How Do You Answer This One? Ladies Room Beat Down.

Jp Enlarged

12-22-13   A day later.  Honestly, I wondered if someone was playing with me.  A good story true or not.  In my mind’s eye, this pharmacist looks like Abby Wambach.  A tall, strong woman of the Wonder Woman template.  I will follow up and if she relates how this goes, I will share it with you.

Okay. I get at least a half dozen E-mails every week from pharmacists who want to share their story, but insist on remaining anonymous.  I usually quickly reply with a “Thanks for the message” or “You don’t have to put up with that” or “At least stand up for yourself”.  Occasionally, when the company is so close to being illegal, I give advice.  Then, I get something like this.  What do I say to her?

Dear Mr. Plagakis

I never write my complaints, but this really bothered me.  Should I quit my job?  I had to use the bath room after being on duty for four hours.  I take HCTZ because I am a tightly wound woman and my BP tends to run high.  I worked hard from 8 until noon and couldn’t hold it anymore.  The technician got upset with me  because we had people waiting.  She is a very take charge tech and seems to think that making the metrics is her first job.  We had already filled about 200 Rx and I needed to go, so I went without one more word.  I did not hurry because this might be the only chance to get a break is what I was thinking.  I washed my hands, threw water on my face and brushed my teeth quickly after I used the toilet stall.  I put a handful of water on my head and massaged.  Not a problem since I wear my hair short.  I arranged my clothes, even pulling my underpants up tight.  I buttoned my blouse and was just puttimg on my white jacket when I heard a voice.  

“So this is what you do when you have 20 prescriptions on the counter to be checked.”

I actually jerked I was so shocked.  A female assistant manager was standing in the door of the farthest toilet stall.  ”Have you been watching me?  Have you been there all this time?”  I stepped toward her.  She stepped back.  I am no wilting violet.  I was on the field hockey team in college.  Title IX taught me that it is okay for a woman to be physically strong.  ”How dare you spy on me.”  I pulled the stall door open and demanded that she get out.

“I’m just doing what I was told to do.”

“Who told you?”


Phil is the store manager.  I grabbed her arm.  ”If  you try this again, I will……..”  I didn’t know how to end that.

“Phil is the store manager”, Brenda said like Phil was Jesus Christ.  ”Let go of me.  You are hurting me.”

With a clear head, I know that I should have just gone back to the pharmacy, but I didn’t.  I squeezed her arm and twisted and I loved that she sat down on the floor, actually plopped down on her butt, pretty hard.   “Spying on me in the bathroom has got to be against OSHA.”

“You always take too long and Phil wanted to know why.  I didn’t do anything wrong.”  She struggled, but I just squeezed tighter.  ”Let go of me, you.. you dyke.”

That did it.  I like men.  Okay?  I enjoy being big and strong.  When men talk with me at the club, they are always respectful.  I am NOT a lesbo.  I lost control and slapped her.  She started to cry and I slapped her again.  You know, a simple bitch slap.   I didn’t want to hurt her really just embarass her.   When I let go of her arm, she ran out of the women’s room and I could hear her screaming down the hall.  I looked in the mirror, took a deep breath and said to  myself,  ”What did you just do?”

I went up to Phil’s office then and demanded that he apologize.  He laughed.  I didn’t expect anything else, but I wanted to be proactive.   Now I am waiting.  I have  the weekend off and not one word.   I don’t know what to do.   If I get fired over this, I am going to catch Brenda somewhere and scare the crap out of her.  I don’t think I will beat her up, but she is going to think that is what is coming.   Maybe, I will beat up Phil.  He is a punk night school tough guy who brags about his flag football days.  I have two inches on him and probably 20 pounds.  

Thinking like this makes me worry that I really am a lesbian.  Do straight women ever think like this?  Please help me JP.  I have been worrying all weekend.  

I do not know what to tell her.  I did advise her to watch this spot.  You guys might be able to help her out.  




  1. Crazy RxMan  •  Dec 21, 2013 @12:46 pm

    You’ll probably be fired but you’re not a lesbian. You’re just tired of the jerks you work for and I don’t blame you.

  2. pharmaciststeve  •  Dec 21, 2013 @12:50 pm

    This woman is right about the OSHA violation.. employer can’t interfere, prohibit an employee from using the bathroom when they need to do it

    However, is Phil/Brenda creating a hostile work environment?

    Is this RPH guilty of assault and battery?

    Two wrongs don’t make a “RIGHT”..

    It will be interesting how this plays out.. I suspect that corp will back Phil/Brenda and go after this RPH..

    This RPH is probably needing to contact an attorney… have a game plan in case corp comes after her.
    this issue could shake out in a number of ways..

