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Friday, December 2, 2011

New Stuff

I've been sitting at my desk brewing. I've been generally unhappy at work. Not with the work, which is stimulating. And I just finished a class on Trauma which was generally great and which I find myself already using in my work, and I'm considering taking a training program-1-2 years for certification and an area of specialty.
What I'm brewing about is the change of atmosphere and attitude in the office. I've been a Senior Counselor in this office since 2007. It was a promotion from another office. Senior Counselor is first line management. Now there are 3 of us for about 228 counselors, arranged in units of about 14. Mine has 9 counselors and 4 support staff, with one counselor and one support staff on long term sick leave.
We have just come through an acrimonious period with a District Office Manager who was my dear friend and my difficult manager and who was universally disliked by the office. I was distrusted because I was her-long term-friend. Also in my unit I had a union organizer who was required to spend long periods of time in Albany. My friend/boss became seriously ill and retired. Shortly thereafter, my counselor sent a four page letter to Humal Resources complaining about me and my management of him, with frequent references to my boss-she was quite the micromanager! This lette was discussed by much higher ups, including the assistant commisioner and the counselor was transferred to a different unit. The letter was full of lies. It was also written by a union lawyer. I was given no recourse.
This is all a lead in to what happened next.
I had one good friend in the office. She was the other lesbian here. When I got here she asked me to supervise her in finishing her masters degree in counseling, which I did gladly. We have been good friends ever since, socializing with our partners and lunching several times a week. About two months ago I noticed that she was no longer available for lunch. It was her busy month and she was wearing a soft cast for a leg injury, so I gave her the benefit of the doubt. but it went on. We finally had lunch, she was stiff. Finally I stopped by her office to chat and she let me have it! She said that I took the management position on union negotions. I was at fault with the counselor. I could have bent the rules to accomodate him. (did I mention that my boss was a micromanager?) She had no interest in anything I had to say, and she did 'nt even give me a chance to speak- and we have not spoken since. I'm hurt and I'm angry. She's not a senior, but she's on the management team. At this time she's the only other woman on the management team. I feel so awkward just being in this small community right now. I also know from her strong reaction that Brian showed the letter he wrote to others and she saw it.
If anyone has any advice for me, I'd really appreciate it.