Third leave of absence

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Anonymous #1
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Hi,

I am due to start my third year of a four year psychology degree this year. I had one leave of absence after my first year due to close bereavement, and I then completed my second year afterwards full time. I am currently finishing another leave of absence due to severe mental illnesses and I have treatment scheduled to begin hopefully at Christmas (my mental health conditions are treatable but take time to recover from). I am currently living at home with family and my aim is to complete university online while having treatment and ongoing mental health support here. However, I need two loads of treatment for my mental health and due to waiting lists being long I am concerned that by the time I finish my degree in 2022, I will not have completed the therapies or recovered. It is likely I won’t have completed these therapies by then because they are long-term and have waiting lists. This is a concern because I want to move to the city to do support work or another people-oriented job full time after I graduate to hopefully then progress into a role in psychology, social work or similar. If I have not finished treatment when I graduate, I would have to continue living in my home town where there are less opportunities and I don’t know how I would explain a gap after I graduate. At present living alone is extremely difficult and not wise for me but my current living situation at home is better. If treatment is not finished when I graduate and I have to stay at home, It would be more difficult to find work experience where I live, and I may struggle in a role like this (I struggle to trust others.) I am of course not sure how I will feel in a couple of years, but my mental illnesses at least right now are debilitating. If I had time off for health reasons after I graduate in order to have the second intense therapy, I am unsure how I would acknowledge this gap on a CV. I am worried about having further time off after I graduate because when I graduate I would like to look fit for work. I care deeply about helping people in the future, and I have had leave of absences this far because I have been ill and know I cannot help others until I can cope with stress and feel better (My complex trauma makes interacting with others difficult.) I would at present not manage this but it is what I want to do one day. I am considering having another leave of absence or studying part time, in order to graduate a year later to ensure I feel better when I graduate so I can move out post-graduation to gain work experience. I am unsure whether it would look bad to take yet more time off, or whether time off after I graduate is ok. I don’t know if I am ruining my future by being ill. Ideally I would like to return to university in September this year because I have been studying to prepare, I have finance set up, and it would be good to have this to focus on. I have good mental health support right now so I could hopefully manage this. I really hope over the next two years till 2022 I can feel better so I can make progress career wise. Should I take a third of absence to be in a good place mentally when I graduate, or will this look bad? Also, how should I acknowledge leave of absences due to health on a CV? I don’t know what is best for my future prospects and my health.

Thank you.
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StriderHort
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C'mon, you're a 3rd year student, you KNOW what paragraphs are. Most won't read this.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by StriderHort)
C'mon, you're a 3rd year student, you KNOW what paragraphs are. Most won't read this.
You are great with advice.
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by Anonymous)
Hi,

I am due to start my third year of a four year psychology degree this year. I had one leave of absence after my first year due to close bereavement, and I then completed my second year afterwards full time. I am currently finishing another leave of absence due to severe mental illnesses and I have treatment scheduled to begin hopefully at Christmas (my mental health conditions are treatable but take time to recover from). I am currently living at home with family and my aim is to complete university online while having treatment and ongoing mental health support here. However, I need two loads of treatment for my mental health and due to waiting lists being long I am concerned that by the time I finish my degree in 2022, I will not have completed the therapies or recovered. It is likely I won’t have completed these therapies by then because they are long-term and have waiting lists. This is a concern because I want to move to the city to do support work or another people-oriented job full time after I graduate to hopefully then progress into a role in psychology, social work or similar. If I have not finished treatment when I graduate, I would have to continue living in my home town where there are less opportunities and I don’t know how I would explain a gap after I graduate. At present living alone is extremely difficult and not wise for me but my current living situation at home is better. If treatment is not finished when I graduate and I have to stay at home, It would be more difficult to find work experience where I live, and I may struggle in a role like this (I struggle to trust others.) I am of course not sure how I will feel in a couple of years, but my mental illnesses at least right now are debilitating. If I had time off for health reasons after I graduate in order to have the second intense therapy, I am unsure how I would acknowledge this gap on a CV. I am worried about having further time off after I graduate because when I graduate I would like to look fit for work. I care deeply about helping people in the future, and I have had leave of absences this far because I have been ill and know I cannot help others until I can cope with stress and feel better (My complex trauma makes interacting with others difficult.) I would at present not manage this but it is what I want to do one day. I am considering having another leave of absence or studying part time, in order to graduate a year later to ensure I feel better when I graduate so I can move out post-graduation to gain work experience. I am unsure whether it would look bad to take yet more time off, or whether time off after I graduate is ok. I don’t know if I am ruining my future by being ill. Ideally I would like to return to university in September this year because I have been studying to prepare, I have finance set up, and it would be good to have this to focus on. I have good mental health support right now so I could hopefully manage this. I really hope over the next two years till 2022 I can feel better so I can make progress career wise. Should I take a third of absence to be in a good place mentally when I graduate, or will this look bad? Also, how should I acknowledge leave of absences due to health on a CV? I don’t know what is best for my future prospects and my health.

Thank you.
Nowadays this is a relatively trivial issue. In your CV you just write something like

Unfortunately I had to take X months out after graduation for treatment to an on-going health issue, which is now resolved.

Employers can't and won't ask questions and they've got no indication of what the issue was, you may have been in a car crash, had a transplant, been sectioned, broken your leg skiing at Gstaad or caught some tropical worm while paddling up some far flung river.

There's no need to delay life for longer, unless you need more time to get well again.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by threeportdrift)
Nowadays this is a relatively trivial issue. In your CV you just write something like

Unfortunately I had to take X months out after graduation for treatment to an on-going health issue, which is now resolved.

Employers can't and won't ask questions and they've got no indication of what the issue was, you may have been in a car crash, had a transplant, been sectioned, broken your leg skiing at Gstaad or caught some tropical worm while paddling up some far flung river.

There's no need to delay life for longer, unless you need more time to get well again.
Thank you so much.
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black tea
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(Original post by threeportdrift)
Nowadays this is a relatively trivial issue. In your CV you just write something like

Unfortunately I had to take X months out after graduation for treatment to an on-going health issue, which is now resolved.

Employers can't and won't ask questions and they've got no indication of what the issue was, you may have been in a car crash, had a transplant, been sectioned, broken your leg skiing at Gstaad or caught some tropical worm while paddling up some far flung river.

There's no need to delay life for longer, unless you need more time to get well again.
This. You are also underestimating how difficult it can be to find a job after graduating and it would not be uncommon to spend several months or longer applying for jobs before you are employed.
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