Real stories: I was broken and you fixed me

I was broken when I came to you. My life felt futile, my existence pointless. I had been crying for days. I was always tired and never hungry. My body weight was down by 15lbs. I’d been suffering anxiety attacks, both day and night, for several weeks. Muscles in my arms and legs were twitching […]

Real Stories: Considering A Career Change

Having spent five years as a vet, it was difficult to know where to start when considering a career change.   There were valuable and satisfying aspects in being a vet – the client communication, problem solving and the potential to make a difference to pets and their owners, but there had been a niggle […]

Real Stories: Bullying contributed to my enduring mental health problems

I remember the toil and tenacity it took to get through college. The placements, the college work, but most of all, I remember the feeling when the post arrived (I’m so old we had to wait for the postman for results!) and discovered I was now a qualified (again so old that Registered hadn’t even […]

Real Stories: Alcohol became more important to me than anything and anybody

I was in my mid-fifties, principal of my own successful practice, with a large family.  I was financially comfortable and could do just about as I pleased.   So why did nothing seem to please me?  Why was I so dissatisfied and critical of everyone and everything?  Why did life seem so insecure, just waiting […]

Real Stories: I really believed I couldn’t function without my bulimia

A veterinary surgeon has generously agreed to share her personal experiences of bulimia and the steps she took to recover, in the hope that it will encourage others to seek help: I don’t wish to dwell too much on my own experiences of actually suffering from an eating disorder, because I want this article to […]

Real Stories: Life as a vet recovering from anorexia

A veterinary surgeon has generously agreed to share her personal experience of anorexia and the steps she took to recover, in the hope that it will encourage others to seek help:   If I could turn back time seven years and show myself the life that I am living now I would not have thought […]

Real Stories: It took years to ask for help

My husband who was a veterinary surgeon died of a brain tumour and six years later I contracted chronic active hepatitis and began to struggle financially.  During the first three years of my illness I received Incapacity Benefit but then it was decided that I no longer qualified for it.  While the Citizens Advice Bureau […]

Real Stories: My father died 12 days after my Mum

I wanted to share my experience of trying to work full-time in small animal practice while losing both my parents in quick succession.   When I look back, they were extreme circumstances – my father died twelve days after my Mum due to a serious brain injury resulting from a fall. I had no idea […]

Real stories: What I wish my workplace had done differently

Vetlife asked a veterinary surgeon who had suffered clinical depression and was signed off sick for a significant period of time what, from her perspective, her workplace could have done to make her recovery easier:   Acknowledge that I was struggling I was clearly struggling – visibly I was losing weight, I appeared exhausted due […]

Real Stories: How a vet’s family dealt with his breakdown

When we first approached Vetlife for help I was working part time one and a half days a week and doing some catering work from home as and when it came up. Michael was and had been the main breadwinner and when we knew he would be dropping down to ’statutory sick pay’ we found […]