employee might give me drugs for Christmas, coworker’s husband punched me, and more

It’s three answers to three questions. Here we go…

1. My employee might give me drugs for Christmas

I’m a manager of a the warehouse team at our company and earlier today a member of the sales team who reports to me and who I have a good rapport with asked me if I smoke pot. It’s legal here and I admitted that I have in the past, and the sales rep immediately said, “Great, I wasn’t sure what to get you for Christmas.” If this employee gives me pot, should I accept or is there a polite way to decline this offer? I don’t smoke anymore but I don’t want to appear ungrateful and I certainly don’t want to ask for a different present.

If you’re in the U.S., pot is still illegal under federal law, even if it’s legal in your state … and you shouldn’t accept gifts from employees that either or both of you could go to jail for. That’s not about being ungrateful — it’s about the fact that as a manager you can’t condone or appear to condone breaking the law at work.

Hopefully your employee has better judgment than to really give you Christmas weed, but if they do, you can reply, “I can’t accept this and really need to pretend it didn’t happen.” And if they’re bringing it on to company property, that’s a whole additional issue — enough of one that you might be wise to head it off before then with something like, “I’m guessing that was a joke earlier — but if it wasn’t, definitely don’t give that to me or any coworkers here.”

2. Coworker’s husband punched me after the Christmas party

I was recently at an office Christmas party and our spouses were included. There was drinking. Everyone had a very nice time. On the way home in a bus rented by our employer, my coworker’s husband began to fight with her in the back of the bus. It continued to escalate. Suddenly her husband verbally assaulted my husband. He stood up, as did my husband, and pushed his finger into my husband’s chest, yelling profanities. I stepped in to try to mediate, and my coworker’s husband throat punched me (weakly but enough so that it caused me to trip sideways, although I did not get injured). He yelled obscenities at me twice to get out of the way and to shut up while my coworker friend was in tears and apologizing. Our employer and two other men had to physically force the man to the front of the bus to contain the situation.

I am embarrassed and I am so very sorry for my dear coworker, who I know feels humiliated. How am I to go to work on Monday?

You have literally nothing to be embarrassed about! Your coworker’s husband assaulted you, and with zero provocation. The only thing you need to worry about is whether your coworker/friend is okay, because her husband is scary.

She’s undoubtedly mortified and wondering how she is going to be able to go to work on Monday, even though she didn’t do anything wrong either. Neither of you did. Her husband is the only person to blame for what happened.

Go to work as normal, and ask how she’s doing. Tell her you don’t blame her and your main concern is if she’s okay. (If you’re close enough, and especially if she doesn’t seem surprised by her husband’s rage, consider asking if she feels safe at home. There’s info here that might be helpful.)

People will probably ask how you’re doing as well, and you can answer that however you want — “shaken up,” “recovering,” “hanging in,” “mainly worried about how Jane’s doing,” or whatever you’re comfortable with.

3. How should my resume show multiple contracting companies for the same job?

I’m a government contractor. I started with my current position in May. My current company lost the bid to renew the contract with the agency I work for and a new one is taking their place. I’ll be joining the new company at my same job come January. I’ll have the same job title and responsibilities at the same government agency, just the contracting company will change.

How do I list that on a resume or places like LinkedIn without it looking like job hopping or a series of short term positions, as it’s not? I haven’t changed jobs, but the way government contracting works makes it look weird outside of that business.

It won’t look that weird! People generally understand this set-up. List it like this:

Head Llama Interpreter, Department of Llama Protection, May 2019 – present
Via Company 1, May – December 2019
Via Company 2, January 2020 – present

{ 384 comments… read them below }

  1. Elizabeth the Ginger*

    OP 1, it sounds like even aside from anything else, this would violate the rule of “gifts shouldn’t flow up.”

