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Sasquatch
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May 23, 2019 2:36 pm  

Hey all, I'm looking for advice here.  I'm looking at possibly making a job change, is the fact I have an ostomy something that needs to be brought to the attention of a new employer?  If so, when is the right time time to disclose this?  I feel like it's something that should be discussed at some point with someone, but when/who is what I'm struggling with.  I don't feel like my ostomy holds me back, but I don't want it to become the reason I didn't get a job.

UC since 2002, subtotal colectomy Dec. 2016, proctolectomy Nov. 2018.


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sjlovestosing
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May 23, 2019 3:16 pm  

Hi Sasquatch,

Having an ostomy shouldn't impact your getting employment. Here in the USA, the Equal Opportunity Act prevents an employer from not hiring you based on gender, race, religion, handicap, etc. That said, you probably should be up front about your ostomy and assure your prospective employer that having an ostomy does not limit your ability to do your work efficiently and safely.
Good luck!
Stella


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dogtalkerer
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May 23, 2019 3:20 pm  

Oh, bad idea.   for one you can be looked upon as a probable liability, and two, its a bad idea to think a potential employer knows more about the limits of ostomys more  than you do?  

you should,  more or less know your own limits.   and what possible jobs could be too much of a risk to yourself or other people.    myself, I always push my limits a little at a time.


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Marcie
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May 23, 2019 3:35 pm  

I would not give out information until the  job is truly yours and of course u have to get drug tested, health check-- THEN only then after the health check you can mention this-- If it doesn't bother you then why should it bother them ? 

Getting a different job to suit YOURSELF as an ostomate is because the other job did not match-- many people get new jobs and or hold their jobs being like us.  We r just better is all !! 

Good Luck!  Marcie........... 

 

2014 - 3 strangulations of colon, Ulcerative colitis, removal of colon, illiostomcy named woooh Nellie..


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LK
 LK
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May 23, 2019 5:47 pm  

Sasquatch-This is a very good question. Can you share what is causing you to think a change is needed? This is not an easy life with an ostomy, and/or with an IBD to boot, it certainly can have its complications and surprises. Lets be honest, being a man and needing to work are two of them, especially if there is a family to support. That is not say it is not the same for women, and single women, but I believe the expectations just because you are a "man" in general are greater. What goes on behind closed doors right? Being young as your photo says you are, you are likely looking at work for the rest of your life. You have to be happy a what you choose to do and it has to suit you health as well. Would you be able to get in writing from your present boss something that says how he/she was impacted because of your ostomy? Hopefully something that would be encouraging to a future boss. Honesty is huge to me, so I think it is important to be up front with a new potential boss. Maybe a trial period to prove yourself. During that time be extremely careful to eat what really works so you have no surprise situations right away. I admire you seeking a change and encourage you to advocate well for yourself. If need be, go armed with doctors notes. Find an advocate ahead of time in case you need help. There is always a politician, tell them you'll thank them on the evening news! All the best here! Please Keep us in the loop.

Linda


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sjlovestosing
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May 23, 2019 8:21 pm  

Thanks, Linda. That was my point exactly. We need to be honest rather than try to hide our condition especially if the work is of a physical nature. I think that you have very good thoughts on the matter as well. Having a recommendation from the former boss and from a doctor or two may be very helpful in getting a new job and reassuring the new boss. 

Stella

 


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john68
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May 24, 2019 1:54 am  

Hi Sasquatch I agree with Linda and Stella, in an interview it’s promoting your self and your work achievements and values. It’s going to be more of an issue brought up later. If this new employer has a problem with you being an ostomate it’s a job best forgotten. Wishing you every success 

ileostomy 31st August 1994 for Crohns


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VeganOstomy
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May 24, 2019 1:32 pm  

There definitely are some cases where disclosure should be made up front, however, you would still be protected by the ADA and I think most employers would recognize that. 

If you think that accommodations would need to be made for you (i.e. having closer access to a washroom), then it may be helpful to bring that up sooner, rather than later. 

Generally speaking, it's in everyone's best interest to have all cards on the table so there are no surprises later on - a good employer will recognize that your skills, past experience, etc. are what makes a good employer, not how they use the bathroom. 

Best of luck either way! 

