Last reply 12 months ago
Return to work shock


I posted a little while ago about dizziness and facial numbness etc and I have since been diagnosed with gaze evoked nystagmus. This was my second relapse since Christmas so I have been off of work since then. Ive improved a little and went back to work last week. I had a back to work interview and my manager ‘suggested’ I think about not working there anymore, he can see me struggling and ‘when is enough, enough’. He is very clever with how he puts it in a caring way and I can see how the work suffers when I’m not there but I feel a bit pressured and shocked so I didn’t give much response. I’ve had lots of relapses over the years so I’ve had time off and they have made reasonable adjustments for me but all I really need is time to get over this relapse. My vision is my left eye isn’t great but I’m hoping it will get better. I don’t feel like I can make a decision to leave just yet. Anyone had anything similar?

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1 year ago

@sugaplum , you are wise to be wary about your Manager’s motives. He has no right to suggest that you may want to leave.

The best way forward is to confide in your GP and get signed off indefinitely, whilst you look at your options.

It would be advisable to seek assistance from the Citizens Advice Bureau, or your union, if you are a member.

But, don’t let these matters stress you out. This will only make your MS play up even more.

I hope this helps.

1 year ago

Thank you @stumbler that is good advice and I will see if I can talk to my GP on Monday. I am very wary indeed of my manager and I have been upset about it ever since which as you say does not help my MS. I will seek advice and the irony is that I work for the NHS! Caring, I think not 🤨

1 year ago

Hello @sugaplum, sorry you are going through this. You could do something to add to your defence of position, in emailing your manager. It could say something like ‘thanks for the recent meeting at which you discussed your return to work and how reasonable adjustments can achieve this’. This makes it clear that you have no intention to leave work and, most importantly, is in writing which gives legal clout. Just a suggestion! X

1 year ago

Hi @vixen what a good idea I hadn’t thought of emailing him i wasnt expecting such a difficult frank conversation and I wasnt sure what to do next 😢 I reduced my hours last year to 22.5 and they have given me two computer screens which is helping so I think he feels he has done all he can to help me and I’m still taking time off sick so the next step is for me to think about leaving or redeployment to a less stressful role. After the relapses I have just had I don’t feel I’m in the right head space to make those decisions and to think about the financial and emotional implications etc it’s all a bit too much and ultimately i like my job. Thank you for your reply and good advice 😀 xx

1 year ago

I haven’t had similar but I was fired 24 years ago because of an ms relapse. I wanted both financially and emotionally to go back to work, but in those days if you told the truth you didn’t get the interview, if you didn’t say anything and had a relapse 6 months later you got fired again for ‘witholding relevant information’! Thank god things have changed, as Vixen has said the email is a good idea, but we should’t need a defensive position, this is the 21 st century for goodness sake. Keep up the chin, keep fighting (though we shouldn’t have to ) as Stumbler has suggested, get signed off and sit back and consider your options, whatever is best for YOU. Don’t let them win, you have a lot of support and I have no doubt there’s an employment lawyer lurking in our community somewhere if ever the need arises😍 Jill

1 year ago

Hi there

First of all are you in a union? If your are not try to ask work colleagues what one to join at your NHS place of work. This is what a union is for if the shop stewards are any good (if they aren’t then go to paid officials) they will stop this in its tracks.

Your doctor has said you are fit to work. The NHS has very clear procedures for ill health retirement or redeployment /leaving and for your manager to start discussing without an occupational health assessment even In the most caring way (typical excuse “we are concerned”) is plain wrong.

It is hard to make decisions when we are still recovering from a relapse as we can’t predict the future and we think it might last. The best advice I was given on being diagnosed was don’t give up work. If I made my decisions on what I felt like after my first relapse I might have weakly agreed to being eased out but I instead kept on working and with the help of the union got my rights.

I also refuse to go to occupational health voluntarily but it’s different I think in the NHS. My ex-employers were appalling though. Disability Law Service are great too – MS society pay for an adviser there.

Hope that’s helpful.

1 year ago

Oops sorry sugarplum you’ve said you have been working there for years so you know all about the unions at your place. All the best

12 months ago

@grandma @strictlysoca
Thank you so much for your advice 😃 i can’t tell you how much it helps and I’m going to take it all on board. I had got myself into a spin (literally lol) over it and yes, I absolutely agree, due to my current physical and emotional state since the relapses I could easily have caved in and agreed with my manger that it was time to go. So crafty of him and he should never have had the discussion with me especially when I’m still recovering. Im going to take some time and think it all through and when I’m feeling more like me I will take him on 👊 😂 and stay strong thanks again everyone 🤗

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