Epilepsy Foundation

People often put all epileptics into one single category. That category includes having a high frequency of seizures, not being able to hold a full time job, not being able to drive, having to work in a safe environment, and the list goes on. The bottom line of that ideology shares many of the same traits of other discriminating ideologies such as sex discrimination. Epilepsy discrimination and sex discrimination both put all people, with one trait in common, into a category which underestimates everyone in the group. It doesn’t give everyone a fair shake.

During the past century the world has increasingly opened its doors to women and, because of awareness brought to the issue of sex discrimination, more women are accepted for more opportunities than ever before. There are similar scenarios for men also. The window of opportunity hasn’t opened up to the same extent for epileptics though. Epileptics are still commonly denied employment opportunities, given the shaft for intellectual respect, and the list goes on. It’s about time for the world to realize epileptics are people too.

Do you believe that many people discriminate against epileptics? If so, why do you believe that is? Have you seen or felt that discrimination before? Can you think of any ways to end the discrimination?

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It's true that when people notice you have epilepsy they are more than reluctant to hire you. Thankfully I have never had that problem. My last employer was real ignorant when it came to epilepsy. He didn't even know what it was. One day when I called into work saying I couldn't make it because I had started having seizures he told me I had to go in and work a few hours. You know you can NOT work when you're having seizures. But it's ignorant people like him that don't know a damn thing about epilepsy that hurts us. We need to spread the word, 'educate' the public. But, yes, when people learn you have epilepsy they're afraid to give you a fighting chance. They don't know what it is, how it effects your body and mind. So most of them probably think we're not smart enough to hold a regualar job. I hate it!! They should learn about something --about us-- before passing judgement.
Wow, that's a powerful post Stacy. I think that education is the key for epileptics who want to be treated better. How do you think epileptics can spread the word?
I really dislike it when people automatically put me in a category with people who have very severe forms of epilepsy before they even know anything about my condition. What gets me also is that even after I explain that my condition is not severe, I still stay in that disabled-and-can't-be-left-alone category in their minds.
Don't get me wrong I feel for those who cannot be left alone and pray for their well-being every night, as I have been in that boat myself, but now I am able to work and be independent. The one bad thing of the situation I described is that some people don't open their minds to understand the various forms of epilepsy and their traits. If only we could easily, and quickly educate the masses about the condition... then there might be some real changes.


stacy prentice said:
It's true that when people notice you have epilepsy they are more than reluctant to hire you. Thankfully I have never had that problem. My last employer was real ignorant when it came to epilepsy. He didn't even know what it was. One day when I called into work saying I couldn't make it because I had started having seizures he told me I had to go in and work a few hours. You know you can NOT work when you're having seizures. But it's ignorant people like him that don't know a damn thing about epilepsy that hurts us. We need to spread the word, 'educate' the public. But, yes, when people learn you have epilepsy they're afraid to give you a fighting chance. They don't know what it is, how it effects your body and mind. So most of them probably think we're not smart enough to hold a regualar job. I hate it!! They should learn about something --about us-- before passing judgement.
I've been discriminated and harrased at my job I can't even count. A lot of people are afraid of me when I have seizures.
I've had to give my employer drs. notes all the time. They just tried to write me up for speech problems after surgery.
I have to talk slow and pause sometimes when I'm talking. They said I was talking too much.

I think most people in work places are ignorant about epilepsy and fearful of somesone having seizures at work.
I've had to work no matter how bad my seizures were because I would be homeless on ssi. I fight for my rights all the time.

Jonathan Woods said:
Wow, that's a powerful post Stacy. I think that education is the key for epileptics who want to be treated better. How do you think epileptics can spread the word?
I really dislike it when people automatically put me in a category with people who have very severe forms of epilepsy before they even know anything about my condition. What gets me also is that even after I explain that my condition is not severe, I still stay in that disabled-and-can't-be-left-alone category in their minds.
Don't get me wrong I feel for those who cannot be left alone and pray for their well-being every night, as I have been in that boat myself, but now I am able to work and be independent. The one bad thing of the situation I described is that some people don't open their minds to understand the various forms of epilepsy and their traits. If only we could easily, and quickly educate the masses about the condition... then there might be some real changes.


stacy prentice said:
It's true that when people notice you have epilepsy they are more than reluctant to hire you. Thankfully I have never had that problem. My last employer was real ignorant when it came to epilepsy. He didn't even know what it was. One day when I called into work saying I couldn't make it because I had started having seizures he told me I had to go in and work a few hours. You know you can NOT work when you're having seizures. But it's ignorant people like him that don't know a damn thing about epilepsy that hurts us. We need to spread the word, 'educate' the public. But, yes, when people learn you have epilepsy they're afraid to give you a fighting chance. They don't know what it is, how it effects your body and mind. So most of them probably think we're not smart enough to hold a regualar job. I hate it!! They should learn about something --about us-- before passing judgement.
Yes, I believe that there is discrimination against epilepsy. I also believe that as you said in your statement, that there is all kinds of discrimination, which is very unfortunate! People can be down right mean! I have learned though, most discrimination is caused by fear of the unknown! When people have no idea about the issue at hand the don't know how to deal with it, they get scared and instead of learning or figuring out how to deal with it, it's easier to turn away and judge the issue, go with what the crowd says. Yes, I have felt the effects of discrimination. I have also learned that you need to look past them and keep moving towards your goal, roadblock? Figure a way to learn from it and keep moving! Discouraged? Keep care of yourself, make time to lift up your spirit and regain a new perspective!
Blessings, Kari
I'm sure this will sound pretty intense but have you ever wanted to shake someone and say, "Get a grip"!! I'm fine! I've felt like it before. I was fired because I had broken my collar bone the night before going into work. The supervisor told his workers that he "fired" me because he was going to save the insurance company money. He thought I would fall and hurt myself at work and sue the company. Man how little he knew. God bless him. Really its peopple like that, that make the word "seizure", "epilepsy" a bad word to others. It puts the fear in others.

