View Full Version : I'm in a difficult position and need advice...

07-03-16, 05:25 PM
Hi Guys,

I'm going to try and keep this as short as I can as I tend to write more than necessary.

I started a job in NYC with a big multinational corporation, I had previously worked with the corporation for several years in another country and had a very positive experience. For the first few months I struggled and was then diagnosed with ADD. I started taking medication and my life changed dramatically from a work and personal perspective.

I got on well with all of my bosses and they were happy with my performance except for one, who was one of those people who decided she didn't like me and started to make my life difficult. I was not the only one, she did this to many people, but as she was so senior nobody stood up to her. I eventually got put on a performance improvement plan because of her. My 5 other bosses gave me a good grading, but she pushed for it, and nobody stood in her way. She then picked on me very subtly and it led me to a point where I started drinking very heavily and started to suffer from extreme anxiety. In the end I had to go on medical leave, and I knew there was no way I could go back there. At the time, my best friend was given an opportunity in California so I decided to go with him and change jobs and get a fresh start.

At the time, I was still drinking heavily, and soon after I moved to California, and received two personal knocks 1) A close friend of mine died very suddenly, 2) I received some very bad news about my mothers health and found out she is suffering from dementia (early stages).

I immediately started seeing a psychotherapist to help me. However, I started my new job on a very bad foot and really screwed it up. I have not yet shown them that I am actually very capable of doing it. I was drinking a lot and not really focusing on work and really not making any kind of good effort or impression. I advised our HR department of my family situation and they seemed to be understanding and have let me try and work through things.

However, as soon as I started my new job, it turned out that one of my new bosses is one of my old bosses best friends and is very similar to her ,and almost immediately I felt uncomfortable and assumed that I was already for the chopping board. I do not know if she is aware of what happened with her friend in my previous firm. My new boss has since gone on sabbatical until late August, and very slowly I have started to make some personal progress.

I have been seeing my therapist regularly, and although I continued to drink regularly I started to cut back. Very recently I found out that my current ADD medication had worn off and was having little impact ( all the alcohol was not helping either). I was able to change my medication and slowly but surely things are getting back to normal. I have stopped drinking completely and do not plan to even consider have any until I feel my body has recovered. I am making sure I am taking proper care of myself and getting the vitamins that I lost.

The problem is that I feel that I have done too much damage in work, and it is probably easier for me to move on, or potentially I could get fired (although, I think that process can take some time).

I think it is probably better for me to move on, but what I wanted to know is that if I should disclose my medical condition to the firm? At least that way, I think I can be given a bit of flexibility. The way I feel now, I am very able to work and am in a much better place. I do think I should change jobs, just so I can have a fresh start but I would like to do this on my terms.

My career counsellor in our office was sympathetic about my mother, but she said, maybe you need a fresh start, and potentially I may be asked to leave but I made it very clear that I would not go down without a fight.

I have no idea how to approach this, or what my rights are in terms of employment law in California. I tried to reach out to our disability network for guidance, but noticed that all of the people I would be speaking with are people who work in HR so I decided against this

I'm starting to get to a place where I think I can move forward and don't want to mess it up. Any guidance would be appreciated so much.

07-03-16, 05:50 PM
i Wish had some specific advice but i work in europe
it's gteat that you're taking care of yourself!

07-03-16, 10:43 PM
Hey! I really want to respond to this in more depth, but im going to have to sit and do some research to get you some foundations to work with, and unfortunately at the moment im short on time. In short, i put the pro in procrastination.. and today im in the major leagues. I could easily spend all night on this, but man id be in trouble if i did. As it is, i have already gone too far..

I want to say though (firstly, im sorry about your friend and your mother), i completely understand the desire to start fresh, new faces, zero backstory ect., especially when dragging yourself our of a personal lowpoint. Been there, am there and will be again.

It sounds like you have already made you're decision on what you are "wanting" to do, and are just wanting to second guess your decision with some outside input. It might help to write a set of pro's and con's lists.. and (i dunno.. might sound cheesy) maybe have a hypothetical talk with yourself and guide yourself through this process, as if you were a guidance counselor or some super confident and infallible future you.. talking to the present you.

