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Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:55 pm
by f-p
I'm going to try and keep this pretty brief as a lot of you will already know my story...

I've recently started seeing someone for therapy regarding my depression and mental health issues. Unfortunately, they can't offer me any appointments outside working hours.

I'm a bit stuck now for what to do for the best as I really didn't want to bring my problems up at work for a variety of reason. Also, up to now, I have an unblemished attendance record, and I would ideally like to keep it that as I wouldn’t want to be marked down if/when the next lot of redundancies comes around.

I am happy to use my annual leave for the purpose, but we can only take either full days or half days as standard, Ideally, I could just do with a couple of hours off really. Also, using my annual leave would mean that I could only go to therapy once every two weeks maximum, and would soon eat in to my entitlement not leaving much for holidays, weekends away etc! I have thought about asking if I can quarter the days but that would have to be done with some explanation as to why before it was even considered!

So basically, I only see three options:
1) Lie through my teeth about why I need the time off regular (I’m a rubbish liar and can’t think of a believable excuse anyway)
2) Tell my boss about what’s going on with me and risk it as a black mark/discrimination (I know they shouldn’t do that but…)
3) Don’t carry on with the counseling :(

Can anybody offer me any advice on the best course of action?
Or give me some guides as to my rights as an employee?

I do think my immediate supervisor would be quite understanding, but he would have to take it higher up to sanction the abnormal use of annual leave days!

Re: Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:19 pm
by rufio89
Hi f-p,

It's a tricky one. I ended up not going to the counselling I was offered because I'd just started a new job and I didnt feel able to ask for that time off, but as you're an established member of staff, I would think the best course of action to be talking to your line manager about what your options are. Depression is a very common problem and it's a health problem as much as anything else is! I would expect your company would want to be responsible and give certain allowances for counselling, although you would probably have to make the time up/take it as leave. It's better you take time off for counselling a couple of hours a week than you end getting yourself signed off because youre too depressed to work!

Would it be possible to arrange your appointments for the start/end of the day and work through your lunch or something?

I think you should give the counselling a try at least - you might find it's not for you but you cant know after just one session and as you said in your other post, things were such a blur for you that you'll need time to adjust.

I really think you're going to ask your mananger. You could always just bring it up and ask him what the possibilities are and ask him not to take it further until you've had a chance to consider it?

Let us know how it goes, and good luck.

Re: Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 3:04 pm
by Bel Bel
You could say you need medical treatment and don't really want to go into detail but it's not something which will affect your work.
Ask if you can take off the hours and work in lieu late,early or through your lunch as necessary to make up time.
Or add the hours taken until the make a full day and take that off.

Please get the conselling
If necessary tell your line manager but stress that it is in confidence

Re: Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:30 pm
by f-p
Well, I have had to tell my line manager at work, but luckily for me he has been really quite understanding and is treating it in strict confidence.

First I did tell him that I was going to be needing the time off and I was willing to make the time up, but I would prefer not to go into detial if it could be avoided. He spoke to his superior and came back with pretty much what I expected!

'I had to tell either my line manager or HR what the time was needed for but it didn't have to go any further that the one person I told and time off could be sanctioned and worked out from there'

I chose to tell the line manager as I have a pretty good working relationship with him where as I don't really know the HR department so much, and the one person I do know slightly is not somebody I would trust to keep things to herself.

I didn't have to go into any detail, just that I was having treatment for depression. All in all he's been pretty ace about it all! And it turns out that his dad suffers from depression and his daughter is a psychiactric nurse so at least he has some understanding lol.

He will have to speak to the HR department about the time off but doesn't have to tell them why... And I trust him 100%

He was quite surprised to learn that I was depressed, said he would never have guessed.... Guess I've perfected my public face then! :)

Thank-you for your continued advice and support

Re: Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 11:07 pm
by snail
Aw, what a great result. So you've improved your relationship with your line manager, as well as learning that you're coping, to the outside world at least, much better than you thought. If you'd never gone through this you never would have found out those things.

Re: Time of work for therapy

PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 9:13 am
by rufio89
That's great that he's been so understanding f-p!

Have you had any more sessions yet?