Endometriosis UK
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Endo & Work

Hello! I am in my third week being signed off work due to a laparoscopy and treatment, which is longer than I expected to be off. Although I am so pleased that I have taken the time to recover properly and finally feel more human I am anxious about the reaction from my employer. They were understanding in week one but now appear to be frustrated that I am not back yet. The company I work for have a very strict policy on sickness and I am concerned about the impact this time off will have on my pay and future at the company. I work in a small team in a very busy and demanding department and although my co-workers are friendly they aren't supportive, there is very much a 'just get on with it' attitude which is making me dread returning next week. I am still very tired, emotional and anxious, and being in a customer facing role I am worried that I will have a wobble without any support. I guess what I am asking is, what are you experiences of work while having problems with endo or following surgery. Did you raise any awareness of endo? If you did, did it help? Or should I stop fretting and toughen up a bit? I'd love to hear your experiences, I think just knowing that I'm not alone would make me feel much more confident.

3 Replies

Hiya, I too took three weeks off in total, my employer is quite supportive though so I never have to explain myself to them but it doesn't stop me feeling anxious about taking time off! I did tell my boss what I have and he got rather uncomfortable about what it involves and said to me "if you need surgery then its serious and that all I need to know"!

Hold your head up high, you have had major surgery (keyhole doesn't mean what they performed inside was any less invasive just smaller wounds externally!) if your colleagues went through what you did they would have a very different attitude. Your health is far more important than being at work. If you are a hard working member of the team otherwise you really don't have to justify it. I am sure though that they will be more sympathetic than you expect.

Good luck and sending big healing vibes xxx

1 like

Thank you so, so much for your reply. I am in the middle of discussing my return with HR and your message has made me feel so much more reassured. My doctor has recommended that I have a phased return for a week as I become sore and fatigued in the afternoon but I feel so guilty about actually requesting it. You are spot on, health is so much more important and I am sure that I will be a much better employee when I am back to my best. It is so nice to be able to hear the experiences of other women with endo, its a great feeling to be understood and to feel that what you are going through is 'normal'. Thanks again! xx

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I've been off for 2 weeks before, doctor signed me off for one and I signed myself off for the first week. I've been very upfront and honest with my boss, they weren't very happy at first but now they've started to become very supportive and supporting me until my op is finally done (been for 2 pre-ops, op cancelled the day before and now being transferred to another hospital). My colleagues weren't very nice about it to me either but they're starting to understand and I've also found out that there is another 2 ladies who had endo at work. Not many people are very nice about it, but I tend to use the expression "well your organs aren't stuck together are they?" Which shocks quite a few.

Hope this helps slightly, some people need to realise that endo can be very minor and some endo can be aggressive x


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