Editor’s note: The following article was posted in our Forum by the Lovefraud reader “Bluemosaic.” It is such a helpful and insightful article that I want everyone to see it, so I am elevating it to a blog post as well.
I have experienced longterm bullying and toxic behavior from a co-worker. I have recently given my two weeks notice to my employer and the peaceful road ahead is in sight. I am going to give a little background, for readers to better understand the vantage point from which I speak.
I will begin with a couple quotes:
“Always speak your truth, even when your voice shakes.”
“In a time of deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
George Orwell, 1984
My background. I found Lovefraud after an emotionally abusive relationship ended very poorly. I was abused by a serial predator that I believe was either a sociopath/pyschopath/ or NPD. I have been in recovery and healing mode for five years now, and I no longer have any emotional charge from the man and experience that landed me here at Lovefruad.
What has led me to come back to this place is having had a co-worker with similar persoanlity traits as the man who used/abused and discarded me. My co-worker came into my life at nearly the same time as the predator exited it.
The universe takes no prisoners. Lessons are to be learned or repeated with ferocity, until learned.
The first assault on my person from my co-worker was the “pity ploy” & boundary violations. (For clarity, I will refer to said co-worker from here forward as “she-P”. I believe she is a classic pyschopath.) She-P was hired to cover one day of my schedule to assist me in avoiding a seven day work week. At two weeks in, she-P claimed a major health crisis and was not able to cover work she was hired for. I returned to my seven day work week for over two months time. (this was the first of many health crisis’ she had during the years to follow.)
I fell into the trap of feeling sorry for she-P. The faked illness was the “pity ploy”. I put my own needs on the back burner. I needed one day a week off, and had every right to decilne coverage for the day she was hired to take. Had I stayed empowered and declined covering the work she was hired for, my employer may have let her go immediately, and the following years of insane behavior may not have happened.
The lesson. Boundaries and always putting my needs before the needs of other’s.
She-P eventually recovers from her mystery illness, and begins to work. For awhile, things glide along smoothly, except for the occassional odd request to shadow me on the job, weird personal questions about my life outside of work, my family ect. I shrug it off.
Trust is always to be earned, never given freely. Until I have known someone a length of time(6-12 months), my persoanl business is not to be shared.
Odd behavior and inappropiate requests are not to be ignored, ever.
The first big assault came at about one year into she-P working with me. I was falsely accused (by she-P) of behavior that could have led to my being fired and completely went against the grain of who I am as a person, and my principles. I was basically accused of attempting to push and bully her out of addtional work she had aquired during that first year. It was 100% false and shocked me. It had been done in such a twisted, manipulaltive way, that I got my first instinctual red-flag. Somewhere inside of me, my gut was telling me I was dealing with another psychopath.
“Never listen to your gut, unless it tells you to run” (our guts aren’t good at recognizing friend, but are good at recognizing foe)…..and I will add, if your gut tells you to run, run right away, run hard, run fast, run with your head held high, your peace and dignity intack. If your chased, stand tall, stand still, and stare the “IT” that is chasing you down and speak your truth; directly, calmly and with zero emotion (if possible)
and the truth?…..”This is not working for me. Adios!”
I do not recommend attempting to hold onto a job, where you are being bullied and regularly verbally assaulted by a pyscho, nor do I recommend attempting to expose them to the employer. I did both and it cost me dearly. The more she-P realized how I saw her true nature, saw into her soul, the more heinous and hateful she-P became; and the management at my job either did not beleive me, or they were protecting her due to she-P’s connections high above in the orgnization.
Staying and fighting for what I thought was right-for justice, was a fruitless lesson in being ensnared into a cesspool.
What do I value? What are the principles by which I choose to live my life? Have a firm grasp of both, and no vacillation on what matters to me at the core of my being.
One cannot remain in a battle with a psychopath and have a peaceful existence. I had several friends, within the first couple years, tell me to quit this job. Three freinds shared former co-worker bullying experiences with me. All three left those jobs. One of the three had HR involvement, where some attempts were made to purge the bully, but in the end, my freind left anyway, due to covert retaliation.
As I write this post, I am experiencing retaliation from she-P, on my way out the door. She-P knows I am leaving, and still threw landmines in my path. The tactics she is using at this point, are irrelevant, but it displays one deep truth when dealing with a pyschopath….once there ego has been wounded, once you “see” them, they will stop at nothing to assault the one(ME) who dared call them out for who, how and what they are.
…..oh yes, LESSON #4 is this:
When dealing with another human being who does not share your principles, has little to no conscience, low empathy and no morals, do not have long term connection with them. Whether they be a potential mate, friend, or co-worker, always walk away, and do not delude thyself into thinking you can fight the good fight and win, becase you will lose everytime. And for reasons that speak well of you!
I have morals, I have a conscience, I have principles, and I am an Empath at the core of my nature and being. I cannot fight dark-toxic-psycopathic people, and win. And win what anyway?? I value myself and my inner peace, more than any job. I cannot remain at peace inside while agreeing to spend my time and energy in battle with a psychopath.
A summation of what I have learned….I am becoming an empowered woman, a woman who values what I am, and what I bring to the table, in work and relationships. If I’m being served less than I deserve, I have the right to leave. I quit my job last week, and I feel empowered.
Empowered in a way I have never felt before.
I hope my post helps someone else leave a toxic job sooner, and here is a funny to reframe the whole event….
“Not my monkey, not my circus!!”