The decision to enroll in a rehab program is one that can tremendously enhance your life. Instead of spending your time engaged in addictive behaviors, you can focus that energy on pursuing your goals. Some of those goals may connect to your current or intended career. The thought of careers can make you wonder what to do about your current job and rehab. In other words, you may have some concerns about letting your employer know what is going on.
Addressing Your Fears
The thought of letting your employer know that you need time off to go into a rehab program is scary. You may worry that the employer will deny your request, or you might be afraid that you’ll lose your job as a result. Consider how your behavior at work has been while you’ve struggled with the addiction. In other words, your employer may already suspect that treatment has been coming. Your job may entirely support this endeavor and want to see you get the necessary help. Having employers who are committed to the job and dedicated to healthy living is a benefit for the company too.
Before you talk to your employer, you should find out what the company policies are. Access to such policies should not be hidden from the employers, and you should be able to read them without feel of judgment. While you’re conducting research, you may discover that you’re entitled to a certain amount of paid or unpaid leave. You may even learn that your employer will help to cover the costs of rehab. Make sure to look into any stipulations. For example, the benefits might be available only if you have been working at the job for a certain period of time.
You might think about asking someone at work who has gone through this process for advice. Keep in mind that some individuals are extremely competitive in the workplace and will take any opportunity possible to put themselves ahead of another employee. Advice from someone who’s been in your position is helpful, but only if that advice is from the right person. When you want advice, consider consulting with an attorney who specializes in these matters. Another idea is to consult with a staff member from the treatment facility. They can provide suggestions and provide you with resources to know the type of protection that you have.
Telling Your Employer About Your Addiction
When it comes time to tell your job that you’re going to leave, you may learn that you have a few options. For example, during the research process, you could discover that you’re entitled to a period of leave to take care of personal medical issues. It’s possible that you aren’t required to tell your employer what those issues are. As you’re counting up the number of vacation days that you have left for the year, you could also decide to use these days to enroll in a treatment program. A treatment program for a serious addiction could take a lengthy amount of time, so make sure the schedules align if you choose this plan.
If you decide to be fully open with your employer, choose the right time to talk. While you don’t want to keep protracting the conversation, try to find some downtime to express your thoughts. Keep in mind that your employer may not need to have a protracted conversation with you about this topic. You may very well not be the first person at your job in this situation, and your employer might have handled similar conversations many times in the past. If you have questions that you want to ask, prepare a list of them before the conversation. You could even speak with a lawyer to find out if you should procure any information in writing and how to do so. For example, you may want to know that you’ll have a job when you come back. In turn, the employer may be able to promise a job only if you return within a specified period of time.
Preparing for Outcomes
One of the scariest parts of this conversation is likely not knowing exactly what your employer is going to say. This fear is exactly why it is so important to know what laws protect you, which is a major reason to consult with a lawyer. You could also find out if it is appropriate to have a lawyer or union representative present when you have this conversation with your job. If the law protects you, you can then have greater confidence that this conversation will go in your favor.
On the other hand, you may find that you have little protection. For example, you may have been at your job for only a short period of time, precluding you from qualifying for the necessary coverage. In that event, you may be told that a job will not be waiting for you after treatment. You may also lose your job. While you don’t want to generate unnecessary anxiety about your conversation with the boss, you also should know that seemingly negative outcomes could arise. In the event that they do, you will have to make an important decision. Surrendering a job is difficult, especially when you need the money. However, don’t look at only the short term; consider how this choice affects the rest of your life.
When you’re willing to seek help for an addiction, you may discover that relatives and friends are there to support you. You may also qualify for certain forms of government assistance. Learning to ask for help is scary, but it’s important. Keeping the job may help you for now, but allowing your addiction to thrive and grow will likely hurt you in the long term.
Taking time off to go to rehab is a step that many people have taken, but that doesn’t make the process less intimidating. You don’t have to go through this experience without guidance. For help, call us at 877-871-3356 today.