FRIDAY OPEN THREAD: How Do You Stand Up For Yourself Like A Boss At Work?

Hello, power suits! It’s time for the Friday Open Thread and given what a topsy-turvy nightmare this past week has been, I want to focus on a productive outlet for our collective rage, and something I think we need to celebrate and encourage: standing up for your goddamn self at work.

Intimidating? You bet. Necessary? That too. So let’s talk about it! I’ll start.

Ever since I moved to DC, I’ve been exhausted by one particular aspect of my life here: my commute. There are (quite literally) many steps involved, and I’ve realized over the past few months that as a disabled person, the way I’ve been getting to work just isn’t physically sustainable. It’s not a matter of being lazy or out of shape (thanks, internalized ableism!), but the straight up fact that I have cerebral palsy. I’d cut my commute time in half and arrive at full strength if I started driving in. But a parking space is not standard here. So making that change meant having to do something I’d never done before: ask for a workplace accommodation.

The irony, of course, is that I work at a disability rights organization — so that kind of request shouldn’t freak me out. But oh, reader, it did! I felt like it was fine for other people to ask for accommodations, but that I didn’t really need one so did I really need to trouble my bosses like that? Especially as the new person on staff? Spoiler alert: that’s not how the ADA works and this is exactly the kind of thing that counts as an accommodation, actually. So I did that thing where I thought through every possible scenario and about 75 different alternatives if they said no, delayed asking at least three times, and finally laid it all out there: look, I’ve been doing my job well, but I want to do it better, and here’s how I can. It’s an easy fix.

They said yes. And yeah, it has been pretty revelatory to have so much more energy all of a sudden. I can go out after work! I can run errands after work! I’m not panicked all the time! And I am, in fact, better at my job! But if I, in pretty much the most privileged situation imaginable for this scenario, had such a hard time even getting up the gumption to ask for what I needed, this needs to be a bigger conversation (especially for queer folks). That’s where you come in.

So let’s hear it: how have you asserted yourself at work recently? What on-the-job victories do you want to celebrate? How did you make them happen? And if you’re looking for advice on how, exactly, to become the professional BAMF you’ve always dreamed of, put your questions out here too. May we all achieve our goals as we smash the patriarchy in every industry, amen.

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Carrie's body is weird and she's making that work for her. She lives in DC by way of Los Angeles and has a conflicted relationship with social media, but you can follow her on Twitter and Instagram anyway.

Carrie has written 83 articles for us.


  1. This is something I have had trouble with as a female minority woman attorney in a conservative workplace. I know I’m not good at this and I’m so happy to see an open thread on this topic because I would love some new ideas for how to be more effective and assertive

  2. I am so excited to see this thread! I don’t even normally comment on Friday open threads but this is a thing I have lots of thoughts on. Lawchick, I am a female attorney in a nonprofit union gig and I still have trouble standing up for myself so you have my sympathy. I find that what works best for me is to have a private conversation with the person and plan out what I’m going to say in advance, thinking about what two or three key points I feel I need to communicate and not expecting to “win” or accomplish anything other than having said my piece. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily apply if the person has the power to fire you or you are not comfortable being alone with them (and frankly at that point maybe it’s time to get HR involved and/or find a new job if you can). I’ve also built a support network within the office of people I trust, who I can talk to about the situation, seek advice, or vent to about the person who I’m having a problem with. If you’re in BigLaw that may be harder to do because you may not have many people who you can trust, but you could try building community with other attorneys who share your experiences at other firms or who you went to law school with. Finally, find a mentor. You don’t have to formally call them that, but if you have an experienced person in your firm or in your field who you can go to for advice, that’s an invaluable resource and once you have built that relationship there’s nothing wrong with going to them for advice about how to handle a delicate or difficult office situation.

    • I second the mentoring motion hard; that’s been invaluable in so many different ways. Thank you for all this solid advice!

  3. My on-the-job victory today is: I was invited onto a podcast to talk about my book, and I got to speak about fighting the erasure of queer history, and about not treating women & sex workers & queer people as disposable (in fiction and beyond), and about how right now more than ever it’s important to have women and nb folks’ voices and stories be heard. The interview went well and even though I feel like a tiny voice speaking into a giant sh*tstorm, I was so glad to be able to be share my thoughts.

    Sending love to all our queer family today.

    And Carrie, thank you for being awesome and putting your energy toward political change! I’m cheering for you!

