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Q:  My psychiatrist has diagnosed me with Bipolar II. Since I originally diagnosed by a physician, I have been unable to work, due to the tremendous amount of stress and anxiety I feel daily. I am currently taking Wellbutrin XR75 twice per day, as well as a mood stabilizer (which I don't have the name of handy). These do not seem to be having a great impact on my condition. I feel more anxious and apprehensive now than when I began treatment. I was drawing short-term disability for my time away from work, but due to an apparent lack of communication at the company that handles the claim, my benefits ended prematurely and I am having a tremendous amount of trouble getting this taken care of as well. Finally, my psychiatrist is expecting to release me to return to work on Monday, April 3rd, and quite frankly, I don't believe I am mentally prepared for this. I know you cannot comment on much of this, but is there an easy way to tell my psychiatrist that I do not feel I can return to work so that he doesn't pass the "release" work off to either my company or the disability claims  personnel? I fear that if I am forced to return to work, I will say or do the wrong thing at the wrong time and be out of a job.


Dear T,

I'm responding to this late already so I want to get right to the point for you.  Directness and honesty are fine qualities both of which you seem to possess.  Take a copy of this email to your psychiatrist along with a written list of observable, specific and objective behaviors which you believe prevent you from being "mentally prepared" for your return to work.  Other than that you're quite clear to me.  Good luck on your extension. 


David Schafer, M.Ed.
Staff Psychologist


Published May, 2006

 

 

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