Emotional Assault

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about bad boss: He yells at me, insults me and sometimes has threatened to slap me.

I have been working in my office for the past two years and my boss treats me like rubbish. He yells at me, insults me and sometimes has threatened to slap me. He closes very late and does not allow me to leave. I have to wait for him to close even when I am aware he has nothing to do.I feel he is just being wicked and I cannot do anything about it. This is because, in my culture, you cannot talk back to an elderly person, and, moreover, he is a pastor. What to I do, because I am devastated?

Signed, Lonely

Dear Lonely:

You are not rubbish and your pastor boss shouldn’t trash you. Have you not considered looking for another job? You are reinforcing behavior that is psychological and possibly psychical harmful to your self by continuing to work for a boss who yells, insults, threatens to slap you and insist you work late.You are vulnerable because you sign you note as “Lonely” and you say you are not speaking up for your self because it is not acceptable to talk back to an elderly person, especially one who is a clergyman.

Probably you also have little time to look for another job.Although you know your situation far better than can I at this distance, here are several thoughts for you to consider:

· You have ample reason to look elsewhere for work; You boss doesn’t respect you. He trashes you and has threatened violence.

· Work is hard enough without emotional and potential physical abuse.

· You now bite your tongue, but if you voiced you displeasure about your pastor-boss’s ill treatment, he might turn more abusive.

· You need to get a life; one that allows you time to refresh your body and soul. That means time to walk, work out, read, dance, sing, and recreate; even if you aren’t artistic you might quilt, take cooking lessons, volunteer tutoring, etc.

As you might know if you’ve scanned even a few of our thousands of Q&As, we often advise individuals who are mistreated to gather up their courage and confront their abuser. I’m not doing that for you. Why? Because beneath your brief description, I sense doing so would make you more subject to abuse. So weigh these thoughts. Don’t obsess about them. Don’t play them again and again in your head. Don’t gossip about them with anyone who will listen. Rather find someone you can trust and get her/his advice before you determine what would be best for you.

Hopefully before long you will open the door to a new you. Hopefully you will step out into some activity that enriches and refreshes you body and soul. As the ancient poet told us “Yesterday is but a dream and tomorrow is only a vision, but today well lived makes every dream a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well, therefore, to this day.” Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS; my closing thought suggests that we must do what it takes to achieve an enriching working experience. And it also suggests that we don’t have to take abuse. No one should trash you.

William Gorden