Author Topic: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact  (Read 8893 times)

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TootsNYC

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s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« on: May 04, 2013, 04:55:28 PM »
The "I wasn't invited and I'm OK with that" thread reminded me of a story.

Years ago, I had a boss who pretty much didn't like me. It never affected how she seemed to feel about my work, or interfere with communication about work.

But it became clear she didn't like me. Any of the slightly social stuff at work, she cut me out of. For example, I'd be in the workroom of one of the subdepartments on our team, and we'd be talking socially. She'd come in, and she'd speak to everyone else in the room but never directly to me. She'd *look* at everyone else in the room, but never at me.

Ditto if I stopped by her office to drop something off--several people would be in there chatting, and they'd speak to me but she wouldn't. And she wouldn't look at me or answer any comment I made.

I don't know if anyone else ever noticed it. Nobody ever commented on it. At first it bothered me, and then it just got mostly amusing. And as I said, it never interfered with work or our work relationship. I always felt I could go ask her anything I need to about work. And I felt that if someone had asked me if I was good at my job, or if I was nice, she'd have said yes. She just didn't, herself, like me.

At Christmas time at the department party, someone said something about the socks she'd given to several people (none of whom reported to her; they were all in a subdepartment) as a Christmas present; and I'd walked into my coworker's office (who also reported directly to her) just as she was opening a really *nice* Christmas present from our boss. But I hadn't received anything. And on the last day before break, she brought by a tiny Christmas candle and said, "Merry Christmas." It felt like *such* an afterthought, and like a total regift (though I don't know, actually). So, it was really clear.

In the middle of this period, I was chatting with someone from one of those subdepartments, and she mentioned something about MyBoss's new kitchen.

"Oh, did she get her kitchen redone?" I asked. "Did you stop by to see it?" (They lived in the same borough of NYC, and same neighborhood.)

"We all did, remember?" my colleague said. "She had us all over a couple of months ago."

"Oh," I said. "I wasn't there, I didn't see it."

Why not? she asks.
I said. "I wasn't invited."
Surely I had been! she said.

"No," I said.

"Oh!" she said. "I'm sorry."

No one had ever mentioned it in the office at all, which seemed exceptionally discreet of everyone, given how things were at work. I'm really, really surprised someone didn't say, "see you tonight!" or "how late are you staying/how are you getting home?"

I tried not to say that I hadn't even been invited, but it ened up being the fastest way to end the awkward conversation. And I bit my tongue so I wouldn't say, "She doesn't like me personally, she'd never invite me to her HOME."

It made me really careful about talking about social/work things.

rose red

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2013, 06:12:19 PM »
At one of my first "real" jobs, a person one step above my level made bracelets for my coworkers for Christmas, but none for me.  It hurt, but I wouldn't want a keepsake from such a person anyway.  The worse part was my coworkers kept asking what color my bracelet was, forcing me to say I didn't get a gift from that person.  Dealing with the coworkers innocent questions was worse than being snubbed. Not fair for my coworkers either since they, of course, felt awkward afterwards too.

gellchom

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2013, 06:23:55 PM »
It reminded me of a story, too -- but mine is a happy one.

Years ago, my mother was getting her hair done to go to a 30th anniversary party for my cousins Romeo and Juliet.  At the salon, she ran into Ophelia, who she knew was Juliet's best friend.  She said, "Well, I'll see you tonight," or something, and was met with a puzzled "Huh?" or something from Ophelia.  "Oh, aren't you able to go to Romeo and Juliet's party?"  But Ophelia didn't know anything about the party.

Mom felt horrible.  She knows not to discuss a party with people who aren't invited, but there was no way Ophelia wouldn't have been invited.  She couldn't figure it out.

She did later.  The party wasn't an anniversary party for Romeo and Juliet at all -- it was a surprise 70th birthday party for HER.  The invitation she received to an anniversary party was just to get her to the venue all dressed up on the appointed evening.

It took her most of the evening for it to totally register.  When we all yelled "Surprise!" when she entered, she thought the surprise was just that her kids and grandkids had come from out of town to the anniversary party because it was close to her big birthday (and she wasn't pleased that we'd tried to usurp the anniversary party).  It was well over an hour into the party, when she noticed that all of HER friends were there, but none of Romeo and Juliet's, that she realized that it was ALL for her.

And then she remembered her conversation with Ophelia.   She hastened to tell Juliet, "I think I got you into trouble!  You have to call your friend Ophelia first thing tomorrow ...."

