This has been a whirlwind of a week. My employer had a meeting with other manager with me about my poor work performance that they say dropped off suddenly four months ago. I also developed an infection on my lungs around that time which attributed me in not wanting to work in a dusty environment where part of my job description has me working. I've been there 4 years.
So the management have been super kind and understanding and supportive. But I also know by law they can not just can me when I have a legit mental health illness and infection that developed years after what they described as one of their top employees. I feel embarrassed because I know they told other people other than who was in the room for my meeting about my poor performance and shameful proof of my depression.
Today one of the managers asked me if I felt overwhelmed or bullied the other day in the meeting. His words seemed very unnatural - like it was from a check-list he was checking off. It makes me fear that they really do want to get rid of me and they are being super careful to do all the right things because of the laws against discrimination in the workplace.
They took me out of the dusty environment job- which was 1/3 or my duties. I walked in that workroom today and my lungs felt it straightaway. I went to the doctor again today and was diagnosed for the second time with a lung infection. I feel now that everyone knows I have mental illness that no one will take me seriously when I say anything.
One of the managers asked how I was today. It was the first time I saw him since the meeting. I said I went to the doctor today and recieved more meditation for my lung infection and an appointment for a chest x-Ray. And that my doctor said my infection couldn't a reason why I am so tired. And the manager added... - and depression.
I told him I would rather have a wound bleeding from my head than have depression. I had expression and been on medication for four years- but the only person in the world that knew was my partner - other than my doctors of course. And now everyone at work knows. Then some people will think i was just lazy letting my work performance crash- and then some people will think I am weak and crazy. How do I know this? Because I heard some of the staff make fun of another employee last year who was on depression pills. I feel like i am walking around with the Scarlet Letter on my chest. I never felt like this before. I felt it was my own private matter. And now it is like my soiled laundry is on display at the town square.
I followed others advice given to me on this supportive board. I walked in to work pretending to be confident and sincere and ready to get back to work as normal as I possibly could. But inside i really struggled.
The person taking over my dust allergy room environment will be much better than I ever was. I have seen his work and it is excellent. They said to me I will be still there in the morning but focusing on my speciality that I was hired for. The owner of the company said anyone can do the cleaning parts but not everyone can do the speciality I was trained and hired for.
I just really do feel like they will phase me out somehow or I will b getting a pay cut. I know the speciality skill I have is the only reason why they didn't fire me besides the fact there is a law to protect mental illness suffers. I just feel like the child no one wanted on their team so the teacher forced them into the group. Part of me wants to just disappear from this entire situation. But I do need a job.
My partner said all of this will eventually work in my favour because I will be out of the dusty environment making my lungs sick and Doing more of the work I love. But I really really don't trust all this. Maybe they are concerned how my lung infection is connected with my workplace but i know they could argue i got it from somewhere else. I told them I never said that I got it from work but it defiantly was aggravated now when I walk in that environment. I think they know me well enough I am would never try to blame them and try to sue or anything like that. Really that has never been a thought of something I would even try to do. And they have been very swift to get me out of working in the dusty environment. So I have no complaints at all about that.
But I do feel people are treating me different. A co-worker I never spoke with hardly ever before made an extra effort to come up to say hello to me today. And another co-worker that i spoke with everyday completely avoided me today. Another one awkwardly asked me if I wanted to borrow a tool for a job I was doing. It seemed like an excuse to make conversation as I didn't need to per se borrow he offered to me. But I was gracious and then later on gave him a sincere thank-you. So like I am really making an effort to be approachable and polite to anyone who talks to me or makes a kind gesture.
But here is the thing. I heard just today someone making fun of someone else not on the room who 'looked' like they had Down Syndrome. If they are mean about one disability I find it hard to believe they are not mean about my disability. Everyone wants to be politically correct when the camera is on- but deep down I really feel I should just get of everything to do with my old life. I want the privacy I felt I once had. Now i really feel like a pitiful nothing.