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The ow coming back into my life, Unintentionally.

(28 Posts)
Poppiesway Tue 15-Dec-15 06:05:37

Am just so full of anger and rage at the moment. I split with exdp 6 yrs ago after finding out (ow left me messages on the answering phone to tell me when she's given exdp an ultimatum to leave me and be with her or she would tell me) about his 2 yr affair. although exdp is no longer with the ow and has a new gf and ow is out of the scene she is back in to my life. As yet I don't think she knows.

She's pregnant. And I'm a sonographer. She appeared on my work list and I was just in shock and felt sick. of course I refused to scan her but I now have six months of hell at work while she's pregnant and I have to deal with her invading my workplace. No one at work knows why I split up with ex (it was before I was at that hospital) and I never had any intentions of telling anyone. But I know I cannot be civil to her and I will lose my calmness when she's there.
She harassed me for months when I found out and exdp left her and stayed with me, but we were over and I asked him to leave.

I just don't know how I'm going to avoid this woman. I know because of her history & age she will be requiring more scans and somehow I need to avoid her. The rage and anger has just flooded back and I'm scared of what I will do / say if she is near me. I've managed 6 yrs of not coming across her and now she's going to be there again.

Has anyone had to deal with an ow on a professional level?
I can't refuse to be on call just incase she comes in.. I can't refuse to work just in case. I'm thinking I need to book a days holiday when ever she's due her scans so I don't have to see her name on the list or bump into her.
I just feel sick. And full of hate again. Which I don't like.

Choughed Tue 15-Dec-15 06:27:09

I understand what she did was awful but six years is a long time to hold on to that rage. You can avoid her at work it seems, she's nothing to do with you anymore. Your reaction seems disproportionate.

Berthatydfil Tue 15-Dec-15 06:32:26

I'm sure that this kind of situation is not unknown in hcps.
There will be others who will probably say to you to rise above it be professional and put the patient first, however this person did cause you a lot of personal pain and I don't think you are being unreasonable to want to avoid her if at all possible.
Can you have a word with your supervisor/s or live manager. You don't need to go into great detail just say that this patient caused you a lot of personal pain (without giving details) in the past and you would appreciate it if your patient list could be managed so that you avoid her for the duration of her pregnancy.

PetShopGirl Tue 15-Dec-15 06:39:31

If it's making you this stressed then I'm all for avoidance. Is there not a system/precedent whereby you can avoid dealing with certain patients? eg I'm guessing it's not appropriate to see close family members? Would it help to have a word with your line manager and explain the situation? It can't be ideal for an ultrasonographer to be this distracted when trying to work, and I think most people would understand why you are.

PetShopGirl Tue 15-Dec-15 06:40:52

Cross post with Berthatydfil.

defineme Tue 15-Dec-15 06:50:10

I think if she harassed you for months then it's a reasonable reaction. Obviously don't treat her, but you might find you are okay with any accidental corridor passing etc. If it was really serious harassment, then perhaps a word with a sympathetic boss to say why you're worried.

Poppiesway Tue 15-Dec-15 06:56:06

I might be able to speak to my superintendent but really don't want to go into detail as to why I won't scan her. it's something I thought I'd got away and moved on from. I wasn't expecting to have her come into my life again and be in this situation. As much as I like my boss I know she's a gossip and is particularly close friends with another colleague so I know she would end up telling her. I don't think she would mean to but she would let it slip. She's terrible for it. I mean it in a nice way but it's well known if you want to keep something private you don't tell her lol. We're only a small team and work closely with each other.

Choughed, yes 6 years is a long time ago but what she did (I know it took exdp too) and how she went about it all just infuriates me. I wouldnt even be giving her a second thought now bar for having this hit me yesterday. It's just something I never imagined would happen to come across her again and be presented with her and have it all brought back.

mummytime Tue 15-Dec-15 07:07:27

I'd suggest that you tell your supervisor something general; like she harassed you or bullied you in the past.
I would also suggest that you get some counselling help - it is a problem if they are restricting how you live you life. What would happen if she started to work in your favourite shop?

