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  • teekybird


    I'm just in the process of being diagnosed with MS.  I'm 38 and I'm a teacher.  I'd kind of like to see if it is possile to form a network of fellow teachers who have MS.  Please respond to this or contact me privately if you are a teacher.  (currently teaching with MS, or have stopped teaching due to MS)



  • kellykane

    I am currently a secondary teacher in Scotland albeit on supply but this change was because I knew I could no longer do the job full time. At the moment I am looking at early retirement on the grounds of ill health.  I love my job and am reluctant to cut all ties but I'm not allowed to work if i accept this.  With my experience I know I could still work in some area of education but this will not be allowed.  I am very, very angry at the situation I am in and the lack of understanding by my peers of my situation. Don't know how to contact you privately on this but would love to chat .


  • FuturePease
    I just graduated with my master's in May and was diagnosed 2 days ago, 11-28-17. I teach elementary school all day, meetings all afternoon, then come home and sleep almost every day until 7 or 8. I'm supposed to be planning a wedding and spending time with my fiance. Instead, I'm sleeping all the time I'm not in school. I'm barely getting lessons planned. Any suggestions?
  • indygirl71
    Im also a teacher in Scotland! I was diagnosed 9 years ago and after a bad year initially, I built up my stamina ( helped by meds and cutting down my days) and returned to work. Ive manage fairly well over the years but Ive been off work for the last few weeks  and have definitely felt myself wilting and the fatigue and physical weaknesses getting to be too much - further exacerbated by worrying about how I'm going to manage at work. Like yourself I feel as if Ive still got a lot to offer but the physical effort required (I work in the specials needs sector), and the lack of flexibility available with a teaching post is not consistent with managing ms effectively.  Obviously your post is from two and a half years ago. I would be really interested in knowing how you've got on since your post.
  • aroberson

    Sounds like we are in the same boat.  I am also 38 and teach high school.  I am confused, scared, and not sure what the future will hold as far as continuing with teaching.  I have taken off SO much work this year and it has got to be a red flag for the administration.  I was excited, to see your post and look forward to hearing from you, so we can support each other.  

  • aroberson
    I saw that someone mentioned an anti fatigue medicine.  I was wondering what it is?
  • lbherder

    Hello, Im so glad you posted this!  I am a teacher....third and fourth grade.  I was diagnosed this year which took me to part time and now not working at all just to get the treatment figured out. I have been struggling with fatigue for many years and now I know why. I'm  thinking I may need something more flexible but may get on the sub list next year to see how it goes. Money is a factor for us so I need to find away to make some money. What do you teach?

  • aroberson

    Hello fellow teachers.  I am so glad that we have found each other for support.  I struggled with if I should tell my principal what I was going through or not.  Finally after so much time off with appointments and testing, I felt that I need to explain.  He was very supportive and I felt very comfortable talking with him about it.  This week I got the diagnosis of Demylenating Disease, whatever that really means, and was told that I had to start infusions this next week.  I told him about this.  Well, this proved to bite me in the rear. I am the Team Leader for my grade level department, which in our county is basically the department head.  Anyway, yesterday he came to my room and said, "I just wanted to fill you in on some changes I'm making for next year.  Mrs. (Not mentioning names) will be moving to your grade filling so and so's spot.  You two will be working together as a team and just wanted to prepare you for the meeting on Monday. Oh and I'll be going to her with things from now on.  Just wanted you to know."  And then he walked out.  I am upset.  I've been at this place for 7 years!  This person is new!  Oh well right? 

    So, on a different note.  Addressing all of the people in this discussion, how advanced is yours, what are your symptoms, how are you handling it?




  • knitmeapie

    Another teacher here. I run a music studio out of my home. It's hard because I can't take time off without having to take tons of time to reschedule everyone and taking a huge pay cut. It's less stressful to just power through it. I've had to spend more of my teaching time sitting down and I have to really concentrate on ennunciating clearly and staying calm and patient with my students.

    I'd love to hear how everyone else is coping with MS and how it affects your teaching.

  • cwalker41

    I am a high school librarian and have just been diagnosed this summer, so no one knows at work as yet. I am so nervous anout going to work and not being able to function. I don't know what my alternatives are orwhat's goinjg to happen. I know I must keep my income and definitely health insurance.

    It's hard to find a sub that can step in to a largish library on the fly and manage and so I am tormn about whether to try to somehow plan ahead.

    How are you all doing it?

  • Tbn
    I am a music teacher as well.  I teach HS Band. I was first diagnosed in April if 2017.  I have been teaching for 27 years.   I’m finding it more and more difficult to be patient with students.  This really bothers me because I used to be very patient.  I’m also having a hard time figuring out how I can do my job and still have enough energy to  take care of my family when I get home.  Also my vision is not always the best.  That’s a big source of frustration when reading music.  I can’t afford to retire yet and I’m just wondering how much longer I can keep up with the demands of a HS Band director.  I am open to any ideas you may have or any experiences you have had with how MS has affected your teaching.  

