Thank you for the topic. It is something I suffered through, but not with writing. It was in my day job. I was working 10 to 12 hour days (and still not getting my work done), because of changes the district made to save money. I think they made the decision because I am usually obliging and rarely complain. I am sure if it had succeeded they would have done it to other teachers in the following years. I was required to do two different jobs on two different campuses. In the morning I taught in a special day class (my students were farmed out to other classrooms in the afternoon) and in the afternoon I was a resource specialist at a different site. I was given 15 minutes to travel to the next campus which I needed every minute of. When asked for 15 minutes to prep for the next day before heading to the other campus, I was refused. That meant after prepping for my RSP students I had to return to the other campus and prep for my SDC students. My case load was huge and I was it the process of doing the initial evaluations for several more students, most of whom would qualify.
I was a wreck by Christmas vacation, could not sleep, my stomach was in knots, I lost a lot of weight, I cracked a tooth and acquired a nervous tic, but it was not until the suicidal thoughts, that I got the help I needed. I thank my union for their advise. The doctor took me out of the classroom (so the district did not save money there). My psychologist recommended doing something creative so that is how I got into writing.
Burnout is a huge problem in the teaching profession. A lot of teachers do not make it past the five year mark. Doris Santoro the author of Demoralized: Why Teachers Leave the Profession They Love and How They Can Stay does not think it should be called burnout, because it lays the blame at the individuals feet. She thinks burnout should be called Demoralization. That puts the blame on what is causing the burnout, not the individual.
I just wanted to share my story maybe it can help someone get the help they need. Something good came out of my experience. I discovered how much I love to write and I can not thank RWA, the different chapters I belong to and all the wonderful writers who have given me encouragement and taught me how to make my writing better, enough.
Thank you, Anna