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  #1  
Old 03-22-2006, 04:42 PM
Indygrrl Indygrrl is offline
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What do you say when you call in sick?

I don't know about you all, but even if I am truly and honestly ill, I feel like I'm lying when I call in. I never know what I should say, whether I should go into detail or keep it simple and just say I'm sick. Either way I always feel like I'm putting one over on them.

Maybe I've just faked too many times.
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  #2  
Old 03-22-2006, 04:50 PM
Kalhoun Kalhoun is offline
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I haven't called in sick in years, but I'm the same way with the guilt. It's from faking it so many times. I generally say something like, "I'm feeling like shit. I'm not sure what I have, but if I'm not better by tomorrow, I'm calling the doctor."
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  #3  
Old 03-22-2006, 04:53 PM
JThunder JThunder is offline
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I never lie about being sick. Having said that, I do sometimes wonder if someone might be thinking, "Ah. Another person faking an illness..."
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  #4  
Old 03-22-2006, 04:59 PM
gotpasswords gotpasswords is offline
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What do I say? "Ahb sick!"

Actually, I more often than not communicate with my management by email as they're several states away. If I'm not desparately ill, it also give me the opportunity to fill them in on my current workload and any projects that might need attention in the next day or two.
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  #5  
Old 03-22-2006, 05:24 PM
Anaamika Anaamika is offline
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I don't often fake it, maybe 1-2 times a year, right? But I still feel guilty as hell. And I don't like it.

My office is not going to fall apart if I take a single day off. It really isn't. And sometimes I desperately need to. But..still I feel guilty. Sometimes I don't even enjoy the day fully.

When I'm really sick, I still feel guilty. I'm hoping this will stop though, as I took two days off for a cold early this year - and got over it in five days rather than two weeks. Got sick Wednesday, took off Thursday & Friday, was better Monday. So it really does make a difference.
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  #6  
Old 03-22-2006, 05:31 PM
Airblairxxx Airblairxxx is offline
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For some reason, I always find myself starting to describe my symptoms to my boss's voicemail.

"Hi, this is airblairxxx, I'm going to stay at home today, I've got a bad case of explosive diarrhea."



Generally speaking, she does not wish to know that level of detail. I doubt that that is unusual among bosses.
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  #7  
Old 03-22-2006, 05:52 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
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I just send an email in to my group at work that says something like
Quote:
Originally Posted by iamasickwalrus(:|=
I'm not feeling well and will be at home today. I may or may not be checking email, depending on whether I'm awake, how pissy the VPN decides to be, and what's on TV. In an emergency [boss] has my cell phone number.
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  #8  
Old 03-22-2006, 05:57 PM
YaWanna YaWanna is offline
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Generally something like, "I feel terrible. I don't think I'll make it in today, but if I feel better in the afternoon, I'll try to make it. I'm really sorry."

And I do feel guilty, unless I've been to the doctor and been ordered to stay home for the day(s).

But I hate it when I get nagged by an ignorant boss to "demand antibiotics from my doctor," when I'm 99% sure it's a virus!!
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  #9  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:00 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Depends.

If my boss knows me, he knows that I wouldn't be calling in sick unless I was. So with those bosses I don't need to give explanations; I do give an estimated time for being back at work.

If he either doesn't know me or simply refuses to believe there is such a thing as honesty (I've had several bosses belonging to this second species), then they start asking for details. In which case I do explain, and often they wish they'd bitten their tongues. Hard. I can be very good at descriptions.
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  #10  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:07 PM
Anaamika Anaamika is offline
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Oh, right, the question was what do you say, not how do you feel. Normally I tell them the truth. My current boss is really good about it.
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  #11  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:38 PM
Podkayne Podkayne is offline
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I just say, "I'm not feeling well today, so I'm afraid won't be coming in."

As for the details, I don't figure anybody wants to hear it.

I don't feel guilty about it, because I don't call in unless I'm feeling like death warmed over, and I know I'd be no use to anyone at work, anyway. And I've never come back from a sickday and have my students tell me, "We missed you soooooo much! We're so sad you cancelled class! We wanted to leeeeaaaaarrrrrrnnnnnnnnn!"
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  #12  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:40 PM
BoBettie BoBettie is offline
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I'm in a position where I receive sick calls from the people I supervise. I specifically requested that they not give me details on their illnesses- I just said to them that I assume they're adults and would not call off if they weren't too sick to work, so if they can't make it in, just call and say "I'm not well enough to make it to work today." Why would I need more info then that? I don't care if they're too crampy, to poopy, sniffling, snotty, or whatever. Just say you're not coming and if you know, when you expect to return. If it's going to be an extended period of time, then we'll talk more.

