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Workplace bullying(3 Posts)
For the past year I have been working with a woman who is very difficult She is not my superior but my role is a support role to her's (and others'). I've also been expected to be very active in training her as our manager lives across the country at our head office.
She is a very aggressive and obnoxious person, quick to lash out at others. Other people have complained about her but i'm the one that works the most closely with her. She frequently yells or snaps at me over mistakes she herself has made. She expects me to always clean up after her but if I ever question her to get clarification on what has happened that also annoys her. I will often get a snarky remark back to any questions I have if not outright anger. She doesn't learn quickly at all and seems to lash out in frustration and what she's not coping with/understanding.
Our manager has told me openly that she finds this woman annoying and knows she is difficult for me but i just must not take her remarks personally and that overall she is doing a good job.
I was even given a pay rise in recognition for the extra work I have put in trying to train her, knowing it hasn't been easy. So I have just tried to keep my head down and get on with it.
This week things came to a head when this co-worker asked me to do something. I responded with reasons as to why I was not able to do it but would be happy to do if given more information (basically she was expecting me to redo/fix up something she had already done but did not give me details on what she had done so far).
She sent a long complaint email to our manager and myself listing how high her workload is and how her family life is suffering due to her working too much. And she put quite a lot of the blame on me saying she had thought I was meant to help her but I argue with her about everything. She doesn't have time to negotiate everything with me and I should just think outside the box to figure things out.
I thought this was really insulting as she actually has relied quite heavily on my experience and I have fixed a lot of her mistakes.
She said at the end of the email that she does not know how to continue our professional relationship.
Our manager has now called a skype meeting with the three of us to discuss what is working/not working for us.
They don't know yet that I'm 13 weeks pregnant.
I have been thinking about it over the past couple of days and I have been thinking that the call won't help and I actually feel very bullied and stressed over the treatment I've had and I actually don't want to deal with it anymore. Especially while pregnant.
I was thinking about sending an email to them both prior to the meeting to say how bullied I have felt as I don't think it has been taken that seriously so far but not sure if it's worth rocking the boat. Should I just keep quiet and sit things out until maternity leave or say something now. They could maybe reshuffle the teams so we didn't work together but may not see it as worthwile when they find out I'm leaving soon. I don't even really want to have this call with her.
Just looking for advice as I'm getting very stressed by it.
i would deal with the announcement of you being pregnant as a separate but urgent matter, and it needs to be timed before the meeting with your manager and the co-Worker.
I would recommend you tell your manager that your are pg (including your dates), highlight that your health is suffering due to the worry and stress of how this co-worker has been treating you, and that she has been extremely difficult to work with for many weeks. Ask if, given the circumstances of her email where she states she doesn't want to work with you anymore, it might be better to allocate her to work with a different member of the team instead of you.
Turn the tables on the co-worker, she's the one being difficult not you, give the problem to your manager to resolve.
Try not to get sucked into her toxic accusations, don't defend yourself on anything, try to let it wash over. Don't deal with her lies and mistruths, there is no point. If your manager is in anyway switched on, they will know what she's like, so let her dig her own hole. Say as little as possible.
Bitchiness = Insecurity
This woman obviously has a lot of insecurities about herself and feels you activate those feelings in her, perhaps it's because she thought you would be beneath her as in her eyes you were there to help her and she needs this to make herself feel more important but unfortunately as she's slow at learning and not understanding everything she's feeling under you instead as she's having to ask you to rectify her errors.
Her frustration aimed at you is that you repeatedly reinforce feelings of inferior as she is still making mistakes and looking to you to fix it ie highlighting her errors in her eyes.
It's easy to say don't take it personally but I'll say it's more about her than you and how she feels about having someone more capable than her in a position she felt she was more important and she's ending up putting you down to bring herself up to standard.
It really is just her way of coping with insecurity, many many people behave like this.