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My boss is my former bully

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My boss is my former bully Empty My boss is my former bully

Post by DazedAndConfused Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:18 am

So I've gotten a temporary job to take care of stuff like rent and, you know, life expenses in general.

But of course it wouldn't be another chapter in Dazed's life if there wasn't a social problem to solve.

Namely, my boss is a guy who used to bully me in high school. Oh joy. I don't think he recognized me, and I'm not doing anything to make him recognize me, but the idea of working for a guy who regularly treated me like shit isn't exactly my idea of a dream job.On the other hand I need this job and I hope he won't be as bad as a boss as he was as a high school student. Also the job is a temporary one so I can deal with this situation for a few months.

The problem is that I think I can deal with this situation just fine as long as he doesn't remember who I am, but how should I act in case he recognizes me (which could happen, sooner or later)? I'm still pretty pissed at him for what he did, and the last thing I want is to share old high school memories with him.

I'm willing to let bygones be bygones and be perfectly polite and professional if he treats me as a stranger, but I'm thinking about what to do in case he doesn't.

I thought about pretending not to remember him, though I wonder whether that could be seen as rude. Since the guy is my boss the last thing I want is to antagonize him over what happened years ago. On the other hand I really don't want to end up talking about our high school shenanigans.

So what's the best script to use in case he comes to me and says "Hey, I remember you!"?


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Post by reboot Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:34 am

There are a but they are all variations on "I remember you too" (change subject) and keep changing the subject if he brings up the past.

Odds are that he will not remember things the way you do. My friends who have run into their bullies as adults have almost universally been disappointed in the reaction if they bring up the past. The bully either claims not to recall it at all or even recalls them being friends so it always ended up frustrating or angering them.

If he brings up the bullying and apologizes, you can simply say, "I acknowledge your apology" if you are not prepared to accept it. If working with him is too tough, start looking for a new job.
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Post by litterature Mon Apr 25, 2016 2:27 pm

People change over time and bullying is an integral part of society as it is, so he probably doesn't even see it as something he has to take responsibility for, or maybe won't even have any distinct notion of having bullied you at all - I'm always shocked that whenever I tell my parents that people used to beat me up at school, they act very surprised and say they didn't know, when in fact I couldn't stay at any single school for too long and I'm pretty sure they used to ask me about my bruises!
But if it gets to you I agree with reboot that it's probably a good idea to start looking for a new job.


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