A Little Co-Worker Interaction

What She Wore: Pink, long-sleeve tee; tweed skirt that is mainly white with pink and purple running through it; purple, pointy-toed mules with a pink bow.  The kids call em my witch shoes.

I work with a woman who’s in her second year of teaching, but in her first year as a special ed teacher.   We’re on the same team, and service the same group of kids, so I’m the one who’s showing her the ropes.  We have a fairly interesting working relationship.  We’re close in age.  We come from the same area, and she’s well aware that I’m a private school girl.  For some reason, I think this makes her very sensative around me.  She once told me that she doesn’t like to ask me questions because I smile while she’s asking them.  She told me that she thinks I’m looking at her like she stupid.  I thought I was looking welcoming and ready to help.

Today, I stepped on her toes a gain.  We were going to a portable that she’d never been to before, and we were walking together.  We stopped to talk  to someone, and when we started off again, she went in the wrong direction.  I called out to her, and she turned around and said, You don’t have to talk to me like I’m a poodleWell, you were going in the wrong directionStill, you don’t have to poodle me.  Now, I have a very sing-songy voice at school; the kids have accused me on more than one occasion of talking like an elementary school teacher.  I have a silly voice!  I made an executive decision at that moment: I wasn’t going to stop talking like that any time soon, so I told her, That’s how I talk–you’re just going to have to get over it.  She fumed for a minute and huffed a bit, and then kept walking with me out to the portable. 

I used to be so worried about making people mad.  After teaching for a couple of years, I come to expect it.  Now, granted, I usually expect thirteen-year-olds to be mad, but still–there’s something very refreshing about know that I can’t be bullied by another person’s anger. 

I’m sorry if I made her feel like a poodle–that’s my voice.

KM

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About takedeux

In one summer I had a baby who was hospitalized for five weeks, quit my job, and moved back to my hometown. This blog is about starting over.
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29 Responses to A Little Co-Worker Interaction

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I didn\’t realize that you could talk to someone like they were a poodle.  How very interesting! I suppose it\’s a compliment to you that she didn\’t say that you were speaking to her like a doberman or something vicious. 😉  I have a feeling she\’s a triffle SENSITIVE.  Oh, KM, you didn\’t pat her on the head now, did you??  Didn\’t I talk to you about that recently?!?!

  2. Unknown says:

    Sounds like she might have some self esteem issues.  You didn\’t say anything wrong to her, she\’s probably just super sensitive.  There are lots of people like that in the world, you\’re doing the right thing by not letting it get to you.  God bless 🙂

  3. tassietoo says:

    Congratulations on being featured again!

  4. russ says:

    I usually reserve my poodle voice for… well poodles… Actually I was unaware that someone could even have a poodle voice. Does this mean there is a German Shepard voice and a Collie voice? I know Lassie had a voice but…
     
    Sounds like someone is feeling a little uncomfy with the new situation she\’s in…
     
    Great job standing up for yourself!!
     
    Now sit! LOL
     
    Russ

  5. Ami says:

    Hey there! Congrats! Doesn\’t it feel cool to be featured???I think that as you get older, you realize that you can\’t please everyone unless you compromise yourself. At least I\’ve realized that. So kudos to you for stepping up and refusing to change who you are to avoid hurting someone else\’s feelings. Eventually, she\’ll come around, once she figures out how to interact with you. You\’ll see. And if she doesn\’t? Well, that\’s just her own problem.

  6. Hollie says:

    Featured once again, Woohooo, it seems that all my favs have or are being featured this past month…Woo hoo!

  7. Tracy says:

    Good for you for telling her that\’s just how you talk and not apologizing!! Sounds like she is insecure!
     
     

  8. Aimee says:

    wow..never knew a smile could make someone feel bad?? oh well hand them out anyways…
    :o) smiles are contagious…pass one to people that you love and those you don\’t… :o)

  9. Gina says:

    That just seems odd that she would be sensitive about you being a private school girl.    Hmm.  Would she rather you frown and roll her eyes when she has a question? 

  10. Unknown says:

    Good for you for standing up for yourself. She seems a little sensative tobe "offended" by a smile.

  11. Unknown says:

    Hey I moved back to msn spaces.  Just wanted to let you know!

    God bless 🙂

  12. Sarah says:

    It sounds to me like she is trying to come up with reasons to make you feel like you are demeaning to her. I\’d like to know how some one talks to a poodle. Is it different than, say, talking to a lab or a collie? Hmmm. Something to think about. I say way to go telling her that\’s just how you talk and that she should learn to deal with it.

