Monday, 3 March 2008

She was mean, nasty, verbally abusive and no one liked her

Years ago mama worked as a "general laborer" on a packaging line. The factory probably had a couple of hundred employees. Mama worked day shift. Usually we both got home around 4:30pm. Friday was no exception, but this one Friday I will not forget.

We usually had supper around 5:30pm and this particular Friday it was quieter than usual. Our daughter, Jo, a nursing student was eating with us. Jo suddenly asked; "mom, are you crying?" I had not noticed. Mama nodded and smiled weakly and reassured us she was okay. "Whats the matter?" I asked. She proceeded to tell us what a miserable day she had at work.

Apparently another lady (term used loosely) chose to make Friday miserable for mama. She belittled her all day, cussed and swore at her and just made life "hell" for her that day. In the past many workers had refused to work with her. In fact at times this lady caused people to be fired and others had actually quit because of her. However, mama was able to survive the day but was not looking forward to going back on Monday. Suddenly my daughter looks at me and says; "what are you going to do about it dad ?!" My reaction was; "What?!" Not my problem I commented. I don't know anyone there even! Now in my self-defense; I love my wife and will always be her knight in shinning armor, but I did not think my involvement was "appropriate". My daughter bugged me all weekend. She knew if I got involved it would get resolved but not very pretty and would be ugly! Mama did not want that! She had to go back there to work. Now a little insight into my personality, I will work extremely hard to give you the benefit of the doubt - but don't even interpret that as weakness. Because the last place you want me is in your face!

Well enough of the story for now. You can speculate. Mama does not know I shared this much but I want her to finish this drama and give you her perspective. So stay tuned! If you are willing to share; What would you have done? We will be back later today. Mama just saw this and is contemplating her comments. 8:48 AM

Update 3:30PM EST
Hi - this is mama;

On Monday morning the "gal" wanted me to go to the bathroom with her. I was afraid she was trying to get me in trouble so I said wait until break time. She said our boss had given both of us permission to go into the bathroom.

I said ok but that I had work to do and couldn't take long. What I didn't know was most of my co-workers in that end of the warehouse already knew what this gal was talking about but I had NO idea. She started out by saying what a wonderful husband I had. She couldn't understand why he did what he did... she kept this up for a short time and I said i didn't know what she was talking about. Then she told me that my husband had sent her flowers with a card saying: "You are missing a great opportunity for a good friend in Judy!" Signed Judy's husband.
What a difference that made with the whole working group. Our boss said that was the first time anyone had tried being nice to get through to this gal. After that she was always nice to me right up until the day we moved away and I had to quit my job. Love you all, mama


Tam said...

After having spoke to and seen Mama, my little defenses shot straight up reading this even more than they would have normally. Don't mess with Mama people...come on!!!

What would I have done?

I'm not one to turn away from confrontation it really doesn't bother me at all. Before I chose to listen to the Spirit telling me I was rude and abrupt, my aggressive nature would get me in a pickle often. I'm much softer these probably would've said something after the first belittling. Maybe ask her if she realized what she just said. If she did, I would have responded how sad that makes me, but not for me, for her. Hurt people, hurt people. Then I'd have to see where it went from there.

I'm anxious to hear what Mama did.

Indian Lake Papa said...

Hi Tam - I just had mama do her update. Its at the bottom of the post.

I am not afraid of confrontation. But I do not try to agitate or aggravate. I try to make it a time for healing.

Indian Lake Papa said...

I think what mama was mostly concerned with was her testimony and not doing anything that would have an adverse affect on her relationship with Christ. I also did not want to make any issues that would hinder. After all - I think I know mama's tender heart. After Christ, it belongs to me! I feel so blessed to have her.

Tam said...

wow, didn't see that coming! That is awesome. "Paying back" with kindness!

That's it!

Darla said...

*a kind word turns away wrath.
*its kindness that brings us to repentance

*as my grammy would have said "You can kill a giant with kindness and they never see it coming!" LOL

Even Bullies have hearts, but i have to admit if I were there and it was before Jesus, I would hav laid her out! I got in lots of trouble when I saw someone picked on, just couldn't stand it...Jesus has held me back plenty...although at times I don't think I have enough Jesus yet :)

Indian Lake Papa said...

Yea Darla, if I had been working there it would have been a different story. Fortunately, I didn't get stupid. Mama is a very very special lady. Many say she has to be to put up with me! :o)

Robin said...

What a beautiful way to resolve a conflict! Thank you!

Indian Lake Papa said...

I really hate conflict Robin. It is so destructive. Mama's relationship turned out well with the lady. They actually did some favors for each other later on. Never really close friends but good work associates.

Ed said...

I am afraid one of my character flaws has been being too confrontational.

I might have let the situation go the first time around but I would have been in the other person's face the second time.

Papa, that was a brilliant solution I would never have thought of. You have just taught me a lesson that I should try and practice. Of course I never get into any arguments with people anymore. :)

CrossView said...

Wow! Just wow! I called the kids over to share this. As my 18-yr old said; "That's really thinking outside the box!"

Thanks to you both for sharing this. And thank you for a great homeschooling lesson! LOL!

Indian Lake Papa said...

ED - confrontation is always easy - when your right. If I know I am right I can be sure to tell you right away. Giving the other person a "way out" is usually the best though. No one likes to be boxed in to a corner.

Crossview - It is always a challenge to do the right thing - especially if we have to go outside the box to do it.

brandy said...

Great Story!! Love it!!
Glad I got here after the rest was added. ;-) What a brilliant way to go about it! :D