I was diagnosed back in Feb. 2004 and have been largely in denial ever since. I have what the docs here call exacerbating/remitting MS and they say it's amazing what I've been able to accomplish given the number of exacerbations the MRIs turned up. I started noticing symptoms in 1987, nothing more until 1993 and this last exacerbation (Dec. 2003) was the next time I noticed anything. The diagnosis explained my depression and fatigue, which docs and I had been battling for many years.
I don't mind the tingling and "MS hug" so much, but they're a frequent reminder that somethin' ain't right. I'm having acupuncture weekly and it seems to help. My primary care doc gave me a pill to help relieve anxiety and to promote sleep and it works OK.
My libido went away in Dec. 2003, which disrupted my love life tremendously (I'm female, BTW). I recently took what has turned out to be a very stressful government job and my boss is complaining about my memory problems.
Any words of wisdom on if and when to tell the boss about my MS? Any words of encouragement about the libido loss?
Last edited by dealingcms; 01-11-2005 at 06:22 PM.
I can't really answer any of your questions but I didn't want you to think we didn't care. Are you taking an antidepressant? If so, that may be affecting your libido. I told my work immediately when I found out because they were aware of the symptoms I was getting tested for. Sometimes, it is good for them to know and sometimes not. I guess only you can be the judge. Perhaps, someone you are close with that you work with can give a good opinion since they know all involved. I also work with the government and have MS, we have things in common unfortunately. LOL.
I'm not on antidepressants but I do take Lorazepam to reduce anxiety and promote sleep.
The head of the division (my boss's boss's boss), it turns out, is a longtime fan of my musical work and allows me to e-mail him evenings and weekends about job and other stuff. I wonder if I can tell him...
What are the negative results you've seen or imagined with telling one's superiors about the MS and its effects on performance?
Last edited by dealingcms; 01-16-2005 at 12:51 PM.
I guess sometimes people you work with may tend to blame everything on the MS and then think that because of that an individual with MS is not capable of doing the job. Illegally they may try to phase your position out or you out of the position. They may lose sight of the fact that we are all human and mistakes happen regardless of illness. It really can go either way. Hopefully they will be more understanding as long as the overall job is done with only errors every so often.
Don't tell, don't tell, don't tell. That man may not have a problem with it, but someone will somewhere. Don't tell. I only say that from experience. Unless it is life or job, then don't tell. Someone will find a weakness, and if it can be used to their advantage, they WILL use it. Been there, done that. Never will do it again. Best wishes.
it depends on your situation - I work for a great company and have for almost 7 years. When i told them (and I felt I had to for the amount of tests that I was having) all i got in response was support and understanding. Maybe they are checking my work more - but I don't think so. I just got a very favorable review and a nice raise. Its your call - I will tell you this, if I was to change jobs I wouldn't tell my new employer unless necessary (I get montly infustions of tysabri so that might cause an issue) so it depends on the relationship that you have with your company.
I have not yet been DX'd but I have been up front with my boss, co-workers and my staff from the start. They have been a great source of support for me. It is hard to take so much time off for doctors appointments and tests without telling them something. And if I am finally diagnosed with it I think they will be more than understanding. I guess it is good that I work for a social service agency so compassion is the basis of our work. As it stands I have 2 employees who are disabled and no one thinks twice about their circumstances...one is wheel chair bound and the other blind in one eye and tunnel vision in the other. I know the agency also has a woman working us who has had a brain tumor removed leading to a lot of memory loss for her. No one uses it against her. Instead we all work very hard to accomodate all these disabilities from adding wheel chair ramps to special computer programs. I guess it is all depends on your employer.
Not only does it depend on the employer, but it depends on the 'individual' that you are working for. The company can have a slogan or 'claim' they are family oriented, but, again, an individual employee who may have a position in management and be your Supervisor, or something along those lines, could "have it out" for anyone they can find a weak spot in. They could then go 'after' that employee and just have it 'out' for them. What counts the most these days for employers is NUMBERS. No matter what position you are in, how high up in the company you get, YOU are a number, and you PRODUCE a number, no matter how far away from Sales you are. Eventually, if you cost them enough in NUMBERS, they will find a way to get rid of you. No employer wants to see a decrease in ANY area. They see a decrease, they FIX it. That 'fix' could be YOU.
We must ALL be so careful with our jobs these days. The 2 income family, '1' loses their job, their lives could be ruined financially. It is the luck of the draw sometimes.
This opinion is just an opinion based upon what I have experienced myself in the 'corporate' world. All business' are the 'corporate world' anymore. When you're strong, you're strong; when you're weak, they stomp you!
I guess I am very fortunate that there isn't anyone in our agency like that. Actually they are so afraid of being sued for discrimination they keep people on when they should not. We have had disabled people employed by us who are terrible at their jobs that has nothing to do with their disability but due to anti-discrimation laws they hold on to the person to the bitter end. One man I remember had a TBI and was just terrible. He was neglectful, spent hours on the phone making personal calls, left work to go wash his car, would walk out in the middle of his shift to work on his car in the parking lot, etc etc. It finally took time and attendance fraud which we could prove before we could finally give him the ax. They were so afraid he would turn around and file a wrongful termination suit.
Here's a thought-since you are taking an anti-anxiety med (ativan did you say?)
Perhaps that could be worsening your cognitive symptoms?
My doctor put me on Xanax and when I was taking it, my brain was pretty much useless.
Perhaps there is some naturopathic remedy you could try for sleep.
Of course, you know what is best for you, since lack of sleep will leave you cognitively challenged as well.
I got off the xanax and still have a bit of a fog...(yesterday was the first time I put something that should have gone in the refrigerator into the cabinet instead-my husband was amused, but I wasn't...)
I am much better than I was when I was taking xanax, though.