    • Hooray for the tiny voices screaming into the shitstorm! Living in DC is that, perpetually, so I get that. Congratulations on speaking up!

  4. So needed this earlier this week. I was given an assignment to design some lapel pins with very little to no art direction, only verbiage. When my boss followed up asking about progress, I told him it’s a bit difficult to design something with no spec’s. I asked him who the target market was. He finally admitted, “Bro’s. To give to hot chicks.” Uuuggggghhhhh. How fucking tone deaf can you be, given the times? I told him, “Ew. gross. Now the verbiage makes sense.”
    He just laughed. I wanted to tell him how uncomfortable this made me, but I didn’t. I’m basically the art department so its not like I can pass this assignment on to someone else. My girlfriend told me to just tell him but its not that easy. I submitted some designs but I’m really hoping the project goes nowhere. How can you be creative with shit like this?

    • Yuck. I’m really sorry you’re stuck with his whole deal right now. I’ve (somehow) never been in a workplace like that but a really good friend used to write copy for a tabloid and whenever she ran up against something particularly gross in that regard, she would say “don’t you think that’s kind of tacky?” They wouldn’t respond to being told something was offensive, or out of touch, or whatever, but for some reason “tacky” did it for them. So perhaps figuring out a framing that works for this particular guy can help you press the issue?

      • Thanks, Carrie. I’m currently trying to formulate a way to get out of this, as I felt really gross while designing it after finding out how these were going to be used. I knew I should have designed them all using Comic Sans and Papyrus! Haha. My boss is very much a “Bro” himself and noted that it was for a buddy of his, which only makes it a bit more difficult. Still hoping it works out. Thanks again for the advice!

  5. I thought you opened this FOT with “Hello, power sluts!” on first read and honestly was totally here for it. Power SUITs are good, too.

  6. I work in a worker-owned co-op and its hard but very cool. We put a lot of energy to standing up for each other, which is nicer than putting a lot of energy into standing up to each other.

  7. I’ve been making an effort to say “no” without offering a long-winded apologetic explanation and changing the way I present myself and my abilities to be more positive. I’ve been listening to a lot of the early episodes of The Guilty Feminist podcast in the last few months and there’s been a lot about the way women are socialised to behave and how to challenge that in yourself so I’ve been using that. Still got a long way to go but it feels good!

    I might have to assert myself soon in a way that could cause some big problems for me but now instead of being anxious about that I’m like “fight me!” Which I probably shouldn’t actually say to my boss’s boss but I’m not backing down if it comes to it.

  8. Ok, so this is not a very recent story, but it’s still a good one.

    A few years ago I just started as a young M.D. in a office job – working as what is best translated as social insurance doc? Basically I checked if people where eligible for disability and disease benefits. In a country with a pretty good social welfare system, fraud can be a profitable venture – we needed to filter these out. An interesting job. (Fun fact: I’m actually on disability leave right now, so, yeah, weird)

    Enough background. I started this job together with a group of 4 female and 2 male docs. The guys started 2 weeks before the gals by coincidence. Since it wasn’t a popular place to work, and they were in high demand for (young) docs they gave us a lot of extras. Free lunches, training, a group dinner to get to know people. As a civil servant, pretty damn good. I did not complain.

    After a few months one of my female colleagues came to my office. She awkwardly asked if I were willing to discuss my salary with here. We talked and she had found out that all of the female docs from this small group were paid significantly less than our male colleagues.

    All the female colleagues discussed this with our manager in a 1 on 1 convo. I’m pretty sure one of them threatened to quit if we weren’t payed equally. I told him that it had all the earmarks of a very sexist management. (Without actually accusing them.) Seeing him squirm was secretly kind of awesome. (His counter argument was that the national agreements on salary had changed in the 2 weeks between when the guys and the gals started. I actually believe him)

    The management had to a. keep us, b.keep us happy, c. not get into a scandal about discrimination.

    In the end all the female docs got a raise of about €200 a month.

    Lesson from this long story: if you are lucky enough to work in a situation where there is more demand than supply, and the management cannot afford to be seen as discriminating, imply sexism and get a major raise. :)

  9. That is great news you have more energy and time for things you want to do after work. I tried to recall, but I don’t think I have many on the job victories in recent times. I’m self employed and work with my father so sometimes we clash and other times it’s easy. I think the closest thing to a victory I can say is, I got my father to use certain words less often. for example using like instead of want to customers, but that’s about it.

