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He Tried Again - This Time At Work

Old 03-07-2011, 03:40 PM
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He Tried Again - This Time At Work

XABF stopped by my desk at work today. He used the book of poems I got published for him for our first Christmas as an excuse, saying "Do I have to give this back?"

He insisted on having to talk to me, and like a fool, I agreed - but I was smart enough to keep it in a safe location I could leave easily. He probably thought he was apologizing, but it was more like he was trying to justify everything. He kept using comments like "Not that it's any of your business" or "I know you don't really care" or "This will only take five minutes of your time."

It was about how I wasn't assertive enough, how he always wanted a partner not a slave, and all these other things that I'm sure he believes - but they're not true. He said that he went to the pulmonologist, got a different medication, and can finally breathe now (I am glad about that). He said he didn't drink, my voice mail messages when he got out of rehab hurt but he still didn't drink, the boxes of his things arriving at his house hurt him terribly because he hung all that stuff on the wall while he had emphysema but he still didn't drink, he's been in and out of AA since he got out but he's stayed sober. (I smelled alcohol on his breath, just a faint whisp of it, but enough that I do not believe the "I'm not drinking anymore" stuff.) His daughter also bought him a copy of "Why Does He Do That?" so I am sure I would have gotten a lot of babble about that book, but finally I interrupted, when he started in on the "if you had only listened to me your career would be much more successful..."

I told him my problem wasn't not listening to him enough, it was in listening to him too much and not listening to myself more. I asked him how many second chances he had burned through, and said that I was all used up, and didn't have any more second chances to give. I said that in the beginning of the relationship I did have a say, but that as time went on I stopped trying to get my point across because he would ridicule it, or use it as an excuse to drink, or yell at me for having my own thoughts, and so the issue wasn't that I wasn't assertive enough, it was that I did not feel safe speaking up for myself. I told him that I was not signing up for that again, and goodbye.

I walked back towards my desk then, and I could hear him following me, so I continued through into the shop area, snuck behind a bunch of parts buggies, silently slipped out the side door, then ran to the outside stairs and spent the next half hour upstairs. I found a woman there who has helped me a lot in the past, told her what happened, then called the work psychologist. I walked him through what happened, and he advised me to write a work email (they're tracked), so there would be proof of what happened and that I had warned him. If he shows up again, it's going to HR.

XABF,
I asked that you not contact me at home or at work, but now you have done both.
Your visit to my desk today violated that request.
If it happens again I will have no choice but to contact HR.
Please don't let it come to that.


I shouldn't have talked to him, but aside from that I think I handled things well. I didn't allow myself to get sucked in, and the whole time he was talking I didn't hear the words he was saying, I felt like I was listening to the little gears in his head spinning and trying to figure out how to get what they wanted. It is difficult for them to discipline people at work, so this also provides some evidence so that if he does try again, they can act upon that. (Right now they would not have enough information.)

I know he won't listen to anything I said, but I feel like there were some things I had left unsaid, and I feel better having said something. I did make it clear that the relationship was over, something that I hadn't really made clear originally (because I wasn't clear myself at the time), so I feel better about that.

I am freaked out that he came by my desk, but I have a witness that he was there, and I have an email proving that I warned him at least once (the email) and probably before that as well. The work psychologist knows, and has a copy of the email, plus I told my own psychologist afterwards. I also asked a different co-worker to walk me back to my car, just to be safe, and we drove to my car in his car, so G won't know which car is mine, still.

Now I just have to figure out how to relax again.
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Old 03-07-2011, 03:48 PM
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SOunds like you responded very well, covered all your bases, and have laid the groundwaork that neede to be done..keep taking good care of yourself.
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Old 03-07-2011, 04:29 PM
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What is going on? Is there something in the air or water?? This is the third thread I've read today where the A has escalated and become more aggressive. Please! Take care of yourselves and do not minimize their actions. Use extreme caution regarding any communication and do NOT communicate if you can at all help it. Please.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:02 PM
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Well handled, StarCat.

He sounds like a nutjob. I hope you have an office on the other side of the country where the company can transfer him.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:09 PM
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gosh it is just MEN and there EGOs and needing to explain the shift of the blame to others and not to themselves...so typical!

good girl, you did not fall into that trap...and I so love how you covered your a!s
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:20 PM
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It is a big company, with offices around the world, so there are plenty of places to go.
The issue is I am not sure they can make anyone move, you have to volunteer.

They can give him an option to move or be laid off I suppose, but he will pick the "be laid off" option because he won't want to move, and they do give nice severance packages.

