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Question for any Psychiatrists/Psychologists about ADA Accommodations. Anyone with accommodations please comment as well.

I have Depression and Anxiety. 14 years ago the VA diagnosed me with both and I've been getting my care from the VA Hospital since. My former VA psychiatrist filled out an ADA form for me to give to my school 5 years ago because she believed my illness is substantially limits my ability to function. For example I have problems leaving the house often and I am always sad and depressed or having anxiety attacks. Sadly I have a problem with med compliance as well and continuing with psych therapy. Pretty much I go to the VA when I'm on the verge of dying or losing everything because I can't leave my house.

So on to the point I recently (1 month ago) called the VA crisis line because I was so so low and hopeless and thinking about death/dying to where I was scared for myself. They first asked if I was going to hurt myself right then or had plan to which I said no so they said my Dr. would see me in the morning as a walk in. Because I didn't want to leave the house I didn't go but my VA Primary Care Dr. called me and I told her what was up and she prescribed me some stuff and made an appt. for me to see Behavioral Health in the VA. I went to Behavioral Health today and I found out my old psychiatrist had retired in Dec/2012. So I saw a new psychiatrist and I discussed my issues and he upped my dosage of my meds. I than told him if he would give me a note for my school because I had missed to come see him and he said no what for? I told him the former psychiatrist had signed off on my ADA form for school saying I might be absent as well as a form for me to have a cat as an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) . He then said yes their is medical support for such things but not everyone agrees. I then said so are you saying you don't agree with me getting ADA accomadations? He said "this is my first time seeing you I don't know if there warranted". I said but my school gives me these accomadations based on the other psychiatrist to which he said " I can't even see what type of accommodations they would give you" I said well if I'm absent occasionally they will understand why or they give me longer to take tests in quiet room. I still have to score satisfactorily but due to my accommodations letter they give me these accommodations.

The point of all this is now because he would not give me a letter saying that I was absent due to seeing him I am going to get in big trouble at school and might be flunked. I have an 89 average in the class and this is my second absence. In my syllabus it says you can be failed at two absences. Last semester they failed someone with two absences. In the ADA form my first psychiatrist gave me she said I might be absent due to medical condition or appointments so the school knows this and agreed to the accomadation but my professors arent necessarily going to accept my verbal on this. And I don't think he/the new Dr will ever back me up on anything ADA needless to say I told him we didn't have a rapport and I never want to see him again.

So what I want to know is what do I do when I can't provide proof of my visit and what do I do if he will never back me up on this issue with my school if I have problems in the future or if they try to fail me based on my now two absences. He didn't even read my chart or check my history other than glancing at it. He made me think he didn't think I had anything wrong with me which I WISH were the case. And now there is no one to advocate for me at the school besides the disability coordinator who has a copy of my accommodations letter that this new guy doesn't approve of because he only met me once. What does this all mean for me? Obviously I will try to get a different psychiatrist at the minimum.

I feel embarrassed that I fit the stereotype of the deranged mentally ill DL'er who lives in moms basement. Even though I live in my own apt which sadly my parents pay half the bill of cuz I can't care for myself to well and I'm in my 30's. Thanks for anyone really trying to help.

by Anonymousreply 902/28/2013

VOTN, is that you?

by Anonymousreply 102/28/2013

No, but oddly enough he and I are in similar school programs R1 this is why my absence i a big deal.

by Anonymousreply 202/28/2013

OP, I feel your pain. If the Dr won't write an actual excuse, he at least must give you a signed document saying you were seeing medical professional on X date and X time. If he won't do it, the office manager should.

Good luck. I know how crippling chronic depression and anxiety are. Everybody's somewhat understanding at first, then they grow weary and unwilling to deal with you as time passes. Glad your folks are helping with expenses.

by Anonymousreply 302/28/2013

I feel for you. I have PTSD and have severe depression. I also find it very hard to leave my house.

by Anonymousreply 402/28/2013

OP, I'm very sorry that you're going through this. People who have never dealt with panic don't understand it -- I certainly didn't -- and cannot empathize.

Best bet is to work two fronts: talk to the disability coordinator and see if there's anything they can do while you try to find a decent doctor to help you.

And work the prof. I wouldn't give him the whole song and dance but consider talking with him after class or sending an email in which you apologize for missing the class for a doctor's appt that you couldn't reschedule and state how much you're getting out of his class and that you hope your absence won't reflect poorly.

(That is, if you're sure he's taking attendance.)

Sure, some profs will brush that off. But others will note your diligence and sense of responsibility. Then make sure to put maximum effort into all remaining tests/assignments.

by Anonymousreply 502/28/2013

Ummmm....OP...Can we keep the paragraphs down to 30 words or less? Otherwise it starts sounding like we're reading from a law journal.

by Anonymousreply 602/28/2013

Thanks everyone, for your kind replies. For those of you suffering with similar problems recently I realized that I need to ALWAYS comply with my med regimen if I want to be successful and hold a job and not feel so miserable. I know the side effects can suck, weight gain, sexual dysfunction etc. but feeling how I do is worse. I just always thought I could make it work without the meds but I'm nearly 40 and a mess so I have to change. Just know there are some people out there who really do care or understand and want to help. Try to find these people and surround yourselves with them , and try to minimize drama because its bad for mental health. Good luck and once again thank you.

by Anonymousreply 702/28/2013

OP, thank you for your service. Truly.

I'll keep you in my thoughts in prayers. You sound like an awfully good person.

Believe in yourself. I do.

by Anonymousreply 802/28/2013


by Anonymousreply 902/28/2013
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