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Friday, October 14, 2011

Healing Wounds

I’ve been advised by a friend who I deeply respect to let go of the past and move into the future. I think he is perplexed as to my returning often in my writing to my experience of workplace bullying. I want him to know I am stuck--though not on the past--but on his recommendation.  For you see I do not see myself as stuck in recollections of that place of abuse. 

I want my dear friend to understand how writing about that surreal environment; talking about it; just processing every nuance of it, is healing for me; that I find relief in words on paper.  

Mine is, I think, a unique experience of a tiresome issue-bullying.  Even as I became an unwitting adult victim of bullying, I was working hard at keeping children safe from the same. 

 I want my friend also to know that I hold no bitterness—quite the opposite; I have relief, joy and exuberance now that I am gone from there.  I feel sorrow for those who remain.  

Still though, he may be right.  Maybe for once and for all I need to get this out, on paper and be done with it.  

So, I have decided to tell my story to you.  I will tell it as I experienced it.  I will tell you now that what I write may seem trivial.  It may seem that I was just way too sensitive.  I was not.  Even when my husband would ask, “How was your day?” and I could respond, “Good.  He left me alone,” I felt dread about the next day and the one after that.  

I will give to you also the words of my bully and his followers.  I will give them to you from their own testimonies during an investigation of ethics violations.  The violations were deemed unfounded and all have remained in their positions.  I am no longer working there.    

There was, from the time I first opened that school's doors and entered, an under current of suspicion and mistrust.  I balanced there, not knowing exactly why I felt uncertain.  I just knew that I needed extra vigilance to remain steady.  Over time it proved impossible.  

Workplace bullying leaves scars. Staying in places of workplace violence and bullying leaves gaping wounds. The dynamics of bullying, whether for children or for adults, are much the same.  Yet even though I was an Olweus Bullying Prevention Program trainer, I did not yet understand how the different roles of the Bullying Circle applied to my being a target.  I knew I was targeted by a school leader.  He routinely (and it appeared to me with some gusto) would pass me and say things like this:  “We must talk.  There have been complaints; I may have to write you up; That’s miscommunication number two.”  

I knew he
 and his followers had lied--or at least twisted truth-- on official documents about me; what I had seen, done and said--twice.  He knew I had not supported the testimony.  He knew I had told the truth. 

Next--and until I am ready to stop--I will continue my story.  It is my story.  It most definitely is not unfounded.


11:04 pm edt          Comments

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Click here for my district's bullying and harassment policy. You will see I have made comments....