The Unemployment Office

Well I went to the Unemployment Office today. My first visit was unproductive and intimidating. The first time I thought I was prepared. I’d went online, spent a significant amount of time filling out various forms. The first time I didn’t schedule an appointment because I didn’t think it was possible. Within a few minutes of opening my mouth I was informed, by a very intimidating woman, that I had not filled out the appropriate sections and that I needed to sort that shit out and schedule an appointment (not in those exact words). So I left feeling quite deflated and rather idiotic. I did, however, go home and fill out more boxes. I even managed after much trial and error to schedule an appointment. Today I went to said appointment and was greatly relieved that my caseworker was not the same woman!

My caseworker was actually very nice, she didn’t speak English and so I rambled in my pitiful broken Swedish but we managed. I told her I was in therapy and gave her my therapist’s card. She said there is assistance for persons with disabilities and mental health conditions. For persons with disabilities and mental health conditions they can get extra training, accommodations, and it seems that the caseworkers take a more active role in the job finding process. That is exactly what I need. My disabilities/mental health conditions have made finding and holding jobs very difficult (try being 35 without gainful employment or experience!). My caseworker will contact me again for an appointment with a specialist. I will bring in my ADD diagnosis and hopefully they will contact my therapist so they can see where I am on the mental health side of things. I don’t know yet. In the USA I was declared unfit for work and told that I would need to be on disability for life (apparently my ADD is really really severe and now they have discovered even more serious issues). I didn’t really take that well and never did go on disability although that meant not having an income. Here in Sweden I do not know what to expect. Perhaps my condition will not warrant assistance at all or the procedures for obtaining the assistance may involve Vårdcentral and hours of complicated paperwork and testing), maybe I will receive the assistance, maybe they will decide I am not able to work at this time. I have no idea. I felt positive about the meeting but I am cautiously optimistic and completely paranoid at the same time.


10 responses

  1. Getting assistance will free your mind from having to worry about finances (at least some). In the USA placing someone in life time disability sometimes sends the wrong message and making that person feel useless. I believe that having mental health issues is challenging but not disabling. Stay strong!

    • It really hurt my pride and confidence. They didn’t even believe I would succeed at University but I did and with a good GPA it was a struggle of course but I did earn my degree despite everything and with lots of encouragement from my husband..While a full-time job is not appropriate for me at this time (also I want to write), I would like to give the vocational training a go and see about part-time employment, I want to try before my failure is decided you know?

  2. Agree with other comments. It’s terrible to write someone off like that by telling them they can never work or study. Many people would have believed that and never even tried. Well done to you for proving them wrong.
    I have faith in you, Yves. You’re a strong and determined lady and you will get there. Xx

  3. Thank the Almighty Glob that you got a different caseworker! That first woman… Ugh. I’ve dealt with too many people like that in my time and, like you, it leaves me feeling like an utter, incompetent fool. Good luck, Yves. I’m keeping all my extra digits crossed for you! 😀

    • Thank you Tony! I am hoping this experience will give me more confidence, in Sweden there is a word självstanding which translate self standing (pretty obviously lo) which sounds kind of strange in English but it is basically like self-sufficient and confident and I want to be more of that

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