Wednesday, 19 May 2010


It has always been my opinion that "I hate confrontation". I've always struggled with it physically: blushed, wavery voice, shaky hands, tendency to tear up. And I'm no shrinking violet. While I react to confrontation, I don't shy away from it if it is necessary and I'm generally quite sucessful once embroiled in it.

So, this morning when I was publicly ambushed by a senior collegaue (not my boss as such but "a boss"), all the same physical reactions kicked in. I argued my case as firmly and quietly as I could manage, trying to find a resolution, apologising for misunderstandings but not backing down. And I didn't do badly. But it still felt horrible. Like I'd been mugged in front of other colleagues first thing in the morning and the rest of the day sitting not 10 foot away from this chap loomed ahead of me.

Anyway, this time, I didn't walk away from a confrontation, I sought another to properly resolve the problem on my terms. When he returned from the kitchen, no doubt satisfied that he'd swung his weight around and roughed me up a bit, I approached him and quietly but firmly asked to speak with him in private. Then I explained that I considered what he'd done to be unprofessional and inappropriate. That if he had a problem with something there was nothing stopping him raising it with me but he souldn't do so without warning in front of 3 colleagues and in a louder than normal tone. He listened and restated his original argument (which we'd already discussed) but I wouldn't let him turn away from my point until he'd acknowledged it, apologised and said he wouldn't do it again.

Then I made peace and really felt it. While my respect for him is zero (it was before today anyway) I can at least be pleasant and professional and I don't (always) want to punch him as I walk past his desk (which I do whenever I go anywhere in the office - the photocopier, the kitchen, meetings, anyway...). It may in fact have saved his life!

I don't think I would have been as calm and composed or as clear in my determination to resolve matters on my terms until I had first lost the bulk of my weight and secondly been through the TV programme thing. I've come a long way and feel more grown up (which I damn well should do at 40!) and less caring of how people view me. And it feels good.

But he's still a tosser.....


Ex Yo-Yo Dieter Debbie said...

Woohoo Lesley! I completely relate to what you said about "hating confrontation"...and I am so proud of you for sticking up for yourself in such an assertive way. Well done! I am patting you on the back from allll the way over here in Russia (I've got really long arms!)

BTW How goes it with the implant situation? I haven't seen any mention of it, so I'm thinking things are healing up okay for you. The worst of it is over for'll probably be happily surprised at the rest. Nice thing with implants? They can do a lot of the adjustments outside of your mouth!

I'll say it again...way to go on standing up for yourself. You are teaching him and your officemates that you deserve to be treated with respect and that you respect yourself!

Peridot said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peridot said...

I hate confrontation too and I am SO PROUD of you - you did amazingly! I hope you're on a high now - and that he feels as small as his penis no doubt is.

Have a good weekend.

Peridot x

Isabelle said...

Well done you!

Amber said...

No worries Lesley, I don't mind :) Have a nice day!


Lainster said...

Good for you! It takes a lot of balls to approach someone after the initial stromash.

I'm so impressed. I think I shall be taking a leaf out of your calm and collected book in the future.