where are you now? (a call for updates)

At the end of each year, I publish a slew of “where are they now” updates from people whose questions I answered here in the past. So…

If you’ve had your question answered here in the past, please email me an update and let us know how your situation turned out. Did you take the advice? Did you not take the advice? What happened? Leave no juicy detail out! I’ll post updates as they come in. (Don’t post them here though; email them to me.)

And if there’s anyone you especially want to hear an update from, mention it here and I’ll reach out to those people directly.

Posted in Uncategorized

{ 322 comments… read them below }

  1. Sandra*

    Hi Alison. I would love updates from:

    -the letter about Michelle, the woman who was chameleon-like with her appearance
    -the letter from manager whose employee would not go outside without an umbrella or blanket because of skin cancer
    -the letter about the boss who would not move on in a staff meeting and forced everyone to speak even if they didn’t want to
    -the letter from the manager whose employee didn’t give his boss the message about his police officer wife being injured
    -the letter from the manager whose assistant was constantly looking in the mirror

    Those are the letters I thin about often and would like to see updates on.

    1. Chewy Mints*

      Yes to number 4 on your list! That was Percival… I would love an update on that one too! Is he still working there? Did they manage to fire him?

    2. Foreign Octopus*

      I would LOVE to hear about Percival. If you can get an update for that, I’ll sign you over my firstborn (be it cat, dog, or fish, it’s yours).

    3. JD*

      Oh yes please with a Michelle update. I was amazed at her ability to transform herself while I sit for 3 hours to get my highlights done. ha

    4. Red 5*

      Is Michelle the one who was staring at her co-worker all the time and started to bring in identical lunches and wear similar clothes and was also quietly and creepily taking pictures of the letter writer? Am I confusing three or four letters together? In any instance, I want updates on all of these situations. All the situations. Everything.

      1. Janelle*

        Michelle would go to lunch and come back with a completely different hair color, new outfit, the works.

    5. Comms Girl*

      Yes yes yes – an update on the Percival letter would be great.

      Also,if possible, a new update on the “thank you for your collaboration” married guy who was neighbours with the OP and was having an affair with another girl in the office (Anna). I know we got an update on that with OP’s amazing icily professional email to that jerk, but I would love to know if there have been more developments on that one.

  2. Lady Phoenix*

    I would love another update from the poor woman who had to deal with the fuckass that made Sandy Hook jokes and sexually harassed her. I hope she is in a much better place.

      1. Lady Phoenix*

        It was last year. Dude made your mon jokes, Sandy Hook jokes, consrantly harassed the OP, and had a stupid boss that forced the OP to “manage” fuckass without having any power or management

        1. Interviewer*

          That one did get updated – a couple of times, actually. Use the search box up top at the right – I put in “your mom jokes” and got all the links.

          1. Addison*

            I’m the OP on those! Because I updated so much already, I wasn’t sure if it’d be overkill to send in anything else… especially because that “thrilling conclusion” was apparently just a lull in the action (ugh) and I doubt I’ll have the True End anytime soon. But I don’t mind sending something in if y’all are interested.

              1. Addison*

                There are many changes… even just today. It’s wild. I wrote something up, I’ll send it over this evening!

  3. nnn*

    This isn’t quite an update, but I’d still love to hear Sylvia’s side of the story (the lady whose “ghosting” ex wrote in when she became his boss).

      1. Sabine the Very Mean*

        I’ve been desperate for that one. I really felt s/he might have had the capacity to really recognize the terribleness.

    1. Creag an Tuire*

      I want to hear from the manager who convinced her entire team to resign based on layoffs that didn’t happen.

  4. Daffodil*

    I’d love to get a second update from the lady whose workplace was sponsoring her for a service dog. Has she gotten her dog? How’s it working out? Would she consider sharing a picture?

    1. Amber T*

      I have no idea if its the same or different for everyone, but the update was the first recommended link for this post. I think this may be my favorite AAM letter and update <3

      1. Manuel*

        It was the first recommended link for me, too. I think I missed this one somehow, so thank you all for pointing us to it. Such a wonderful story!

    2. NotThatGardner*

      yes! i would also love a second update on that one. i just read again and im definitely not crying at my desk right now.

  5. Sherm*

    Honestly, it’s great to hear from them all, even the not-so-exciting letters (e.g., “Is it okay to use semicolons in a resume?”), as it’s always food for thought to learn how situations played out.

    Having said that, I’m curious what happened to the workplace where an employee had OCD and couldn’t stand asymmetry, so the company forbade asymmetric dress, including wedding rings, and made people wait male-female-male-female at the bus stop.

    1. Hills to Die on*

      Such a great one for an update!

      Also, if you are the OP whose boss wanted you to donate part of your liver to his brother (post is from a few years back), PLEASE send your update!

