Pretty Upset That You’re Not Upset

, , , , | Working | October 21, 2019

(Though my schedule is not written in stone, I’ve worked the same days every week for several months. Because of this, I’ve been able to plan my non-work life with little trouble. One day, I am in the break room looking over my schedule when I see I am scheduled for a day I don’t usually work. It also happens to be a day I have a doctor’s appointment scheduled.)

Me: *to myself* “Oh, crap.”

Coworker: “What’s wrong?”

Me: “Oh, I didn’t ask for next Friday off and I have a doctor’s appointment.”

Coworker: “You don’t normally work Friday, do you?”

Me: “No, that’s why I didn’t think to ask off. I’ll just have to reschedule my appointment. Oh, well!”

Coworker: “Why are you upset if you didn’t ask for it off?”

Me: “Oh, no, I’m okay. It’s my fault for not asking for it off. That’s all.”

Coworker: “I just don’t understand why you’re upset if you’re the one who didn’t think to ask for the day off.”

Me: “I’m not upset. I was just saying that I forgot and now I have to fix it. It’s not a big deal.”

Coworker: “You should have asked for it off.”

Me: *giving up* “Yeah, I guess. Lesson learned.”

(The day of the shift arrives. I walk in and my manager calls me to the office.)

Manager: “I heard there was a problem with today’s shift.”

Me: “There is?”

Manager: “It was brought to my attention that you were complaining about having to work today.”

Me: “No, I wasn’t. Who said that?”

Manager: “I can’t tell you. You know that this shift is within your availability, right?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Manager: “And you didn’t ask for the day off.”

Me: “Right.”

Manager: “So, I don’t understand what the problem is.”

Me: “Nothing. There’s no problem.”

Manager: “That’s not what I heard.”

Me: “Well, like I told [Coworker], I recognize that it’s my fault I didn’t ask for this day off. I was just basing things on how they’ve been for the last several months.”

Manager: “So, you’re upset because I scheduled you on a day you are available?”

Me: “I’m not upset. I assumed I’d have today off because that’s how it’s been for months. When I saw I was scheduled, I changed my appointment. It was my mistake.”

Manager: “I just don’t understand why you were complaining when you did nothing to prevent this.”

Me: “Oh, my gosh.”

Manager: “What?”

Me: “Nothing. Life is good.”

Manager: “Well, maybe in the future you’ll remember to ask for the day off instead of complaining.”

Me: “Yup. Thanks.”

(Apparently, my manager started using this experience as an example of thinking ahead when other employees asked for days off or had conflicts. Every time it came up, I had to explain again that yes, I know it was my fault and yes, I learned from it. And every time, my manager tells the story like I was furious and blamed him.)

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