If I call off to MY boss, I say "Boss, I will not be in work on March 22, 2006. So and so will be covering my shift. I would like to use PTO to cover my hours for that shift. Thank you." and leave it at that. She doesn't ask and I don't tell.
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  #13  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:51 PM
shelbo shelbo is offline
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"Heeeyyy, Boss, I'm like really, really **(dude, shut up I'm on the phone)** uh, sick today. Uh, and, uh, I don't think **(dude, wait a second ok?!, geeze)**, uh, I don't think I can make it in, so, uhhh, I, uhh **(yea, get me one too -- no, not a light, retard!)** I'll see you tomorrow, I hope! *cough* Uh, ok, bye. **(whooo h-)**" -click-
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  #14  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:51 PM
Avarie537 Avarie537 is offline
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I always start vague and answer any questions they might have about the nature of the malady, but try to keep it non-TMI. I tend to use the phrase "digestive upset" if I'm puking and/or having the trots. That's usually enough.
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  #15  
Old 03-22-2006, 06:57 PM
specie specie is offline
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When I call in sick, I never specify. And I don't fake a sick accent. If somebody asks, I tell them it's that "24 hour polio" they just discovered.
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  #16  
Old 03-22-2006, 07:42 PM
Harborwolf Harborwolf is offline
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Nothing specific. I just tell them that I won't be in due to illness.
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  #17  
Old 03-22-2006, 07:49 PM
Earthworm Jim Earthworm Jim is offline
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I've always pretty much said the same thing - "I'm not feeling well & can't make it in today."

For a while, I was in a job that didn't track your sick time (as long as it didn't get out of hand). I felt guilty calling in then.

Now my vacation & sick time are all the same time, so it's coming to me no matter what. I have no guilt.
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  #18  
Old 03-22-2006, 07:55 PM
Man With a Cat Man With a Cat is offline
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In my office, I'm the boss. I do report to an Asst. Superintendent though, so I have to make two calls.

To my assistant in my office, I generally leave a voice mail. I sneak in the back door of the voice mail instead of calling her line directly, and just say I won't be in, I'm using a sick day.

Then I usually ask her to call my boss and pass the message.

Even if I am home sick, he knows I check the work e-mail during the day, and I have the cell phone. If he needs me, I answer. Sick or not.
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  #19  
Old 03-22-2006, 07:59 PM
sandra_nz sandra_nz is online now
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Like several others here, I go the "I'm not well and won't be in today"

I am always genuinely unwell, I'm quite susceptible to headcolds and flu (last winter I had three versions of the flu, hooray), so I always use up my sick leave quote (5 days per annum) leaving no room for sickies!
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  #20  
Old 03-22-2006, 07:59 PM
Rhiannon8404 Rhiannon8404 is offline
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I very rarely called in sick when I was working. When I did it was usually because I had woken up with a migraine. The people in my office were well aware of how bad my migraines were. Call to my manager went something like, "Hi, it's Rhiannon, I won't be in" "Migraine?" "Yeah" "Well, feel better soon."
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  #21  
Old 03-22-2006, 08:00 PM
Sublight Sublight is offline
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Since the last time I took a sick day was when I was in the hospital undergoing cancer treatment, I think if I just say "I'm feeling sick today. Sorry." they'll go along with it.

Actually, I just remembered I did take a sick day last year when I had a bad cold. I told them I was feeling fucked up with a bad cold, and if they really needed anything to call or email and I'd take it from home.
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  #22  
Old 03-22-2006, 08:35 PM
MannyL MannyL is offline
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I just call and say I won't be in today. My supervisor always says take one day thye think you may be faking, take two days and they believe you are sick
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  #23  
Old 03-22-2006, 08:52 PM
Lionne Lionne is offline
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If I'm faking it, I call first thing when I wake up. My voice sounds scratchy and thick then, so it sounds true.
If I am truly sick, same thing.

I don't really feel guilty, unless I know I'm putting someone out. When I worked at a restaurant and someone had to cover my shift, you can bet I was truly ill before I called out.

slight hijack...