    Under such situations.. it is best to keep a level head.. not even raise your voice or your hand.

    Staying calm.. will often make the other person get so frustrated …because you are not dropping down to their level.. most likely.. will wind them up that much more… and hopefully they will do something real stupid.. then you have them where you really need/want them..

  3. Peon  •  Dec 21, 2013 @6:01 pm

    I think Steve pretty well summed up this situation. I recently had an encounter with a female pharmacist where she was screaming at me. I never raised my voice. The incident went to the DM. She was the one that looked stupid over the incident. The same thing applies to obnoxious customers. If you get mad and say unkind things to them, you only make the situation worse. Ever try just ignoring them? Want to really make them mad? Just ignore them when the talk.

  4. Cathy Lane RPh  •  Dec 21, 2013 @8:33 pm

    I once told an assistant manager that if I ever heard her talk to me like I heard her talk about a co-worker, that I would pinch her like a little girl in a place that was not obviously noticeable to anyone else. It was a warning, and I wouldn’t have done it.

    Obviously the writer was faced with a situation in which she had to act fast, and instinctively.

    Definitely the ‘spy’ is creating a hostile work situation which is interfering with professional pharmacist duty. I mean, just how does one go back to authorizing scripts after that sort of encounter?

    Plus, the store manager shouldn’t have any say over the pharmacist job, either.

    Together, with the ‘spy’ their ‘intimidation’ would be enough for anyone to make a mistake in this highly stressful job. I say, get ‘em outa there. They don’t need to be interfering with the work of the pharmacist. Because, if the spy and store supervisor stay, the pharmacist will have to go, with trojan techs like that.

    Would someone allow a school secretary to bother a classroom instructor like that? Do airline pilots allow anyone to interfere with their work while on-the-job? Would someone allow a hospital supervisor in the O.R. to interrupt a surgeon?

    Unless there is more to this story than taking advantage of 15 min. allowed by law, it sounds as if the pharmacist has got to get a lawyer.

  5. AJ  •  Dec 21, 2013 @8:43 pm

    I think its funny she’s more worried about being a lesbian than being fired for violating the companies work place violence policy.

  6. MSDEMEANOR  •  Dec 21, 2013 @10:46 pm

    That woman should be canned and jailed. There is no excuse for slapping
    anyone who is not physically threatening you. She seems fucked up and in need of a shrink.

  7. wellilbe  •  Dec 21, 2013 @10:51 pm

    Jim, this is what I would call MADE UP DRAMA (MUD). Someone’s just having fun with you

  8. prickly pharmacist  •  Dec 22, 2013 @7:18 am

    I agree with wellilbe, this doesn’t sound real. These large companies take “violence in the workplace” very seriously. If she has any other kinds of complaints against her she will be fired. Start looking for another job.

  9. Anonymous  •  Dec 23, 2013 @9:03 pm

    This is a bizarre story. If it is true, this pharmacist needs to run to a qualified mental health practitioner. She has some serious issues. You can’t hit other employees just because they are acting like morons! Take the high road.

  10. Goose  •  Dec 26, 2013 @11:21 am

    First of all, when you strike someone, you have probably lost any leverage you might have had from a harassment standpoint so we are basically talking damage control here.
    Don’t sign anything, don’t admit to anything and if you are fired just walk out.
    This was a setup, pure and simple if it was real.
    Again, I can tell you from experience, large employers take violence and threats very seriously. You cannot even joke about it.
    Also, it doesn’t solve a problem by any stretch of the imagination and is one of those things that will follow you around for a long time.
    In this job market, no one can afford that.

  11. bcmigal  •  Dec 26, 2013 @7:51 pm

    Sounds like MUD to me, too. I had a pharmacist who “accidentally” shoved me and she was fired within a week.

  12. pharmacyslave2000  •  Dec 26, 2013 @9:01 pm

    Come on JP. You can’t be taking this seriously. This sounds like some homo-erotic letter to Penthouse.

  13. RXMomma  •  Dec 26, 2013 @11:13 pm

    This does sound made up. Why tells us about the positioning of your underpants? If you got physical with another employee you will no doubt be the recipient of discipline up to and possibly including termination. Brenda and Phil did not violate any components of the OSHA regulations. These address occupational safety issues. (Think improper handling of photo lab chemicals) Your best response would have been to say zero to Brenda or Phil. You should have contacted Phil’s boss or your employee relations department and indicated that you feltPhil was creating a hostile work environment. You should have told them your side of the story and had them interview Brenda. Instead you acted irrationally and gave them ammunition. By the way.. I am a lesbian and a pharmacist and I have no desire to beat anyone up so you can relax about your sexuality. Your continued employment and credibilty should be the issues you are worried with.

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