Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Stress from little old ladies! (Or "They're not as sweet as they look!")

Well, I'm not sure if I've told you that DH's place where he is the maintenance guy is a senior apartment building...anyhow, it is. And all along he's been telling me how much he likes all the old people who live there, they're so nice!!!

But today, I guess, one of the little old ladies decided to clean out the trash can outside the front door: "This is your job, you know. You're supposed to clean these out every day." DH explained to her that he was only allowed to do work if a work order was filled out and he did not have anything that said that he was supposed to clean the garbage cans. The next thing he knows, his "boss" is calling him down, not to yell at him, but to tell him that a) he does not have to clean the garbage cans unless it is on a work order and b) there was also a complaint that he didn't vaccuum the hallways, and he didn't have to do that either. So, DH went on his merry way.

He then received another summons from his boss: "We got a complaint that you haven't finished rebuilding the air exchanger yet." DH: "Well, no, I thought it would be better if I fixed this leaky faucet and the latch on that window first, since the air exchanger will take a long time." DH's boss: "I know, I just figured I'd better tell you."

Then he was reinforcing a railing outside the building when that same little old lady and a friend walked up to him and said, "When it's winter, are you going to sweep the snow off our windshields? Because the other guy always did." DH went to his boss and found out that the other guy did NOT sweep the snow from windshields, and, in fact, was informed that it was not part of his job.

Then, as DH was finishing up on the railing, his boss walked by and whispered "makes you want to loosen a couple bolts on those, doesn't it?"

No kidding.

You would think that being a maintenance man for a senior apartment building would be void of stressors like this, anyhow....yikes!!!! No wonder he comes home all worn out!!!

On a slightly similar but different note, DH and I had a long talk last night about the fact that it seems like all of this working is not helping his mental health. He agreed with me, and said that he's been more depressed since he's started working. I dared to think out loud about the possibility that full-time work might be too much right now. He didn't answer me. I told him that I'd rather have my DH back and healthy than have my DH working but "out-of-whack". I also told him that if he kept working and getting more depressed that he might end up back in the hospital. He told me, "I can't quit, you're counting on this money." I told him that we've lived without it for quite a while, we would be ok without it. He didn't agree. I also told him that this job brings with it a lot of other types of stress--i.e., he has to carry his own liability insurance, etc., and he agreed. I told him that this job wasn't what I had expected, and he said it wasn't what he expected to be doing either....but after all that, nothing was really resolved except I was able to voice some of my thoughts....and "That Guy" didn't show up....


perphila said...

First off let me put out there, your situation is different than mine.....like duh right? :) So with that said let me tell you my knee jerk reaction. I haven't really thought about it this is just my thoughts as I was reading."Oh my god don't tell him it's ok to quit that job." I didn't even think about the money factor either. I know the one of the worst mistakes I made was letting my husband quit his job. It kept him focused even though he was unhappy with the job. He had been for years but now I look back and see it was more than the job that was depressing him. The job was one if his rational explainations for his depression. The job though despite his unhappiness with it kept him around people. It kept him in a routine. It gave him some measure of self worth knowing he was taking care of his family. Once he quit he began the reckless spending. The sleeping off and on all day. You know the drill I am sure. I am now dealing with the guilt of knowing I helped him make it ok to quit the job. I was so desperate for him to be happy I thought even though things might be hard it would be ok. I was scared but at the time I thought I was helping him. I thought I was supporting him. I didn't understand how important a job was to his mental health not just our finances. What I did was enable the mental illness instead. Maybe a full time job isn't what's best. Maybe a part-time job would be better. Any job though even steady volunteering would be good. For my husband nothing else but his old job would have helped. After he quit he did two part time jobs but I did almost all the work in one and the other job he met his current mistress. Yuck.

Pann said...

wow, but his boss sounds like a really understanding guy.

Maybe DH can just "smile and nod" when residents ask him stuff, or just say "I'll be sure to tell that to my boss so he knows what you are asking for" and then just avoid the conflict.

It really sounds like it is a hard thing for him. Maybe he could work less hours?