This question is incredibly relevant to a large number of people. How do you properly communicate when you need to take a emergency absence so that your private business does not become the subject of office gossip?

No it is not an easy solution and certainly not all companies will treat it the same way but we should be able to provide a basic answer that will suffice for most situations, and will give a base starting point for those exceptional situations.

1 Answer 1


While I think there may be a question in there somewhere, I don't think the question is yet in a state for reopening. Some issues:

  • Why do the poster and their partner(?) need to take sick leave together?
  • Why do holidays need to be taken "immediately"? These are planned events.
  • The question and the title are badly disconnected. The title is about an immediate need for leave, but the question is about privacy. What's the actual question here?
  • 3
    It's also not clear why they become the "talk of the company". Is their relationship a secret at work? If they are known to be in a relationship and living together, it shouldn't be surprising to coworkers that they often take leave together.
    – David K
    Aug 11, 2016 at 15:58
  • I missed that part initially... now I guess I think I see the problem. I assume in this context it is the European version of holiday (Vacation in the US). I did revise the title to remove the immediately. Aug 11, 2016 at 16:01
  • While I agree the question can be improved drastically, I'm not sure that we need to know these details. Personally, I think the question would be vastly improved by removing most if not all of the background.
    – Lumberjack
    Aug 12, 2016 at 15:08
  • I tried for an edit, but it is beyond my skills. I'm sorry.
    – Lumberjack
    Aug 12, 2016 at 15:15
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    The biggest problem I can see is that it is really two issues rolled into one. We have a workplace relationship that is generating office gossip, and we have an informal environment where the CEO is often second guessing peoples PTO. Communicating differently won't resolve these issues IMHO.
    – Lumberjack
    Aug 12, 2016 at 15:17
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    I think the bottom line here is that this isn't a question we as the community can rescue - it needs input from the original poster and they're probably long gone by now. Aug 12, 2016 at 20:28

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