Advice please on lost confidence and return to work

Hi everyone

I've had depression for over 25 years which I've coped with well. But after a heart attack Dec 2015 and three ops for stents, I just can't seem to go back to work . I have always gone back too soon and now am not sure whether to call it a day. I really like my job but there's a big feeling of BUT.

Has anyone else experienced this? I feel like a failure because after every return to work I've needed more stents. How do any of us decide to call it a day?

18 Replies

  • Wel hello , one assumes you work for someone else's ??? . In which case they will be very sorry if you lose your life through your dedication !! And immediately set about replacing you . You don't say where your from ??? . If it's the Uk then the rules of employment will apply.

    Have you done cardiac rehab ?? This would help you build your confidence. Also can you not return to work on limited hours or days ??? .having exhausted all those possibilities you may deceide it's time to hang up your boots , work wise.

    Do you have a family ???

    Finally your not a failure your alive and I imagine wish to stay that way.

    I hope this is of some assistance.

    My regards


  • Hi Kerry

    Thank you so much for your response. My mum sadly has dementia so I have lost a great support. Work has been amazing which I'm grateful for. Occupational Health told me yesterday to have another 8 weeks off and try some CBT with a post-traumatic stress expert. Appointment made for next week.

    Thank you


  • I have survived two cardiac events. Like Kerry is suggesting - Is it possible for you to return on a part-time schedule? All or nothing can be overwhelming for sure. Above all else take care of yourself. Do you have a support system? If not, you may want to find a support group and our some type of counseling to help you figure out how to handle this. Please feel free to contact me. Best wishes.

  • Thank you. Have tonight arranged counselling to stArt next week.

    Hadn't thought about a support group but will investigate tomorrow.

    Really appreciate your response.


  • I had my heart episode Dec 2015 as well and had one stent placed. Cardiac rehab helped me regain confidence as I had always been physically fit. Unfortunately for me genetics played a big part as both my father and grandfather had heart issues as well. I too went through some depression but turned to faith, prayer, family and friends for help during my difficult time. This is the first time I've responded to anyone but always found reading responses from others very helpful. God Bless and hang in there.

  • Bless you for your response, so appreciate it. Want to find myself again.


  • So I don't know your age but if you can afford it then retire.

    I went back to work after my heart attack and I just didn't want to work. I could see no purpose other than money and social side. I used to be well into my job 110% kind of guy. 24/7. But after I just didn't see the point. So I checked my finances and established that with another years working I could give up. Not the richest in the world but enough for me and wife. Best thing I ever did.

  • Hi Andyman, I'm going to look into my finances . Want a dog to help with my activity level. I'm 56 now and hope to be able to return to work and plan for my early retirement. Thank you Jo

  • Hi, still feeling the sAme as 3 months ago despite cbt. I'm 56 now. Not expected back to work for another three months. Quitting work seems like such a massive decision.

  • CBT???? Sort not good at abbreviations

  • Cognitive behaviour therapy 😊. The thing is, both my therapists - and there have been two - think I shouldn't go back and this isn't helping or should I just go for broke?

  • Thanks

  • I too have struggled with depression for most of my life and had a cardio myopathy in May 2014. I received a pacemaker in August 2014. I was unable to work and put on disability for two years. When my disability played out, I was actually scared to get back into the workforce. I knew I would never be able to go back to teaching, as the hours and stress are just way too much to handle when your heart doesn't function at full capacity. However I was able to find a job in the school district that allows me to work in my specialization, socialize with people, and it makes me feel much more human. I'm a much happier person now. Maybe finding something similar to your career or putting very strong boundaries on how much/long you work will help. The Americans with Disabilities Act can help you work with your employer to give you the accommodations you need. Good luck.

  • Hi, I completely understand how you feel. I had a HA in March and found that it completely sucked all of the confidence I had out of me. I had a stent and have also had treatment for anxiety and depression for 22 years until now.

    The first thing I would say is that you got through your heart attack which many unfortunately do not. I also note that you like your job. I have had similar thoughts about calling it a day given what has happened but the alternative would not for me be so positive.

    I think it is important to find a job where people around you are likely to understand that anyone can become vulnerable following an experience like this. After a HA I would say that no one is the same. It is a frightening experience and having depression can become an added obstacle. I would say everyone in our situation experiences fear and a feeling of loss of some sort. This is human and it is easy to slip into old routines where you expect too much from yourself.

    It is never too late to find yourself a job where you can express who you are even after what has happened. It is not an easy road but one that is worth following because it is there.

    I have now returned on a phased basis and there are days when I do stop and think why am I putting myself through this. However I hope and expect that it will be good for my health overall. I wish you well and do not know your situation but hope that you find something worthwhile to do paid or unpaid.

  • Thank you so much -the therapy is helping x

  • hi there

    I think that if you think its time to call it a day then do so or go part time

  • Thank you everyone who has responded. It is comforting to have support and different experiences. Still going to the therapist and she thinks I ought to call it a day and enjoy my life in other areas.

  • Hi all

    Three months later I'm still feeling that I shouldn't return to work apart from the money side of things. Maybe winter will change my mind.

    Anyone done any retrained?

You may also like...