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Carers UK Forum • I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.
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I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2015 8:52 pm
by Yvonne E.H
Hi, I'm Yvonne, I'm new here... I recently gave up work (well October 2014) to look after my mother full time as her carer... It was a decision made much easier by my employers and colleagues who basically forced my hand, they weren't that compassionate as with regards to my circumstances or with regards to my ongoing depression, so I handed my notice in, I would have been sacked if I didn't anyway and lost most of the friends that I had worked with for thirteen and a half years... They left me feeling a bit of a cow because on the day I left I walked out of the store and nobody said goodbye, they didn't let me have a leaving do, I had to attend someone else's and they brought me a bunch of flowers and a mug... Yes a mug, I have certainly been one of those... apparently nobody wanted to give to a collection because when I left the store without so much as a goodbye, I went out of my way to publicly tell them all exactly what I thought of them... I have five friends left out of the whole store, I was bothered, I was very bothered as I say I suffer with depression.. I still sometimes think it was me that was in the wrong, but one thing I can say is it's been liberating, it's been confidence building too, it took many years but I found as someone with low confidence issues, it is actually possible to tell people what you think and it's not the end of the world. I have enough worries with my mothers health and my own health issues to worry about what the naysayers think of me... Have found looking after my mother so difficult. I struggle with her health and I struggle with the fact that at 47 going on 48 years old I see this as my life with no way out, no release, we struggle to get by financially but we muddle through, we're a team.. trouble is being single and the age I am I sometimes think life has passed me by... I am hoping to find some hope and inspiration here on this site and talk to people like myself, and people who are and have been in my position and understand me, because I just don't feel that people get me and as for caring, they don't get it... well that's me, long winded and talk the hind legs off a donkey. slow to start but once started you can not shut me up. Anyhow I've gone the long distance route and just wanted to say Hi to everyone.

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:11 pm
by Melly1
Hi Yvonne and welcome,

The way you were treated by your work colleagues was abysmal. It sounds like constructive dismissal to me, however I'm not an expert. If you wanted to find out you could contact ACAS.

Caring isn't easy, something most of us on here know firsthand. However, you can share your experiences and share tips with fellow carers on here.

The effect caring has on the carer is discussed too and many of share the feeling that life is passing us by.


Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:22 pm
by bowlingbun
Hi Yvonne, I agree, go to ACAS and find out about Constructive Dismissal. It sounds like they were horrible to you, you owe them no favours. (In one famous case involving a carer the lady concerned received very substantial compensation, because carers are "disabled by association" - and I suspect your employers didn't know their Employment Law.
What is the matter with mum? Ask Social Services to do a "Carers Assessment" and this will give you the opportunity of discussing services available to help you. I'd suggest as a minimum that you asked for one afternoon a week off, if you are doing a lot of caring. My mum has just died, I started doing things to help her as a teenager, she died when I was a pensioner!

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2015 10:26 pm
by Yvonne E.H
Hi Yvonne here, thankyou for your kind words, Mum has diverticulitis, and osteo and rheumatoid arthritis and copd... I did think about the constructive dismissal route, especially when during a disciplinary I was told they didn't have enough evidence to proceed with things but if I wasn't leaving it may have been a different story.. I had just returned from having two cataract operations and was accused of calling the supervisor a nasty name, this accusation was passed on by one person who supposedly heard it with no witnesses, this all happened six months prior to my returning to work... I can remember the day it happened was when the supervisor gave me a rota with forced overtime on three days and my day off taken away from me, her saying it wasn't up for discussion and me leaving the store in tears... they were very understanding people... lol.. I had been going to work unable to see what I was doing, couldn't even see to cross the road, I was constantly informed about the needs of the business, even though I had health issues and so did my mother, anyhow a weekend came and went. The supervisor and I had words after the weekend and it was agreed we would draw a line under things, on the issue of me not being able to see she said well if you're ill you're ill you'll have to take time off, we cant make allowances, we already bend over backwards to accommodate you. Took her advice on board, took the time off, pushed for my two ops, had those went back to work six months later and during my return to work interview they started disciplinary procedures without any warning... Anyhow I did think about acas etc but I just got tired of fighting, and financially I couldn't have afforded to pursue it, I think you have to pursue it within a certain time frame anyway... but thankyou so much for your kind words and caring.

