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How do you manage to keep a job down ?



Well-known member
Jun 21, 2009
Hi All,

I'm new to the forum - hello. Been manic for a week, diagnosed with bi-polar 12 years ago - with depression 30 years ago.

My issues is keeping hold of work, I've relocated 3 times in 5 years. Lost one job because my boss’s wife saw me at the Psychiatrists - I'd even been promoted a month before he sacked "people like me”! Lost my second job, because my Manager was not happy with me taking time off ill. If you go in ill, they keep asking you “what’s wrong?”, “Why are you hiding away?”

Prior to Bi-polar my career was riding high and a big part of my life. To sit unemployed, makes me ill. Now I wonder what sort of work I can do - anything unegaging would depress me – but then again maybe I need to avoid the stress of a senior roll? Has anyone figured this one out? Would love to hear your experiences. I haven't found an employer that takes disabilities that you cannot see, seriously, so I guess its about working round the system, some how ???? Anyone in a career, let me know how you got there – Thanks.


I have had to deal with things by not working for 12 years. But I lead a productive & fulfilled life; considering what I have been up against. I don't want a job that would make me ill, I am presently unable to work. We are very much brought up to believe that we have to work to lead a full life. We can have roles & actions in our lives that are meaningful without being in a full time job. That's my opinion on it anyway. Some jobs are more necessary than others.

Anyway - welcome to the site.


Well-known member
Nov 23, 2008
Belfast, N.Ireland
Hi there,
I have not worked for 15 years now. It used to depress me not being able to work. I had managed to get a Ba in the States when I was living there. I have never used that degree. I had dreams and aspirations when I was in my early 20's - not many of them happened - but I have accepted that now and moved on.

Apotheosis said it perfectly by stating that you can still live a productive life and still be ill. I have done all sorts of courses that have been in the community and are free. I am qualified as a peer advocate. I have just about every computer course going, under my belt!! Even when doing some of these courses, I dropped out of some of them when my symptoms were very bad and then when I felt a little better, I would go and finish them.

I have no children of my own - but I do take my sister's kids out to the park, movies etc /. I love spending time with them. I enjoy going to the movies - especially foreign and low budget that are shown in the local university cinema. There are so many things that you can do that are 'out there' that will occupy and fill you day.
Maybe you might consider volunteer work? You can get any type of job at any level. You choose what you want to do and how many hours you want to do.
Good luck,


Well-known member
Feb 26, 2009
Yeah everyone is right it is possible to live a fulfilled life.

I'm bipolar and in my early 20's. I work a number of free lance jobs, data anlyst, writer and model. my depressive episodes normally effect my work but I have learned how to cope. In photoshoot esspecally I want to run away and hide and convince my self how horrid i am, but i push myself to go on and the photos normally come out well even though i never thought they would have.

My way of coping with depression is just to push forward. Life may feel awful at the moment but it gets better. I always try to find something to look forward too to cheer myself up during the day, be that seeing my bf or going somewhere with my friends. Or if i am really down I text my best friend and she always has something to cheer me up and drag me of the dark hole that i have pushed myself into.


Hi Happychappy

I'm so sorry you had bad experiences at work. That was so wrong of your boss sacking you because his wife saw you at the psychiatrists, that could be grounds for taking him to court for discrimination.

I have found voluntary work to be really helpful to me, and you can find some pretty challenging and engaging roles that might not require your attendance on a regular basis. The directgov site has a whole list of available voluntary jobs


Where I work, we do have persons suffering with illnesses, who just show up as and when they are feeling okay. We don't put them on the rota so they don't feel committed and they give us no notice, they just show up. They are always a welcome sight because we need as many extra hands as we can get.


Well-known member
May 12, 2009
discriminating employers

:mad: that your boss should sack 'people like us' :mad:

it's awful that you have not found any employer who is ok with sick-time taken for an 'illness you can't see'.

my experience of the NHS as an employer has been positive. an occupational health nurse said to me recently, that if they didn't support staff with mental health problems in their employment, then the hospital wouldn't have many staff left!!

i am also waiting for re-deployment at the moment. i changed job in the middle of a manic episode, and i clearly cannot manage the stress of the job and the shifts, unless i am manic! if a suitable vacancy cannot be found for me, then my employment will be terminated. i, too, struggle with not working, i get so depressed. but the nature of bipolar does make consistency in work very difficult. so maybe, i will go down the voluntary work route. i often wondered how organisations can cope with people like me, who may not be too consistent. it's good to know that i could still be useful, by not being on a rota, and just turning up when i can. obviously, we'll miss my income! but i don't think the money is worth the stress. we will still have enough to live on (just)! :unsure:
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