VocationalGoat Tue 15-Dec-15 07:18:26

Yes, 6 years is a long time but honestly, one sight of that person and your heart is back in your mouth... it must bring back lots and lots of old pain, OP. Not the same thing, but I had a mother stalk me years ago, when DC1 (who will be 14 in a couple of months, was 5 until age 7-we finally moved away it all got too much).
She found me on Facebook and started sending me messages a couple of months ago and although it didn't stir me up too much, it definitely troubled me. But here's the thing, when DC1 was applying to Catholic secondaries around West/Southwest London, I was petrified he would end up in school with this kid again and the mother would be back on the scene. It goes to show, this stuff leaves a stain and a half. I was surprised a couple of years ago, how worried I was about this mother coming back into our lives should our sons end up at the same secondary school.

In your favour, unless this woman has issues with her pregnancy, you won't really see her at all: Two scans, three max and then she'll just be having her routine antenatal care. Even if she does have a difficult pregnancy, the amount of scanning will remain minimal. If your super is a gossip, don't breathe a word. Gossips have a lovely way of making sure you relive the stuff you so desperately want to forget. A gossip for a super is more dangerous than this OW coming into your life again. Any chance you can just say to a colleague, "Can you scan this lady for me? I know her personally- friend of a friend of a friend sort of thing- and it was under difficult circumstances we dealt with one another, which I won't get into." Perhaps you can swap patients with a colleague on the dates she's in?

PrettyBrightFireflies Tue 15-Dec-15 07:24:03

Does she know that you're a sonographer?

It's possible that she's already asked not to be treated by you?

VocationalGoat Tue 15-Dec-15 07:27:37

Even with pregnancy difficulties, she won't be getting loads of scans. I'm an older mum who had placenta previa in my last pregnancy and I have a significant history of 'stuff' but still, I wasn't given many scans (1 at 12 weeks which was done at 13-14 weeks because it was being combined with a CVS, number 2 at 20 weeks, and then again the last one was at 32 or 36 weeks- I can't remember exactly- to see if my placenta had moved up a bit, which it did, so no more scans).
Try not to worry about her invasion of your work space from this point of view. Especially if your based at a NHS hospital, she won't be indulged with a scan a month, I imagine.

Poppiesway Tue 15-Dec-15 07:37:18

thankyou for your replies.
Vocationalgoat, her ds is the same age as my ds, they went to nursery together.. (Affair wasn't at that time until her and ex worked together) when my ds went to school I was also worried they would go to the same high school. Luckily they changed our boundaries and they didn't have to go to the same school. I don't think she knows I'm a sonographer, I started my msc literally a month after I left Exdp. We have no mutual friends etc to tell her.

Yes a gossip can be as bad! I only told two close friends what was going on at the time we split up. One never mentions it the other will constantly talk about it and ask about ex and what he's doing. She even brought it up when we were out for dinner with another friend. I think the look on my face stopped her talking about it and she apologised afterwards.she knows I don't like to talk about it. But yes telling people is dangerous as they can't let it lie.

Talking it through with you all has helped me calm down a bit. Was just a shock I think. It did affect me badly at the time when all the lies that had been told and deceit came out. It's been a hard 6 years since and finally things start to sort out and she's there again. Maybe not intentionally but she's there.

If she worked in my favourite shop? I'd shop online.. I could avoid her easily as I have done all these years so far!

ohtheholidays Tue 15-Dec-15 07:51:38

Poppies like another poster suggested I second telling your superintendent that you can't scan that lady as she seriously harassed you in the past.You don't have to go into details,it's your business it has nothing to do with anyone else.

I'm sorry for all the crap your ex and her put you through.I hope things are alot better for you now.

Isetan Tue 15-Dec-15 12:51:49

Don't be too hard on yourself. I had a similar experience last year, where an event totally threw me over something I thought I was <<snaps fingers>> OVER! At that time, the event was going to become a frequent one and the strength of my response scared and annoyed me. When I relayed the incident to a friend, she just stared and said "Thank god! Finally, evidence that you are human".

So I cut myself some slack and the next time I was in the same situation, I was better prepared and even though I still wasn't comfortable, the shock that scrambled my brain the first time, was gone.

So my advice to you is, cut yourself some slack. The fight or flee response is the shock talking and it probably won't be permanent. If you want to get in front of your feelings, you could tell your boss that this woman had harassed you in the past and your giving her the heads up in advance.

Take a deep breath, the panic will subside and when this women becomes the past again, you will look back on this moment and think, tut 'I really am a badass'. fsmile

Kintan Tue 15-Dec-15 14:02:41

I agree with the poster who said to tell your supervisor that you were harassed/bullied by her in the past, and let your supervisor handle it - hopefully they will make sure you never have to deal with the OW in person.

