Have you ever wanted to just SCREAM.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 17, 2007 3:05 AM GMT
    Have you ever just wanted to SCREAM?

    Depressed. Embarrassed. Tired.

    I was working on a contract all week at the invitation of a company here in Europe. Several companies were invited to meet together as a group with the purchaser. I thought we had a good lead on getting the contract; we were certainly the most professional and together of several presentations. We seemed most in synch with what the purchaser wanted. We would have been very competitive.

    The other participant/attendees are meeting with the corporate executives this weekend at a Chateau just outside Paris. We will not be there.

    Overheard: “They are obviously good, but they’re not really the kind of people we want to deal with are they? Damn faggots are everywhere .” The person he was talking to just said "Shhh, they'll hear you."

    No matter that we are among the best in our field. No matter that we have a spotless reputation. It doesn’t matter that the vast majority of my employees are straight.

    You can work for years, work your way up until there is little that isn’t available to you. Maybe some society types and evangelical homophobes might look down on gays, but most don’t actively pursue oppression. My partner and I are both career Army vets, we go to church, we are sought after for charitable endeavors, we are supposedly respectable members of the community.

    You start telling yourself that it is who you are, that you are no different from anyone else. You begin to think it’s not that bad; it’s just who you are.

    Eventually you come out and try to live your life openly and honestly with the people you care about. Most people don’t care. You start to feel safe, accepted. You don’t hide at all anymore. It’s Ok.

    And then every once in a while you run into someone for whom you don’t exist as a person.


    It feels like you've been slapped. You feel that little twist in the pit of your stomach.

    And suddenly you don’t feel so Ok for the rest of the day.

    And I can't even tell my partner, because he had a rough week, and I don't want him upset; and he is studying hard for an important paper he is trying to write for one of his profs.

    I think I will tell it to another glass of Black Bush.
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    Nov 17, 2007 3:22 AM GMT
    Damn dude, I'm so sorry to hear that. Keep your chin up and keep on being the best you can be anyways. Hope you feel better...icon_smile.gif
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    Nov 17, 2007 3:32 AM GMT
    Yeah, I've had days like that. Too many to want to even try and count. Not from being called a faggot but for other reasons.

    Hang in there. I know it is tough.

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16944

    Nov 17, 2007 6:56 AM GMT
    Thats amazing and I'm totally with you. Somehow I'd try and get to the point (if possible) that you observe that perhaps you wouldn't want the contract from people that have that viewpoint.

    I'd probably have the thought of some "unprofessional behavior" as well with those people (in the back of my mind) I'm sure your reputation is excellent. Get on with the next contract.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Nov 17, 2007 12:47 PM GMT
    In the corporate world and in any place where there is competition there's going to be mainly men who pull the homophobe card to try to place others in an inferior position...it's a powerplay my man
    and now it's become unacceptable to use it

    my suggestion to you is use that proper PC power you have and let it slip that you heard that little conversation from "someone" and name names

    always use what you got and put them on the defensive for a chance
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    Nov 17, 2007 2:32 PM GMT
    that really shits me.
    after all you've done, someone just dismisses all your work in one sentence. i'm quiet timid in general though when it comes to people who take cheap shots because they have some inferiority complex i call them on it if i hear it. let them know that you will not stand to be demeaned and it's not about putting people in their place, in this situation it's about having the professionalism to remove personal views from the workplace (one of the issues anyway). the fact that he did that is unprofessional and petty. way out of line.

    personal digs cut through the toughest skin especially when you least expect them. the shit days are always the longest but you leave them behind so chin up matey, their negative thoughts will bring them the same back to them one way or another.
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    Nov 17, 2007 2:40 PM GMT
    What goes around, comes around. That company is doing itself a disservice if it is settling for a lesser vendor based on a criterion that has nothing to do with performance. Therefore, they will get a lesser product. They will have to live with the lesser product and all its defects.

    I was thinking that you might want to let the CEO of the company know what you overheard. But that might come across as sour grapes. Behave to maintain the good name of your company in the industry. And just know that those bigots in the company will get their just deserts when they have to explain the lesser product to the CEO and stockholders.
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    Nov 17, 2007 4:23 PM GMT
    I'm sorry to hear your story. My policy over the years has been not to do business with ny person who attacks me personally including being gay. I have lost clients a few times, but life is too short to put up with bigots. If these people are so small minded now they will most likley cause problems down the road for you
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    Nov 17, 2007 4:31 PM GMT
    What a terrible story what it really does show you how far there is to go on equality for all people. I'm very niave when it comes to beliving that people still have so far to come, but every now and then I see it and I'm just blown away.

    I think the real question is do "YOU" want to work for or with someone like "them"?

    But if you decide that you do, give it your best, be as kind and professional as possible, and at the end of the day when they are blown away at what an amazing job you did.... Look at the men and smile, reach out your hand and say, "Not too bad for a bunch of faggots, right?" And then thank them for giving you the opportunity.

