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Question
Posted by: shane | 2004/12/18

bullying boss

I work in a high stress environment. I have had drug problems in the past ( my employer knows about this) and consider myself lucky to hold the position i am in.
I am extremely sensitive to criticism and respond in a mixture of fear and extreme anger to a bullying boss who is unaware of my past.
I feel myself often belittled by him and even though he has this attitude to everyone, I think it affects me more because of my low self esteem.
Furthermore he is unapproachable, and hides behind a facade of anger and abuses his position.
I do not feel in a position strong enough to stand up to him in lieu of my previous history.
He runs the departament and even though my employer often tells me not to take things to heart I cannot but feel redundant when this ogre is around.
In a confrontation who will stand up for a ex - junkie ?

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Our expert says:
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This is actually quite a good example of why I feel that ANY treatment for ANY form of drug problem 8is inadequate unless it includes a period of skilled counselling. For any number of reasons we may become over-sensitive to criticism, and this may predispose us to get into drug problems in the first place, seeking chemical ways to boost our sense of self-confidence and to dull our awareness of potential slights or criticisms. This can be effectively dealt with in counselling, and can remove one of the predicposing factors that increase our vulnerability to drug abuses.
Seeing a psychologist / counsellor could help you to appropriately boost your self-esteem, identify stress triggers and how to cope with them, and how to make yourself less sensitive to the boss's bullying. Is there a HR dept at work with which you can discus some of your purely work-related concerns ?
It's not easy, in office skirmishes, to stand up for an active junkie, but why shouldn't people stand up for an EX-junkie who has shown himself capable of good work ?

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