View Full Version : Diagnosed with ADHD- Do I have to tell an employer ? Are there any advantages at all?

05-05-17, 09:57 AM
Would I have to tell a prospective employer about this ? I have started treatment which is working very well and think I can fit in and never have to tell anyone. ( if things remain the same and I keep to the plan and never abuse Ritalin or my body which I wont and have not done) .

Are there any advantages to having this diagnosis in job applications? God knows we all need some sort of help. I noticed a lot of companies or government councils set out to employ a small % of people with disabilities (diversity etc) and they frequently miss those targets. And ADHD is definitely a disability. The question is probably , would only public government jobs be guaranteed to treat you without discrimination in practice if you put this down on your job application ? I am qualified in engineering. I could have taken an easier path for sure. With treatment I can mix it up with the best. Beforehand my work was acceptable but there was a lot of hidden stress beneath the surface which was killing me. Finally I know why.

05-05-17, 01:58 PM
In general, you do not have to inform an employer about ADHD.

(That's not true for all jobs; for example, some military, police, driver, or pilot jobs might require disclosure of medical conditions and/or medications.)

I would strongly recommend against writing it on your job applications, unless you are applying specifically for a job in which there is preferential hiring of people with disabilities and you must disclose it to be eligible for that hiring program.

If you need accommodations to do your job successfully, there are informal and formal approaches to requesting them. If you can work out something informal, you wouldn't necessarily need to disclose any details -- you might be able to say, "I work best when..." and the employer might be happy to let you work in that way.

If you seek formal accommodations, that may require you to disclose the fact that you have a disability, and possibly the specifics of your diagnosis. I don't know the details of the law in Ireland, so can't comment on procedures there.

Overall, since you seem to be doing well with treatment and your work is solid, I would suggest that you keep your diagnosis to yourself. In general, ADHD is not terribly well-understood, and there are a lot of (mostly negative) misconceptions about it. Legal protections exist, but you can't necessarily count on people following the law. Even in cases of actual discrimination, making a compelling case can be very difficult.

Do good work!

Best wishes.

05-07-17, 05:59 AM
I am also an engineer with ADHD; and have been working for about 10 years (had the diagnosis in college.)

Yes, there are definately easier routes we could have taken!!!! LOL!!! (especially I also have dyscalculia... HAHAHA!!! But that said, engineering is a great field for ADHD, too. Depending on what you like to do, and what type of engineering it is, it can be a great match.

In my job I work a lot with people (project leader, and process planning), and I get to do some fun creative stuff with defining manufacturing processes. I get to walk to the manufacturing floor a lot. There are also lots of exciting meetings, especially when a project is having issues. At least, for me, I find the social aspects of project leadership really fun and exciting. It can be stressful too, which is good for ADHD as long as it isn't too much.

Plus, usually engineers have a LOT of control over thier own workload and schedule, and no one really notices too much if you aren't working that efficiently. Key is to not take on more than you can handle. Delegate things you aren't so good at (especially the routine stuff, or boring research projects, collecting data, etc can be handled by interns)

I would not disclose ADHD. There is no advantage... even though they are supposed to hire people with disabilities, ADHD is HIGHLY misunderstood and even if they do hire you, you might be treated in ways you don't like. And they can always find other ways of not hiring you, by just saying you aren't a good fit to the culture, or whatever.

To get accommadations, you can just tell your boss whatever particular difficulty you are having without mentioning ADHD. Like for example "Is it OK if I use noise-cancelling headphones? Since I find I'm getting distracted by the telephone conversations around me."

Some of the things I think are helpful are:
- using headphones
- getting one of those desks which can be raised up (so you can work while standing)
- Facing away from the hallway or high traffic areas (even if that means everyone else can see your desk) this has two advantages - you can't see the people walking behind you, and you are less likely to do things like surfing the internet since people can see)
- Scheduling even small meetings in some other place (meeting corner, or another room) so that you don#t get distracted during the meeting
- regularly checking in with your boss about your workload to make sure you are still prioritizing correctly, and aren't procrastinating some big project (I think once every 2-3 months would be good) You can frame it as "checking in" to make sure your priorities are still in line with your boss's, but for me this helps me to let go off all the smaller tasks which keep invading and making me loose sight of the actual things I'm supposed to be working on.

05-07-17, 09:34 AM
DO NOT DISCLOSE that you have adhd. It may seem like a good idea, in theory you are supposed to get accommodations but its so easy for them to pick a different reason to fire you, deny promotions or discriminate. ADHD is supposed to be covered under the ADA but im not sure.

05-08-17, 07:22 PM
I don't live in your country so can't say much. But I can say one thing. If you disclose you have a disability in order to get priority with government jobs, do you need to disclose which disability you have?

In my country, an ex federal hr worker told me to disclose that I have a disability so I would have an advantage getting jobs but don't tell them that the disability is adhd cause even though they aren't supposed to discriminate, it's possible they will. They aren't supposed to ask what the disability is where I live if I don't specifically name it (this was a while ago so not sure if it's still the case).

