Woman’s boss asks her ‘not to abuse’ PTO. She’s only taken 5 days off

@laynemaynee/TikTok Norhisamudin/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘I went to a funeral. … I visited my dad in the hospital. … I had the flu’: Woman’s boss asks her ‘not to abuse’ PTO. She’s only taken 5 days off

'Time to find a new boss.'


Kahron Spearman


Posted on Mar 29, 2024   Updated on Mar 29, 2024, 10:05 am CDT

In a candid TikTok clip that has resonated with over 460,000 viewers, Layne (@laynemaynee) unveils a concerning dialogue with her boss regarding paid time off (PTO).

She recounts, “My boss just reminded me not to abuse PTO. ‘Cause so far this year, I’ve used five days, which I guess is a lot.” She elaborates that her PTO usage included attending a funeral, visiting her hospitalized father, recovering from the flu, and spending time with her son during spring break. This narrative sheds light on the personal significance behind each PTO request and questions the corporate culture surrounding time off.

One person exclaimed, “There’s no abusing pto. It’s yours. Leave that company.”

“PTO is part of your compensation just as much as salary or wages,” another person stated. “Time to find a new boss.”

“Sir, you’re lucky I even told you I’d be out,” a more cavalier commenter said.

“Email your boss and ask for clarification on what constituents’ abuse’ of PTO,” another commenter recommended. “Cc HR. HR isn’t there to help you, but include them on your paper trail.”

Layne’s experience underscores a pervasive issue in the American workforce, where employees are often discouraged from utilizing their rightfully earned paid time off. A survey by GfK for the U.S. Travel Association reveals more than 40% of employees with paid time off benefits use only some of their allocated time. Monster.com highlights the counter-productivity of this trend, noting that not taking enough time off can lead to decreased productivity, creativity, and overall safety on the job. Chronic workaholics risk burnout, ultimately costing companies more recovery time than if PTO were taken as needed.

@laynemaynee Employee of the month, i can feel it. #corporatelife #latestagecapitalism #distopian #thisisthebadplace ♬ original sound – Layne

Replicon.com points to a survey report from IPX1031, stating that the utilization of vacation days in the U.S. is at a 40-year low, with Americans giving up approximately 169 million PTO days annually. This forfeit amounts to about $52.4 billion in lost benefits. Fear of returning to a mountain of work and concerns over being seen as replaceable are among the top reasons employees forego their vacation days. Moreover, Fortune.com highlights that nearly 80% of workers feel guilty about taking PTO, often working more before their leave and staying connected during their time off due to fears related to job security and workload.

@laynemaynee Replying to @Bob Barker ♬ original sound – Layne

Encouragingly, some employers are beginning to address the stigma of taking time off. Employers can enhance employee satisfaction and productivity by fostering a workplace culture that values breaks, recognizes mental health, and effectively manages workloads. The dialogue initiated by Layne’s TikTok is crucial in challenging and changing the narrative around PTO, urging a shift toward a more supportive and understanding workplace environment regarding the need for personal time off.

The Daily Dot reached out to @laynemaynee via TikTok comment for more information.

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*First Published: Mar 29, 2024, 11:00 am CDT