So then...

About Me

Welcome to my blog. My pen name is Eva James. I'm an aspiring writer paying the bills working as a legal secretary. Relentlessly bullied by my former boss, I looked for another job but the recession hit. Feeling trapped, I recorded everything in this blog, which serves as a revealing insight into workplace bullying. WEEK 1 starts the story and, as the weeks progress, you'll note what starts as banter soon spirals out of control. Sadly, it's all true. Whilst along the way I've found alternative employment, my passion for blogging about workplace bullying remains. Trevor Griffiths, legendary theatre, TV and film writer said at the outset, "I like the writing a lot: smart, cool, placed. If you were prepared/able to take your prick of a boss on, you'd marmelise him."

Thursday, 31 December 2009

Absent Friends

It’s the last day of 2009 and who can help looking back? It’s been a tough year and I can’t believe in a few days I’ll go back to the law firm I planned to leave a year ago. Back then, PHILIP was sacking two secretaries a month. His tempers still intimidate. We lost about two support staff a month to walk outs. Temps came, cried and left. We were always short staffed and someone was always in tears. I tried to find another job and I stopped bothering to ask people’s names.

When HOWARD’S original secretary joined us, she was different. Her sense of humour killed me. When she invited me round for tea, I accepted. She let me borrow her DVDs. I met her boyfriend. Before I knew it, I’d made a real friend. Work felt like different place, and when HOWARD got too much – she stuck up for me. The trouble was, of course, she was disgusted at the way secretaries are treated.

I tried to get her to stay calm, but within six months they’d got to her. They messed her about after she’d been ill, trying to claw back her sick pay. Things got nasty. By the time she walked out I no longer recognised her from the funny, confident girl she’d been when she started.

I should have done this sooner. I’ve sat there for eight hours a day and been too scared of not finding a secure alternative job in the recession. All those times when I wanted to yell at PHILIP to stop swearing; when I wanted to tell OLLIE to go to hell, when HOWARD was going too far - I said nothing.

My friends are long gone. Their names remain in the computer directory to remind me; colleagues who were sacked or left through stress. I’ve been left behind. So here we are. It’s almost midnight. The fireworks will go off and they’ll be singing in the streets.:-

For old lang syne, my dear,
For old lang syne,
We'll take a cup o' kindness yet,
For the sake of old lang syne

To my absent friends. My New Years Resolution is to join you.
Happy New Year. Lots of love, Eva x

1 comment:

Johanna said...

And..a very happy new year..because it meant moving on with courage...wistful at not standing up to them maybe..but what alternative was there when you support yourself..its a desperate feeling standing on a tightrope without a safety net...
I think professional jealousy was an issue cos he knew you were brighter than him ..he probably even envied you your heart..something that did not beat inside of him...I hope That secretary found a brighter future too..

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