Can someone please advise me with regards to work and ongoing anxiety?(7 Posts)
I have been off work for 8 weeks with stress and anxiety. This is mostly work related, but seems to have come to a head recently as a result of some other stuff that's been going on too.
I've worked for my company for over 8 years and I think I'm quite a valued employee.
Anyway.... My line manager phoned me the other day. The conversation was bizarre to say the least, and I'm really unsure how to deal with it.
Whilst we were talking, under the guise of her calling to see how I was, she asked me if the doctor had prescribed me any medication, and if so, what it is. Did I have to answer this in a phone call? I'm afraid to say that I did, because it was unexpected, and I sort of blurted it out. Is this not something that she should speak to HR about? I know from working for her for all this time that she gossips about people's problems and I would put money on her having told people at work, and I'm mortified.
Also, she issued a thinly veiled threat that I would be on half pay before long if I didn't come back soon she said that she couldn't say for sure, but that it might happen if I carried on being off, iyswim.
This has all made me feel even more anxious and panicky about going back to a week on Monday. I really don't know what to do. I don't feel ready to go back, but I really feel like everyone will be talking about me... Does anyone have any advice please?
Well you didn't need to tell her about your medication, no, but it sounds as though I'm the moment you got flustered and answered your boss's question understandably. She should have asked in a way that made it clear you were not under any obligation to respond, and actually it's a bit weird to want to know what the medication is anyway.
8 weeks full pay is very generous, so telling you that you may go on to half pay is no problem in itself unless your contract or policy says you should get more, does it?
I think it is always fair that a manager warns people of half pay, you might be able to claim benefits if you go to half, so it gives you time to start the ball rolling. full sick pay is mostly rolling, so sick pay is rarely a perfect X weeks, you might be a few days down from cold and the like.
I have to say asking you about medications is a bit odd! I think there might be a bit of google search going on here, and medications are not that simple, as in you take X so that means you have Y illness, for all you know you have been given beta blockers for your anxiety which point on the google search to heart problems, it is a total waste of time for the lay person to ask that question.
Of course the other possibility is that she has a little bit of medical knowledge, or knowledge of the condition. Just trying to think of motives for asking, as it is a big strange. There would be no point me asking that question (not that I would), because if someone told me my face would look like this as it would mean nothing to me at all.
I might consider asking whether a doctor had prescribed anything and if so, was it helping, but wouldn't ask what it was.
Sorry it's taking me ages to reply - I keep having to nc, and it's a faff!
Thanks for all your advice flowery, I completely understand about the half pay, I just felt like it was held over me as if it were a bit of a bribe - kind of an incentive to come back to work so that I get full pay, because she thinks I'm swinging the lead... If that makes sense. Maybe I'm paranoid.
The whole call was strange. I've applied for voluntary redundancy in the last couple of weeks, and am waiting to hear the outcome. On this call, she also asked me if I knew who else from our dept had applied, and told me that she and some other managers had applied for it. The whole thing just came across as highly unprofessional. I hate the idea of my professional reputation being in her hands because I know what a gossip she is.
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