Is it 'called out' sick or 'called in' sick? I always used 'out' as in 'I'll be out of work today because I'm ill." I've heard both phrases, but I wonder which is most correct.
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  #24  
Old 03-22-2006, 08:54 PM
Rhiannon8404 Rhiannon8404 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MannyL
I just call and say I won't be in today. My supervisor always says take one day thye think you may be faking, take two days and they believe you are sick
This reminds me of what my dad told me when I got my first real job. He said never call in sick on a Monday, even if you really are sick. Go in and get yourself sent home. If you call in sick on a Monday, they'll think you were out partying all weekend and you're hung over.
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  #25  
Old 03-22-2006, 09:23 PM
Dewey Finn Dewey Finn is offline
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I had a co-worker out sick for three days in a row last month, and on the third day, the team lead asked the co-worker to go to the doctor. I didn't understand how that was supposed to work.

When I've been sick enough to miss several days in a row, I was also far too sick to drag myself to the doctor. Plus what doctor wants you sitting in his waiting room infecting everyone else? And my current office is actually closer than my doctor's office. So if this team lead tries to tell me to go to the doctor, I'm tempted to offer to come to work so I can cough and sneeze all over him.
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  #26  
Old 03-22-2006, 09:24 PM
even sven even sven is offline
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I never call in sick when I am really sick. I somehow make it there on the bus, straggle in to work, immediately realize I am too sick, say "I don't thinK I am going to be able to be much use in the office" and go back home. The bus ride home and walk up the hill is always hellish.

The odd thing is I have no problem taking an occasional "mental health" day. I always call in very early on those days and manage to sound amazingly ill.
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  #27  
Old 03-22-2006, 09:35 PM
Kythereia Kythereia is offline
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I can't remember a time I've actually called in sick. I've gotten sick on the job--the supervisor will take one look at me and say, "Kythereia, get out of the store and go home". But I always try to make the effort to get there first.
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  #28  
Old 03-22-2006, 09:38 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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"Press 3 for illness."
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  #29  
Old 03-22-2006, 09:38 PM
Rigamarole Rigamarole is offline
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Ahh, I never get sick. I used to fake it constantly in my school days. When I worked some less-than-fun jobs I did it every once in a while. But I did always still feel a little guilty.

I would just say something like "I'm really not feeling well enough to come in today." and then cough and wheeze a bit for dramatic effect. Then they would really try to push me to come in, or to come in later in the day and I just had to assert that no, I wasn't coming in today.
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  #30  
Old 03-22-2006, 10:42 PM
AHunter3 AHunter3 is offline
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Fucking hell. Your jobs must suck. I call in and I say "I've decided to call in sick." They never question that.

On the other hand, we have no distinction between sick days and vacation days. One pile of days and when you use them all up, they're gone.

Maybe it's my job that sucks.
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  #31  
Old 03-22-2006, 10:48 PM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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We have no distinction between sick days and vacation days, either, but generally you're supposed to ask ahead of time and fill out paperwork for the latter.

I just say that I feel awful, won't be in, and then add any info that they might need if there's anything I was supposed to be doing urgently that day.
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  #32  
Old 03-23-2006, 04:15 AM
blueslipper blueslipper is offline
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Australian idea

I don't know whether this is an Australian thing or not. The bosses here always ask the person "What do you have? What are the symptoms etc" The unions always have to remind the workers that they need not be answering said questions as it is an invasion of privacy. Many people have told me this. And three different union's handouts have made me believe this is a problem in Australia.
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  #33  
Old 03-23-2006, 04:27 AM
Alessan Alessan is offline
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I always ask permission, even if I don't have to. "Listen, I'm sick - I feel like crap. You mind if I don't come in today?". 19 times out of 20 they'll say sure, fell better; the 20th time, there's something so important going on at work I probably should be there anyway even if I AM sick. It's a good system - it makes the boss feel magnanimous, and on the rare occasion he or she actually insists on me coming, I come out looking like a real trooper.
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  #34  
Old 03-23-2006, 05:31 AM
don't ask don't ask is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueslipper
I don't know whether this is an Australian thing or not. The bosses here always ask the person "What do you have? What are the symptoms etc" The unions always have to remind the workers that they need not be answering said questions as it is an invasion of privacy. Many people have told me this. And three different union's handouts have made me believe this is a problem in Australia.
I've called in sick for myself and other people to lots of different empoyers and have never heard of this.

