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    So I've been given an offer to study for a PGCE (secondary) at a university next year, however, I've recently developed a stress related condition in my digestive system and it is pretty bad. I have quite a stressful job at the moment (it is a pretty menial one that I picked up to keep me going until I got to the pgce) and I just feel ill the entire time. I know that all jobs are going to be stressful, but it seems that the PGCE and teaching is especially so. I don't want to spend my entire life feeling ill and, as much as I love the idea of teaching, it doesn't seem worth doing it if I am going to feel ill the entire time. At the moment, the illness is certainly affecting my relationship with my partner, not in a devastating way, but just is bringing down our quality of life at the moment (as I feel ill a lot of the time).

    Does anyone here have experience of going into a PGCE with stress related illnesses? Is it worth spending a few years getting this under control and then considering reapplying? Is teaching actually as stressful as it is often attested to be?
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    I'm not sure whether my experience is exactly the same, but I had anxiety-related issues last year. It's a little different to stress, but related. I've dug up a post I made a year ago, before I started my PGCE:

    (Original post by Squoosh25)
    Doing a PGCE in September, and though I have no nerves or anxiety about it whatsoever, I know I can be prone to what is known as 'generalised anxiety disorder' because I suffered it quite severely last year during a bar job I had. Before I got that job, I had no worries about it whatsoever. When I started with it, for the first few months I was completely fine. Then somehow I began to develop an anxiety towards it that slowly snowballed - to the point where near the end of it I was feeling strong stomach pains consistently in the few hours before I would leave for work. Then, when I got to work, the anxiety would melt away. This happened every week, and seemed to get worse rather than better, despite me getting better and better at the job. So not quite the same anxiety issue that you have, but the point is that I am well aware that I could develop the same issue on the PGCE. At this stage I don't really know whether this anxiety is completely irrational, or whether it will be exacerbated from doing a stressful and important job.

    Here's the thing though: I really really want to be a teacher. I absolutely adore my subject (English), and I want some of my enthusiasm for it to be passed on to the next generation. Though I do not know how much I'll like all the less pleasant aspects of the job (behaviour control and paperwork), I know I love standing in front of a class and teaching as I've tried it a few times with Sixth Form classes. I am certain that if I didn't take this opportunity I would regret it for the rest of my life, and somehow the prospect of my anxiety coming back scares me far less than the soul-crushing thought of being stuck in an easier job that I have no enthusiasm towards.

    ---

    So, here's where I stand a year or so on from this post. I haven't had any major anxiety issues, though I still get a certain feeling of dread before most lessons (much milder than I had with my bar job). Essentially, it's been fine, but I am still very aware that next year it could be far, far worse. At the moment I feel like the only person I'm letting down if I don't do well is myself. Next year I am being paid to get a certain amount of children through their exams. The classes will be my classes, and the responsibility will be entirely on my shoulders. Plus the workload will be greater.

    Don't be under any illusions: it is as stressful as it's attested to be. The workload is intense: during term-time I'm lucky if I can give myself an hour or two away from work on a Saturday evening, let alone a whole day off. Be prepared to come home from work at 5pm, completely emotionally drained from teaching, and having to plan 2 lessons before you go to bed just so that you can get through the next day. You may find you're just too busy to be stressed, as paradoxical as that sounds: there's a point where you get too tired to worry, you only try to get through the day.

    It's rewarding though. It's creative. It's meaningful. If you want this: go for it. Don't miss out and then regret it for the rest of your life.
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    (Original post by Squoosh25)
    I'm not sure whether my experience is exactly the same, but I had anxiety-related issues last year. It's a little different to stress, but related. I've dug up a post I made a year ago, before I started my PGCE:




    ---

    So, here's where I stand a year or so on from this post. I haven't had any major anxiety issues, though I still get a certain feeling of dread before most lessons (much milder than I had with my bar job). Essentially, it's been fine, but I am still very aware that next year it could be far, far worse. At the moment I feel like the only person I'm letting down if I don't do well is myself. Next year I am being paid to get a certain amount of children through their exams. The classes will be my classes, and the responsibility will be entirely on my shoulders. Plus the workload will be greater.

    Don't be under any illusions: it is as stressful as it's attested to be. The workload is intense: during term-time I'm lucky if I can give myself an hour or two away from work on a Saturday evening, let alone a whole day off. Be prepared to come home from work at 5pm, completely emotionally drained from teaching, and having to plan 2 lessons before you go to bed just so that you can get through the next day. You may find you're just too busy to be stressed, as paradoxical as that sounds: there's a point where you get too tired to worry, you only try to get through the day.

    It's rewarding though. It's creative. It's meaningful. If you want this: go for it. Don't miss out and then regret it for the rest of your life.
    Hey, thanks for your feedback. It isn't a sort of "if I don't teach now, I never will thing", so I'm not worried about regretting it for the rest of my life- I'd just reapply another time. It is just whether to take some time to get my health issues under control or whether that is manageable along with a pgce. I am unsure whether saying "I'll be okay" is foolish or whether in people's experience it is best to just go for it...
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    (Original post by bownessie)
    Hey, thanks for your feedback. It isn't a sort of "if I don't teach now, I never will thing", so I'm not worried about regretting it for the rest of my life- I'd just reapply another time. It is just whether to take some time to get my health issues under control or whether that is manageable along with a pgce. I am unsure whether saying "I'll be okay" is foolish or whether in people's experience it is best to just go for it...
    I have an autoimmune condition which can 've exacerbated by stress. I didn't even let myself think I would be capable of teaching because of this, but 5 years or so post-diagnosis my condition was totally under control. I took the plunge and am now in my nqt year.