    2. Manders*

      Oh yes, I was so curious about that one! It seemed like that workplace was one awkward situation (discriminating against an amputee, hiring a nonbinary employee who can’t follow the bus stop rule, etc) away from a total meltdown.

        1. Ladycrim*

          Wow, I missed that one originally. That is so over-the-top! If HR had an issue with my wedding ring making me ‘asymmetrical,’ I’d tell them they were welcome to buy me a matching one for my right hand.

  6. Blue Eagle*

    Here are my top two:
    The letter about the woman whose domestically abused co-worker forged documents to indicate that she embezzled money. Did she ever come back to the company? What of the domestically abused co-worker whose husband was fired – what happened to her?

    Did anyone ever hear any more from the woman whose co-worker pushed her into a car in order to avoid a bird and she broke her arm? Any repercussions for the co-worker who pushed her?

    1. TootsNYC*

      Oh, that abuse victim….
      I’ve been thinking of her often lately. I’ve been reading Lundy Bancroft’s book about the psychology of abusive men. So scary!

      1. animaniactoo*

        Yeah, I’d like an update to that update. The company seemed to have a lot of misunderstanding about risk assessment and what they (the company) ethically and morally owed Liz having put her in a position where she was significantly injured on company time on a company task and by a coworker.

    2. Temperance*

      I think about poor Mary often. I hope she is doing well, and that some serious, serious life restitution was made to that poor lady.

    3. Jenny*

      Whoa, what’s the letter about ” the woman whose domestically abused co-worker forged documents to indicate that she embezzled money” – I don’t remember it and can’t find it in the search!

    4. Amy*

      I would also love an update on the false fraud investigation/domestic abuse situation. I think about that often.

    1. Cassie*

      Yes! That was one of the best irony letters in a while. Commenters were blasting the guy for lacking attention to detail, and asking how someone could not realize needing a passport meant something was wrong…all the while having assumed this occured in the U.S. despite the LW explicitly mentioning it was in Canada.

      1. paul*

        TBF, we weren’t performing work functions here ;)

        I feel bad for the OP there but I can definitely understand firing them

    2. D.W.*

      Oh yes! This one, please. I hope they were able to bounce back as well.

      Awful mistake, but still a mistake.

    3. Ladycrim*

      Wow, a sitcom come to life! I hope the boss at least tried to enjoy their unexpected Italian vacation…

  7. Detective Amy Santiago*

    I love updates!!!

    Here are some that I’d like –
    — my coworker is pregnant with my boss’s baby
    — fired for trick or treating in a meeting
    — the girlfriend being a mean boss
    — the boss doing the coworker’s laundry
    — the coworker who brought her boyfriend to work
    — the “obviously pregnant” coworker
    — the husband who didn’t want his wife to go on a trip to Vegas
    — the office that makes them cook & eat lunch together every day
    — the coworker who kept asking his wife for input
    — the sharing a hotel room with a coworker who screams

    1. NotThatGardner*

      i think about the screaming coworker in a hotel room letter often, i would love an update on that!

      1. Detective Amy Santiago*

        That one was just bizarre.

        Mostly I like the ones with the potential for messy interpersonal drama.

    2. K.*

      My coworker’s fiancé has been coming to work with her for the past two weeks. They’re in a long-distance relationship and he’s in town. No one else seems to find this odd, so I just let it go (I’m not her boss).

      1. attie*

        Two whole weeks? I’ve done that, but only for single half-days. (And one time in protest when my boyfriend’s boss made him come in the day after christmas, despite having booked vacation, to help a struggling colleague. Halfway through this ‘incredibly urgent’ side project, the colleague decided he didn’t like what boyfriend was doing and the whole thing landed in the trash. Whee. At least we could go home at that point.)

      2. tink*

        I did this when my partner and I were LDR and I’d make the trip to visit, but I don’t think I was ever around more than an hour or two? I could maybe see a day or two (arriving/leaving) if there was weirdness with travel (delays, only one trip out of town on whatever transit, etc.), but otherwise stay at home.

    3. Hey Karma, Over Here*

      Coworker who asks his wife for input reminds me of coworker who CC’d his mom. Need an update!

    4. Polaris*

      Didn’t we get an update on Vegas co-worker? Was that the one where she and the husband were super religious and she ended up quitting because he wanted her to stay at home?

      1. NaoNao*

        No that was the “queens don’t drive” woman whose husband was lurking and glowering in the parking lot waiting for her to get off work.
        She wound up ratcheting up the drama and demands and then quitting.

  8. TootsNYC*

    Dear Letter Writers:

    Please do send in an update–I love reading them.
    There are always interesting insights from those who update–things they learned that are valuable to hear, or even just the encouragement of seeing how they coped (and THAT they coped).

