- Why do those with bipolar disorder have so much trouble working? I get so anxious thinking about it. How many times have I quit and walked out? How many jobs have I had since I was a teenager? I’ve been stressed even being a cashier ... watching the clock, anxiety, anger, irritability, depression. When I am hypomanic, I get all the jobs. I take a job, go to work happily, but then it starts to go downhill. I sometimes have 4 to 6 weeks, sometimes 1 to 2 days before I end up quitting or getting fired.
~ Wendy, a member of our Forums
- My problem is usually attendance -- getting to work on time or at all. I've been either almost or actually fired from every job I've ever had for that reason. I do good work when I'm there (and well), but getting my act together well enough to get there is the problem.
~ MJ, a member of our Forums
So what can be done? In the United States, a possible solution may be disability benefits from Social Security. In this series of articles, we explore this option.
Understanding Disability Benefits – The Series
- I Can’t Hold a Job! What Do I Do? – Introduction
- What is Disability?
- Do I Qualify for Disability?
- Is Bipolar Disorder a Qualified Condition for Disability?
- How Do I Start My Disability Application?
- What Information and Paperwork Do I Need?
- What Happens with My Application?
- How Long Will It Take to Get Benefits?
- What Benefits Will I Get?
- Who Can Help Me?
A significant portion of this material was contributed by Jonathan A. Abbott, a lawyer specializing in Social Security and SSI disability benefits advocacy. Abbott is also an active member of our Forums who regularly contributes to the discussions in the Work & Disability Issues folder. Material written by Abbott is indicated as such.