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Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 5:14 pm
by YinFireHare
I was diagnosed this week with Bipolar disorder.

Right now, I'm on medications and feeling honestly good/stable. The idea of being a lawyer scares me but at the same time, I feel like it would be rewarding for me to represent clients - the good days and the bad ones. Does anyone have advise for me to consider? I'm studying for the December LSAT and I want to get into a top school and do well.

Provided I maintain balance and go to my doctor/therapist appointments through law school and career afterwards, I should be OK right?

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:17 pm
by TheBlueDevil
YinFireHare wrote:I was diagnosed this week with Bipolar disorder.

Right now, I'm on medications and feeling honestly good/stable. The idea of being a lawyer scares me but at the same time, I feel like it would be rewarding for me to represent clients - the good days and the bad ones. Does anyone have advise for me to consider? I'm studying for the December LSAT and I want to get into a top school and do well.

Provided I maintain balance and go to my doctor/therapist appointments through law school and career afterwards, I should be OK right?


Well, on one hand, there are a lot of law students and lawyers with mental health issues, so you certainly won't be alone. On the other hand, law school and legal practice seem to be rather bad for mental health, so going into it with preexisting issues may be... difficult.

In any event, this is a personal decision that you should make with the advice of your doctor.

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:24 pm
by MarkinKansasCity
TheBlueDevil wrote:
YinFireHare wrote:I was diagnosed this week with Bipolar disorder.

Right now, I'm on medications and feeling honestly good/stable. The idea of being a lawyer scares me but at the same time, I feel like it would be rewarding for me to represent clients - the good days and the bad ones. Does anyone have advise for me to consider? I'm studying for the December LSAT and I want to get into a top school and do well.

Provided I maintain balance and go to my doctor/therapist appointments through law school and career afterwards, I should be OK right?


Well, on one hand, there are a lot of law students and lawyers with mental health issues, so you certainly won't be alone. On the other hand, law school and legal practice seem to be rather bad for mental health, so going into it with preexisting issues may be... difficult.

In any event, this is a personal decision that you should make with the advice of your doctor.


The most most fucked up part about that is that 0Ls are more mentally stable than the general population, but by the time they graduate they've turned into insecure basketcases, statistically speaking.

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:39 pm
by YinFireHare
Removing this post.

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:40 pm
by YinFireHare
TheBlueDevil wrote:
YinFireHare wrote:I was diagnosed this week with Bipolar disorder.

Right now, I'm on medications and feeling honestly good/stable. The idea of being a lawyer scares me but at the same time, I feel like it would be rewarding for me to represent clients - the good days and the bad ones. Does anyone have advise for me to consider? I'm studying for the December LSAT and I want to get into a top school and do well.

Provided I maintain balance and go to my doctor/therapist appointments through law school and career afterwards, I should be OK right?


Well, on one hand, there are a lot of law students and lawyers with mental health issues, so you certainly won't be alone. On the other hand, law school and legal practice seem to be rather bad for mental health, so going into it with preexisting issues may be... difficult.

In any event, this is a personal decision that you should make with the advice of your doctor.


Thank you

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:44 pm
by YinFireHare
MarkinKansasCity wrote:
TheBlueDevil wrote:
YinFireHare wrote:I was diagnosed this week with Bipolar disorder.

Right now, I'm on medications and feeling honestly good/stable. The idea of being a lawyer scares me but at the same time, I feel like it would be rewarding for me to represent clients - the good days and the bad ones. Does anyone have advise for me to consider? I'm studying for the December LSAT and I want to get into a top school and do well.

Provided I maintain balance and go to my doctor/therapist appointments through law school and career afterwards, I should be OK right?


Well, on one hand, there are a lot of law students and lawyers with mental health issues, so you certainly won't be alone. On the other hand, law school and legal practice seem to be rather bad for mental health, so going into it with preexisting issues may be... difficult.

In any event, this is a personal decision that you should make with the advice of your doctor.


The most most fucked up part about that is that 0Ls are more mentally stable than the general population, but by the time they graduate they've turned into insecure basketcases, statistically speaking.


Thank you

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 8:42 pm
by derekne
You should be ok though, depending on where you want to practice, a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder could cause some headaches for the C&F portion of the Bar application. I know Texas and a couple of other states ask questions like, "In the last ten years have you been diagnosed or treated for the following conditions: Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Psychosis etc...). If you're applying for admission to the Bar in one of these states you're supposed to disclose and present your case to the Bar examiners that your condition won't adversely your ability to practice law.

IMO they should not be asking these questions and have no idea how they would find out if you lied about your diagnosis, but I would advise disclosing if this situation arises.

Re: Mental health diagnosis

Posted: Thu Nov 02, 2017 12:21 pm
by mcmand
derekne wrote:You should be ok though, depending on where you want to practice, a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder could cause some headaches for the C&F portion of the Bar application. I know Texas and a couple of other states ask questions like, "In the last ten years have you been diagnosed or treated for the following conditions: Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia, Psychosis etc...). If you're applying for admission to the Bar in one of these states you're supposed to disclose and present your case to the Bar examiners that your condition won't adversely your ability to practice law.

IMO they should not be asking these questions and have no idea how they would find out if you lied about your diagnosis, but I would advise disclosing if this situation arises.


Disability advocacy groups have been threatening or actually suing state bars over those questions. Washington's questions already have changed and are much less specific now. Depending on the jurisdiction OP wants to end up in, he may not have to disclose anything.

However, even with no mental health question/vague mental health questions, the focus of those states that changed their questions is on conduct. So if you answer other questions about your behavior (job terminations, forced leaves of absence, criminal matters, etc.) and your answers indicate potential mental health issues, the door opens up again for inquiries and evaluations. It all really depends, OP, on what your story is and what's been going on.

But I don't think you should rule out law school based on the diagnosis alone. I agree with the above posts. Talk to your doc, talk to your therapist (if you have one aside from your doctor), talk to your support network of family/friends/loved ones. They're all the people you'll rely on if you do move forward and they can help you figure out if this is the right call for you.