  • julie1272

    I teach 4th grade and am 34. I've had muscle numbness/weakness in my left arm and left leg. After a MRI that shows potential MS they have referred me to a neurologist. We start our school year in 2 weeks and I'm anxious for how it will go. I get tired walking/using my left arm because of the weakness and numbness, etc. I have already questioned myself what the future will hold in terms of teaching-especially when it can be such a stressful profession. 😄.


    If you don't mind me asking, what have been your symptoms? Has it effected your job? Thanks!

  • BanisMS

    julie1272 I am also a teacher  with MS. I was diagnosed last year after experiencing facial numbness and optic neuritis. I was out on medical leave for a year, so this will be my first year back since being diagnosed. I too am very anxious, but I have a lot of support from my principal. They are making accommodations for me, so I will see how it goes. I plan to pace myself and do more teaching from a seated position. I also plan to take anything not completed in class (paperwork, lesson prep etc.) home immediately, rather than staying so long at work. It wasn't uncommon for me to stay at work as late as 6:30 every night. I do know that if I become more of a hinderance than a help to my students, I will take an early retirement. I joined this profession to help children. It would be unfair to them if I couldn't give them all they need to succeed due to my illness.

  • smileycodz
    I'm about to go on medical leave because I've taken so much time off. How did you feel when you went back? Were you ok & able to cope? 
  • smileycodz
    Ooh! This sounds exactly like me! We just started the school term, then I started getting weird symptoms. Had an MRI, found demyelination & they think it could be MS. I have been so tired with teaching, not being able to cope. But pushed through because I love the kids. But now I'm forced to take medical al leave, hopefully the paperwork goes through! 
  • BanisMS

    I am also a teacher and I'm so glad to see there are other teachers who are experiencing the same things. Currently, I have not been able to return to work, so I am somewhat disappointed. A new school year is approaching, and I am still waiting for the MRI that will determine when or if I can return.

    I think it is a wonderful idea to form a network of fellow teachers with MS. The disease is frightening enough, but worrying about lesson planning, hall patrol, dances and such make things all the more discouraging.

  • ldonato23

    Hi Julie,

    I am 37 years old and was diagnosed with MS in January of 2015, and began my first year of teaching in September 2014. I had relocated to a new state, left all of my support behind, and as I am sure we all did, felt like the world was ending when I recieved my diagnosis. I teach grades K-2 Special Education with students who have autism specturm disorders, down's syndrome, and emotional and behavioral disorders. I could not love my job more and I truly believe that my diagnosis did not cripple me as emotionally as I would have thought, because of my love for teaching. 


    My symptoms are fairly mild with facial twitches and pretty severe tremors in my left hand/arm. I have had numbness in both of my legs but so fat it has been temporary. I have also been diagnosed with Trigeminal Neurolgia which has been quite painful. I began treatments of Avonex injections in April and that has been the hardest part. The side effects keep me in bed for minimally 24 hours and my legs continue to spasm and twitch for days afterwards.


    Fatigue was one of the biggest issues for me prior to my diagnosis and since. I am being treated for the fatigue with adderal and that has helped a bit. I am hoping to change medications next month to Gilenya and am hoping that stopping the injections will help me start off the new school year feeling pretty good! Doing what I love each day has helped me maintain a positive mind state throughout this difficult year, so if I can give you any advice it is to give it a try. We all have different limits, pains, symptoms and you know yourself better than anyone. Do what you can and above all else, do what makes you happy!

  • BanisMS

    Hi idanato23, I'm so glad to see that you are still able to keep up with the demands of teaching. This is one thing that I am so worried about for myself. Today, my employer suggested a possible medical retirement. I just don't feel like giving up yet. Your story inspires me to forge ahead. Thanks.

  • aroberson

    I have taught at the same school for EIGHT years!  I was department head.  TWO days after I told the principal that I had MS and was taking off for infusions, he walked in my classroom and announced that the new teacher (only been there 3 months) would now be the department head!  

    If it were a matter of functioning, my scores speak for themselves!!!!  

    I have a really bad feeling here....

  • workoutgirl
    I am a PE teacher just diagnosed in January 2016.  I have had 1 round of steroid injections and they now want to start me on Gilenya.  I was just wondering how you felt when you took Gilenya?  My biggest problem is I am really tired all the time and my right arm and fingetips are numb and tingle.  They found lesions on my brain and cervical spine in the C5/C6 area which makes my neck and shoulders tight and sore as if I just worked out.  I am still working but by the end of the day I am done.  What do you suggest to take to give me some more energy?  I also coach basketball and softball and just wondering if this is going to be way to much for me to handle.  This is all so new to me and I am just overwhelmed with the news and what to expect as I get older.  I am such an active person, played college sports and workout and run everyday.  This news has just made me feel so upset, lost and feeling as if I can not do anything anymore.  I have 2 boys 14 and 9 that play a variety of sports and are very active.  We have not told them exactly what is wrong and feel they need to know.   My husband is also supportive and is helping me cope with this disease.  Any advice or suggestions whould be helpful.