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Stress - how bad does it have to be?

(6 Posts)
meerkatt84 Sun 25-Jan-15 23:00:02

Hi all,
Without going into massive amounts of detail, I've been working for a boss who had become progressively more verbally abusive over the past 3.5 years. It started as things I could easily brush off as me beig over-sensitive, but it's developed to being more than just a 'mean boss'. He undermines everything I do, criticises (not constructively) every piece of work I complete (even when he has complimented the same piece of work privately to another male colleague). He talks to me differently to everyone else - he is hostile and rude, and on my first day back from maternity leave accused me of being 'unproductive' in comparison to other employees.
I have a diary of his behaviour which I have shown to HR but with only two months of my contract to work, while 13 weeks pregnant, I just don't want the stress of going through formal complaints about his behaviour and our latest confrontation.
However, I'm worried. I have suffered from severe morning sickness with each of my pregnancies (last throughout the 40 weeks) and this pregnancy has been better but I can tell a marked difference in how much I'm sick at the weekend vs a weekday. I'm violently ill every morning (and sometimes on the way to work too), I have trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep now as well. I'm hugely uncomfortable meeting him alone at work because of the aggression he displays and when I learnt he had a booked a meeting room last week for one of our meetings, my hands instantly erupted in a stress rash - tonnes of bright red itchy spots on the front and backs of my hands.

I feel fine at the weekends. I feel fine as soon as out of work for the day and I stay fine until about 9pm when I start thinking about the next day at work. But while I can deal with a couple of months of feeling anxious about work, I'm starting to get concerned over the physical reactions I'm now getting. The sickness and sleeplessness could be attributed to being pregnant, although they are much worse thn I've experienced before, but the stress rashes? I don't want my baby to be hurt because of this, but equally I don't want to turn up at the GPs and ask whether they think I'm 'stressed enough' to be signed off for some or all of my contract, only to be laughed away as some kind of chancer. It's devastating to me that I can't go to work and enjoy it - I love my job (excluding the boss), but I don't know how much more I can take.

MagpieCursedTea Sun 25-Jan-15 23:36:39

I really think you should pursue it with HR and also go speak to your GP. Even if you weren't pregnant I'd give you the same advice.
No one deserves to be treated like that.

BlinkAndMiss Sun 25-Jan-15 23:48:28

I've just posted something similar in Pregnancy, no one seemed to think there would be any adverse effects on the baby from the stress. I don't have the physical symptoms you have, well the itching, but I feel shaken and weak and can't stop crying at the thought of facing work at the moment. I have to keep going because the issue I have is an allegation and being off would look like I was guilty. I do feel better knowing that the baby won't be affected though.

This man does not sound like someone who should be a boss at all, how awful for you OP. You definitely need to pursue this with HR as it's bullying behaviour. If you go to your GP I'm sure you won't be looked on as a chancer, they're likely to be sympathetic to your situation.

I hope things get better for you soon.

GlitteryLipgloss Mon 26-Jan-15 16:23:06

You need to bite the bullet and show this piece of shit you aren't someone to mess with. Stand up for yourself and your baby! Go to HR and raise a formal complaint against the arseole!

autumnleaves123 Tue 27-Jan-15 12:18:37

Have you got a Union's membership? You're being bullied by this man and it needs to stop. I was bullied by nearly a year by nasty boss, and I had no choice but to go to the Union. They're better than HR as they will take your side 100 %.

confusedandemployed Wed 28-Jan-15 18:28:06

Stress? This isn't stress, it's bullying plain and simple. And potentially discrimination under the Equality Act. Nasty fucker, I hope you take him to the cleaners. I can imagine how you don't want the stress but it's galling to think that he might get away with it.

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