Things To Consider Before Starting / Switching Jobs with Crohn's Disease

Last updated: April 2020

Hello, I am Shawn. If you don't know by now, I have Crohn's disease. It's a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and other complications throughout my digestive system. It's a pain. Literally and figuratively to say the least.

Financial stress with Crohn's disease

Although I am "sick," there is still a lot I have to do for example: pay rent, pay for health insurance, pay for copays, pay for food. The list goes on, but overall I believe you get the idea. My point being, although I live with a chronic illness, I still have to make a living to support it. I imagine you do too.

Changing jobs is even more stressful with Crohn's

Although stressful, changing jobs is a very normal part of life. Unfortunately, the stressful things in life for a "normal" person are always much more stressful and intimidating when living with a life-long chronic condition, like Crohn's for example.

So what stage are you in? Considering changing career paths, but maybe fearful of what that path may look like for you? Between jobs or even working from home? Whether this will serve as a reminder or highlight some things you may not have considered (yet) at all, I hope it helps.

Things to consider before changing careers with Crohn's

  1. Dates and Medication Frequency: Obviously your start date may be 100% out of your control, but maybe not. An important thing to consider is your medication frequency. Will you have coverage for your next refill? Is your company offering benefits day 1 that you will be eligible for? To combat this one I would highly recommend an early and/or extra refill to have your medication on hand. This may not be an option for every person under every plan, but it's certainly something to consider.
  2.  Emergency Situations: Let's face it... They happen. Especially while living with a chronic, autoimmune disease. It's best to be prepared in advance. Trust me, you can avoid so much by just getting a few things done prior to starting your employment. For me? A few things I did include: making contact information a priority. I realize not all companies do this, but before I started with mine, they sent out documents for us to fill out. One being a contact sheet. I made that one of my top priorities and chose my contacts wisely. Don't just go by who you're closest to or like better. You have to consider availability. Who will actually be there if / when something happens to you? Another thing I did was purchase a medical bracelet. There are so many styles and flavors out there, I am sure you will find something that fits your needs. They have them for both, men and women. There are many different types on sites like Etsy and even Google Shop. I personally purchased mine from a company called Medic Alert. It's simple, but it was also cost-efficient! I'm all about purchasing the things I need without breaking the budget.
  3.  Prioritize Health: I honestly have so many more I could mention, but I felt like this one is important. Remember, if you need time to step away, take a break, sit, stand, whatever: You need to do what's best for you. Don't allow yourself to drop the ball on your health for a job or any other reason.

No matter what stage you are at in your journey, I'd like to tell you congratulations! Hitting the job market is stressful and takes courage. You've already taken a huge step, whether you realize it or not!

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