Friday, January 18, 2013

Voicing Complaints



Did I mention they investigated me all of last year for treating others unfairly?  Not for lack of patient care or for errors in delivering care.  Treatment of my coworkers.  I was the alleged unfair one.  The facts:  none.

The complaints:  My voice is high pitched and I am aloof.  Also, "She looks at you, but doesn't really look at you."

The quality or lack of quality in my voice is not really the issue.  That I have the nerve to speak at all is what gets them mad.  Plus, I am the only one in the place with an American accent.  Yup.  Only one not of foreign birth.  If I were to criticize the pitch of a coworker's voice, I would be accused of racism.  The characteristics of voices I am exposed to on a daily basis include: raspy, sing-song, clicky, husky, hissy, loud, soft, flat, whispering, shouting, garbled, and many other unintelligible qualities.

The ironic part?  The hospital actually has a policy against treating people differently based upon their "voice."  Not kidding.  There is an entire section dedicated to it.  I brought up this policy during the investigation, which, in my view, made the charges moot.  The administrative gurus conducting the investigation were not aware of the policy and after reading it, declared, "You are reading into this," and continued investigating why I continue to use the voice I have when other employees have complained that it is not fair that they have to hear me.

"I use this same quality of voice everywhere, so how is anyone treated unfairly or differently when everyone in my life hears the same voice coming out of my mouth?"  This was not a line of logic that the investigators cared to pursue.  They shook their heads in disbelief when I told them this was my real voice.

Now in case you are wondering, I don't have a squealing voice that sounds like a baby or a bird.  I have been told over the years by different people in different situations that my voice is lovely, soothing, and steady.  Becoming a singer was never one of my goals, but I can honestly write that this is the first time that anyone has told me that my voice is bad and I must be intentionally faking it in order to annoy others.

So they don't like my voice.  They don't like the alternative either, that I am aloof.  If they don't like my voice, which is their evidence that I unfairly treat some people, why are they then complaining that I am aloof?  Wouldn't this spare them from my "unfair" voice?  I don't fit in with the established cliques.  I think I have posted enough stories here to demonstrate that I come to work to work and others come to hang out, collect a paycheck, and harass people as desired.  Not my kind of people.

None of the complainers alleged that in my unfair treatment, I shifted a disproportionate amount of work onto them and not myself or others.  None complained about the workload at all.  It's never about work for them.  They have no intention of doing any work, they do no work, and administration supports this.  A few attendants even stated, "I don't do any work when she is there to show her that I don't like her voice."  This sounded rational to the investigators.

I need to be emotionally detached from this snake pit in order to survive.  I would spend the day crying in the bathroom if I allowed myself to be dragged down by all the bickering and suspicions.

In case you are still wondering, there is a union for the nurses.  One of the nurses I have worked with was the representative for me.  Her voice is less than stellar, rising and falling and finally trailing off at the end.  Yet I never filed a formal complaint against her for it.  This so-called helper chimed in, "They is correct.  You voice bad.  I no understand what you say sometime."  That really bothers me because, first of all, she was supposed to be helping and not hurting me, and second, she has difficulty understanding me because she does not understand English very well, not because my voice is "bad."

She also felt the need to add that I needed more time to learn nursing skills because I am a "new nurse."

This I could challenge on a factual basis.  "I have been a nurse longer than you have and I correct errors that you make."

She sat there, confused, as if she had spoken of elephants and I was countering with couches.

I have a stack of papers detailing what coworkers said about me.  I have not been able to speak to them since I read the nasty, career-destroying garbage they said about me.

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