    I was worried before I started training that the stress would cause a flair, but it never did. I'm even reducing my medication now!
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    (Original post by TraineeLynsey)
    I have an autoimmune condition which can 've exacerbated by stress. I didn't even let myself think I would be capable of teaching because of this, but 5 years or so post-diagnosis my condition was totally under control. I took the plunge and am now in my nqt year.

    I was worried before I started training that the stress would cause a flair, but it never did. I'm even reducing my medication now!
    Ah brilliant Sounds like you are doing well So would you suggest just taking the plunge or do you think it is best just to get to a point where your health is better first?
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    I would personally try and get to a point where medication is keeping you broadly ok before taking the plunge. The course is the most stressful experience I've ever had, and I know that if I wasn't under control I could have easily relapsed from the stress. As it was, I did have a little flare up when my final assignment was due, because I was operating on about 3 hours of sleep (lack of sleep and stress are both triggers for me).

    But then I suppose it depends on how your condition impacts you when it is acting up. For me, I couldn't adequately do my job if was to become seriously symptomatic. But if you can get by and have it just be an inconvenience rather than a full on road block to you doing the job, then it might be worth going for it.
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    (Original post by TraineeLynsey)
    I would personally try and get to a point where medication is keeping you broadly ok before taking the plunge. The course is the most stressful experience I've ever had, and I know that if I wasn't under control I could have easily relapsed from the stress. As it was, I did have a little flare up when my final assignment was due, because I was operating on about 3 hours of sleep (lack of sleep and stress are both triggers for me).

    But then I suppose it depends on how your condition impacts you when it is acting up. For me, I couldn't adequately do my job if was to become seriously symptomatic. But if you can get by and have it just be an inconvenience rather than a full on road block to you doing the job, then it might be worth going for it.
    Alright, thanks I've got a doctor's appointment so am going to talk to my doctor about it, but was just wanting to get some feedback on here
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    (Original post by Squoosh25)
    Don't be under any illusions: it is as stressful as it's attested to be. The workload is intense: during term-time I'm lucky if I can give myself an hour or two away from work on a Saturday evening, let alone a whole day off. Be prepared to come home from work at 5pm, completely emotionally drained from teaching, and having to plan 2 lessons before you go to bed just so that you can get through the next day. You may find you're just too busy to be stressed, as paradoxical as that sounds: there's a point where you get too tired to worry, you only try to get through the day.

    It's rewarding though. It's creative. It's meaningful. If you want this: go for it. Don't miss out and then regret it for the rest of your life.
    On the other hand, I'm 5 weeks away from finishing and I rarely work in the evenings (one or two nights a week) and never work on a weekend apart from saturday afternoon.

    It is incredibly stressful and I work hard during the day, but, I haven't had any kind of issue with time management with the exception of the first few weeks of my course.

    OP, I get stress rashes and acid reflux whenever I get stressed or anxious but I've been relatively okay this year.
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    I've never had so much anxiety as I have I had in The past year. I loved teaching but what was expected of me is what I struggled with I would be in school at 6am and leave at 8pm. My first placement was amazing and I sailed through but second was totally different. I developed constatant stomach pains, didn't eat, insomnia and so on. I hope I'm not like this when teaching in Sep. I have been told that trains is the hardest in your teaching career so fingers crossed. Everyone is different so what is a breeze for one person could be a nightmare for another. Maybe speak to your doctor.
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    (Original post by Lucy_jucie)
    I've never had so much anxiety as I have I had in The past year. I loved teaching but what was expected of me is what I struggled with I would be in school at 6am and leave at 8pm. My first placement was amazing and I sailed through but second was totally different. I developed constatant stomach pains, didn't eat, insomnia and so on. I hope I'm not like this when teaching in Sep. I have been told that trains is the hardest in your teaching career so fingers crossed. Everyone is different so what is a breeze for one person could be a nightmare for another. Maybe speak to your doctor.

    Goodness me, what were you doing in school for that amount of time?! No wonder you felt stressed. I did experience some stress and anxiety during the year, and I have been treated for anxiety in the past, so I was particularly concerned about 'performing' in front of a class, but I managed to deal with it fairly ok. Just the normal amount of nerves, and maybe more than that before important observations - upset stomach etc, which I was expecting, as I have mild IBS. I did get quite run down during my second placement, and developed a horrible virus that dragged on for weeks. However, that wasn't really to do with workload, which was fairly manageable, due to being in Year 6 after SATs! More to do with how I didn't really feel like I settled in my placement school.
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    Had my OH assessment today and really it's nothing to worry about if you are in a stable condition. Good luck!
 
 
 

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