I’m eating healthier and joined a gym. This is due to my doctor recommending that I lose weight, as I have a body mass index (BMI) of 30.2, which is considered obese (Ellie: for her height and other indices).
Two co-workers have had gastric bypass surgery as they were morbidly obese.
I’ve been supportive of them. But they’ve made comments, e.g. "You're already skinny, why are you going to the gym?" "I hate when skinny people act like they're fat.”
They’re aware that my doctor recommended that I lose 20 to 30 pounds.
I understand, because even after surgery and a year of exercise and healthy eating, one woman’s still over 50 pounds heavier than me.
But their passive-aggressive comments upset me.
What can I say to someone who takes it personally that I want to lose weight?
Should I ignore it? Tell them off?
I no longer talk to them about working out, but I do talk to other coworkers about healthy recipes, exercises, etc.
What's a nice way to say that I’m taking care of my health before I need surgical intervention?
Drop any thoughts of comparisons to their overweight, you’ll only come across as mean and create true hostility.
Healthy body/healthy mind is a connection to take seriously.
You’re looking after yourself, wisely, but don’t let these digs occupy your thoughts or cause stress (which easily contributes to eating/weight issues.)
Ignore their comments, and keep away from the topic with them.
You do understand that they’re coming from envy and discomfort, so why scratch that itch?
Be kind. When you want to share recipes and tips with others, do it privately over lunch, or just not in the two critics’ presence.
Recently, I took a new amazing job doing what I love, with more pay, more responsibility.
On my third day, I found a beer in the fridge, and smelled pot. I then saw the small office staff outside huddled with a joint and a bottle of booze.
The manager was out there too… everyone except me.
I stuck it out and the manager put her foot down about this and other things they were doing.
However, they’ve all reverted back! I’m under so much stress trying to get my stuff done on time, but also handling all the incoming calls from different locations when the others leave the office.
I confided in another employee because they don’t walk out when he’s there. He said something to them so I thought it was fixed.
NOPE. I saw drug deals in front of my eyes inside the office, which reeks of the smell.
The owner is aware and DOES NOT CARE since he’s a user of this and harder drugs.
I’m looking for other jobs but want to secure a new job before I quit this one.
If I report the staff to the cops, they’d know it was me and might retaliate, or they’d all be arrested and I’d still be out of a job.
How do I handle this?
A Different Workplace
Get a new job as soon as you can. The discomfort for you at this one outweighs the benefits.
You’re being overworked while others party.
Come up with a plausible reason for your leaving so you can get a decent recommendation. Then leave.
Ratting on your co-workers could be a costly mistake, for the very reasons you state.
If the boss encourages that atmosphere, he especially won’t appreciate your disapproval or involving police.
A long-time friend retired after years of an absorbing career at which he excelled.
He soon became depressed and any previous thoughts of travel, volunteering, etc., fell away.
His wife, also retired (they’re both mid-60s) became insecure about their income after years of high earnings.
It’s very difficult to have a logical conversation with them about any of this, or to encourage them.
My wife’s conversations with his wife end in listening to tears and anxieties. She can’t take it anymore.
They won’t go to counselling because they think it’s shameful. They hardly go out.
Is there anything friends can do?
Feeling Helpless and Concerned
If they have adult children, contact them and ask whether they’re aware of all this, and whether they’ve considered some kind of intervention.
If not, raise the idea of the children getting professional advice (e.g. a specialist in geriatric psychology/psychiatry) about how to move their parents toward positive changes.
Tip of the day:
Obesity and weight-loss are sensitive personal topics best not discussed publicly at work.