I work at this great company since May. I am still a new guy there, but despite that the bunch is just super cool.

Unfortunately yesterday my fears were kind of validated, my mother who has affective bipolar disorder, that she stopped taking her prescription meds. Seems for a longer time. She lives alone, because she explicitly told me I would never live with her, and also the thing is she refuses to move to my apartment for the time being. We live 50km apart from each other, so 1 hour drive, give or take, one way.

Now unfortunately I have to somehow bring her in to see her psychiatrist. But I am afraid to tell my boss and also I do not know if I should tell the boss why I need the leave, or that my mother is mentally ill. Unfortunately from where I come from, the legislation for someone to be admitted to the facility makes it an uphill battle. I am afraid also this might be a recurring thing with my mother if she is not admitted straight away. The only problem is, unfortunately, my own health is quite declining as well (epilepsy, gastrointestinal issues, and orthopedic stuff), and I already had a lot of free days, and will have more to tend to my health as well.

I am quite hopeless. My mother is a ticking time bomb. She is a great person, heart of gold, but unfortunately at the age of 51 she is also seriously sick. I don't know when she loses her "cool" like yesterday, and when she does, I have to go home. But I am afraid this will be to my works detriment.

How would you deal with this at work? And would you tell your boss that your mother has bipolar disorder? Or is it too much info for the employer?

edit: I live in slovakia but work full remote for a German company.

  • 2
    Would you mind adding to your question where you are located? It certainly depends on your jurisdiction if and under what circumstances you are entitled to sick leave when a relative is ill. Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 6:49
  • 1
    Hey, sorry to hear what you're going through. What country is this in? Rules may vary on what position it would put you in. Also some details like if you're still on a probation period or whether you can do your work remotely as an option would be useful. Did you disclose any of your health issues to your employer already? Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 6:53
  • I am living in slovakia but working full remote for a getman company
    – Citrus
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 8:15
  • also my health issues are fully disclosed to employer, but at the time of my hiring wverything was fine with my mother fortunately
    – Citrus
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 8:16

1 Answer 1


Ask your boss for emergency 1:1 and say (don't need to go into too many details):

Hi. My mother is in some medical condition that requires my help. I will need to be away from work for X days starting Y. The status of my current tasks is ABC, is there someone you like me to hand it over to?

  • 6
    OP, you are afraid of talking to your boss. Your boss would most likely be shocked if you didn't help your mother, just because you are afraid talking to him. If your "boss" is your supervisor or manager and has forgotten how to be a human being, his boss would likely be shocked.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 10:28
  • thanks for help. You are right I was afraid to talk to my boss because from where I come I had a real bad luck on bosses who were just oriented at KPIs and whatnot, so they saw every medical issue as a huge minus
    – Citrus
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 13:45
  • 5
    In that case, you'd start hunting for a job with a company run by humans. Plus, it's huge stupidity of your manager. Even from a purely profit driven manager's point of view, giving you a few days off (likely unpaid time off, or paid holiday, so little real cost), will give them huge benefits some time later when they need you to do something for them and you remember how the company helped you out.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 14:52
  • no no, this job is really the best one I have so far. I told the HR manager and she handled it really nice
    – Citrus
    Commented Jul 18, 2021 at 23:04

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