Tuesday, December 06, 2005

It's not me, it's him.

Things you never had to deal with before you were a parent: taking days off because the offspring is sick.
Like everyone, I've taken the odd day off sick in my working life. Everyone, that is, except a former colleague I shall only call TR and who Has Never Taken A Day Off Sick in his life. How sad - sorry, I mean fortunate - is that? He was one of those kids who got the Perfect Attendance prize at school, in an unfortunate attempt at making the rest of us feel like workshy bastards. And to draw attention from the fact that his exam results lacked a little something.
Anyway. Today I had to phone in Vicariously Sick. Sick by proxy, like that Munchausen bloke.
Graeme Jr had a serious dose of vomiting and diaorrhea (you spell it better, matey), and there was no choice but to stay at home with him. That sounds callous, the 'no choice' thing, but there's always a balance between 'can I afford to lose my job, and thus never be able to pay the mortgage again?' and 'my child is ill, this is the most important thing in the world ever'.
There's a lot of guilt associated with phoning in sick. There's also a lot of people who don't give a fuck, I guess, but I'm not considering them. Phoning in sick as a parent ("It's not me, it's my kid. He's only two but already he's a workshy bastard and I'll be in as soon as he's sorted himself out. Sometime in 2027, I imagine.") doubles the guilt dose. I might as well say "It's not me, it's him"
Anyway, my point is - not many employers are geared up for employees needing time for their children. Which is odd, considering most employers have children. Or is it? Most of my former managers either have little wifies at home or nannys on tap and don't recognise the problem.
Trying to get them to understand that my wife has the career and I'll do the stay-at-home stuff is amusing. Maybe 'amusing' isn't the precise word.
Any road up. Phoning in sick for yourself is hard enough, but phoning in sick for your kids makes you feel like a lying fucker. You may feel differently.

0 Old Comments: