I feel so bad about myself today.

I get shit on all the time and I don’t know why.

I have volunteered with my son’s youth group for 5 years now. First as the fundraising chairperson. Things went bad with that unit and last summer, the man who was second in command, started another unit. Me and many other parents were very happy that our children would still be able to be in the program without having to deal with the old leaders.

The new CO asked me to join his staff as an instructor. This is also a volunteer position. I was happy to do it. At our first staff meeting, he explained the roles of everyone in the staff. He also explained the rules that the staff was supposed to follow and that the children were supposed to follow. No problem. He also asked me to built a website for the unit. I did and he was very pleased with it.

At this time, our unit had no funds. Until the unit began fundraising, I purchased all of the teaching materials myself. I never asked to be reimbursed. The kids went rock climbing, and to Washington D.C. all of this cost money, so we really didn’t have any left to reimburse me. That was OK with me, all the kids were learning and I enjoyed teaching them.

Over the past few months, things in the unit were declining. The kids would come to me with ideas they had and I told them that I would discuss in with our CO. As this was happening the CO became more and more difficult to work with. He would tell me to plan classes and keep him informed as to what dates and subjects we would be teaching. I did this, I printed a calendar and gave him and all the parents and staff copies of it.

He would then go around and complain to the staff that I was not keeping him informed. Every week, I gave him another copy of the calendar and asked his approval on it. He would say OK, then repeat the cycle all over again the next week. I asked him if there was anything else I could do to keep him informed and he told me to put it all down on paper, which I was doing !

Additionally, there were a good number of parents coming to me because they felt favoritisim was going on. There was. Certain kids would be punished for not being in uniform while others were not. Some of the kids were being allowed to goof off in ranks other were not. The parents came to me, because that was one of my duties, to act as a liasion between the parents and the staff.

The staff was not happy with our CO either. While he wasn’t listening, they would complain about a lack of communication that would result in a lot of confusion, with everyone else taking the blame.

At the next staff meeting, CO asked if we had anything that we wanted to dicuss. I said that I would like to discuss some things that the parents and children had brought to me. As respectfully as I could, I explained some of the ideas the kids had and how some of the parents were seeing favoritism and I suggested a few possible ideas to fix some of the things going on.

It was right after that, that the CO started telling me that I had no idea what was going on, because I had missed 2 staff meetings. I had made it to the meetings with the kids, but since my car had broken down, I did indeed miss 2 of the staff meetings. However, I always called the CO the next morning to find out what I missed. He said that wasn’t good enough, it would be different if my husband were there to tell me what I missed. I don’t know why that is, my husband is not a staff member and he never was. Before I could ask what my husband had to do with anything, CO said that I was not following orders and I was being disrespectful. I began to ask what I did, because I was really confused. He cut me off and demanded that I resign from staff. I told him that I would not resign becasue I don’t know what I did wrong. He said “Fine, you are relieved from duty. The staff serves at the will of the CO and you are no longer wanted.”

I just left, very confused. I was not alone, two of the other staff members walked out with me and told the CO that what he did was bullshit. They have been told to leave too.

Last week, the CO sents me an email telling me to remove the website. I replied that I would remove the pages that needed to be updated, but my sons wanted the other pages kept there. Those pages had pictures of some of the trips and events the kids had participated in on them. Or I offered to turn the website over to him, so that he could keep it updated if he prefered.

He replied in big capital letters that I must remove the website and he wanted the date and time that I did so. I removed the whole thing and told him the date and time I did it.

This morning, I got a very nasty email from him. He said, THIS IS THE LAST, TAKE THE WEBSITE DOWN. YOU WILL NOT BE TOLD AGAIN. AND YOU WILL BE SORRY IF YOU DON’T.

I have no clue what the hell he’s talking about. I deleted the enitre thing. If you go to that web address you get a page telling you that it does not exist.

I replied to him telling him that I did remove it, I sent him a link to the page so he can check himself and I told him not to speak to me in that manner any longer, I am no longer staff and I do not have to follow orders and don’t threaten me again.


I worked my ass off for five years with this organization, many time doing most of the work along because no one else wanted to do it. I made myself sick, I lost 18 lbs due to the stress of this. Why am I being treated like shit?

