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Unsure of what to do now

independent_independent_ Resident Coffee AddictScotlandPosts: 3,906 Community Veteran
Hey everyone, I’m just looking for a little advice here.

This year I studied an HNC in social sciences at a further education college. I hated school with a passion so left as soon as I could after turning 16. I really enjoyed the course at the beginning, but at the start of this year my mental health started to decline again and im now at a point where I’m really struggling quite a bit.

As a result of this I haven’t done as well as I wanted at college. Perhaps naively I thought I’d be able to somehow get through and get the result I wanted, and progress to the HND level which was my original plan despite what im going through. But I don’t think I’ve met the entry requirements for that year, and because I stupidly assumed it’d all be ok, I have no other plans.

I don’t want to be one of those people who sits at home relying on the benefits system, but I feel like this is my only option at this point. I had one plan and I’ve screwed it up and now I have nowhere else to go. My situation makes it quite difficult for me to get a job, but that is an incredibly long story which would take hours to write and even longer to read so I won’t go into it. I also feel like I’ve disappointed everyone by not doing as well - everyone sees me as a high achiever like i was at school and I’m scared to tell people because I know how disappointed and mad they’ll be.

I don’t really know what im asking here I guess I don’t know what my options are now and how to stop thinking I’ve disappointed everyone - and it’s a rant too.

Thanks for reading this as I know it’s long.
“Sometimes the people around you won’t understand your journey. They don’t need to, it’s not for them.”


  • JordanJordan Posts: 207 Super Moderator
    Just a couple questions to help clarify your situation if that is okay. Is your further education college aware of your mental health decline? If not, it might be worth speaking to your academic advisor/student support to see if there is anything can be done. Your decline in mental health could be regarded as a special circumstance, so it is possible they might change the grade you recieve or give you an option to resit it if it was exam based.

     Is the college where you are applying for your HND aware of your mental health decline? Like above, being aware of this they might reduce your entry requirements. It might be worth getting in touch with their admissions department to discuss lowering entry requirements.

    It sounds like you feel you have let down everyone by not doing as well. I know it can be difficult, but it is okay to have slip-ups like this. Sometimes things come along that get us down and affect our abillity to do well at work or academically. It's totally normal and you aren't alone in feeling this way.
  • independent_independent_ Resident Coffee Addict ScotlandPosts: 3,906 Community Veteran
    Thanks for the reply @Jordan yeah the college are aware but they weren’t overly helpful, and it’s the same college I’m applying to next year.

    To be honest with you I’m not sure if I can do the next year regardless of what they do re entry requirements etc just think at this point it’s gonna be too much but I don’t want to let people down.
    “Sometimes the people around you won’t understand your journey. They don’t need to, it’s not for them.”
  • JordanJordan Posts: 207 Super Moderator
    I'm sorry to hear that your college wasn't helpful @independent_. That must be really frustrating that they aren't willing to help you out. If you wanted to, is there anyone else you could speak to who might be able to advocate on your behalf? For example your subject adviser or a professor you know well?

    I understand that you feel like you want to take a break from college, although you are worried you will be letting down people if you do take a break. This must be a tough decision for you to make. Who do you feel you are letting down? In a hypothetical situation, do you think they'd be disappointed in you if you explained you were taking a break for your mental health/you weren't enjoying it?

    I did some googling and came across a quote from MIND about taking a break from uni/college: "If you find yourself in a situation where you have to choose between university and your mental health treatment, my advice would be to choose mental health treatment. It's more important. You can always pick up where you left off with studying, but you can't really do that with your health because the longer you leave it, the harder it becomes to treat."

    Also, here's someones experiences when taking time out of University. I know they are talking about Uni but I think it is equally applicable to college!

  • independent_independent_ Resident Coffee Addict ScotlandPosts: 3,906 Community Veteran
    Thank you for the @Jordan, yeah it was really hard them not helping out.

    I’ve decided to take a break. I have to. The original motivation behind this post was that mum found out I was considering it and she was a lot more supportive than I originally thought she’d be. I literally worry that I’m letting everyone down - parents, lecturers, other family, people who knew me at school and knew me as a high achiever, etc. The break won’t fix my problems but I guess it’s something.

    Those quotes and experiences are good to hear guess it means I’m not alone. 
    “Sometimes the people around you won’t understand your journey. They don’t need to, it’s not for them.”
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