I love my apartment, and I love my job, and I do not want to change either. Right now I am not so worried about a physical safety issue; if it does become an issue of course I can adjust accordingly, but I do hope it does not come to that.

I am grateful XABF has so much debt, or he would have pushed me to quit my job, and I love what I do and where I work. It also has really nice benefits, and I got in just before they stopped offering pensions, so I have a giant advantage over the average person my age.

I do try to stay out in the open, and I did not walk to my car alone - not that I was worried at that point about XABF trying to harass me in the parking lot (I did make sure his car left) but because it did make me feel better, plus another witness should it come to that.
He does not have as many friends in my area as I do, as well, plus the few people he does consider friends over here know me better, and I have been careful about where I go and when.

Plus my workplace has its own security personnel (Pinkertons), with their own emergency number, so I am not worried if he tries this again at work. I have lots of friends, and lots more resources than on the outside. The police are limited in a lot of ways, whereas my workplace will go ballistic because they're afraid of lawsuits, especially now that I've got a witness and an email, so if he tries again, I hope he does it at work.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:29 PM
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So sorry that you have to go through all of this.

You know it's International Women's Day tomorrow? Millions of women across the world will be thinking about the struggles that we go through each and every day. Standing up to your ex in the way you are is feeding into that vibe and I hope you can feel it returned.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:53 PM
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If he violates what the company tells him to do, they will have to do something, or risk serious liability.

Actually, you could talk to the EEOC officer and ask that they treat it as sexual harassment. THAT will get their attention, lol.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:59 PM
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Wow.
And I thought *MY* Monday sucked.

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Old 03-07-2011, 06:23 PM
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Hugs, StarCat, I agree that you handled it very well.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:03 PM
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Well done.

Try this on for size.

You gave this man 100 second chances. And like my wife, he simply ignored them. He's had no real consequence until you finally couldn't offer any more chances. He still hasn't seen it. He may still be living the delusion, as so many of them do. The words he spoke to you indicate he thinks YOU are the problem, and YOU always were. He can do no wrong. Why in the world is he NOT going to come by and harass you more? He ENJOYS it. And has not suffered a single consequence of anything he's done.

I ask; What do you have to lose by going to HR now? I say nothing. He already violated your request. He's just going to do it again. It matters not that your previous request was not through a company email. The request was made, and he's probably dumb enough to admit it. He'll blame you for not being clear enough. But it will be perfectly to clear to the person interviewing him.

Put this in the context of an unwanted "interest". The "offender" is told by the "victim" to not do the behavior again. Fill in the quotes with what ever you want, and make the context of the behavior as bad as you can imagine or something as simple as a supportive hand on the shoulder. If this was done verbally and happened ONE additional time, HR would be on this guy like Monica Lewinsky on Bill Clinton. Hey, it was better than "white on rice", right?

Really. Think about this. Past performance is the best indicator of future behavior. We know this. he will be back. Might as well go to HR now, and have him face the inevitable sooner rather than later. What advantage do YOU gain by waiting until he does it again? What price do YOU pay by going to HR now?

I suspect a very stern letter that he is forced to sign in front of his supervisor would be presented to him by lunch time if you were to make HR your first stop in the morning.

He's had his second chance a 100 times. He's had 1000 last chances. Burn him.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:39 PM
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Hi star!

So sorry you had to see him and how wonderful you could stand up to him and state what you thought! The important part of all this. It was bound to happen since you are at the same work place like me and my husband.

My AH made many attempts to confront or corner me at work too. This last time I finally told him I would report him to HR. I did inform my supervisor who was supportive and agreeable. Hope you can do the same.

I am sending prayers and positive thoughts your way tomorrow. Have a good day and just focus on your work.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
If he violates what the company tells him to do, they will have to do something, or risk serious liability.

Actually, you could talk to the EEOC officer and ask that they treat it as sexual harassment. THAT will get their attention, lol.
He already knows this can happen, and will happen if he tries it again.
The work psychologist is having a nice long talk with him, as well.

If he tries again, I will go to HR. He would then be called in for a "conversation" and a final warning, with the notice that if it happened again his employment would be terminated.

