Q. I'm 65 and still work. The problem is that recently I began forgetting things and saw some specialists, and they say I have the beginning of Dementia. I think that's a code word for Alzheimer's disease. Whatever it is, I'm still pretty much ok and don't want to quit my job and sit around the house getting depressed. But do I tell Human Resources or my boss? Am I better off pretending I'm ok until the boss, or my family figures out its time for me to quit?
Ans. No one can answer that except you and your family, because each case is different. You may do very well for a long while and, with new drugs, postpone the most serious symptoms of whatever it is you really have. You can certainly wait, watch the way the condition progresses, and take your cues from that. As long as you're not making mistakes, or endangering anyone (including yourself), you don't have to discuss it at work. As soon as you notice problems, take your immediate supervisor or the HR manager into your confidence so you have someone in the know at the office that can monitor you and notify your family when there's a problem. Also, if your boss knows about your condition he can be more understanding of small errors when they become noticeable. Also, the company may already know something's up if they watch your insurance claims.