Advice on Job

Discussion in 'Mental Health Disorders' started by Chaddiwicker, Dec 10, 2010.

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  1. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    If this is inappropriate for this thread, please tell me where I should move it and I will do so.

    I can't believe I'm even considering this.

    Been unemployed for 5 years. Had a break down, applied for disability, denied, still in appeals but hope for approval is slim.

    Have tons of bad "tapes" in my head about hating work, hating society. Still think about suicide almost every day.

    Even before my break down, I had difficulty keeping a job. Have no one to offer as references. Would probably not be a good idea if my former employers were contacted. I would usually get depressed and just stop going. Ashamed about my depression, I would usually lie in the process.

    Before today, the possibility of work seemed like something quite a way down the road yet.

    However, I came across a part-time job posting that matches something I've done in the past and, though I'm not sure I'm ready and I'm pretty sure I have almost zero chance of getting it in this job market, I think I'm going to apply for.

    I haven't had a resume in forever and I'm hoping someone has some advice on how to deal with my work history and my lack of employment for the last five years. And, how do I deal with the references thing?

    Do I have a chance in Hades? Should I even be trying? Will a rejection set me back? Can I handle employment?

    Part of the job deals with other mentally ill people. I want to disclose my own struggles with mental illness in my cover letter as an asset in being compassionate and relating to the mentally ill. Do you think this is a good idea?

    Any help you can provide would be appreciated. I'm hoping to get this done over the weekend.

    Still can't believe I'm doing this.

    Thanks, in advance, for any advice.
  2. sunshinesblack

    sunshinesblack Well-Known Member

    good luck
    am curious, if you dont mind what job is it?
  3. Well-Known Member

    Apply for sure. Worst case, they don't contact you at all. That's not so bad. I've applied to about 400 jobs this year and managed to get only 4 interviews. It's a brutal job market out there.

    I would not reveal any information about your mental illness. I don't see any good coming from that.

    Not sure how to explain the 5 year employment gap. I'm on 2 years here. I was in a motorcycle accident and was on disability when I was terminated, so I use that as an excuse.
  4. Joshuwa

    Joshuwa Well-Known Member

    I think you should definitely go for the job, i think helping other people in a similar situation to you would give you a lot of satisfaction and may be the key to getting you back into a positive frame of mind when it comes to working. It may also do a lot towards learning to help yourself.
  5. ashtar

    ashtar Well-Known Member

    Well done Chaddiwicker. You made a huge step forward! Ok, You have two options here you either get your disability case through or you start work. you do realise that by working they will drop your case. So think about this hard.
    To win a case like the one you have you need an occupational therapists statement. They are the ones who will decide if you are ready or not and since all occupational therapists are psychologists they will understand your issue. you can get one by calling your doctor or directly the nhs.
    As for your job, if you have been taking medication for depression or anxiety, just ask your doctor for a reference saying that you have been on medication to aid your recovery. it has to work if it doesnt you can take them to a tribunal in which you will win
  6. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    Nothing special to say about the job, but I'm curious what treatments you have tried. Long-lasting cyclical depression sounds like bipolar disorder, which is often marked by difficulty in holding jobs. You should see a psychiatrist as soon as possible to attempt to get proper treatment to allow yourself to hold a job, and make sure you specifically bring up the possibility of bipolar disorder. Before you go, keep a mood log (twice a day record your mood on a scale of 1 (suicidal) to 10 (happiest you've ever been, OR ready to break anyone's neck who looks at you funny)) and also try to remember any time you've felt extremely good or extremely irritable, and write those down to show to the shrink.
  7. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    I had one therapist who suggested I might be bipolar. She referred me to a psychiatrist to get evaluated. He did not think I am bipolar. In the past after a depressive episode, I would "work myself up" and try again. I'd tell myself I would do everything right this time and do okay for a while, but would inevitably go down again.

    I've never had the traditional "high energy" highs that people often talk about when bipolar is mentioned (cleaning, days without sleeping (though there was some of that when I was younger).

    I do have a brother who was diagnosed as bipolar, though I haven't talked to him in years so I don't know what's going on with him.

    I haven't feel "extremely good" in forever. I do get irritable, but rarely want to break someone's neck. ;)

    I'm probably just a loser.
  8. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    I COMPLETELY relate to your sig line. ;)

    My disability case has been going on for 3 years. I'm in the U.S. I was denied at the hearing level. My lawyer is appealing to the Appeal Council, but most everything I've read says that it is very unlikely they'll overturn the ruling and that I'll prevail. After that, I could file an appeal in Federal Court.

    It could be 15 months before I hear a decision from the Appeals Council. Then an additional amount of time (equally as lengthy) at the Federal Court.

