problems are lack of recent references.
Big gaps in employment.
Explaining or covering up bad physical health and illnesses. Such as heart failure, anaemia.
Explaining mental health problems such as my autism, breakdowns and multiple suicide attempts. Or should I cover these up and make no mention of them?
I've encountered a lot of these issues myself in the past. I was on ESA for a long while, but failed a WCA and was automatically told to claim JSA instead. I appealed, then took it tribunal before I eventually won my case.
The organisation that I found to be most helpful when I started looking for work again was the Shaw Trust. MCCH were also very helpful. I'm not sure if you've approached either of these, but they might be worth looking at. In my experience, I've found it helpful to be open about my mental health issues. I certainly wouldn't want to go into a job without them being aware of these things - but I can understand why you might worry about it prejudicing your chances. As regards the other agencies and their attitude, well... it's not as if you have long employment gaps for no reason. Shaw Trust especially should be more sympathetic to you.
Check out, too - if you haven't already - the resources on this site.