Monday, April 6, 2009

Maybe you shouldn't talk about that on the floor...

Today at work was my three and a half year review! doesn't really seem that long (and at the same time it feels like forever).

We talked about the usual stuff: how I am amazing at my job, how much I do for the store, and how my approach for coaching conversations could use some finesse, etc.

Then comes this: "I don't know how to put this but maybe you shouldn't discuss your sexuality on the floor."


I was just like really? Really? And then went into a fifteen minute lecture on how I was completely allowed to discuss my sexuality and relationship on the floor just like every other person who works there. And he didn't get for at least the first few minutes how his discussions of daily life and mine are exactly the same...mine are just a little more controversial since I'm a lesbian. I think he finally got it, finally understood that it's just implied in everything he says and does that he's straight but that sometimes I have to say that I'm gay or things don't make sense.

Idk. He wasn't trying to be rude. He wasn't trying to offend. I think a little he was even trying to protect me. Indeed he did say, "Cassie, this is the midwest we're talking about here."

I just feel a little frustrated by it all. He quoted company policy on not discussing religion and politics on the floor (which he has done with me a million times, in conversations he started...).

He also mentioned that it might make another employee uncomfortable (me talking about being gay...not my sex life, just being gay).

Fact: the company is very adamant about embracing diversity (not tolerating, embracing).

Fact: if another employee has a problem with me being a lesbian, that is his/her problem. If they can't cope, they are the ones in trouble, not me.

Of course I explained all of this to him. By the end of the conversation he seemed totally on my side and sort of like he regretted saying anything. He was worried he'd offended me or made me mad.

Mostly I just feel like I'm a learning experience for him. Like I'm the trial and error. Like I'm the one who's adjusting his was of thinking about gay people. And like that's a little weird...but hey, at least he's learning right?



  1. You did a great job explaining the facts to your boss. Let him know your much more productive too because you are out and don't have to worry about making up stories.

    If you need anything, I do LGBT diversity training at work and have supporting information that I could send you. But it looks like you have a good handle on things.

  2. Or maybe he just gave up the argument because you weren't getting it. I'm not saying this to be rude either, but just an opinion. Maybe he realized it hit a nerve with you and he just didn't care enough to get his point across. Bringing it up to you was a trial error thing.. I don't think he necessarily is learning through you. But, I wasn't there, and essentially I don't know.

    I am Kylee... Jennifer's friend, by the way. You know me from somewhere I shall not mention! ;)

  3. I think it's inappropriate to discuss any kind of sexual or personal relationships at work.. Co-workers shouldn't be talking about sleeping with anyone, dating anyone, or even how much they hate a mutual-friend, if any customers are present. That's regardless of gay/lesbian/straight/bi/whatever.

  4. hey kylee! yeah, maybe but i kind of don't think so based on some stuff he said...who knows though

    jenn...what do you talk to your coworkers about then??? just out of curiosity? because other than your job what do you do in your life that doesn't involved friends/a relationship? i could talk about bathing? or exercising? or food? or cleaning? and um that's about it....

  5. i dont know. i mostly keep to myself at work or talk about whatever they're talking about.. but my situation is different, we're 15 twenty year olds stuck in the basement of the state capitol all day.. we're not standing in front of our 'customers'

  6. i guess. mostly if there are very many customers about then we don't really have a lot of time for discussions of personal life...we're busy making their drinks, etc. and if it's slow and we're cleaning, well we're likely to discuss our lives a lot more...but if it's slow enough to do that, then it's not so likely there would be customers within earshot.