When it comes to family, and friends, I am so overprotective that at times, It's ridiculous!
Lucy gives me a heart attack on a regular basis. Just being a kid, Climbing, Riding Bikes, and all other kid-like activities have my heart in my throat. I think I am so afraid of losing her, of her suddenly not being a part of my life that I fear stupid, inconsequential activities will harm her far more than they ever could, or would.
I try not to let her see this. I let her climb, ride bikes and play. I try and follow the three D's before I intervene - if what she is doing is not Dangerous, Destructive or Disturbing (Thanks BFM!), then I try not to get involved. The fact that almost every activity that has her feet of the ground disturbs me, is not reason enough to stop her from doing it. She is a child, and children need to be free to make their own mistakes (within reason, and reasonable guidelines!), and to learn, through play. You can't learn to ride a bike if you're never allowed too!
And then we come to my husband. I can't stand injustice against him. He has been completely miserable in his job. We've been trying to get him out of there, and he's been looking for work in other places since early this year, but as yet nothing that works for us as a family, and financially has been offered. Most has been a substantial pay cut, and while we can deal with a small loss in income if it means he is happy in his job, we can't afford to lose a third, which is what some are offering. It's times like these I hate the economy.
He cops a lot of bullshit from his boss. A lot of it is misdirected stupidity, on the bosses part. A small part of it may be justified, if he makes a mistake, or lets something slide that he shouldn't. But I know Matt, and he is pretty good at accepting responsibility for his actions. He doesn't look for excuses, he says "oh shit, I screwed that up, I'm sorry". It's a great trait to have, one that isn't seen that often, and one that I really struggled to learn when I first started working. But it is a very positive ability to have, and one that has served me well. I know he does this, because he does it at home. He doesn't lie, or try and cover his tracks. He doesn't try and blame other people. He acts with integrity, He lives, with integrity.
So when his boss had a mini flip out this week, and piled all this crap on him, I lost the plot. And not in a little way. It all actually came to a head last week, when despite all the extra stuff Matt does, his boss accused him of not pulling his weight, and of slacking off, and always being late to work. I was livid.
And then on Tuesday, it hit the proverbial fan again. I was at work when Matt rang me to say he'd been summoned to a disciplinary hearing, to be held on Wednesday regarding some of his work. I was so angry, when he explained to me that not only had the boss not asked him why the problems had occurred, but that when Matt tried to explain to him, he threw his hands up in the air, and walked away mid conversation. We don't tolerate that behaviour from Lucy, and she's not quite three!
Matt investigated the situations, and after looking at the facts and figures, it turns out he isn't actually able to be held accountable for any one of the incidents they intended to discipline him over. They threw six scenarios at him, and not a single. one, as far as we can see, was his fault! If it were, he'd take the hearing and move on. It is so clearly a witch hunt, which is why we moved onto the next logical step.
I pushed him to involve HR. He contacted them and requested a rep come up, and make themselves available for this meeting. The HR rep advised that he was "unable to attend" and so Matt had to involve a different line manager. He also said he would be taking a witness into the meeting. (Mel to the rescue, again!).
My anger levels went through the roof when Matt told me his boss was insisting the meeting go ahead, regardless. And so then, we wrote the letter of complaint.
"The" letter, is four pages long. It details every complaint Matt has had with his boss in the past year, since his last written complaint against him, and brings up some very unprofessional behaviours and attitudes. Amazingly enough, HR has now become available to visit the office, and an investigation has been launched. Matt may get rapped over the knuckles by HR, if they find him lacking or not measuring up in anyway, which we are ready for. Matt doesn't care! He just wants people to finally recognise what he tolerates, and puts up with from someone who is meant to be in a senior management roll. The same person, who after ten years in the fuel industry didn't know there was an additive in petrol!
I get so angry when he comes home and tells me what he's been dealing with. He's not one to complain, he never has been, so when it gets to a point that I can say "call HR", and he goes "yeah, I think it's time", things are bad.
We're so lucky to live in a country where he can't be discriminated against for standing up for himself. I don't even work at this place, and I can't stand it. I hate how miserable he is there, I hate that he hates going to work, and that he still has to go there, even though he can't stand the thought of it. I feel so helpless, all I can do is offer suggestions, and help him sort out his head at the end of every day. I'm so glad Mel is there, for him to yell at, especially since I'm working again now and can't always answer the phone when he calls to decompress.
I have no idea how to wrap this post up. I guess the point I was trying to make before I got crazily distracted, and rambled on, was that I am so protective of people close to me. Sometimes, I don't know how to put that into action. Believe it or not, I actually hate confrontation, I usually cry, and it gets messy, but I see the need for it when the occasion arises. In the meantime, I just do what I can to help, and support - and keep the three D's mantra on repeat in my brain.