Does anyone have any advise when it comes to navigating getting help and your firm. I had a tough month mentally. But I reached out to my local bar’s LAP. I’m starting the process of seeing a therapist. But my dreads still here. I’m panicking about being short on hours, falling behind on my cases and explaining to my boss I know I’m behind at work but I am working on it. Any advise will be greatly appreciated.

likehelpful
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Thanks for following up. A senior member of the firm who’s not in my practice group noticed I was off and reached out and has been a tremendous resource. Had my first session yesterday and it went well.

likeuplifting

So happy for you. Thank goodness people are getting a clue.

First off, major respect for leaning into both LAP & a therapist! Both are fantastic resources that will be super-helpful, regardless of however your firm navigates it.

And, both (especially a LAP staff or volunteer/mentor) can help you with some ways to navigate dealing with your firm. They help people with those kind of questions all the time, and may even know a thing or two about your specific firm.

Beyond that, you may want to tell someone in HR (if your firm has an HR department or rep, of course) before telling an actual partner or supervisor.  They may be able to speak specifically to what kind of EAP or other resources the firm has. And by doing so you can document the need in case you end up needing time to seek appropriate medical care, which should be protected by the FMLA (again depending on employer size).

Lastly, know that you and your mental well-being are more important than anybody else’s expectations, any clients, or any way of doing business; don’t feel bad for seeking help - in the long run it will be the best thing for your career and productivity – and for the law firm that’s lucky enough to have you!

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Please let us know how things are going, lots of us out here on a similar journey feeling alone.

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