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As some may know, I started a new job about a little over a month ago... yippee. I jumped at the first offer - cashier in a gas station. After three weeks, I got "promoted" to night manager and started working 60 hours a week. That's ten hours a day, six days a week. Normally, I work from 2pm to 12am, except Fri - Sat, then it's 3pm to 1am. It's been three weeks of that, and I am freaking tired! At first, I though, "Okay I can handle this" and figured I would simply switch my sleep cycle from nights to days.

Yeah, didn't work out that way. Even though I'm getting a good seven hours of sleep, I'm still tired! All I want to do is sleep. Sometimes I sleep twelve hours straight. If I'm not working, I'm sleeping. I struggle to stay awake most days, and now I'm making stupid mistakes at work. I can't get anything done during the day and all of this is freaking me out...

My mind is fried, and I can't think straight. My moods are all over the charts. I'm seriously considering hopping in my car and heading for California - not that it would make it that far. I know that switching sleep cycles can mess with my moods - but this is ridiculous! Has anyone else experienced something similar? Can anyone tell me how long it might take to stable out? Because I can feel a big depression coming on, and I just got over one.

I wish I could go back to being a cashier... at least I had time off, and sleep! Wait, I'm getting sleep. I don't understand why I'm so tired. Someone explain it to me. I should have time... where has all my time gone? If I go to sleep at 2am, I should be able to get up at 9am and have a good five hours to do things... but it's not working like that. All I'm doing is working and sleeping. I barely even have time to eat anymore.

I can't quit this job because it took me so long to find it, but if I don't get some sleep (wait, I'm getting sleep). I mean if I don't find a way to get over this tiredness, they may very well fire me for making mistakes, or for going manic and smashing all the beer in the cooler in a fit of rage (almost did that yesterday - instead, I sat on the floor and dismantled boxes). I need to find a way to stable out. But right now, I'm too tired to think of one.

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whoa that's a lot of change all at once. a huge ramp up of responsibility. sounds like something that would happen to me. i would freak out because i felt i was in over my head so to speak.

i also know the feeling of being perpetually tired and it wasn't because i was working weird hours. what and how do you manage sleep during the day/morning? are you blocking out all the light you can? do you take anything for sleep? do you take any meds at all (i didn't look at your sig to see if any meds. sorry.) and if so, have you talked with your doctor about changing when you take them beacuse your schedule isn't normal?

i would say give it a bit more time to see if you can stable out, but it may just be that you can't handle that kind of schedule.

hope you work it out soon. and whatever you do, try to not totally run off or otherwise fuck up the job. even if you have to take leave and find another job because of the hours, you can be honest and tell your boss that you can't handle the hours and they can give you a good reference, because it sounds like you are doing good things if they decided to promote you to manager.

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Patheral,

I wish it was a simple formula. 7 hours sleep 5 days a week + 8.6 hours two days a week + 51.5 hours of work = stable. Shift sleep schedule 6.5 hours ok, 6.7 hours not. Add work or subtract sleep = unstable. It just isn't like that.

60 hours a week IS a lot of work. 50% more than normal. It is going to tire anyone out, but despite the occasional hypo/manic bursts of accomplishment, we bipolars are NOT superhuman. We have brittle breaking points that don't allow for bending.

Try to avoid blowing up at work. If you don't settle down in a few days, then tell the boss you need to move back to cashier for medical reasons.

good luck.

a.m.

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i totally hear you. i work 40 hrs a week and commute 2 hours a day (an hour there and an hour home), so i'm working really 50 hrs a week if you count the drive. i'm a tech consultant and i'm tired. i'm not used to work anymore because i've been on SSDI for about 7 months. i'd still live just on my SSDI, except the gov started garnishing my checks for student loans that i was behind on (but paying). those rat bastards!

anyway, back to your issue. talk about it with your pdoc. maybe you could use some new meds to help get your body used to the new sleep pattern. i know a lot of medical interns and other people getting used to new sleep patterns are prescribed provigil.

do you want to work so much? or is it the money? or just that you're assigned those hours? if it is just that there is pressure to work those hours (and i know there is, i've worked a lot in retail and at a gas station once), then you may want to have your pdoc write a note (need not say FROM PDOC or something), just stating that for medical reasons your hours should be limited to 40. ask for accomodations in that way. i'd say that is your best chance of keeping your job and sanity at the same time.

asking for accomodations has backfired on me before, making me reluctant in my new job to ask for them. however, you gotta do what you gotta do. if you're making mistakes, that could get you canned. it is more likely taht mistakes would get you canned than asking for accomodations, so go ahead and do it. you are entitled to it under the ADA.

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Hi!

Yes, 60 hours a week and one day off sucks ass. while im proud of you for making it this far...it sounds like this schedule is too stressful.

i also think its reasonable for anyone working 60 hrs a week to just be plain exhausted.

I hope you are able to make some changes to your schedule. if its a money thing...I hope you can come to some resolutions and assistance in obtaining more rest.

besides work and sleep - one needs to eat. please remember to eat. and maybe a luxurious shower or bath?

i wish i was more helpful,

december

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Thanks for the replies everyone...

The sixty hours a week is mandatory for management positions, if I don't work that, then I'll be fired. I'm not sure if I can go back to being a cashier, but it's something that I'll ask for if I can't cope with this work schedule. I figure I'll give it another week and see if I can stablize.

I had an appointment with my pdoc this past Tuesday, and I was going to discuss it with her, but she was a no-show, we rescheduled, but she canceled. I so wish I could afford to go somewhere else. My next appointment is the 24th (I believe). That's Thursday. Hopefully, I'll have a better grip by Thursday. Oh I'm on Topamax (150mg) and Seroquel (50mg). I take 100mg of Topamax when I wake up and 50mg when I go to sleep, along with the Seroquel.

I'm tired of being tired all of the time, and I'm *very* tired of sleeping all of the time. I keep setting my alarm to get up after eight hours of sleep, but then I go *right* back to sleep and next thing I know, I only have one hour to get ready for work, and nothing else gets accomplished! AND I'm still tired!!!! It's so frustrating. But, I'll give it another week... we'll see what happens then.

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Oh I'm on Topamax (150mg) and Seroquel (50mg). I take 100mg of Topamax when I wake up and 50mg when I go to sleep, along with the Seroquel.

You might want to ask your doctor about switching around your dosing to accommodate your new schedule. I know there is no way I could take 100 mg of Topamax in the morning and function AT ALL. I have to take all of mine at night because it completely puts me in a stupor.

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You think it might be the meds? But I've been on these meds for years, and they haven't done this to me before... Topamax has never made me tired *at all*. I recently added the 50mg of Topamax when I sleep because I had some lovely rapid cycle mood swings (before the job). I've been on the Seroquel for ages, and it barely puts me to sleep anymore - keeps me from going full blown manic though. :-)

I'd love to talk to my pdoc about this, but I can't seem to get an appointment with her. grrrrr.

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