The week from hell

This has been a week from hell, hence my absence from the blogosphere. Apologies to all of you for not replying to your comments in my previous post – I truly appreciate them, but haven’t been in the space to think about anything this week. Except one thing.

Things at work have come to a big pointy head with my boss (yes, that boss). To cut a long story short, he effectively offered me a demotion unless I could guarantee I would not get sick or take any more sick leave. (WHAT THE…? Yes, I KNOW…)

He said that the work I’ve been doing is good, but I get sick a lot and can’t attend work, which has a negative impact on him and people in my team. He said he doesn’t think I’m malingering, and understands I’m dealing with multiple health issues, none of which he suspects are helped by the stress of the work environment. He did question my commitment to the job – actually to the “game” that comes with the job – but to his credit he apologised for making me feel devalued and deskilled.

I’m torn between transferring to another area, which could be a good outcome for me (though not at a lower salary), and fighting this out. I need to investigate this properly but my initial reading of our anti-discrimination laws suggests it’s illegal for him to demote me like this.

My therapist thinks I should: (a) take this bull by the horns and wrestle his illegal a$$ to the ground, or (b) take a leave of absence and start working for myself, which I think is what I want to do in the longer term but really don’t feel ready for yet, or (c) take a job in another area while I continue to look for something else. Who knows?

I have ridden the full gamut of emotions this week, from hysteria to anger to … I don’t really know what. I am completely exhausted and totally confused.


10 thoughts on “The week from hell

  1. I like A but can see how that is just prolonging this unhealthy relationship so I vote for C instead (can you tell I watch too many reality competition shows???)

    I am so sorry you are going through this during the holidays and on the tail end of a tough vacation. I’ve found that when I am unwilling to make a necessary move the universe forces my hand, make the best choice for YOU in the PRESENT.
    Hugs & Strength

  2. Wow — that’s just … horrible. I would also say that if you can do option C comfortably, that’s probably the best thing until you are ready to be self-employed. I like the idea of nailing the bastard to the wall, but that might take more energy than you have right now.

    On the other hand, as awful as this is, if it provides a catalyst to get away from this guy and his toxic manipulations, it might be a good thing in the long run.

    Keep us posted. xo

  3. (((Kerro)))

    I’m so sorry this is happening. It does fly in the face of nearly any employment contract that I know of, so option A is very valid… BUT, if you win with option A the work environment will be forever changed, so do you want that? Or, will fighting it give you enough time to find something else?

    Option B is the scary one which is a good option if you’re feeling strong enough to do it…

    Option C is a good one in that the move could be what brings back the spark in to work for you. You could move to a more positive environment. Is there a team at your workplace that you know are extremely functional and positive? Can you move there?

    We’re here is there is anything we can do to help.

    Take care,

  4. Oh, your boss is definitely an a$$. I think what he said about you being sick is illegal, or unethical or what ever. You could file against him. I did that once and the “board” was so stunned, they gave me what I asked for because they knew the Pres was wrong. It is very stressful. I hope you find a decision that is comfortable for you as you have support here with what ever you choose.

  5. ((Kerro)) – This really sucks. What an awful and manipulative person you boss is! I hope everything works out ok with whatever option you go with, and I’m glad that you’ve got your T to help you through this. It sounds like whatever way you go will provide an end to this chapter with this particular person and I hope that opens some space for good people to come into your life. Best wishes.

  6. Hi Kerro,

    I’m so sorry dear. He really is a total a–. Yeah this sounds like a good lawsuit. It sounds as though making any of the three choices still leaves you the option of a lawsuit. I would keep that in the back of your mind. This guy is such scum. I’m sorry dear. I believe that you will triumph over his worthless a–.

    Good and healing thoughts to you.


  7. Thank you all so very much for your kind words and your support. I cherish both more than you know.

    I’m still confused as anything about this, but trying to just sit with it, and talk to my T when I can. I’ll be sure to keep you all informed.

    Safe hugs to you all.

  8. Kerro this really is horrid stuff! Laws in each country are different but from my previous experience in HR I’d say that even IF he had a case he’d have to go through a process with you and telling you you’ll be demoted if you don’t stop having time off sick is just NOT it!

    At the end of the day, only you can decide how to respond to this but please give yourself time to mull it over and decide what is best FOR YOU!

    He has truly shown himself in all his true colours. What stuck out for me from your post was how you interpreted some of what he had done positively “to his credit” etc.

    He values your work because you do good work – not for any altruistic motive on his part.

    Whatever you do with this, we’re here and at the Theraposse to help – just give yourself the time you need to do what’s best FOR YOU!


  9. I’m sorry this is happening. I don’t feel like I should give you advice one way or the other. I just want to tell you that I can empathize with the place you are at.

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