General Etiquette > All In A Day's Work

Now She Thinks I'm A Leper

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--- Quote from: sweetonsno on December 07, 2012, 04:39:40 AM ---Turning your monitor to face away isn't a bad idea.

My guess is that she's worried that you are sick. I think most people try to avoid getting ill, and that means avoiding folks who have symptoms. It's great that you use the hand sanitizer and make an effort to move away from the shared space when you need to blow, but as you know, coughing elsewhere doesn't necessarily mean that a person isn't distributing germs. If she thinks you're sick, moving away to blow is only going to make her relax somewhat. I suggest appealing to authority in this case. Let her know that your doctor has assured you that you are not contagious. If you can give more information (say for example, "My doctor said that I was probably contagious for the first day or so but that I've been 'clean' since Sunday at the latest"). That's probably the most you can do to get her to stop worrying about getting sick.

It could also be that she's annoyed at your noises. (Understandable.) There isn't much to be done about the sniffling and sneezing, but if it's happening a lot (more than a couple of times an hour), I think you should try to manage your symptoms a bit. If the dry office air bugs your sinuses, maybe keep a cup of hot tea nearby so the steam is soothing. If you have a tickly throat, maybe slippery elm lozenges or tea would help. Maybe your doctor has a suggestion. If it's very sporadic (once or twice an hour), I think your current course of action is fine. Maybe get some earbuds or headphones so you can block out her comments.

--- End quote ---

This.  Unless you have been to the doctor for this specific outbreak and had cultures done, you don't know for certain that you are not contagious. 


--- Quote from: Deetee on December 06, 2012, 06:33:49 PM ---While she is being annoying, I would not call this harrassment and perhaps you could try a little harder to alleviate her (annoying concerns). If this is a sinus infection, is it not contagious? If you aren't ill, I suggest you keep repeating that "I am not ill or or contagious. I have winter allergies but it's nothing I can pass on to anyone else and I don't feel bad so there is no reason for me to head home.

--- End quote ---

A bacterial sinus infection will not be contagious.  A bacterial infection is like falling down and scraping your knee and it ends up getting infected.  No one will catch your infected knee.  I get bacterial sinus infections without even getting colds because of the shape of my sinuses.  They're dreadful for me, but not a danger to anyone else.

A VIRAL sinus infection is contagious just like many other viruses.  Viral sinus infections can be part of many colds.  Colds are contagious.  But unless the sinus infection is viral (in which case most people just call it a cold), it is not congatious.

TBH, the conversation between OP and Annoying Coworker seems pretty typical.

She asks if you are okay and suggest you might be more comfortable at home. You say you are fine and not contagious.  Obviously she doesn't like being around sick people but so long as you aren't contagious and so long as you've been cleared by a doctor, you are fine to stay.  If you were contagious and were still at work, then you'd be rude. 

But I don't see either one of you as rude based on the conversation in your OP.


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