A Memoir of Overcoming Essential Tremor

7.Coming out as ET

How extent should we inform people around you of our malady?
Talking to someone close to you might make you feel better.
However, most of people around me were often turned off after they actually saw my seizure even I explained it before.

Should we explain ET to employers when joining a company?
In my experience, it will never work as a positive factor but just put you in shackles.

It was during the summer of my junior year of university that I first developed ET.
Honestly speaking, I felt the situation was hopeless then.

At the first company which I joined, I disguised the truth and managed to work.
One day, the effect of medicines wore off due to utter exhaustion from almost daily overtime work.
Tremor turned to seizure and I was taken to the hospital with an ambulance.
At last, I was dismissed from my service.
At the next office, although I submerged ET and worked, fatigue and stress caused tremor and resulted in seizure.
I managed to cover up the symptoms with medicines for a while.
Side effects made it impossible to take them. I had no choice but leave office.
I seriously worried about finding a new job after the withdrawal of drugs.

My seizures tended to start not only by stress and poor sleep but also by fatigue of my arms and fingers.

I worked for dispensing pharmacy where I had to mix triturate or ointment.
These movements were heavy burden for my arms.

Any dispensing pharmacy requires hand works.
Many pharmacies which don’t demand mixing still require other hand works such as picking up tablets and capsules for making a packet.

I knew this would definitely cause seizures.

At some hiring interviews, I confessed everything and asked if I had any chance and was turned down.
Employers’ eyes then looked so segregating that I still feel disgusted when I remember it now.
At the same time, I wondered seriously if I had ever had taken a wry look at disabled people or not.
Those who suffers from diseases or congenital failure would have hard time by refusal like me.
I tried to find other industries which don’t require hand works very much.
Then I realized learning new things would create another stress.
I thought it would be better if I could avoid seizures by controlling my mind with my existing skill.
I found similar job after all.

"You should take your secret to your grave. Just pretend you don’t know you have it.
All you need to do is to keep you from any more seizures. "
That was the advice from my brother and I never confessed my disease any more.

It might be still vivid in your memory that patients with epilepsy have caused a ghastly accidents recently.
I understand hiding disease to work will never get praise.
But, personally speaking, human liberty should be secured unless it becomes a nuisance to others.
It would be better to contemplate how extent you will give troubles at worst when you don’t tell your disease.
I personally feel that if you think you can take responsibility for the result, you don’t have to tell everything.

At the third workplace, I was going to quit the job if I developed ET again and caused a trouble.
I believe my decision was right since fortunately it never happened there and I’ve got cured.