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Warning, very long post here! Trying to wrap my head around it all

L

ljohnson6032

New member
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
4
Location
Collingswood, NJ
Two days ago I was unexpectedly fired from my job of six months that I loved and had received excellent employee reviews for. This is the fourth job that I was terminated from in the last 21 months ever since my son was born. All four employers pretty much terminated me for pretty much the same false allegations: that I was stealing money, received several complaints from coworkers pertaining to unprofessional behavior, and that I fail to follow instructions from superiors. Prior to two years ago I NEVER had so much as a single verbal or written warning from an employer. What confuses me the most is that each time I’ve been sacked, I’m completely blindsided because I had received nothing but positive feedback. Then out of nowhere I’m pulled into HR with a laundry list of supposed errors, policy violations, formal statements of complaints, and “proof” (that they refuse to show or even explain to me). Each time I asked why no one had bothered to confront me with any of these issues when they happened because they were more than likely misunderstandings. Every time I’m given the response “you should have figured it out yourself” or “you just refuse to take accountability for your poor choices”.

It started with my (now ex) husband three months into our marriage while I was 26 weeks pregnant with our son. After spending four wonderful years together (engaged for two), we constantly told one another how grateful we were to have a happy new marriage after four years of a healthy, trusting, stable relationship prior. Labor Day 2016 was the last day I was able to enjoy the newlywed bliss, as I had spent an amazing evening with him cooking dinner together, binging Criminal Minds, and having amazing sex. Before we fell asleep he thanked me for making all of his dreams come true, and that he was the happiest he had ever been in his entire life knowing that our love had created our son. We were so excited about all of the things we planned to do as a family in the next few years.

The next day he came home from work and told me that he’d been lying and putting on the act that he was happy, and confessed to me that ever since we returned from our honeymoon he had been miserable because I “only cared about my pregnancy” and that I wasn’t showing him enough attention. Considering I spent almost every one of those days dealing with extreme nausea and unmanageable heartburn, I told him that I would make a stronger effort to show him how much I loved him. His response was “it’s too late for that, you should have realized how much you were neglecting me”, then brought up the one or two really bad fights we’d had over two years ago as additional reasons for justifying his decision to leave me. Somehow his personality did a complete 360 that day, and the sweet, loving, understanding man I fell in love with turned into an emotionally abusive monster literally overnight.

He made me sleep on the living room futon for a week after that, until he told me that his parents were coming over to move his things back into their house. Up until this point I was hoping that he was going to snap out of his crappy behavior or give an explanation as to why I had become his emotional punching bag. I came home from work later that day, and they had taken all of the furniture, our bed, everything I had bought for the nursery, every kitchen item, the refrigerator was completely empty, and he had also withdrawn our entire savings account and every last penny in our joint savings. I had no choice but to go to my parents house with the few articles of clothing and toiletries they left behind. Three months went by, he refused to attend more than one marriage counseling session with me, and the whole time he only talked about other women he was pursuing because “he deserved to be happy”. He called me drunk a few times before our son was born accusing me of “getting pregnant on purpose to trap him” using it to justify cleaning out our bank accounts and taking everything from the apartment. His mother sent me an email stating that she was filing a restraining order against me in case i decided to drag my pregnant ass over to their house to get my stuff back.

I was admitted into the hospital two weeks before our son’s due date because of pregnancy complications I developed in my last trimester. I let him know when they started the induction process, and he showed up to the hospital with flowers and stayed with me through the 48 hours of the pitocin drip. While I was in active labor he kept texting someone, but stopped when I had asked him to. After delivering our son I lost over 900 cc’s of blood and completely lost consciousness for the first five hours that my son had been in the world, and it happened before I was even able to see him. When I woke up, my ex was crying and immediately apologized for everything that he put me through the last few months. He was lying in bed next to me, holding me with one arm and the other to help me breastfeed our son since I had 10 IV lines in each of my arms. We spent the next few hours talking through our issues, and he kept bursting into tears and telling me how scary it was for him to watch me almost bleed to death, and the fact I had lived through that was a message from God that he needed to step up and be a good husband and father. The next morning he told me that his brother was going to help him move our belongings back into our apartment (that we still had another 6 months of our lease on) for when he brought the baby and I home. I was so happy that he was finally on board with working things out, we kissed before he left, told me he loved me and that he would be back later that afternoon.