TootsNYC

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2013, 06:45:11 PM »
At one of my first "real" jobs, a person one step above my level made bracelets for my coworkers for Christmas, but none for me.  It hurt, but I wouldn't want a keepsake from such a person anyway.  The worse part was my coworkers kept asking what color my bracelet was, forcing me to say I didn't get a gift from that person.  Dealing with the coworkers innocent questions was worse than being snubbed. Not fair for my coworkers either since they, of course, felt awkward afterwards too.

That's true! It's why rudeness is rude to other people and not just the target.

Bijou

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2013, 11:26:31 PM »
I hear you guys!  I used to go to lunch every day with a group of about 10 people at work.  They had all been sent to another office to work for a couple of weeks and apparently, during that time, bonded very seriously.  (It was volunteer and I hadn't because I couldn't do it as it required staying away from home for extended periods).  When this period of time ended and things were back to normal I noticed that we didn't go to lunch any more.  Then one day I ran out to get take out lunch from a very small Mexican restaurant and when I walked in found that the whole group was there celebrating one their birthdays.  I had not been invited.  I was so bewildered.  They looked very uncomfortable, but I just said hi, got my lunch and left.  Months later one of them, who had been a good friend of mine and a karaoke buddy, told me that she was so embarrassed and felt so bad about it that day.  (Uh-huh.)  I could never get past being dumped for no reason I could fathom. 
« Last Edit: May 04, 2013, 11:29:21 PM by Bijou »
I've never knitted anything I could recognize when it was finished.  Actually, I've never finished anything, much to my family's relief.

Raintree

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2013, 11:54:29 PM »
I think the OP's boss treated her horribly.

It's fine to make work friends, and be friendly with certain people outside of work; also to dislike some people you work with (as long as you remain cordial and don't let it affect your actual work) but this boss created rather an uncomfortable work environment, IMO. You don't invite the entire gang from the office except one person, ESPECIALLY  if you are the boss, and you don't give Christmas gifts to your subordinates at work unless you are giving something similar to everyone. Rude and inappropriate for a work environment, IMO.

Bijou's coworkers also treated her horribly. I'd understand if it was a group of 5 people out of an office of, say, 14 who decided they were particularly good friends with each other. But you don't form a group of 10 out of 11 people and exclude the 11th. MAYBE if you do it outside work hours. But to pull this stuff at work is really off.

Otterpop

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2013, 02:10:55 AM »
I think the OP's boss treated her horribly.

It's fine to make work friends, and be friendly with certain people outside of work; also to dislike some people you work with (as long as you remain cordial and don't let it affect your actual work) but this boss created rather an uncomfortable work environment, IMO. You don't invite the entire gang from the office except one person, ESPECIALLY  if you are the boss, and you don't give Christmas gifts to your subordinates at work unless you are giving something similar to everyone. Rude and inappropriate for a work environment, IMO.

Bijou's coworkers also treated her horribly. I'd understand if it was a group of 5 people out of an office of, say, 14 who decided they were particularly good friends with each other. But you don't form a group of 10 out of 11 people and exclude the 11th. MAYBE if you do it outside work hours. But to pull this stuff at work is really off.

I agree.  This is "mean girl" behavior.  Everyone grows older but some never mature.  Be glad such a person doesn't want to get close to you.  (Also, sometimes it's because you're awesome in some way and they feel insecure about it).
« Last Edit: May 05, 2013, 02:12:27 AM by Otterpop »

LifeOnPluto

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2013, 03:31:35 AM »
I think it's not rude at all to say "I wasn't invited", when asked why you weren't at so-and-so's party.

Yes, the person asking might feel awkward. But it's not your fault. It's the fault of the Host who excluded you. And frankly, if I was one of the "innocent askers", I would want to know the truth (that the excluded person wasn't invited), because then I could get a better handle on the group dynamics. And I certainly wouldn't think less of the person who hadn't been invited (although I might think less of the Host for excluding them).

iridaceae

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2013, 08:23:55 AM »
I had a boss who detested me. She kept trying to do things to me and the others she hated...and kept getting thwarted by the other managers who liked us and detested her. It was kind of amusing after a while. She found out the hard way after the store closed that all these people she thought were friends and was always trying to invite over really did dislike her.

juliasqueezer

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2013, 10:51:23 AM »
I also had a boss once who didn't like me. I think because I knew too many of his secrets. Through a series of re-shufflings and reorganizations at my place of employment, he and I ended up in a new department, in a new location, with him as my new boss. We had always gotten along well, not buddies, but never a problem. I had ignored or not acknowledged some of his more unsavory behaviors, such as leaving at noon with his secretary. Both of them were married to other people.

So now he's my new boss. He is divorcing his wife, his old secretary is divorcing her husband. People in the new department may know the background or not. I had no idea (still don't). I say nothing to nobody. Not my business.
 
