I've struggled with symptoms and flares for 2.5 years with "reactive arthritis" until the diagnosis came in with Lupus. My job kept me on the road for long stretches out on Sunday, back on Thursday. My assignments are usually very stressful, and I have to balance this with leading a team of 25-50 consultants in our practice. I work 50-80 hour work weeks. Last summer it became too much (stress plays a big factor in SLE) and my rheumatologist and I decided that a short-term disability was in order. This helped, but I continued to struggle thru a flare, and talked to my boss about stepping down, and taking a lower-level more administrative job that wouldn't require travel. He has worked with me to keep me in my job and restructure my duties to reduce the travel. Nevertheless, I know that a day may come when I can't do it. For this reason, we need to prepare for the future. I have purchased long-term disability coverage from my firm (did this from the beginning, before I was sick). My company has also offered long-term care insurance with open enrollment periods. Luckily I took advantage of this when it was last offered, and it coincided with the onset of my first symptoms. So I feel I have options, and this in itself relieves some of the stress. I'm open in discussing the disease with trusted members of my firm, so they will understand if I have to excuse myself at times from working too late, or if they see me with a new wig because of hair loss from methotrexate. I have found everyone to be very understanding and supportive.View Thread
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