Too tired

I'm classified 'severe' COPD with 30% lung function pre-inhaler and 47% post-inhaler plus asthma and mild bronchiectasis. I've been in hospital needing life support and bi-pap every winter for the last three years. I really feel too tired to keep working (can't remember the last time I slept through the night as coughing keeps me awake) and too young to retire (53) and don't really see a way forward. And I just wanted to moan!

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16 Replies

  • It sounds as if you need to talk, Struggle. I dont really know what help and advice you have had. Perhaps you could voice your problems to the BLF helpline (click on the red balloon top right hand corner) Being "fed up" needs to be discussed. Have you had PR classes. Anyway, my best wishes from Annieseedx

  • H I your not moaning you are stating a fact you are tired and cant see how you can have the means to retire do you have a company pension ? I think its dreadful that you have the added burden of worrying about work take care

    Dorothy xxx

  • Hi Struggle it sounds like you need to stop working or go part time for health reasons. Chat with your doctor, your employer, benefits advisors in your area, the BLF helpline (mon to fri 10am to 5pm 03000 030 555).

    The things you may want to think about and perhaps questions you may want to put to yourself......

    How valuable is your health. Can you still manage work if you have poor health. Is continuing to work affecting your health. Will it be any different if you changed jobs? Could you manage part time ok. Would you sacrifice your health in order to keep working. Would you sacrifice your work in order to preserve your health? Will stopping work help to preserve your health.

    These are tough questions to ask yourself but sometimes they are helpful in order to see things more clearly.

    All good wishes whatever you decide.


  • BLF Phones are now open 9am 5pm

  • You're not moaning sweetheart - you have a lot to cope with and know you have some decisions to make. I hope someone comes along soon who have been in the same position as you, as there must be some.

    As an aside I note you say you can't sleep because coughing keeps you awake - just wondering if you do lung clearance physio?

    Blakey has posed some questions you will need to think about. Do you feel in a position to talk to your HR or is that an option you prefer not to do at present? Financially it might be an idea to speak to an expert in benefits BLF, Welfare Rights, CAB or DIAL to discuss their opinion re entitlement to benefits/allowances. It might be beneficial too to talk through your concerns re working/health with your GP and/or your consultant.

    Whatever you decide I wish you well. Please let us know how you get on.

    love cx

  • Oh you are entitled to moan. Life can be a damn struggle with Copd. My husband suffers with severe Copd and he too gets very down. He is working full time and is dreading winter.

    If you are coughing so much at night perhaps you could go to the docs to check your meds. Please get a flu jab and pneumonia jab.

    Please go to the doctor and discuss your meds and options. Can you talk to work about your concerns?

    You could ring the helpline too. Wishing you the very best TAD x x

  • Hi Struggle.

    I worked full-time up until just before last Christmas when I was seriously ill with pnuemonia and spent 6 weeks in hospital. I`m 60 and needed to work because I support myself and although I have a small pension it isn`t near enough to cover the bills. Work sent me to see an occ health assessor after I had been off work for 6 months and they recommended a phased return to work. However when I last saw my consultant at the hospital the tests showed my lung function to only be 22%. My mind was backwards and forwards about whether I should try and go back to work, finance v health but the lung function result made my mind up that I should not go back. I`m on the benefits route which is a worry but I made the right decision and knew that when I was working before I fell ill that it was all getting too much for me. I was coming home from work at the end of the day absolutely shattered, too tired sometimes to make myself a decent meal, too tired to look after my appearance like I used to and too tired to keep my house clean and tidy as I like it. I care about myself nowadays and feel a lot better, although I do have my bad days like others. I plan my meals, keep active as much as possible and I`m in my fourth week of pulmonary rehabilitation which is great.

    I don`t think you are moaning at all, just worried.

    Sue x

  • Hi, I understand this fully. In December I had a hysterectomy. That worked out fine but my lungs have been a mess ever since. I have gone back to work, but simply want to crawl up in a corner and go to sleep. I try not to fuss. 7:00 at night and I am ready for bed. My husband just thinks that I have no interest in him, but honestly, there is nothing that excites me and everything takes effort. I am always cold. A hot shower feels wonderful. I mean really hot..... I've gone to the doctor, but no one feels that there is a problem. I cough all the way through a phone conversation. I'm given an inhaler and a nebulizer. That is only a band aid. Like you said I do not have any energy, I hate dressing up and just as soon stay in my pj's with a blanket... Every little chore makes me exhausted, but I try to hide my uncomfortableness, no one likes a complainer... So you guys are not alone and I feel as though it is just getting worse.

  • A dont want to put you on downer but i think you might have infection .. Coughing all the time and bushed sounds like it

    As far as moaning ask BLF modaratiors is very much part of our condions so feel free

    Cheers all the best hope you start feeling better

  • I had to retire on health grounds (now down to FEV1 19%) as, like you, I was just so tired. It effects us all differently though. Lots of good stuff here already. And remember, your employer has a duty to make "reasonable adjustments" to help you stay at work, if that is what you choose to do. That might mean changing your duties slightly, moving to a downstairs office instead of having to go upstairs, offering you part time hours or the opportunity to work from home. There are lots of areas they can look at with you. I wish you lots of luck.

  • Thanks for all the supportive responses. My reply is shorter than I'd like as I'm finger typing on my phone! In brief, I've no pension to speak of though am seeing a financial adviser this evening to see if anything can be salvaged; I live alone and so part time hours wouldn't bring in enough to pay the bills; my employers have been very accommodating and I have a desk job so it's sedentary but that doesn't stop my tiredness; all meds in order though coughing (which I always do) has worsened with this week's damp weather. I suspect that mentally at least I'd find it easier to deal with if I could see a way to retire or reduce my hours by 55 - another 13 years of work certainly won't fly! Again, my thanks to you all.

  • Oh shouldn't have to be in this position regarding your understandable health worries and your work situation. I feel for you as I too live on my own, have severe asthma and panlobular emphysema; have also been in the ICU on life support twice.

    I'm in my late 50's, live alone and am medically retired. Don't mean to sound depressing but it seems like you got way too many demands on you and it's understandable you're feeling so tired.

    I think Sue makes a good point - it's like finance V health - and you may be entitled to certain benefits and able to step down from the work situation. Look after yourself whatever you decide and all the best, Lovelight x

  • Just a quick hallo! My heart goes out to you,it really must feel a little scary.I wouldn't call it moaning at all!

    Just remember we are always here to lend an ear,& give advice,when we can,

    Love Wendells xxx

  • I got a good idea how you feel has

    i have got 5 caravans which we rent out ? Up till the beginning of this year but now i can not do them as i get out of breath just on

    A simply thing .i feel useless and feed up so going from. Being acted to what i am now is hard.but like some one told me

    You are still here and only you can work at your own pace and

    Deal with what is to come .good luck but living is better than work

    There is always something around. The corner .

  • Just to conclude this post, I had a meeting with HR today who have agreed me working from home 2 days a week, which should help enormously! I'm so very relieved. Sometimes, life turns up with nice things it seems :-)

  • That`s good news. Hope it works well. x

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