Evening rolled around and I hadn’t received a text from him for several hours after sending me a video showing me how he had rearranged our furniture differently than from before to give us the concept of a fresh start as a family of three. I called him that night and his phone went straight to voicemail, but I figured that he had fallen asleep after being awake for the last 72 hours. When I woke up the next morning he was sitting in a chair across the room from me, and told me that his lawyer was in the process of filing our divorce papers. I was confused and extremely emotional given my postpartum horomones and our reconciliation two days before that. I was in the middle of my third blood transfusion when the gaslighting started, he denied ever expressing any remorse “having already moved on with his life months ago” and that is getting back together was my “delusional way of dealing” with the fact that he was moving back into our apartment with our things to live with his new girlfriend. I showed him the video he sent me of the apartment the day before, and he instantly accused me of hacking into his girlfriend’s iPhone and stealing the video due to my “lack of mental stability”. I knew I wasn’t crazy, and even had a nurse who interjected and told him she had witnessed him kissing me, and telling me how much he loved me and wanted to be a family. After he started yelling at me for “manipulating the nurse into my sick agenda” I had him escorted out of the hospital by security. My mother came and spent my last night with me for my fifth blood transfusion. My son and I were already signed off to be discharged the following morning. At 5 am that morning I was woken up by a court processor and served with (not only divorce papers) an Emergency Sole custody motion and a restraining order request to the courts for me to stay 60 feet away from him and our son at all times, with the exception of one supervised hour of visitation each month in a neutral location. His lawyer had tried to enter several screenshots of text messages that had obviously been sent from another phone and saved as my name as a contact.

Since my son was born on December 22nd, I wasn’t able to get through to a lawyer until the first week of January. Luckily the judge denied their “emergency” custody hearing since I wasn’t able to attend due to the fact that my son and I were being discharged at the time the case was heard. Immediately after the emergency motion was denied, his lawyer filed for sole custody with the family court. Both of our attorneys spent the next three months in litigation because he refused to agree to any custody schedule that didn’t award him sole custody. Not once did he text or call to see how his son was doing, and because of the situation that he had created our lawyers advised us not to have contact with one another until a custody order was determined by the courts.

Due to all of the legal fees I was forced to go back to work after a month, but my employer told me that while I was on maternity leave, one of my clients (autistic) had charged over $1000 to the agency’s online account after figuring out my email account password was automatically stored on the house’s network. She informed me that she had no choice but to terminate me because it was my responsibility to make sure that my company user names and passwords were too secure. Luckily I was able to find another job very quickly . I started the week before the next custody hearing where I ended up being granted primary custody (he was only given every other Saturday overnight and three hours of visitation every Wednesday evening). The judge also ruled that I was to have visitation with our dog whenever he had visitation with our son. We were also required to attend an 8 hour co-parenting workshop the following Monday in addition to our child support hearing on Friday of that same week in which I was forced to miss three days of work within my first two weeks. My new boss was understanding up until he filed an appeal against the judge’s decision forcing me to miss a fourth day of work for another hearing. The second judge extended his Saturday overnights to every other Friday afternoon to Monday morning and also granted him overnights every single Wednesday night. Even though she upheld my visitations with our dog while our son was at his father’s, she gave him permission to give our son formula during his visits and I stopped lactating after a week of the new visitation schedule. At this point, I was under the impression that my boss wasn’t happy about my situation, but since I provided her with all of the legal papers she reassured me that my job wasn’t in jeopardy and understood why I needed to miss so many days.

A month later he filed for custody a fourth time asking for equal 50/50 custody. Because I was forced to move in with my parents over an hour away from where our apartment was (across state lines) and since he had moved his girlfriend in there anyway, I stayed with my parents who were helping me financially and emotionally as I was a single mother to a newborn with over $30,000 in debt with the law firm. His lawyer attempted to argue that I had “kidnapped” our son by moving to another jurisdiction while I was still pregnant, and that he should be awarded 50/50 custody for how “unfairly” I had treated the father of my child by not agreeing to give him sole custody in the first place. The judge ended up yelling at him for not respecting the order she enforced the month before. Nevertheless she knocked off half of the monthly child support that the other judge determined six weeks before that.