    1. LadyL*

      “Hey, thank you for this dank, dank kush, but you know etiquette suggests that an employee should never feel compelled to go all out buying their boss high-end chronic. Really gifts ought to flow downward, so I’m supposed to be getting you some sticky icky, not the other way around! Just ask Emily Post.”
      – the future liberals want
      (I’m liberals)

        1. LadyL*

          You can thank the McElroy brothers for that, as that is often how they describe weed on their podcast and it cracks me up every time.

          1. pamela voorhees*

            This entire script is absolutely an outtake of “the McElroy brothers pretend to be Miss Manners”

      1. I'm liberal too!*

        Holy banana pants!!! I’m dying!

        I vote for giving it back to said employee during the Christmas party. For the warehouse wink wink. ;P

      2. LadyL*

        I realized that I should note that Emily Post’s granddaughter has actually written an etiquette guide for marijuana, so I jest but as usual reality is stranger (and more delightful!) than fiction.

        Hey OP, maybe get your employee the Post book on weed etiquette for Christmas?

      3. LadyL*

        Actually though, Emily Post’s granddaughter has written a book on weed etiquette, maybe OP should consider gifting it to her employee!

    2. NYWeasel*

      Last week I happened to catch wind that my team was chatting about getting me a gift, and I’ve been worrying about how to gently redirect their kindness without offending them.

      This letter takes it to a whole ‘nuther level!!!!

      1. Generalistless*

        Do be very afraid of Federal Agents storming your sesh if you have personal possession in a legal state

    3. Alston*

      I am a little worried there could be a secret santa element to this or something. Like imagine if they gave you weed in front of people. I think the op would have to handle it a little differently.

      1. Observer*

        If the OP wound up opening it in from of others, they would have to immediately get rid of it, in public.

      2. Venus*

        Cannabis is legal here, and it has been suggested that someone should bring some to the company’s secret santa exchange. The limit is $10, so the gifts tend to fall into the category of Consumables and if the recipient doesn’t like them then they can regift (cheap bottles of wine, chocolates, etc).

        In the US this might be problematic, but in some countries it is an amusing novelty. No different than wine, and healthier than sickarettes.

        1. TardyTardis*

          Sadly, my company said very briefly. ‘yes, it’s legal, don’t do it here or you’re fired’ (though I did have a little talk with my boss if my husband with lymphoma ever had to to use it, and the precautions I would use so as not to get much contact).

      1. SomebodyElse*

        That was my first thought… I’d have to go back and check but I don’t think the “My state says it’s legal so I don’t have to abide by work policy” has held up in court. It seems that gifting pot to your manager could fall under that very bad idea if this were in fact a policy.

        Typically most warehouses have an active no drug/alcohol policy because of the equipment.

        1. Jaydee*

          Drinking alcohol is legal. Smoking cigarettes is legal. Many workplaces ban smoking on premises or in employer vehicles. Many employers prohibit drinking during work hours and some even prohibit having unopened containers of alcohol on premises. So I imagine employers could have the same policies regarding weed in states where it is legal.

  2. Annastasia von Beaverhausen*

    1. If you’re in Canada treat it like you would a bottle of alcohol – say thank you and then regift.

    Gifts should flow down but sometimes they don’t and that’s ok sometimes.

    1. Tau*

      Yeah, I was wondering what OP should do if they’re not in the US and in a country where pot is 100% legal. Maybe catching the employee and going “hey, I don’t know if you were serious when you talked about getting me something for Christmas, but just so you know [insert appropriate script for gifts should flow down please don’t give me a present here]”, leaving the nature of the gift out of it entirely?

    2. Tamz*

      You wouldn’t buy someone tobacco… even a bottle of wine is something I’d only get if I was sure the person would enjoy it.

      Awkward story – one year in the office gift exchange, I bought two craft beers for a recovering alcoholic. Ever since, I err on the side of no booze unless I really know the person.

        1. Baja*

          And a bottle of wine was the most sought-after gift one year in — I forget what game it is, people pick a wrapped gift in an order by draw, and the next person can steal an earlier gift instead and hope it isn’t stolen later in turn. This included two layers of managers vying for it like everyone else on our team participating.

