I work closely with a lovely woman, and I'm really concerned for her emotional and mental health.
She’s been suffering for the last few months in her relationship with her husband of three years.
He’s an alcoholic who is newly sober and has struggled through it. Last weekend he had a few drinks - the first time in months.
She also learned he’s been looking at porn online and hiding financial obligations from her.
As her direct supervisor I know there isn't much in the way of help I can offer or force her into seeking.
But I’d like to have some key phrases or some advice to give her.
I’ve suggested Alcoholics’ Anonymous, plus seeing a counsellor. She’s been seeing a therapist, but I don't know if she’s discussing new issues (it's more to talk about her abusive relationship history).
I’m trying to be supportive as a supervisor and a friend.
Stymied for Suggestions
You’re already being supportive by listening and showing that you care.
Be aware, however, that she may be reluctant to tell even a friendly supervisor all that worries her, for fear it might appear to affect her work performance.
Assure her that 1) she’s not alone; 2) any help you can provide, you’ll do so… from listening, to helping seek other counselling and financial advice for the current situation.
Also, 3) assure her that she can have time off work if needed for professional appointments.
4) suggest that she join an Al-Anon group for the information and support of others living with alcoholics and those going through recovery.
5) respect her indication of when she wants to be private. But, if you detect signs of increased abuse, offer to accompany her to police and/or to a shelter for her safety.
I have a daughter, and one granddaughter age 10. I’ve never been allowed to have the girl to my home.
My daughter says it’s too far for me to drive (less than an hour).
I was previously allowed "dates" with her to go on outings, but they stopped when my granddaughter became busier with outside activities.
I’ve had two emotionally abusive marriages, the first to my daughter’s father who emotionally abused her, too.
She was witness to the disrespect he showed me, and it affects how she now treats me.
It seems my granddaughter also learned from her mother's example.
She’s started to ignore me when I speak to her, or to talk back to me. My daughter doesn’t correct her actions.
How does one stay in contact with a grandchild who has no interest in interaction with you?
Keep a door open to your granddaughter.
She’s young enough that there’s hope for her to become critical herself of her mother’s rudeness to you, and to be curious why she hasn’t been encouraged to have a relationship.
Remember that she’s her own person, and not just part of a chain of emotionally abusive relationships.
Send her birthday, Christmas, end-of-school occasion cards. Offer to take her to a film she’d like, or to a special show like the ballet. Just by your efforts, she’ll be more interested in her grandmother.
I’m 18 and unsure how to come out to my family as bisexual. I feel very overwhelmed emotionally and physically.
You obviously care a great deal about your family indicating that they have always cared about you. Trust them. Explain what you can and ask for their understanding.
I worked at this cafe and I hated every single minute of it.
I was being bullied by a person who says he's the owner, when it’s his son who bought the place instead of him.
I was sick and tired of taking crap from him, so I stormed out of the cafe screaming, "I QUIT!"
Was I unprofessional in that scenario? Does an incident like that make the owner of the cafe look bad?
It’s good to reflect when you realize that your own reaction was over the top.
The circumstances may’ve been difficult, but it was the owner whom you should’ve seen to discuss it.
You may still have decided to quit, but screaming publicly did nothing to make things better, and clearly left you feeling out of control and awkward about it.
Contact the real owner and apologize, but explain your frustration. It’ll make you feel better about yourself, no matter his response.
Tip of the day:
Stay watchful when someone you know is struggling with an abusive relationship.