Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM) Support Group

Want to go back to work


#1

Brief question for the community. How does one quit a job? This sounds stupid, i know.

Issue Synopsys = Worked a job that had benefits. Asked Family to tell my boss i quit when i could not (that whole stuck in a hospital bed with ADEM thing). Was told they did. Recently went to Costco to pick up medication. Found out my benefits are still active. I am now told by said family they didn’t tell my boss i wanted to quit but now i should.

How do i do it? I haven’t heard from them since i had to send them my Docs letter saying i am sick till they say i’m not sick (back when nobody knew exactly what was wrong with me but thought it was aggressive MS). That was a year and a half ago. I am able to work. Just not that job. Now i feel like **** because i have been working my butt off to forget this happened. Now i have to think of what will happen if a future employer calls them for a reference.


#2

Are you able to do alternative work with same employer? My daughter ended up with permanent partial sight and registered too and her employer (local university) actually helped her return very gradually and set up extra large IT screen and special black on white keyboard and cut her hours down to 4 day week to help with the fatigue. She originally got help from the social services vision impaired team who guided her through the legalities of disabled employment and the uni was very open with it too.


#3

Hey Grim,
I really can depend on the employment law within your country. I’m in Australia and I know here the employer can offer you a lesser role or the same role with lesser hours. There can also be government programs that can assist your employer to keep you employed either via retraining for you or negotiation with the employer with a type of wage subsidy. Both Social Security and my insurer forced me to attempt both of these options, but when it was shown that this was unproductive, detrimental to my health and a risk to my clients safety(I worked with people with disabilities), it was then agreed that I could not work in my role. It took months for this to finally be determined. But now there is a documented record of it all and I can not work again as there are records of my condition, so no insurer will cover me. I’m deemed a risk both to myself and my employer.
I would recommend you obtain the services of an lawyer who knows employment law to shorten the whole process. I needed a lawyer to deal with my insurer as the insurers can be notoriously difficult. Once the insurer’s dr’s deemed I couldn’t work I used their report to backup my claim for Social Security.
Best of luck with it all.

Merl from the Moderator Support Team


#4

Sadly, in my case i would not be able to do what i did. I was something called a “Security Technician”. To simplify my role requirements, i was a construction worker, electrician, locksmith and Best Buy Geek Squad all in one. I know unless i was at 100% i can’t do the work. I’m still working at it but not enough to do that.


#5

I’m sorry for what happened to you and that it was such a trial. I do not consider myself disabled. Nor may i ever. My Doc is on the fence because of how hard i work to pretend nothing happened. Minus the issues caused by my medication and the 27 brain lesions, she says i am just a weaker version of who i was.

With what i just found out i just need help letting go and moving on. There are a bunch of local open jobs i can do. I just have to get my house in order prior to going on my next adventure.


#6

Hi Grim. Sounds like you are well on the mend and that is great. You know everyone’s situation is different so my advice will come in the form of what I wish that I had done differently.

Pre medical event I was a “high performed”. That means pushing myself to do well whatever I was doing no matter what including to my own detriment. In out patient recovery the team was so happy and impressed I felt that I was “better” so I agree. Then I went back to work too-early: it didn’t help me one bit, it hampered my recovery. When I cut back from 30h to 20h it caused all sort of hellish problems with insurance because they thought I was trying to scam them. Eventually it worked out by my advice for you is that I thought I could do more than I should, and I wish I hadn’t. Now in regards to you quitting: Don’t.

My employer still liked me and found a way to keep me around. For that I am grateful. Eventually they didn’t have a place for me so they released me from employment. The language is specific here: release from employment is not getting fired. When you get fired you can’t collect unemployment. So, in my case, my employer had an explanation about how I couldn’t fulfill my job responsibilities. Then when the state called them for explanation, they had one, and I got my disability. But it doesn’t stop there: my employer doesn’t have to explain anything. All they have to say is “He is no longer in our employment, and, on good terms”. They can’t reveal medical stuff.

That is some of my experience, some stuff I mad good choices and some stuff I mad less good choices. It is different for everybody. Hope you recovery keeps going along well you should good and positive so keep at it.

We are all in it together.


