Is lying ever recommended?

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New Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/28/2009 3:38 AM (GMT -7)   


I'm an overseas English teacher.  I was diagnosed BI-P several years back in Thailand and have since then received treatment in Thailand, USA and Korea respectively.  I am currently on a fairly small dose of daily Lithium and haven't encountered any major problems for a few years.

I've recently been accepted for a fantastic position in a new country (through an American employer) 

(I have worked in the new location before, have a friend already there and know what to expect)

The problem is, on the visa form it asks for any mental disorders.  I am fairly certain that if I ticked "yes" and even explained all, I'd be dismissed. 

In addition I must take an intensive medical exam, as well as a tox screen at which point the physician is sure to ask if I take any medications or have any persistent medical problems.  Again, if I confessed I am biPolar and take lithium daily, I imagine I could be dismissed, or would that fall under doctor/patient confidentiality(?)....or in the case of examining a patient for a job, is that confidentiality waved?

I'm confused.  I feel like my best chance is to lie.  "No medical ailments, no medicines," and then sit back and pray that Lithium is not discovered in my blood, urine or stool by happen-stance.

The logical part of me assumes that to find the lithium, the doctor/lab/techs would have to be looking for the lithium.

 I really want and financially need this position and feel fully competent, experienced and qualified to do well there, but am afraid my diagnosis and lithium content in my blood will destroy my chances.

Thanks for any advice, insight or ideas.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 6/28/2009 2:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi kochang,

Welcome to HealingWell and to the bipolar board. I have been thinking about your post all day, thinking about how to reply. I really wasn't sure what to say. My gut instinct tells me the best thing to do would be to be honest. I think they will find the lithium in a blood screen and then you will definitely be disqualified for lying. Whereas, if you are honest, you at least have the chance that they cannot discriminate against you for a relatively minor health condition.

I wish you lots of luck,
Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

New Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 6/30/2009 3:46 AM (GMT -7)   

Having a psychological illness should never be a reason for discrimination but unfortunately, not everyone feels that. Even in the United States where people are thought to be more aware of this condition, people who have psychological illnesses still experience a social stigma when people learn about their condition.

But on your part, it would be more advisable to tell the truth rather than hide it. Because if you do this and the tox exam shows that you are using specific medicine to combat bipolar disorder, the consul may find out about your lies and reject your Visa application.

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