    How is everyone’s week going? Mines has been fairly good, minus some relatives acting like they have privilege like many white men do. Frustrating, but I am giving up on them for my own health. I had a very good Friday night at Cuties for flirt night. Like it way better than bar and clubs as people want to talk, and actually meet new people. Plus, there were soo many cute gals and non-binary pals there; ugh, I’m so queer! If you are in the area they have an even Saturday and Sunday, which the latter I will be at. They are close to their goal of keeping the place open, but they need people to show up.

    I spent my Sunday hiking alone, which gave me time to think. Is it weird to want to date someone who has many of the characteristics of a close friend/bff, or is that a bit weird? Also, how is everyone staying upbeat on dating sites when no real matches are coming up(or replying back)? I’m feeling a little deflated here.

    It was a nice day to be outdoors as blue skies were out and the weather’s still warm.

    Thank you for viewing and reading my post. Have a positive and safe weekend! Take self-care measures if you need to, even if it’s just a long shower or an extra cup of tea, as it might be a long weekend and even week.

  10. Yes! I stood up for my own needs/comfort in so many ways this week! I’m in grad school and it’s my thesis writing term. So first thing this week was asking the professor of our theory class to reconsider our weekly papers that were taking far too many hours to complete and diverting my energy and time away from thesis writing. He got rid of the papers! which will now save me about 3-4hrs a week!!! Then in a meeting to discuss our program writing retreat soon, I inquired why someone who is not writing his thesis was going, and said I wasn’t comfortable with him being there (cause I know he has a history of being sexually violent and other awful things). Plus my saying something allowed another person to be more comfortable saying she also wasn’t comfortable with him. So now he isn’t, cause the comfort of us who are writing our thesis is more important. Then I decided to skip a pointless class to buy poetry books and get pizza to take a break from school stuff for a minute. Not sure where all the energy and capacity to stick up for myself came from but I’m very glad I had it this week.

  11. I did this yesterday and am still having anxious feelings about it but totally glad I did!

    Re: Some dude accidentally slammed my finger in the fridge. It hurt really, just a whole lot. And the first thing he does is LAUGH. Now if this was me I would have immediately gone into a fit of apologies and “are you okay?” statements. He mumbled a weak “sorry” at some point but it was WEAK and post laughter. SO I immediately dressed him down in as professional a way I could. I said “Just so you know, that really, really hurt and your laughter is not appreciated.” Then I walked away.

    UGH. Middle school at the office is really great.

  12. Yesterday at our all staff meeting, a straight white woman gave a presentation to the group (all but 5 people in the room are straight and white) about diversity and the responses from our “diversity focus groups”. I seethed the whole time and whisper yelled “fucking duh” to my friend every time the presenter made an obvious statement like “LGBT and African American respondents cited interest in a safe and welcoming environment in which they can be themselves”. I felt so frustrated for all the people of color in the room who just had to sit there calmly and quietly absorbing this shit. Finally at the end of the presentation, some straight people were making like really myopic comments and I finally shot my hand up and yelled “HOW CAN I JOIN THE DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION COMMITTEE? Because this is really important to me!” 4 different upper level people made a point to come talk to me about my “enthusiasm”. I’m about to go to this meeting, kick down the door with my combat boots, and queer this whole thing up!

  13. Last year, i finally decided that during a rugby game, I would bring my own water bottle and swap it for one of the communal bottles that get brought onto the pitch, with my name on it, and let no one else use it. Because I’m immunosuppressed. And this is a perfectly logical solution to sharing water bottles with 20 other people every week. But i put it off for three years! Because it feels like making a fuss, and the whole team had to be informed that i am a special sunflower who can’t just drink water like everyone else. But friends, having a winter with only 3 colds, instead of one 4 month long uber cold is just THE GREATEST.
    And guess what, no one minds. Theyre perfectly fine with it. It was all a worry in my own head.

    Anyways, happy friday, how are you?

    • Gilbert, this is definitely totally inappropriate, but I am mentally replacing every use of “water bottle” with “diva cup.” “I’m a special sunflower who has to get thrown across a muddy field wearing my own diva cup and not just the communal one.”

  14. Because I’m self-employed, I have to stand up for myself a lot in some ways, but I’m also not very good at it in other ways. I have to keep saying things like “No, that takes more time and you’ll have to pay me for that time” or “No, it doesn’t matter how much extra you pay me” or “Actually, I’m right and your end-client is just an asshole”. I’m good at that stuff, because it’s low risk compared to the suffering I endure if I don’t stand up for myself.

