Do you all have jobs?

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Veronica Ballerina
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 69
   Posted 6/17/2008 9:44 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello Everybody
 
Everybody here has jobs? I mean how do you deal with Crohn in your jobs?  Did anybody have to stop working because of Crohn? I do not know if it is only me or if this is normal, but I feel so tired and in pain almost all the time that I do not know if can handle anymore.
I was diagnosed in Dec 2007 and I have been hospitalized 7 times since then. My Crohn is very agressive.
Thanks

Veronica Nunes - 27 years - Brazil


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 6/17/2008 10:21 AM (GMT -7)   
I have lived with a milder form of Crohns for almost 33 years. Except for a few years when my children were very young, I have always worked. I have been at my current job for over 18 years. I do have very supportive bosses and coworkers though.

That wasn't always the case though, because when I first started I was in the midst of a 20 year remission. What made people really realize that I was really sick was when I had to have a emergency resection due to a complete obstruction.

Hopefully once you can get your disease under control, you will feel better about working.

Hope you feel better soon.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.


LBJ
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 511
   Posted 6/17/2008 10:22 AM (GMT -7)   
I work full time plus have a 2 1/2 year old son. My crohn's is very mild though so I'm able to work. I only have problems when I have a bad flare and they don't happen often. For the most part I am drug free. But I went into a flare last month and having problems so I'm pred. for awhile.
Living with Crohn's Disease since Jan./2000 but had a few years prior
Still trying to figure out if I truely have it.
(This is such a confusing disease)
 
Meds I have tried:  Just about everything 
Meds currently on:  Prednisone 35mg tapering
No Surgeries
 


Mormor Vicky
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 684
   Posted 6/17/2008 11:10 AM (GMT -7)   
I've been working at my job for 31 years.  I really don't know how I made it before my resection but since I've been in remission I don't have any problems.  I do have a desk job, very understanding boss, great medical benefits and lots of vacation time I use when I just can't make it.
 
When I was at my sickest, I would curl up in my cubicle and take naps when I was really, really out of it.  Only got caught once, but it was only a month later that I had my surgery so now my boss knows the reason. 
 
The great thing is I'm the highest producer at work and so everyone has always given me a little slack when I'm not at 100%.  They know that I always give as much as I can and I never take advantage of it.
Vicky / 48 years old
DX'd with Crohn's during a resection August 2006
DX'd with Steriod induced Diabetes November 2006
Considered in Clinical remission but have minor signs of disease activity
 
Daughter (27) also has Crohn's since she was 12.
 
Currently on 4000mg of Pentasa only for Crohn's
No longer able to take 6-MP because of Bone-Marrow Suppression
Cymbalta, Metformin, Lipitor


Jen77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2688
   Posted 6/17/2008 11:14 AM (GMT -7)   
I stopped working in 2006. I had a really stressful job, and flared so badly that it landed me in the hospital. Thankfully I have a husband that can support our family fine without my working. Otherwise I'm sure I probably would be on much stronger medications, and probably a surgery or two. I do much better staying home, and taking care of myself.
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Prednisone: tapered to 20 mg, Asacol, Questran, Toprol XL (for high blood pressure).


Veronica Ballerina
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 69
   Posted 6/17/2008 12:00 PM (GMT -7)   
Jen77 said...
I stopped working in 2006. I had a really stressful job, and flared so badly that it landed me in the hospital. Thankfully I have a husband that can support our family fine without my working. Otherwise I'm sure I probably would be on much stronger medications, and probably a surgery or two. I do much better staying home, and taking care of myself.

Well, my husband offered me to do the same, although I am affraid to get depressed staying at home alone all the time, but I don't think I can handle anymore, I have terrible joint pain, bearable can walk due this, despite the abdominal pain. I have tried all kind of meds I suppose, Remicade has been doing good effects on me, I am not feeling great but better than nothing, but it does not last very long, after sort of 40 days I start flaring up all over again and have to go to the hospital and then you all know the story...
I have told my job coleagues about my condition, which was not my surprise they don't know anything about it, one of them told me, "Yeah, I know what you mean, I got the flu last week."
I love my job, and what I do, but it is getting each day harder and harder...When I got home after work I go to shower and go directly to bed, because I am always exhausted, I spend the whole weekend at bed due the tiredness too, the weird thing is when I get out of hospital I am feeling good, rested, but it is just come back to work that I got bad again.
People I swear I am not lazy, but it is getting difficult to me, and people seem to don't understand me very weel.
I am affraid to take a decision and regret later.
 
