How can I interview for a job with RA?

My unfortunate diagnosis of RA coincided a couple of months after I started a new job. Ultimately, I had to quit the job as my head and body reeled with this disease. The moment I felt better, just a few months later, I found a new job that ultimately I had to quit following what felt like an interminable flare in my feet that ultimately prevented me from doing the walking portion of my commute. I have an interview for a new part-time job coming up, but now I walk funny, can only wear certain shoes and can’t be on my feet too long. How do I handle this with a prospective employer? Do I need to say something?


Community Answers
  • Richard Faust moderator
    6 months ago

    Hi kingkatekong. How much to say about RA in a job interview is an excellent question. Each person, of course, has to decide on specifics for themselves.There are employment protections and rights under the ADA and this article from one of our contributors looks at some of this: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/ada-know-employee-rights/.

    My wife, Kelly (a contributor here), I, and her family had this conversation years ago when she was looking for a new position. We were discussing how much to say in advance, as her RA is readily visible (she uses a wheelchair). She decided to tell them in advance of an in-person interview, so they could be prepared to accommodate for the interview, but also so that the surprise didn’t dominate the interview. From that point she simply focused on why she was the best person for the job (she works in communications, so RA isn’t really an issue on the job). While not dealing specifically with employment, Kelly wrote this article on what to tell others: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/what-tell/. Wishing you the best. Richard (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

  • kingkatekong author
    6 months ago

    Thank you for the reply. I feel honesty is the best policy too.

  • Indigo2
    6 months ago

    Another option is to consult on obtaining disability though Social Security.

  • Indigo2
    6 months ago

    I think I would be honest & tell them that you are limited in the area of walking. Many employers will make accommodations & it is best to be up front, I think. You need to find a job that fits your physical ability otherwise, you will end up leaving & it is better to find the fit & be able to stay. Hope this helps & best wishes!

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