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This is an interesting topic. I too have suffered from depression for many years and have been up and down. I strongly believe that it is brought on by the job. I despise it and it is slowly getting worse and worse with the cuts. It seems that every department now is under resourced. I really struggle with it and the constant changes to policies etc. I'm on my knees with it now and feel that I can't cope. I have had several bouts of insomnia and have lost count of the times I have gone in on early turn exhausted as I've not slept through worrying. I keep struggling on as I feel trapped in the job as I don't know what else I can do to earn the same money and my wife doesn't earn much. I feel I am close to the point of having to be signed off with stress. Trouble is I have 11 years to go and I worry about the whole sickness thing and what would be achieved as at some point I would have to go back in.
Last year I had to take several weeks off work due to a neck injury. I woke up one morning and literally could hardly move my head without pain. It eventually settled to a level that I was comfortable enough to be able to go back to work. However it has flared up again twice in the last month and I have had to be off work again. I have no idea what could be causing this discomfort. I asked my doctor for a scan but he doesn't believe it will show anything so has just referred me for physio. The pain and discomfort now seems to be fairly constant although it can vary from day to day. The situation has made me start thinking about the medical retirement process and what would be involved if I had to go down that route and what the financial impact would be. What exactly would be involved? If I was medically retired, could I start drawing my pension straight away? I have served 14 yrs. I have heard somewhere that the job add 7 years on which would take it to 21. Would I need the help of the federation also? I subscribed for 10 yrs but I withdrew my fed subscription about 4 yrs ago. Should I re-subscribe in case I need them? Any help and advice would be appreciated. Thanks