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Considering working full time

norwich76norwich76 Posts: 5
Hi - I am new to this forum, and couldn't quite see the answer to my query but sorry if I am repeating anything.
I see a lot of people who are worried about having their working hours reduced, but I am seriously thinking about requesting less days per week - which seems a bit crazy given the recession and that I have no savings, but - I currently work full-time (5 days per week) and, due to my condition and the knock-on effects, my capacity for anything outside of work is diminishing by the day.
Even keeping on top of laundry and housework is difficult, never mind visiting relatives and pursuing hobbies. I feel if I worked less hours, and could get by financially, I could start working on getting more of a normal life. I have no idea what my employer would think about this. Originally they were quite threatening over issues related to my condition, mostly sickness absence, but over the past 2 years they, and I, have become more informed and they have been a lot more understanding.
Has anyone here had the same thoughts and feelings? Has anyone got any advice they might be willing to share? I can't help thinking people would think me weak..but I have been fighting arthritis passionately for so long - when to I see results?!
Be great to get a second opinion!
Cheers.

Comments

  • creakybonescreakybones Posts: 31
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hiya Norwich 76
    I too was in your position - really struggling working full time - I reduced my hours to 30 per week so not huge reduction but they were spread over 4 days. I found I had 5 days work to do in 4 days but maybe your experience would be different. It did it for a while but health wise things got worse and so I have now finished work. i think it depends on your circumstances - my family life became very stressful at the same time as my health got much worse so reducing my hours wasnt really the answer. If everything else in life had been ok then yes it would have worked. I know of colleagues who now work 4 days say it works great.
    Whatever you decide - hope it works out for you - it is awful to feel you have to virtually give up any sort of personal / family life to work but I had reached that point and I really sympathise. Best wishes to you Xx
  • norwich76norwich76 Posts: 5
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks 'creakybones' - glad to see your sense of humour hasn't been impaired by your condition :) Of course the title of this thread should have been 'Considering working part time' - obviously in need of a break.
  • PollySidPollySid Posts: 343
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    HI, i used to work full time, on my feet all day. About 3 years ago I came to the point that you are at now, and went down from 40 hours to 24 hours (5 days to 3).
    It worked out well as my spare hours plus a part timer leaving meant that they could take on a full time young man who otherwise would have been unemployed. That made me feel that I wasn't letting anyone down.
    I managed the 3 day week until about last July, when I couldn't do the job anymore and was finished on medical grounds.
    It helped me and gave me a couple of extra years of working.
  • paulchpaulch Posts: 103
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    :wink: HI. I use to work 5 1/2 day week 45hrs or so untill i had a stroke and was off work for one year. With onset of other medical probs including OA, i found even working 39 hrs very tiring. i work for a family firm which have been supportive and now let me work 30hrs 5 days of which 2 i can work from home. Yoy need to tell employer everything, i did have support from the hospital that i would benifit with less hours, yes the money is less but have found because of the tax threshold it is not as bad as it was and of course i use less fuel in the car too.
  • norwich76norwich76 Posts: 5
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Thanks PollySid & Paulch - I know it sounds cliched but it really does help to know others have been through similar things and found ways to cope. Hope things are going well.
  • dibdabdibdab Posts: 1,498
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi,

    Like you struggled with diminishing quality of life outside of work, I have RA which has also affected my lungs. With the support of my headteacher(I work in a primary school teaching 5yr olds), 18 months ago I reduced to 3 days a week which is much better. I have to admit that when my RA is active I still struggle on work days, but the rest of the week is so much better.

    I'd say if you can do it go for it-after all life is to be lived not just endured. Hope things work ouit for you.

    Deb x
  • GraceBGraceB Posts: 1,598
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Hi,
    I'm in a very similar situation to you and am currently doing 5 days a week in an office for a Local Authority, but in a small team. I recently asked to drop down to a 4 day week as recommended (and evidenced on paper) by Occupational Health. I'm still awaiting a response but am now aggressively chasing. Dropping hours is a personal thing - I was asked by Occy Health could I afford to drop? They suggested 3 days pr/wk, but I want to keep that for the future.
    Your Income Tax and NI payments will go down so you may not be much worse off financially. Could you claim Working Tax Credit?
    I'd say, if you don't ask you'll never know the answer. Good luck and let us know how you get on.
    GraceB
    Turn a negative into a positive!
  • GraceBGraceB Posts: 1,598
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Following submitting my last post, I logged-off and literally seconds later had an email pop up. My request for 4 day wk on grounds of health (not a whim - but health!) has been refused.
    I'm flabbergasted - truly I am. So, it looks like I'll now have to find another post which I can do on a 4 day a week basis.
    Isn't it amazing at the responses you get, especially when they've got medical evidence of your request and how they can happily ignore such evidence?
    GraceB
    Turn a negative into a positive!
  • wall1409wall1409 Posts: 294
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Its soo awkward, worry doesnt help arthur and only puts more stress on us. I work full time for local governemt, I have been allowed to work from home due to reduced mobility and because of tests I have needed, awaiting a second MRI via reumi. I wish I could reduce my hrs but financially I am stumped. I went into work for the first time in 4 weeks the other day and by 12pm I was shatterd and in so much pain. I cant drive now so my TL brought me in but I know I will eventually have to come into work on my own stead and am dreading it
  • GraceBGraceB Posts: 1,598
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
    Wouldn't it be nice if our line management could 'live our lives' for a couple of weeks so that they could see what a struggle daily life is for us? It might just make them realise (even a little bit) how much we achieve just by holding a job down and trying to shut the pain out.
    GraceB
    Turn a negative into a positive!
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