    And, I find that I do worry about each of you a little bit; you’re real to me, and I am hoping good things for you. (Even if you’re one of the people who screwed up–I still wish good things for you, and am hoping that you will find a way to move forward in strength and beauty.)

    1. beanie beans*

      Yes, even just the minor ones like dealing with appropriate boundaries and dealing with awkward situations – they are encouraging that change is possible!

    2. kittymommy*

      I wrote in about 2-3 years ago with a question. Pretty mild one so I never updated, but it is nice to hear that even the boring ones matter!!

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        I love hearing updates even from the “boring” letters (perhaps “less sensational” is the better way to put it). I think we get invested in each situation in a way (I know I do, and I’m sure others do as well) and it’s really nice to hear how things turn out for people.

        1. Anonymousaurus Rex*

          That’s good to know. You answered my “boring” letter back in February. I’ll send in an update–I can’t promise it will be exciting, but hopefully brings some closure!

          1. paul*

            Heh, ditto. Mine was in 2016 and *very* boring by the standards of this blog (for which I’m grateful!).

            I can’t find it by searching–the keywords just return *tons* of results but the update’s pretty meh anyway so no big

    3. Emmie*

      Yes, Toots NYC. I feel the same way. My heartfelt sympathies go out to so many of these writers, and I think about them often. I love their updates too.

  9. Sarah M*

    I like all the above, but PLEASE try to get an update re: the horrific phony arrest prank (posted yesterday). Thanks.

    1. Sylvan*

      Still curious about that; I’ve been wondering if this is a cultural thing and if so, where, and how it works.

    2. Super Nintendo Chalmers*

      I actually think about this one a lot, as well as the one where the manager didn’t want his skin-cancer-ridden employee to use blankets/an umbrella, even when she was in her own car. These types of corporate-obsessed managers truly baffle me. Like… what could they POSSIBLY be thinking, also, how do they look at themselves in the mirror?!

  10. Temperance*

    My list:

    1.) Bird attack letter
    2.) Norovirus coworker
    3.) Chemo interrupting boss
    4.) Liver Bully Boss
    5.) That intern who whined about wearing sneakers
    6.) The scary violent security guard from last week

    1. Annie Moose*

      If the norovirus one comes back, I hope Alison really watches the comments for that one! They got so out of hand.

      1. Say what, now?*

        As in they attacked the OP for not being sympathetic or they were going after the coworker super hard?

          1. Say what, now?*

            Oh… that’s unfortunate. I feel like when the comments get rough the OP doesn’t usually come back.

            1. Natalie*

              I think the letter writer was a third party observer in this case (i.e. this happened in my office, what do you think) but I may be remembering incorrectly.

      2. H.C.*

        I think I saw the Norovirus one shortly after it posted and just moved on, had no idea it exploded into such a heated debate about what to do with the employee/sick kid’s parent.

      3. Hills to Die on*

        I contributed to the vitriol quite a bit and I promise to behave if there’s an update (and in general).

  11. Phryne Fisher*

    This letter was from several years ago, but I would love to hear from the letter writer who was bewildered about why he was reprimanded for telling an employee she was “lucky she was cute” while he was yelling at her.

  12. Applesauced*

    – I used a white-sounding name on my resume and got way more interviews (Feb)
    – seconding (or third?) the fake fraud to get police attention
    – my salary changed on my first day of work (Aug)
    – all the men in my office are taking weekly outings together (Sept)

    As a side note – I just visited the archives, and Alison you answer A TON on letters! Thanks for all the hard work!

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      A few years ago I somehow settled on four posts a day Mon-Thurs and now I can’t seem to get myself to change it. I have no idea what I was thinking.

      1. D.W.*

        Let me second the gratitude.

        You do do a ton of work answering questions *thoughtfully*. None of us the “off-screen” time you put into writing and revising your responses.

        You, Allison, are the real MVP!

        Thank you!

      2. Ramona Flowers*

        I saw an old post via surprise me once where you said you’d love to go up to 3 a day but thought you’d lose your readers?!

          1. Artemesia*

            It is like my favorite mystery writers. So annoying that their writing speed doesn’t match my reading speed.

      3. Kat*

        I don’t recall when it was but sometime this year I realized when I’d check the site later in the day “oh wait there’s another new one for today?!” I love advice columns and I LOVE that you do more than one each day.

    2. Emmie*

      Yes! Major kudos to Allison for answering all those letters, and the extensive work it takes to maintain such a vibrant friendly on-topic reader exchange!

  13. Bored IT Guy*

    I know it’s an old one, but I still hope for an update to “My employee is putting magical curses on her co-workers”

      1. X. Trapnel*

        For anyone who’s ever read The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, she makes me think of the Princess of Sweet Rhyme and the Princess of Pure Reason rolled into one.

