This is in the state of Texas, which I believe is an at-will state. The company gives 10 sick days, plus 10 vacation days. Pretty awesome.
My wife works about 4 months out of the year(Jan-April). During that time, if our daughter is sick/has appointments or anything like that, I use my days to take care of her. Not to mention if I get sick, or other emergency arises, I use my days.
In the last two years, I've used about 8-9 days of sick and 8-9 days of vacation by June/July. After this happened the first time, I was talked to by the new project manager because there was a concern I may need to take unpaid time off, and that would affect insurance and other benefits and such. I've never, in fact, used more than the days allotted.
Now, this year, it occurred again. This time, I explained to my project manager the reasoning behind it, and she seemed okay with this. My project lead has never had a problem with my taking the days, nor has he ever had a problem with my work. He always let me know I was doing good, and the only time I missed a deadline was when the requirements changed 2 days before the deadline.
All that said, the project manager let me go with the claim that it was a "pattern of unsatisfactory work performance." I guess my question is, when the inevitable question of "What caused you to leave your last position?" comes up, how best can I frame this? I obviously don't want to lie to a potential employer, but I also want to get ahead of my former employer saying I was fired for unsatisfactory work performance, when in actuality, my work performance was never in question.