What Happened When I Told My Boss I Was Struggling With Mental Illness

By Joseph Rauch

When my last boss caught me passed out at my desk due to sleep deprivation, the most prevalent symptom of my depressive-anxiety disorder, I knew it was time to have a difficult but necessary conversation.

It was my first full-time job out of college. I was mortified because I had long feared my depression would cause me to struggle to work normal hours. Because my sleep was constantly disrupted and low-quality, arriving at work by 9 a.m. became a trial. Getting out of bed took an hour because the exhaustion felt like iron bars wrapped around me, bolted into my mattress.