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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IleosTony
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May 24, 2019 2:44 pm  

Hi Sasquatch,

 

Without knowing the nature of the job you are thinking of changing to, we can only counsel you in general terms. There's a fine line between oversharing and giving necessary information. If you don't think there will be any need for special accommodations, as Eric advises, and the way in which someone is different is not obvious, I'm of the opinion that disclosure is completely optional and might not always be the wisest route.

 

This is a much debated philosophical issue among those of us who are blind where seeking employment is concerned. Misconceptions about what people without sight can and can't do (mostly can't) are less common than they have been historically but still persist, so we struggle with the question of full disclosure.

 

I've had the blessing of being able to work from home. I've worked for a few companies who never had a clue that I couldn't see if my life depended on it because I never met the people I worked with. In the instances where it became necessary to disclose, I did so without hesitation, but by then I had usually proven myself as a valuable worker.

 

Finally, I have to agree with the opinions voiced in this topic already. Depending on the nature of your job, it seems more likely than not that you should disclose that you have an ostomy. Be prepared to answer questions about it, as such information would probably go a long way toward easing the mind of your employer regarding any associated concerns. At the very least, being up front with information and answering questions might even go some way toward breaking the ice, as it would demonstrate your level of comfort and competence in coping with and managing your own ostomy-related needs.

 

Just my two cents. Hope that helps.

Tony
Crohn's diagnosed in 1995.
Spontaneous colon perforation and emergency end ileostomy surgery in 2018.
No colon - still rollin'!
No eyesight - life still bright!
Stomaversary - December 4th


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zhtfreak
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May 24, 2019 5:44 pm  

Disclosing special needs as it relates to work is an interesting topic, and one that has made me super cynical over the last couple years.

Tony is correct that disclosure is much debated among job seekers who are blind like myself. I've been looking for around four years since I graduated college in 2015, and all I came up with was a work from home job doing tech support that ended up being way too stressful for me, so I quit after a couple months because I saw the writing on the wall and would've been fired for underperforming had I stayed, even though the company was looking for blind applicants. Of the 8 people I started out in training with, 6 of us, 75%, were gone within two months after training.

I've always felt like going into an interview, I may as well be wearing a big flashing sign that says "I'm different and will need accomodations", the therefore feel like I get instantly judged.

As for disclosing, I've had people tell me to do it both ways, but I tend to agree with everyone who says don't do it until you have to. Yes, there is protection from the ADA here in the states, but people can just get around that by coming up with another reason why they don't want to hire you, which has always left me wondering.

Since I don't have an ostomy anymore, I would think that one would be less of an issue than a more obvious one like having no sight, depending of course on the type of work you'd be doing. I would think the biggest impact would be if you had to change your pouch in the middle of your shift. If you can assure the employer that your ostomy wouldn't hinder your job performance, hopefully they would be understanding.

Brian


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Marcie
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May 24, 2019 8:42 pm  

Brian, My husband is a Nuclear Power Engineer...retired…  He has worked along with a blind man for over 40 years.  This man travels through out the U.S.A. and Europe and holds a strong position in this field.  The only thing he cant do is drive the car.  I have met this man a few times, and found him interesting, and positive in every way.  I also worked with a blind man in the 70's, he was better at this job than many others in his field.  Never mind the laughs we  had.  

 

I am sorry you r experancing this error in life's employment-- but trust me--there is a place for you in your field-------Don't give up!!  You sound to me as a professional-and much fun to be around with.  Enjoying ones company along side a job is so important.. You are the type of person that makes a job go well and smoothly.  

Wish we lived closer and I was younger-- We would make a good team.. 

 

Best to you my friend..  Marcie..

2014 - 3 strangulations of colon, Ulcerative colitis, removal of colon, illiostomcy named woooh Nellie..


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Marcie
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May 25, 2019 11:45 am  

P.S. Brian, This blind man I worked with in the 1970's -- Yes, he was invited to a party once, and he drove a car..! I gather he had a few, along with the others.  But this adventure was the high light for years to come..  Still in my memories.   

We worked for the Government of Ct. U.S.A. as lay offs were in affect-  he remained strong within his employee until his retirement--BECAUSE he did a great job--and did not depend on others-- And there were NO computers during this age. 

He never seemed disabled to me or others.  I guess this is why he got the extra help or errands WE thought he needed (bringing him lunch when over worked-etc..) Just being nice to a fellow worker.. WE followed his example of kindness and it just made a nice working status for us all. 