    But I’m also bad at negotiating anything, like my fee, with an existing client. It’s not that I’m bad at it, as such, I guess, but it’s high risk that I don’t want to take. I risk losing work that is otherwise guaranteed, that I really can’t afford to lose. I have this big client that really needs to start paying me more, for example, but I won’t talk to them about it until I have a partial replacement lined up and that has been taking soooo much time.

  15. A bright light in all this Kavanaugh crap – Officer Jason van Dyke found guilty of second-degree murder and sixteen counts of aggravated battery with a firearm in the 2014 killing of Laquan McDonald, an unarmed black teenager.

  16. I’m reallllllly bad for standing up for myself in basically every situation, and even though my boss is the sweetest woman, I still don’t stand up for myself. I’m working on it. I did get a massive arm tattoo this week, which isn’t necessarily standing up for myself, but it’s me being an autonomous adult making decisions about my body and life, so there’s that!

    Love and light, you beautiful humans. <3

  17. I try to set up a dynamic where I help other people stand up for themselves and/or we can stand up together! I also like to lift people up at my job, emailing their managers to give them a shout out when they do a good job. I think it’s a good practice in general. For myself, I try to frame difficult conversations by setting myself and the other person as being on the same side. We’re both here to get the work done, and to do a good job. I think that makes any issue less contentious/more conciliatory. You can be firm and establish boundaries and still (usually) make the person feel like you both have each others’ backs, ultimately. Take all of this with a grain of salt, as I am aware & grateful that I have a pretty good work environment already. But this way of thinking has helped me in work and in many other parts of my life, and has changed the way I view “confrontation” in general.

  18. As a TA, it’s important to be able to provide full support when needed. However, I do like to be clear that I am quite capable of taking charge, and ensuring that the dynamic always remains respectful, however temporary the position. Dressing in a way that makes me feel more confident I find can help in this regard.

  19. I stood up leaving my job, actually. Not a great tip, tbh.
    It wasn’t easy, I was making a ridiculously amount of money but I was away of my friends and family and I was so miserable that I wasn’t giving what my patients deserved (I’m a MD). I just didn’t feel like giving in to the system so early after graduation. Now I’ll earn significantly less but I hope to have time to care for my patients like they need and deserve!

    • That sounds like a great decision. The job will take it out of you even with lots of self care but you know that already.

      Good Luck with your new position and enjoy your life with friends and family.

  20. I am a recovering people-pleaser, so this is hard for me. My dad would always shut me right down whenever I had something to say. Slowly, gradually, I’ve been learning that other people out there aren’t like that! It took me about a year to learn that my supervisor’s behavior would not be monsterous and unpredictable! :). My job is starting to send me to more clients’ homes, and since I don’t drive, this has been a logistical challenge, between planning paratransit trips a few days in advance, or taking Lyft rides which are more expensive without planning. I’m going to need to ask that someone else do those home visits soon, and I’m already shaking in my boots! :)

  21. Hope it ‘s okay to express in this forum how absolutely gutted I was by Collins ‘ speech today. To anyone out there struggling today, I <3 you

  22. carrie! so glad that you were able to ask for what you needed and receive it and greatly improve your quality of life.

    i work for myself and don’t have a great story to share, i’ve just been alternately crying and numb about the senate and kavanaugh and the general horror that is our country and wanted to be here with y’all. sending so much love to all of you in this community.

  23. I’m lucky, because I never was in a job situation where I had to stand up. Every job I had (usher, teacher, administrative work), I just had to ask politely and I got what I wanted. Also, I always think that I’m right and I’m ready to prove it, so people easily give up when confronted with me !

    This past week has been hard. College is HARD. I hate being a student. I love to work, to do real stuff. I’m learning primary school education (not in the US), and all of our teacher are university teacher who don’t know ANYTHING about children or primary school, but because they read a lot in some academic publication, they think they know.
    I’m boiling down during classes, and I’m getting ready to meet with some people to give an honest opinion about our curriculum and how not ready we are for our test or just being a teacher.

