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    Falling into the rabbit hole of depression
    An_256867 posted:
    I am a 37 year old teacher who is currently being in the process of loosing my job for false accusations made by my administration. The stress of fighting for my job is starting to strongly affect my heath. I have stopped taking my medication, been trying to get support from the teacher's union, personal attorneys, and family yet I am getting no support from any of them.

    I have been diagnosed for 7 years now and yet been to get around all the drama in my life to focus on the dealing with the MS or what is yet to come with the MS.

    How do I deal with al this stress coming at me at once. I have given up so much for teaching and now that is being taken away from me in away that is can legally keep from education for ever.

    I have given up everything to teach, a personal life, friendships, and now my health. What do I do now that all is being taken away and as a result I am slowly hurting myself by not taking my medication.

    To date my life is fighting for a job that no longer wants me and an illness that I am to depressed to deal with the pain from the medication (so I have not been taking it).
    hackwriter responded:
    You are at a very tough crossroads, and one that I can relate to on some level. I did a similar thing after recovering from my first MS attack: Focused completely on work and after-hours research, lost my sex drive and any desire to date, and had no social life whatsoever. Doing all of that, focusing on only those things that I deemed important, did keep me from falling into a deep depression.

    But after a few years, work stress took its toll on me and I was hounded out of my job, I resigned before I got fired, the hostility was too much for me. I worked for four more years at mostly temp jobs, but then had to retire on Social Security Disability. It was a tough process, having to find my value in things other than being employed. After I retired, I found a second career I could do at home part-time. Something I liked to do and for which I already had skills.

    Focusing all your energies on your teaching might have been your coping tool, too, and now that is being taken away. And doing that probably saved you from falling into a deep depression, too. Now you've got to think about how to take care of yourself. Think about walking away from the battle, living on unemployment or whatever means are at your disposal.

    Think about this situation not as a negative, but as an opportunity to reinvent yourself. You have skills you can use in a different way. Try to give yourself time to discover the possibilities.

    And you can't do this alone, you need support, friends, love. Open yourself up to that need and draw people back into your life.

    You need to take care of yourself in terms of disease management, too. Getting back into taking your meds and staying compliant is a gesture that reinforces the belief that you have value and are worth taking care of in the best ways possible. If you don't feel that way right now, then fake it until you can make it. It works, I've done it myself more than once.

    Join MS communities and share, share, share. Isolating yourself is going to fuel your depression.

    Hope this helps. I wish you well.

    arianna10 replied to hackwriter's response:
    Thank you so much for your insight, people around here are tired of hearing me talk about it. I think I have deep down always known I was going to have to leave, but because all I have done is teach that includes all my friends being in education. Although a lot of this drama is supported by my so called friends. As a teacher we do not pay into social security so I think I am going to have to be fired (something that has never happened to me before) so I can collect unemployment. Again thank you I really needed to hear it from someone who went through the same thing and I think finding new friends and new activities I might get a stronger foundation of support. Can I ask what job you are doing at home? I am also going to need an income and I have looked all over the internet but am not sure about what I have read about the work from home jobs.

    Thank you
    arianna10 replied to hackwriter's response:
    Does it take a while to get others to respond to postings? I am having the same problem in my real life surroundings when it comes to get people to answer my questions.
    jules1202 replied to arianna10's response:
    I am sorry you are struggling so much! That is a lot going on all at once! Do you have a local MS support group that you could look to to get together with people face to face? Depression is a very nasty beast to struggle with alone so Kim is right, share share share because it does help. If not a local MS support group what about a church singles group (assuming you are single?) or other group to help break you out of the isolation and connect you with other people besides just people in education.

    What about part time job's like tutoring or working with children with special needs outside of school? Are either of those possibilities?
    If the medicine you are on isn't helping can you go in to your dr about a switch or at least an additional med to help with the pain and depression?

    Above all, take a deep breath and remember "This too shall pass" and you are going to make it through this situation! Hang in there and don't forget to be good to yourself
    hackwriter replied to arianna10's response:
    Hi Arianna,

    Sorry I didn't respond to you sooner, my mom is in hospice dying of lung cancer and I do the MS patient advocate thing on another site besides this one. Jules gave you some good advice.

    The way I found part-time work was by doing what I'm doing here on WebMD. I joined this site five years ago, initially to find a support group. Since I was a published writer and used to doing research, I quickly fell into a leadership position, answering questions posed by newly-diagnosed MS patients and old-timers who weren't internet-savvy or whose physical impairments prevented them from spending a lot of time on the computer.

    I also created a blog on Google blogspot about living with MS. A few years ago, a marketing group found my work here and on my blog and offered me a position as a patient consultant. The other MS patient advocates I met there recommended me for a paid gig on There, I give advice, help to moderate the site, and write essays about living with MS. I continue to be offered other kinds of advocate opportunities. I can get as involved in advocacy as I want.

    I guess the moral of the story is to start doing something in a volunteer capacity that interests you. If you stick with it and meet others who are doing the same thing, opportunities will open up for you.

    Hope this helps.

    arianna10 replied to jules1202's response:
    Thank you, I do need to find a support group (the stress has made me so tired all I do is sleep now) I was doing to the MS support group here but was not finding much support. I am single so maybe a church group or a singles group might be an option.

    I am just having a hard time knowing I have wanted to teach as a little girl and have spend ever waking moment to make that dream come true. I know live in a small community where my name is being destroyed. due to my name being ruined I will never be able to find a job and I have bought a house and stared to put down roots.

    The medication I have been taken has been working great and keeping the paralyzing affects MS at bay, but with work and depression I stopped the medication because I don't want to deal with the extra pain in the mornings. Its hard enough to go to work as it is the last thing I can continue to deal with is the sever flu feels in the morning.

    Thank you for your advice I will use it and try to find a different support group. I will also keep going to work and do my best, just keep feeling like I am getting hit with negative after negative. I think what is keeping me going is that the school year is almost over I am will not be going back. The last thing is how am I going to pay by bills with a job or even get my meds with health coverage.

    Thanks for listening to me vent. Arianna
    arianna10 replied to hackwriter's response:
    I think you are right a lot of people have informed me that I should leave work and start volunteering. My main worry is paying my bills and have medical insurance. This is the funny part most of my bill and increase in medical is because of this mess. School is almost out and if they make finish the year I will not return next year. I will start volunteering and see where that leads, if anything it will get my mind off the drama.

    Thanks again Arianna
    jules1202 replied to arianna10's response:
    Just checking on you to see how you are doing Arianna. I hope this week is going better for you!!!
    arianna10 replied to jules1202's response:
    thank you for checking on me. I am still here but work has even gotten worse, I lost my job and they are making false claims which could lead the state to take my credentials. At this point I am just taking it one day at a time.

    thanks for the concern!
    jules1202 replied to arianna10's response:
    Hang in there!! Have you found an MS group or a singles group to get involved in?

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