Nurse with bipolar disease wants to return to work

  1. 0
    Hello,

    I am a nurse with bipolar disease I have been a stay at home mom for several years, and would now like to return to work. What are the odds that someone will hire me? I would like part time evening job, and to work every other weekend. I have a real low self esteem because I have been out of the business for so long, but I know I could be a good nurse if only given a chance.

    Thanks for your input,

    Robyn
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  4. 10 Comments so far...

  5. 10
    There would be no need to disclose that you're bipolar when you have your interview. I think you might have more difficulty because of the work gap.
    jahra, xtxrn, DizzyLizzyNurse, and 7 others like this.
  6. 0
    Dear OCNRN63,

    I tend to agree. I applied for a job after 7 years of being out of the field and eye brows were raised. It is however, not that I have not worked. I have worked with autistic children and also had my mil here for over a year with Alzheimers. I want this really bad. I know I would be an asset to any facility that would give me a chance. I am willing to be a nurses aide for awhile just to get my feet wet if that what it takes. My biggest concern is if my mind can stay as sharp as it once was.
  7. 8
    My college offers a class for nurses returning to work after a long period of time. That might be something you would like to look into to boost your self esteem. Also, there is no need to tell them you are bipolar as long as you are stable and currently taking your meds.
    xtxrn, DizzyLizzyNurse, Gold_SJ, and 5 others like this.
  8. 1
    Many community colleges have a 3-6 month program for "returning nurses." I'd suggest that. Even two years absence is apt to cause a gap and if you tend to feel unsure it'll be double hard. If you had an Assoc. Degree, consider returning to achieve a BS. Don't underestimate your opportunity there, having med issues and economic issues sometimes is a free ticket to a BS degree. A one or preferably two year program will get you back online and feeling good about it. If your medical practitioner feels your condition is stable enough to work you can take one of two routes. The best route is (in my opinion) to admit the bi-polar condition after being hired. Many will say lie, but if you lie and suffer a set-back you may find yourself unprotected. If it were me I'd admit and bring a letter (at POST-hire medical) from my PCP saying "no restrictions due to the bi-polar." Most will honor that, and being open and truthful you may find you have a good ally to turn to if you need to.
    Mrs. SnowStormRN likes this.
  9. 0
    Is your license still current?? I know that on the Ohio app there is now a question about bipolar...I don't know how it affects getting licensed, but the question is on there.
  10. 3
    Quote from robynbsn
    Dear OCNRN63,

    I tend to agree. I applied for a job after 7 years of being out of the field and eye brows were raised. It is however, not that I have not worked. I have worked with autistic children and also had my mil here for over a year with Alzheimers. I want this really bad. I know I would be an asset to any facility that would give me a chance. I am willing to be a nurses aide for awhile just to get my feet wet if that what it takes. My biggest concern is if my mind can stay as sharp as it once was.
    i doubt you would be allowed to work as a CNA because you are a licensed nurse. Perhaps you should consider an RN refresher course. It would probably boost your morale to see that you *can* do this and would bring your skills up-to-date. As hard as it is to get an RN job these days, you need to make yourself as employable as possible.

    As far as the bipola aspect, I think if you know your capabilities and are compliant with your treatment you should be okay. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder almost 3 years ago, after about 37 years of near-constant depression. i have learned a lot about myself. For one thing, i *need* to take my meds everyday, as ordered. And I cannot work full-time. More than 20 hours and I start to fall apart. And I can no longer work in a hospital. I'm a school nurse now--much less stress all the way around. I still see my therapist about every 3-4 weeks, just to make sure I'm not going too far one way or the other. Sometimes it's hard for me to recognize when I'm getting a little off track. But I would never let it get so far that my thinking & decision-making skills were negatively affected

    There is no need to discuss your mental health with a potential employer. If at some later date you have a problem, it would be appropriate to discuss it then. There is unfortunately a LOT of stigma out there, even among nurses(who should know better!) No need to bring on falsely negative impressions.

    Best of luck to you.
    VivaLasViejas, jahra, and Gold_SJ like this.
  11. 2
    Hey Robyn

    As people have said before your medical history is no-one's business but yours and your management team. If you decide to divulge this info at a later date, be prepared for mixed reactions, no one thinks the same after all.

    I wish you only the best! You sound like a very caring capable person so I'm certain you'll find the right place for you. As others have said a refresher course is always great to boost your confidence and you can always request a little extra orientation or shadowing time in the beginning due to being out of the hospital system for such a long period of time (It'd be weirder if you didn't really).

    You take care ok and I wish you only the best in following your career wishes.

    Last edit by Gold_SJ on Nov 24, '12
    jahra and xtxrn like this.
  12. 3
    Quote from robynbsn
    Hello,

    I am a nurse with bipolar disease I have been a stay at home mom for several years, and would now like to return to work. What are the odds that someone will hire me? I would like part time evening job, and to work every other weekend. I have a real low self esteem because I have been out of the business for so long, but I know I could be a good nurse if only given a chance.

    Thanks for your input,

    Robyn
    Just a note about your being a mom- you have already been doing the hardest job of all for several years. No days off, no quitting, and THAT is a huge asset. Many people take time off to raise kids and return to work later (a friend of mine went back after swearing off of nursing, and became a school nurse- over 20 years after she left the floor). About the bipolar- you can always tell someone something.... you can't take it back...maybe your therapist would be helpful in making that decision A refresher course might be good- both for the information, and the scheduled need to be somewhere besides your 'regular' routine. Best of luck
    mustlovepoodles, jahra, and Gold_SJ like this.
  13. 2
    I too have bipolar disorder. I'm a mom for 2.5 years and a neonatal ICU nurse for 7 years.

    I really see no need to inform anyone of my BP II at my work. A couple of close friends know at work but I don't really want it public knowledge. Your decision on that one. I like what the last poster said about not being able to take something back.

    The only real issue I see here is making sure you have a current license and maybe a refresher course. Welcome back to nursing, we missed you!
    Gold_SJ and jahra like this.


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