#7

Grim,
One thing I did, was get another opinion on what may be going on in my body. I worked, loved my job (still work and still love my job). I have been checked for Viral Issues. Like Epstein-Barr or Non-Rashing Shingles. The symptoms are very similar to M.S. It is nice when Dr.s think outside the box. I changed my diet to fight back the viral issues and I feel better than I did (moving forward) after being diagnosed with M.S. first, then A.D.E.M. No Neurologists I saw initially, could make up their minds or agree on anything. PM me if you need to. Yes, we are all different and things affect us differently.


#8

Maybe your employer moved you to short term disability then long term disability insurance? I assume you had those features of insurance since you worked construction.

YOU NEED TO FIND OUT.

If you were left on the insurance plan via a clerical error they can go back and end your benefits back when you stopped working. This means you will be back billed for EVERYTHING the insurance handled in the past 18 months.

Call your human resources department and ask. Be honest and be surprised you had benefits when picking up the meds (which you were). Don’t say you want to quit, say you want to develop a back-to-work plan with them, you may be surprised what they come up with and how they work with you.

azurelle


#9

I am very grateful for everyone’s insight and experience. And i am sorry for asking. You all have had a worse experience than I

#Occipital, i am a lot like you. i work hard, so hard i can not sit and be unemployed. I always say i’m going to work till i die. Funny enough. I was employed working full time as a prep chef till a few months ago. I got work ASAP after being allowed to do outpatient therapy (because i thought i was unemployed). Therapists said “there is nothing left we can do” 2 months as an outpatient. This isn’t a bad thing. Over working kept some of my sanity. Also my benefits doesn’t cover disability. only makes my meds cheaper. that’s it.

#Sonie, i’ve been tested for everything and his mother. Now i have Type 2 Diabetes because of “the devils Tic Tac”.


#10

The back pay is what i am worried about since there is no disability on the plan. I have seen them try to gain reimbursement for their “clerical” errors in the past.

Due to too many factors to explain i can not work for them. It isn’t feasible.

I know i sound pessimistic but this was a well thought out and informed decision that was supposed to be executed prior to the issue. Proactive instead of reactive. I guess i will work on my exit strategy this weekend.


#11

Grim, if you can’t do your ‘old’ job, perhaps writing to your employer and explaining that after fighting your illness for 12 (or however many) months, your progress has not allowed you to regain enough skills to be able to return to your position. You might include a Dr. note with that evaluation. Then reluctantly tender your resignation while also thanking them for their support and understanding.


#12

Thanks Tess, i am pretty much on that thought process.


#13

Ahhhggghhh, don’t be sorry for asking. It is what it is. None of us are in our positions healthwise by choice, but the fact is here we are. I was working with people with disabilities, people in a way worse situation than mine, I knew I had my limitations but there was no way I was just giving up. So I ignored symptoms, minimised their impact and pushed on through, that was until my body pushed back. I still did not consider myself ‘disabled’, my clients, now they were disabled, not me. It wasn’t so much a conscience decision on my behalf to cease work but more others around me saying “Stop, enough is enough”. I had to show the insurer that I hadn’t just given up, which wasn’t hard to prove as my employer could prove it with documentation. Even the insurer’s medical assessor had no problem in approving my application. In fact it was the insurer’s medical assessor’s report that got me approved for Social Security Disability.
Something I had a HUGE problem with was my own ‘acceptance’, I DID NOT want to accept THIS. HELL NO, and I fought against it and I fought HARD. But eventually, push as I may, the reality was right there in front of me. It was my body that was giving up and the more I pushed the worse my symptoms became, my body was pushing back. And I do still kick myself for doing that because if I’d listened to my body previously maybe pushing wouldn’t have made things as bad as they are today. But going over all of those ‘what if’s’ ie “…what if I hadn’t done ‘X’, what if I hadn’t done ‘Y’ would things be better today…” can simply drive me crazy (OK, so more crazy lol). Over time, and I’m talking years, I have come to a level of acceptance now, I say ‘a level’ because some days I still push my limits but this only reinforces my predicament as the following day I’m in agony. GGrrrrrrrr

I completely agree with the information that you’ve been provided with here from all of the other contributors. Don’t quit, Get a 2nd opinion, check your insurance and plan an exit strategy, these are all very sound pieces of advice. But to go along with that I’d say ‘DO NOT be pushing yourself further than you should. You’ll only pay for it in the long run’ Well, I did anyway.

Merl from the Moderator Support Team