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I'm really struggling at work and I don't know what to do. Nobody listens to me or wants to know and it's very much affecting my mental health, especially as I used to be so well depended on and valued.


I work in the public sector and it all started in 2015 when we were took over by new management, who don't care about my welfare. I'll bullet point some of my issues below:


  • I work remotely from the rest of the team and I'm sat in an office all day, every day by myself. Sometimes, one of my colleagues will come and work with me but this has been very seldom lately and the subsequent loneliness is horrible. This is worsened by the fact I have to do quite menial work that the rest of the centralised team don't have to do (they get more fun stuff and share an office).


  • My boss is non-existent. I've not had an appraisal since 2016 and I haven't seen him since around April/May this year despite him being on site a few times since then. I became really upset a few weeks ago as I found out he'd been on site to do another person's appraisal and he didn't even nip in to see me that day. Furthermore, the boss above him I'm told worked only in the office next door to me last week and he didn't acknowledge me either. I'm starting to think I'm some kind of monster but I can assure you I'm not. Before being taken over by the new management I'd been highly thought of and nominated for awards.


  • In 2016 it was decided by management that I needed someone to help me. They employed a lady who has learning disabilities and mental health problems and I was left to train and look after her with little support. She hadn't even had her Access to Work assessment done until around 14-months after starting post. This put a lot of strain on me and in January my union made me contact HR. My boss was then MADE to come and see me by them about all the stress I was under. He came to see us I'd say about twice after which but then he disappeared once more. My colleague sadly then went on long-term sick and has been off now since February. I've since done a learning disabilities course over the summer and know about the employment laws and support so I'm a bit more equipped for if/when she comes back. Still, I'm very angry about this whole situation which has 1) left me feeling helpless and 2) has resulted in my colleague being off sick.


  • My work gets 'stolen' by the centralised team. By this I mean that through the system they access my work and just do it for me and leave me with the aforementioned menial duties. I've tried addressing the people who do this by 1) asking them if they have a problem with me carrying out the work (which I was assured there wasn't) and 2) by asking them to leave it alone for me to do but I'm just met with the 'we all work as one' quote. I feel we aren't working as one though, I'm actively having work taken from me to benefit others and it's making me feel devalued. How does that constitute teamwork?


  • Lastly (I won't go on too much), I'll add that I've never had a sickness review. Everybody's meant to have one but I have a clear record since 2015, and I've been off sick about 3 days since then. Again, it makes me feel I don't matter and my absences aren't to be taken seriously.


I've done everything I can to try and combat the negative feelings that arise from my job like looking for another (which isn't easy where I live), going to therapy, trying antidepressants, doing a degree, attending college, learning another language and guitar etc, but I still can't escape my anxiousness and depressive moods. I'm wanting to up-skill and re-train and I'm doing really well in my degree but I can't help feeling I'll be useless at whatever I go on to do and it's crippling me; my confidence is at an all-time low.


If I say something to someone, I fear it'll fall on deaf ears & I don't want to go off sick because I'm frightened that it'll impact any future plans. What would you do if you were me? I feel I'm at a dead end. When we were taken over by the new management my personal staff file was dropped in the car park in the dark for all to see and for cars to drive over and I feel that serves as the perfect metaphor for the treatment I've ensued.

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Been there.



I would, however awful it made me feel, say a cheery hello whenever the bosses were in the office - and see it as my job, not theirs



Move myself into the main office whenever there was an empty desk (people on holiday)



Ask boss for a conversation about my career prospects, having prepped a list of training and development/ new assignments I would like to do



Move town if the employment situation was really that grim



Get a coach



Do a psychometric test to work out why I was not happy at work in a slightly more scientific way






View myself as a guitiarist who just did work to pay the bills, and commit and live accordingly



Stop being melodramatic about a dropped file....




These are all things you do; you can't change anyone else. Just you and see if people respond differently.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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Public Sector unfortunately needs desk fillers and you've ended up being one despite your effort.

Be pragmatic about it: you get paid and nobody bothers you.

Don't do any work and they don't even notice it.


You can now concentrate on better things in life that you enjoy.

If you really want to have a gratifying job then follow the advice above.

You go sick and they don't care???

I wish I could do this! I'd be off 11 months a year! (Got to take holidays at one point 😁)

A lot of people, including me, work for the money, not for the glory, then we have our little fulfilling life outside the office and the energy to live it as we haven't done much at work.

It's hard at the beginning, but once you start enjoying it, you won't be looking at a promotion anymore.

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I partially agree with Kingy, look at the job for what it is- are there realistically any promotion prospects without someone dropping dead? are there aspects to your job that are specialist in nature that means they need you in that position?

Appraisal? has the job changed in the last 2 years, if not then dont worry about the lack of appraisal, all they will do is set targets and probably blame you if these are unrealistic.


Progress with your interests outside work and use the combined new qualifications and experiance to search for a new job when the time comes. Talk yourself up and not down in your CV and at interview. if you havent done soemthing tell them that you have read something about it and then swot up on the subject.

In the meanwhile waht about the social life whwere you work? many local govt organisations have social and sporting activites that are given time off to attend so join all of the teams. Put yourself forward for any courses you read about on the intranet regardles of how relevant they are to your job. it will be another tick and a star on your CV and makes you look keen to progress even if there are no job vacancies in the course area. I did shed loads of H&S courses, courses on computer programming, sports coaching, archaeology etc as I could find some aspct that may be useful in my everyday work but 99% of it was just to keep me amused.

If you are a member of a union they also have courses you can apply for and anything H&S related will almost automatically be approved by your employer as they often lack the qualified people they need to make things tick along.


This is not just time filling, you can get some serious qualifications this way that can be useful where you are at present ad certainly for any future employment as the prospective employer is likey to see a cost advantage in the buy one get one free for the skill set.

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