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Boss vent

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Ugh. I just have to get this off my chest so I apologize if this is rambling.

I have an off & on relationship with my boss. I get the feeling often that she doesn't trust the thoroughness of my work & that leads us to conflict. I am not going to insist that I am the best employee she ever had but I work diligently & with a smile on my face. I take normal criticism well.

But there are times when she is unnecessarily nasty to me. For instance today she came into my office ready to argue about my work product. I pulled out my notebook, was attentive & answered her questions. She said some unduly negative things about my work, knowing I had worked very hard to finish the assignment ahead of HER vacation. Fine. But then she tells me she is angry, ANGRY! because I had discussed the assignment with my coworker (someone who is my senior & has much more experience than I do) in what she percieved to be a one-sided way (tho she only heard snippets of our conversation or knew it second hand). To be clear there is nothing confidential that I cannot say to my coworker.

I was stunned & found myself in tears moments after she left. Every time she upsets me I am ashamed that someone can so quickly make me feel like a failure. It took me hours to calm down... Heck I'm still not calm.

What upsets me the most is the thought that I will never earn this woman's trust. I will never be good enough. Also, the thought that I am trading in time with my family to spend time in this toxic environment. It kills me that I have to spend more time with her than my son.

Ok I'll stop now. Ugh! Thank goodness I don't have to see her for a bit!
post #2 of 8
Sounds like she needs a vacation. Contact your hr about it. Not in a threatening way just ask them.if they have advice on how to deal with you boss as your personalities are not meshing well. She can't take her frustrations out on you and as a manager herself she is going to have to learn. Better you contact Jr and help her.now before she fired for it.

Unless you know she is manipulative.and controlling by nature maybe just tough it out and hope she wins the lottery while on her vacation and.you don't have to deal.with her.any more.
post #3 of 8
I suggest you document each incident as soon as possible with what she said and her tone before going to hr. That way you have some concrete evidence and are taken more seriously.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much, ladies!

Unfortunately, she is not in a position where going to HR will make a difference. Which sucks. She's been in her position so long, I know she will never change.

I am currently looking for a new position, but I know I will be stuck with her for a while yet (at least six months, im assuming) so I need to figure out how to cope. I've tried everything but I don't think it's an appropriate expectation for me to not speak with my coworker.

Some days I wish she would just fire me if she is so unhappy with my work & distrustful. (Ok not really as I know that would make finding another job that much harder...) The problem is that this sort of thing comes to a head only every 4-6 months. I've tried REALLY hard to be the most pleasant person possible with her. But I can't fathom not discussing issues with my coworker!? It just makes me really upset to think that she was actually angry with me when I am not the type of person to make anyone angry (exception being my DH & DS on occasion). And then when I tried to discuss that with her she just shut me down - maybe after hearing me calmly explain myself made her realize she was wrong but didn't want to let on. I can hope at least.
post #5 of 8

Boy, do I feel ya! I'm in a similar situation. I understand that I'm held to a somewhat higher standard, being second in command. But I am starting to feel like my boss is dogging me at every turn. It might just be my imagination, but we recently rehired the person who was in my position prior to leaving - she was brought in originally as a seasonal hire. Well... she was kept on, and has already replaced one of our key-holders. I have an uncomfortable feeling that she is being moved up the chain, and that my job is at risk. Kinda sucks. I, too, am starting to look at other options.

post #6 of 8
Phew, sounds like a doozy of a boss there! I think I would do everything you can to get a new position quickly so you can always have the thought in the back of your mind that this is only temporary. It is much easier to put up with crap like that if you know it is temporary!

For dealing with your boss in the meantime, I would keep in mind that it's not you, it's her. Just do what you need to do and when she gets unreasonably angry/upset/whatever just keep thinking it's not me, it's her. Maybe just calmly ask how she wants you to handle it in the future. Would she rather you come talk to her with questions first (not that I blame you for avoiding her!). I personally find "kill 'em with kindness" to be the best way to handle overly negative people as it gives them nothing to latch onto and allows you to stay professionally cool. I also start asking more and more questions to gets things very clear to the point of annoyance for them, but hey I'm not getting yelled at again if they can't be clear in their direction, KWIM? Good luck, I had a boss like this for a summer job who was basically just an ass for no good reason and I basically ignored his bad behavior and asked whatever questions I needed to ask to get my work done regardless of how mean he was being. I kind of made it a challenge to myself to stay 100% professional and laughed on the inside at how ridiculous his responses were.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the support, ladies!

Mtiger, sorry to hear you are going through something similar. It sounds like a tough situation & I wouldn't wish the likes of even what I'm experiencing on anyone!

Quinalla, I love the "it's her, not me" mantra. And I think you're right about asking lots of questions. As you might guess, she is not a super-effective manager so I definitely think I need to buck up & as more questions!
post #8 of 8
The best piece of advice I've ever heard is that you cannot change other people, you can only change your reaction to them. It's not easy, but it works. My DH has had many a ridiculous boss and their actions consistently affect our family...(last minnute schedule changes, not being paid overtime, cancelled vacations because of a 'big case') it's been 12 years now, and the only way I've learned to cope is to remember that we can only change our response, not their actions. I hope you find a better fit soon!
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