Take a sick day for mental health?
Madalyn Parker, a 26 year-old web developer for Olark, in Ann Arbor, MI took a sick day for mental health and news of her day off went viral.
Madalyn wrote “I’am taking today and tomorrow to focus on my mental health.” She reported some anxiety and depression that has not consistently responded to medication. The CEO of Olark responded with support which touched Parker.
Tens of thousands of people responded to Parkers post bring attention to the importance of seeing mental health problems as equally important as physical health problems. It is widely accepted that mental health issues, if left unchecked, leave us at greater risk for a number of physical health issues. If we treat both equally we will be in the best position to be as effective as possible in our lives.
Clare Miller, director of the partnership for workplace mental health at the American Psychiatric Association Foundation, said “We know from literature that there is a huge amount of calling in sick because of mental health issues” many of which are due to depression. Many times employees take sick days with complaints like “I don’t feel well.”
Many employers do not respond as Olark did. A 2016 Work and Well-being survey of 1,501 workers by the American Psychological Association suggested that less than one-half felt their employer supported employee well-being. One third felt on the job.
Charles R. Davenport, Psy.D., LLC. provides counseling services and therapy for individuals in Sarasota, FL and Venice, FL. If you struggle with depression, career stress, or anxiety call 941-321-1971 to talk to Licensed Psychologist Dr. Charles R. Davenport.