She screamed at people on the office floor. She screamed at people at her office door.
She screamed anywhere she damn well pleased AND I did not know she was abusing me.
In the early 1980s, I worked at a large insurance company in NYC. I got a position there as a management trainee. I was so happy. Here was the dream coming true.
I had immigrated to NY in 1974.
I had finished college while holding down 3 part-time jobs.
I had succeeded in getting a scholarship for graduate school and NOW I was ready to take the world by storm.
During the training process, I was sent to many different departments and I eagerly ate up all that I was learning.
THEN….. I was sent to HER department!
Her initials were MF! Yes, no kidding…MF.
Her style of clothing was sharp and tailored and she was always straightening her hair with her fingers, never a single strand was out of place.
At first, I really admired her. She was just three years older than me and she was already in middle management, marching her way to upper management. I wanted to be just like her.
She quickly zeroed in on me and she gave me all the attention I ever wanted…more than I ever wanted.
She took great pride in screaming at me when and wherever she damned well pleased.
She was a terror. Her face would get all red and inflamed and she would take great big gulps of breath and just let her vitriol pour all over people.
I began to have major issues with my health and was always sick. I went to every doctor I could find and nothing was wrong with me.
Little did I know that it was the unbearable stress of that office environment that was making me ill.
I never associated her incessant screaming and mistreatment of her employees with abuse.
I grew up in an environment where people screamed at each other ALL the time.
In my home and neighborhood, the adults were mean. They screamed at children whenever they felt like it.
Children were not to be cherished or taught. They were to be yelled at, made to feel like crap and then beaten for not behaving like little adults.
I was primed for the screaming lunatic that I worked for.
She could not have asked for a better victim.
The sad thing was this…
I did not know that I was a victim.
I thought that I was the perfect feminist;
A force to be reckoned with.
I was NONE of the above.
I was a young woman trying to recover from childhood abuse and not knowing that it WAS a big deal that I had been abused.
I did not realize that the treatment I had received as a child SET me up to be the perfect victim for the rest of my life.
I did not realize that I expected to be treated badly. I accepted that I was less worthy than others and so was not at all surprised when I was yelled at for not measuring up.
Here is what I wished I could have done to MF!
I wished I could have said, “You screaming at me?”
I wished I could have channeled a future child of mine who liked to say, “Why don’t you try being an adult for a change.”
I wished I could have respected myself enough to walk away from the Screamer and realize that her problems belonged to HER.
Here is my advice to all of you with screamers in your life….
Envision the famous painting the SCREAM when you find yourself face to face with a SCREAMER, it may provide the distance you need to remove yourself from their toxic energies.
And ALWAYS remember that you DESERVE to be respected BUT you must respect yourself first.
Love and light,