Crohn's Disease Forum » General IBD Discussion » Off work sick with flare

11-06-2018, 12:45 AM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2017
Off work sick with flare

Hello everyone

I was allocated a new boss in work who decided I wasnít really ill and decided to criticise my work frequently. I ended up going home in tears one day because of how she spoke to me and the pressure she was putting me under. 2 weeks later the worst flare started for me and I ended up in hospital on steroids/hydrocortisone etc and could not eat without severe pain.

My boss has been quite harsh with me I feel since being off sick, texting me to say my sick note/hospital notes had expired when they hadnít, contacting me every week (which is ok, but with discretion and given the Length of my notes unnecessary) made me attend occupational health for a meeting and is forcing another meeting this week even though my note expires next week and I have complied with everything else so far.

My G.P gave me a line for 6 weeks no problem (not that I specified the duration) I asked her if she thought it was excessive and she said no, and that I would probably need more time to get the medication settled and my health stable again. She was of the opinion that my line manager putting pressure on me to be back was counter productive. At that stage I was awaiting funding for infliximab as I had lost response to Humira.

I had been getting a difficult time from higher management before I went off sick because I was granted my application to go part time by HR even though local management were against it. I canít help but feel this is partially why my manager is being so mean to me.

Unfortunately yesterday when I was out browsing some shops (on one free day without appointments) I ran into my line manager who commented that clearly being off work was agreeing with me, and that she would she me on Friday for our meeting. I was quite upset at this as Iím still not well and very nervous for my meeting with her on Friday.

As it stands I have my second infusion next Tuesday, and so far havenít noticed much improvement, and have to restart 6mp this week even though I didnít tolerate it very well last year (constant infections) but now feel obliged to return to work regardless.

I know to a certain extent it doesnít look great that Iíve been off work since August with this flare but it has been out of my control. Sorry for the long post and Iíd appreciate any feedback.
11-07-2018, 04:15 AM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2017
Just a further update: my manager texted me again the next day saying that it was good I was feeling up to getting out of the house and feeling better.

Luckily last week I had already made arrangements to meet with her this week anyway either on Tuesday or Friday as she said higher management were pushing the issue, but Iím not convinced it isnít just her following things through to the latter.

I was told yesterday that i have to start mercaptopurine again along with an antibiotic as I am still on steroids and now infliximab. Have i been off too long? Am I being inconsiderate to my employer? I canít sleep knowing this meeting is happening on Friday and my manager is always looking for a way to put me down...
11-08-2018, 12:48 PM   #3
Senior Member
NuttyGuts's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: McMinnville, Oregon

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Hi Cronie1,
It sounds like you need to find a way to reduce the stress your job is causing you. Do you do meditation or mindfulness exercises at all? I find them helpful when I feel like I am backed into a corner. Although I am retired now, I can remember asking my boss to go home early one day because I felt so bad. I had constant D, belly pain and a fever. I barely made it home, and probably should not have driven. When I returned to work, I heard some snarky comments from a fellow worker about how, if it was her, she would just take loperamide and keep right on working. And that was before I was even diagnosed or knew what was going on. I hope that you can find a way to communicate to your employer what you have to deal with, without making your employer see you as a liability.
Best wishes!
11-08-2018, 04:47 PM   #4
Join Date: Apr 2017
Hi nuttyguts. Thanks for your response. I guess I just find life difficult enough t9 deal with without my managers snide comments about my health. I have tried meditation but find it only works sometimes. I do my best. Hopefully the meeting wonít be as bad tomorrow as I envision it could be, time will tell.
11-08-2018, 06:16 PM   #5
Senior Member
Nym's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia
What a horrid boss! I would not be allowing any boss of mine to text me anything. Society is becomming so cut, cold and dry.

Try: Meditation Sleep Music ➤ Emotional & Physical Healing | Delta Sleep Solfeggio 528Hz DNA Healing

Put it on and go to sleep. Use it often
11-10-2018, 12:15 AM   #6
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Baltimore, Maryland

My Support Groups:
There are a lot of people in leadership positions who don't need to be there. Your supervisor sounds like one of them. No matter how evil she acts, don't give her the satisfaction of letting her see that she upsets you, as toxic managers feed on that.

If your paperwork has "expired", get new papers. Some Einsteins in management don't seem to understand that Crohn's is a lifelong affliction. I always make sure my medical documentation is up to date just so I'm not giving them any ammunition. Also, be careful about going other places if you are off work because of appointments. It seems like it's ok if the managers are out goofing off, but if you are seen making a stop somewhere that's not a doctor's office, hospital, or pharmacy, those kind of people will see you as "cured" when you obviously aren't.

Finally, does this person have a supervisor? Have you tried talking to them? Do you have an Equal Employment Opportunity office and if so, have you spoken to them about this manager? If she sends you any inappropriate messages, keep them all and build a file. That way you have evidence. If this "lady" values her career and upward mobility, it would behoove her to not bully someone with a chronic illness.

Keep your head up and stay strong! This wonderful disease causes enough pain and suffering without idiots who try to complicate your life with unnecessary drama. Focus on getting through the flare and getting yourself to where you can function again.
11-10-2018, 07:25 AM   #7
Join Date: Apr 2017
Hi Nym, thanks for the link, Iíll be sure to give it a try as my sleeping pattern is very erratic at the moment which probably isnít helping my anxiety.

Mountaineer, Iím hoping that when I get back into work to be able to ask to do other work (not that I particularly want to) but just as a reason to get away from her. She is quite bitter as she once had a bad experience with her manager when she was off with stress and I canít help but feel sheís passing that experience onto me.

The meeting was not great for my crohns/anxiety to be honest and kinda went as expected. Thereís times I think she is trying to understand (she asked Ďis it like IBS?) and also admitted she has no clue what it would be like with a chronic illness. But there was still a tone of threat with some things she was saying, like Ďif this does go to a panel Iím sure youíll have medical records to prove it...í, I believe the decision is hers as to whether or not I get a warning.

Bizarrely though she encouraged me to keep getting sick lines from my doctor as I may as well make sure I was fully better before returning to work (prior to going off sick, she was struggling to keep up with my files, which Ďcouldí contribute to this).

She mentioned about a previous colleague using sick instead of annual leave allowance every year which I admit my absence Ďcouldí look like as prior to going off sick I had booked some leave (3 days) for the end of November but I donít know at this stage if Iíll be back in work by then, and it was provisionally approved in August with no problem.

However, she mentioned that when she was off her manager contacted her and asked for a letter from her gp for the time she had booked as she was going on holiday and if she could not provide it they would have to go down the disciplinary route.

I know she is getting pressure from one of her senior managers about the speed she works (sheís quite slow, always on her phone etc) and he actually happens to have crohns, so previously he was quite understanding to me but since I got my part time approved he has been quite hard on me I feel. Not many people even in management know he has crohns and I think he feels I should just be getting on with it as he is. Nevertheless, I think Iíll speak to him upon my return about her attitude towards me and possibly doing other work. Unfortunately bullying is rife in our organisation no matter what the status of the target is and my manager is actually the union rep which doesnít help my situation either.

Sorry for the long post again, itís a complicated matter and thanks for the advice, Iím doing my best to focus on my health.

Last edited by Cronie1; 11-10-2018 at 07:41 AM.

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