    THis week my depression has been acting out. I don’t know what to do and I don’t want to see a therapist. My able-bodied friends don’t understand why I don’t want to see another doctor to whom I will have to tell my whole life story (wich is easy to do when, like, you see two doctors a year. I see a dozen of them). I don’t want to overhelm my friends with my depression, but I need somewhere to express myself, wich I haven’t found yet. Also, while I don’t really follow the whole Kavanaugh thing (we have enough on our plate in my own country), I just feel like my past is more and more a weight, a secret I can not keep anymore. I want to shout it everywhere but I also don’t want anybody to know about it.

  24. It’s exhausting. I don’t think I engaged enough, but I do occasionally. I pretty much have like one person who is on my wavelength, politically. It’s a bummer.

    I will say this though – the most benign statements would throw them off kilter… or in the very least, would cause them to start whispering their boring opinions in my presence? And I mean simple stuff like “Well, I like Kaepernick” or “I don’t feel hindered by ‘PC’ culture.” That’s at least one funny thing!

  25. This is ever so slightly off topic but I applied for, but didn’t get, a job in the equality and diversity team recently. I know the person who got the job (unfortunately someone who is very qualified and a good person, so I can’t even be annoyed at her that she got the job over me) and I’m going to have to get up the courage to talk to her about the things I wanted to look into if I’d got the job. It’s all totally reasonable stuff like “are our systems inherently racist?” (Because it seems to me that sometimes they are based on rewarding people who understand the cultural rules (which are not transparent)). But I just don’t know how to start this conversation.
    I guess I book a meeting with an agenda? And then stick to it? Right? I’m afraid that my research suggestions will be swept under the carpet, but at the same time I really felt like the people who interviewed me were up for opening those metophorical cans of worms, so I think it’s reasonable to assume that they want to be challenged, right?
    I literally did training in “giving feedback” this morning but it did nothing to help me.

  26. I’m a nanny and it can be so hard to stand up for myself because the environment never feels formal or professional, and I’m privy to awkward/embarrassing/vulnerable moments within a family in their home. I’m able to stand up for myself via text a lot more, and I’ve found a lot of power in saying a firm no to last minute date night jobs, and telling them to ask me with more notice. I’ve been in situations where parents took advantage of my time, and I’ve definitely learned to set boundaries around that.

  27. I work for the government collecting doing surveys to collect data on health, business, economic activity and social issues. It’s like a call centre but also “not a call centre” and I absolutely love my job and celebrated my first work anniversary Thursday! In the first month there I was talking to my training supervisor about something I had followed through which revealed a new way of using the computer system. They moved their hand up near their face and smiled and I said “Oh do you want me to stop talking?” They looked really stricken, ‘Um No, I was just giving you a work high five. But if someone does ask you to stop talking come and tell me because that’s really rude behaviour”
    This awkward interaction made me realise that so much of my stress about my new job was worrying about what people were thinking about me, talking and wondering if I was gay, or what I was looking like at work. I realised that whatever I imagined they would be thinking would be the worst case scenario and also so far from what they were actually thinking. Because really, do straight people ever think broadly and deeply about anything other than…well I don’t know I’m not straight.
    I thought eff it!!!! I’m joining the Pride Group. And I did. Awesome people – time off for meetings – good morning tea cakes….And the social group. And I did. It was great to meet friends and do things and no more worries about wearing masc. pants and sneakers to work! We even have Tie Tuesday now where the queer girls wear ties and vests to work if they want! And I came out. Good. Done.
    And then I got my first performance review. It was bad. Like your contract may not be renewed in three months bad. This was a complete shock because I’d had coaching and it was all good. In that performance interview where I was basically told that I wasn’t making enough calls, but the calls I made were of excellent quality. I just had to make more calls. I said, “This is terrible. I love my job I want to stay. Can you tell me exactly what I need to do to improve?” They said “Make the call total each week.” Blah Blah Blah they said. “You are overreacting, it’s okay you have only just started. Just make more calls.” I lost it. “No, I am going to improve and get my contract extended and to do that I need a plan. I want an actual improvement target for each week that I have to make. And I will need to know each week if I made it. How can I do that? And how I’m going to get there because so far you haven’t given me any negative feedback. My managers have been telling me for the last 3 months I am doing great and now you are telling me I am not. How can I get better without a plan of change?” This was actually easy in the interview because I was really upset and trying not to cry. When that happens I am just a fountain of angry words over feelings…..How embarrassing, but not really. Hey I was actually standing up for myself because I refused just sit there and cry!
    The manager was really good about it and questioned why I hadn’t been told I wasn’t doing well and it turned out that I hadn’t had all the coaching sessions I should have. My direct supervisor hadn’t been doing their job fully. So while it wasn’t strictly true I was doing badly, the stats were recorded and I could have lost my job because my managers hadn’t been doing theirs. The Bludgers! (Yes, like Harry Potter.)
    In Australia Bludging is an integral part of work and essentially the national pastime. To bludge means – to shirk responsibility and live off the efforts of others. Most everyone does it when they work for huge corporations and miserly bosses who pay badly and everyone expects that every manager does it as well. If you work hard and claim credit for your own work and get success you are generally bullied, harassed and hated. A trio of national pastimes. Doing well as a smart queer woman and surviving the success can be very, very, difficult.
    I hassled that manager every second day and in three weeks I had a plan. When I moved to another survey team and I told that manager why I needed to know my call rate every day by midday. That manager was awesome and gave me some great tips to examine what made my calls rates go down and how I was managing my multitasking ability. Next performance review? Exceeded the targets set and got a 12 month contract extension!. Eff Yes! Eff yes! Thank you Wonder woman!
    If hadn’t stood up for myself and pushed for a plan with clear goals I wouldn’t have this job. I had to make other changes too because the plan was really hard. To make those targets I had to change my focus and attitude. I needed motivation. I couldn’t listen to everyone complaining about the performance management system. I committed to doing a good job at work, organised myself to meet the crappy 35mins for lunch and bring your own tea and milk to work. (Yes seriously) , I decided to say hello and introduce myself to everyone at work regardless of who they were and seriously tried to never ever gossip or engage in whinge about work sessions on breaks. From doing all of this I got offered other opportunities, and by standing up for myself to have managers put me forward, I got selected to participate, accidentally on a ‘big government review panel,’ helping to deliver workshops in the near future and also MC-ing a ‘Wear it Purple Day’ event, sharing stories about why it’s important to support young LGBTIQA+ people in the workplace. With a microphone. To the whole office. And I improved on the next two performance reviews as well. So it’s good.

