Triggers at work

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truus

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Triggers at work
« on: April 10, 2019, 02:05:13 PM »
I just want to preface this post with - I hope it doesn't make anyone think I'm ungrateful for having a job. I was talking to a friend recently who has bipolar disorder, and how we both hold full-time jobs and feel like we're odd because we're able to do this. Like "high functioning" or whatever, which is not really a good term. Neither of us feel comfortable talking in our local support groups about the challenges we face at work because our jobs are different from those around us. In the sexual assault support groups I've gone to, usually the majority of attendees were recently raped and are going through crisis. As a result, they often are struggling to hold a job or have taken measures to postpone work like FMLA or leaving work and finding temporary housing, and that kind of thing. For my friend and I, it feels selfish to talk about our work problems in front of people who maybe can't or don't have a job at the moment.

Now that that's said...

I've been having a really hard time with triggers at work lately. Because of the things I've learned about boundaries since going to therapy and support group, I know that my boss has horrible boundaries and is narcissistic and abusive. My workplace is toxic and I hate it, but I need my job. I'm the sole breadwinner, so it's not an option to quit unless I have another offer elsewhere.

My boss really messes with my mind, they are one of those bosses who will systematically destroy you if you get on their wrong side. I once had a conversation with them in which they gossiped about 14 separate individuals in the span of 2 hours. I've always had extremely strong ethics and one of my core values is honesty and truth. Someone like this who is two-faced and who I can't trust just really puts my entire core self on edge. Being on edge 24/7 for the last 2 years has seriously harmed my mental health and the progress I was making in my healing journey before I took this job.

I feel like maybe I could cope with the triggers of professional life if I wasn't constantly scraping the bottom of my mental health barrel because of this boss. For example, I work in development and they frequently use the word "grooming" to describe the process they follow in a recurring meeting. I hate this. I seriously have tried so many times to explain to them that the word is not right, it doesn't mean what they want it to mean, and even the organization they got the word from admitted the mistake and chose a different word ("refinement"). But despite that, everyone just loves to use this word. Every time I hear it I'm reminded of what I experienced and my FOO and abuser. These constant reminders of abuse make it so hard to focus on work.

To make matters worse, I work with mostly men, and mostly disrespectful, aggressive and sexist men. I have had to grow a really thick skin while working here because I'm a manager, so I have to protect my team, stand up for myself and them, and also manage men who poor performers in my own team.

Sometimes I think maybe I'm just not cut out for the job I'm doing. I want to change careers but I have no idea what I want to do or what I'm qualified to do besides what I'm already doing. I feel trapped and hopeless and helpless.

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Three Roses

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Re: Triggers at work
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2019, 03:15:06 PM »
 I'm so sorry you're faced with these difficulties on a daily basis, truus! It must feel horrible.

You do not sound ungrateful for having a job, you sound like someone whose boss is dysfunctional and making your job a difficult place to be and still pursue your healing.

I hope you find a listening audience here that can be a sounding board for you like you want your group to be. While I understand you're hesitant to share in group out of sensitivity to others, you do also need an opportunity to talk about your own issues, and you are deserving as much as anyone else of being given the platform to do so.

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Blueberry

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Re: Triggers at work
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2019, 03:52:17 PM »
I hope you find a listening audience here that can be a sounding board for you like you want your group to be. While I understand you're hesitant to share in group out of sensitivity to others, you do also need an opportunity to talk about your own issues, and you are deserving as much as anyone else of being given the platform to do so.

 :yeahthat:

If you have cptsd, you are welcome here on the board with all your problems whether or not other people on the board  have these problems! I say for myself that we on this board share a lot of symptoms and experiences but not everybody has all symptoms or goes through all experiences, fortunately.

I'm really sorry about what you go through at work! Your boss sounds like Narc Woman I had to deal with when doing some volunteer work. Fortunately I was able to use the lever of "either the supervisor keeps NW away from me, or I'm leaving" - something you can't do without endangering your job, I presume anyway.

I'm guessing you're cut out for your job, you're just not cut out for doing it with a boss who is as narcisstic as yours.

Sending you some strength and compassion from the forum to help deal with that narc daily.

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truus

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Re: Triggers at work
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2019, 01:26:08 PM »
Thank you very much. That's a very good description for my boss, haha...narc.