Bipolar Disorder and other Psych DX

  1. I have read in other posts that if you have Bipolar Disorder that you should not disclose that to your employer, supervisor or co-workers because it could put you up for scrutiny and attack from other nurses.

    So, how do you manage if you have this or Depression or anxiety or what ever and are too functional to be considered for a disablity?
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    About weirdRN

    Joined: Mar '05; Posts: 618; Likes: 42
    LTC Nurse
    Specialty: Long Term Care


  3. by   mondkmondk
    I have no choice but to tell my employers that I suffer a mental illness because I'm on disability and can only work like 6 days/month because of my SSDI. My long term goal is to get off of disability, but I cannot right now and believe you me, I've tried. So far no one has ever attacked me to my face about my disorder...some people seem to have a problem that I am working and also collect SSDI (mainly only at this site) but if for some reason I cannot work when scheduled and it is due to my disorder, I need them to know that. Fortunately, I haven't had to call in in over 2 years.

    Also, if you are on disability there is this organization out there called the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) that you could contact if you felt you were being discriminated against.

    Blessings, Michelle
  4. by   CHATSDALE
    this is something that you can decide on your own

    treating diseasee like this as if they are something to be ashamed of is sending the wrong messages and i wish that we could accept this dx like any other but there is no point in exposing yourself to ridicule

    good luck
  5. by   Farmer Jane
    Depends. Are you capable of holding down a job? Are you capable of consistently coming to work and performing in a competent manner? If so, it's none of the employer's business. If not, then it's not the job for you.
  6. by   Thornbird
    Unless you are asking for accommodations for a disability, you are not required to provide personal medical information to an employer. If one meets all the requirements of the job description, it's not the employer's business what other conditions one may have.
  7. by   Thornbird
    BTW the ADA is a law not an organization.
  8. by   mondkmondk
    Quote from Thornbird
    BTW the ADA is a law not an organization.

    Oh, sorry about that...still learning about any and all laws/organizations/whatever out there. I learned of the ADA from this site though...although when I filed a complaint with them, they sent me to the EEOC and they are investigating (I feel my last job discriminated against me...big long story). Anyway, thanks for correcting me.

    Blessings, Michelle
  9. by   Thornbird
    For further info on rights for people with psychiatric disabilities try They do huge amounts of advocacy for this. They have local support groups as well. They have courses in education and advocacy for people with mental illness. Courses are offered for consumers, family members and even teaching public safety personnel how to deal with a psychiatric crisis.
    Google websites for disability advocacy and disability rights. There are local groups and organization as well. There are courses you can take for advocacy and self-advocacy. There is a nationally recognized course called "Partners in Policy-making" that is offered in most states which is very good for all types of disabilities. When attending these groups and classes, you can network with people who may be in a position to further help and direct you.
    The EEOC may be helpful, but often is not. That's why they have all those "disability" lawyers advertising on TV. In most cases, you don't need to pay a lawyer, you just need the information and case-law references to do it yourself. I have a teenage daughter with a disability and can scare the crap out of those who need it all by myself!
    Best of Luck to you in your endeavors.
  10. by   NurseExec
    I am a Director of Nursing who happens to have Bipolar Disease Type I. My fellow department heads, as well as my Administrator are all aware of my disease, and are very supportive. I have chosen not to disclose to my employees at this time. I also disclosed to the BON when I moved here, with a letter from my psychARNP.

    I make sure that I take my meds, get enough sleep, and take care of my physical health as well as my mental. I love my job, and if I didn't I'd find another. Living with mental illness is hard enough--having a job that sucked the life out of you would make life pretty unbearable.

    Feel free to PM if you'd like. I've also done some posting in the nurses with disabilities forum, if you'd like to read more.