So lately these seemingly random outbursts of anger have been directed towards me. Though I will only touch on the first two in this post because the last one deserves a post all it’s own. The first two are from the same person so I just figured it to be his own quirk, but this last one has me questioning that.
I am the first to admit I can be annoyingly stubborn and outspoken in certain instances, but for the most part I try not to step on anyone’s toes or make assumptions about intent. I give everyone the benefit of a doubt and generally refuse to speak to anyone in anger. If I am angry I will wait till I have calmed down and can speak to the subject of sad anger in a reasonable manner. The gist is that, if I feel something you said is wrong I will only address it in the most non-aggressive way possible.
This guy I work with was commenting on the beeping sound my computer was making, saying it would set off a fellow co-worker (who wasn’t present at the time). He said that co-worker had had ‘flipped out’ when the air cut on the first day of work. Side note: when the air cut on the first day most of us jumped and looked scared, it’s very loud sounding as if somethings fallen on the building and it shakes the ceiling. In any case the guy I was talking to said he calls our co-worker PTSD, I asked him why. He said because the co-worker suffers from it (I found out this co-worker is currently in service and will leave in a few months on a mission). I said I didn’t really like the nickname because my uncle suffers from it and I wouldn’t want anyone to call him that. I said this in a bit of a throw away tone, not expecting the guy to change his ways but hoping he might reconsider the nickname. He got so upset with me and started arguing, gaining the attention of our fellow employees (lucky our supervisor wasn’t around). People began to ask what was going on. I calmly explained that the guy said he calls our fellow co-worker PTSD, I told him I found it offensive, he disagreed with it being offensive.
That’s it, that was all I said. He seemed a bit confused as if he expecting me to say something insulting about him, but I was never upset with him. The argument was basically one sided with him feeling I had no right to be offended and me saying he couldn’t change how I felt, which is the truth.
This happened a few days ago. I was eating lunch with some female co-workers when the guy from the first incident joined us. I don’t even remember what we talked about, until he began to gossip about two fellow employees who had had a falling out the first week of work. He was passing on a comment another co-worker had made about the two co-workers who though currently at odds, are trying to be civil since they work side by side. I said he shouldn’t stir things up, he snapped at me and said “I’m a grown man I’ll say what I want to say”. Then he followed up with “We’re not going to go through this again.” I responded “Go through what again?” He just kept repeating “No, we’re not going through this again.” So I repeated my question “Go through what again? How can we go through something again if we never went through it a first time?” He continued saying “We’re not going through this again.” He was getting louder so I got quiet to prevent another argument. Since I had finished eating, I calmly gathered my things, smiled at everyone and said I’d see them back in our training room. With that I left, but I thought I heard him call me a bully. Maybe I misheard though. Side note: We’re all currently training together so it has a bit of a feel of being back in high school. I feel just as out of place as I did back then but way more grounded and gentler.
I also realize you don’t have to win an argument by having the last word. Later in training I behaved the same towards him and everyone else: friendly. At first I felt like maybe I should just stick to myself, talk to no one and help no one, but that’s not me. And that would be a decision based on fear, I refuse to make anyone decisions based on fear.
As I helped people in my usually way, I could feel him watching me and after a while he began to act friendly towards me, not really sure why.
But for me, he could have kept calling our co-worker PTSD if he wanted to, I just said it bothered me because he said it like it was supposed to be funny. I wasn’t going to laugh and felt he should know why. I truly said it like someone would say I’m lactose intolerant when offered ice cream. It was the same when I said not to stir things up, I was smiling when I said it. In both cases his strong reaction surprised me.
So what do you think?
Should I not have said anything?
It’s not like he was calling me or my uncle PTSD. I suppose I could have left it to the co-worker being called that to address the issue (if he had a problem with it).
Do you understand why he got mad at me?
I really want to understand it better. If you agree with him, tell me why. I’m fine with people disagreeing with me.