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to not want my boss to call me at 6:30pm when I am eating my dinner?

(46 Posts)
PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:10:32

I am off sick at the moment. I usually work until 2:30pm on a tuesday if I was at work. When we had a home visit I told her I could have her at my home no later than 5pm as from 6pm onwards we will be eating dinner and then putting DD to bed.

She keeps saying to me, is is ok to call you at x time? And I keep saying to her, I would prefer not to call me after 5:30pm as it is family time, eating, winddown before bed.

I was in work last week until wed, when my gp signed me off sick for 1 week. She is impossible to contact so I left her an email and a voicemail to let her know I would be off until this wed coming, all being well I would return to work on wednesay, call me if any problems, I have a go cert etc. No call from her all week, despite me being in, apart from the odd half hour here and there to get milk from shops etc. On Friday I left the house at 3:45pm and did not return before end of office hours, but no messages on voicemail.

So, this evening at 6:35pm, when we were all sat, DH, DD and I at the table eating our tea, she called me. I normally ignore the phone if I am eating. DH does not and he passed the phone to me.

'pavlov? pavlov its xx, I tried calling you at the end of last week but the phone just kept ringing...'
'ok, not sure why the voicemail did not pick it up...'
'i am just phoning to find out what is going on, i need to know when you are coming back to work'
'did you get my messages last week'
'yes, but I thought I had better phone, in case things have changed'
'i would have called you if things have changed xx, or if I was still poorly I would call you after seeing the gp tomorrow when my sick note runs out, I am returning to work tomorrow, as long as I feel well in the morning'
'so you are feeling better then?'
'right this second yes, you know it varies day to day, but I am hoping to return tomorrow yes'
'oh, ok, well we shall catch up tomorrow then, see you tomorrow'


I am annoyed for several reasons. One it was a pointless call as I already told her everything there was to know last week, she did not leave a voicemail message (we have an ansafone and if this is full, rarely is, we have Sky messaging service as backup).

But mostly, why did she call me at 6:30pm when I have already told her I am not available at this time? I would not be expected to be working at this time, whether off sick or not!

angry I hate being interrupted when I am eating. It is so rude.

AIBU or does she indeed own my ass?

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:11:57

Should also probably add, that out of the last 8 weeks, I have been off for 6 with hyperemesis, going back to work for a day, then being violently ill, then did a week, then a few days, then this last week off. She knows its not as simple as 'getting better' that i have to take each day as it comes.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:22:13

It is a bit long winded isn't it?

Shall I summarise?

I am off sick and told my boss previously not to call me at home after 5:30pm latest as this is family time - to eat our tea as a family, and prepare DD for bed. She called me this evening at 6:35pm while we were all eating our tea to find out when I am returning to work, even though I told her last week my sick note runs out today and I will be returning tomorrow.

AIBU to expect her to either call me at a respectable time during office hours or wait until I see her tomorrow?

Better? grin

sunburntats Tue 16-Jun-09 19:22:30

No yanbu!
You have already clearly stated what is happening, you were clear in your instruction re not phoning after 5.30pm.

Although i too get many phonecalls at home in the evening, on days off and at weekends...even got one on new years eve and had to go in and sort stuff out sad
Its a bit annoying but then i would hate for them to struggle needlesly and my job unfortunately is not a job that i can just switch off to or ignore the phone.

You may need to let her know your preferences more forcefully.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:24:15

yes, I am thinking I need to let her know via a formal email at work copied to my union rep grin.

georgiemum Tue 16-Jun-09 19:26:26

Sounds like one of my old bosses. She even had a go at me when I can into work as I was rushing off to the airport on my day off to fix a problem (the server exploded the previous night and wiped out all our work).

'And why are you wearing jeans??'

'Because I am on on holiday (points to suitcase) and not supposed to be here. In fact I was here very late last noght and in very early to sort this mess out.'

'But you are not alowed to wear jeans to work.'

'@@@@@@*****!!!!!!' (under breath)

bigchris Tue 16-Jun-09 19:27:17

well i think yabu
if the phone rings while you are eating just don't answer it

southeastastra Tue 16-Jun-09 19:30:37

my boss calls me up all the time at weird hours. i have a separate work phone and turn that off when i don't want to talk. do you have one? tell her you need one if she calls that often

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:35:30

Southeastastra - thats a good idea! I am sure she will be able to find the money in the budget! I work normal office hours, I do not have the type of job that goes on outside my office hours. I do my work when I am there, sometimes I work late to finish off something risk related, but when I am out of the office, its nothing to do with me until I am next in.

bigchris - I would have ignored the phone, DH answered it, and then passed it to me. Personally I do not answer the phone between 6-8pm, I pick up messages and return the calls once DD is in bed. I don't usually need to ignore the phone, as most people we know, know this is DDs tea and bed time and respect that (or risk having her screaming in their ears!).