As for myself I usually say that the voices in my head kept me up all night with the constant chanting "kill them all, kill them all," but I'll be in tomorrow.
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  #35  
Old 03-23-2006, 05:32 AM
Anastasaeon Anastasaeon is offline
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I always felt guilty, too. Even though I would really, truly be sick, I always felt like they'd think I was faking it. Luckily, I'd usually get the secretary, who I adored and she was very sweet and very easy to convince; however, I'd still put on the old "sick accent" as thick as possible.

"Ahmb dorry, Rode, Ahmb feelingh awbully dick doday."
"Oh, you sound terrible!"
"Ah doe. Ah doe. Ahmb daking dome andeehidameends."
"You do that. Drink lots of liquids. I'll tell [boss] you won't be in today. You take care."
"Dankoo Rode."

Her name was Rose, if you're having trouble with the translation.
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  #36  
Old 03-23-2006, 08:41 AM
yellowval yellowval is offline
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The last time I called in sick everyone in the office already knew I hadn't been feeling well. I sounded so bad all I had to do was say, "Carol," when she answered the phone and she said, "Stay home." I came back the next day, but couldn't talk for the next two. But yeah, even when I really am sick I still feel guilty about calling in.
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  #37  
Old 03-23-2006, 09:03 AM
Elza B Elza B is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhiannon8404
This reminds me of what my dad told me when I got my first real job. He said never call in sick on a Monday, even if you really are sick. Go in and get yourself sent home. If you call in sick on a Monday, they'll think you were out partying all weekend and you're hung over.
The only day I actually called in sick at my current job was the Monday after Thanksgiving. I felt terribly guilty doing it, but I really WAS sick - I'd started getting sick on Saturday, was pretty sick on Sunday, and was still sick on Monday, but getting better. Luckily, I have a very understanding boss, and that was the only time I'd called in sick (and still is), so she didn't think I was faking it.

We also have a pretty generous bank of PTO time, though (which I'm saving up for my maternity leave, though), so I can usually take off with a day or two notice if I want to. My boss is fairly flexible as long as we don't have a major event coming up or a board meeting.

E.
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  #38  
Old 03-23-2006, 09:24 AM
squeekster squeekster is offline
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At my last job, I usually used one of two excuses.

"I won't be in today. I feel like about 100 miles of bad road."

or

"I won't be in today. I've been up all night going at both ends."
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  #39  
Old 03-23-2006, 09:24 AM
BlackNGold BlackNGold is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey Finn
I had a co-worker out sick for three days in a row last month, and on the third day, the team lead asked the co-worker to go to the doctor. I didn't understand ....
That's our company's policy, more than three in a row requires a doctor's report. I guess it's just to prevent abuse, like using five in a row to get a week's vacation without using vacation time.

When I call in, I just say, "This is BlackNGold , I'm not coming in, mark me down for a sick day". Like today No scratchy voice, no guilt. However, my job doesn't require anyone to pick up my slack, I'll probably just have to work Saturday to complete my weekly tasks.
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  #40  
Old 03-23-2006, 09:37 AM
gigi gigi is offline
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Around here, we are given personal days which are to cover sick and unsceduled time off. If I'm actually sick I will call in and say I am sick and will be out. No details, although I understand sometimes people include them to seem more legit. If I just need a mental health day or personal day, I call in and say I need to take a personal day that day. No problem. In fact, during orientation they said we get these kinds of all-purpose days so that we don't have make up a story.
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  #41  
Old 03-23-2006, 10:01 AM
taxi78cab taxi78cab is offline
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I always just say that I'm not feeling well and won't be in. It doesn't matter whether it's a mental health day or I'm really sick - I still always feel guilty and worry that they'll think I'm faking it.

he last time I was sick, though, everyone in the office got the same cold to one degree or another. So at least in that case they knew I wasn't faking it because everyone knew exactly how bad I was feeling. That wasn't fun. I wish more people had stayed home and had kept their germs to themselves!
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  #42  
Old 03-23-2006, 10:53 AM
Megyn Megyn is offline
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Almost every time I "faked it" and called in, I ended up actually getting sick that same day. :P "I can't make it in today, I don't feel well" *click* ahh dang, where'd this fever come from?

I figure it was either my guilty concious giving some validity to the claim, or my brain knew before the rest of my body did that I was really sick. Regardless of which it is, I don't fake it often, just in case.

Chalk me up as one of the "feels guilty, even if I really am sick" folks. I always feel like I'm abandoning my coworkers, even though I know I won't help them by passing my germs on to them. That doesn't make me feel any less guilty though.

