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Advice please - Christmas, work and caring - Carers UK Forum

Advice please - Christmas, work and caring

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Hi,
I was hoping someone might be able to give me a bit of advice. I'm about to start an unpaid job placement as part of my studies, and have found out that I'm expected to be working right up until Christmas Eve. The problem is that I'm also a carer for both my Mum and my brother. Now most of the time we can manage with me being away during the week (my weekends are unbelievably hectic as I try and pack in a week's worth of... well, everything), but I know that I won't be able to organise Christmas just during the weekends. I don't think my employers will look very favourably on me if I ask for Christmas Eve off, even though they aren't actually dependent on me being there. In fact, I know that they can manage perfectly well without me. But my family can't. I just don't know how to approach my supervisor in a way that she'll be understanding. The last thing I want is to get a bad review, as my future career depends on this job.
Any ideas please? Thanks in advance!
a very stressed Cakemaker Image
No. 1 - don't stress out about it, it will all work out somehow!

Trying to think with my 'supervisory' head on (tho' it is a long time since I supervised anyone at work);
a) Don't ask about time off in your first day or two there (you knew that anyway, didn't you?)

b) Spend the first week or so getting to know people - maybe ask them how they get on with the supervisor, get a feel for what sort of person they are, what times are best to speak to her.

c) Accept that there are some things you won't be able to do this Christmas. Decide what you can manage without. Not everything you usually do is essential for a good holiday, so decide what is most important, drop the rest.

d) Spread out what has to be done over the time between now and Christmas, wherever possible, so it is in lots of small chunks of time instead of a few big ones. If necessary, ask your supervisor if you can leave early (say 1 hour) one or two days a week. Explain why, when there are (presumably) other people with family responsibilities working there, it is not possible for you to cope with Christmas preparations, when they do. It is not unusual for people to have a little time off here and there to do Christmas shopping.

Remember, the supervisor does not want you to be so stressed out you cannot do what you are there for. If she is any good at all, she will recognise that you must be well-organised and hard-working to have got to this point at all. You never know, she may be/have been a carer herself, there are possibly other carers (albeit less heavily loaded than you) working there.
I am sorry but i would say make it clear up front what you will need to do over the xmas period after all you are working unpaid. If the company are expecting to cover for paid staff with yourself that is just not on.
dont forget if you "work" as a santa in the big department stores you can earn over the £105 per week ... as long as baron hard up osborne does not find out ....
Oh dear - now I'm definitely confused! Image
I've wondered whether to tell them up front - if I know that there's a problem, surely I should tell them straight away?
But at the same time, I don't want to make a terrible impression before I've even started!
I think if I had children I wouldn't be in this position - I'm certain they'd make allowances. Caring for adults just doesn't get the same consideration Image
Would it be too obvious just to pull a sickie? Image
*waves at Audrey*
Are you sure? Christmas isn't a common time for sickies is it? Image
Urgh, I just don't know what to do!!!
Id be honest with your supervisor. Ask to have an informal chat, explain your situation and explain that although you dont want to mess them about you have certain obligations to your family. DONT pull a sickie they would never believe you Image
I'd be straight with them and explain the situation.
Be honest with them from the start: it'll only make it easier in the long run, no matter what the result - because you'll know where you stand.
Just move Christmas to a more convenient time for your family, such as the 12th-17th January or any other date that suits. If you are a real Christian/historian, you will know that Jesus wasnt actually born at Christmas anyway - more like March, the Vatican just moved the official birthday to try to take over the ancient Pagan festival of the New Year/winter solistice. Its pathetic really, I have no idea why we all respect this piece of spin when we all know it doesnt fit the facts.