          1. TardyTardis*

            We had a very dramatic battle over a bucket of Corona (drama mainly lent by the drama teacher, no surprise there).

        2. FiveWheels*

          Totally depends on the culture… I’m in the UK and giving tobacco would be considered bizarre because smoking is currently fairly taboo – drinking on the other hand is very much not taboo.

          1. Terry*

            It depends on workplace culture. I’m in the US and alcohol is a pretty common gift even at work, but I can see how it wouldn’t go over well in some workplaces.

          2. UKDancer*

            Also UK and I’d fully agree. Giving cigars or tobacco would be considered very weird here as the company I work for tends to err more on the side of supporting people quitting. I don’t personally know anyone who smokes so if someone gave me cigars they’d go in the bin.

            Giving alcohol is a lot more normal. That said we’ve got a fairly low cost limit on secret santa and you’d struggle to find anything decent in the price bracket. Last time we did it, there were a lot of chocolates and joke gifts which says something about what we’re into.

          3. nêhiyaw ayahkwêw*

            Definitely different culture to culture. In my culture tobacco is what you’re supposed to gift someone, especially when they’ve done you a favour or if they’re a teacher or elder

        3. MK*

          Cigars wouldn’t be an inappropriate gift 30 years ago. Nowadays, though, when tobacco use is being very restricted, it wouldn’t be the best idea. I think the same goes for marihuana, in the opposite direction: maybe 30 years from now it will be a completely unremarkable gift, but right now it is still a pretty controversial issue, so it’s not a good idea to bring it into the workplace.

          1. Quill*

            At least wine can be relatively easily regifted… even were I in canada, I’d struggle finding someone to regift a fancy wad of grass to, and there is literally no one whose smoking or vaping I’d enable in any way when it came to nicotine and the various other constituents of cigars (or vape pens.)

          2. schnauzerfan*

            It used to be very common to give tobacco. A couple of cartons of smokes was a really normal gift for my Uncles or a roll of snuff for the one who liked “chaw.” Of course when I was 8, I used to earn my allowance by riding my Stingray bike six blocks to the grocery store with 5 bucks and a note from my Dad. Pick up a carton (not a pack a carton) and keep the $1.50 change. I didn’t wear a helmet either. The 60s were a whole different world.

            Now I would give anything stronger than coke-a-cola…

            1. Elsewhere1010*

              Would you be surprised to learn that a carton of ciggies, in San Francisco, now cost $99.52 at the “cheap” gas station?

              1. schnauzerfan*

                Not surprised, but feeling very very old. I used to think Dad was crazy talking about 5 cent movie tickets when I was paying $0.75. And now?

        4. Misquoted*

          Cigars would be a very unwelcome gift to many (at least in the US). People either smoke them or they don’t — same with cigarettes and pot — you have to know your recipient well enough to know whether or not cigars would be a good gift (and I think cigarettes and pot are never a good gift). Wine is not a good gift in an office environment, to my mind, but is often a welcome gift otherwise — even if one doesn’t drink wine (I don’t), it’s often served at get-togethers, so it’s not as risky as other things mentioned.

        5. Socrates Johnson*

          That would be a terrible gift for me since I don’t smoke and don’t know anyone I’m friends with that would either.

        6. whingedrinking*

          For people who are known to like cigars, sure, but overall the rates of tobacco smoking are in such steep decline that I wouldn’t put them in the same category even as a bottle of wine. I’m in my thirties and I’ve smoked tobacco about five times in my entire life, counting both cigarettes and hookahs. I would be kind of baffled to receive a cigar as a gift.

      1. Kimmybear*

        I got cigarettes as part of an office secret Santa once…I had quit smoking a month before…then I started getting yelling phone calls from my boss in January and was really happy I had that gift.

    3. Bluenoser*

      It would be an interesting survey to see whether Canadian’s attitudes about pot are more like tobacco or alcohol. Where I am (see username) I would say much more like tobacco. People will announce that they are going to smoke at small, intimate gatherings but “go for a walk” or just step out quietly at larger ones.

