Some of you might know that this past week I lost a job for not turning up for work. It had been my record of 6.5 days for 2008 – previous jobs were 4 days and 3 days respectively, so not a very good year. In 2006 I managed to work for 3 months and in 2007 I did approximately a month’s work.
I have decided to try to apologise to my former employer, because it was a family run firm who were employing me directly and they were actually quite nice people to work with. I had informed them about my condition and given them leaflets from the National Autistic Society, but I could tell that since they didn’t want me on a permanent basis (they wanted me to work shifts starting at 6am, which I could not get to without a car), that it would be difficult for them to be any more understanding and lenient towards my condition.
So this is my letter to them, tell me what you think….
Dear Mrs Shannon,
I would like to start by apologising for not turning up for work this last week and also for not calling in to tell you why I was not at work. I will try to explain my actions and hope that you can understand why. As you know I have Asperger Syndrome, when I was at work I know that I came across as a very confident person, however this exterior masks a person who wants to try, but is mostly lonely and misunderstood.
Working at Deltor was an enjoyable experience but very much a tiring one. Most nights when I got home from work I would take a nap for a few hours even before I had dinner, then sleep for 6-7 hours at night. Putting on such a confident facade is very tiring, but I knew that you did not want someone who kept taking time off. When I woke up on Wednesday morning I really wanted to go into work, but I felt so tired it was difficult to get out of bed. I realise I should have called in when I could, or answered your calls to tell you where I was. However, confrontation is a big issue for me and delaying things just made it worse. I was racked with guilt those days for what I had done, but my fear of confrontation made it very difficult for me to do anything about it. I was even scared to listen to the voice messages left for me.
I appreciate that by now you must be understandably very angry with me and I am not looking for any second chances, clearly the position at Deltor was not for me. I hope that I have not burned any bridges for anyone else with Aspergerâ€™s Syndrome or Autism who might seek to apply for employment with you in the future. Most of us are actually very reliable people, who just arenâ€™t very adept at communicating.
I would be very grateful if you could acknowledge this letter either by post or email so that I have something to show to the JobCentre as proof that I am no-longer working.
I would like to thank you for your time and understanding. Please pass on my apologies to my co-workers, especially Carole.