Speaking up to PD coworker

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VividImagination

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Speaking up to PD coworker
« on: October 17, 2017, 10:13:32 AM »
I know you all are shocked that I'm having trouble calling a PD coworker out on her behavior, but yes. I'm getting angry with myself because there is one behavior that has been popping up, I've not had the nerve to address it, and my silence seems to be acceptance to her. I don't like it, but I don't want to be inappropriate, either.

If someone has an unpleasant or unfortunate situation, PDc will smirk condescendingly and say, sugary sweet, "I'm so SORRY" in a tone that lets you know she is anything but. Problem is, the entire thing is COMPLETELY deniable on her end.

I want to say, "I don't appreciate your condescending, smirky little sneer. Don't speak to me that way again" but that will trigger a crying victim tantrum to our supervisor. Supervisor is well aware of PD's issues, but I'm obviously not trying to cause problems for myself. The dirty stare from me isn't sinking in for her.

Suggestions, other than just ignoring? That has only encouraged the behavior as she sees silence as acceptance.
There are three solutions to every problem: accept it, change it, or leave it. If you cannot accept it, change it. I f you cannot change it, leave it.

Sometimes you're damned if you don't and damned if you do, so damn well do what's best for you.

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Shell92127

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2017, 10:24:28 AM »
LAUGH out loud? Or chuckle to yourself as if you are recalling a funny joke? Or any sort of
response that confuses her? And makes her wonder?

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clara

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2017, 02:12:47 PM »
How about "no, you're not" and just walk away?  Sorry, that's about all I've got, but I've seen it in action and it can work because I had to resort to it on my job.  And I said it to my narc co-worker because I was tired of her constant phony "apologies" over situations she caused and which was a constant source of problems in the department.  And she'd give these "apologies" in a sickly-sweet condescending manner that told you she was anything but--she was just doing it to shut you up or make cover or even as sorry-not-sorry.  But she seemed to believe that saying sorry made it all all right and should be forgotten about.  And one day I got fed up and answered back, "no, you're not" in the coldest, most neutral voice I could manage (as if I was simply stating a fact and there was no arguing with it) and went back to my work.

She said nothing, did nothing, and left.  I'm sure she ran immediately to our manager, who was also her best friend, but I don't know.  There were no repercussions against me and if my manager was angry, she knew better than to escalate the situation.  What I do know is not long after that point, other people started calling her on her behavior and some even put their feelings in writing.  I know our receptionist overheard the exchange and she likely may have said something to others (as she also despised this co-worker).

Anyway, there's my two cents!

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coyote

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2017, 02:23:46 PM »
I think I'd do something like, "Too bad you really aren't" or "you know, it's a shame you feel so bad about yourself you have to try and make others feel bad", in a quiet voice and walk away. Try to avoid having witnesses to your response.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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notrightinthehead

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2017, 04:13:42 AM »
I have done the passive aggressive, sickly sweet and condescending "I'm sure you are" with a big toothy smile back.
I can't hate my way into loving myself.

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DJR

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2017, 06:43:12 AM »
Hi Vivid,

How about "your words don't match your actions. I don't think you are genuinely sorry."

I think you should avoid saying something like "smirky little sneer" because she might report those words. Choose some words that are truthful, and can't be twisted by her to make her look like the victim.

Good luck.

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VividImagination

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2017, 09:17:15 AM »
Thanks for the feedback...good food for thought. No I'm definitely not planning to say anything that she can use against me. I'm trying to walk the fine line between not  reinforcing her PD with silence (enabling) or responding in a way that matches hers (disrespectful). I've worked really hard over the last several years to unlearn fleas and unhealthy behaviors.

I think I'll respond with "your tone and face don't seem sorry at all". When she shoots back with "That's SARCASM!" (insert another smirk because I'm apparently too dumb to understand) I can reply, "No, that's RUDE. Major difference."

Nothing that can be reported (she's well known for being rude and insensitive) and I've set a boundary on how she is allowed to speak to me.

I love how we help each other think through things. I'll let you know how it works out.
There are three solutions to every problem: accept it, change it, or leave it. If you cannot accept it, change it. I f you cannot change it, leave it.

Sometimes you're damned if you don't and damned if you do, so damn well do what's best for you.

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coyote

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2017, 12:19:41 PM »
Vivid I have to say I like your idea the best.  I love the idea of not reinforcing our fleas and not stepping down to her level. I guess I am too quick sometimes to go to the snide side. Thanks for the reminder of what that does to us.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you wonít feel harmed. Donít feel harmed and you havenít been. -Marcus Aurelius

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VividImagination

  • Fear is not real; it is a product of the thoughts you create. Danger is very real, but fear is a choice. - After Earth
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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2017, 01:51:30 PM »
Me too, coyote...I became known as Queen of Sarcasm because I couldn't cope any other way. I still love it, but I've learned to use it for humor, not belittling.
There are three solutions to every problem: accept it, change it, or leave it. If you cannot accept it, change it. I f you cannot change it, leave it.

Sometimes you're damned if you don't and damned if you do, so damn well do what's best for you.

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JollyJazz

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2017, 02:33:48 AM »
Quote
I think I'll respond with "your tone and face don't seem sorry at all".

Yes, that sounds great! Other variations could be saying something like 'Really? you don't sound sorry.' or 'Really? Your tone of voice doesn't sound sorry.' Gets to the point and is factual. You can adopt a questioning / neutral tone and still be assertive and addressing the issue head on.

Good on you for saying something! I had recently been pondering how to respond to a similar type of put down that was conveyed through the tone of voice ...

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Wilderhearts

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2017, 07:05:21 PM »
I think it's great to respond in a way that shows she's not fooling you, but also does *not* open the conversation up to an argument - i.e. you're not escalating or fighting with fleas.  I tried giving a PD a taste of her own medicine once - cloaking irritation with that sickly sweet smile (why don't we have a barf emoji?), and she just upped the ante on me, finding more things to nitpick in her sickly sweet way.  I would not recommend that.

Good on you for deciding you need to set boundaries around her insincere apologies and condescension.  Stick with your simple statements about what you see and hear, and stay away from accusations that she could start debating you on, like anything about her intentions or feeling genuinely sorry. 

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NoVoice357

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Re: Speaking up to PD coworker
« Reply #11 on: October 29, 2017, 08:20:01 AM »
Just to add that whatever you decide to tell her, avoid using emotional language (narcissistic supply).