    I had never stuck up for myself at work before. I never wanted to go make waves because as a smart queer woman I was already alternative and different and already got enough crap hurled at me. I didn’t want the potential for more. I never pointed out the bludgers because I was afraid and I was shafted more often than not at work, 20 years of work in public radio, admin, hospitality and childcare. I even had a contract terminated once because I wore pants to work when the female CEO came to visit. I forgot I had to wear a dress that day. It was the 90’s it used to happen. You would think that would be a catalyst to get angry and stick up for yourself and take the patriarchy by the balls but it wasn’t. It was that poor performance review in a job I loved!

    I deliberately chose not to be that smart queer woman who slouches at the computer. There is still a chance that my contract may not be renewed when it’s up but it won’t be for my performance. If that happens I will have at least 5 extra things I can put on my CV. And 6 if you include coming out at work! I highly recommend standing up for yourself at work – it will change things for you, mostly for the better but sometimes for so much better than you iimagined

    FYI Wear it Purple Day is an Australian thing, it’s an initiative of young people. They ask work places and the community to wear purple clothes or hair on a day each year to raise awareness of the high rate of suicide of young LGBTIQA+ people in Australia. It aims to raise money through morning teas at work and gets people talking about ways they can improve their workplaces to be more LGBTIQA+ friendly and aware and how to create a safe welcoming environment for LGBTIQA+ young people starting work. They can be found at

    • I like the sound of your wear it people day. I wonder if there’s an equivalent in the UK.
      Also, well played for standing up for yourself. Lazy managers who can’t be bothered to manage are the worst

  28. There’s not much room for “asserting” myself as the lowly hireling of a contracted service for a conservative industry but plenty of room for deflecting that one office manager who wishes she was Regina George and doesn’t actually have an real qualifications for her position at all who decided my lunch break at my work station was the time to introduce herself and start her interrogations.

    Bitch was not prepared for my all girls high school graduated self.

    I kinda of enjoyed watching her frustrate herself against my shiny walls of ice as the reason I was there is because she accused the black employee who previously filled my role at that location of padding his hours, translation she basically accused him of stealing. Her ignorant racist self did not understand the tasks he was doing and the skill he displayed finishing them in those scant hours compared to my less skilled self and just about anybody else.

    Her continued interrogations hold a hint of nervous because “stuff” was piling up making her as an office manager look NOT good. But too bad so sad she scared off skilled staff being a racist dummy and it’s going to get her fired in the long run.