        1. Helena*

          More like alcohol in my workplace (healthcare). You might pop out for a cigarette at lunchtime but you certainly wouldn’t have a joint. Or even be particularly open about smoking off-duty.

          Although I walk through the financial district on my way to work, and see city workers in three piece suits having a joint at 8am, so clearly not every workplace is the same.

          1. Ontariariario*

            I would say the same here. Cannabis is something for parties on weekends, although it is smoked similarly to tabacco in that people will go outside for a chat rather than consuming it openly indoors like they do with alcohol.

            There are alcoholics who have drinks before going in to work, and smokers have cigarettes at all times of the day, so a joint at 8am isn’t a surprise. I also know of some folks who use it medically, although I suspect they don’t use it openly just outside of their workplace.

        2. also in Toronto*

          I think it depends on the industry. My partner works in tech and they openly smoke joints at Christmas parties and have gifted it to each other in the past. My industry seems to acknowledge it exists in our personal lives but not in our professional lives, or at least not more than the occasional joke. I prefer not to talk about it at work because I don’t want them to know what a stoner I am.

      1. RecentAAMfan*

        I’m in Canada too. The whole legalization thing is still new enough that if I got a weed gift I’d probably giggle and feel naughty.

      2. Miss Canuck*

        I’m in northern Ontario and I’d liken it to alcohol, if they can even be compared. I think smoking cigarettes is much more taboo than weed here, though of course the etiquette of smoking outside is still present.

      3. Nanani*

        I think the biggest difference is that indoor smoking is still a no-go in most public venues, regardless of whether its tobacco, pot, or something else.
        So you can have a beer at a bar or game or whatever but you can’t light up. That makes it a pretty easy fit for the “excuse yourself and only smoke it where its allowed” approach.

        1. Jayn*

          Yeah smoking anything always has the potential to affect others, even if only in a “ew, that stinks” way. Just yesterday my father was complaining that since legalization he’s been smelling it everywhere (I have nothing against it myself, but also don’t like the scent). It’s a lot easier to drink unobtrusively.

      4. Oh So Anon*

        I’m somewhere in the Prairies, it’s legal here, but even so I’m not seeing people treat it in the same way that they would alcohol especially among coworkers. At least at my current employer, people tend to be pretty clandestine about whether they use tobacco, and they generally go even further to hide pot use. We’re on a weed-free premises, so there’s that, but there’s a polite fiction that no one ever uses the stuff in their personal lives, ever, far unlike the way people talk about drinking. FWIW, we’re all white-collar, upper-middle-income professionals.

        I’ve worked at companies where gifts sometimes flowed up, leading to us getting our manager top-shelf alcohol of some sort, but somehow that feels a lot different than gifting some other legal substance. People know who else partakes, but it would be regarded as massively bad judgement to gift your boss pot.

      5. whingedrinking*

        I’d say it’s somewhere in between the two. For example, in my province it’s legal to smoke cannabis anywhere that it’s legal to smoke cigarettes or vape, but that’s actually pretty limited (you can’t smoke in any indoor public space, at transit stops, within six metres of a public door, window or intake fan, on the grounds of a K-12 school, on the patio or outdoor seating of any business…I’m probably forgetting some other ones too). So you can walk down the street smoking pot if you want, which you can’t legally do with a beer. However, I would say that most people would probably not want to be stoned at work just as they wouldn’t want to be drunk, and in that way it’s different from coffee or cigarettes. There’s yet another level in that I’ve been to plenty of office parties where there was liquor available, but I wouldn’t expect to see edibles laid out next to the beer cooler any time soon.

    4. Kramerica Industries*

      Not necessarily. My company directly stated that it’s still a weed-free premises despite the legalization. There’s still a big stigma around pot use and I feel like companies are still trying to figure out the line on what “casual smoking” looks like. Beers at lunch? Sure, great! Smoking at work? Nope, not allowed at all.

