Fibromyalgia Action UK
38,710 members50,974 posts

Work and Fibro or M.E and a general rant

How do people get on regarding work? I've an appointment this afternoon with H.R because I want to talk over options that may be available to me. I don't feel capable or competent to do my job any more. I was off for 6 months last year (i was labelled as depressed). I got C.B.T through work, I seen a therapist myself privately and I only went back to work because the anti-depressant had kicked in (3rd change of prescription).

I feel the symptoms I have now are the same as they were then; the only difference being the depression is not as profound, and I would put that down to the anti-depressants as well as the C.B.T.

I'm a Receptionist, but I also data input. I made such a mess of an inputting job a few weeks back, luckily I had an appointment with Occupational Health the next day and I was she who suggested going to my G.P as my description of events made her think that Fibro might be at play. I'm still waiting for the Rheumatologist appointment so I'm still very up in the air

I've known for years there was something; couldn't put my finger on it but I could just feel that everything wasn't quite right. Ailment after ailment to only be sent away from the doctors surgery with "we can't find anything" diagnosis or "we'll get a specialist appointment for you" only for them to say "we can't find anything".

I've been made out to be a hypochondriac for years. One of the doctors at the surgery was so miffed with me because my response to her suggestion that all I need to do was go for long walks with "I'd love to do that, but I know that there's no chance because I'm just so tired and lethargic all the time". Her response was "Well I just believe you have a completely unfulfilled life". I broke down into torrents of tears and ended up walking out with a prescription for anti-depressants. At the time, my under active thyroid hadn't came to light so having tablets that made me sleepy just pushed me over the edge and I was bedded for 3 weeks. I wasn't depressed when I went in but I certainly was when I walked out.

I've got I.B.S, mild colitis; I've had cameras up the way and down the way, biopsies for bowel cancer (nothing there thankfully), neuralgia twice on one side of my face, acupuncture at the doctors surgery for chronic neck pain.Visits to the hospital too numerous to mention and yet it was an Occupational Health nurse that nudged my doctor into realising that Fibro could actually capture all of my ailments.

I bet if I had the money and could go private, I could have had this diagnosis years ago. xx

7 Replies

well in a nut shell for me i just dont work which is a shame i loved my job as a courier and now ihave not worked since 07 which is frustrating but i am so up and down daily i could not hold down a job no onwe would employ me lol but if you are working goodon you i suppose if you explain fully take with you lots of info on fibro etc then let the company decide how they want to treat you and your condition in there work place hopefully they will offer you a package that will suit both you and them with love to you diddle x


I'm like Diddle, I am unable to work. I had symptons of fibro for ages before it was diagnosed but now that I look back all the pointers were there. I had tried physio, acupunture, counselling inc. CBT and nothing worked. In the beginning you tend to look at each of the symptoms as stand alone but hindsight is a wonderful thing. I also suffer with Lymphodeama following breast cancer and a lot of the symptoms of that overlap with fibro so it took ages to sort out what was what.

I worked in HR in the NHS which was a very busy job and I tried all sorts, long days and shorter weeks, reduced days, reduced hours, you name it and I tried it. In addition to the pain etc that goes with fibro I was coming down with every infection going and had permanent cold sores for months at a time which showed my body was not coping. I eventually got to the stage when I woke up and couldn't move out of my bed so knew it was time to do something. I spent the next year changing jobs, hours etc. without it making the least bit of difference so in the end I had to come to the decision to give up work. It wasn't an easy decision as the worries about money etc. then kick in but I get by and at least don't have the stress of holding down a job.

I am fortunate to have a GP who is very supportive and without her and the Lymphoedema support nurse I don't know where I would have been. They have both supported me totally in giving up work and have supported my claims for ESA and DLA so I suppose I am lucky. I realise all GP's are not as supportive but perhaps you could find one in your surgery you can build a rapport with and stick to that one whereever possible.

If you make a note of all your symptoms and then compare them with the criteria used to diagnose fibro then this could be a starting point for discussion with your GP. Good luck with your Occ Health appointment, take care. Angela xx


for the first year I tried so hard to get back to work as a community carer, my job was kept open for me for 2 yrs, but I had to face reality, I could barely walk, had balance problems was incontinent etc so had to say farewell to a job I loved, I hope you decide whats right for you dont be forced into anything, also get an assessment


i havent worked since 2007. i was an assistant complex manager on a busy little holiday park in scarborough and just thought my exhaustion, pain & numbness etc was due to the fact i was working 100+ hrs a week and that i was about 6 stone overweight. i had yrs of my dr telling me my weight was the issue and after i kept going back (got to the point i had 2/3 appointments a week) they refered me to rheumatologist who said i needed to cut my work or find a less stressful job. heartbroken wasnt the word. i then went to work in a call centre and 8 hrs of sat on an uncomfy chair tipped me over the edge as it were. they were really good at first (rearranging shifts, better chair etc) but after a while we all realised that our arrangement wasnt working and we mutually agreed to terminate my contract.

am now fighting for esa and am worse that ever with the stress.

as the other commenters suggest, dont let work force you to do anything you dont feel able to and hopefully you will come to an agreement which suits you xx


just weigh up your option, find out about benefits etc


I work for my local council, Area Supervisor overseeing school catering in 20 schools. My jobs half desk, half visiting the kitchens. Im waiting for an appointment with Occ Health, Im hoping they can supply a better chair for my computer. Im exhausted all the time and Im in agony with my feet and shoulders/neck by lunchtime each day. Im hoping I never have to go and run a kitchen again (which I have had to do in the past when there has been NO STAFF whatsoever to do it), because I just couldnt be on the go on my feet for 6+ hrs. Im managing at the moment, but I know the fibro's getting worse. I'll be in a proper mess if I have to give up work. My husband of 24yrs has had enough and left me and the kids at the end of January. Im just managing financially, but in 2 yrs time when my son has left college, the maintenance, tax credits and family allowance will stop, leaving me £550 a month worse off and I will have to sell the house and give him his cut. Sorry about the moan!


Everyone is entitled to a moan and by the sounds of it, its very justified. I'm just back from a meeting with H.R who were great. I should receive an e-mail from payroll telling me all the options and all the financial implications to go along with it. My partner doesn't really get this illness yet, I think he thinks its an extension of a case of the blues cause he works away now. We had quite the confrontation on the phone the other week because of how insensitive he was being. Apologies followed but the arguments take their toll and the symptoms get worse. I'm a great believer in everything happening for a reason and I can see a path that I wanted to take in my 20s that could now be what I move forward on to.

As crap as things look and feel for you right now, take time to yourself and listen to your wants rather than anyone else's. Treat it like a mid life crisis. See what comes out the other side for you. <3


You may also like...