 

so, go out there my friend--YOU will be hired and loved too.

Marcie. 

2014 - 3 strangulations of colon, Ulcerative colitis, removal of colon, illiostomcy named woooh Nellie..


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LK
 LK
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May 25, 2019 6:19 pm  

Brian...Even today, when we are supposed to be more tolerant, understanding, patient and accepting of so much more then ever, to others and to disabilities, attitudes are sadly, lacking desperately.  A bad experience stays with some forever and others just until they turn a corner.  In living with an undiagnosed bowel disease for most of my life, I experienced attitudes among friends and family, bosses, doctors, nurses, and even Pastors.  I learned from those experiences, who I could trust, when and why. How much I could tell one person and who to tell a white lie to.  I did however learn that as long as a boss knew there could be a problem, no matter how slight, it always paid to tell them the "ifs" up front, and certain allowances were made. One boss, changed "her" office schedule to when I worked, so that she could take over if I had something going on. She said in the long run this allowed her better time in the office as I was proving myself very capable. I hope you can find a job that is suitable to you really soon, if you have not already.  I understand being a bit burnt about this because of your experience, but sometimes I think it is up to us with these "changes" in our life to  train the bosses to be more tolerant also. 

Linda


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Sasquatch
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May 30, 2019 4:03 pm  

Thank you all for your opinions on this.  I'm planning on keeping it my little secret, at least through the hiring process.  I'm attempting to go from a manufacturing support/maintenance position to a shipping and receiving position.  The main drive behind it is to work closer to home.  I spend an hour and a half on the road everyday, going to and coming home from work.  I have an interview with a company tomorrow afternoon, that is 9 minutes from home.  The 10 hour  shifts I'm working now coupled with the commute are really wearing on me.  I should be able to work the same 10 shift and feel as though I worked about 8.  The other factor is, that much of our production is being shifted to our facility in Mexico.  I believe the last of the lines going south will be sent in early November.  I'm not sure how long my job will be safe, though, I feel I would be safe until then, as I am part of the crew packaging them for shipment.  I think it would be wise on my part to transition on my own, with no unemployed gaps.

UC since 2002, subtotal colectomy Dec. 2016, proctolectomy Nov. 2018.


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LK
 LK
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May 30, 2019 6:31 pm  

I think that is a very wise choice you are making. I certainly understand the stress a commute can have on the human body when one is well, but it is hard to find a washroom in rush hour traffic. Let us know the outcome, I already said a prayer for you! I love that smile of yours young one! 

Linda


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VeganOstomy
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May 31, 2019 9:31 am  

Long commutes are brutal! I can understand wanting to switch if only for that, but it sounds like you're making a good move in anticipation for what may come later this year. Good luck with everything! 

Just your friendly neighborhood ostomate.

~ Crohn's Disease ¦ Ileostomy ~


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john68
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May 31, 2019 11:57 am  

That’s a brilliant move, less travel time, less stress, lower carbon footprint. Best wishes for the interview 👍

ileostomy 31st August 1994 for Crohns


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Raine
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May 31, 2019 1:20 pm  

I hope it goes well and you get the job.  We're kind of in the same boat, except I'm a " bit" older and job hunting.  My rule is don't tell until you have to.  Years ago I had to disclose crohns because I was really sick.  My last job, it was when I was  heading towards surgery.  

Fingers crossed for you!

Raine


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LK
 LK
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June 1, 2019 5:36 am  

Sasquatch- also, thank you for sharing what your up to and why. This is a good discussion for those that get to work. Most see a strong young man, and we all know that being a man comes with the expectation to be able to work even before seeing the inside of the cover. In reading your previous posts on other forums, you are a very able and capable worker. But, the stoma and the disease itself write their own story and timeline.  By taking control of your situation, you are not only protecting the present but also your future. Just keep looking forward and things will soon fall into place. Sometimes, we have to give a nudge, or a shove, but it is always worth it. 

Linda


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Sasquatch
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June 8, 2019 7:27 pm  

New job will start on June 24th.  Had to take a little of a pay cut, but not much really.  The position is an inventory coordinator, and my commute will shrink to about 12 minutes.  just thought I'd let all of you know.

UC since 2002, subtotal colectomy Dec. 2016, proctolectomy Nov. 2018.


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