I would have gone to HR regarding his "visit" yesterday, except that I am not ready to do it, yet. If I did it about yesterday, I would feel bad. If he stops by again, I will not feel bad, and will not hesitate to call security first, then HR, then get a restraining order, all in the same day.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:28 AM
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Actually, you could talk to the EEOC officer and ask that they treat it as sexual harassment. THAT will get their attention, lol.
LexieCat is right about this one StarCat.
While I was on active duty, there was a big stink about female soldiers being sexually assaulted. EEOC was brought in, trained the higher up NCO's and stuck around to make sure it worked.
Believe me, when I finally filed a complaint against a man who was aggressive with me, (he outranked me and was constantly making suggestions). The Hammer of God came down. That **** started rolling at the Commanding Officers desk until it landed on the Captains desk I worked for.
After his name came up for his infractions (UCMJ) and of course the rumor mill, several young female soldiers came to me (I was ten years older than them) and said he had done the same thing to them. Acting and saying sexually aggressive things.
I told them you dont have to talk to the chain of command (that was way way different than things are usually handled) just go straight to the EEOC officer.

Within two weeks the guy who was behaving badly had lost rank and moved to another section.
Thank my HP I was sober. I would have never had the guts to step up if I were still drinking.

So, I love the EEOC. It worked well for me.

Beth

PS,

starcat, everytime I read some recent antics of your ex, I get to itchin for my paint gun.
with hot pink paint. when he shows up where he is not supposed to be, he will be marked.
oh yes.
:rotfxko
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:45 AM
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StarCat - sending you positive energy today, with prayers.

Your story is scary, and makes me concerned for the next round of my situation.

Your strength and resolve is inspiring, which makes the concern I feel a lot less scary.

Thank you for sharing - and passing forward a little bit of that "chutzpah" that makes you successful in handling this. I admire you very much.
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:36 PM
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Starcat,

I bought a "Grip master" to handle stress at work, about ex or otherwise.

http://www.amazon.com/Gripmaster-Exe.../dp/B0006GC5D8

I have had to go to therapy to learn where and how to place my boundaries at work. I agree when you are ready, you are ready. I put up with much BS with ex and I wish I had acted sooner. In the end he will keep doing what he does: be disrespectful, ignore anyone around him, imagine he is the Small God that Rules the Known Universe. Expecting otherwise is pure fantasy.

I hope you continue taking care of yourself. Sometimes I wish I had moved to another job, sometimes I am grateful I got one I enjoy regardless of those kind of coworkers. Now I think I'll get the best of both worlds working from home. Perhaps you could you work remotely?

Regardless of what others think,say, or do, we are free I am glad you know the right people to contact whenever you chose to do so.
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Old 03-08-2011, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tuffgirl View Post
StarCat - sending you positive energy today, with prayers.

Your story is scary, and makes me concerned for the next round of my situation.

Your strength and resolve is inspiring, which makes the concern I feel a lot less scary.

Thank you for sharing - and passing forward a little bit of that "chutzpah" that makes you successful in handling this. I admire you very much.

Thank you so much for writing this, Tuffgirl, I feel like crying right now.
I never really thought of myself being strong, or inspiring, or any of that.
Thank you for this.
:ghug3


TC999,
I have a not-so-fancy version of that, ironically from XABF, when I couldn't use the wire twisters at work. I should bring it in.

My company is very large (5k+ people at this site alone), and I'm in a different building, across the street, behind the railroad tracks, stuck in a back corner, and he never has any reason to even be on this side of the street 99.999% of the time.
I have a very easy time avoiding him and not running into him, and he would have a very easy time not running into me, if he actually bothered to put that into practice.
They do have ways to work remotely, but my manager is afraid to use them, and the computer systems I would need to use take forever to load anyway. I do feel safer at work anyway, surrounded by people, than I would if I were to stay at my apartment. There are lots of people here, most of them know me (and like me, for some crazy reason!), and few know him, so I also don't have to worry about people taking sides. He'd be out of his element over here.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:23 PM
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Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I detect that you are feeling guilt becuase of the fact you listened to him.

Just because you shared the same space does not give him the right to harass you. PERIOD. Whether you stood there or not.

I agree with the person who said that you'd already given this nutball enough chances to do the right thing...but that's the point isn't it? I mean you've drawn your boundary, informed him of it and he's decided that the rules don't apply to him.

I think HR needs to be informed immediately. If your going to set boundaries it's up to you to enforce them. If you don't he's going to keep this up, possibily even escalating!

Go to HR. You have to stand up and show him his behavior is NOT acceptable.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by StarCat View Post
I never really thought of myself being strong, or inspiring, or any of that.
Really? Well you are. I've learned a lot from reading your posts.

You have a good head on your shoulders. You are going to get through this mess and come out of this okay. Go back and read some of the advice you've given to others. You are gaining wisdom. You can count on yourself to figure out what to do.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:52 PM
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Smart people on this thread. Thank you all.

StarCat - I'm rooting for you. I know you've got this covered and know what's best for you. Your recovery is rocking.
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