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Old 07-10-2006, 12:03 PM   #1
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Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

I find it hard sometimes at work not to tell everyone.I work at an inbound call center When someone uses Bi Polar as a descriptive term for angry customers they deal with, or customers that says something odd.
Only some people know about my illness. My supervisor does because one day a co-worker of mine was describing a customer that was escalating to a supervisor and He said "He;s crazy , he's Bipolar or something". So without thinking I said to my Supervisor: You know what? I'm Bi Polar and I'm not crazy and i don't feel comfortable at work when employees are loudly misusing this term and basically poking fun at it. Supervisors should quickly recognize this as innapropriate and address it. I shouldn't have to throw myself to these closed minded wolves by having to give this personal information just to get my point across and defend people like us.
I was proud of myself but I thought I would pass out afterwards when i realized what i done. I'ts scary when people know. There's such a lack of knowledge and stigma attached.
Any advise, comments, similar experiences?

Old 07-10-2006, 02:24 PM   #2
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Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

Hi Rose. Nice to meet you. I felt bad when I read your post. How can people be so insensitive?

I see that you are in a different country, so maybe the rules of society are different there. My family is from Mexico, and there, nobody talks about any mental illness. I don't know if they deal with it, my fmaily didn't, they just hid it under the carpet, until it blew up.

Me? I am sort of nutty, I am that way in nature. I am very playfull, so my advice may not be suitable for you.

I am in the US Army, and I work at the Military Police Station. I have about 30 soldiers in my unit. Many of them know I was diagnosed lately. The guys on my shift surely know.
They play games, and poke fun at each other. So sometimes they poke at me, I just poke back and play too.

Let me explain. One of them asked how many paint chips I ate when I was a kid (lead-based paints in the 70s). I told him I did not eat any, I prefered crayons, the petroleum in them tastes better.

I talk about my happy pills, and we all laugh. They said I am not normal, I said, "I hope not, I wouldn't be any fun if I was". Normal is boring. I think normal is for people that cannot be creative.
Then we all laughed and agreed that if any of us was normal, we would not be here, we have to be crazy to sign up to go to war!
So, as you see, there's always some smart a** remark that will make everyone laugh.
Then again, if you poke fun at them one day, they may not like it, and stop teasing you.

But I like being nutty, and we all can use a laugh, especiall us, we work nights. Did you see Super Troopers? Yeah, sometimes we get that way when the night is dragging on.

If you need more remarks, tell me, I can come up with one for almost anything. My husband plays with me, and when I can't come up with something right away, he is surprised, of course he tells me so. He is silly sometimes too, he is so sweet.

Well good luck, tell me, what did they say? I bet you I can come up with something.

By the way, you should look at "funniest thing you'v ever done" It's around here somewhere.


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Old 07-10-2006, 02:31 PM   #3
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Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

I was just diagnosed in February of this year. Before that I was being treated for unipolar depression for 11 years.

At work, the only person who knows is my supervisor. I trust him very much or I wouldn't have told him. I wanted him to know in case my mental health ever took a sudden downturn, if I had a bad reaction to a med, etc. I also needed to request being moved to a quieter cubicle because I have a hard time tuning out noise and commotion around me (I'm a technical writer so I'm cubicle-bound and need time to think). A friend told me that it can be a good thing to tell your employer because of the American's with Disabilities act. I haven't felt comfortable or safe telling anyone else at work.

I'm in nursing school right now. My clinical instructor this winter/spring would make comments about some of the patients who also had mental illness issues (I was on an oncology floor). I definitely didn't like it but decided I would be best off to keep my mouth shut. Nursing school can be incredibily political .

Outside of work, I handle it the same way I handled disclosing unipolar depression. Do I trust the person? Do I feel comfortable with the person? Is there a good reason for them to know? I do share my diagnosis occasionally outside of work. Most of the time people look at me and respond "you?" I usually take that as an indication that I am managing my illness well. I'm more willing to disclose outside of work because I feel safer. I also want people to see that you never know who around you might be dealing with a mental illness - a little subtle stigma busting .

Old 07-10-2006, 02:38 PM   #4
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scullyboy HB User
Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

I have been offline for a wile so yours is the first posting i came accross when loggin on.

As for people at work knowing if i am bi polar or not then I might have a solution for you ...become self employed like me your employees have to be nice to you as you pay there wages!.
I allways let them know they are working for a madman , and i get away with asking them to do more work then normal only because i do ha haaar


Old 07-10-2006, 02:43 PM   #5
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Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

Scullyboy: what do you do for a living if I may ask? I have not been able to find a normal job, ever. I'm not sure I want a normal job.
Rose, I was afraid I was to forward. Sorry if I was.
Are these men or women that refer to Bipolar as crazy? If they are men, just tell them no, they are not Bipolar it's just PMS. They hate hearing it!

Old 07-10-2006, 03:38 PM   #6
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Smile Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

Hi ,
Thank you so much for responding. You definetly were not too forward. I appreciate your honesty and your positive attitude. Humour is very important in dealing with life in general. I admire you and the work you do.

scullyboy Good Idea being the boss would definetly alleviate alot of those worries. Thank you for replying. You're a smart guy

Runningbunny I definetly agree about who to tell. Sometimes telling a moron out of anger can backfire. I bite my tongue lots. I value your opinion. ThankYou for replying as well

Last edited by MillaRose; 07-10-2006 at 07:42 PM.

Old 07-12-2006, 10:13 AM   #7
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scullyboy HB User
Re: Do people you work with know you're Bipolar?

Hi Millarose glad to be of assistance...?
and Strawberry hill I work in construction as a self employed plasterer and have several trainees under me o.k scullyboy.

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