The only time I didn't feel guilty calling in was a day I requested off. My boss told me he couldn't authorize it, because too many people were going to be out that day. As I was walking away from his desk he stopped me and said, "But I can't control whether or not you call in sick...." and winked at me. The reason for my request had been an important one, and my boss knew this. He couldn't give me the day off pre-scheduled because of the policy, but gave me permission the only way he could. I took that day off guilt free.
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  #43  
Old 03-23-2006, 11:26 AM
Millit the Frail Millit the Frail is offline
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My company gives us plenty of vacation but doens't allow us access to it for the first six months. (I have 18 days left.) So for Christmas, I used all my personal days, and I've only had sick days left since then. Whenever I want a day off, I have to pretend I'm sick. I wish we just got one pile of personal-slash-sick days so that we could use them as we please, but nooo. I've had to make up stories a couple of times, and I hate doing it, but that time is mine. As long as I don't run out, I will use it whenever I please and for whatever reason.

And if people ask "what I had," I say, "that's personal." I mean, what if I had explosive diarrhea? Or a gynecological problem? None of their business at all.
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  #44  
Old 03-23-2006, 01:26 PM
JohnT JohnT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indygrrl
I don't know about you all, but even if I am truly and honestly ill, I feel like I'm lying when I call in. I never know what I should say, whether I should go into detail or keep it simple and just say I'm sick. Either way I always feel like I'm putting one over on them.

Maybe I've just faked too many times.
I just call and say that I'm taking one of my sick days.

Which is the truth, of course.
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  #45  
Old 03-23-2006, 02:57 PM
Quartz Quartz is offline
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Always tell the truth. I simply say that I've been up all night / have a really bad cold / whatever and that is that.
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  #46  
Old 03-23-2006, 03:34 PM
Cunctator Cunctator is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueslipper
I don't know whether this is an Australian thing or not. The bosses here always ask the person "What do you have? What are the symptoms etc" The unions always have to remind the workers that they need not be answering said questions as it is an invasion of privacy. Many people have told me this. And three different union's handouts have made me believe this is a problem in Australia.
I've never experienced this in any job in Australia. I generally just say "I'm feeling sick and won't be in today".
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  #47  
Old 03-23-2006, 07:50 PM
racer72 racer72 is offline
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My employer make it easy. Call the attendance hotline number, at the tone enter my employee ID number, *, number for benefit requrested (1 for vacation, 2 for sick leave), *, then the last four digits of my shop (3839) then I hang up.
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  #48  
Old 03-23-2006, 08:03 PM
lizardling lizardling is offline
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"lizardling is out of office sick. If you need anything, contact my lead."

"liz is never ever going to eat Food X again."
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  #49  
Old 03-23-2006, 10:29 PM
mnemosyne mnemosyne is offline
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My company makes us call a "sick line" where we leave a message on an answering machine. I leave my name, who my supervisor is (and department), when I plan to be back at work, and if I remember, my phone number (they ask for it in the message, but I conveniently forget, because I really don't think they need to call me back!)

I then fire off an email to my supervisor, telling her I'm out for the day (my "illnesses" are usually migraine and/or insomnia, so one day to recover is usually enough) and letting her know what equipment I was using and any details another chemist may need to know to finish my work, assuming it can't wait a day. I tell her the reason I'm out, but that's really just because I like her and don't mind her knowing. If it was something more serious, I may or may not describe the problem, it's never happened, so I don't know.

I also feel guilty the whole day, but I don't take the time off unless I really need it. I don't take half days, simply because my job is nearly an hour away, and the drive just isn't worth it for 4 hours of work. If the work I'm missing is something that they might need me for, I give my supervisor my home phone number too, but she's never used it, and it would have to be one hell of a crazy situation for them to need me that urgently!
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  #50  
Old 03-23-2006, 11:47 PM
Sleel Sleel is offline
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I just call in and tell them I'm sick and that I'm not coming to work.

The only frustration I have with this is that they push me to go to the doctor's. If I don't, I can't use sick time and have to take it out of my vacation, which pisses me off. I don't have a car and the train station is over 1 km from my house. My clinic is 2 km from the station. If I'm healthy enough to make a 6 km trip on foot, I'm healthy enough to go to work. Screw that! If I'm sick I'm staying at home and sleeping, not taking a bloody hike.
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