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to ask you to help me write an email?

(9 Posts)
GirlWithABrokenSmile Wed 19-Oct-16 10:41:46

I need to tell work that I am suffering a bipolar relapse and need some understanding. They know I'm ill, but have presumed it's a relapse of a physical illness.

I can maintain my current duties, I think, but I need to ask to be excused (or at least not have to actively participate) in a stressful meeting tomorrow, and for some leeway on the time it takes to do things, and travel. We have a fairly flexible structure, thankfully, so this shouldn't be a problem, but when I mentioned my illness a few weeks ago, they pretended that they did not know.

I think I need to email HR because at the moment I have three bosses who have vastly different management styles, and we're going through redundancies. I'd rather this stayed as confidential as possible.

Could someone draft me something? I want to be polite but I can't string sentences together at the moment. I've been trying to write this for over a day.

hellsbellsmelons Wed 19-Oct-16 10:45:37

Can you get a letter from your GP?
Then explain to them that you have Bipolar and what it is.
What the relapse entails and what you need them to do to make things easier for you.
You could even cut and paste from the internet, explanations of what it is etc...
I think most people know, to some degree, what Bipolar is but every sufferer is different so you will need to outline what you need.

ImperialBlether Wed 19-Oct-16 10:53:02

Dear X

I have recently been diagnosed as suffering from bi-polar disorder and am currently on medication which is really helping.

I have been advised by my doctor to avoid very stressful situations wherever possible. Tomorrow I have to attend a meeting at X with X. I know I will find this stressful for X reasons. Would it be possible to either be excused from this meeting or to attend but not actively participate?

I don't have any other problems with my job and am very happy in my role. Sometimes, however, I might need a bit of leeway on the time it takes me to carry out a task and would appreciate it if my managers could negotiate deadlines with me as far in advance as possible, to help me meet them.

I am happy to meet with you to discuss this at any time.


EmeraldSittingRoom Wed 19-Oct-16 12:26:16

Have you declared your illness as a disability? (You can do this confidentially) If so, you would have the right to 'reasonable adjustment' under the DDA. The kinds of accommodations you suggest in your OP sound very reasonable.

But please (and I say this as a manager of a large team which includes a couple of people with chronic illnesses/conditions including BPD) try to engage with this process before you get more ill/relapsed, as your judgement might (I say this tentatively) become a bit skewed by a tendency to paranoia in this condition. It's a bitch of an illness, I can see that - so good luck & I hope you can get the right adjustments so you can keep working flowers

pipsqueak25 Wed 19-Oct-16 12:29:39

as a fellow bip i'd say there is some good advice here.

GirlWithABrokenSmile Wed 19-Oct-16 15:56:24

Thank you all flowers

I used Imperials wording, with some edits as it's not a new diagnosis. They replied to say they are sorry that I'm poorly but would like to go ahead with the meeting, and that I'm welcome to ask for additional support if I feel any is needed at specific points, but it would be up to my manager to decide on a case-by-case basis. Which feels totally unsupportive, if i'm honest.

I did tell HR when I joined, and sent a letter from my GP stating that it had been stable for a number of years but would require ongoing management. HR changed about a year ago and when I mentioned this a few weeks ago, they said they had no idea that I had bipolar.

I can't bring myself to ask for help over and over. It took forever to do it this time. I needed them to acknowledge that I'm doing my best, and agree that I could have those adjustments (which won't adversely affect anything).

I don't know what to do now. I am waiting for an urgent referral to a senior psychiatrist, but my scheduled appt is January, although we're trying to get a cancellation. I think my GP would just ask if I wanted to be signed off.

Do I need to pull myself together? I don't know if I can. I haven't been dressed in four days, I can't leave my house, I'm struggling to cook or look after myself. I can't sleep for more than a few hours. Work was a welcome distraction but I'm not up to my normal self...

GirlWithABrokenSmile Wed 19-Oct-16 16:17:06

I'm too numb to cry and I can't move.

EmeraldSittingRoom Wed 19-Oct-16 17:32:53

I think you need an emergency GP appointment to be signed off. Could you ask for a home visit from a Community MH Nurse as an interim measure?

Good luck OP. You sound in a bad place, but admirably self-aware and sensible about your situation

OneMillionScovilles Wed 19-Oct-16 17:41:04

Do you have a copy of your initial GP's letter? Also seconding Emerald's suggestion to declare as a disability if you meet the criteria.

Phone won't let me copy the relevant section, but DDA definition go to p29, section C5 - sounds like you should be covered

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