    ——-My Week———-

    Y’all I made spicy bread, it hurts to eat but I can’t stop eating because it’s tasty and also I’m proud of it because it’s my first boule loaf and I used two ovens at the same to make it.
    Dutch oven, big ass (literally) heavy duty pot, and regular oven. >3

    Was a recipe for spicy olive bread but not having and not being that fond of (many) olives in bread I dropped the olives and subbed one of the 2 teaspoons of red pepper flakes for classic Italian seasoning but still that remaining 1 tsp was too much sans olives.
    So next time I do this bread I’m going procure sundried tomatoes use 3/4ths a cup like the directions said for the olives. If that don’t fuck up the structure of the bread I someday make it and bring it to cookie weekend where the Sicilian side of the family has a reunion activity of making cuccidati.

    Made the 8th (I think) edition of my go at kookoo sibzamini that might be a bit closer to tortilla de papas, didn’t have feta so I used romano. It was quite good and breakfast for days, and what I needed this week. Instant low stress very tasty food first thing in my morning.

  29. Learning to stand-up for myself at my job was hard work but it really got better over the years.
    One thing I try to do: Be (on my level) the boss I’d love to have. And be the colleague I want to have, too.
    What I do, too: I try to not overthink it any longer. If an issue is important to me, I’m simply stubborn (in a nice way). My big boss is a narcissist bulldozer who’s impossible to talk, too, sometimes, and does not seem to listen. But in reality, he often does but doesn’t want to “give in” at the moment we talk. Later though, things do change. So the meetings really feel like a destructive thunderstorm and I do need to do yoga at home or run the threadmill at the gym, in the evening, for sure, but the results are usually worth it. I won’t change him, he won’t change me and in the end it’s really not that personal.
    On my level I try to be a different leader, though. I try to be someone who’s approachable, motivational and gives enough space and essentials that everybody on the team can do their best job in their ways not necessarily mine, because everyone’s different. But I had to learn that (without good training) and I still often suck at it. So I really appreciate if someone stands up for themselves because, most of the time, I’m not aware of the problem or the urgency of it. I have one colleague on my team who’s very passionate about her work and does a wonderful job but she’s clear when the acceptable limit is reached, one way or another, too, and I admire that.
    Having and actively looking for supportive colleagues helps a lot! You can often make small changes together that will go a long way.

    • this is an amazing comment and I think I’ll save it as a reminder to be the boss I want and the colleague I would want! Such simple advice but easily forgotten!

  30. Love this thread! It’s inspiring to see everyone’s varied responses. Even what seems to be a small change can make such a huge difference in power dynamics in a professional work setting.
    I work in a small company metal shop, which can tend to be a very traditionally male working environment. I started as a metal worker but after a few years I got the heads up that the foreman was leaving in half a year. My bosses were seriously considering bringing in a completely new hire for the position, but I decided that I wanted to throw my hat in for the position as well. I thought I was a good candidate and had a few ideas for how work flow and efficiency could be improved. My bosses were surprised by my applying for the position, but after my pitch decided that I would be a good fit for the position!
    I struggled a bit in the beginning. Not everyone in the shop was thrilled with my appointment, and I had to deal with quiet a bit of push back, especially from a homophobic girl who was hired a few weeks before me. Thankfully, after a few months of her trying to undermine me (showing up 4 hours late when she was supposed to be training new hires, spending more time on her phone than actually working, making homophobic jokes, physically assaulting me after I asked her to literally do her job), she finally threw in the towel and quit after she realized I wasn’t going anywhere and that I would never sink to her level.
    I still feel I have to work harder to earn my coworker’s respect than my predecessor did, but I’m proud of myself for putting myself out there and having the ambition to get the position of foreman. It’s a little kitschy or simplistic, but the mindset of “do no harm, take no shit” has been indispensably useful. Being consistent, gentle (not kind) but unyielding to bullshit, and level-headed has done me well and has benefited my company. All of my coworkers are male but I have four queer comrades and one female boss who have my back.

  31. I spent the last couple months trying to stand up for myself at work vs. a team of newly hired straight white men, and nothing changed and I’m so demoralized that I don’t know what to do with myself. I don’t even have the drive to look for another job because I just hate tech so much at this point.

    Also during this process I realized that I’ve worked with one woman in the past 10 years. ONE WOMAN. And that was 5 years ago.

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