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To basically ask no one to speak to me at work today?

(35 Posts)
VelvetSpoon Thu 25-May-17 08:13:55

Because I am so on edge it feels like one more thing will tip me over the brink..

In the past fortnight, my bf has suffered a bereavement. I can't go into the circumstances but it has been very traumatic. He is in a terrible state and I am trying to urge him to go to his GP because I am so worried about his MH. His family are 100s of miles away and he has no close friends so it's all down to me.

As well as this I have a DC going through GCSES who needs a lot of my time, and another DC who is currently doing job interviews and struggling, so ditto. Oh and my car's now off the road possibly for good so I have no transport, and my journey to work is trebled as a result...

And then there's work. I've been out of my 'home' office this week travelling to other offices. I have a work phone but it has limited functionality and can only do email. So I have the joy of seeing emails piling in from various people either chasing me for stuff or giving me additional tasks to do.

I know when I get in today (traffic on the bus route is horrendous so even though I set off at 7.30 I won't be in before 9) that I will get instantly bombarded with people demanding this that and the other. And in my current frame of mind. I am very likely to tell them to fuck off.

So wibu to ask people just not to say anything to me? I'll go in and do what I can, but I can't deal with anyone's shit today.

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Thu 25-May-17 08:17:52

While you have my sympathy (and I do mean that - it's hard when everything is getting too much) unfortunately if your job involves dealing with these issues and answering people's queries you have to deal with it. The only way out of it is to call in sick.

You can ask for patience and a bit of understanding though.

PurpleWithRed Thu 25-May-17 08:21:38

Will the 'people demanding this and that' be making work demands or personal demands? Either way rehearse a script now - "Sorry, I'm under a lot of pressure having been out of the office and with some personal issues at home. I need to prioritise - can we deal with this next week/some other time/I won't be able to do this for you/can you get someone else to do this/can you just f the F off right now"

Maybe not the last one!

DeadGood Thu 25-May-17 08:22:08

Can you work from a different office?

In honesty I think you should a. hide and failing that b. Wear headphones and look unapproachable c. compose a script in your head, and rehearse it, then use it. "Morning! Sorry, I'm a closed shop today, I can't take on any new work/I will be looking at that next week/thanks for your patience, I know you need this, but I can't look at it til tomorrow at the earliest"

Damage control. I know how you feel, it's good that you can foresee that today may be problematic, try to avert it if possible and work away from your desk as much as you can.

VelvetSpoon Thu 25-May-17 08:25:33

It's not exactly my job to answer queries. But people do come to me as I'm a source of knowledge on certain business areas.

The script idea is a good one. I am known for my amenable nature, but I just don't have the mental resources today.

NellieFiveBellies Thu 25-May-17 08:28:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

blueskyinmarch Thu 25-May-17 08:28:55

Be clear when you get in that you have a lot to deal with today having been out all week and you are not able to answer all their questions today. Either ask that they e mail you with any queries or say you will be available between maybe 11-12 to answer questions - then you can be mentally prepared?

VelvetSpoon Thu 25-May-17 08:33:52

The problem with being signed off is that everything and more would still be waiting when I get back. The meetings I've had to do this week have been unavoidable as planned before all this.

I forgot in my OP that DS also has a friend staying tomorrow so I need to find time to get some food and sort out the spare room. And I'm out of the office again tomorrow at more meetings.

I have a knot in my chest. I know it's anxiety sad

ShotsFired Thu 25-May-17 08:37:04

Can you book a meeting room and take yourself in there for as much time as possible today? Turn your back to any window or door so you can't glance up and see someone wanting you etc.

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Thu 25-May-17 08:37:37

I think if you have knowledge that they need then it actually is your job to answer queries, unless there is someone else who could answer the same questions. Unfortunately you can't really hold people back in completing their tasks because you don't want to talk to people.

Having a script and offering a set time to answer queries sounds like a workable idea. Is there a separate office you can work in today, or is it open plan?

AwfulSomething Thu 25-May-17 08:47:59

I am hugely sympathetic but you do know they too will be dealing with any number of stresses in their lives too......

VelvetSpoon Thu 25-May-17 08:52:29

I doubt very much anyone has quite the combination of stuff going on that I do. I don't have any family other than my DC so I have no one to lean on myself, everything is down to me.

Empty meeting rooms are like gold dust here, and they don't have full it facilities so I'm better off at my desk. Open plan so no escape, and very informal so people are in the habit of shouting to you from the next bank of desks or beyond. Noise levels are pretty awful.

Coastalcommand Thu 25-May-17 08:52:35

You would be unreasonable to say that. Colleagues will often also be going through hard times but everyone has to be kind and reasonable to make things work.

