Returning to work


I have just had the worst relapse ever but am now able to walk and drive so have returned to work. This is my first full week back at the office (I have done a couple of 3 day weeks previously) and I am finding it incredibly hard. I work in IT support and this week has been really busy.

I am making silly mistakes and just not thinking straight but all my employer sees is me back at my desk. He has no appreciation for what I have just experienced and just doesn’t seem to care that I am struggling.

I don’t know what to do. If I admit that my health is still not good, it’s conceding defeat as far as I can see but I need to let him know that coming down on me like a tonne of bricks is not helpful.

Has anyone else been in this situation and if so, did you manage to resolve it ?

Any tips will be appreciated, because at the moment I really want to tell them where they can stick their job ! And I can’t afford to do that…



Hello Karen.

You are in a precarious yet familiar position. I was worried for years about telling my employers but I had to in the end. When a new boss came in she homed in on my disability with a mixture of support and demand. It wasn’t helpful in a pressure cooker of a job. Fortunately my profession had a network of support and I was able to retire with a good pension. I think you will do well to do some research into this. Don’t worry about conceding defeat. It’s not. You are just accepting reality. We have to do that as there is no point in fighting the beast.

I still had to fight through feelings of inadequacy and failure but this was compensated by the release of pressure. It was the best thing I’ve ever done. I’m now on the other side, all relaxed and sometimes bored!

Best wishes, steve.



boring is a bit exciting because it means you don’t have to take part in the rat race.

karen - have you had support from access to work?

are you in a union?

good luck

carole x

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for the first time ever, I had to take time off sick earlier this year. I thought I would be out for a couple of weeks. Turned out to be 6 months! Been back a month now, doing 3 days a week. Tired, tired, very tired. I work in the finance industry so thankfully the job itself is not physically demanding. I’m going to persevere for a while yet and hope that the fatigue improves.


Thank you Derek! I have only been away from work for 2 weeks then worked from home but this week was my first back in the office full time. I’ve felt exhausted by 3pm every day and then I’ve had a 40 min drive home to a husband wanting dinner cooked!

All of which is not normally a problem but I am finding it so tiring. Having my boss rant at me because I’m struggling to concentrate has not helped either but he seems to not appreciate that only 5 weeks ago I could barely move!

I don’t want to play the MS card because I want to be 100% back to normal but I have to concede that I am not. Just don’t know how to tell him!

Do you have any access to Occupational Health? They can advise your employer of necessary adjustments they need to make to keep you in work. I think you can self refer but may need to speak to your boss.

Also, your husband needs to start learning to cook and have a meal waiting for you. He must be aware how unwell your relapse made you and really needs to stop expecting you to cook for him after a long day and drive.

Hope things improve for you.

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