  14. EvilQueenRegina*

    I often wonder what happened with the company who collected for the coworker with the premature baby, and then the person holding the money got killed.

    1. BeautifulVoid*

      Oh, I was just thinking about that one!

      And I think this was last year, and people asked and I don’t think we got an update, but I still want to hear from the letter writer who wanted their stolen train back.

      1. Chocolate Teapot*

        I asked about the premature baby collection earlier this week after the reading the question about Gofundme for a co-worke’s deceased relative.

    2. ECHM*

      This is the request I came here to post (coworker with the preemie baby/money holder killed). But the stolen train one would definitely be interesting too.

      I love AAM!

  15. animaniactoo*

    I’d love to hear from Addison, and how she’s doing in her new position and how the jerky co-worker is doing, and so on.

    Also would love to hear from the (tech?) writer stuck working for her dad and dealing with employees who are making her life more difficult because he’s a jerk/she’s a nepotism hire, etc.

  16. FirstTimeCaller*

    The company who raised money for a premature birth (I think it was that?) and the person who was holding the money tragically and unexpectedly died. The company couldn’t ask the staff to raise a second round and there was an ethical issue: how/if we ask for the money back from the deceased persons family?

    1. Anon today...and tomorrow*

      Oh, yes. This one would be an interesting update. This was such a sad situation all over.

    2. paul*

      that one’s so sad I almost don’t want an update because I have a hard time picturing one that *isn’t* sad

  17. Manders*

    I’m curious about:

    – Haircut drama
    – The security guard who slept with and blackmailed an employee
    – The office that made everyone cook and eat lunch together
    – The person who had to share a hotel room with a screaming coworker
    – The person who didn’t want to eat with or travel with the opposite sex
    – I know the person whose coworker has hypochondria followed up once, but I’m so curious about whether that situation continued
    – The person who had a fling and a child with her new boss’s ex-husband (again, they already followed up once, but they were in a rough spot and I’m hoping they’re doing better)

    1. paul*

      we did get an update for the person who didn’t want to eat or travel with the opposite sex; the person who had those objections resigned IIRC

      1. Natalie*

        That’s a different person than the “queens don’t drive” woman, right? So then they both resigned.

          1. Natalie*

            I thought the “queens don’t drive” person couldn’t travel overnight no matter who was with her, though?

  18. ThisIsNotWhoYouThinkItIs*

    I have a few others that I’ll link later, but I wanted to put this one up now: the open thread one where everyone was leaving and management didn’t want to hire anyone! (link in the reply.)

    Here’s my old synopsis:

    This is the UK based one with Sansa the no-show and Tyrion the manager with a plan “at some point”. The OP was going to leave, and his other coworker (the one that showed up) was putting in notice as well. So, the department would be down to Sansa and the manager.

    1. ThisIsNotWhoYouThinkItIs*

      Sorry, should have said–April 28 2017 open thread, user name is “Anon for Rant!” Definitely go read it, because my summary can’t do it justice.

    2. Andie Elizabeth*

      I don’t follow the open threads but, out of curiosity I had to go check this one out, and would like the second the call for the update!

  19. Jennifer in GA*

    I REALLY want to hear back from the pregnant lady whose boss told her that her maternity clothes weren’t professional enough and she needed to tuck her shirts in when wearing a business suit.

    I felt such rage when reading this one- as if dressing a pregnant body wasn’t difficult enough! Ugh

    1. Marzipan*

      Yes, I came to ask for this, too. I was really angry on her behalf and would love to hear from her.

    2. teacher123*

      Yes I really am dying for this one! I think of her every time I see a professionally dressed pregnant woman.

    1. Sylvan*

      I want to know how that one worked out, too. It sounded like her boss was trying to punish her for being pregnant.

  20. Sabine the Very Mean*

    I want to hear from the woman who called her boss’s daughter a whore (may have been different word). She did update her story but I felt she didn’t really learn enough since she doubled down on the dinner stuff.

    1. Manders*

      Oh yes, I do think about her from time to time. In the update, it sounded like she’d internalized some very sad stuff about herself and I wonder if she ended up reflecting more on that.

    2. EE*

      The update added a whole new level to the story. We all thought that she meant to be abrasive when she said “My parents didn’t raise a whore” and it turns out she thought that was a perfectly normal turn of phrase to mean “I behave modestly”.

  21. A.N.O.N.*

    -The manager whose employee dressed up as another employee for Halloween to mock her.
    -The employee who was afraid of telling her boss that she was in it for the money.

  22. Ramona Flowers*

    I’d like to hear from the person who thought the CEO’s wife ruined their job prospects (we had one updated but I do wonder if the letter writer has learned from the experience).