The question that you presented which was, end the discrimination, but we really need to FIND a POPULAR spokes person to help us.
Part two of my post.

What if the people at Epilepsy Foundation and everyone on here were to write to Oprah and tell her our stories. How its difficult to have epilepsy and how other people look at us when we tell them we have epilepsy. Ask Oprah what "SHE" thinks would be a gread way to spread the word. If we aske Oprah how she would do this then maybe she will have soemone on her show to talk to people about epilepsy and how we need to educate the "WORLD" about it. To educate people about the "DIFFERENT" types of seizures that there are. To not group everyone into "just" grand mal seizures.

So let me know what you think about this.

Susan
susangrobb@hotmail.com
That's a very good, intriguing idea Susan!

Susan G Robb said:
Part two of my post.

What if the people at Epilepsy Foundation and everyone on here were to write to Oprah and tell her our stories. How its difficult to have epilepsy and how other people look at us when we tell them we have epilepsy. Ask Oprah what "SHE" thinks would be a gread way to spread the word. If we aske Oprah how she would do this then maybe she will have soemone on her show to talk to people about epilepsy and how we need to educate the "WORLD" about it. To educate people about the "DIFFERENT" types of seizures that there are. To not group everyone into "just" grand mal seizures.

So let me know what you think about this.

Susan
susangrobb@hotmail.com
Usually when you say epilepsy they think you are going to fall to the floor and start to shake. My last boss was one of those people and, believe it or not, she was in the medical field. I had to get numerous letters from my neurologist to explain my situation. After being let go, I still don't think she understands that there is more to the brain. She is someone who needs a class, especially one for bosses.
Roxanne

That's a  great idea Susan, people need to hear more about it, talk more about it!!!



Roxanne said:

Usually when you say epilepsy they think you are going to fall to the floor and start to shake. My last boss was one of those people and, believe it or not, she was in the medical field. I had to get numerous letters from my neurologist to explain my situation. After being let go, I still don't think she understands that there is more to the brain. She is someone who needs a class, especially one for bosses.
Roxanne

hello my name is jeremy i have had seziures since i was 15 , i am 31 now , i have petit mal on a regular basis and a occasional grand mal , i missed alot of school growing up because of seziures , i have missed alot of work over the years , i have been with my recent employer for over 4 years i work in a hospital lab, i do not drive because of the frequency of my seziures , a couple of years ago i was under a lot of stress at work because of the people i worked with , i was calling in so often , people just didnt even belive that i even had epilepsy i have had to get my employer 20 medical certificcation forms stateing that i have epilepsy , this is seperate from the FMLA paper work , anyways the paper work i had to fill out for each time i called in was ridiculous , after a while my supervisor got comfortable speaking his mind about my condition , i had to file a lawsuit agaist my supervisor and his boss , and the human resources people , that didnt do anything about , around this same time between the lawsuit and my strained relationship's with all my co workers , i ended up haveing a trio of grand mal seziures one night the first grand mal i had , i called 911 they came to my house and figured i was drunk because i wasnt makeing any sense , so i called my friend and we went to the e.r. where i eneded up have two more grand mal seziures i fractured 7 disc in my spine , during one of the seziures i aspirated on my dinner and ended up with phenomia , i was outta work for weeks at a time , i have a good job as far as money and benifits go , even though the people i work with just suck , despite all the medical certification and FMLA forms , and the lawsuit , the lawsuit did little but it did proctect them from fireing during the process, the lawsuit lasted 6 months i filed thru the eeoc my repersentaion was free, but my employer aparently had someone on retainer that had worked for the eeoc for 25 years , the lawsuit evevtually went away nothing was ever resolved me and my employer have never spoke about the matter since , the supervisor that discrimiated agaist me is still my supervisor , i dont trust him so any problems at work i have , i take them to another supervisor , once you sue all your bosses your preety much like the red headed step child , now adays i go to work just to work , i cant have normal conversations with employees , because my supervisor aparently used them to gather information on my activities outside work so i am not on face book , or my space anymore anyways , between the lawsuit , and the lack of understanding this employer has on epilepsy is somthing else , wal-mart was more accomidateing to my condtion , but i work for a catholic orginzation they prolly think i am a demon or somin

 

anyways since the discrimination was never resolved , i dont trust my co workers and my supervisor at all , i had to go get a prescription for a anti deperessent just so i can deal with work 

Hello, Although I recently join this community, I agree fully on your profile posting talking about their difficulties in his professional life, the necessary attention to their children and health care. But recognize that the problem is all of us with epilepsy.

Here in Brazil, unfortunately still lacks the recognition of the Government to help epileptic population and investments in the area of health.

I live in Rio de Janeiro, the Wonderful City. but we have an advanced center for treatment, learn a lot from the members of this community and Anita Kauffman Foundation, where I was elected Ambassador of Purple Day I will strive to raise awareness against the stigma of epilepsy.
After these actions our government will try to raise awareness.

Friend, 2012 will be a year of victories and if we unite all the easier for this community.

A Happy New Year!

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