Dealing with work pressure can be very hard sometimes, so much that one might look to questionable options to help with the stress.
However, there are certain behaviors and actions that are unacceptable in a work environment, regardless of how the situation might call for it.
OP wants to know if he's wrong for snapping back at a co-worker who said he had bad breath.
OP (32M) works as an accounts manager for a large consulting firm. He says it's a very competitive environment, with everyone doing whatever they can to climb up the cooperate ladder.
According to OP, he's not like other people who work there because he comes a poor background. His family was only able to afford one trip a year — and usually in a rented caravan. His colleagues, on the other hand, seem to be quite privileged, and as such, lack manners and ethics.
He finds his work environment very stressful, constantly dealing with “mannerless” colleagues. To deal with this, he's fond of taking “Irish coffee”, which is just regular coffee but with a shot of vodka. He mostly does this to cool his nerves when he has important meetings. OP says it makes his work more bearable, especially the part where he has to face his co-workers.
Liquor Courage and a Big Mistake
Around 2pm on a Friday, he was having his afternoon coffee when one of his colleagues (40s-50sF) approached his desk and started ranting about some overdue report. The minute he opened his mouth to respond, she grimaced and contorted her face as if she had smelled something rotten. She went away, and he brushed it off and went back to work.
That was not the end, though. About five minutes later, he got a message from the colleague, asking him why his breath stunk of alcohol. OP reports that thanks to his Irish coffee, he had the courage to send a witty response.
The colleague took a screenshot of the message and started threatening to send it to the HR department.
He had to get on his knees to beg her not to. Eventually, she said said she would “think about it.”
“At first I thought she was the a–hole, but I’ve been doing a lot reflecting this weekend and I’m starting to wonder whether I could have handled it a bit better?” OP says.
“You Have a Drinking Problem,” Reddit Says. “And YTA.”
u/killerbekilled92 shares their opinion:
“YTA. Regardless of how you feel about your coworkers, drinking in the office is highly unprofessional. And instead of being smart and playing dumb your liquid courage turned into liquid stupidity and you admitted you were drinking. ‘Why does your breath smell like alcohol?' ‘I drink because of you' is pretty cut and dry and if she goes to HR you could be fired. If the alcohol gave you the idea to give a colleague in a competitive field such huge ammo against you I can’t imagine how much damage you could due to the business.”
Another person adds,
“Imagine being the stinky office drunk and complaining about your younger coworkers’ ethics and manners.
(Note – for those of you that don’t know, if you can’t get through a day at your job without taking ~cute lil secret shots~, you don’t deserve your position at that company).
YTA my guy”
u/Spineberry suggests if the job is turning him into an alcoholic, he should quit:
“YTA for drinking while on shift. Pretty sure in most working environments it's grounds for dismissal – imbibing alcohol or drugs while on work premises
If you're struggling with the stresses of your job that much then dust up your resume and find something else. You're not doing yourself any favors by working a job that makes you so miserable that you're turning to alcohol, and you're probably becoming a hindrance to other members of staff as well without realizing it.”
Bad or stinking breath can be a sensitive area to approach, especially when you're not close to the person on a personal level. There are ways to approach the topic and there are ways to react. Here, who do you think was wrong?
Read the main story here.
This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
Boloere Seibidor, fondly called B.S. is a Nigerian-based writer and poet. Her favorite topics to cover include music, especially Hip-Hop, film, lifestyle, and fashion. She's been published by Feral Journal, Fantasy Magazine, The Temz Review, and most notably, Wealth of Geeks. She enjoys romantic dinners, movie nights, and touring new sites. When she's not writing, she's delving back in time to the underground world of Hip-Hop, watching TikTok, or visiting the cinema.