    And an older one: I would dearly love an update on ‘No one will hire me as their visionary’.

  23. offonaLARK*

    I love all updates fiercely, but I am DESPERATE for a liver donation boss update! That post was my first on this site: someone linked me to it, and I’ve been reading daily ever since.

    1. Look What You Made Me Do*

      Yes I’d love an update for this one too! The one whose employee would not stop making comments about a coworker’s prosthetic leg. That one made me rage-y.

  24. Anlyn*

    There are so many I want an update on, and think “I should note these somewhere so I can remember to ask!”, and I never do.

    Definitely want an update on the costume imitation of the coworker for Halloween.

    1. ThisIsNotWhoYouThinkItIs*

      I was just thinking “I need a ‘Want updates from AAM!’ in my bookmarks folder!” :) Great minds.

    1. PB*

      Yes! This one was so weird. I would love to hear an update on this, and also see a picture of the amazing jacket.

  25. Lady Phoenix*

    1. Manager op that was dealing with andouchebag that masturbated openly and smacked women’s butts

    2. “Sylvia”‘s update on the Ghoster with a link to “Somebody that I Used to Know” song

    3. Liver Donar

    4. The one where an Irish woman wuote after being bullied during St. Patty’s day

    5. Birdphobic Update… Rlectric Boogaloo

    1. EE*

      I felt so furious about the Paddy’s Day story! How dare anyone – ESPECIALLY a person who isn’t even Irish – demand an Irish person perform particular rituals on our national day?

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        #3 here:

        I closed comments on the post because of the disrespect toward the OP — people were refusing to believe his version of events, told him that he hadn’t experienced racial bias despite being black, and were white-splaining racism to him. It’s the most upset I’ve ever been with the community here and I’m not up for reopening that. I had a nice exchange with him though, and he’s doing well.

        1. KAZ2Y5*

          I wonder about the female employee who got in trouble. Would you consider publishing the update but turn off all comments?

        2. Chriama*

          No need to go into details, and you can delete my comment if it’s disruptive, but is Beth doing ok too?

        3. The Strand*

          I am glad that Henry is doing well. I hope Beth is OK also, and I would also like to hear the update, even if it means no comments.

        4. Chicken*

          I totally understand that you might not want to do this, but might you consider posting the update with closed comments from the start?

  26. LadyDee*

    I would love to hear an update on “Anne,” the young assistant who requested a Monday off. The OP approved it, but then Anne forwarded OP’s email to her own manager, adding in a Friday, which she also took, leaving her office short-staffed since two people were already scheduled off. When questioned by her superior and OP, Anne could not credibly explain what happened.

  27. MaureenS*

    Given the attention to sexist, hostile behaviour recently, I’d love to hear an update on
    “I reported my sexist team to HR — and now they’re doing a much bigger investigation than I wanted” https://www.askamanager.org/2017/05/i-reported-my-sexist-team-to-hr-and-now-theyre-doing-a-much-bigger-investigation-than-i-wanted.html

    Also “1. My manager doesn’t like my maternity clothes” https://www.askamanager.org/2017/06/my-boss-doesnt-like-my-maternity-clothes-employee-wears-a-blanket-for-sun-protection-and-more.html

    I love reading AAM, partly for the really awesome advice (I’m a young manager) and for the outrageous stories.

  28. Anlyn*

    Here are some more I would like to see updates on, if there aren’t already:

    -The teacher who was pushed around by the parent and the principal didn’t stand up for her.

    -The employee who calls his supervisor “work mom”

    -The person whose girlfriend was on a call and she was worried about her girlfriend being a mean boss

    -The security guard who slept with an employee and tried to make her pay

    -The employees who were told an activer shooter drill was real, but wasn’t.

    -An update from one of the interns who signed the petition to change the dress code (the one that went viral; not the OP who wrote in, but one of the others who was concerned about putting the job on the resume).

    1. Nita*

      There was an update on the teacher situation – I think it was in the comments on the same post. The OP called the parent and said they’d over-committed on the spot, and the extra lessons cannot be done. The parent was not happy, but the OP stood by that.

    2. The Ginger Ninja*

      One of those interns did write in, I think to ask if she could leave that job off her resume since she was there for a short time. IIRC, Alison said she could.

  29. Drew*

    Two related ones:

    The man named “King” who was told by his company he couldn’t use that name because it offended a religious coworker: https://www.askamanager.org/2015/09/my-new-company-wants-me-to-change-my-name.html

    The woman whose boss refused to change company records to reflect her name change after she got married: https://www.askamanager.org/2017/03/my-boss-wont-accept-my-new-married-name-telling-an-interviewer-that-the-job-isnt-realistic-and-more.html

    I think we may have seen updates to one or both of these, but I’d love fresh updates if we can get them!

