Sick leave and working through chemo

Occasional Contributor

Sick leave and working through chemo

Hi everyone, I was wondering if anyone could give me some tips on how to handle this situation. I am currently undergoing chemotherapy but I still work full time with a full timers work load. I have one day off a fortnight to go to chemo, and Im no more than an hour late into the office on a wednesday when chemo is taken off of me two days later. Other than that, thats pretty much it, Im on top of my work and I do not miss deadlines, I still get to work even though i feel like crap. No one says anything and sometimes it annoys me when someone with a cold gets tons of attention and yet I'm sitting there with chemo strapped to me and no one has a word to say or even ask me how Im doing. But thats not my issue. Last week I got into a massive row with my boss, who had told me she forbade me to go to hospital for an appointment. She told me my work had to come first. My appointment was to to attend my regular session at Oncology Mental Health. Im struggling with chemo, I hate it so so so much, and we're working on coping strategies. I don't see this monthly appointment as too much to ask. In the end I had to raise it with HR who told my boss she's not allowed to stop me from going to hospital. I was very upset about the whole incident. Im going tbgrough chemotherapy, as if thats not enough shit in my life. Tonight my uber-professional sister i law told me she thought me asking to be late to the office 2 hours a month for Psych appointments was "pushing my luck" and they could "easily fire you over it" I cannot deal with all this right now. I have enough on my plate. Can anyone help me with my rights at work, or even any tips with doing treatment and working at the same time? Thanks, Rachel
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Super Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

Hi Rachel I cannot be much help other than to empathise with you. What a cow your boss is to have that attitude!! I was a country patient and unable to work, which I doubt I could have continued with work anyway. I take my hat off to you for being able to work!! I would talk to you HR department and see what they have to say. If it was me I would also be talking to bosses higher up the food chain and seeing if you can get something in writing that says they support you in having time off to go to your appointments. You might be suprised and get a whole lot of support given to you and here's hoping that is the case! Julie xo
Occasional Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

Hi Rachael This seems totally unacceptable. Not sure what work you do. But if your in the union you should get in touch even if your not in the union I'm sure they will be helpful. As for your sister in law as its not happening to her and her life has not been disrupted in anyway, she has no idea what your going through and by the sounds of it isn't even trying to understand. Keep your spirits up your doing so well working at all. Take care.
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Super Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

Hi Rachel, I can't believe how unreasonable your boss is being! I don't know what you're going through (my husband had cancer), but I do know that even though I was not the one having chemo, I still found it hard to work full time. I really admire what you're doing. Is there any way that someone from HR can mediate communication between you and your boss? I imagine the atmosphere in your office is quite strained at the moment, and, as you said, this is the last thing you need right now. If your boss can be helped to understand more of your situation (even if she has to be forced into it), she may be more flexible and compassionate in the future. Good luck with everything. love Emily
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Occasional Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

thank you everyone! I've been so depressed about this all weekend, I enjoy my work but being made to feel like asking for time to attend a hospital appointee is asking too much upsets me greatly. There so much on corporate process and protocol, but what it comes down to is a bit of bloody compassion. I don't think I could sleep at night if I was asked to tell a chemotherapy patient that some stupid presentation comes before treatment. And as to my sister in law…don't know about this one yet. Its easy to say ignore these comments, but I think that most would agree that being told what you're doing is wrong by someone who's never been there is patronising in the least. Oh well…chemo to look forward to tomorrow, heh?! 😉
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Occasional Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

thank you everyone! I've been so depressed about this all weekend, I enjoy my work but being made to feel like asking for time to attend a hospital appointee is asking too much upsets me greatly. There so much on corporate process and protocol, but what it comes down to is a bit of bloody compassion. I don't think I could sleep at night if I was asked to tell a chemotherapy patient that some stupid presentation comes before treatment. And as to my sister in law…don't know about this one yet. Its easy to say ignore these comments, but I think that most would agree that being told what you're doing is wrong by someone who's never been there is patronising in the least. Oh well…chemo to look forward to tomorrow, heh?! 😉
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Occasional Contributor

Re: Sick leave and working through chemo

im actually about to go back to work in January after having surgery on cancerous tomuor on brain in april this year. the company has been extremely supportive of me through this tough time. my boss just told me not to come back until YOU think your ready to return. the company wants to work with my ot to work out hours for the week. im sorry to hear that your boss is a c#*t. there is no other way to put it sorry. its unfair to yourself and its not helping your recovery. its a tough situation you find yourself in and I hope great things come to you. youre a real tough nut by the sounds of things. I hope your boss gets what he she deserves.
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