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aspiesw

Should I disclose my Aspergers to an employer

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aspiesw

I'm not planning to tell my employers about my condition. I was just wondering what people thought about this question. Should you disclose your Aspergers to an employer. In my case, I probably should, having Aspergers weakens my ability to do my job in certain aspects, such as communication, social skills and often competency, I have a feeling they're already aware of my disability (or at least know I'm different), but I haven't said anything, and neither have they.

 

Also, when applying for jobs, I tend to fiddle with the 'Do you consider yourself to have a disability' check box, with some applications, I tick it and others, I don't, because I believe I have a higher chance of getting the job if I say I don't. When I say applying for jobs, these are only retail jobs, and I've been in retail for 3 years, so I can handle whatever they may throw at me (I'd like to think I could).

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Nesf

It depends on what your boss is like, how reasonable and understanding he is, and how good your relationship with him is. But disclosing is always a risk, so I wouldn't do so unless your relationship with him was very good and you are sure he will understand and support you.

 

Interesting the wording on the disability box, asking you your opinion on whether you think you have a disability or not. It's good, because it gives you the option of disclosing or not.

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the strangest man

If you do not disclose you will find the Disability Discrimination Act may not cover you, or that you would have less protection against any discrimination you might suffer. That said you have to be with same employer to have legal protection against unfair dismissal etc.

The best thing though is to do the job as well as you can, know your deficits and work with your strengths.

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King_oni

While I don't know the laws and all in other countries in regards to disability and employment, I do think that the moment you don't mention it and something happens that can be attributed to your disability, you'll be in some kind of trouble.

 

Bad performance due to AS might be one of those things. Also, you might run into situations where you're doing a bad job, try to work harder and eventually still fail because some things just don't work for you the way they're expected of you. It can lead to bad reviews and they might let you go. And perhaps that's where a vicious cycle with social services starts (which pretty much is my personal situation in the past X years)... getting a bad review that can be attributed to your AS will follow you for quite a while I think.

 

Though you managed to get through university and held a job in retail, so it might not all be that severe in your case (and I'm surely not discrediting any issues you have)

 

Interesting the wording on the disability box, asking you your opinion on whether you think you have a disability or not. It's good, because it gives you the option of disclosing or not.

 

So that comes down to perspective then? What if I don't consider myself disabled but I consider society dysfunctional? 

 

I'm not sure how such a view would be received by an employer, though he can't tell me I'm wrong either... by whose judgment and standards are we going? And what exactly is a disability? And when is it a disability?

 

Reminds of this one time social services told me about a job offer and I should check it out. It was some kind of industrial laundry firm (or whatever it's called). Turns out that they were looking for a woman, since they didn't think a man would fit in, in a pretty much exclusive female employee culture in that company. By that standard, I could even check the box and state that I'm disabled because of my gender.

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Kaygee

I just disclosed mine to my HR department last Thursday. It was a tough decision that I struggled with for a long time, but I felt that I was going to get fired if I didn't.

 

Did it improve anything? Not really. Most NTs will not take time out of their day to look up and educate themselves on Aspergers. The HR rep was sincere, but that's her job.

 

But it is what it is. Now if something happens, I don't have to worry about getting fired and then them saying "well, you never told us about your disability", if I brought it up after I was let go.

Edited by Kaygee

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Chlillis

I actually have this on my CV, it saves me from telling them about it in an interview or writing it on an application form that way, and if I'm lucky enough to get a position then I think they would notice something different about me anyway if I didn't mention it and I would struggle to talk about it with them in person if I feel it is affecting the way I cope with things in the workplace.

 

Even if I didn't have it on my CV I would probably do it if I felt 1) comfortable to talk about it with my employers and 2) that it is affecting my work and just needs to be mentioned to someone. But I think they'll find out about it eventually anyway.

 

As for the box, I don't see the need to mention my AS as a disability, I may have done it once or twice, but I would worry about it hindering my chances of success in the application.

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Charles

I haven't told my employer.  I can see why you would.  I mean, we are pretty quirky.  If they only heard "Aspergers" they could go home and google it.  Maybe they would then know better how to work with our strengths and weaknesses.  Heck, maybe it would even give them a little compassion and curiosity about those who are different.

 

On the other hand....my pride keeps me from telling them.  Not that I am ashamed of being ASD.  Rather, I am proud of the fact that i can do my job well, and I don't need any special considerations from anyone.  I am starting a new job in a month.  I didn't tell them at the interview, but when they asked about strengths and weaknesses I have I basically defined Aspergers for them, not holding anything back.  But, no, I didn't actually tell them.

 

 

Even if I didn't have it on my CV I would probably do it if I felt 1) comfortable to talk about it with my employers and 2) that it is affecting my work and just needs to be mentioned to someone. But I think they'll find out about it eventually anyway.

 

I agree with what you said here - if they actually work with us day in and day out, they are going to figure out our strengths and weaknesses, even if they don't know the 'label.'  I think that most people I work with, if I told them, they wouldn't be that surprised.  

 

 

 

I don't want any official protection or anything, but sometimes I have wondered if I could tell some people sort of "unofficially" if that makes any sense.

 

So, I can see the reasons to tell them, and perfectly good reasons not to tell them also.

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jcarenza10

I would start by saying that I have been working for the past six years and I have been fired from all but two jobs in that time. However, I will say that when I did disclose that I had Asperger's, my employment period often doubled in length. Did disclosure give me any hope of a non-terminated future? Absolutely not. Despite all of the patience in the world, I was screwed from the start. But at least I was able to temporarily avoid the inevitable by sharing my diagnosis.

 

So is it worth it to disclose your diagnosis? I say yes. Take every advantage you can get. 

 

 

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Nesf

On the other hand....my pride keeps me from telling them.  Not that I am ashamed of being ASD.  Rather, I am proud of the fact that i can do my job well, and I don't need any special considerations from anyone.  I am starting a new job in a month.  I didn't tell them at the interview, but when they asked about strengths and weaknesses I have I basically defined Aspergers for them, not holding anything back.  But, no, I didn't actually tell them.

 

This is the approach I took too when I once went to an interview and they asked me about my strengths and weaknesses.

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