    1. Carpe Librarium*

      I would also love an update to #3 at that second link “3. I accidentally charged personal expenses to the nonprofit I volunteer for”
      Did everything work out okay? I hope it was resolved without too much trouble or stress.

  30. Lance*

    I’d honestly love an update on the nonbinary employee who took issue with their coworker wishing to go by female pronouns for themselves. I really hope they read your response, and some of the many thoughtful comments on the matter, and saw what was wrong with what they were doing.

    Besides that, the coworker consistently asking for loans springs to mind.

  31. Roscoe*

    I’d love to see an update about the employee who got her manager and coworkers arrested for smoking marijuana in the hotel

    1. Candi*

      The LW commented on that post, but it got drowned out in the debate.

      Apparently the senior worker was 1) considered a rock star 2) who had a reputation and record of being overly familiar with women coworkers and 3) management that turned a blind eye because of his work results.

      My gut told me that the employee didn’t tell the LW the whole story of what happened, the comment indicating possibly because of the way the company handled hands-on behavior in the past.

      Also, in the wake of it, I read as much as I could readily get my hands on over the next couple weeks -and it is a big freaking deal for a hotel to call the police. Most of the cases I found involved actual property damage or threatening or attacking other guests. Some hotel management also considers threatening/attacking their employees a reason to call the police. Usually the hotels settled for throwing them out without a refund and a bill for anything not already paid for.

  32. Anlyn*

    Was there ever an update on the boss who crashed his employee’s wedding to ask something about work and got thrown out? It was awhile back.

  33. Interviewer*

    The one where OP found a coworker in a compromising position. At work. All by himself. Multiple times. I can’t imagine a more uncomfortable conversation with my boss, but one that’s truly necessary. Really want to hear how OP managed that one.

  34. Ask a Manager* Post author

    These are all such great suggestions! I’ll reach out to each of the letter writers mentioned here and hopefully they will oblige us. Thanks for helping me identify who to ask.

    1. Helena*

      I have always been curious Alison, when you get letters from people do you find they use their own email addresses or is it more obviously made up ones for the purposes of writing to you. Sorry if this is the wrong place to ask but I have always wondered this. I guess it would depend on factors like whether or not they wanted to be anonymous or if their only email address was their work one.

      (Also thank you for all the work you put into AAM)

      1. Ask a Manager* Post author

        I think that most people use their real email addresses, although a couple of times I’ve noticed an email address is from one of those anonymous email services. Mostly people use personal email addresses though, not work ones. Although occasionally I’ve noticed work ones and thought “man, that is risky.”

        1. Miss Herring*

          On your “Ask a Question” page, you might add a line at the top saying something like “I generally recommend that you use a personal email to send questions, NOT your work email.”

      2. Ramona Flowers*

        I used a different email address when I sent mine and now I can’t remenber what it was! I already updated though.

    2. Elizabeth H.*

      I am dying to hear again from the letter writer who was answering “Why would you like to work here?” with “Because it’s not salacious.” He clearly was using the WRONG WORD but it was so off base that nobody could even begin to figure out what he meant or what word he thought he was actually using. This is the link: https://www.askamanager.org/2013/10/telling-an-interview-why-you-want-the-job-telling-your-manager-you-hate-your-work-and-more.html It was four years ago and it has haunted me ever since. Every time you do an updates roundup post, I think of it and it actually comes into my mind from time to time even when I’m not on the site. What was he trying to convey?? What was his job before?? What was salacious about his old job? The torment of not knowing!

  35. Allo*

    I cannot for the life of me remember the names now, but the one with the boss whose employee was being open about an affair with another employee…really curious to know how that played out!

  36. Big City Woman*

    I’m pretty new to this blog, having only discovered it very recently, so I’ve been reading old posts. Wow, there are some weird ones. I’ve looked for updates on a few and not found them. Here’re the ones I’d like updates on:

    The pregnant woman who, for safety and medical reasons, did not want to go to a mountain cabin retreat to work on a project with her team. She was an integral part of the team and wasn’t trying to get out of going, but she would be in her 3rd trimester, so she requested a different venue for it. In the comments, she said the team ultimately opted to go to the cabin without her, which made her feel like crap and not valued.

    The young guy with the anxiety disorder who went on FMLA leave after his unreasonable bosses accused him of faking a panic attack, and taunted and yelled at him for needing a few moments to step away when a panic attack happened. After he returned from FMLA, his grandboss mentioned his medical condition in front of his coworkers, he asked him not to, the grandboss exploded, and they put him on indefinite leave, saying he was mentally unstable.