Jen77, Do you regret stop working? How do you deal with the depression that may appear some day?

Veronica Nunes - 27 years - Brazil


aoccc
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 455
   Posted 6/17/2008 12:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Got rid of the stressful job years ago, took a one with little to none..it was well worth the small pay cut.
SCD since 01, remission since 01, occasional Arby's breaks :)


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 6/17/2008 12:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Veronica maybe you can just take some time off to get yourself well. I don't know if in Brazil if they have any kind of leave of absence, but that is something I have had to do when I was really ill.

Also, have you spoken to your doctor about maybe increasing the frequency of your Remicade treatments? Maybe you aren't getting the medication often enough to control your disease. I know some people on the board have increased the frequency of their infusions and it has been a big help. Maybe that would help you to start feeling better. Just a thought.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.


Matthew
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 3932
   Posted 6/17/2008 12:47 PM (GMT -7)   
During the bad years, right after my dx in the early '90s, I only worked part-time. But then my illness was not controlled back then..
I have worked full time ever since Feb. 1996 doing several jobs. My CD sometimes interefere but I haven't lost any work from it..

Sincerely,
Matthew

Kittikatt
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 6/17/2008 1:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Back when I first started to get sick, I was working a FT job as a financial analyst and two PT jobs, one as a on-air DJ and one as a personal development instructor for teenage girls.

As I got sicker, and doctors couldn't figure out what was wrong with me, I had to quit my DJ'ing job. There just wasn't enough time inbetween songs to run to the other side of the building where the bathroom was...I only had ONE dead-air moment, though, so KUDOS to me.

A year after I left the radio station, I found out I had Crohn's. Once I was put on medication, I went into remission for 4 years so I was able to continue the FT job and the other PT job.

It wasn't until this year that I had my first major flare since initially being diagnosed. I couldn't function on a daily basis anymore so I had to quit my PT teaching job. I haven't decided at this point if I'm going to go back. I'm feeling better but I'm not back to normal and the teaching job takes a lot of time and energy, particularly as a PT job.

So I continue on with my FT financial job. Like others have mentioned, I have great benefits, a VERY understanding boss and excellent sick and annual leave. I have also been given permission to work from home at my discretion. I live 2 miles from my office, so that works out well. I haven't told most people in my office about my Crohn's so I very rarely take advantage of the "work from home" deal so as not to draw attention to that (otherwise EVERYONE would want to do that!). I also currently have a mild form of Crohn's so I do my best to be at work as much as possible because I'm aware that mildness may change one day. But there are definitely days that are super tough at work. I sure wish we had a radio in our bathroom!!! That would make for a MUCH more relaxing environment for me in "those" situations.
Diagnosed in October, 2004 at age 33.
36/F/SC
Current Rx's: Colazal (generic), Nexium (generic), Ferrous Sulfate, One-A-Day multivitamin, Culturelle Probiotic, Omega-3 Fish Oil, Vitamin D, Vitamin A, Calcium-Magnesium-Zinc, Cranberry pills
Secondary conditions: mouth ulcers, joint pain, swelling ankles, extreme fatigue
Previous/occasional Rx's: 20mg Prednisone taper, Flagyl, Levaquin
No surgeries to date


kam#7
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 125
   Posted 6/17/2008 2:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I am so fortunate that I have a job that enables me to work from home. I have not worked in an office since my diagnosis in 2002. I cannot even imagine dealing with the stress of the whole office bathroom scene, although from what I have read here, a lot of people successfully deal with this.

Take care -
KAM

35 year old female
Diagnosed w/Crohn's 2002
Bowel resection 2004

Currently taking:

  • Pentasa 500mg 3X2
  • Entocort 3mg 1X3
  • Immodium as needed
  • Zoloft 150mg 1X1
  • Wellbutrin 150mg 1X1
  • Seroquel 200mg 1X1


MMMNAVY
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 6/17/2008 2:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I was in the Navy, so obviously I lost my career and also my secondary career of choice (law enforcement) was eliminated as well. Granted I had some other medical issues and still cannot walk without a limp. But I am back at school (part time for the most part) and getting degrees in a different field.
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease
We will find a way, or make one.-Hannibal (crossing the Alps in the 15th Century on war elephants) 
Make sure your suffering has meaning...-?
All suggestions/options/opinions are caveated with please consult with your local health care provider...


not creative
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 466
   Posted 6/17/2008 2:13 PM (GMT -7)   
I got fired from a restaurant for calling off sick (once) too soon before my shift- it sucked, but there was nothing I could do about it as I hadn't worked there more than a year.