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 1:33 am
by MumWhoCares
Hi Yvonne, welcome and I have to say your old work colleagues sound like a really unpleasant bunch for the most part. I have come to the conclusion now that when people behave badly it says a lot more about them than it does about me and I try not to let it get to me to much - easier said than done but I've been on the receiving end of some pretty appalling people over the years (and for some reason being a carer does seem to bring out the worst in some other people, for some reason) and I have got thicker skinned over time, although some things still bother me.

It's very tough and it makes me both sad and angry that we live in a society where people who make sacrifices for the people they love are derided and looked down on but as far as I'm concerned we should all be very proud of the things we do and remind ourselves every day that we're doing a great job and should be applauded for it (after all, no-one else will do that for us!). I hope you find the forum helpful.

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 6:30 am
by Henrietta
Hi Yvonne
Welcome and well done moving on to a new chapter in life. I'm also 47 and gave up my career for the caring world . It is a hard move at the time but has really turned out for the best in my case and I am sure it will will for you. Don't dwell on teh end of your careeer- look forward and find ways to enjoy your new freedoms. There are plenty of other decent people out there to make friends with and we are NOT past it at 47 :idea:

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:36 am
by Anne001

Welcome to the Forum. There are lots of us here in similar shoes to yourself.

Yes, it sounds like a terrible situation at work. Now what is important though is you and mum. It may be worth contacting Carers UK Adviceline (sometimes easier by email) to check that you are getting all the benefits you are entitled to.

Very tough being a carer even though it is the most important job in the world. Oh, and for the record, I am 52 and my caring finished a couple of months ago when mum died and now I wonder what next?

Looking forward to "chatting"' anne x

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:56 am
by Juggler
Hi Yvonne
Welcome to the forum. Lots of lovely people here to give you virtual support as a carer. Join in anywhere. The Roll Call is our version of a quick hello over the garden fence!
I also walked away from a job without goodbyes and having been suffering from depression. I remembered it as I read your experiences. Several months later they invited me back to give me a gift at the end of one of their staff meetings. I have never worn the necklace I was given and didn't stay in touch with anyone. Sometimes it's best to move on and focus on your own life.

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:21 am
by Yvonne E.H
I am so relieved to read your kind replies... The way things have panned out I thought it was just me, thought to myself, they're in the right and I'm in the wrong. It's not nice to know people have these experiences but it is a relief on my part to know that others have been there too... Even after ten years of looking after mum I still struggled to see myself as a carer I'm getting my head around it a bit more lately though... My mind set said, I'm not a carer I just look after my mother... Such a relief to find a site like this where people understand and have had the same experience.. Be assured that if you don't see me posting on here on a daily basis I will certainly be checking in regularly to be amongst like minded people and see if anyone needs my support too. Being there for each other is what it's all about after all, we only get one life, lets get through this together, without regrets and minimising the pain at the same time.

Re: I'm Yvonne, I'm new here.

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:51 am
by caravanj
Hello Yvonne & welcome to the forum.

Your ex-employer would probably fight a constructive dismissal claim which is harder to prove that unfair dismissal in the first place.

From what you've said they would probably contest it every inch of the way & would, no doubt, make upsetting allegations at a Tribunal so you've probably made the best choice for you in not bothering.

When I retired after nearly 40 years I calculated that my staff must have put 50p max each into my retirement pressie with not even a 'goodbye & thank you' phone call from the top-tier management team.

When the watch eventually failed I took great delight in smashing it with a 20lb lump hammer.

Please move forward & don't let your ex-colleagues spoil your life because they're not worth Jack what's his name.

Lol !!