    5. OP1 (Heed to the Weed)*

      Original Poster 1 Follow Up

      -To clarify, I am writing from Canada where pot has reached roughly the same level of control as alcohol, and while I agree that gifts shouldn’t flow up, what’s a person to do? The gifter is quite adamant, I politely (again, Canadian) refused when he brought it up but they insisted. I think if I lived in the US I could more strongly refuse.

      Company policy refers to the consumption and working under the influence, holding isn’t specifically addressed. Not sure how/when they expect to give it to me, doubt it will happen while I’m serving the holiday lunch.

  3. Sue*

    With #2, we don’t know what the coworker has been going through at home or whether there are children. But her husband’s behavior is very alarming and it’s quite likely if he acts like this in public at a work event that much worse is going on at home.
    Most people would probably leave it alone but I would struggle to do that out of fear for the family and might look into filing a complaint with the authorities. In our courts, a case like this would usually result in an alcohol evaluation and mandatory anger management treatment. It could be a blessing to the coworker to require him to get help without her being the victim and putting herself through that phase of a court case, if that makes sense. Many victims are afraid to turn the perpetrator in but this would be outside parties (the OP and her spouse) pursuing it.
    Just something to consider.

    1. SweetSue*

      I have considered a complaint byt wondered if it would be valid 48nhrs later since I didnt file that complaint immediately. I am very worried about my friend and I was most concerned that he he had no control on this situation as a result of too much alcohol, indeed, how much more RAGE is SHE subjected to at home. I appreciate Alison’s response and your input as well. I am alarmed for her and will likely be very cautiously concerned. My fear is that she may say nothing at all, leaving her humiliated and vulnerable. Thank You!

      1. anonymous 5*

        I cannot imagine that a complaint about violence (violence that was witnessed by others, no less) would no longer be considered “valid” after only 48h. I am very sure that you can express your concern for your friend when you file the complaint, and I would hope that HR would take seriously that the threat of your friend’s husband lashing out at her because you complained is very real.

        1. SweetSue*

          True. It is a very small company without a real HR. But upper msnagemrnt was on the bus. So I plan to speak with her as well. Thank You!

          1. Hey Nonnie*

            Consider filing charges, not just a complaint. A punch is assault, and it doesn’t matter that it was a weak punch or that you were uninjured. It would be illegal even if he missed entirely.

            And if anyone questions why you waited, you can tell them that you didn’t want things to escalate even further at the time.

          2. LemonFizz*

            Hey Allison, I know letter writer 2 didn’t ask this question but I’m asking it because I am curious. If this situation had happened to one of your employees would this man be allowed to come back to next years office holiday party? Sorry if I posted this question in the wrong spot.

      2. EPLawyer*

        Even though it would be you making the complaint, the wife will still be blamed. He will never see it as his fault. It was her work event, you are her co-worker. It will be framed as she is getting her co-worker to make “false” charges against him. I know they aren’t false. But I have yet to see an abuser say anything other than someone is making stuff up to get him in “trouble.”

        Treat carefully. Use the Resources Alison suggested before acting. Not only might he take his anger out on her, he might be the main breadwinner of the family. Even though she has a job, she might not be able to pay the bills on her own without his income. Filing criminal charges could jeopardize his job.

        These are all reasons victims don’t report their abusers. It’s a balancing act.

        1. Dr. Pepper*

          This is exactly what I was thinking. He will blame her regardless. Abusers aren’t logical, and will twist anything around to suit their needs. Sometimes (often) there isn’t anything you can really do, painful as that is to contemplate. Abusive relationships are complicated for many reasons, and there are no simple and easy answers.

          1. Observer*

            I’ve actually seen something like this play out. The fact that the person taking action did NOT talk to the victim first was the key thing that made if effective, actually.

            After it all went down, my friend told me about and said that her husband was really upset and “Why didn’t he talk to me first about it?” I pointed out to her that she’d been struggling with this problem for months and couldn’t get through to her husband, and this NEEDED to happen. But, since he she knew nothing about it she could shut down any conversation about it by saying totally truthfully “This had nothing to do with me. I didn’t ask for it and no one asked my opinion.” He’s not a reasonable person (otherwise the problem would not have gone on as long as it did) but that did shut him up.