Now, I work for the State and I have sick time and I use it when I need it. Today for example, I stayed home because I was exhausted from having D the past two days (it really saps all my energy). My boss has a daughter with CD so he's pretty understanding.
Laurenne, 23 Student @ University of California, Davis.
Dx'd w/ IBS and CD in 2002
On Humira, Strattera, Zoloft, (Multivitamin, Flax Oil, and Omega complex when I remember.)


ivy6
Elite Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 6/17/2008 4:28 PM (GMT -7)   
I have never been able to hold down more than a casual job, and only then occasionally. I have what one doctor has called top-level Crohn's.

The doctors said that they'd like to get me well enough to be able to get a part-time job, but it hasn't happened yet.

I.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.


pix
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 134
   Posted 6/17/2008 6:17 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been able to work full time, again, as others have mentioned, I have some accomodations. I am a boss, and my boss isn't in my building, so there is no one looking over my shoulder. Also, my job doesn't have a rigid schedule during the day, so I can "be flexible". Here is the nicest perk, though, I have a bathroom in my office!!! I have some books in there, and no one really knows how much time I spend in there. I get my work done, so the Crohns isn't really an issue. My colleagues do know, and I haven't gotten any flack.

Pix

Rider Fan
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 1445
   Posted 6/17/2008 6:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Wow Pix, that sounds pretty awesome!
Dx'ed in 1999. No surgeries.

Current meds: 75 mg 6MP. 20mg prednisone.  Udo's Choice Probiotics (30 billion).


potatoqwn
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 355
   Posted 6/17/2008 7:10 PM (GMT -7)   
I was a stay at home mom when I was diagnosed. My Crohn's was completely out of control and I sometimes (ok, many times) could not leave the house. After several years, I got a better handle on it. I had some changes in my life that required me to go back to work full time. It was very hard at first, but got better and easier as the years went on. Now I am very well controlled with medication and can do it without becoming completely exhausted and sick.

It does sound to me like you need to give yourself a break, take it easy and take care of yourself. If that means not working for a while, then so be it. I wish you well.

ski bum
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 451
   Posted 6/17/2008 7:53 PM (GMT -7)   
I work full time. Part-time would be a better balance for me, but it's not an option right now. Pix, I want your job, and your private bathroom!
50 y/o F. CD dx'd Aug 05. Initially on Pentasa, then Imuran 125 mg. Started Humira (very reluctantly) on 10/24/07. Ileocolectomy 4/08.


SydneyJo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1354
   Posted 6/17/2008 9:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I work casual hours up to 18 hours a week. We have numerous bathrooms so I can pick and choose the least used. My bosses are very accommodating and realise when I am not "at my best' and dont expect too much from me. Jo

Jen77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 2688
   Posted 6/17/2008 9:31 PM (GMT -7)   
Veronica Nunes said...
Jen77 said...
I stopped working in 2006. I had a really stressful job, and flared so badly that it landed me in the hospital. Thankfully I have a husband that can support our family fine without my working. Otherwise I'm sure I probably would be on much stronger medications, and probably a surgery or two. I do much better staying home, and taking care of myself.

Well, my husband offered me to do the same, although I am affraid to get depressed staying at home alone all the time, but I don't think I can handle anymore, I have terrible joint pain, bearable can walk due this, despite the abdominal pain. I have tried all kind of meds I suppose, Remicade has been doing good effects on me, I am not feeling great but better than nothing, but it does not last very long, after sort of 40 days I start flaring up all over again and have to go to the hospital and then you all know the story...
I have told my job coleagues about my condition, which was not my surprise they don't know anything about it, one of them told me, "Yeah, I know what you mean, I got the flu last week."
I love my job, and what I do, but it is getting each day harder and harder...When I got home after work I go to shower and go directly to bed, because I am always exhausted, I spend the whole weekend at bed due the tiredness too, the weird thing is when I get out of hospital I am feeling good, rested, but it is just come back to work that I got bad again.
People I swear I am not lazy, but it is getting difficult to me, and people seem to don't understand me very weel.
I am affraid to take a decision and regret later.
 
Jen77, Do you regret stop working? How do you deal with the depression that may appear some day?