    The manager who needed to discipline an employee for threatening to put a “magic curse” on her colleagues. I want to hear how that convo went!

    The new manager who inherited an out-of-control workplace full of immature 20-somethings who ran riot and did whatever they wanted. One threw a tantrum on the floor, someone carved hostile remarks on the OP’s office door, etc. The staff was protected by a union, I believe, and the OP was covering for someone on maternity leave.

  37. Jen Erik*

    The one I’ve been wondering about was the OP who asked: “Is it okay to be honest about just being in it for the money?” I think they said in the comments that they were going to take the advice when they met with their boss, and I really hope it went well for them.

    1. paul*

      Me to! I was amazingly upset at her boss’s actions and attitudes based on her letter. Like…almost as much as I’ve been about anything here ever.

  38. PB*

    I’d like to hear read update on the “I’m trying to get fired” letter where the OP faked an x-ray.

    1. PB*

      And also, the New York Magazine column about the manager who was getting harassed by her employee’s husband after asking her to talk about her family less at work.

  39. nep*

    Not so much an update, I guess — but did we ever learn why potatoes at the office constituted such a grave offense for one LW’s (weird) boss?

  40. AnonAndOn*

    I’d like to hear about the one where the OP wrote in about a part-time library employee (I believe “Martha”) whose loser criminal son (“Ralph”) was causing problems for his mother and I believe at the library if I remember correctly.

    1. The Ginger Ninja*

      Yes! And was there ever a reply to the one with the woman at the library who brought her son, and then her boyfriend and HIS son started hanging around?

    2. Ramona Flowers*

      Oh yes, I’d like an update on this one too.

      I’d also like to hear how it’s going with the manager whose direct report was harmed by the manager’s family as a child. We had one update, but I’d love to know how they’re doing – that letter writer handled the entire situation with such empathy and kindness.

      1. NotThatGardner*

        oof, i just got chills remembering that one. you’re right – i was struck by how graceful and empathetic the LW was about the situation, i’d love to know how it worked out.

  41. emmylou*

    With the anniversary of last year’s election, I been avidly curious about what happened with the poster whose boss was making all of them go to a retreat and Be Together on election night, and they were not all supporting the same candidate as the boss.

  42. EvilQueenRegina*

    I know this one is quite recent, but I would love to know whether the guy who got the rejection email saying he was shite ever found out the explanation for it.

  43. Tex*

    The LW with an OCD coworker that had HR requesting some pretty bizarre accommodations from other coworkers. All I remember is the not wearing of rings on one hand, asking people to arrange themselves in alternating male/female order, not wear clothing with prints (?) etc. I think the OCD coworker could not cope if things were not in symmetrical order.

  44. EA*

    Not quite in the same vein as some of the others, but I’d love to see an update from Alison’s nieces A and M – how is high school going, how were their summer jobs (if they’ve had any), etc.

    More in line with the other update requests, I’ll add another vote for wanting to hear another update from the person who needed a service dog, and her employer paid for it. Hopefully things are working out well for her and the dog.

  45. Robin*

    I want an update from the woman who had a very conservative religious boss who wanted her to ear only high necks and long sleeves. I was incensed for her.

  46. PurpleParrots*

    Can you please talk to the guy/girl who was getting specifically travel audited, to the point where they couldn’t buy guac at Chipolte? I know that we got one update there, but no guac…. that haunts me.

  47. Susan K*

    I would love to see updates from:
    – Should I tell my boss I know I’ve been a jerk and I’m getting therapy
    – Did my intern frame my coworker for credit card theft
    – My boss is insisting I get my tonsils out

  48. periwinkle*

    I’d love an update from the temp who got in a serious car accident, which prompted annoyance and anger from coworkers (of the “how dare you not respond instantly to my work calls just because you’re in the hospital – this wouldn’t have happened if you prayed more” variety) rather than, say, any decent human responses.


  49. Landshark*

    I’m still hoping for an update from the manager whose report wore the mean “basic” costume. That one’s been on my mind.

    Also, the recent letter about the writer who was chafing under style guidelines… I really want to hear whether she grows from this.

    1. Miss Elaine e*

      I was about to ask for the same one. (I realize it probably won’t happen because it was the mean boss writing in and probably would not want even more attacks than already (justifiably) received.

      Also, the person who’s desk was raided and a personal memento taken and later given to a stakeholder of a client company. Did the person get it (a train?) back?

  50. Cookienay*

    Here’s my wish list:
    Stolen train
    Liver donor boss
    Chemo interrupting boss
    Teacher being pushed around
    Boss barged in on wedding
    Boss barged on on funeral
    So many bad bosses around! Mine are not perfect, but they are at least reasonable people who want to be decent bosses.

  51. AMT*

    I really want to hear what happened to the employee who couldn’t stop talking about another employee’s prosthetic limb!

