I am female. 58 and am currently an unemployed admin worker. I have suffered from depression for most of my life. Fortunately I have had a few periods where it has been in abeyance for years at a time (apart from minor spells)
What brought this on for me again is my last job working for the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) in the Contact Centre. I spent 8 hours a day chained to a desk with a headset on reading mandatory text from a computer! There were targets everywhere ie we had only 22 minutes for a call when some can last 40 minitues. Every 2 weeks we had a meeting with our line manager and some of the stats they produced were unbelieveable - how many seconds we were on the phone to if we managed to take our breaks on time.
It was always a no win situation and no one could meet all the targets. I hated every day I was there.....but did it for 5 and a half years.
I was bullied by a manager and went off sick with depression and stress, followed by another absence a couple of years later for the same reason. I got official warnings and was eventually sacked. I was suicidal some of the time and did try a couple of times. This totally destroyed my self-esteem and I have no confidence at all now. I have been out of work for nearly 3 years now and don't think I will ever be able to work again.
I did claim ESA when I lost my job but they wanted me to go to ATOS within 6 weeks and I couldn't get my head around the interview and the long journey - 2 buses a train and long walk. I was suffering from depression for Gods sake....how did they expect me to cope with that? So I signed on JSA instead. Now trying to prove I am looking for work is difficult too. I live in fear my benefits will be stopped as I live alone.
Depression has come back full force and I live with it daily now. Most of the time I am able to cope but very recently had a 3 week spell where I felt especially awful and couldn't do anything. Nothing seemed to bring it on it just happened. I had no self worth and was unable to function but I still have to look for work.
I knew my job was killing me but I had no choice I have to work and there is little work round here that I can do. I also have some health problems apart from depression - COPD (chronic obstructive pulmunory disease) (lung problems) and a chronic back problem.
OMG! sorry to have ranted on for so long...just wanted to say hi to everyone.