Mental Health in the Workplace: To Tell or Not to Tell

This is Samantha guest posting today on mental health in the workplace. If you have received a mental health diagnosis, whether it was anxiety or schizophrenia, you have most likely faced some tough calls when it came to opening up about your mental illness in your place of employment. Not everyone is comfortable when it comes to opening up about this portion of their life, and they keep their secret guarded at all costs.

It took me years – and creating my own mental health blog – before I felt comfortable enough to share my own mental health diagnoses with an employer. Given my erratic behavior on occasions while at work, I would occasionally have to come to terms with the fact that I needed to explain some of what was going on with my mental health in the workplace. Otherwise I feared termination from a position that I so desperately needed to keep. Especially if I wanted to survive while being an adult out in the real world, with real bills to pay.

The Stigma of Mental Health in the Workplace

The mental health stigma is real and it’s misunderstood. So I am not here to tell you that you need to be honest with your employer about your mental health in the workplace. That alone is your choice, and only your choice to make. Don’t ever let anyone force you into sharing sensitive personal information about yourself unless you are 100 percent comfortable with disclosing it. What I can offer you are some of the pros and cons of telling or not telling your place of employment about your mental health based on my own experiences.

I have had times when revealing my true self worked out being beneficial, while other instances of being open about it led to me ultimately being treated unfairly along with feeling helplessly judged and targeted by my peers.

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