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weewaffle
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xx I need work advice
« Thread started on: Sep 19th, 2014, 02:30am »

So I'm a bit distraught due to the situation I am about to describe, and I am brand new to this forum/forums in general, but I thought I'd just throw this out there and see what the internet has to say.

So. I have been at my current job for about 4 or 5 monthsish, and there is one coworker who has always made me at least a little bit uncomfortable. When I first started, she was very nice and supportive, and in general she is usually pretty nice and supportive, but she is also very INTENSE and soon I realized that she is also highly reactive and can turn around and be aggressive/mean/rude at the drop of a hat. I was increasingly uncomfortable around her due to various goings on, such as for example (I will call her Angie):

Angie asked a different coworker, alias Amy, a simple question. Amy answered "no." Angie responded "you getting an attitude with me?" Amy thought Angie was joking, and she answered jokingly, "Are YOU getting an attitude with ME?" "Look, is there a problem?" Angie said, clearly not at all joking, "Cause just tell me if there's a problem." I stood on the sidelines while she kept doing that for a bit, emphatically repeating "There's no problem. No one has an attitude. There is no problem." She spent the rest of the night going on about what a bitch Amy was (I have known Amy for years, she does not have a bitchy bone in her body) and talking about how she was going to email our boss about her (which she did). I gently defended Amy, which seemed to piss Angie off even more. This is just one example of her behavior. More recently, she flipped on me (stopped talking to me or looking at me, walking way out ahead of me, slamming doors, etc.) and I couldn't think of a possible reason why.

I decided to talk to our boss about her the next day.

Angie found out that I talked to our boss about her (I can only assume that my boss had some kind of conversation with her about one of the above circumstances or others that I brought up, and that Angie was therefore easily able to deduce that I talked to the boss about her).

So today she and I were the only ones working, and she was a cold be-otch to me all night (at this point, I only suspected that she had found out, I did not know for certain. The last time we had worked together she had spent ten minutes in the boss's office then stormed out crying and disappeared for an hour and a half, which is pretty typical behavior for her), and made a few passive-aggressive comments making it pretty clear that she knew what was up. I spent the entire night with elevated blood pressure and a dry mouth, and I'm pretty sure I am not sleeping tonight any time soon.

At the very end of the night, it came out in a more obvious way. She basically told me the following things more or less verbatim: "I will never trust you again. We can work together and I won't be actively mean to you [she'd been spending the whole night being pretty god damn salty with me at least] but I won't ever help you out or have your back. You and I will never be cool." I said, in the most neutral tones, "do you want to talk about it?" and she said no; and, "do you want to try to be cool?" And she said no.

So I have made an enemy. I have always had problems with negative self image and self-deprecatory tendencies, I was fairly miserable in high school and college. I feel like I've improved vastly and have been doing excellent the past few years--I feel like a normal person finally. This situation is making me question: now that I am normal, am I also awful? Did I do something slimy and snakey and bad? How bad was it? Can my soul recover? I have an enemy now; do I deserve it? Was talking to my boss, in fact, a very stupid thing to do? Well, that I'm pretty sure I know the answer to. I guess just because it was stupid strategically doesn't mean it was wrong morally, but I'm having a pretty hard time with this situation emotionally.

I want to call my boss tomorrow and tell her exactly what happened today, and ask her to do her best not to schedule me to work with Angie alone because while I was uncomfortable before, I am now like ten times as uncomfortable. My boss is not in the office tomorrow, but she said she is available for "sick calls and other urgent matters." Should I wait until next week to talk to her instead, even though I know she will probably be working on the schedule over the weekend? Or should I not talk to her at all and just swallow my bitter pills or whatever the expression is and live with the monster I've created?

Advise me, internet!!!

Thank you for reading this novel, whoever you are!
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morrowrd
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xx Re: I need work advice
« Reply #1 on: May 22nd, 2015, 05:15am »

I would stop bothering your boss, this is your problem. One thing you're going to have to learn about the work environment is that you aren't going to get along with everyone. Another thing you are going to need to start doing is working on your "fragileness" - your self esteem shouldn't hinge on whether or not you get along with co workers. (will come back to this)

"Angie" is fragile herself, and volatile. Don't blame yourself for how things are between you two because it was destined to happen no matter what. She's never been your friend, all that kindness and support in the beginning was very conditional, it was there provided you behaved the way she wanted. Since you broke her "rules", she blackmailed you. Groveling only will make her respect you less. Heres some advice, shut up and work. Stop worrying about making friends, stop being wimpy about confronting. Learn to get along with co workers in the sense of being a team player with getting the job done. If Angie was being a drama queen (which she was doing) and attacking a co worker, if it was affecting your work environment negatively, causing you challenges for getting things done that you're being paid to do, confronting is the right thing, the responsible and mature thing anyone would do. Confront, and don't f'n worry about the consequences. So what if she doesn't like you, she'll get over it.

Back to you, the world responds to your behavior. Walking around with your head down in low self esteem will normally not get you sympathy. We all have the responsibility to fix ourselves, and some of the best counselors on earth are role models. Pick one, and ask yourself, "what would so & so do or say in a situation such as this one?" And then follow through...

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