I don’t know quite how to write about what I want to write about, but I know I don’t want to go into detail because it is pathetic (you’ll understand the emphasis later) and because it would take all day and who wants to trawl through all the he said, she said?
So I’m just going to bash it out.
I’ve been having some problems with my work colleagues. The way they talk to me, their passive aggressive actions, how they think of me, how they treat me. I have come to realise that they don’t like me, in fact, they actively bitch about me. I’ve known this for a good long while but somewhere at the back of my mind I was hoping I was being paranoid, overly sensitive and self-conscious. There were good days and bad days.
I was just looking through some old pictures/tweets on Twitter and realised that all this shit at work has been going on a long while…since August last year. That’s almost a year, peeps.
I considered applying for a job I’d seen, but I didn’t really want to. I went to see the boss of bosses (as the bosses are the troublesome colleagues, I had to skip a few levels of the hierarchy) to ask if it was worth me staying for the good days i.e. is that upgrade that has been mentioned actually going to come? Is it better the devil I know? I ended up spilling the whole story and getting upset. Great. She reassured me and good days followed. She didn’t take action as I asked her not to, I knew it would make it worse.
Those good days were followed with bad days. Stropping by my colleagues, slamming stuff around because I didn’t turn the light on and I didn’t water the plant (must have missed those responsibilities in my job description), digs about how the office ‘used to be a laugh’. On this particular day, when I left the office, I heard them talking about me and all my fears – and worse, actually – were confirmed.
You know when you go over a bump in the road and your stomach gets left behind? That feeling. I went back to the boss of bosses and while talking with her, realised the only way I could deal with this was to confront them. I did that, I told them that I’d heard them talking about me and how all I do is try to please them and I feel like I can’t do anything right. I was rocking the full on quivering bottom lip and mascara down the face look.
My colleagues then told me about a load of things that I do that they don’t like while being angry and generally heartless. My line manager said she thought that I was being nasty to her and she was hurt. She said she thought I was pathetic. I am a 30 year old woman, after all.
I’m 32 but I wasn’t telling her that.
The things that I do that they don’t like were inaccurate in most cases, though I had done some of them. Things like going out of the office and not telling them where I’m going (you know, the toilet, the photocopier…) They had also done all of them. I felt as if they were clutching at straws for reasons to dislike me. I feel they just dislike me (which is ok, although I wish it wasn’t the case, but doesn’t necessarily mean you have to behave like that) and then all the things I do-the person I am-become/s more evidence in the case against me. What I’m saying is, if one of their group did it, no problem. It’s because it’s me doing it and they don’t like me, that it’s a problem.
In the following weeks I have found myself looking at people in the street, often other people that work for my organisation and thinking, does everyone in their office like them? They probably don’t. They’ve probably annoyed someone with something they’ve done or said quite innocently. How come their world isn’t falling apart like mine?
Maybe it’s because their office isn’t a massive cliquey bitch fest. Maybe it’s because their colleagues are professional and present their annoyance or dislike of the way something has been done in a professional way and then move on and still talk to the instigator as a fellow human being who has to try and sleep at night.
Maybe. But maybe it’s because they don’t care as strongly about what people think about them as I do. Maybe that’s why they’re able to accept someone has said something they don’t care for and move on as it is not necessarily a slight against them. And what if it is? They can laugh it off as they believe in themselves and their opinion. They disagree and that’s ok.
I’ve written this note in my phone “Is there an office that exists where people don’t talk about each other in a derogatory way? I doubt it. The difference between me and the people that I walk past in the street is that I care what people think about me”.
That’s more or less what I wrote anyway isn’t it?
What is happening now is that I am pretending to be the happy go lucky, witty person at work that my colleagues want me to be (that I actually can be, when I’m happy or content) because I need to be able to survive the day to day. But underneath I am bored and fed up. I hate how I look, I am ashamed of how I live my life. I am obsessing over people and things like a teenager. I am comparing myself to those people and their lives and judging myself against them. I think the obsession is making me feel unhappy, and less the colleagues, right now.
I don’t think that I am pathetic for getting upset at the way my colleagues treat me. I do think I am pathetic because of what I’m doing now, winding myself up, obsessing over people that I don’t know and don’t know me, who come from a different world from me.
I think I could get past the obsession if I could be distracted. I feel like I need a holiday to remind me that life is too short and it’s ok to enjoy yourself, but I also feel like I don’t deserve a holiday. I feel like I want some time off work but I’m scared to take any because it gives my brain space to fret even further. Now I’m fretting about whether to delete the previous few paragraphs I have written because what if someone I know reads this?
I ended up going into a lot of detail didn’t I?