Via Daniel Ream, an article sharing horror stories of workplace bullying. Here’s the first:
My manager/direct supervisor would constantly comment on my food choices (fruit has too much sugar), my body (my arms were too toned), and my clothing choices (the shoes I wore looked like nurses shoes). She’d constantly tell me I dressed like a granny, and ridicule me for anything and everything. She once told me I was “too big” for a work shirt and gave me one once she felt I had lost enough weight.
I was repeatedly laughed at and called the “B” word by some of my co-workers. When I brought it to the attention of two of my supervisors, they did nothing. They didn’t even acknowledge the email that I sent them. … Nothing was said to my co-workers who were sitting around gossiping and allowing the bullying.
I was placed with this woman on the night shift. The next time I saw her, she yelled across the hospital ‘howdy, F**KER.’ I assume she thought this was amusing because it sounds similar to my last name. It didn’t just stop there. For months and months, she only referred to me as f*cker.
I was bullied, belittled and verbally abused by my co-workers. I had a co-worker come up to me on numerous occasions and speak to me in an aggressive and bullying way about how she WANTS things done HER way. She said to me “you need to do it like I told you” then she proceeds to walk away and says “God damn how f***ing hard is it for her to do as she is told?”
When I was younger, I went to work in the traditionally male-dominated fire department as a paramedic. I was the only woman in one department, and in another was one of 16 women in a 550 person department. I had men who were kind and helpful; however, I also had men who did their best to make my life difficult. … The worst part of the experience were some of the wives of my co-workers. An example: When I answered the station phone (remember no cell phones back then), one wife called me the station whore.
I worked in a place with an old boys club mentality for years, and I was a director who set policies for my department. Instead of having my back, the CEO, who was my boss, yelled at me in front of another employee saying “why can’t you just be nicer?” because that employee had gone to him complaining that they didn’t like the policy I had put in place. I also had a peer who, when I was pregnant, would go around and pretend to snap rubber gloves at his wrist and tell me he was ready to deliver the baby.
Working in Silicon Valley, I didn’t expect that being gay would raise an issue with anyone. After three years with the company (and being out), I brought my other half to the company holiday party. On the following Monday, peers from another department stood outside my office and cracked some really disgusting gay and AIDS jokes, yukking it up all the while.
At the time I was in a biracial relationship. I had talked about my partner and how great they were and everyone was happy for me, until they saw his picture. That’s when the “jokes” started.
I had a co-worker who was promoted to a supervisory position. She then spent the next six months chasing off anyone who had more knowledge and experience than she did. The way she did that was by accusing employees of things that they didn’t do, putting notes into the personnel files, calling them names, and humiliating as many people as she could. On my last day, she had an employee in her office behind a closed door, and everyone could hear her screaming at the top of her lungs.
I had been working at my company for almost 5 years when my boss was replaced by a woman who was at least 20 years younger than both of us. She would humiliate/berate me in front of staff, text me 24/7 and keep texting if I didn’t respond immediately, pound her fists on the desk, blame me for everything, throw the “F” bomb around casually, and much more. She was a nightmare.
My supervisor above me would harass myself and the team I worked with almost every day. She would call me out, treat me as if I were a child, test our intelligence, etc… We would work our butts off to be at the top and she would treat us as if we were employees who didn’t know what we were doing, acted as if we were lazy (we weren’t), and everything under the micromanager book. It was awful; I gained 40 lbs and my hair started falling out.
I had just been promoted to Deputy Editor after being with the magazine for 10 years. At the same time, my Editor-in-Chief retired and was replaced with a much younger woman who had less experience than me, but had more television and online experience. Once we started working together she began bullying me by taking away some perks that I had acquired over time, syncing my calendar to hers, taking over my meetings, belittling me in the meetings, asking me to do things that were clearly part of her job, and then changing the deadlines so I could never accurately finish on time with all my other duties.
Has anyone spotted the pattern yet?
Nos. 7 and 8 appear to concern homophobia and racism, and No. 6 old fashioned misogyny. Nos. 12, 13, and possibly 11 concern men. The rest are stories of women making other (presumably) women’s lives miserable. Even in No. 5 where she was the butt of firemen’s jokes, the worst abuse came from their wives. We don’t have a gender for those involved in No. 2, but given they were sitting around gossiping we can perhaps take a guess. Note also the difference in the nature of the bullying, how personal women make it.
The answer, of course, is to lecture men on the patriarchy and adopt policies aimed at putting more women in positions of power. That’ll sort it.