{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "My wife has had complications with her pregnancy recently, so I've been taking advantage of my unlimited PTO to stay at the hospital. My boss has begun complaining that it's been too frequent and the team needs me. How do I balance being there for my wife and my team?", "post_id": "615c619f273ac80029bcf693", "reply_count": 25, "vote_count": 11, "bowl_id": "55375ce690f5eebe1d2a0f88", "bowl_name": "Tech" }

My wife has had complications with her pregnancy recently, so I've been taking advantage of my unlimited PTO to stay at the hospital. My boss has begun complaining that it's been too frequent and the team needs me. How do I balance being there for my wife and my team?

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You choose your family, every time. Unless you don’t like them, then you choose work.

likeupliftingsmarthelpful

Because this isn’t PTO? Apply for the appropriate family leave so you can fully check out of work and focus on your family. Leave provides predictability for your team. Unplanned PTO is harder to work around.

likehelpful

Agree. FMLA is ideal. Hope your wife’s pregnancy goes smoothly🙏🏼

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You choose your wife every time. That said, you’re also a Manager, so you can imagine your Manager’s perspective. How many days are we talking? Have you considered taking a leave of absence or FMLA instead? As we all know unlimited PTO isn’t really unlimited, so I would say that more than 3 weeks merits a discussion.

likesmart

Unlimited PTO is a scam

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Well it’s a very important personal matter. Try setting expectations with your boss.

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Thank you very much everyone. I will try applying for family leave. This may definitely be part of the problem, but I won't pretend that my boss is being fair. Appreciate the support.

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I’ve never heard of truly unlimited PTO - just because those companies’ cultures are so focused on working non-stop and offer that for hiring. What about making yourself more available? While at the hospital, if you can spare time, still respond to emails to your team. Still focus on your wife, but maybe while she is resting, take 10 mins to answer a couple emails. Find a compromise. Without this PTO, you wouldn’t be able to be there for her with 100% pay. Try not to lose that perk. I’m not sure how FMLA works with unlimited PTO - talk to HR and see how that works. If you can take 1-2 months off with 100% pay, then do that instead.

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Have you actually discussed this with your boss or are you just using the PTO? If it’s so frequent that work is truly suffering, you should consider a short leave instead. That will give the company the ability to backfill you.

likesmart

Also worth noting that in cases like this, you want all this stuff “on the record” with your boss and HR.

likesmart

One of the downsides of unlimited PTO is that it is "by manager's approval" and if you don't have an understanding manager it can be hard. I had one friend who was getting calls from his boss while his wife was literally dying in the hospital. My wife has a long history of medical issues and I have spend countless hours in hospitals while she underwent treatments. My only advice is to bring your laptop with you to the hospital. There is a lot of time when you are just waiting, and it is a good chance to send emails, work on tasks, etc. You obviously cannot put in a full day, but that effort will carry weight with the rest of the team. Just make it clear that you are working under difficult circumstances, and that you will need to put down the laptop and tend to your wife, sometimes at short notice.

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Family first, in my opinion. Especially when it's your wife having complications with her pregnancy. If your manager can't understand that...well that's just inhumane

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In my company, they changed the name "Unlimited PTO" to "Open PTO".

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What about FMLA? You can apply and the company can retro the time you use…

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Yeah that's a good point. FMLA has been crucial for personal family situations as well.

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Unlimited PTO is not really unlimited. If you cant work from the hospital using the hospital wifi, then look into family medical leave. If are you able to log some hours in, work with your manager and see what is feasible. Are you able to log in hours here and there? Evenings? Weekends? If not, then it seems medical leave may be the best option.

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Is there ability to work while at the hospital so you’re working but just virtually?

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It's time to cultivate your number two.

Your family is always first!

Family is the priority. Decision will be yours and only yours. BTW: no one takes sabbatical quoting unlimited PTO. Work with your manager on how you can manage work w/o being thr 100% time.

Engage your HRBP to understand what's appropriate. Unlimited PTO should mean unlimited, but your HRBP will know the "terms and conditions" and can advise the most appropriate combination of leaves to cover you.

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