I went into work the following morning to my boss pulling me aside and informing me that my absence the day before forced the classroom (students on the autism spectrum) to be short staffed, and the student I supported was so upset that he smashed one of the school’s iPads and completely destroyed it. She gave me an ultimatum of either paying $1250 in full before the end of the day to have it replaced or that she wouldn’t be able to renew my teaching contract for the upcoming quarter. In order to keep my dignity I ended up just walking out right then and there and went straight to my lawyer to file charges against them for trying to blackmail me. Unfortunately, their decision as to whether or not to renew the contracts of their employees fell under “at will employment” laws, nor did I have any proof of or witnesses to the conversation with my boss, so I only had $100 income at this point from child support and I was denied unemployment due to my absences for court.

Luckily I was able to find another job within a few weeks that was overnight in case he filed for custody for the fifth time. As standard with new jobs, I had a 90 day probationary period where I couldn’t have any absences. I was also required to work overtime into the next shift when a first shifter ran late or called out due to their seniority rule when it came to relieving staff at the end of their shift. This was also a job where I worked with the special needs population with severe behavioral issues, and first shift staff were always calling out so I was forced to work 18 hour shifts every, 6 days a week my first two months. I was able to pay off my laywer quickly, but my immune system eventually caught up with me. On my last shift of my 90 day probation I was suddenly hit with the stomach flu and vomited all over myself because I couldn’t make it to the bathroom (or anything else to throw up in) and the overnight lead staff let me go home at 7 am and worked first shift for me the following morning. A few hours later I received an angry text message from the program director accusing me of purposely throwing up on myself then taking advantage of my shift lead’s “kindness”. After my failed attempts to convince her that it wasn’t deliberate, she informed me that she was extending my probation an additional 60 days.

Not too long afterwards, a veteran overnight staff member from the unit upstairs was promoted to Third Shift Program Operations Manager, a position they created specifically for him after his ten year anniversary with the company. While making rounds on his first shift with the title, he demanded to speak with me privately in the conference room (which didn’t have cameras) where he began yelling at me because the sweater I was wearing was too tight and that it was my responsibility to “relieve him” of the tension that I caused. At this point I was so fed up with dealing with shitty people and their BS games, I snapped and called him a disgusting misogynist pig and told him to go back to his office upstairs and take care of the matter himself. I was forced to work there another two months while applications I submitted to other jobs kept getting rejected. This man made my life a living hell and spent all of his time and energy bulling me the entire shift. I had started wearing loose fitting clothes after the encounter and he wrote me up for “unprofessional baggy attire” and started requiring me to ask him permission to use the bathroom. Considering this was an overnight data recording support position, he considered me spending a few minutes in the bathroom (while the clients were all asleep) to be in violation of state “levels of support” laws. One night he started calling me the “c” and “w” words, so I recorded it for evidence and emailed it to HR the next morning. Less than 48 hours later the program director called me a few hours before my shift and told me that I had violated HIPPA laws by having my phone inside of the unit (even though all of the clients were all asleep in their bedrooms and overnight staff were REQUIRED to record data on our personal smartphones). She also accused me of “stealing company time” because I clocked in literally one minute before 11pm. She didn’t even give me the respect of firing me to my face.

Despite the evidence I had, i still couldn’t find a lawyer willing to go up against them. Once again, because of “at will employment laws”, they would have a stronger argument that I was manipulating my manager into saying those things by refusing to follow the rules he enforced. Luckily their appeals against my unemployment claim were all denied, and four months later I landed a job at local Insurance Company that not only paid excellent, but had also won the top “best place to work” status in the Philadelphia area five years in a row. A friend from high school was able to get me hired after telling her about my nightmare work experiences with my past few jobs. Since she had worked there for almost a decade, I believed her when she told me that they only terminate their employees in extreme circumstances after giving them many chances to redeem themselves.

I completely fell in love with the job and the culture of the company. After being abused and mistreated by employers for far too long, it was amazing to have superiors and coworkers who treated me with courtesy and respect. I loved the comrade with my team members, my supervisor was very down to earth and understanding when my ex filed for full custody again within my first month of employment and even let me flex my hours so that I didn’t have to take an unpaid day off. The only person that I picked up a negative vibe from was my HR rep who started working there the same day I did. She was actually in the same New Hire Orientation class with me and pulled me into a meeting two months into the job to discuss a rumor that was supposedly going around about me. A week before that I had an infected molar extracted before going into work and had to rinse with water and sea salt every hour for the rest of the day. Apparently someone saw me spitting out blood from the extraction into the bathroom sink and told one of the team leaders that I might be a drug addict. I explained this to my HR Rep, and she told me that I should have let my supervisor know I had the extraction and taken the day off. We both had a laugh, but it left me with a really bad feeling in my gut. Somehow I just knew that it was going to be an issue again in the future.

