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How to get through a back to work where i will be made to feel like shit

(17 Posts)
Dippydippydora Tue 24-Oct-17 00:48:57

Been off work today as literary could not get off the toilet. I know I should wait 48 hours before going back in but when it comes to being off my boss is a cow
This is my 4th day off this year.
At the beginning of the year I was off one day after tripping down the stairs and being taken to hospital. lucky after this I was starting a weeks leave so had time to recover as I was badly bruised with a twisted knee- in my back to work all I got was how I was letting the company down with having time off did I realise the Impact I was having on other staff and did I really need to go to hospital.
The next two days I was off for a misscarrage and was told by her I should have come in and worn a thicker pad- nice- plus chapter and verse again on how I was letting the company and staff on my team down. She even said she cancelled an important meeting to do my back to work which i think was said to make me feel guilty as it's in the handbook that back to works don't have to be down on the day we get back as long as it is within a week.
Tomorrow I will get it all again no doubt. Do I just keep my mouth shut and nod along while thinking of something else or do I stand up for myself. I am just fed up of being made to feel like shit for being off when it is totally justified

Hawkmoth Tue 24-Oct-17 00:53:54

What's been said to you is not right.

FeralBeryl Tue 24-Oct-17 01:05:40

Erm - if it’s not been 48 hours and that is policy, call in for tomorrow too!
Do you have an HR dept?
Do not be bullied, I’m all for motivating staff to not take the piss re: sickness and absence. Yours are entirely genuine, rare reasons.
If you don’t like the turn of the interview, calmly state that you’d like to have it documented that you disagree, then seek advice. flowers

Princessgenie Tue 24-Oct-17 07:09:24

My take is that return to work interviews are for checking that you are feeling better; updating you on anything you have missed whilst off and agreeing priorities now you are back if there is anything super urgent that needs picking up quickly and then moving forward. Yes. If you were a repeat offender I would press the point of impact on team etc (but NEVER after a miscarriage - I am so sorry that your boss did that) but not overly labour it.
Answer the questions factually. And if it feels inappropriate in its manner address it afterwards with HR. It's no defence / excuse but most managers just do not understand return to work interviews and get them wrong - I think some significant retraining is required which they won't do if they don't know it's not needed xx

Monstamio Tue 24-Oct-17 07:14:57

It sounds like she will give you this treatment whether you take another day or not, so you might as well take it. Plus, your team members are not going to thank you for soldiering on and potentially giving them all d&v.

When you do have the back to work, I would make a note of the questions she asks and absolutely go to HR is she is being inappropriate

youarenotkiddingme Tue 24-Oct-17 07:24:41

She needs to write those comments on back to work form.

My line manager can be offish but that's just the way she is re anything requiring sympathy/empathy! But she wouldn't be unkind or say those comments in circumstances.

Do you have an email for her or company?

I would email in and say you've had d and v but feel you need to return during quarantine period after the previous 2 comments <name them> were made on previous absense.

ButFirstTea Tue 24-Oct-17 07:34:46

Can you take a union rep or HR colleague into the meeting with you?

Dippydippydora Tue 24-Oct-17 07:38:23

We are small and don't have an HR unfortunetly. Just a chief excutive and a very ineffective trustee board

PoppyPopcorn Tue 24-Oct-17 07:44:26

I am sorry that you have been ill but having someone who is off a lot is a total nightmare in a small organisation. Bigger organisations can shuffle staff and cover easily, but your absence in a small operation will be noticed a lot more.

Absenteeism can be a big problem for organisations and they feel that they have to come down hard on sickness - which is a shame for the people who are genuinely ill.

MargotsDevil Tue 24-Oct-17 07:47:15

Our back to work forms have "script" which the manager must follow and are worded more along the lines of "what can we do to help you not be absent again to minimise impact to organisation". My boss always just points at that box and shrugs her shoulders and writes "nothing"!

Do you have to sign the form too? Maybe take the opportunity to add your own comment when you sign? It does sound unpleasant.

abatcalledjohn Tue 24-Oct-17 07:53:55

I am sorry that you have been ill but having someone who is off a lot is a total nightmare in a small organisation.

That's their problem, not the OP's confused. This is the 4th day this year - not crazy by any stretch, especially considering they weren't preventable.

And for telling the OP to "wear a thicker pad" the manager deserves to be disciplined.

OP, take it to the chief exec. If he won't deal with it, take it further (official grievance, union).

unicornface Tue 24-Oct-17 07:55:20

I would telephone ACAS for a bit of advice and words to use.

Your manager sounds like she is following some kind of absence management policy/strategy (possibly one entirely made up in her head), she also sounds like she is under pressure. IIRC any pregnancy related illness should be not be included in an absence management policy, so she is being very unfair with that one. Also if she cancelled a meeting because she thought that she needed to do the return to work meeting then that's on her for not knowing the policy.

Absence may well be a pain for employers but you don't know how much the op put herself out with over time, extra shifts or missing lunch breaks. It's a two way thing with employment, or at least it should be!

Scabetty Tue 24-Oct-17 08:01:42

I would not sit and take it this time. Tell her if she is overstepping the line. As for the thicker pad .... you should have reported her.

unicornface Tue 24-Oct-17 08:04:46

I think that it is probably not too late to report the thicker pad comment, that is truly awful. I had a male manager who was pretty insensitive when I had a MC but I have to say that even he was not that offensive.

FenellaMaxwellsPony Tue 24-Oct-17 08:05:23

You've had D&V? Go in. And lick everything in her office.

Sparkletastic Tue 24-Oct-17 08:22:29

Do you have a grievance procedure? If not submit a written complaint against her. Time to take her on.

Dippydippydora Tue 24-Oct-17 08:23:16

I often through my break and on average I would say do at least a day a month extra unpaid. We have lots of events and I always show my support. I also have to wait an extra 45 minutes twice a week for the bus and always work in that time (this is my choice I know)

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