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To Tell or Not to Tell
Diana Coutu has struggled with depression all her life, but you’d never know it. In high school, she was captain of the cheerleading team and an excellent student. In fact, Coutu was such a high achiever that she was accepted to Yale where she was a Rhodes scholar and graduated with a degree in literature. She moved on to become a successful reporter for the Wall Street Journal Europe. Yet, like so many others who “seem to have it all,” Coutu felt as if she were drowning.
Her clinical depression had gotten to the point where, sometimes, she couldn’t get out of bed and go to work. It didn’t take long for her boss to see what was going on. He pulled her aside and told her to get the help she needed, and that she had his support.
Coutu went and received depression treatment and went on to a new job where she revealed her depression to her boss and co-workers up front. No one responded negatively. So Coutu, now an editor for the Harvard Business Review, decided to take it one step further and blog about her experience in dealing with depression.
Coutu sometimes wonders if her open policy on her health will come back to haunt her someday, but for now, the benefits far outweigh any future risks.
Have you revealed your depression to co-workers or bosses? What have their reactions been? Or, is it best to keep your private life outside of work private? [BusinessWeek]