Taking sick leave


What are peoples approaches to taking sick leave as a result of this b****r?

I work in a large organisation (I’m sure they have all the right policies and everything) and haven’t made anyone aware of my problems, but some times I just feel too fatigued, too confused by multiple info, too busy thinking I can’t feel my feet and legs properly etc… to work at 100%. But 'cos it’s not visible and I’ve not come out about it and I can still work at maybe 70% I just grin and bear it.

I could really do with a few days off every now and again just to get my s**t together sometimes.

Anyone else out there in this dilemma, or resolved it?

Mr S

I think if you want them to be understanding, you have to tell them! If they’re a large, reputable company, they should then be able to swing into action with stuff they can do to help you like workplace modifications, working from home on bad days, going part time etc etc. I believe that time off sick for anything MS related is also covered under the DDA so they can’t penalise you for it - but I would assume you have to let them know to be protected.

Also, getting an occupational therapist in to assess what you can and cannot do.

Hi, well its obvious you cant keep going at this rate, or you`ll end up burnt out hun.

I think you will have to speak to your line manager or HR. If they are aware of your condition, then hopefully they will be amenable to you taking time off, when youre not coping as well as youd like to.

Look after yourself.

luv Pollx

I agree with others that you need to tell them. Your MS is starting to interfere with your performance at work, and that isn’t going to go away. It has not been the right time for you to tell them until now, and that is fine, but perhaps the time has come?

MS does not give a person a get out of jail free card as regards attendance, by the way, contrary to popular opinion. But the law does oblige the employer to make reasonable adjustments to help you to stay in employment, so that allows you to make a case for, for instance, adjusting or even (if the time comes that you are not coping with full time) reducing your working hours by changing the terms of your contract. ‘Reasonable adjustments’ are not defined in law, but a large company is generally expected to be prepared to go to more trouble and expense than is a small one.

I hope you are pleasantly surprised to find how receptive they are to your thoughts on how they might help.


Sorry, I didn’t mean to imply you could just go off sick at will any time you like without any kind of ramifications! What I should have said is that there are usually capability and/or long term absence procedures in place to follow before they can think about letting you go which go hand in hand really with the reasonable adjustments Alison mentioned. Let’s face it, most companies are terrified of being sued particularly in relation to disabilities and maternity so they have to play it by book (generally)

Thanks everyone. I guess I’m just trying to put off the point when people start to treat me differently :frowning:

You are all right though, and it’s going to come when I do have to take some employer support.

Mr S

Yes, Mr Sensible…a sensible thought there!


No one treats me differently - in fact, everyone says they forget I have it (until I go off sick as it’s not visible and I rarely talk about it because I just don’t feel the need) and that’s exactly the way I want it. I’ll talk about it if someone asks but I just don’t want to go on and on and on about it as people have their own crap to deal with - I get the impression you’re probably the same. I’m sure you’re colleagues will be really supportive - honestly, I think they’ll surprise you :slight_smile:

Great response Tweacle!


I ignored fatigue and even mild relapses but it has caught up with me and really I wish I’d slowed down sooner. I have had a lot of time off this year now due to a relapse I just couldn’t ignore and am now having to work reduced hours, but not before I struggled on for ages feeling massively fatigued. More than once I literally broke down at work as it all got too much and they got very stern with me and now won’t let me work more than I am at the moment.

I teach so there is nowhere to hide if I’m not up to it, but am counting down to summer hols now and am going to be returning on 2 days a week.

You need to try to find a balance so you can live as well, I managed work but nothing else for too long and after this year I am more aware of wanting to do things while I still can as I can’t be certain of the longer term.

zedsee you talk so much sense! I had a major relapse early 2012 and was off for 10 months, I’ve been back at work since Feb 13 and have been sort of managing work but nothing else as you said and am very aware that I’m working through fatigue and possible minor relapses and wish my life was more balanced, but to just survive work is taking everything that I’ve got to give! I had to phone in sick though yesterday as I’m relapsing again :frowning: and couldn’t work through this one, I’m on a 5 day metholprenisolone steroid course and signed off work for the rest of this week…my husband is unemployed so it’s impossible for me to reduce my hours, I can’t afford to…got my euro ticket on for tonight!!! Jools X