I Have A Coworker Bully


Well-known member
(I'm sorry this is a bit long.)

I recently started working in a deli at my local grocery store about a month ago. I actually do like my job; it keeps me busy, it's only a 5 minute drive from where I live, I kinda have fun with it as I'm also a baker, it helps with my social anxiety with constant exposure to people, and I get along really well with a few of my coworkers. For the most part all of my coworkers are fairly easy to get along with, except for one.

We'll call her Donna. I swear Donna has painted a big red target on my back since the first day I worked with her. That first day I worked with her, I was being trained to do the night shift. Or I should've been, just to know how it worked in case I ever needed to work that shift. But because I'm typically a morning shift person and a baker, she didn't really teach me anything. Whenever she attempted to, say when taking apart a slicer to clean it, she'd go through it so quickly I didn't even have a chance to ask a question or understand. She'd just say, "You're never going to need to learn how to do this because you probably won't ever work this shift." Meanwhile, when I DID try to do something, she'd micromanage me on how I was doing it wrong. When I would ask her why I did something wrong, she would say, "Because I'm right." And then after so many questions she eventually said to me, "I don't like your attitude." At one point during that shift she was talking to another coworker beside me while I was cleaning and then looks at me and comments how "quiet" I am and how I "must get away with everything." Also, to go further, during that shift she was so busy talking crap about all the other coworkers that work in the department that she screwed up 3 orders. When customers came to her and said she did it wrong, she'd hand it back to them and say, "I don't know what your problem is." I managed to jump in and correct them and apologize for everything.

The entire shift that day was a living nightmare, and the next day when I had to work mornings I told my manager about it. We'll call her Sarah. Sarah was shocked by what I told her, but she said she knew something must've happened because the store owner apparently saw her talking down to me at one point and told Sarah to not let us work together again. Sarah told me that 3 other people in the department can't work with her either. For those reasons or otherwise, I don't know. But Sarah and the store owner came to the agreement that when the shift change comes (from 12 - 5pm to 4pm - 9pm) around and Donna is working, I can leave as soon as she gets there -- meaning I can leave at 4 rather than 5pm.

Well, yesterday evening I had to work with her. I could've left, but we were so busy I did not find it fair to leave my other coworker swamped with the work we never got to, so I stayed to the end of my shift instead of leaving at 4pm. As I was trying to clean up the front counters because they were so disgusting from being so busy earlier that afternoon (we were swamped with customers with only 2 of us working), Donna pretty much kicked me out. Every time I tried to do something, she'd tell me, "I don't know why you're doing that when [this] and [this] needs to be done." Then I'd try to do it and she'd micromanage me again. At one point when I was in the middle of something she said, "You know, instead of doing that you could be changing the garbage because that's what the day shift does and us big girls know how to do it." Mind you, it's not like I don't know this, I'm not an idiot. As I was in the middle of something I overheard her say to a customer who made a mistake with her order, "You tried to screw me up! I'm going to kill you! Hehehehehehehe!" I turned around to see the customer sheepishly smile and apologize. Not long after, when Donna was cleaning the slicer, another customer came up and I decided to take her order. Donna automatically cut in front of me between me and the customer and said, "I'll take this. You need to do [this]." After she was done with that customer she went to the back kitchen where my other coworker was doing dishes and told her how "lazy" I was being. At that point I dropped everything and left. I got out whatever she wanted me to do and put everything on the counter and left 15 minutes early I was so angry.

Needless to say she is an absolute j-erk. She treats no one else this way, from what I can tell. I feel like I can't even talk to her about how she's treating me because otherwise she'll attack me. I feel like I can't go to the store owner about this either because of how he didn't interfere when he did see how she was treating me before. I know I don't work with her all the time, hardly ever, but when situations like that come up, I don't know how to even handle it except ignore her. I don't even know how she's getting away treating customers like she is either. :idontknow: It just isn't right. I guess what I'm trying to get at here besides ranting is, is there anything at all I can do about this?


Well-known member
That is no fun.

I have been in similar situations, it's always a female...always in a pizza place- I am sooo glad don't work at those awful places anymore!!

I rarely confront people ever. It is so against my nature, and I would screw it up and feel worse so I either have just learned to deal with it or more often I just quit. I feel like I give off a vibe of misery when I am in jobs that don't suit me and it becomes hard for me not to show it. Then I become a target for the other employees who are bullies, who it is strange, have been female. Guys are always usually cool to me.

She is older than you and sees you as a threat somehow. People are weak and sad that are that way. I look back and just feel pity for them.


Well-known member
I rarely confront people ever. It is so against my nature, and I would screw it up and feel worse so I either have just learned to deal with it or more often I just quit.
^ Confrontation is against my nature too. Or it usually is. It takes a lot to get me so angry I'm at my breaking point where I would confront you. But even then, like you said, I'm also afraid I'd screw it up somehow.

She is older than you and sees you as a threat somehow. People are weak and sad that are that way. I look back and just feel pity for them.
^ I do feel sorry she's such a miserable person. Believe it or not, this woman is as old as my mother, treating me this way. It's sad and disgusting.

Thanks henny and Molly. I was talking to a couple coworkers about her today -- not talking crap about her, just mentioned what she did yesterday. Apparently she's so dictative, she's kicked others to the back of the kitchen before too just so she could work by herself up front. They told me they usually just go with it because they can't stand her otherwise. But I don't play that game. Which is why she's so rude towards me. Because I don't listen to her. I'm here to do my job, not be pushed around.

I did talk to my manager again today over what happened yesterday. She just shook her head, because it's ridiculous how that person acts. She apologized to me that I had to deal with that, but the best I can do is ignore her and avoid her. She's in no position to fire her (if she was, she'd be gone for sure), and even if I brought it up to the owners of the store, they "put up with a lot of crap." She mentioned that there are "quite a few people" who are working and have worked there before that "should be fired because of the way they act and treat other people" and "it's not fair." So yeah, I guess I can't do anything except continue to avoid. Wish I could do more, but I guess not. :idontknow: