Go to work or stay home?
March 1, 2009 8:52 AM   Subscribe

Flufilter: It hit me like a freight train on Friday-went to the doc, and yes, it's the flu. My question for the hivemind is this: Do I try to go back to work tomorrow?

I think my fever finally broke today but I still feel like I was hit by a truck. OTOH I do have a scheduled day off Tuesday so even if I work tomorrow and then feel worse I have a day off to look forward to. OTOH I don't want to give this to anyone else at work-particularly my boss who is having outpatient surgery on Wednesday.

What is a conscientious employee to do??? (and it's a long story but I was rushed out of my doc's office on Friday because of another patient's emergency so it isn't like I got to ask them. Plus today is Sunday.)

(If it matters-I work at a florist shop. So that means contact with the public. )
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies to Health & Fitness (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Do you feel like you want to go to work? No? Stay home.

This shouldn't have to be asked.
posted by dunkadunc at 8:54 AM on March 1, 2009

don't make everyone else sick too. stay home. I surely wouldn't want to buy flowers from someone with the flu.
posted by mrg at 8:57 AM on March 1, 2009

This is your answer:

The period when an infected person is contagious depends on the age and health of the person. Studies show that most healthy adults may be able to infect others from 1 day prior to becoming sick and for 5 days after they first develop symptoms. Some young children and people with weakened immune systems may be contagious for longer than a week.

I would say the answer should be no.
posted by snowjoe at 8:57 AM on March 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

Thanks all....

(Krrlson, it is kinda really mean to be snarky to a sick person.)
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 9:08 AM on March 1, 2009

SAotB - Stay home. If you don't rest, then you end up with rebound sickness. Rest, fluids and crappy Lifetime Women's Network movies until Wednesday.

Krrrlson - you can never go wrong with boot and hotpants.
posted by 26.2 at 9:08 AM on March 1, 2009

Dear Boss of St. Alia of the Bunnies,

Please excuse St. Alia from work today. She has the flu. Not only will she avoid spreading this awful illness among your customers, but she'll avoid giving it to you and extending her own illness. As a small business owner who really can't afford to be sick, I'm sure you appreciate this. In addition, by staying home, she may avoid costly mistakes involving expensive flowers and fragile supplies. Finally, she'll avoid all your customers seeing, hearing, and experiencing an unhealthy person in your shop and either worrying for her or for themselves, rather than focusing on the beauty of your shop's creations.

Thank you so much for your understanding. I know this will be a huge inconvenience for you, but I hope that this will be mitigated by her contacting you today well in advance of tomorrow's work day. I also hope that this inconvenience will be small in comparison to the problems that could be caused by her actually showing up.

With luck, she'll be back on Wednesday. One of us will call Tuesday if she hasn't started feeling better by then.

Amtho of the Web

Dear Amtho and St. Alia,

Thank you for your timely and insightful note. Of course she should stay home! I understand completely. Your reasoning is impeccable, as usual, but simple human compassion dictates that I'd want her snug in bed. I only wish I could bring over some soup, but it's true that I'll be working extra hard myself. This sort of thing happens and as an (I hope) well-organized boss, I have a contingency plan.

Get well, St. A! We'll be thinking of you and won't bother you. Don't worry about us.

The Boss You Wish You Had
posted by amtho at 9:09 AM on March 1, 2009 [7 favorites]

(actually, amtho, other than the fact she will most likely let out a long sigh, she really is an understanding good boss.)
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 9:22 AM on March 1, 2009

St. Alia, I think you got your answer on the staying home thing (especially in a job where you deal with the public). I have a bad cold myself right now so sympathize. From one sick person to another - stay home, get plenty of rest, drink plenty of fluids ... and chicken soup is good for you any time. Feel better.
posted by gudrun at 9:32 AM on March 1, 2009

FWIW, going to work is going to mean that you're going to be spending precious energy that your immune system could use in Operation Flu-Be-Gone on, well, working. In my experience it takes me a hell of a lot longer to get over an illness if I keep working through it. This isn't a big deal when the illness concerned is a common cold... for the flu...

If you don't want to be *forced* to call out again when your symptoms return and you can't get out of bed, stay home on Monday! Feel better!
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:02 AM on March 1, 2009

From a boss' point of view, I'd much, much rather that employees stay home and get better, first of all because I care that they're not feeling horrible, and second, because it's far easier to have one person out for a day or two than it is to have them come in and infect everyone else.

Like everyone above has said, do stay home. Would it help to think of it as another form of conscientiousness?

Feel better :) The flu is the pits.
posted by corey flood at 10:06 AM on March 1, 2009

Ick! No! I don't want your cuties! Moreover, once you get there, you're probably going to puke or faint. It's amazing how much just standing on your feet for 1 hour can tucker you out when you're all weak and whatnot. STAY HOME AND REST AND DRINK PLENTY OF LIQUIDS!
posted by cachondeo45 at 10:21 AM on March 1, 2009

It's going to annoy some folks to hear this, but for me the key question is "Are you on an hourly wage?" I make sure to wash my hands a lot when I suck it up and go to work with the dregs of a cold or flu, but unless I'm totally knocked out, I go in to earn my hourly pay. If I don't get sick days, I damn well am gonna show up when I'm mildly sick.
posted by mediareport at 10:21 AM on March 1, 2009

Mediareport, I made enough overtime during the Valentine's Day business that I can afford to be out now. I haven't even picked up last week's paycheck. (Now it does suck that my extra pay is all going to doctors, medicine and making up for lost time, but it beats the alternative.)
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 10:51 AM on March 1, 2009

"Oh, honey, how romantic! A bouquet of influenza!"

Switch shifts with whoever's in on Tuesday. If you do end up working with the flu (please don't though), you should wear a surgical mask to help contain the ick.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:12 AM on March 1, 2009

Just called the boss and let her know I wouldn't be coming in-she totally agrees with my decision. Not even a long sigh!

Thank you all for helping me see common sense.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 2:20 PM on March 1, 2009

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