bits & bobs: breakfast television, birthdays, and bullies

November 10, 2011 § 10 Comments

I know I’ve been very quiet lately for a number of reasons, both amazing and not-so-amazing.

I haven’t had the chance to share with you the wonderful experience I had being on Breakfast Television here in Toronto with Canadian Living, and the hours that followed at the Canadian Living Magazine headquarters, two weeks ago.  Amazing!!

I also celebrated my birthday on Halloween and O.T. came up for a surprise visit for five days.  Perhaps I should write a post one day about how we survive our east coast-west coast relationship.  Oh, correction — survived!  O.T. was just last week scooped up by IBM to design their computer chips in their offices outside of New York.  Well, okay, a far suburb, but nonetheless a reasonable hour and a half driving distance to Manhattan (and a seven and a half hour driving distance from T.O. — still miles better than a seven and half hour flight including transfer).  He is moving east next month!  Exciting!!

But it hasn’t been a perfect picture for me.  I have had some struggles over several months which I haven’t been able to openly share with you due to its personal nature.  However after a lot of contemplation, I believe it is a significant subject that deserves recognition and discussion.  I have experienced bullying by an individual at the workplace.  It took time to recognize and identify what was happening.  It took a good friend to point out flatly “You’re being bullied at your work”, to which I replied “Who?  Me?  Bullied?  No.  Really?  Oh.  Really.”  It took strength and courage to acknowledge, report, and overcome.  Everyday is another day to grow positively and move forward.  Let me say this: bullying among children is no different than bullying among adults.  Adults may be presumed to have stronger emotional ability to cope as victims (or that adults have solid emotional maturity not to be bullies in the first place).  However, take away the playground and replace it with cubicles, take your bully and age him by several decades, take the accomplices, the bystanders, and the targets and put a few years on them too, and it’s still the same scenario.  I would like to offer my experiences to shed another speck of light on the topic of workplace bullying to help those who are targets and encourage bystanders to have a voice. Workplace bullying should not be taken lightly and should receive more public recognition.

So I will share my thoughts on Breakfast Television, birthdays, and bullies in my upcoming posts…

§ 10 Responses to bits & bobs: breakfast television, birthdays, and bullies

  • Gayla says:

    Honey, I know so well of what you are talking about. However in my case it was one man, quite young, who was bullying 3 women. I finally went over my bosses head and told her boss what was actually said and the guy never set foot in the place again. It was an awful experience that I had to move on to get over. I just don’t think my stress level would have ever evened out and it was destroying my health. So even though he lost his job, we did too. I guess I didn’t say that the other lady took retirement over it. I’m glad you have done something about it. You are such a special soul. For some reason creative people are not the kind who fight back. I’m glad you found it in yourself to make a stand.

    • Jeromina says:

      Thanks for your support, Gayla. And for sharing your story! I am so sad to hear that you lost your job. But I have read online that most people who are targeted by bullies often end up being terminated. It’s absolutely horrible that this happens. That’s why more people should be open about their experiences, so that there would be better ways that management could deal with these type of people. I am about to post my story in the next few minutes. I hope you read it. 🙂 I’m sure you’ve found a much better place to work. I’m sure being let go was a blessing in disguise! I wish you all the best!

  • I am so sorry you are going through this, having a supportive, conflict free work place is so important to one’s emotional health. It is difficult to be creative, if things aren’t quite right. I hope you can work through this and confront where necessary. Thinking about you, love your blog.

    • Jeromina says:

      Thanks for your message and kind words, KJ! It definitely has been a hard time to creative, but I feel like I’m moving on. It took me a while to figure out how to tell my story diplomatically, but I’m about to post it. I welcome you to read and put in your thoughts. Thanks for reading my blog!

  • Mary says:

    I have also had this same experience. The boss that I worked for bullied many people and 2 that I know of left, broken women. Then the focus was on me. I did my best to ignore it, but it is impossible when its the boss. I even thought about making an harassment case, but decided that it was probably futile due to the fact that this person spun things around to be my fault. I ended up having a terrible accusation made against me that was untrue, having police and another agency involved. There ended being no criminal charges, and because I was able to hold my head high throughout the whole ordeal, my boss realised how hard it was going to be to break me and basically gave up and landed his sights on another poor soul.
    Fortunately I no longer work with that person, but I feel for anyone who is being treated that way.

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi Mary,
      Thanks for your support and for sharing your experience! It’s sad that most people who are bullied are in fact bullied so that they are forced to quit. And I’m not surprised that the target always ends up moving on somebody else. I’m also not surprised that you were blamed for things to be your fault. That is apparently the work of a serial bully. I’ve finished writing my post, after sometime of thinking about it, and I’m about to post it online. I hope you read it, there are lots of useful links that I will share in the end of the post. I’m glad you no longer work with this person. I’m glad you were able to withstand all of the harsh circumstances you were put through! More power to you! 😀

  • Anonymous says:

    Groan! I was bullied by a boss- I was super young, and didn’t really understand why I was being terrorized by her! After a while, I began to question myself- was I really doing a terrible job? Was I really as dumb as this woman said I was?

    When a respected boss is also a bully, it’s easy to doubt yourself. Eventually she ended up leaving… thank god! I’m not sure that I would have been able to take a stand. I learned a lot from the experience- what kind of manager, and person I want to be- to really think about how my actions affect others.

    Good luck! Work is just a huge part of our lives, and when it’s bad, it affects everything else around us- good for you for having the strength and courage to do something about it!

    • Jeromina says:

      Hi! Thanks for stopping by and sharing your story. That is the work of a bully — to make you question your competence and to make you feel like you are worth much less that you are. I’m happy that this person ended up leaving. And it’s great that you were able to use this opportunity to look within yourself to know what kind of person you will and will not be. I am about to put up my post. Hope you read it. 🙂

  • mari says:

    Thanks for sharing, Jeromina. This post was amazingly well written – am looking forward to your future posts, and I hope your bully situation was rectified. Sounds absolutely awful!

    • Jeromina says:

      Thanks for your kind words, Mari! I’m getting through it day by day. I’ve finally found a way to write about it without being too emotional. Gonna post now…

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