  13. Tysley says:

    Smiling is a crime?  Who knew?  Congrats on being featured….again.  I love your Space!  -T

  14. WINDOW LIVE says:

    I have a very authoritative voice that people take the wrong way many times.  I have worked very hard to learn to watch my non-verbal cues so that it puts most people at ease.  This is mainly because I work in a private sector where the person you are barking orders at (pun intended) may be your boss tomorrow. Congrats on being spotlighted.  It is very well deserved.

  15. Becca says:

    Oh please. Some people need to relax.
     
    Becca

  16. Nadine says:

     Okay I have learned a new term….Poodle me.
     
     I would think it would be more like a heeler, herding her around…..not a poodle….poodle rarely stray from the master\’s heals!
     
     And don\’t let it bother you….Next time let her go in the wrong direction!!

  17. Stacy says:

    It sounds to me like she is too sensitive and nervous around you.  Tell her to relax.
     
    -S.

  18. Unknown says:

    Congrats on being featured!

  19. Sheryl-Ann says:

    Oh my, she sounds like she has self-confidence issues because her reaction to you calling out to her seems a tad bit unwarranted.  Be gentle with her – she will learn a thing or two from you.  Hope your week is a great one!

  20. Big Dog Mom says:

    If her toes are that sensitive, then she should get herself some steel toed shoes.  If they are that sensitive, then we can\’t be responsible for what happens if they are out in the open.  And to be offended by a smile?  I\’ve never heard of anyone being offended by a co-worker being NICE to them. 

  21. CJ says:

    She\’s definitely feeling a little out of her element around you.  Could be that you exude so much self confidence it\’s throwing her off base.  Oh well.  Her issue, definitely not yours.  Would it have better for her self esteem if you\’d let her continue off in her own direction while you continued on your course?  She would have felt even more foolish if she\’d had to hunt you down later.  You handled the situation well.

  22. Wahzat says:

    I had the same problem with a new younger co-worker at my old job. She pissed me off to tears. I think female co-workers come into the workplace with chips. They don\’t expect to be told anything. And honestly as I write this I am thinking my goodness I do hope I am not like that in a new job. Anyway like you I have an interestingly unique voice 🙂  I have been liken to a cartoon character quite a few times. I sound young, I look young and I smile alot and my new co-worker ( I was showing her the ropes in order to hand over my project to her) took my guidance and hand-holding as condescending and patronising.
     
    Eventually when she released the chip… she saw that I was her best ally, but like you she couldn\’t see it until I put my foot down.
     
    Good for you for standing up for yourself!
     
    Love reading your blog… how are you doing these days by the way?
    Wahzat!

  23. K says:

    LOL… like a poodle???  What\’s that… LOL… odd comment?
     
    I say your singing voice will be perfect for when the time comes to be singing lullabies… in time… right?  Right… LOL
     
    You can\’t please everyone and its obvious she has insecurities around you – either that or a rather large chip on her sholder!!??  Sad though but in the end … we simply don\’t or can\’t get along with EVERYONE!!!
     
    Congrats on being featured again hon… it seems they are recycling blogs… but at least they are picking the pretty damn amazing ones!
     
    Ciao bella,
    KC

  24. Dawn says:

    well congrats on being featured again…and who cares what the nasties say….
     
    as for the whole poodle thing…good for you for not being bullied…not a lot of us can say the same thing about being bullied by other adults.

  25. Lizzie-Beth4Him says:

    K.M.
     
    Why does it seem that it is often women acting that way with other women?  That has happened to me and you handle it very well.  Being yourself and sticking up for yourself is the best way!  I got a good laugh out of the cheese burger incident!  Have a blessed week!

  26. Jaysey says:

    Can she say "insecuirty?" 😉

  27. Jaysey says:

    Better yet, can I spell "insecurity?"  Long week…yes, already.

  28. Sandy says:

    She sounds like she is emotionally high maintenance.  One of those who always gets her feeling hurt.  Have fun with this one. LOL  Did you ever find out why the kids hated the one teacher?
     
    Raven

  29. Q says:

    Poodle is as poodle does…
    And what would Cesar Milan say, anyway?  Hmmm?
    He\’d say you are, of course, (imagine his carmelly-warm Spanish accent), "the pack leader exuding calm assertiveness over a yappy, insecure, small dog persona."  Ha!
    That poor woman just needs to be taken on a long walk with a short leash.
    😉
    Natalie

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