Manners Matter: Sick Days

Dear Mary Pat,

My husband insists on going to work even though he has a bad cold, possibly the flu. He worries about how it looks to his boss if he isn’t there. I think his boss would prefer that he stay home and get better and keep his coworkers from getting sick. He thinks if he just powers through it’s better. He also thinks going to the doctor is a waste of time. Help!


Help Me Help Him See Reason

Maplewood, Wis.


Dear Help Me Help Him See Reason,

This is a particularly bad year for the flu and it’s nothing to discount. I’m sure his boss would prefer that he stay home, especially if he can work remotely for just a little bit. The most important thing is for him to sleep and to stay hydrated. Also make sure that he doesn’t have a high fever. If he isn’t careful it could easily turn into pneumonia and then he’d really be out of work for a long time.

If he goes to the doctor early when his symptoms are just starting, they might be able to prescribe an antiviral medicine that will help nip the flu before it gets worse. At the very least, have him call and talk to a nurse. And if he won’t, you should. Then call his boss for him and stress that he won’t be able to make it into work since he’s very sick. If your husband is relatively healthy then he will recover sooner than later. However, there are people that he might come into contact with who are more vulnerable. Does your husband want to spread the flu and make others sick? I’m sure he doesn’t. And if he does have to venture out into public to go to the doctor’s office, make sure he wears a mask and washes his hands continuously.

This goes for everyone. If you think you might be contagious, stay home.


Mary Pat

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