1 list for staying (Pro's on one side, and Con's on the other)
1 list for leaving (Pro's on one side, and Con's on the other)

When thats done, take a look at each list and try and figure out what you will need to do to make that the best decision to own. Things such as, if you stay.. bulk up on things like:
-Labour Laws in California.
-What does the Amaricans With Disabilities Act really keep you safe from.
-How do HR departments work when considering employees with disabilities.
-What rights do an Employ-ER have.
-What rights does and Employ-EE have.
-Employment dispute cases that you might tuck away in case you peruse a UI dispute
-What can you do (in how you present yourself in your job), to protect your right to Unemployment Insurance if you are terminated.

If you decide to leave.. research how that is going to affect your hire-ability (if at all). What kind of resources do you have available to you, and if you should consider what would be a better path for you (different career, furthering education, starting own business, ect). But dont focus on the negative possibilities.. life transitions are hard enough. You already know its not going to be a cakewalk. But think about the potential opportunities you might have.

The biggest challenge that I have, which causes a massive wall of anxiety.. is when i am faced with a major life decision and know nothing about any or either of the potential outcomes. But when i really freak out and research things..

A) i learn alot of stuff (ironically doesnt apply to my schoolwork..)
B) i tend to be more equipped than anybody else going into that situation
C) i feel confident in not only the decision, but the future that goes with it, and my own control.

Its far too easy to ignore our instincts and not make the decision thats actually right for us, especially from within a crisis. It sounds like you are on the outer end of that, and im glad to hear you're in therapy and watching your vitamins, and are cognizant of the alcohol intake, and its effects. Be good to yourself, sounds like you're in a place in life where you really need to put yourself first, and build your self-image up.

I'll hopefully get through my whiteboards and lists and get into a place where i can help with some digging, but i wanted to post this in case i miss that window.

All the best,


*One last inclusion: I would also research any thing useful in the Family Medical Leave Act that you could fall back on if you need to. Be aware, the size of the company and the number of actual "employees" that it has matters.. if its small, they dont have to recognize the FMLA.. but if its like.. larger than X number of employees, they do.

07-04-16, 12:59 AM
Thank you, your response is appreciated.

07-04-16, 02:41 AM
Do you want to stay or leave? Thats the first question to ask yourself. If you want to stay because you like your job, then you need to look into what protections you can line up for yourself before the woman you are talking about gets back.

The drinking:
Its good that you stopped. From personal experience..drinking over a work problem, or at least allowing a problem in general to influence you to the point of drinking is red flag territory. i am not saying you are an alcoholic ( i am) but I can tell you that what you mentioned is what I went through. If it were me, I wouldnt resume drinking at all because of the lack of control you had over it in the first place.
Drinking never makes you problems any better, so why risk it?

07-04-16, 02:58 PM
I don't actually mind the work and I have been in the same career for about 10 years. What I do is kinda niche so there are not a lot of places I can do it. I think if my head was in a clear place I would be OK. I feel a lot better now, but it looks like my new dose of medication is not having the full impact. I think that is my fault, as I drank so much my body lost a lot of vitamins. I am still getting shakes a week after stopping so I'm just focusing to taking care of myself and getting the right food, rest and exercise.

The good news is I have seen an improvement in the past two days, so I'm just going to keep working on it. I think my focus for the next week is to ensure I keep my job! Firing people can take some time and if I put up a fight I think I can potentially save myself. As least if my job is safe I can focus on finding something I really want.

I agree with you about my drinking, I used it as a massive crutch. I'm not really missing it and my doctor thinks I used it as a crutch and was probably as a result of my circumstances rather than the cause.

However, that is not an excuse and the way I was drinking was a problem. I would like to think I can go back to being a social drinker at some point. However, drinking is not something I'm going to focus on for the moment. Getting my life back on track is. If I drink again down the line and I can't control it, then I know that I have a problem I have to address.

I'll keep you guys updated on what happens over the next few days!

Happy 4th!

07-11-16, 01:32 PM
Well, I got fired! I can't say that I'm sad but obviously I need the money!

07-13-16, 09:46 PM
Well that solves that. Good luck on your job hunt and a fresh start!

Radio Hiker
07-19-16, 08:48 PM
Well, I got fired! I can't say that I'm sad but obviously I need the money!

I just wanted to say that, even though you got fired and you may be suffering some financial stress, you've done some good work on yourself and DON'T YOU DARE minimize the good that you have begun to do.:):) We ADHD'ers can so easily have our sense of self-worth destroyed by unpleasant circumstances and we too easily forget the good we do, whether for ourselves or others--I just want to remind you of the GOOD that you have done in analyzing yourself.