I am an Athenian, and I [have worked] in a [nearby] medical office for about six years. I love my job and dearly love all of our clients. Our office was deemed “essential,” so we worked all through the pandemic. It has come to my attention that my boss, the doctor, treated patients while she knowingly had COVID. She told me this in confidence about six months ago, although the incident probably happened well over a year ago. She didn’t specify a time frame, and I didn’t ask. She said that she didn’t want to have to deal with closing the office and the loss of income.
I have two children and need this job. Like I said, I enjoy the work and have become close to the clients over the years. But I am having a really hard time pretending that this is OK. It makes me physically sick to my stomach every time I think about it, and I think about it a lot. I don’t know what to do. I don’t want to leave my job, but I am not sure how much longer I can go to work and pretend that this didn’t happen and pretend that I am OK with this. My boss is very beloved in the community and does so much good. She always goes the extra mile for her patients, and she works constantly to give them her all.
I was doing fairly well dealing with this until she did something else a little unconscionable. She is single and had met a guy online who lived north of Athens. They set up an in-person date, and she asked if she could use my house as home base, as Athens was a halfway point for both of them. I of course agreed and told her she was welcome to stay the night so she didn’t have to drive home in the dark. Well, she came home extremely drunk at 12:30 a.m. and brought the guy home with her. They both stayed the night while my 13-year-old daughter was in the room next door. Our house is not even 1,500 square feet. I was so shocked I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t want to kick him out and risk him driving home drunk. So I texted her to please make sure he left early the next morning before my daughter woke up. I was so angry I didn’t sleep the entire night. The next morning she texted me and thanked me for the hospitality and said sorry she made me mad. She didn’t apologize for what she did, only said she was sorry that I was angry. The next day at work she acted like nothing happened, and that is where we are currently. The latter event brought up the former event, and I am really struggling mentally with all of this. Any suggestions?
I get the strong feeling that you see the writing on the wall as plainly as I do, and that you know exactly what you need to do. I’m sure that the community contact and good reputation of your workplace is strong encouragement for toughing your way through a less-than-ideal job environment. I’m not going to give you advice on how to rationalize your boss’ terrible behavior, because no one should have to put up with shit like that. I don’t even have kids, but that “date night” story makes me want to vomit. Ice that horrible cake with her treating patients while COVID-positive, and I want to throw this entire person in the trash.
It’s up to you if you want to report her to the Georgia Composite Medical Board for working while sick and contagious, but I certainly don’t think you have to put up with her crap. It’s a job hunter’s market right now, and you should take full advantage of that. You may even be able to find work closer to Athens and shorten your daily commute to minutes. You have options, and her business isn’t going to sink just because you leave. Your boss’ feelings are not more important than your health or your family’s safety. Freshen up that resume, and start looking.
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