My colleague called me a 'burden' because I have endometriosis

DEAR DEIDRE: A COLLEAGUE said I’m a “burden” and should be fired over my chronic illness.

I was diagnosed with endometriosis five years ago and have been in and out of hospital ever since. I’m 27.

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My stepdad gave me a part-time job at the cafe he owns.

He’s been great about me taking last-minute days off and arranging shifts around doctor appointments.

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Last week I asked if I could swap a shift and my colleague blew up, saying: “Do us a favour and go on benefits.”

She’s been suspended but I’m worried they’ll just give her a warning and let her come back.

DEIDRE SAYS: It must have been very upsetting and hurtful when your colleague made these comments.

Acas (, 0300 123 1100) advises on workplace issues. And Citizens Advice also has lots of information on discrimination (

Talk to your stepdad about how this has made you feel. As your manager, staff wellbeing is his responsibility.

I’m sure if he knew how much this upset you, he would be willing to make changes.

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