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Posted by Mary on October 26, 2000 at 10:31:30:

In Reply to: 23-year-old police officer with ADD...affecting work...please help!!! posted by Jacqueline on October 25, 2000 at 17:45:49:

: Hi,

: I have been a police officer for two years, and I was diagnosed with ADD when I was 14. I stopped taking Ritalin when I was 19.

: But more and more I feel it is affeting my job, and I am afraid it is going to result on myself or a fellow officer being injured. Sometimes I get bored during what should be a high intensity situation, or I act impulsively. I am VERY concerned.

: I do not want to go back on Ritalin. I feel it helps me, but I can only imagine the bad press if anyone where to find out. Plus, none of my superiors (or anyone else on the force, for that matter) know about my condition.

: I am writing because just the other day, during a high risk vehicle stop, my job was to watch the driver's side of the vehicle while holding up my long gun, sitting in the dirver's seat of my squad car. If I saw any weapon whatsoever, I was supposed to yell, "GUN!!!"

: Well, the suspect emerged, and I was off in never-never land. He had a gun in the waistline of his pants, which I never saw. I feel horrible. Someone could have been killed. On account of me.

: Please respond.

: Jackie

The first thing you need to do is alert your supervisor to your ADD diagnosis. It is worse to hide a medical problem from your place of employment than to take the drugs to keep things under control. If you have a known medical problem that needs treatment and were not taking the medication needed for it and something happened I am sure you would most definately be liable. Talk this over with your superior and get back on treatment before something happens that could cost you your job as well as a lawsuit from someone. You are protected by the American Disabilites Act so your job should not be in jeopardy for letting your superiors know about this.

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