Utterly Dejected and Depressed

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Newswoman, Jan 22, 2003.

  1. Newswoman

    Newswoman New Member

    First of all, thanks to everyone who replied to my post yesterday. I appreciate it. I wish, however, that your suggestions would've solved the problem.

    When I asked some specific questions about during my second review yesterday, my supervisor accused me of not doing my job and not taking the iniative to ask her questions. Both of these things aren't true. I sent her an e-mail yesterday (and in the past) asking her to provide me with the reasonable accommodation (I worded it just like that) to put things in writing because I have mental fog from the fibromyalgia that affects my ability to retain verbal instruction and information. She flat out told me that she doesn't see the need to always put things in writing. She told me I could take notes...which is a good point. However, I was asking her to put company policies in writing, not just work assignments. Policies should be provided in writing just so everyone knows what's expected of them. That just a good business practice, but I digress.

    The meeting escalated with her telling me that she doesn't see the need to provide with the reasonable accommodation to telecommute two days out of the week. She told me, "I don't see how an extra day makes any difference and you come in to work everyday and perform the job, so you don't need two days."

    I was livid, but I calmly told her that what she was saying was not the burden of proof under ADA. She could only deny my reasonable accommodation if it was causing the company undue harship...meaning that it was costing the company a lot of money (which it wasn't. My telecommuting wasn't costing the company a penny) or if it would disrupt the company's business (which they couldn't prove because no one in my position has ever telecommuted before)...not because she personally doesn't believe that I had a hidden disability. I repeatedly told her that she was breaking the law, and I even provided her with printouts from the JAN's website and ADA regulations from the Department of Justice. Reading between the lines, my supervisor basically told me that I am taking advantage of the situation and am claiming to be sick because I'm lazy. I'm not lazy. I'm sick, and all I'm asking for are my rights as they are provided to me under the law. I don't understand why she can't see that. I can't believe that she is so into her personal opinion that she would risk someone suing the company because of her insolence.

    I don't know what today will bring. When I left the office yesterday, she was still in a conference with our boss. She called her boss today, who knows what that was about. My supervisor even told me that she doesn't think I like the job (that's not true. I just don't like being discriminated against), and that I might want to consider looking elsewhere for a job if the situation couldn't be rectified. I didn't know how to react to that.

    So I guess now I just have to sit and wait. Our boss hasn't said anything to me yet, so I guess I'll have to pretend this is a non-issue for the time being.
    [This Message was Edited on 01/22/2003]
  2. Newswoman

    Newswoman New Member

    I'm going to have my rhuemy write a letter. I was going to wait until I had other ducks in a row, but I guess I'm going to have to handle this situation a lot sooner than I thought.
  3. sofy

    sofy New Member

    It sounds to me like she thinks you are a whiner who is threatening her with ADA to get your way. Somehow you need to get her to understand that your helath problem causes you to measure everything in units of energy used because your body does not manufacture new units as fast as most people. You are asking to telecommute 2 days a week so those two days wont waste any energy units coming going, getting dressed for the office etc. By using your energy units wisely you are certain you will be able to the job to her satisfaction. As to notes, assure her you will implement this into your work routine immediately. (You might even get a hand held tape recorder as a memo pad) You could make it a practice of at least once a week, once a day or whatever you think right of asking her if their are any areas you need to improve. She is your boss and you cannot do a good job unless you find a way to mend this fence and have a good working relationship. The kind of person she is does not matter. You dont have to socialize with her, thank God.
    I'm not there and know I could be completely off on my guesses but hope some of it might help.
  4. Kimba

    Kimba New Member

    We all know that HR usually works for the company, but this is one case that they usually side witht he employee. It reduces those pesky little law suites. DO NOT GO INTO A MEETING WITH A BUNCH OF MANAGER AND NOT HR REPRESENTATION.

    If you are called into a meeting with your boss and her boss and her boss' boss and they start talking about your job ask to have an HR person sit in the meeting because this matter involved HR. They are the ones that know all the rules about ADA, job accomdataion etc. If they will not do that, say excuse me leave the office and call them yourself. Don't allow them to railroad out by intimidation.
  5. Bambi

    Bambi New Member

    Where my daughter works they are giving disabled employees the same kind of run around. She has watched
    them zone in on someone and make an
    organized effort to make the working
    situation so difficult that eventually the workers voluntarily quit. She's afraid to ask for any kind of consideration because of it.
    She says they can be "forced" to comply but then they can make it hell
    to be there. There's little worse than being in a job or a marriage that you are miserable in. I think the suggestion about the HR is a good
    one, though truthfully I have no idea
    what it is. Sounds like some sort of
    advocate though? Good luck and take it one step at a time. It might not hurt to talk to a disability lawyer
    if they only charge a small fee for
    a consultation, at least you know for
    sure where your legal rights are exactly. Will be praying for you.
  6. Newswoman

    Newswoman New Member

    Unfortunately, we don't have an HR person. The CEO of the company (my supervisor's boss) is the HR person.

    My supervisor is off on Wednesdays. We'll see what happens when she comes in tomorrow. I'm hoping she read over the information I gave her and realizes the seriousness of the issue. Realistcially, I'm not holding my breath on this one...but we'll see what happens.

    The CEO was really nice to me today. I don't know whether to take that as the calm before the storm or if she reemed my supervisor out for possibly creating a legal nightmare for the company. I'm cautiously optimistic.

    I'll keep everyone posted, and once again, thanks for the kind words and suggestions.
    [This Message was Edited on 01/22/2003]
  7. AnnetClo

    AnnetClo New Member

    These guys have given you some great information and I don't have a lot to add other than....please document all that's going on. Dates, times, what was said, who was there, ..... I'm sure you know the drill. Maybe she thinks after you admitted that you have trouble retaining info with the Fibro Fog that you won't be able to remember what she says or does or that she can cover her butt by saying that you admitted that you couldn't remember things so you must have gotten things confused. So just in case it would ever come down to a legal matter, be prepared. And I wish there was something more I could do to help you but since I'm "way over here", consider yourself hugged!!

  8. coyote

    coyote New Member

    You should definitely have a letter from a doctor on file at work stating that you have a disability, and what the nature of it is.
    I had that, and my supervisor still angrily denied me a key to the elevator. It was because he was ignorant about FM.
    You might want to keep a written record of the conversations you have with your supervisor.
    Call a lawyer and describe your problem to him/her, and/or call your state office for people with disabilities.

    Don't give up or give in because of someone's ignorance.
  9. evileva

    evileva New Member

    document everything that is said, dates,time, place. It is called CYA... that way you will have everything that you need in case there is a lawsuit. Good luck and hang in there.
  10. popgun

    popgun New Member

    Contact a LAWYERRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!! NOW, TODAY and any meeting would include a small tape recorder placed where all could see, Remember this is for your survival, and you must look-out for your future.
  11. Dara

    Dara New Member

    that is said and even the attitude you are receiving because of it. As soon as you get home from work, if you can, sit down and write everything down while it is fresh in your mind, the date, the time, what, where and who. It is so important to keep a paper trail, believe me they will have their paper trail on the matter. I do believe that you have to have a letter from a doctor to request ADA accmodations before they have to comply. Good luck, I'm sorry for what you are going through, I would not want to be in your shoes.

  12. Dara

    Dara New Member

    have you tried getting help from the Department of Vocational Services? This is a state agency in every state who helps workers with a disability either keep the job they have or find a more suitable job. They will make recommendations to your employer and sometimes even pay for special accomodations you might need to help you keep working. Just a thought that popped into my head about 3am while not sleeping.