I spent the last four months working for this company without a single issue from anyone I worked with. My supervisor acknowledged my strong work ethics and creative problem solving skills. I had received an outstanding amount of compliments and positive feedback from policyholders, claimants, and various other providers for my cheerfulness, positive attitude, kindness, and professionalism. My supervisor and several other Claims Managers within my department began mentoring me for a promotion within the next few months. My supervisor even gave me an excellent performance review a few weeks ago for all of my accomplishments as a new employee.

Part of the job requirement for my position is to assist Senior Claims Reps who handle bodily injury claims, ones that usually go through several years of litigation. Last week, one of the Senior Reps I support asked me to void a settlement check for $650k that had gotten lost in the mail. This claimant’s laywer finally agreed to settle the claim after seven years of trying to get a significantly higher settlement. The check that was lost in the mail had been issued by the Adjuster, and since it was sent via regular mail, the check was mailed from the treasury department. Apparently the claimant had moved without providing us his new address, so I was asked to create a priority overnight fed ex label to give to Treasury to send out the check. After she had reissued the second check for $650k she came over to my cubicle and asked me to send it to the address of the claimant’s attorney and followed up with an email that had the address for the law firm but only the attorneys name and I couldn’t find name for the firm in the claim file nor on Google. Since the first check was addressed to the claimant, I put it to his attention of his name with the address for the lawyer.

The next afternoon while I was on a call taking a claim from a woman whose car was totaled an hour before that, the Adjuster comes over to my cubicle all frantic and tells me that I had sent the $650k check to the claimant and that I had screwed up big time. By the time I finished the call I was on, I went over to her cubicle to figure out what she was talking about, but she had already left for the day. I looked up the tracking number which showed a signature that it was delivered at 9:30am. To cover all my bases I called the Attorney to verify that he received it. He confirmed that he did after it had been delivered to the office across the hall because the Fed Ex Delivery guy saw a name other than the lawyers and assumed that it was the name of one of the employees in the office across the hall. The receptionist from the office brought it over to the laywer a few hours later after she had accidentally opened it. It was definitely a bizarre set of events, but I sent an email to the Adjuster letting her know what happened, the lawyer received it and the claimant had already picked it up and deposited it. The last sentence I put in the email was “I know I definitely sent it to the correct address that you specified, the Fed Ex guy apparently screwed up, but everything is okay now”. The next morning I opened up her response (which I thought was going to be a thank you) where the first sentence stated “how dare you for trying to tell me that everything is okay, your error from not following the instructions that I came over and gave to you in person in addition to an email clearly stating that the label needed to be addressed to the lawyer at the updated mailing address. YOU put the claimant’s name on the label of a Federal Express envelope with a $650,000 check inside, and those were NOT my instructions! Thank God the receptionist in the office across the hall was an honest person and brought it to the lawyer, otherwise my professional licenses would be revoked that I spent 20 years working my tail off to earn all because you refuse to properly follow directions”. She had cc’d the email to every single supervisor, manager, director, specialist and VP in the claims department as well everyone in the Human Resources department, and the CEO for the company.

Less than 10 minutes later I’m pulled into a meeting by my HR rep with my supervisor, an associate from our Risk Management department, the HR VP, and the Assistant VP of claims. I provided them with screenshots of the check that I voided for the Adjuster who sent it to the wrong address in the first place, specified the claimant’s name as the addressee with the lawyer’s mailing address, and the email that simply stated “please send the reissued check overnight to the attorney’s address as the claimant does not have an address besides a P.O. Box (federal express will not deliver to PO Boxes) . Everyone present at the meeting clearly understood that the email instructions were vague, that I should have been trained better when dealing with Federal Express transactions because consent is needed from claimants that have legal representation in order to send anything to them directly in the mail. I apologized, as I wasn’t provided with that information during my trainings with the company. My HR rep kept insisting that she didn’t understand why I addressed it to the claimant when rhe Adjuster didn’t specify that in her email instructions .