  52. Q*

    The LW who wanted to doa collaring ceremony adn couldn’t figure out how to still look professional.

    What did they pick, I wanna know!

  53. Observer*

    #3, have the conversation that Allison suggested. If it doesn’t stop at that point, please loop HR in. Even if they are not that good, the should be concerned about sexual harassment. And,when you complain, be explicit that that’s what you are complaining about. Who in their right mind grabs the back of someone’s neck in the workplace?

  54. Katherine*

    1. The OP who was fired for crashing the conference- would love some clarity on that as well as where the OP is now.

    2. With the “unmanager” story, I wish we could hear from the bullied coworker or one of the people on the team who got fired!

    3. The OP who wanted to kick the intern off of the trivia team.

    4. Sylvia!!! Where are you????

      1. Katherine*

        I really wanted the OP to fill in some blanks there… why she didn’t tell anyone ahead of time she was going to the conference, if the conference was available to the public for signups, etc.

  55. EvilQueenRegina*

    How about the one where the boss left a rude voicemail for the employee he thought had no call no showed, except the employee had been killed and the rude message was intercepted by her family, then the assistant got the disciplinary action for not informing the boss of the death when the assistant had been away herself and only found out about the death in the disciplinary meeting?

  56. JulieBulie*

    In addition to any/all of the above, I’ve often wondered about the OP whose employee would obsess all day over mass shootings and other violent events in the news.

  57. Lunchy*

    I’d like another update from the LW whose boss (and his boss, and HR) said she faked a panic attack. I remember the last check in saying she was on indefinite leave, but that she was interviewing. I’d like to know that she’s doing okay!

  58. His Grace The Duke of NJ*

    I want to hear about three people in particular from last year: The gentleman who wanted his employees to sign up to be liver donors for his brother, the boss who saw his best employee quit because he wouldn’t let her go to her graduation, and the guy who interrupted his employee’s wedding to ask a work-related question.

  59. Em*

    I’m a day late so I understand if this one doesn’t get seen, but I was wondering about the letter writer who was getting gifts from a coworker whose daughter had died, I think was the situation?

  60. Linden*

    There was an update last December, but I’d like another one from the letter-writer (aka alligatorsky) whose mother was a destructive force in her professional life (and really, her life in general). That was one of the hardest of all time.

  61. Half-Caf Latte*

    I’d really love an update from the OP who was a school principal and asked Ms. Honey to stop breastfeeding/pumping in order to “facilitate” a conversation between the unreasonable parent and Ms. Honey.

    I know there was an update in the comments, but
    1) It wasn’t clear whether Ms. Honey had already stopped pumping, and I really hope she was able to continue breastfeeding as long as she wanted to!
    2) I also wonder about what learning the OP has taken from this situation. The update talked about dealing with the unreasonable parent, but didn’t address the desires to be a people-pleaser. Snark took some heat in the comments for nitpicking, but I thought their point about the blame-shifting language in the update had merit.

  62. Princess Cimorene*

    I just can’t believe we are already at this time of year again! I feel like we just did this!!! (I’m excited of course, but wow this year is really over already)

  63. DataChick*

    I’d like to hear back from the employer who wouldn’t let her best employee come in late for her graduation so she quit on the spot! I hope the employee is in a better place and the employer opened her eyes on how to treat hard workers!

  64. Dot Warner*

    I’m a bit late here, but:

    *The person who wrote in last year that their new job required them to be fluent in French but they couldn’t speak it.
    * An update from one of the dress code interns
    * Princess Tiana’s boss
    * The person whose employee was snippy with everyone and dramatic about stress
    * The person whose entire office was mad at them for missing work after they’d been hurt in a car accident

  65. ThisIsNotWhoYouThinkItIs*

    Found another! I’d forgotten about this one until the buzzfeed article:



    Any further updates? I hope things are going well for the LW–that was a mess and they (upper management) bungled it badly.

  66. Linden*

    I’d love an update from last year’s “was I asked to a fake interview by someone who was lonely or looking for dates?” letter-writer. I hope she contacted the company!

  67. Anontoo*

    The woman who was being hit on by an outside contact. Was it Harvey Weinstein? Let’s find out!

    I’d also love an update from Alison, if you have ever reached out to any of the “bad career advice” offenders – it would be interesting to hear their replies!

  68. HappySnoopy*

    I discovered this site from a Washington post Live chat reference and have been addicted for a couple weeks now reading back blog entries. Love the common sense advice.

    Hope its not too late, but I was wondering if there was ever an update from 10/31/16 entry. Ernest trying to shoehorn his way into a dept by taking advantage of someone on fmla, including going around the op several times and snowing her boss (Martin) with his “gumption”.

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