Suddenly, new boss is having parties and cookouts at his house (old wife has moved out, apparently) and all of my coworkers are invited. I'm not. My coworkers try not to discuss these get-togethers in front of me and apologize for him. It hurt to be so obviously shut out, but I tried to keep a happy, cheerful face and be as professional as possible. His coup de grace was to bring in photos he took at the parties and leave them prominently displayed on his desk. When I ignored the photos while talking about work in his office, he put them on our department bulletin board. I still don't know for sure what caused his sudden hatred of me.

I was very happy to be promoted out of that area within a year.

He retired and moved to a warmer climate with his wife (yes, the old secretary). Last year, he sent me a facebook friend request.

I ignored it.

siamesecat2965

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2013, 02:12:23 PM »
I also had a boss once who didn't like me. I think because I knew too many of his secrets. Through a series of re-shufflings and reorganizations at my place of employment, he and I ended up in a new department, in a new location, with him as my new boss. We had always gotten along well, not buddies, but never a problem. I had ignored or not acknowledged some of his more unsavory behaviors, such as leaving at noon with his secretary. Both of them were married to other people.

So now he's my new boss. He is divorcing his wife, his old secretary is divorcing her husband. People in the new department may know the background or not. I had no idea (still don't). I say nothing to nobody. Not my business.
 
Suddenly, new boss is having parties and cookouts at his house (old wife has moved out, apparently) and all of my coworkers are invited. I'm not. My coworkers try not to discuss these get-togethers in front of me and apologize for him. It hurt to be so obviously shut out, but I tried to keep a happy, cheerful face and be as professional as possible. His coup de grace was to bring in photos he took at the parties and leave them prominently displayed on his desk. When I ignored the photos while talking about work in his office, he put them on our department bulletin board. I still don't know for sure what caused his sudden hatred of me.

I was very happy to be promoted out of that area within a year.

He retired and moved to a warmer climate with his wife (yes, the old secretary). Last year, he sent me a facebook friend request.

I ignored it.

wow. that was really childish of him! sort of "look at me, look at me, don't you WANT to know all about the stuff we do outside the office without you?" Good for you for not taking the bait. He probably made himself look stupid by continually excluding you, unless your co-workers didn't like you either, which I doubt.

juliasqueezer

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2013, 08:35:38 PM »
I'm still in touch with several of the old crew (I'm retired now) and we still laugh at his lame attempts to pull these power trips. We all were subjected to his toolish behaviors at one time or another.

HGolightly

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2013, 09:25:47 PM »
My Job From Hell started well and I was promoted however a new more senior member of staff took an instant dislike to me and my two coworkers. One left for a better job and was replaced by a total suck up who was, like my antagonist into Random Deity like the boss. Despite being told that it was an anti clique office the three Deity Divas became besties and did everything they could to drive me crazy or out. The Suckup had less and less duties to do and I had more and more to do.  I left and found myself in a awesome job 6 months later! The Suckup was fired less than 6 months later and my antagonist had a HUGE falling out with the boss.

gellchom

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2013, 10:35:19 PM »
I think it's not rude at all to say "I wasn't invited", when asked why you weren't at so-and-so's party.

Yes, the person asking might feel awkward. But it's not your fault. It's the fault of the Host who excluded you. And frankly, if I was one of the "innocent askers", I would want to know the truth (that the excluded person wasn't invited), because then I could get a better handle on the group dynamics. And I certainly wouldn't think less of the person who hadn't been invited (although I might think less of the Host for excluding them).

Re: the bolded portion -

Even if it's someone else's fault, I still don't want to make the innocent asker feel bad.  Good manners means acting graciously and kindly to others, especially those who have done nothing wrong; we don't get a free pass just because we can blame someone else.

Otterpop

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Re: s/o: "wasn't invited" -- after-the-fact
« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2013, 10:56:03 PM »
I think it's not rude at all to say "I wasn't invited", when asked why you weren't at so-and-so's party.

Yes, the person asking might feel awkward. But it's not your fault. It's the fault of the Host who excluded you. And frankly, if I was one of the "innocent askers", I would want to know the truth (that the excluded person wasn't invited), because then I could get a better handle on the group dynamics. And I certainly wouldn't think less of the person who hadn't been invited (although I might think less of the Host for excluding them).

Re: the bolded portion -

Even if it's someone else's fault, I still don't want to make the innocent asker feel bad.  Good manners means acting graciously and kindly to others, especially those who have done nothing wrong; we don't get a free pass just because we can blame someone else.

It's not blaming another person, it's telling the truth.  She didn't go because she wasn't invited.  Saying something like "I couldn't make it" would be a LIE.  Obfuscating or lying is bad manners and muddles a straightforward situation.  Plus, if she has to make excuses over and over again, she'd make herself look bad.