Scared

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I work alone in the summer. An irate client scared me on the phone so badly I had to call 911. Then he called to say he was coming in to the office. I told him not to because I had already called the police. He showed up anyways. First he apologized for swearing at me and then proceeded to become enraged again.  He then left to scream at the preparer – at the courthouse where she is an attorney! She and I were terrified. Then the guy went to our main office and my boss told the cops she didn’t need them, called me back said eveything was fine, it was no problem for her and told me to just forget about him.

I talked with my friend last night. She has a permit to carry concealed and she put her gun back in her car. ( I know! Crazy! But I guess this is fairly standard when you prosecute dangerous criminals.)  Her husband took things very seriously. In a world where she works with the worst cases she was scared of this guy. We both felt the warning go off in our gut. We both recognized irrational behavior and how dangerous it is.

My boss on the other hand, is very flat with her feelings. She showed almost no emotion when her parents died. The staff problems do not impact her. We know this is just who she is.

I don’t know if I can continue to work for her. To have my fears so diminished. To no longer feel safe at work.

Today I will be home. My friend has to go back to prosecuting the bad guys. We are both scared.

Had my friend not shared the same feelings as me nor been willing to talk honestly about them I would have been drinking last night. I would have seen my bosses reaction and questioned my own reaction. Sobriety has me looking at my support system differently.

I now look for the right kind of people who support me. People who understand that it isn’t just – “well, just don’t drink if you have a problem.” Or ” just have one glass.”

If my boss doesn’t understand that warning feeling in the gut, I can’t look to her as the correct answer for my feelings. I can’t convince her. I can’t give her 300 examples of why it is different for me. If you haven’t truly felt….. addiction….or fear from an attack….or a warning in your gut….it is extremely hard to be empathic.

My best support comes from shared experiences. My friend and I will continue to talk and process our way through this. My boss may lose two wonderful employees who don’t appreciate having our feelings dismissed.

My boss now has him coming back in to work with her which means I may have to work with him if she’s not there. I don’t think so.

My fantasy ending – she should tell him that he disrespected and scared her staff. He is no longer welcome as a client.

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6 thoughts on “Scared

  1. Hug. That sounds awful. Take extra care of yourself. Especially with your safety.
    Could you tell your boss exactly what you wrote. Maybe she is scared too, but thinks she’s helping you by remaining calm. Maybe she’s on drugs. Maybe she was raised never to show feelings.
    Regardless, if voicing your needs and fears to her improves your work situation, it might be worth it.
    Otherwise, you need to do what’s best for you. A stressful and scary work environment is a horrible thought.

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    • Thanks for the hug! She is on mood stabilizing meds and yes she would think she is being helpful. She is a kind woman Just no empathy. I’m sitting with it all today. No actions. Just processing. I’m not ready to talk to her as I’m afraid all the little problems will also come out if I’m upset! Thank you for your perspective.

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  2. O. M. G. This just sounds downright awful. I’m so sorry you’re going through it :(. I had a similar situation happen at an old job of mine, although instead of an irate customer it was a co-worker of mine. I worked alone on midnight shift at the hospital and this man would call me after he’d been drinking – on the WORK phone during my shift. If I hung up on him he would call back and yell at me, sometimes while I was with a patient. The problem was, he was friends with our boss and when I eventually tried to report him, my boss made my life absolutely miserable for it.

    I guess what I’m saying is I understand what it’s like to be scared to go to work and have your fears trivialized by the one person who’s supposed to do something about it. I’m so angry for you, and I’m really hoping this all works out in the end. BIG hug to you. You’re in my thoughts today.

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