FredaMayor Tue 15-Dec-15 15:37:07

OP, I'm not sure why you even have to ask this question. Anyone (I hope?) working in health care will know that all you need do is declare that you have a conflict of interest and that professionally you will not be able to work with the patient. Your professional body will state the exact terms in its code of ethics/code of conduct/professional guidelines. You are not required to state the reason if you wish it to remain confidential.

OP, you should know this. hmm

FredaMayor Tue 15-Dec-15 15:49:31

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

FredaMayor Tue 15-Dec-15 16:04:57

The following is copied from NHS England: Managing Conflict of Interest Statuary Guidance for CCGs, Section 13:

"A conflict of interest occurs where an individual’s ability to exercise judgement, or act in a role, is or could be impaired or otherwise influenced by his or her involvement in another role or relationship. The individual does not need to exploit his or her position or obtain an actual benefit, financial or otherwise, for a conflict of interest to occur."

As I said, I think you need to get this sorted. Be mindful that because of your non-declaration you are open to allegations from the patient as well.

SelfLoathing Tue 15-Dec-15 16:06:17

I agree with Freda Poppies

All you need to say is that you have a professional conflict of interest that you aren't able to go into for reasons of confidentiality so you can't "treat" her.

Keep it low key and none emotional. Imagine its some other non-emotional conflict in your head as you speak - like you are being interviewed by the police in connection with a fraud her husband is involved in. But anything that is non emotive to help give you the right tone.

Job done.

Poppiesway Tue 15-Dec-15 23:49:30

Yes Freda my post is genuine. I'm not a troll and have been here for many years since the cod and custard days.

I have previously been in a position where I have had to treat a family member whilst on call. When there is no one else I cannot justify standing there and refusing to scan her when they are asking for help. I have twice previously been called to resus to find my ex mil brought in by ambulance who then crashed and had to be resused in front of me and my dgp who had fell and was also brought in by ambulance. Being the only radiographer on call I had to treat them. But how I would be able to contain myself with her if she turns up whilst I'm on call I don't know. (Yes we perform an on all service for the CDS, a&e and wards for obs and Gynae )

It was a shock to discover I may be coming face to face with her again and having my emotions brought up again.

We are a small team in a small district hospital and don't want them to know what happened between the ex and I, it happened when I was in a different department and taking this job was a new start.

6 years on things are not better for us. Exdp has attempted suicide twice, has now been diagnosed as having bipolar disorder and has very little to do with the DC. these are things I have previously posted on mn about throughout the years.

FredaMayor Wed 16-Dec-15 08:34:31

OP, do you have a culture of non-disclosure in your workplace? Whatever the capacity of your service it is part of your duty of care to a patient to allow them informed consent when it falls within practice guidelines.

PrettyBrightFireflies Wed 16-Dec-15 08:56:01

i suspect the OW will be as unhappy about being treated by you as you are about treating her - especially if she is aware of the impact she had on you at the time. She is unlikely to trust the wellbeing of her baby to a woman she treated so badly.

As you have changed jobs since the affair, she is unlikely to know you work there - whereas you are forewarned.
If you want to keep your history quiet, you'll need to find a way of professionally avoiding treating her - otherwise, if you come face to face, she may well be so shocked that she tells all your colleagues why she doesn't want to be treated by you.

Suddenlyseymour Wed 16-Dec-15 13:31:46

Freda has it - the first thing that i thought was "conflict of interest", and i think i'd head down this route and disclose as little as possible / only what is necessary to your boss. Did you ever have police involvement?

ColdWhiteWinePlease Wed 16-Dec-15 13:49:30

If she's only going to have 2 or 3 more scans, can't you take a day off or even call in sick on those days? I totally understand why you wouldn't want to come face to face. I would hate to come face to face with Exh OW. I am now in a new town, and it's a relief knowing that I won't bump in to her whilst out shopping etc. flowers

Snowglobe1 Wed 16-Dec-15 13:50:22

Big hugs. I think...dare I say it...that this could end up being a good thing for you. It's not good to have these feelings still there...I would speak to your boss and explain, without going into details, that a conflict of interest means you can not treat this woman. If you see her and she recognises you, acknowledge her with a firm nod, and realise that she doesn't deserve all this headspace. Maybe this will catalyse you working through the feelings naturally, maybe counselling is in order.

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