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Presenteeism, they call it.  Going to work to be "present" when by all rights you should be home in bed.  I was running a 101F fever last night, but it was down to 99F this morning, so I trudged in dutifully to work.

I have sick days I could use.  But I only have 10 for the whole year, and I wanted to ensure I saved enough for doctor's visits and such later on.  I've already blown a day and a half and it's only February.

It's not just the sick days, though.  I feel obligated to be here.  We have a project go live this afternoon, and I'm supposed to be working on a training presentation for the team we did the project for, which I will need to actually use for training in the next few days.  

I'm not throwing up, although I did have terrible stomach cramps yesterday afternoon and I've been battling nausea since yesterday morning.   I've been washing my hands obsessively.  I have a private office and I am going to avoid the public spaces here as much as I can.  

Thing is, with my fever and the massive headache, I don't know how productive I will be.

Why do companies limit paid sick time?  I guess I can understand you want to prevent someone from malingering, but 10 days isn't enough if someone becomes seriously ill.  (If I remember right, if you are sick beyond two weeks at a time, they'll put you on short term disability at reduced pay.)  

I am lucky in that I have the option of working from home, or I would if we were not in the middle of the final phases of the project, when I need to be in the office.

I'm going to keep taking my temperature throughout the day.  If I break 102F at any point, I'm heading to the doctor.

Until then, I'll keep washing my hands and staying the heck away from everyone else.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (5+ / 0-)

    The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

    by catwho on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 06:05:59 AM PST

  •  Stay home. give your fellow employees a break (6+ / 0-)

    They give you 10 paid sick days a year but you don't want to use them when you're sick?
    And the idea you may be infecting your fellow employees?  That's not enough to take a sick day?
    You ask a question but you don't give an answer---why DO you go to work when sick if youre given paid sick days?

    Happy just to be alive

    by exlrrp on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 06:15:45 AM PST

    •  Because we have a project go live today (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      exlrrp, chimene

      A project we've been working on for six months. Six months!  I'm needed to test and verify everything is working.

      Any other day and I'd be home.   Thankfully, I have a private office and people rarely visit me here.

      I will be staying away from the coworker who has triplets.

      The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

      by catwho on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 06:38:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Because they need the money. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chimene

    Not me - I go to work when I am sick because I work to help my friend out in the little business he started recently. Since it isn't yet turning a profit, he has to keep his "day job" to pay the bills, and I cover for him. If I don't show up, there is no one to open the doors.

    I'm not doing it for the money, but my situation is unusual. Most people show up for work because they need the money, plain and simple.

  •  In EMS you always seem sick (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho

    Since we end up in a confined space with sick people through out the shift (12 to 18 hours a day is standard), we always feel like gunk.

    But like good co-dependents in an abusive relationship, if you call off sick peer pressure comes in. "slacker, lazy, wimp" come in to the conversation.  No one wants to be seen as that guy who called off and stuck his co-workers with mandatory OT on top of the normal shift. (often at the las min)

    We do a lot of self treatment and know that our calling off sick is going to screw over our buddies, who likely feel as bad as you do.  So you go in for another shift of abuse from the patients, partners, and management.

    Stupid question hour starts now and ends in five minutes.

    by DrillSgtK on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 07:29:34 AM PST

  •  I go to work because I have NO (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Deep Texan

    sick leave.
    You are going to work because you want to. I don't have a lot of sympathy. Except for your co-workers, especially the ones with kids.
    I get that you have a project. If you are so important to it, couldn't it have been postponed for a day or 2 until you were well?

    Only thing more infuriating than an ignorant man is one who tries to make others ignorant for his own gain. Crashing Vor

    by emmasnacker on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 07:33:32 AM PST

  •  Unpaid slacker leave (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho

    I never got paid sick leave, but I used to miss about 20 days of work per year just from having colds, even more if I got the flu.  That was just one reason among many why I used to save my money, so I would not have to worry about the lost wages.

    As far as having a special project goes, I never had one of those.  As much as possible, I always tried to make myself dispensable.  That way, when I didn’t show up for work, others could fill in.  Being dispensable meant my boss could fire me whenever he wanted, but I could quit whenever I wanted, so that made us even.

    In any event, when I got sick, I didn’t care if it meant the end of Western civilization, I wasn’t going it.

  •  My son suffers with migraine headaches (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho

    He gets them in clusters. He has he a migraine every day for over two weeks.  He has seen his doctor and they gave him some meds, but he can't work while taking them. He takes the med at night but if he wake up with a migraine he needs to take more.  His boss has been pretty cool but they have a business to run and need him.  

    We are helping him with some alternative care, chiropractic, naturopathic, etc hope we can get him well soon.

    He does not have sick days so he is out of pocket and that is scary.

    My Brothers Keeper

    by Reetz on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 07:45:27 AM PST

  •  I once worked 75 hours in one week because... (6+ / 0-)

    I was the Assistant Manager, the Manager was on vacation, and nearly everyone else had the flu.  My last "shift" was a straight 49-and-a half hours because everyone who was supposed to relieve me called in sick.

    The very day the Manager returned I went straight to the ER with pneumonia.

    Why do this?  It was a gas station/convenience store, and if I closed the store I'd have been fired.

    For us working poor, it's mostly NOT a choice.

  •  thankfully i can do my job over VPN (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho, chimene

    my company sent out an email, telling us to stay home when we are sick. with so many deaths from the flu this year, i understand the freak out.

    -You want to change the system, run for office.

    by Deep Texan on Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 08:21:44 AM PST

  •  Don't have sick leave currently (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho

    I'm a consultant, no work, no pay, but even when I did I rarely took it. If I thought I was contagious though I'd usually stay home.

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