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Elderly lady cleans the office | Source: Shutterstock
Elderly lady cleans the office | Source: Shutterstock

Entitled Worker Belittled My Wife, Who Works as an Office Cleaner — I Was Furious and Put Him in His Place

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Jun 03, 2024
12:05 P.M.

Susan, a 61-year-old office cleaner, faced humiliation when a coworker, Mark, maliciously knocked over her mop bucket and belittled her. After HR dismissed her complaints, Susan and her husband Jack took matters into their own hands, exposing Mark's abusive behavior and fighting for justice.

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Susan enjoys reading | Source: Midjourney

Susan enjoys reading | Source: Midjourney

My wife, Susan, is 61 and works as a cleaner in an office. She loves the job because it gives her some extra money and, with the flexible hours, she gets to spend more time with our grandkids. Plus, she can enjoy her favorite hobby — reading books. But recently, something bad happened at her job.

One evening, she came home looking upset. I noticed right away.

Jack notices Susan is upset | Source: Midjourney

Jack notices Susan is upset | Source: Midjourney

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"Susan, what's wrong?" I asked, setting down my newspaper.

She sighed and sat down beside me. "You won't believe what happened at work today, Jack."

"What is it? Tell me."

Susan tells Jack about her troubles | Source: Midjourney

Susan tells Jack about her troubles | Source: Midjourney

She took a deep breath. "I was mopping the hallway floor, minding my own business. Suddenly, I heard the company manager, Mr. Thompson, yelling at someone. He was really laying into them for missing a deadline. Said it cost the company an important sponsor."

"That doesn't sound good," I said, leaning in closer.

Mark shouts at Susan | Source: Midjourney

Mark shouts at Susan | Source: Midjourney

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"No, it wasn't," she continued. "The yelling was so loud that even people walking by stopped to listen."

"Who was he yelling at?" I asked.

"I don't know, I couldn't see from where I was. But then, out of nowhere, this man with an angry face stormed out of the office. He looked furious."

A bucket with dirty water | Source: Midjourney

A bucket with dirty water | Source: Midjourney

"What did you do?" I asked.

"I just kept mopping, trying to stay out of his way. But then he came right up to me and kicked over my bucket of water."

"He did what?" I almost shouted.

Susan tries to clean up spilled water | Source: Midjourney

Susan tries to clean up spilled water | Source: Midjourney

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"Yes, he knocked over the bucket and dirty water went everywhere. It even seeped into the neighboring offices," she said, her voice trembling.

"That's terrible! What did you do?"

"I started cleaning up the mess right away. But then he yelled at me, ‘What a klutz! You're so old, you can't even mop the floor right?' And then he just walked off."

Mark attracted the unwanted attention | Source: Midjourney

Mark attracted the unwanted attention | Source: Midjourney

I could see the pain in her eyes. "That's awful, Susan. Did anyone help you?"

"No, Jack. People from the nearby offices came out and started telling me to clean up the mess. They thought I had made it."

"Did you explain what happened?" I asked.

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Sad Susan | Source: Midjourney

Sad Susan | Source: Midjourney

"I tried. But later, my boss called me into her office. She told me that if anything like this happened again, I'd be fired."

"Fired? That's not fair!" I exclaimed.

"I know. I told her what really happened, but no one believed me," Susan said, her eyes filling with tears.

Angry Jack | Source: Midjourney

Angry Jack | Source: Midjourney

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I felt my anger rising. "This isn't right. We need to do something about this."

"What can we do, Jack? They don't believe me."

"I'm going to the office tomorrow. I'll talk to the HR manager," I said firmly.

Jack somes to talk to an HR manager | Source: Midjourney

Jack somes to talk to an HR manager | Source: Midjourney

The next day, I went to her office building. As soon as I entered, I asked to see the HR manager.

"Hello, I'm Jack Johnson. My wife, Susan, works here as a cleaner," I said when I was ushered into his office.

"Please, have a seat, Mr. Johnson. How can I help you?" the HR manager asked.

HR manager | Source: Midjourney

HR manager | Source: Midjourney

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I took a seat and explained the whole incident. "Yesterday, a man named Mark knocked over her bucket and humiliated her. She tried to explain, but no one believed her."

The HR manager listened carefully. "Let's check the security camera footage."

We watched the video together. It showed the man leaving the manager's office angrily and heading towards Susan. But the camera angle didn't capture him knocking over the bucket.

HR manager looks up the video | Source: Midjourney

HR manager looks up the video | Source: Midjourney

"I'm sorry, Mr. Johnson," the HR manager said, shaking his head. "Without concrete evidence, we can't hold Mark accountable. He's been a respected employee here for ten years with no complaints against him."

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"So, my wife just has to take this? She's the one who got yelled at and threatened with losing her job," I said, my frustration growing.

Frustrated Jack | Source: Midjourney

Frustrated Jack | Source: Midjourney

"I understand your frustration, Mr. Johnson, but our hands are tied without more proof," the HR manager replied.

Feeling defeated, I left the office. When I got home, Susan was waiting. She looked at me with hopeful eyes, but I had to tell her the truth.

"I'm sorry, honey. They said there's nothing they can do without proof. The camera didn't catch him in the act."