The next day my direct supervisor told me everything was okay, that I wasn’t in trouble for anything. He just asked me to double check with my examiners to verify the Fed Ex label whenever checks are over $30k. Needless to say that I was relieved, but beyond pissed that the Adjuster threw me under and bus for the whole scenario. I decided to just let it go and focus on my next task

My direct supervisor called out Wednesday and Thursday last week due to a medical issue with his mom. I went into work early Thursday morning to clean and organize my cubicle before my day started. A few minutes after clocking in, my supervisor’s superior tells me she needs to ask me something in private. Considering I had always had a positive relationship with her, I thought she just needed to talk to me really quick in the stairwell as she sometimes had before. I knew something was wrong when she brought me to the other side of the building and couldn’t make eye contact with me. Of course my nemesis HR Rep was there and the first words out of her mouth were “we are terminating you for the severe oversight that you made in regards to the settlement checks that were issued for that claim. You lied and told us that the adjuster made the error of sending it to the wrong address when according to her you issued the check to the address without verifying it with the claimant”. I knew at this point that I was being scapegoated for the entire situation as I didn’t even have access to to the claims payment processing website to have the check issued. She told me I was liar, that they looked up the log and that the check was issued under my name (but refused to show it to me). I stated that she didn’t have a single clue as to what she was talking about and that my supervisor had already told me that I wasn’t in trouble due to it being a simple misunderstanding.

She continued gaslighting me, claiming that all of my coworkers and Senior Adjusters that I worked with complained that I was sloppy and careless when it came to my work, I proved myself to be a sneak and liar with the whole tooth extraction spitting out blood, and that she’s never heard of anyone bleeding after getting a tooth pulled. At this point I was bawling my eyes out begging and pleading for her to believe what I was telling her and to give me another chance as my last review was excellent. She refused to acknowledge anything that came out of my mouth and that according to several Adjusters, checks that were returned to me by the post office went missing and that the company has reason to believe that I’ve been stealing and cashing them. After that absolutely ridiculous accusation with any evidence to even make such a serious assumption I told her that I was done with the conversation, and she tried to get me to sign a paper admitting to everything by threatening to have me blacklisted for future employers. When I still refused to sign the letter, she told me that I wasn’t allowed to return to my cubicle to get my personal items and I had to wait there until security finished inspecting my purse. And that when they’re finished “gathering additional documentation” they’ll send me that the personal effects that they agree to let me have at their own discretion. I literally had to be escorted to my car by a security staff who told me that I’m no longer allowed to be on the company property and that charges will be filed against me if I trespass.

My apologies for the this really long post, but I needed to explain this ongoing nightmare in it’s entirety because I don’t understand why I keep finding myself being accused of being a liar, thief, mentally unstable drug addict when I’ve never stolen ANYTHING in my entire life, and only “drug” I ever experimented with was marijuana on occasion and the last time I smoked pot was a over ten years ago.

I’ve come to the realization that for some reason, people see me as a target for their patethic game of putting other people down in order to febetter about themselves. But it’s not a coincidence that I keep finding myself in these situations where people who have authority over me keep going to the extreme lengths that they do. They’re not just trying to get rid of me, they seem to be determined to destroy my future as well, or at least drive me to closer to the insanity they all claim that I have.

My ex’s lawyer has already tried to use my previous job terminations as evidence of my “instability” and “inability to form meaningful professional relationships with others”. I've spent the last two years working with my therapist through all of this stuff, but he thinks it simply comes down to bad luck. I'm having a hard time accepting that because I know there's something about me that's causing others to exaggerate my shortcomings and to completely dismiss all of my positive qualities.

I just want to be able to provide a good life for my son, but these periods between getting fired and receiving the unemployment are destroying me financially and emotionally. I’m well aware that life isn’t fair, and that when it comes to the professional world, no one cares that I'm a single mom or that
I’ve been through pure hell these last two years. I just want to stay focused on the positive but I know in my heart that in order to keep moving forward I need to figure out how to put and end to all of this misery. Does anyone have any suggestions as to how I can improve the my interactions within other people?
 
R

Roseessa

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2018
Messages
98
Location
Nottingham
You don't need to improve your interactions.
You have done nothing wrong.
Its them that have the problems.
Have you tried suing your old work places?
 
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