 
Well, we also have a 10 year old son, that I homeschool. So even though I'm home, I stay pretty busy. Which is what you'll learn to do, if you decide to do that. Throw yourself in to hobbies, and things you'd like to do. Things are on your terms when your home. Need a nap? Take one. Need just chill because of joint pain. Chill out! Feel good and want to go do something? Go for it. It's nice having that freedom, I know I spent many days at my desk at work in pain, or so tired I thought about crawling under the desk for a nap! But still had like 6 hours still I could go home! 
 
It is harder when you have a job that you love, that's for sure. I hated that job, so when I got sick, it was almost like my body telling me it was finally time to let go of it! I was a stay at home Mom before I worked as well. So being at home was something I was used to before, and I actually do love it. But finding something that you love to do, but being able to do it on your time, and how you feel really helps those "home blues".
~Jennifer
 
Diagnosed with Crohn's Disease 2/06 after sever GI bleed. Has been suffering since 1998. History of rectal fistula and gallbladder removal. Currently taking Prednisone: tapered to 20 mg, Asacol, Questran, Toprol XL (for high blood pressure).


Krica
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 99
   Posted 6/18/2008 3:20 AM (GMT -7)   
i have not been working for 3 years, but i was doing my degree. Now i feel healthy and planning back to work. Maybe having my own business, i am not sure yet.

indigosunrise
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 497
   Posted 6/18/2008 4:00 AM (GMT -7)   

I feel very fortunate to have the job I have.  My boss is very understanding and I have kept him in the loop regarding my medical tests and appointments (maybe TMI, but I figure it is probably safer to be upfront about things instead of quiet).  The restroom is just around the corner from my desk so that is really nice!

I do feel bad because over the past year, I have taken A LOT of time off here and there to go to my follow-up doctor appointments, especially for the eye inflammation.  I do have the sick and vacation time though so that helps cover it. 

I don't believe I have Crohn's really bad or anything like that, so I don't know what the future holds as far as working and stuff goes.  I suppose only time will tell.  I do recall though, when I went on prednisone a couple of months ago for my eyes, I was having HORRIBLE joint pain, to the point where it was painful to drive, walk, do anything!  I would get home from work and just lay in bed till morning.  Needless to say the prednisone helped a lot, and I am back on it again for my eyes, and I wonder what will happen when I end up back off of it again. 

 

 

 

 


Texan with Crohn's
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 362
   Posted 6/18/2008 4:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Good morning!

Though I don't know how, I hold down a very stressful full-time job at a law firm in the IT department. My boss is a complete... humm... mean person. If I miss work, I have an attendance problem; if I come into work feeling more often than not in pain, etc., I get chewed out all day long by him. I have been told I am not allowed to so much as even touch my gut, as it is unprofessional. He pulled me into his office and told me I am not to discuss my health issues with anyone at the firm and that he didn't want to hear anything about it - great manager, huh.

I go in each and every day, though I can barely walk on some days. I at least stay until the rest of the IT department arrives. My review is coming up pretty quick and I just can't wait to see what Captain Di -- well, I won't list my nickname for him here to be kind -- has to say. I know it will not be nice. Any boss that tells a Crohnie to "take some Pepto and suck it up" or "get it taken care of," is a less than adequate manager.

I suck it up for my child. Bills bills and bills. Being that I am a single mother I really have no choice. I need to stay put where I am as my three-year mark is next Friday. After that should my new GI doc recommend we cut me open for a look, I will get 75 percent of my pay while out. Every time I think I do not have the strength I see my daughter's face and it somehow gives me the strength I need to a) get through it and b) keep my mouth shut - see I really want to tell this very young, ex-military manger what I think of his lack of people skills.


I come here each morning before work. This forum also gives me strength. Without it I feel isolated and all alone.

Take care all and have a good day.

pix
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 134
   Posted 6/18/2008 7:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Dear Texan,

Having a "mean" boss is the absolute pits.  No one should be shamed for having an illness, and ours is so public, with the bathroom issues and all.  It is so good that you come here for support, because at least we understand that you can't "Take Pepto and suck it up".  Can you transfer? Could you look for another job?  I have pretty good job hunting skills, if you need help.  As a boss, I have found that people usually don't abuse sick time, and if they do, they can be worked with.  It is unacceptable to keep hassling you over a documented chronic illness.  Grrrrr...

Pix


FitzyK23
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 6/18/2008 7:59 AM (GMT -7)   
and illegal! (see ADA)
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