AIBU - DP deciding to work from home when I'm off ill?(47 Posts)
Background - I founded a business a few years ago. DP joined last year.
Me: Work related mental breakdown. Everyone agrees time away is what's needed to recover. I am now 'off'.
Also me: Back injury reoccurring leaving me either limited in movement or housebound, unable to drive or really do anything.
Him, who has access to 3 offices and a car: "I'm now going to work from home every single day. At least half of it if not all of it 7 days a week. I'm also going to ask you about work and talk about work. Im going to be working on the sofa next to you and I'm going to take all my work related stress out on you even if I don't say it's about work. I expect you to look after the house, meals, cats etc'
Me: I need physical and mental space away from work though to recover.
Him: I'm doing all the work though because you can't.
Am I being massively unreasonable? Should I just be grateful and suck it up? I need my time and space to get better.
I feel I should add DP hasn't decided to WFH all the time because he wants to check on me or look after me. It's so he can get some space......
Am I an entitled brat to want at least a couple of days a week where work isn't in my face at home?
Sack him or ban any work related activity from your house.
It's obvious he doesn't think it's 'fair' for him to do the work by himself - he probably also thinks you're 'skiving off duty' secretly too.
This way he can make sure you don't get any 'time off'.....very passive aggressive and not supportive of you at ALL.
Did he actually say all that, OP? Or is this what you have deduced from his behaviour?
Regarding working from home, you need to set aside office space. He cannot be working whilst having conversations with you.
If he starts annoying you move from the room he is working in. Set up your own space elsewhere. Get into the habit of going out on long walks, cycles, swims or runs too. Great opportunity for alone space.
Probably a 50/50 split. The "I'm working from home to get some space - the house is yours to look after' is what he said, plus the 'Im doing all the work because you cant' bit. It's been an ongoing saga tbh and I may as well just be at work.
I feel a bit silly posting this on here but wanted some perspectives of if I'm being too sensitive or not being as sympathetic towards his needs as I should.
Yes, he is probably feeling sorry for himself. He will have to do more and he will feel the strain. I think the best thing is not to get into or dwell on those conversations. He’ll get used to what he has to do and maybe more organised so will feel the strain less. When he starts seeing things as his job he will grow to accept this change in circumstances.
In the meantime do all the easy things you can. Cooking simple things, making cups of tea, picking up stuff to tidy when you move from room to room and being pleasant. You’ll have less arguments if you don’t start them or ask him how he feels.
Sod that! He needs space from what, exactly?
"You dont seem to understand, this isnt holiday time for me where I'll be lounging around at home doing housework and waiting on you - this is medically ordered being signed off from work. I will not be available for any kind of work to do with the business, and that includes being a pa and consultant for you. Its important for someone to be manning the office while Im signed off, and that person now has to be you since I am on ordered leave. Its not possible for you to just work from here, youre needed in the office."
Are you technically his boss? Are there other people in the business at his level or higher? I would be very tempted to send out an email to everyone at a suitable level saying "Just to remind everyone, I will be totally unavailable for any work interaction for a while. Mr35 however will be in the office as usual and should be able to handle any issues until my return."
Do you have joint finances? If so perhaps you should decide to book yourself a nice cottage somewhere for yourself so he can get space at home and you can be away from work and recover.
I may as well just be at work.
That, my dear, is his point/agenda.
As for the 'house is your responisbility' crap, he sounds like the kind of guy who, when he becomes a dad, refuses to do anything around the house or support his partner with childcare etc simply because she's a SAHM.
I'm getting the feeling he's only in this for the money and 'easy ride'.
It doesn't sound like he actually cares about you.
How much money/assets would he get if you both split up?
It's something to bear in mind seeing as he's only out for and thinking about himself and his own 'needs'.
My cocklodger alarm is ringing. If I were your other employees, I'd be looking for another job because it sounds like your partner is getting preferential treatment. He's also being an immature dickhead.
Who owns the company?
Are there other employees that you/your DP manage?
How can he expect you to look after the house, meals, cats etc (and presumably him when he is at home all the time) when you have had a mental breakdown and a serious back injury? How exactly?
You mention DP so you're not married?
Well he doesn’t give a shit about you then does he? He’s thinking entirely about himself and he’s taking the piss because he’s married to the boss.
You need to sit him down and tell him he has to work from the office or he will have to find another job. If he really wants to work from home and it’s reasonable to do so it needs to be in a designated space in the house which is away from you.
I'd tell him the more you see/hear about work the longer it will take to get better - see what he says to that.
Is he usually this selfish? Maybe it'd be better if he didn't work for your business and got himself a different job? What would he say if you suggested that (in a way that makes it sound like it's for his benefit!)? Could your business cope without him?
