A young man took to Reddit to ask for opinions after he nearly caused his coworker to pass out by checking his blood sugar at his desk. Here is the full story of the situation that’s on the verge of becoming a full-blown workplace controversy.
He Has Type 1 Diabetes
OP is a 24-year-old man who works with two colleagues, a 25-year-old woman and a 23-year-old man. They all get along well, and OP really likes his job.
OP is a type 1 diabetic, and he needs to test his blood sugar several times throughout the day to make sure he’s safe. The process is quick and easy, but it does involve pricking his finger to draw a drop of blood.
Recently, OP was checking his blood sugar in his own private office, as is his common practice. Just as the drop of blood appeared, his male coworker stepped through the doorway to talk about a project.
The other young man was new to the team and was unaware of OP’s condition. When he walked up and saw what OP was doing, the coworker turned pale and looked like he was going to pass out.
His Coworker Is Going to Therapy Over His Phobia of Needles
OP asked his coworker if he was OK, and the young man said he had a severe phobia of needles and blood. It was so bad, he said, that he was going to therapy to help cope with it.
OP explained about his diabetes and the need to check his blood sugar frequently, hoping that talking about it would help his coworker.
Instead, the other man told OP that it was “freaky” that he had to prick himself several times a day.
The coworker went on to suggest that OP needed to hide what he was doing better. He suggested that OP limit himself to testing early and late in the day, and maybe at lunch.
He Needs To Check His Blood Sugar Levels Often
But OP explained that changes to his blood sugar weren’t that predictable. He needed to check his levels whenever he started to feel off one way or the other.
Then the coworker suggested that OP should only check his blood sugar in the restroom. But OP doesn’t like to do that, since it’s unsanitary. He also doesn’t think he should have to leave his office to tend to his own needs.
OP offered to warn his coworker if he heard him walking toward his office while he was checking his blood sugar. But the young man said just knowing what OP was doing might cause him to panic.
At an impasse, OP’s coworker said that he was going to HR to tell them about the situation. He was also going to tell them that OP refused to compromise.
And That’s Perfectly Reasonable
OP can’t understand what the big deal is since his coworker can’t see him testing unless he actually walks into OP’s office. It seems to him that the solution is for the young man to not enter his office unannounced.
OP is considering going to HR before his coworker does, but he really doesn’t want to make a big deal out of the situation. He wants to get along with his new colleague but doesn’t want to change how he tests his blood sugar.
Reddit commenters mostly support OP in his position. They think that checking his blood sugar in his own office is perfectly reasonable.
Both Employees Should Be Accommodated for Their Needs
Many suggest that the coworker should simply call OP before he pops into his office. That way OP can just say he’s busy if he doesn’t want a visitor for any reason, including the finger prick.
Some HR professionals also checked in to say that both employees should be accommodated for their needs. They urge OP to go to HR with his coworker.
So, what do you think of this story?
Should OP change his behavior to avoid making his coworker uncomfortable?
Or is OP justified for wanting to check his blood sugar in the privacy of his office?
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / TimeImage Production. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.