    I understand that if I work, I will be immediately denied. I'm torn. Do I feel like I want to work? No. Do I feel like I can work? Debateable. However, my anxiety about being able to feed myself and keep a roof over my head is intense. I have a good friend supporting me, but I'm not sure how long his patience will last.

    Here in the U.S. the process is very long. Rumor has it that they make it that way so people will give up.

    Working would be a big leap for me at this point. Do I feel like I'm ready? Not really. But I've already lost 5 years of employment history. I'm virtually unemployable as it is. This is the only job I've seen posted in a while that I haven't thought "no way" to.

    I know the likelihood of me getting it is slim to none, but I want to take the chance. I can't get denied disability for trying to get a job, I don't think. If I get it, it'll be a challenge. I have a therapist and hopefully she'll help me through it. It's also only part-time. I don't think I could handle full time at all.
  9. Well-Known Member

    Unless you tell them there's no way they'll even know you applied for a job.
  10. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    Thank you.

    It's an overnight desk clerk position. Not a lot of stress. Less interaction with people than a daytime job. Done something similar in the past and I like the quietness of the night time.
  11. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    You need only one up episode among dozens of downs to be bipolar, and it can be many years ago (technically, you don't need to have had an up episode at all, since bipolar is a neurological condition, not a set of symptoms, but they obviously can't diagnose it if you haven't). If depression treatment is not effective it is very probable you have bipolar - ESPECIALLY if an immediate family member has it!

    Go for it again, new psychiatrist, push for it.
  12. sunshinesblack

    sunshinesblack Well-Known Member

    hopefully you already applied by now, but yah i think it will be good if you emphasize the qualities you offer, like understanding for those people and feeling batter about helping them rather than "i also get unstable at time".
    Dont think of yourself as a statistic, statistics also say thet if you keep one foot in frozen water and one in boiling water you are fine since they even out.
    Sounds like an opportunity worth striving for....
  13. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    The position was posted yesterday so I hope I have a few days to get things done. I've gotten a cover letter together. Plan on doing the resume tomorrow. Trying to take it slow so as not to overwhelm myself. Creating them from scratch since any resume I had from the past has long since been lost during my past bouts with homelessness and just picking up and leaving everything behind or getting rid of everything in preparation for killing myself.

    Thanks for the words of encouragement.
  14. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

  15. sunshinesblack

    sunshinesblack Well-Known Member

    yah, I understand the overwhelm thing all to well,
    Trained myself to take these as a bunch of chores(emotional ones too) life thrown at me, I spare myself the intense emotions, and I wont be to disappointed whatever the outcome,and i'll feel like i accomplished what i had to do, lol

    was thinking, dunno how it is there and how formal it is but maybe you could go there and ask about the job, or call for more info and if you manage to give some about yourself maybe theyll remember you and will rank higher mentally since they already had contact with you but yah that needs you make at least a neutral impression
  16. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    So, I got the cover letter done yesterday. Was planning to do the resume today. Woke up with anxiety (mutant butterflies in my stomach). Have had heart palpitations on and off throughout the day. Haven't started the resume.

    Doing so means having to look at the failures in my life. How many different jobs I've had. How I've failed to keep those jobs. How few choices I have left in my life.

    I'm having a hard time remembering the dates of some of my jobs and I'm struggling with how to organize things on paper. Do I go with a functional resume which focuses more on my past experiences and skills, but is sometimes seen as an effort to cover up an unstable work history (which it is) or do I go with the typical chronological resume which will show, without a doubt, that I've had an unstable work history? I'm tempted, even though I know it's wrong, to fudge (lie) about some of the dates. And, how do I deal with the issue of references if they ask for them. I am not in contact with any former co-workers or bosses and I quit most of my jobs (due to depression) so most of them wouldn't give me a good reference.

    Everything is feeling overwhelming and thinking about both the past and the future leaves me feeling hopeless.

    I've been writing on here a lot lately and hope that I'm not too much of a burden or seen as "attention seeking". I don't feel like I can talk to anyone in my real life. I just discovered this place recently and it does help a bit to be able to say it and not just keep it inside.
  17. chjones21

    chjones21 Well-Known Member

    This might not be the right advice but I would do it chronologically and fudge SOME of the dates - I think it is fine to have a large gap at the end, where you can explain you have been on disability but are better now and ready and looking forward to going back into work.
  18. jasonkramer

    jasonkramer Well-Known Member

    good luck getting the job. if you do get it you will be potentially more helpful than someone who has never had any problems.
  19. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    Thanks, everyone, for the words of encouragement.

    My mood improved this evening. Helped, in part, by a call from my mom.

    I have a draft done. Will probably do some tweaking to it tonight and hopefully have it proofread by my roommate so I can send it tomorrow. I can't erase the past, sadly, and the resume is not going to be ideal. But, I did it.
  20. Chaddiwicker

    Chaddiwicker Well-Known Member

    Cover letter and resume sent.
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