Have you been signed off by GP? Who us everyone? While I understand you are reporting your stress you appear to be dismissive that he may also be stressed- and prob even more so now, is he picking up more work or do you have cover for your sick leave?
He's not unreasonable to expect you to do the bulk of household stuff, but otherwise, can't he at least sit in another room, if he must work from home? And agree not to discuss anything to do with work with you?
I had three months' off work with stress and anxiety earlier this year, and I did take on the lion's share of the household things. It's not actually that great for your mental health to have nothing at all to do.
This work has driven you to the point that you need time away. It's not unreasonable that your DP could also be close to breaking point.
Once you are in a better headspace, you both need to discuss your working practices to better define the work/life spaces.
There's no money in it, it's a non-profit social enterprise and at the moment it's just me and him as active Directors and a further 2 non-execs plus 10 staff. That will change soon as we have some help coming in to rework our structure.
He's single handedly doing 3 people's job at the min - one of which was mine and it broke me, same for the other chap.
So yeah, not sure all the LTB talk is quite what's needed. Just an assessment of whether it's fair for me to put my foot down more with wanting work out of the house at this point in time.
the house is yours to look after
Fuck that. You're ill and on medical time off.
If he won't or can't see this, he's a tit.
Working from home, whoever is doing it, has to work for everyone in the home. I work from home full-time now (I used to have an office, so would go in 2-3 days a week, but now I don't so full time from the dining table basically). My dh is self-employed and also works from home some days (he has an office/workshop space that is his usual place of work most of the week, that's not at home, about 15 minutes away). It's different because I'm not off sick but if he wants to work at home, it can be disruptive to me. We discuss it at the start of the week and if he has any days when he plans to work from home most or all of the day, he lets me know and I adjust my schedule (I usually go work from somewhere else, coffee shop, library, wherever). There are other days when I tell him he absolutely has to be out of the house between certain hours as I can't be interrupted.
So basically, it's not the same because I'm not off sick (though if I was off sick, he would definitely make sure to be out of the house to give me a chance to rest). But managing everyone's work from home schedules has to be a joint effort and he should be discussing it with you and should be something you are both happy with. It would be slightly different if he had no office to go to or if he had a separate home office and spent all his day in there, but no he shouldn't be on top of you if you are unwell and need to rest or have some peace. And working from the sofa is not productive anyway and that would be especially worrisome if you're his boss.
No doubt carrying on with the whole workload of running a business when one of you can't be there is tough and stressful (I often help my dh with our family business, though I work full-time in a completely unrelated job as well, so I get it). But if he is well enough to be in work, he should be there and working and you should be resting so you can get better. But whatever you do has to be a joint decision, not his just telling you want he's going to do, as working from home should never impinge on the other partner.
It sounds to me like he does not believe that you are having a breakdown or have had a breakdown, nor does he seem to truly understand what this means. It sounds like he thinks you are just doing this for a 'break'
Have you tried explaining how serious this is?
You need to tell him categorically he is not welcome or allowed to bring anything home. You should not need to move out because he won't listen to you!
Give him some information on your conditions and talk it through, and reinforce that he must man up now. The last thing you need is this!
I think you're right though that it sounds like your organisational structure needs some massive re-organisation, if you're the founder and I presume director and you are off with stress as is another high level staff person, then something is not right. Your partner may well feel stressed, but shouldn't be taking it out on you. You either need to hire more staff or change the way you all work so that everyone can cope better, but it doesn't sound like him being home more is going to help you any. If he's going to be still working anyway, he should at least do it from the office and give you rest time, or else go off and stay with a friend or family member until you are ready to go back to work.
I was off work in the summer due to stress. One of the things I made clear to DP when I was signed off was that I wasn't going to be doing all the housework just because I was at home.
For the first week or so, I barely did anything at home, DP worked FT and did the house stuff. I did walk the dog and do bits that I felt up to but I really needed time with no pressure at all to deal with the stress.
When I started to feel better, I did more and more, but because I wanted to, DP never expected me to do it. Just before going back to more I was doing 95% of the housework and gardening but by that point, I wanted to be busy again. Now I'm back at work full time its back to the normal split.
What is his role in the company? Are you his senior?
Could you suggest that him working from home and discussing work with you is slowing your recovery and therefore increasing the amount of time you'll be off work?
"He's single handedly doing 3 people's job at the min - one of which was mine and it broke me, same for the other chap."
So what exactly do you think is going to happen here?
He'll be unable to cope, your relationship will end and the company will fold without you ever seeing a penny in profit would be my guess.
Him sharing your sofa is the least of your worries.
Just read your last update, so if the job nearly crushed you is it not likely to do the same to your dp? Perhaps would explain his reluctance to take it all on?
If things are this tricky you either need more help/staff or you need to scale back. It does not sound healthy.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.