I feel so low right now. I don’t understand what I did so wrong. I feel like I can never do anything right.

Geez, dragon, that sucks! This guy sounds like kind of a fruit loop. I mean:

“You’ll be sorry”?? What is he, 35 going on 14? Sounds like someone never made it out of the high school mentality.

I hope it works out, though. Let us know. :slight_smile:

Wow. <hug>

On the contrary dragongirl I’d say you did Everything right and it’s that jerk CO who is doing everything wrong.

I know it can be tough to not listen to others opinion of us and we usually want to assume that what they say about us is true (especially if it is critical, because who knows better than us what our faults are). But in this case, you need to listen to your head, not your heart. Tell yourself that you did no wrong, and all the attacks coming from him are his own weakness and insecurities (probably about himself) that he is throwing at you instead.

I applaud your efforts and sacrifice on behalf of your son, and the youth group. Don’t let the good you’ve done be overshadowed by the irrational actions of one bad apple (even if he is the CO).

dragongirl it sounds like you have done all that the CO asked of you and more. I once had to work with someone like this. He even went so far as to tell me that the project I was doing (my Eagle scout project) wasn’t good enough, and that I couldn’t do it. My revenge consisted of personally inviting him to my Egale court of honor.

This CO in nuts, and what he thinks and says doesn’t matter. You don’t have to put up with his shit anymore. Everything you did, you did right.

Sounds like he is jealous of the staff and kids being able to talk to you about problems they perceive with the group, and this asshat is threatened by it. Don’t let his immature antics make you feel bad about yourself - the only thing you did wrong was do a good job.

BTW, is this group sponsored? Who jerks this guy’s chain if it needs to be jerked?

biiiiiiiig hug Hey, Dragongirl, take a deep breath, throw your shoulders back, lift your head proudly and take a look at this from a different perspective. From my analysis of this guys actions I’d say he’s jealous of you, your skills and abilities make him feel incompetent and insecure, and he reacted like a bully in the schoolyard. In my opinion he recognized that you could do his job better than he did it and that brought out the worst in him. The comment about wishing your husband had been around also implies that your former CO is a sexist idiot.

You are obviously an intelligent, competent and well skilled woman and there are always going to be people (men and women, both) who will be jealous of you and work to undermine you in any way they can. DO NOT let them fill you with self-doubt. KNOW how good you are! Embrace those who enjoy your company and appreciate what you are willing to do and leave in your dust those who do not or would only have you around to take advantage of what you would do for them.

OK…I’ll get off my soapbox now. Have a wonderful weekend!


Dragongirl, I hate to see someone going in to the weekend feeling bad. Especially someone who shouldn’t.

You done good, woman. Hold your head high. Snort loudly and disdainfully when anyone mentions this guy in conversation. If you see him in public, don’t bother talking to him except to say “fuck off.” Point him out to children as an example of what NOT to be when they grow up. And remember the good times you helped all those kids have. Build a new website with the pictures your son likes, and if this jerk contacts you again tell him to cease and desist. Keep a record of any contact you have with him from now forward, and if he continues to use language like “or else” call the police and file a complaint. I know in Nevada the use of threats and “fighting words” are criminal acts; it may be true in your state as well.

Now go string up a hammock, lay in the shade, and take a nap or something.


You didn’t do anything wrong. If there’s any lesson you can take from this, maybe it is to make your boundaries a little firmer in the future, so a bully like your former-CO doesn’t trample on you. And I do agree with The Lizard Queen - he does sound like a bully. A normal person would have thanked you for all your effort and appreciated you - he obviously didn’t. It sounds like you couldn’t do anything right for him, no matter what you did. That makes it his problem, not yours.

Maybe it would help to look at it this way - seeing what kind of jerk he is, you wouldn’t want to be the kind of person that he’d want to keep around, would you? Consider it a compliment that he turfed you. A very mean, awful compliment.

We’re sponsored by the Marine Corps League. There are these really stupid chain of command, burecratic hoops I could try to jump through, but that’s not really an option for me. Greviances can only be filed by staff members and since staff members serve at the will of the CO, I’m out of options.

Parents of children in the program can’t file grievances?