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:36:05

georgie shock cheeky mare!

bigchris Tue 16-Jun-09 19:37:43

ooh you need to get dh on board with the no answering the phone when we're eating thing!! I would be cross with him too

SerendipitousHarlot Tue 16-Jun-09 19:38:04

She shouldn't even be calling you when you're off sick, it's harrassment.

If you hadn't told her when you were off, or just not turned up for work, she has a duty of care to call you - but you have a sicknote, and made her aware of the situation. If I were you, I'd be speaking to HR.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:38:06

The only time I would expect any type of contact outside normal hours is if there was an urgent recall of an offender and a member of the public where at risk and I had information that was crucial to the recall process. In those circumstances I would not be complaining about it.

georgiemum Tue 16-Jun-09 19:38:25

TBH she was a bit out of touch... but of good entertainment value!

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:42:13

serendipity Problem is - HR and the managers they are in each others pockets. HR have moved over to this 'business model' of HR'ing. It means they don't really give a flying f about the staff unless they save money, or unless they are going to get their asses sued. They push and test the limits of policy and law to the max. I have no faith in HR to do the right thing. But that wont stop me complaining anyway grin

I think I shall email her when I return tomorrow requesting more formally that no contact is made with me outside of office hours unless it is an emergency.

bigchris - I told DH as the phone was ringing, 'do NOT answer it, we will call them back' he just picked the phone up anyway and did that handwaving dismissive thing. And I was cross with him too grin

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:42:58

serendipitous sorry got your name wrong blush

Legacy Tue 16-Jun-09 19:45:34

Is she young? does she have kids? Does she work until 7 p.m.?

If ,she probably just has no idea of the importance of evening routine for a young family.

You are probably just on her 'end of the day to-do list'...

When I was pre-children this is the sort of thing I would have done blush.

I bet she doesn't realise you feel like this, and would be surprised if you told her. She is probably being put under pressure from her boss to manage her 'sickness absence' numbers...

Personally I would be more angry with DH for answering the phone.

SerendipitousHarlot Tue 16-Jun-09 19:46:24

Yes, Pavlov, I feel your pain... do we work for the same company? grin

I totally agree with the email thing. You should have written proof that you've requested no contact outside office hours - and then if she does it again, you can 'ave her wink

I can't stand that crap - badgering you into committing to going back - you're ill, tough shit, they'll just have to put up with it.

southeastastra Tue 16-Jun-09 19:47:19

my boss used to ring at 9 at night and about 7 in the morning until i got a work phone. me ignoring it got the message through eventually.

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:50:44

legacy She is in her 50's, as grown up children. Yes she does work late, as she has just gone onto flexi working arrangements as she looks after an elderly relative, so has one day off a week and works additional hours to make it up.

She does know though how important this family time is. I had a home visit a few weeks ago and made it 5pm for this reason - she needed late as possible as its on her way home and had suggested 6pm and I said this was too late to meet. She did not arrive until 5:55pm due to 'a crisis at work' and called me from round the corner saying she was on her way. I told her then, it was too late as DD was about to have tea, and she said then 'yes I think we should do it tomorrow as I don't want to interrupt your family time'. And we did it at 5pm the following day (she was still late!).

I as a bit annoyed with DH, but to be fair, most people who phone are for him and he just says, I will call you back (or risk a serious mouthful from me!)

giraffesCantRunA10k Tue 16-Jun-09 19:52:13

This is why I screen my calls wink

PavlovtheForgetfulCat Tue 16-Jun-09 19:56:40

I would screen, but DH just answers. He hates leaving the phone to ring. He just cannot bear it. I think it does have a little to do with his elderly mother being in USA, but it says 'international call' when its from USA, he just does not think to look.

OrmIrian Tue 16-Jun-09 19:59:36

It is rude and inconsiderate.Not an emergency at all. YANB at all U!

tassisssss Tue 16-Jun-09 20:00:23


we generally don't pick up between 5pm and 7pm...we let the answer machine get it. we do also have caller display so unashamedly screen calls.

i equally don't like being called after 10pm

OrmIrian Tue 16-Jun-09 20:03:27

The favourite time to be called from work in this house is about 8.30 on SUnday am. Now if it's a big problem I don't mind but it never is - just people who can't read f*ing instructions and need reassurance! I am not a helpdesk angry So I make sure I go for a good long run on Sunday...

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