IheartDodo Thu 25-May-17 08:55:09

Could you put an auto email reply on? Saying something like "I have a lot going on at the moment but I will answer your query ASAP"?
A colleague of mine sometimes puts a note on her door saying "do not disturb", I thought it was a bit rude at first but actually now I think it's a great idea.

TheMShip Thu 25-May-17 08:56:21

Headphones & script works. Also can you get an online shop order done on your lunch break, have it delivered tomorrow?

LadyRoseate Thu 25-May-17 08:57:07

So sorry to hear what you're going through. I hate that feeling that everything it on top of you and every way you turn there is just more to sort out. Awful. And your poor bf flowers

I think it's all in the way you say it and making it sound as unlike "fuck off" as possible (while actually, in the politest possible way, still meaning fuck off smile)

Email is great for this - could you send a group email like the ones people do when they're on holiday? Saying that while you are coming in, some personal matters and huge workload mean there may be some delays which you apologise for in advance. You may not be able to get back to everyone straight away but will do so asap.

That way you are basically making people feel relieved that you're not actually off, and showing care for them by apologising that you may be a bit stressed and busy. In return they are more likely to be concerned for you and back off.

Hope you have an ok day.

arbrighton Thu 25-May-17 08:58:01

DS can 'sort' the room if old enough to be doing GCSEs or job interviews. And buy the food for that matter assuming there's a shop in walking distance.

But YABU to basically say can I go to work but not actually do my job and actually say 'don't talk to me'. Either go in and do it, or call in sick- you can't get signed off straight away anyway. Yes, the work would be there when you come back, but it's right now that's the issue

T1mum3 Thu 25-May-17 08:59:24

Could you talk to your boss and ask to work from home for a bit if that's possible for your line of work? Explain that you are under stress due to your partner's bereavement and you feel you would be more productive at home. I know you feel this would be deferring things, but people might be more likely to back off and leave you alone when you do get back if they know that you have been dealing with a stressful life event.

BarbarianMum Thu 25-May-17 09:01:37

Yy to telling ypur ds sort things out for his guest - or cancelling them. You don't have to be the one to sort everything, for evefyone, esp at this time.

Blinkyblink Thu 25-May-17 09:01:47


MatildaTheCat Thu 25-May-17 09:06:18

Delegate the home stuff. A friend of ds won't be expecting much. Someone else can shop.

When you drive home tonight, open the windows and put on some gentle music and visualise the stresses of your day being blown away.

NancyWake Thu 25-May-17 09:10:55

Tbh, one child doing GCSEs and another doing interviews is nothing out of the ordinary. I appreciate you're very concerned about your bfs mental health, but unless the bereavement is your family member rather than his, I don't think people in the office are likely to understand.

Why are you responsible for his mental health? Is he the father of your children? Is this relationship stressing you more than it should?

Babymamamama Thu 25-May-17 09:16:10

So sorry your going through this stress. It sounds awful. But your work colleagues are separate from this and deserve to be treated with manners no matter what. If you don't feel you can manage that then maybe take a few days off with stress yourself until you feel more composed?

nannybeach Thu 25-May-17 09:19:10

You say you doubt anyone has the same sort of stuff as you do. I was working full time nights, sometimes sleeping an hour in the day, youngest DD with baby/plus high risk pregnancy, thrown out of flat,plus discovers DP is cheating on her, have to make room for her and all her stuff in tiny cottage, other DD rings can she come and stay cos she has drug problem and wants to be away from druggy friends to "get clean", one DS has rapid cycling bi-polar, suicidal, other DS has been sectioned and commited by wife who wants him to come and live with me. Couldnt confide in DH ( older kids from previous marriage, he doesnt understand they want their Mum in times of crisis cos he never had that, his walked out, went off with another man when he was 7) I ws so stressed and confused thought i had dementia, rang their helpline, they told me it was stress. it was hell said no to oldest DD, her problems were self induced, had to help the most vulnerable first, was told by BF I HAD to learn the word NO, was a very stressfull few months I can tell you, a lot of the stuff tat happened I dont want to post on here, I didnt think I could cope with one more thing I can tell you. So I do sympathise, you can ask people to give you a bit of space, and bare with you but as some have rightly said, you cant tell people to fuck off, you dont know what is going on in other folks lives.

OllyBJolly Thu 25-May-17 09:23:14

I used to work with someone who would stand up and say something like "Announcement everyone! I'm totally maxed out today and the only way I'm going to get through everything without crashing is to get my head down, no interruptions and get on with it. Sorry if it seems rude but normal service resumes tomorrow."

It was fine. And she was supremely focused on these days and probably three times as productive as other days!

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