I need a new career, but what could it be?

Hi,
I am thinking of looking for a job but have no idea where to start. I haven't been working for the last 4 years because of my health. I have very bad RA that isn't really responding to any treatment. I am steadily getting worse and worse. But because of financial reasons I started thinking whether there is any job, anything I would be able to do. My last job was a teacher's assistant in a special school, and the one before that - nursery nurse. I am not able to do those jobs any more as they are too physical. I also will not be able to work full time because I simply won't manage. I have a degree in teaching which I got abroad (5 years of university) and I can't use it! With English not being my first language I'm afraid there will not be a job for me. I am scared even to start looking... What should I do?

Comments

  • pinkbritishstars
    pinkbritishstars Member Posts: 731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    What about doing a part time office job?

    xx
  • elnafinn
    elnafinn Member Posts: 8,043
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Out of interest what is your first language?

    Would you be able to give English tuition lessons? That way you can do as little or as much work as you wish. Not sure how you vet your students in the first place though. :| Noticeboards may be a good start for placing adverts or in a university/school perhaps........ Just a thought.

    Elna x
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hello pinkbritishstars and Elna,
    Thank you for your interest and suggestions. I was thinking about an office job but I think getting one might be very difficult, especially in this recession, which leaves many people (healthy and experienced) without jobs, and more importantly because I don't have any experience. Elna, I am not sure whether teaching English is for me as I am quite sure that students would prefer someone who spoke English their whole life instead of me.
    Maybe some of you know of any places that help people like us train and get a suitable job. I have severe RA and I know it will be difficult for me to find anything that I might do, as I often feel unwell and have lots of appointments with doctors. I think that maybe I will never work again. But as I am only 33 I still hope that maybe there is something I could do. Maybe it's naive, but maybe some of you thought the same and then they managed to find a suitable job. If that happened to any of you, please let me know. I would really appreciate it.
    I thought of doing charity work but I can't afford it as my husband is on quite a low salary and we need money.
    Sorry to ramble on like that. It's just that I am upset that I can't help to improve our financial situation because I'm ill. I am fed up being like that and I suppose I still haven't accepted the fact that I am so sick even though it's been 8 years.
  • emsjane
    emsjane Member Posts: 351
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi Nesia,

    I am in the same boat as you!! I gave up work last May as a teaching assistant as it was getting too difficult for me. I dont have RA, but i have OA in multiple joints with lots of inflammation! So im in pain all the time and am restricted in what i can do!!

    I was thinking of a part time job in maybe a doctors or a dentists, as a receptionist. Or a part time job in a shop. I keep looking but as you say there isn't much out there. And then i wonder, who wants to employ a person with Arthritis when they can have someone who completely healthy!!!! Frustrating!!!
    LOVE EMMA X
  • flossy47
    flossy47 Member Posts: 171
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    I've been looking for a new job for over a year now. I can still work (my last job stopped because of emotional problems which have since been resolved) but I think that most places are looking for younger people that they can mould to their ways not a 47 year old who is set in her ways.
    With reference to emsjane's post reception jobs can be hard work and if you have problems with your hands or wrists may not be a good idea. I'm talking from experience having been a hotel receptionist for 7 years. Also may involve standing for long periods of time.
    I found out a few weeks ago that you do not have to tell prospective employers about your health until they offer you a job. Personally I think this is being dishonest but that's just me.
    Flossy
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi emsjane,
    It's good to know that I'm not the only one with this problem but at the same time it's not so good that we are in this difficult situation. I, like flossy47, think that being a receptionist would be more difficult than it seems. For example, I cannot use the computer for long because my hands start hurting, or sit in the same position because of pain. Anyway, they always want experienced people. I think finding a job as a sales assistant might be a bit easier but it would be impossible for me to stand around all day. I'm starting to think that I'm good for nothing. :cry:
    I wouldn't call not telling your prospective employer that you are sick dishonest, unless they asked and you didn't tell them. But on the other hand it will probably do nothing good for us. My last shot at working was applying for a position in a special school, as I'm a qualified special needs teacher. I told them that I was sick when I started working and I lasted two days... The work was just too hard for me and I couldn't manage physically. Maybe if I told them straight away they would have supported me or maybe they would have never given me the job. Who knows. That's how my dreams of working in a school ended.
    Flossy47, it seems that the emloyers look for people who are young and have lots of experience. So if you older, they don't want you 'cause you're ''set in your ways'' - like you said. When you young - they want you to be experienced. Madness :?
  • emsjane
    emsjane Member Posts: 351
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi again Nesia,

    I know what you mean about working in a school! It is a lot more physically demanding than people realise! When i first trained to work with children i wanted to work in a nursery because i enjoy working with pre schoolers the most and then when my arthritis started getting worse, i accepted that i couldn't do that, but tried to manage in a primary school, i last 5 years and in the end was in year 2, but during the last year there i had to accept that it was becoming too difficult and i was only working 2 hours every morning!!! It all had a knock on effect too as i was coming out of work in pain and tired and then had to do all the usual things like shopping and housework in the afternoons and i have a dog that needs walking in the afternoons too and i was just getting so tired and my joints were so painful because i wasn't having time to rest. Now im not working at least i can pace myself. But our finances are such that we need for me to work and also, i do miss seeing people everyday and get lonely sometimes!
    Im glad ive found this forum!!!! ;o)
    LOVE EMMA X
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi emsjane,
    I know working with kids is very hard and it is very upsetting for me not to be able to do it any more. I studied for 5 years to be a teacher and I'm not able use any of it because of RA. I worked for 3 years as a nursery nurse, mostly with 1-2 year olds but that got harder and harder. Every time I saw my rheumy, she would tell me to change jobs. When I did, I figured out I will try doing what I was really trained to do - work with disabled children. I don't know what I was thinking... I lasted 2 days. Most of those kids were stronger than me and I couldn't manage them if they got aggressive or upset.
    Now I'm not working but still find it difficult to manage all my daily chores. It would be good to have a job because of money and also because I wouldn't be so isolated. But maybe it's to much to ask.
    It looks to me, emsjane, that we are in the same boat :)
  • elnafinn
    elnafinn Member Posts: 8,043
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi again,

    It would appear that you would be best off becoming self employed so you can pick your times and even days, weeks, that you work. That is why I thought of you perhaps teaching English. I have no idea what your first language is, but would people be interested in learning that? You could perhaps do translation work but without knowing what language is your mother tongue it is difficult to chat about it. :) Quite honestly someone who has learned English as a second or even third language often knows far more about the grammar and so on, than me, for example, who has been born and bred here. :D

    Having to commit to set hours each work would more than likely not work for you for too long because of your health issues and appointments.

    Are you good at making anything that you could sell to shops? My SIL has her homemade cards in a certain charity shop in various towns local to her. She does not make much of a profit - she enjoys doing it, more as a hobby in her spare time.

    I hope you find something.

    Elna x
    The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything.

    If you can lay down at night knowing in your heart that you made someone's day just a little bit better, you know you had a good day.
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thank you for your advice Elna,
    Sorry, I forgot to say that my first language is Polish. I really doubt that anyone would want to learn it. I even have trouble getting my husband to learn some! :) It sounds like a good idea being self employed. Like you say, it would be difficult for me to commit to set hours in a job. But I don't think I would have enough confidence to teach English. Even though I have been in this country for 10 years now, I doubt my English will ever be good enough. I was thinking about translating work, but I don't really know where to start. I will need to look into it. I quite like baking cakes and bread but I don't think I would manage long baking sessions :).
    Anyway, thank you for your interest and tips. I very much appreciate it.