The CEO fired my boyfriend and now he’s after me

Dear Evil HR Lady,

I have been at my current place of employment for over twelve years. I am the only in-house graphic designer. A year and a half ago, I started dating a new employee in my company. His boss said horrible things to him about me and other women in the office. He tried to talk to his boss and then his boss’s boss. He got nowhere. So he went to HR and then to the CEO of our company. Two days later he was fired. He filed a suit and it was just settled in July.

All of a sudden, my CEO is starting to bother me. He called me into his office with my boss and told me that he had many incidents of my making mistakes on projects. He said he had documented several of these mistakes (which I know nothing about). Recently, a document went out with a typo in the headline. It was signed off on by the department manager that requested the document, but I was told that it was all on me. I was also told that I made a mistake on a press release that went out. The problem with that is that I didn’t do the press release. Other people within my organization do work that I am supposed to do, and all their mistakes get blamed on me. I have become the company scapegoat and am very concerned about this.

The president of our company has said inappropriate things to me in the past, as have other employees. When you go to HR you get in trouble. So clearly no one goes there anymore. I don’t know what to do. I have two kids, and the flexibility and insurance that come with my job are crucial.

To read the answer, click here: The CEO fired my boyfriend and now he’s after me

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5 thoughts on “The CEO fired my boyfriend and now he’s after me

  1. Suzanne, your final paragraph speaks volumes. “As the Captain goes, so goes the Crew” – an old cliché, but so true. In a small business the person at the top ultimately holds everyone’s job security in his/her hands. No need in wasting time crying over right & wrong – just find another job.

  2. I see little downside to making a claim of associational retaliation now. It sounds like that’s what they’re doing and since you’re almost surely going to get fired anyway doing this will probably buy you some time, a settlement, and possibly a case Even if the EEOC says there’s no case they would have to worry about illegally retaliating against you for filing the claim.

  3. I actually agree with Joey, it sounds like associational retaliation to me. If she has been there 12 years without issue, and now he has issues with her work, after the BF is gone and his lawsuit is settled, she may have a decent case. I would definitely look for a new job and get out sooner rather than later, but as EHRL says, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT!

  4. I also agree with the retaliation. Document everything. However, I would not approach HR soley with your information or complaint. I think it sounds like HR is biased and could quickly go to the higher ups with your claims. If you have all of your documentation as well as the documentation from when your boyfriend filed the lawsuit (plus still contact with the lawyer – wouldn’t hurt to call him up and ask for a consultation/advice), you could maybe bring up to HR that you have seeked legal advice regarding your concerns. This would bide you some time and give you some protection (hopefully) while you are looking for a new job. And when leaving, you could also ask for copies of any kudos that may be listed in your file of 12 years, what they may say when asked for references, etc. etc. Also, be sure to get that in writing and say you will pass it by your lawyer first.

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