Reaching Break-ing Point

, , , | Learning | February 14, 2018

(During my A-levels, I’m staying in a supported house for teenagers on the autistic spectrum. Unfortunately, the staff seem to lack a lot of basic life skills themselves. Each morning, we’re provided with a set amount of money for paying bus fares and buying lunch. I come down one morning to find the office locked. A quick search finds the whole staff in the smoking area.)

Me: “I need to collect my bus money.”

Staff #1: “We’re on our break. You can get it when we’re done.”

Me: “How long?”

Staff #1: “A few minutes.”

Me: “I don’t have time; I need to get the bus in five minutes.”

Staff #1: “That doesn’t matter.”

Me: “Yes, it does. I’ll miss my lectures.”

Staff #1: “Well, there’s nothing I can do about that. We can’t bring cigarettes in the office, and [Staff #2] is the only one with the keys.”

Me: “Couldn’t you just get someone else to hold it for a minute?”

Staff #2: “I have a right to these breaks! You don’t tell me what to do!”

Me: “Never mind. I’ll just use my own money.”

Staff #2: “Hey! You need to sign out.”

Me: “Just tick it off when you’re back in the office.”

Staff #2: “No. You need to be in the office when we do it.”

Me: “I don’t have time. Bye.”

Staff #2: “It’s important you follow procedure. You can’t just walk out like this.”

Me: “My studies happen to be more important to me! Besides, I kept up my end of the bargain. I came to the office at the right time. It’s not my fault if you’re not coordinating your breaks. If procedure is important, why not do your freaking job?”

(I stormed out. Of course, they had some angry words for me when I came back in the evening. Worth it.)

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