            Now, if the guy is going to blame her ANYWAY, he’s going to find something else to blame her for. Because then it’s not about the triggers but about when get gets drunk, is in a bad mood or whatever.

            No one can or SHOULD try to make CW do anything that she’s not ready to do. But at this point his behavior is not only a concern for her anymore, and the OP has standing to do something about it.

            1. Penny Parker*

              +100 Do not delay because of fear of him becoming more violent; he is already there. In this case there are many witnesses, and witnesses are often needed to prove the man is violent. Use this situation for the good; report it.

            2. Jules the 3rd*

              I strongly recommend following the advice of experts from someplace like the National Domestic Violence Hotline (US). They would be better than random internet commenters at knowing whether you should talk to your co-worker and follow her guidance (because she knows her situation best) or take independent action.

        2. Observer*

          Please do NOT avoid filing a complaint because it might jeopardize his job. Figuring out the best thing to do can be complicated, but protecting men from the consequences of their actions is never the best thing to do.

          What you are essentially suggesting is that she stay in a dangerous situation because he may be the primary breadwinner. That’s not a viable path.

          1. Gazebo Slayer*

            There are multiple people who need protection from this guy – OP2’s coworker whom it’s likely he abuses, as well as OP2 herself (whom he punched in the throat!), OP2’s husband, and likely OP2’s other coworkers who also were involved. I’m not sure how to weigh OP2’s coworker against everyone else, but I too am uncomfortable with the idea of telling OP2, who is also this guy’s victim, that she should keep quiet to preserve his job.

            1. Gazebo Slayer*

              (Also, since numerous other people witnessed the fight, someone other than OP is likely to report this to the police or take other action, if they haven’t already. The situation may be out of her hands.)

          2. Spero*

            I agree that’s not a viable path, but many victims see it as a short term solution while they try to figure out some long term way to stop the abusive behavior. Unfortunately that long term solution rarely emerges because the abuser has no interest in changing.
            But, it’s not completely wrong to recognize that some victims do make a conscious choice to delay or not report abuse in order to establish or maintain financial security. It is not a choice they should have to make – but sometimes they do. It doesn’t change what this OP should do, but it does make it likely the victim will become angry at the reporter. From the victim’s perspective, it is the reporter’s fault for disrupting the ‘short term’ financial security plan as much as the abuser’s fault for creating the situation in the first place. The victim may have negative feelings towards both reporter and abuser.

        3. pcake*

          This. So VERY much this, particularly the first paragraph. I’ve never yet seen it go any other way, and it can lead to more or more severe beatings or horrible situations for the woman involved.

          1. Penny Parker*

            If one does not report abuse and assault for fear of making the perpetrator more violent and angry, then one is already being held hostage by the abuse. I speak as a formerly abused person. Do not let the fear of what might happen in the future prevent you from dealing with the NOW. Report it and help change the future.

          2. Socrates Johnson*

            It will already escalate. Abusers do not stop, they will always blame the abused. Doing nothing because you think it will make it worse enables. When I had to take out a protective order on my husband I worried he would be mad and make things worse for me in the divorce. He already was going to do that – this just protected me for the time being and also gave me ammunition later on. As someone who has been abused, it is helpful when other people can say they were also affected by the person’s behavior.

      3. snowglobe*

        I’m pretty sure the statute of limitations on assault is longer than 48 hours; the primary difficulty with delayed reports is that they may be harder to prove. In this case it sounds like there was a whole group of witnesses.

      4. Tica*

        If you are in the USA, you generally have 2-3 on most civil torts and longer in criminal matters.

        The only time limit is the statute of limitations.

        The reason you report quickly has more to do with witness memory and timely arresting the perp

      5. Wintermute*

        The statute of limitations for assault varies but it’s usually at least six months, you’d be fine to talk to the police now about it. Now, for a case like this, be prepared for them not to do a whole lot, depending on the city you’re in and the local police department (mine around here, if there’s no injuries and they’re not on-scene when it happens they will file a statement report but not much else).