05-08-17, 07:38 PM
No and no.

05-09-17, 05:12 PM
Thanks for the feedback . I see no advantages to this . I dont even want to tell my close family. The good news is the meds are helping me use what I know at an unprecedented rate and relations with family and friends are improving so much now. My car broke down and despite never having worked as a mechanic I assembled the tools and replaced the clutch myself for example. Mountains of paperwork and letters |Ive intended to write for years have been sorted one by one. I was a hoarder only because I was so disorganized - they thought I had ocd. Now that I can think in a straight line, the hoarding situation has been sorted quicktime. In common with hoarders I was keeping something ''in case I needed it'' - however in my case there was always a chance I might actually need it . Now I can use it , assimilate it and throw or pack it away. Finally. The hoarding byproduct might deserve a thread in fact :D

05-16-17, 11:32 AM
Do not tell your employer.

Even when you randomly get drug tested and you pop for your medication the lab calls you and even they don't disclose that information with your employer.

I know because I do my companies drug testing lol. But no do not tell them, they will see that as a potential liability whether they would ever admit that or not.

06-06-17, 01:14 AM
Coming forward for accommodations at my company did not do me any good to say the least. After ten years with the company I was fired within a year of "coming out". They had good reasons but it certainly did not help in the end.

06-06-17, 04:50 PM
I would never tell an employer or prospective employer. They could possibly judge you harshly for your ADHD -- I am constantly amazed at how many people think ADHD is fake. I have filled out a lot of job applications since becoming unemployed a month ago. Every once in a while a job application will ask you if you have a disability. It will list several disabilities and ask you to check the one that applies. Up to now, I've not seen ADHD on those lists even though it will list depression and OCD. Even if I were directly asked if I have ADHD, I would probably deny it on a job application. For me, it's a personal thing and it's not something I openly share other than with close family.

06-07-17, 10:59 AM
You can't ask that in Canada as far as I know. Would fall under wrongful discrimination.

06-07-17, 04:58 PM
Heck no. Why would you tell an employer you have a learning disability? IT would only hurt you.

06-13-17, 02:44 AM
No because they probably won't hire you. Now after about a month I do say I have a memory problem or even earlier than that depending on job and when they really get on my slowness I tell them I have adhd. Actually I never told my manager I had it in a deli because I just knew he didn't understand. When they have a better relationship with you, they are more understanding and have had a chance to see your good qualities.

06-26-17, 08:24 PM
Hi :)

Hope this is relevant in Ireland.

Look for "Disability Confident" on employer websites.
Logo ( gov page. (

As long as you meet the job criteria you're supposedly guaranteed an interview
As long as their processes for applications, interviews and hiring decisions are separated properly, only the job applications people know you ticked the "I'm mental" box
First ask them confidentially about the scheme... If they can do confidential phonecall then they can prolly keep your condition that way too!

Councils and educationals have it, they are large enough and they're under scrutiny so they *should* be doing it right.

08-09-17, 08:15 PM
It depends on the employer. Some might be really cool, and help you accommodate your A.D.H.D. Others might be really uncool or not current on it. What kind of work do you do? How is A.D.H.D. perceived on the Emerald Isle? Do you work in Dublin?

08-09-17, 10:30 PM
If they require a drug test it would probably be in your best interest to let the testing facility know so it can be verified by your doctor when you show up positive for amphetamines. If no drug test is required then you're not required to tell them that you're being treated for ADHD.

09-09-17, 04:13 PM
What if it's a general medical exam before being hired? I am about to get a new job which will require me to take a medical exam to ensure I am in good health, etc. Will they ask me what medications I am taking, and do I have to disclose my ADHD when I meet with the doctor?

09-10-17, 06:38 PM
Well, I told my employers and it was clearly worth it. Of course we do a lot of work with children with adhd so it would have been odd if my employers had not made any concessions ;)

I do notice a tolerance towards my erratic punctuality, my sporadic mistakes when it comes to paperwork and my sensitivity to criticism. On the whole I am good at what I do and I have a unique insight into the problems faced by many of our customers. So it's a mutually beneficial arrangement.

I don't think I would recommend disclosing the condition unless you can be 100% certain that it won't come back to hurt you.

09-10-17, 06:59 PM
DO NOT DISCLOSE that you have adhd. It may seem like a good idea, in theory you are supposed to get accommodations but its so easy for them to pick a different reason to fire you, deny promotions or discriminate. ADHD is supposed to be covered under the ADA but im not sure.

:goodpost: I wouldnt do it, and i haven't told my employers i have ADHD and its been working out fairly good.

09-27-17, 03:10 PM
I don't have to tell people, it's obvious lol

Since I'm pretty stable now and won't really need to have a need to do in the future (but if I do, then I will) but I let work know about the bipolar. They thought I was lazy/didn't care/unreliable but they got to see me finally get proper help and the difference is night and day. I don't want accommodations, just some understanding.