I honestly feel as though I’ve been threatened and I could not feel anymore undervalued in my job

I am en route home from a KIT day and I know when I get home I will burst into tears. I also have the worst stomach ache I’ve had in a long time (I suffer badly with these since my anxiety occurred). My stomach aches so badly I am convinced I am dying of a serious illness (part of my anxiety is health-related).

I have spent over a decade working my way up to senior management, I have always worked hard and been very passionate about my job. I also have a great record of results. I put my request in for flexible working in earlier this and although my employer was just within the time limit to respond, I never had any direct contact from my organisation despite e-mailing directly a number of times. In a nutshell, I was told my request would be denied until a later date when part-time can be accommodated. A number of senior members on my team are part-time or returning part-time after maternity leave. I offered solutions to various issues but no other options were explored eg. four days split over five. I’m also returning to a role where I am temporarily demoted.

I was recently informed that after further consideration and because of a mental health issue; postnatal depression for which I am in therapy and taking antidepressants, I also suffer quite extreme physical side effects to the depression.

Today I was told I was meeting with my boss. This was a meeting I was not prepared for. If I had any idea how difficult this meeting was going to be I would have requested for my line manager to also attend. I was told that the organisations point of view was that I was being offered flexible working due to my mental health issues and on no other condition, if other middle managers asked then it would be made clear that part time was granted because of my health, so as not to be seen as favouring the senior team! I was also told that my communication had been careless and unprofessional, this is despite having no direct contact back and waiting weeks and weeks for a meeting. I was told that I had obviously not read the compulsory documents. I thought I had but this would have been when I started a number of years ago and I had asked HR for next steps so assumed I was doing the right thing. I was told that my union were wrong and they had offered me terrible advice. They had said that I had not been offered the same conditions on return to work and a precedent had been set for immediate part time for senior managers. Lastly, I was told that during my maternity leave numerous complaints had been made against me and my professionalism! As I was clueless to what these are, I asked. I was told that I could not be told what these allegations are without launching a formal investigation. Therefore, I had two choices 1. Start afresh and ensure I am professional at all times or 2. Have the organisation conduct a formal investigation against me.

I honestly feel as though I’ve been threatened and I could not feel anymore undervalued in my job. It makes me really sad as I genuinely love what I do and I was excited to return to work. I now feel incredibly paranoid and that I’m being pushed out.

I have no idea how to move forward in my organisation. All I want to do is return to work and do a great job, be a good mum and also be as mentally and physically strong as possible. I feel so sad.


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