do we have to tell the whole truth?

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These are things that happen, but with varying degrees of severity. We can take sick leave for a gastro as for a burnout. But what to say to our colleagues or to his often curious manager when he returns to work?

Using the vagueness of sick leave

“Employees often ignore it, but nothing, in the law, absolutely nothing, obliges them to reveal the reasons of a sick leave, insists Marielle Dumortier, author of the guide My occupational doctor (published by Le Cherche Midi). This applies to all his colleagues, whether it is his office neighbor, his manager and even the HRD. The only legal obligation is to notify the company of his absence by sending his sick leave on time. “To have been confronted with the situation, the employees know that the leaflet to send to his employer remains very evasive on the reasons for his absence. “It is not for nothing because it is strictly a matter of private life,” continues the occupational physician. Too often, I see employees come back and unpack everything, sometimes hoping for a little understanding. However, even if his manager seems benevolent, we must remember that he is not necessarily a friend… ”This specialist recalls that it is necessary to weigh the consequences of the truth. “Obviously, it's not the same if you've had the flu or gone through a depression, for example. But there are diseases that it is better to keep to yourself to avoid certain prejudices afterwards, even that it is not rumored to others … ”

Know what to say and to whom

“If we have had gastro, we can say it because it is common and it will arouse a certain sympathy, smiles Marianne Perrette, consultant at Coach2Vie. For such a banal illness, no need to make any mysteries! But for having accompanied employees back to work, this coach insists on the importance of the gaze of others. ” In the event of serious illness, you can talk to a trusted colleague, but you really have to be sure of your discretion.. “But when an employee returns after a burnout or chemotherapy, he will not necessarily want to lie down. “In these cases, I recommend preparing a few sentences to close the parenthesis. We can say for example “I had a big problem but things are better now for example”. A coworker will understand that you want to talk about something else and a manager hears what he needs to hear: that you are ready to work as before. ”

Do not refuse help when you need it

But still remains the case, frequent, where precisely one cannot work as before. “”It often happens that the employee needs to resume slowly, because he still has care or simply because he does not yet have the physical or psychological strength to completely plunge into something else”, testifies Marielle Dumortier. Because the employer sometimes hopes, wrongly, to find his employee fully operational. ” Illness remains a difficult subject to tackle in a company, which is why an employee has an interest in taking advantage of certain support. To facilitate their return, this doctor regularly recommends that the employees she meets use the devices provided for by law. “If there is an appointment to make and not to miss, it is the pre-return visit, two to three weeks before returning to work. Discussions with the occupational physician are confidential. He will know how to guide the employee on certain possible aids and can even make recommendations to the employer, such as a change of workstation or temporary rhythm to avoid certain fatigue. ”

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