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Roxy

Is This Bullying At Work?

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Roxy

I work in a charity shop, a few days of the week there is a certain staff member there who fancies themselves a bit of the "class clown" with their "banter".. I don't find that sort of humour funny, I go to work to work but now the person is accusing me of being "too sensitive" for not laughing at there jokes, and they are starting to make jokes about my hair, the way I dress and it all comes across a bit personal and bullying.. everytime I walk past there's a joke and I don't see the same personal put-downs of other staff.. like one time the staff member suggested I spray some deodorant which I thought was rude ! as I never smell and always bath.

I just don't know what to do, should I talk to the manager or am I being over-sensitive? I'm only volunteering so I don't HAVE to put up with this as I suffer from bad depression and anxiety anyway and it isn't helping

It's like this person enjoys putting me down to make themselves feel good or does it infront of people to "show off" and I find it really annoying and unbearable ! =(

 

what possible solutions?

 

go in on the days the person is not in?

 

get the manager to Tell the person not to speak to me and I won't them? that would suit me fine..

 

how to approach this? any suggestions..

 

 

Edited by Roxy

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Roxy

By the way I haven't told them I've got Aspergers, but I don't see it helping even if they knew.. if anything it would make there "too sensitive" as a stick to beat me with and blame Aspergers :(

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Sanctuary

This other person is behaving in a completely unacceptable way. He / she may claim they are joking but that is often used as a cover to bully someone. The fact that the comments are directed at you rather than others suggests it is personal but even if the comments were made to others that wouldn't make them right. Have you spoken to him / her? Sometimes telling the person directly but politely that you don't want to hear those comments again can be enough. You can warn them you will report them to the manager if the comments continue. This person does need to know their behaviour is being addressed - if they are not spoken to or subject to action  they will just continue. Trying to avoid them will probably not work as they'll pick up on what you're doing and try to turn it against you. It's better to make it clear that such behaviour is not acceptable.

I would agree there is no need to mention your AS. Even if you didn't have it such comments would be unacceptable. It's also true that the sort of person who makes fun of others is only likely to do so even more if they become aware of you having AS.

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Eliza

I've noticed NTs like to tease and it's hard to tell when they're kidding around or just being mean. Normally, I'd tease back, but the fact he's zoning in on you specifically is either some weird type of flirtation or he's a bully. I think you should speak to your manager about how uncomfortable it's making you feel and ask for advice on how to handle it. 

Volunteer work should be a source of joy, not a wrestling match, so remember you can always decide to work somewhere else if this jerk persists.

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Gone home
26 minutes ago, Eliza said:

ou can always decide to work somewhere else if this jerk persists

He's certainly a jerk. I once worked with someone like that.
They didn't like the fact I was an internally controlled character and they just kept pushing and pushing trying to get a response. Eventually he got a mouthful back which established some boundaries.

Characters that won't set boundaries sometimes need them illustrating so they know how far to go. I doubt he will majorly change in a hurry.
Yes he's a tiresome bully ... he probably senses there may be some masking (which we have to do to work) and wants to see whats beneath ... not that he has any right of course as he sounds a monumental shit head.

It may even be his weird way of getting attention because he fancies you ...(shudder)

What can you do? .... dunno as it depends on your character - give him a mouthful, discuss with manager, discuss with volunteer coordinator, choose to work when he's not there, work somewhere else, reduce hours and work somewhere else in tandem .... I expect there will be a formal complaints/grievance procedure too ...

Myself I have had issues staying with the same employer even when its destructive as I get anxiety about changing jobs ... my strategy now (in between jobs after being monumentally bullied and harassed out) is to try an be more flexible / adaptable and  strong enough to firmly move on when things get sticky ...

 

Edited by Gone home
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Nesf

He or she is pushing your boundaries and going too far s/he needs to be shown where the limit is, and put in their place. I would think up a strong but controlled word to have with them, or retort, and use it the next time there is an incident.

Edited by Nesf
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Ben

Sounds like a complete and utter ass clown to me. I'm already laughing at them from here, because I can already see the little boy hiding away in that mans body. (I'm assuming this is a male?)

A secure person doesn't behave like this, so already, these bullying tactics knock him down the totem pole. Look at men like Churchill or Martin Luther King. Both phenomenal leaders who encouraged the best out of people. It's what the strong-minded do. 

You are 100% responsible for how you think and feel, so set the example that you want to see. Don't be like them, be strong. 

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Roxy

I told the manager, she said she will speak to the person today but now I've had panic attacks and don't want to go in today as they are there today.. think it would be too uncomfortable and awkward atmosphere. 

She reckons the person doesn't mean to be mean but to me it came across as personal put-downs masked as jokes which is what bullies use to do to me at school.

I regret telling her now as it will probably lead to me quitting.. just reminds me so much at why I dropped out of school  

Edited by Roxy
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Nesf
4 hours ago, Roxy said:

I told the manager, she said she will speak to the person today but now I've had panic attacks and don't want to go in today as they are there today.. think it would be too uncomfortable and awkward atmosphere. 

She reckons the person doesn't mean to be mean but to me it came across as personal put-downs masked as jokes which is what bullies use to do to me at school.

I regret telling her now as it will probably lead to me quitting.. just reminds me so much at why I dropped out of school  

You did the right thing, because the situation would probably wouldn't have improved. Hopefully she'll tell the person in a subtle way so as not to create problems and a bad atmosphere - NTs are good at that kind of thing. I would go in and see how it goes before making a decision to quit. It could be that the person genuinely didn't know that they were bothering you, and will regret it change their behaviour for the better.

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Gone home

Environmental factors are important with autism ... he's an environmental factor.
I think its important not 'to have all our eggs in one basket' . 
The worst things I have been through are when I'm afraid to leave / let go of bad jobs ... though there's ups and downs, bad situations generally get harder to manage.
Over commitment can lead to us being victim.
I'd give it a go again, but don't feel guilty about leaving if you need to.
I'm trying to teach myself not to invest too much of myself in employment ... coworkers can be difficult to understand
 

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Laurie

Thanks for posting this. I work at a medical office with sarcastic and rude coworkers too. I've learned just to let it roll off. People say things and it's a reflection towards themselves. When they say something about your appearance, it says something more about them than you to be honest. I used to cry at work but if you smile and laugh along with them. Then, they have nothing to say. You shouldn't let them take advantage of you though. :) You're better than that. It's also not a bad thing that you're overly sensitive. 

Just do the best job you can and be nice to everyone. You don't have to like all your coworkers just be cordial. Focus on life outside of work too. :)

If you have any questions, just message me. I'm dealing with similar issues. good luck!!

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Sanctuary

Not responding to mocking or abusive comments can be seen as a sign of strength which deters bullies but it can also be seen as a sign of weakness which encourages more of the same. Ignoring comments is best done from a position of strength and confidence or where the person making the comments lacks credibility and influence. If you have already been upset by such comments it's very difficult to adopt a more confident attitude towards them. Bullies are very skilled in reading the responses of victims. Even if a victim tries to appear strong and confident they will often spot non-verbal signs of frustration and upset which encourage them to carry on.

Whatever the response it's important not to let matters persist. Bullying becomes much more difficult to overcome if it is not tackled promptly and too often victims have suffered in silence for long periods, even years. Reporting the comments to the manager at an early point is a very good step and it is important the manager takes decisive action. Hopefully she will have the desired impact.

Edited by Sanctuary
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