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    Nov 17, 2007 10:36 PM GMT
    That sucks big time. How on Earth do they know you're gay? Where in Europe is this? Did they at least cover your expenses for the trip over?
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    Nov 18, 2007 2:42 AM GMT
    McGay wrote: "That sucks big time. How on Earth do they know you're gay? Where in Europe is this? Did they at least cover your expenses for the trip over?"

    - I don't hide it. I have spoken to many people about my partner when asked. I had shown a member of their team a picture of myself and my partner this past summer on L Champlain, when he visited my office in London. Many people know - and we do a lot of work in Eastern Europe - including for other Gazprom subsidiaries. Who really knows how?

    Russia is a very homophobic society.

    - The confrerences were just outside Paris, the contract was in Russia for the SPC Podzemgidromineral subsidiary of JSC Gazprom.

    The final meetings and contract signings were supposed to be in Russia next month.

    - No, but that is not unusual during an initial invitation to bid.
  • ScotXY

    Posts: 117

    Nov 18, 2007 2:50 AM GMT
    I hear you. I have been in IT field from desktop support to server support to tier 3 helpdesk and exchange admin.

    On various sites i have heard it and it just make me pissed me off. 90% time I would just have to stomach it and keep on going. Sometimes I was able to talk to people. At lunch or friends so forth.

    Only twice have I been bale to speak up about it. Once back home in colorado when I worked for Compaq.

    2nd time at my current employer 1 sysble computer maker in nashville.

    Both time it was nice to have the people wake up and smell the coffee. Like you never really know who is around further what you say can be smack in face.

    It was the nice 2 times out of so many I could stand up and say what was on my mind after hearing somone say faggot around me.

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    Nov 18, 2007 2:52 AM GMT
    IT, for what it's worth, I am in a business where I have a great many clients, and they learn from me in fairly short order that I am gay. If they have a problem with that, I don't want their business, and not for highfalutin' moral reasons. It is my experience that if someone has a problem with you personally (at least in the litigious U.S.), he will find some OTHER reason to give you problems down the road. You can't go to court and say "my financial advisor is a homo, your honor", but you can say "my financial advisor over-traded my account" when what you really mean is "and he's a dirty faggot, by the way." So I don't want their business. And since I don't, I find a casual way to let them know who I am when I pitch for their business in the first place.
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    Nov 18, 2007 5:27 AM GMT
    It's not the first time someone has been an asshole. It certainly won't be the last.

    I have heard a lot worse.

    It's just that sometimes people, ignorant people, telling you what you can and can't do/be because you're gay...

    Every once in a while it hits you when you are not expecting it.

    A little knife twisting in your gut.

    It's ridiculous to say that it doesn't change your life, that sometimes it limits you.

    And despite knowing better, you have to sometimes wonder if it doesn't affect how you think too.

    It just twists things.

    We have come a long way in my lifetime, but not nearly far enough yet.
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    Nov 18, 2007 5:26 PM GMT
    Absolutely horrendous stuff, but given the abominable state of Russia at the moment, I think you are far better off *not* doing business with them.
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    Nov 18, 2007 5:42 PM GMT
    Whenever possible I just drop a simple, curt, "Watch your mouth." and leave it at that.

    If I'm really feeling confrontational, I'll say something like "Wow, I haven't heard talk like that since I was in the 7th grade."

    The third option is to stare to the point of discomfort on the part of the prick who said it.

    ...not that any of this would have helped you in your situation. I can only hope his colleagues gave him a little more shit over it, but I doubt it.
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    Nov 18, 2007 5:58 PM GMT
    Man, that's awful. I'm really sorry that happened to you.

    A teaching I heard once that I find impossible to truly "do" but has been an incredibly powerful mental shift is this:

    People who do that kind of thing are suffering themselves. You can't hold onto that kind of hate and disdain otherwise. Maybe the guy's gay and repressing it, or maybe it's really indirect -- his sense of smug self-assurance causes him pain every time he is confronted with a situation he cannot control or fix. Or something. But when you reflect on it, it seems clear that he is paying a price for that quality of mind.

    Furthermore, as others have said, this kind of shit happens. That doesn't trivialize your experience, it's not like "Oh, buck up, stop feeling sorry for yourself." Quite the opposite -- you're right to feel wounded, and then you struggle through it, learn resilience and compassion.

    Not only, then, are difficult people our best teachers, but we owe them a debt of gratitude, because they suffer so that we may learn important lessons.

    I know it sounds kind of corny and it's often hard for me to hold onto (i.e. empathize with the other guy and send gratitude towards him instead of hoping he'd fall off a tall building) but for me, it whittles away over time. Every time I try to do that instead of hating the other guy, things get a little bit brighter.

    I only post that because maybe it could be useful to others. It's been really useful to me.

    I'm really sorry for your pain. Those experiences are so difficult.
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    Nov 19, 2007 9:21 PM GMT
    I have been there. It really sucks. I am sorry ITJock. icon_sad.gif Mean people suck. All you can do is keep doing what you do, as best you can. Have yourself some Black Bush, and curl up next to your man. Allow him the opportunity to make you feel good.