Jack hugs Susan | Source: Midjourney

Jack hugs Susan | Source: Midjourney

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She nodded, trying to be strong, but I could see the hurt in her eyes.

I found it hard to believe that Mark had no complaints in ten years, so I decided to investigate further. I asked Susan to invite her colleagues over for lunch so I could get to know them better. Susan often shared how nice her coworkers were.

Jack explains his plan | Source: Midjourney

Jack explains his plan | Source: Midjourney

We had ten guests: eight women who worked as cleaners on different floors and two electricians. We had a wonderful time, but during the gathering, I had a plan.

Casually, I brought up the incident involving Susan and how HR had dismissed my concerns. "You know," I started, "HR brushed off Susan's complaint about Mark. Has anyone else had issues with him?"

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Mark sabotages electricity in the office | Source: Midjourney

Mark sabotages electricity in the office | Source: Midjourney

There was a pause, and then one of the electricians, Tom, spoke up. "Mark's always been a jerk," he said. "He's sabotaged our tools a few times."

A cleaner named Maria nodded. "He's belittled me in front of others more times than I can count."

Another cleaner, Linda, added, "He's smart about it, though. He knows the blind spots where cameras don't catch him."

Mark looks at the camera's blind spots | Source: Midjourney

Mark looks at the camera's blind spots | Source: Midjourney

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It became clear that Mark had a pattern of bullying, targeting the cleaners especially, knowing their complaints were usually ignored.

With everyone shocked by Mark's behavior, I devised a plan. "Why don't we write a letter to the CEO?" I suggested. "Detail everything Mark has done."

Susan and her colleagues agreed. They wrote a detailed letter, outlining how Mark had mistreated them. Not trusting HR, we sent the letter directly to the CEO. While we didn't expect immediate action, we decided to gather more evidence.

Susan writes a letter to the CEO | Source: Midjourney

Susan writes a letter to the CEO | Source: Midjourney

I bought a small recorder and instructed Susan on what to do. "Just get him talking," I said. "We need his own words."

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The next day, Susan waited for Mark outside the office. When he came out, she approached him. "Mark, why did you humiliate me? What did I do to deserve that? What would your mother say?" she asked.

Mark smirked. "My mother would be proud of me for putting someone like you in your place," he replied arrogantly. "Watch out, or I might spill dirty water again and blame it on you. You're nobody here, while I'm an important employee."

Mark shouts at Susan again | Source: Midjourney

Mark shouts at Susan again | Source: Midjourney

I recorded the entire conversation from a distance, just in case. When he left, I saw a victorious smile on Susan's face. "Got him," she said.

The next day, we went to HR with the recording. "This is proof of what he's done," I said, playing the audio.

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HR tried to cover it up. "This doesn't prove anything substantial," they claimed.

HR tries to cover everything up | Source: Midjourney

HR tries to cover everything up | Source: Midjourney

Fed up, I decided to take a different route. I uploaded the video online and included the audio from Susan's recorder. The video quickly went viral, and various media outlets contacted us for interviews. Susan shared her story on camera, and we provided the evidence.

The following day, the company's CEO issued a public apology. "I was unaware of the systematic abuse by my employee," he said in a statement. "I apologize to Susan and her colleagues."

The CEO makes an apologetic statement | Source: Midjourney

The CEO makes an apologetic statement | Source: Midjourney

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Mark and the HR manager were fired from the company, and Susan received compensation. She was happy that I had stood up for her in such a modern and effective way.

"I can't believe it's over," Susan said, relief washing over her face. "Thank you, Jack. You really made a difference."

I smiled at her. "You deserved justice, and I'm glad we could get it. Now, let's move forward and enjoy some peace."

Susan and Jack walk together | Source: Midjourney

Susan and Jack walk together | Source: Midjourney

Susan nodded, holding my hand tightly. "Yes, let's do that. And maybe, finally, I can just enjoy my work and my books without any more trouble."

We both knew it had been a tough journey, but seeing Susan's smile made it all worth it.

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My MIL Gave Homemade Dolls to My Daughter - I Forbade Her from Coming near Us after I Found Out the Truth about Them

When Katie discovers that her mother-in-law has been making strange dolls for her daughter, she confronts the old woman, only to discover that she has been holding onto grief for her entire life. But what does that mean for the mysterious dolls? And the little girl who plays with them?

My grandmother died when I was very young, but I always associated love and care with her. So, I always knew that when I had children, I wanted them to know the love of a grandmother. When my daughter, Lila, was born, that was exactly what I wanted.

A grandmother and granddaughter | Source: Pexels

A grandmother and granddaughter | Source: Pexels

My mother lives a few hours away from us, so she and Lila have more of a virtual relationship.

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But the silver lining is my mother-in-law, Susan. She only lives a few streets over, and she loves spending time with Lila.

Want to know what happened next? Click here to read the rest of the story.

This work is inspired by real events and people, but it has been fictionalized for creative purposes. Names, characters, and details have been changed to protect privacy and enhance the narrative. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental and not intended by the author.

The author and publisher make no claims to the accuracy of events or the portrayal of characters and are not liable for any misinterpretation. This story is provided "as is," and any opinions expressed are those of the characters and do not reflect the views of the author or publisher.

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