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Returning To Work

after being off on disability  for over a year, I'm now on a 'return to work plan'

One of the hardest things I've had to do was go back to this office. Its fairly small, under 40 people working there, mostly female and full of gossip.
The first couple days were alright. I was only there a few hours a day and had my manager with me most of the time.
This week My hours increased to 6 hours a day/ 3 times a week, and though it may not seem like much, its really been exhausting. mentally, physically and emotionally.

One of my biggest worries about going back were people's attitudes. There were a few people on disability while I was working full time and my co-workers would talk so much crap about them....the girl i sat next to even said to me one day 'if i ever went on disability i could never face people here again'. Another girl that I had on my facebook made comments when she twisted her ankle how she could "NEVER go on disability'. I deleted her after I read that. 

So now that I'm starting to do more work on my own, its starting to be even worse than before. People still whispering around me. Now most people wont even make eye contact with me let alone say hello.....that is unless my manager is around. Girls I used to go on lunch with have now turned against me since I "have been ignoring them for the past year".

It really breaks my heart. I have a major depression and pretty bad anxiety with panic attacks. It's hard for me to talk about what's been going on to people who are so completely ignorant. They think you can just magically be happy.....they really have no idea. 

I've been trying really hard not to let them get to me, but today I was pretty close to breaking down at work. My ex-best-work friend went around to everyone in our department - except me - and passed out christmas cards and homemade treats (since shes going away for several weeks & will be missing the holiday seasons). Every single person, except for me.......
I still can't get over that she is telling people that I have been ignoring her......when I try to say hello and she is polite enough to say hi and then is quick to walk away from me. 

One guy from IT that I've actually had a conversation with told me that nobody thought that i was going to come back.

they even hired another girl to take my position while I was gone......not a temp but a full on hire.

I don't know if i can do this.
sweetsie sweetsie 26-30, F 2 Responses Dec 1, 2011

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I am so sorry to hear about how you are being treated. Some people really lack any sense of compassion. Have you spoken to your manager about the problem? I know that may not help, but I think it's worth looking into.



The only other solution, I'm afraid is to seek employment elsewhere.



I truly wish that things go better for you and If you need a sympathetic ear, I'm always willing to listen.

Thank you for your kind words.
I've been looking a little bit for employment elsewhere, even had an interview but nothing has come through yet. Trying to get into a field more related to what I had gone to school for is a little challenging and intimidating as I only have office / customer service work experience =/
But I do have a bit of good news, the one that went out of her way to make my life miserable has quit! Yesterday was her last day! Looking forward to a fresh start on Monday =D

That is fantastic! I hope it makes a world of difference for you. I've been in a hostile work environment and know how bad it can be.

Good Luck next week!

I completely sympathize with you. I have just returned to work after surgery for a work place incident. One girl whom I had as an employee had started bagging me from her first month with the company, obviously she had been promised my position by the area manager, if only they could get rid of me. The first slap in my face was being excluded from the huge company party for all store managers to attend for the opening of our new showroom. Out of 70 Managers I was the only one not invited. Our area manager whom had a dislike for me has been a driving force by making claims that she is receiving complaints about me, but will not be forthcoming with any evidence. Lies and undermining from this particular staff member continued until my accident at work. They employed another girl to fill my management role. I work in retail in a beach side resort town with small minded women with not much happening in their lives except to come to their low paid jobs and gossip. The troublesome employee has allied with these other women and has had 5 months of uninterrupted lies and gossip. Since I have returned to a 3 day RTW. planned week, the girl our company employed to fill my position (permanently) has been questioned unmercifully by the women within the shopping *****. They have taken it upon themselves to alienate me and ostracize me at every turn. They peer in the window like school children, even stooping to taking photos of me and threatening to send them to my wok cover insurer. They have even had bogus complaints made about me and as I suspected, the area manager is behind it 100%. because they thought I would not return to work or that they could sack me. Unfortunately they have contravened the work place act and my job had to be re-instated, which has pissed them off. I was accused today, by the area manager of throwing a customer out of the shop on my third shift, but when I insisted calling in the new manager, as we had worked the entire day together, then her story became more vague and said that she would have to investigate the matter further by calling the customer. I know it is B.S. as there was never any such incident because her details were too specific to have slipped my mind. Even so, I was not allowed to vindicate myself by having the other Manager speak on my behalf.

That's terrible! I'm sorry that you have to go through all that. I'm trying really hard to ignore all the gossiping and catty-ness and focus on my work.....but its really hard to do when its surrounding you. I'm not allowed to use my ipod while training (my job is mostly data entry), so i'm forced to hear it. Its already hard enough to concentrate while on my meds =S
I'm not sure of the labour laws where you live, but my doctor has been assuring me that they can't legally do anything to get rid of me.......but whats to stop them making my life hell so i want to quit?
I hope things get better for you.