        People often overestimate how much police will do, or underestimate how much it takes to actually get police attention, especially in a busy city PD, but having paperwork out there always helps because it can put them on the PD’s radar, in case she ever does need to file a police report, someone with multiple complaints will get extra scrutiny.

        1. Observer*

          I think that in a case like this having the paperwork in place is a really, really useful thing, even if the police do nothing. Because if / when CW decides to make a move, it’s going to be a lot easier to get the serious consideration from a judge and police if she can show that it is not “just” a domestic issue, that she is NOT “over-reacting” and that there really is a significant threat to her safety. The fact that he assaulted someone else and it’s on the official record will help with that.

          1. Wintermute*

            exactly. There’s now someone on-record they know they can call up if the judge is on the fence about an order of protection and they want corroboration that he’s violent.

            Plus I’d add in a situation where it’s not a big city that won’t sent out a detective for anything but a felony, it can prompt the police to do some investigation on their own. Police know how domestic abuse works, they’ve seen all this before. They might just have a patrol car cruise past once or twice a night in case they hear or see something, or they might tell the school resource officer to discreetly check on the kids.

            Police can’t intervene in anything they don’t know about. There’s nothing saying that they will necessarily act right now, but by putting the information in their hands you ensure it’s there if you, or she, ever needs it.

      6. Lazy River*

        If you want to talk to experts about the best way to help your friend, call the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (assuming you are in the US). They can help you work out the best way to proceed.

        1. Blueberry*

          Thank you so much for posting this number; I was just about to go look it up.

          LW#2, please please call this number. These are the people who can help beyond all our speculations.

      7. Penny Parker*

        FYI: Last stats I read said that domestic violence reports to the police are often filed after 48 hours (the ones where the police do not come to break it up). Most domestic violence victims wait over 24 hours before seeking medical help. In my long ago past I was abused, and I waited well over 24 hours before being seen by medical staff when I got my throat and hand cut with a knife. It is common.

        The wait alone is a signal to those who work in the field as to how serious the situation is. At least, that is all info I got when working in the field. File a report with the police! It is the best way you can help her because this time he attacked an outsider, you. (I used my experiences to help others, and have been active in domestic violence work since the 1980s)

      8. A.*

        I was attacked in college by a football player. The campus police pressured me into not calling the cops on the guy the night of the attack. But I did go down to the police station the next day to file a complaint. That to say, I think you are fine if you decide to file a complaint 48 hours later.
        I absolutely would be pressing charges if I was punched by a coworker’s or friend’s husband. I don’t date abusive men and I will not be abused by anyone else’s husband.

    2. 'Tis Me*

      I guess the wife could also argue that her company is insisting on the coworker pressing charges as it happened at a work event and otherwise they’re worried they could be held liable in some way (i.e. By not addressing it they’d be treating it as something that people should accept and even expect in a work environment), if he tries to pressure her to get the OP to drop it?

        1. Narise*

          I would think at the very least they would make it clear to the employee that her husband can no longer attend company events whether alcohol is being served or not. If he were to assault another coworker after the company knew about the first incident then that may cause them legal issues.

        2. Jules the 3rd*

          There was a really good one about that in the past; the company / employees manager worked with the employee to leave. This included keeping the husband off site, helping the employee move to a new office, and I forget what more. But that was the employee leaving the abuser.

          If the employee chooses to stay with her abuser, the company can work with her on keeping control of her paycheck (ie, send bonuses / raises to a new account he doesn’t know about, though taxes will make that harder), make an EAP available, and forbid the abuser from any workplace activity, but there’s not much more they can do.

      1. Blueberry*

        From my experience with abusers, logic is not helpful. Someone like this will not back down just because his wife has a logical argument about why she can’t do what he’s demanding, and may well punish her for trying. I really hope she calls the domestic violence hotline linked above, just as I hope LW does.

    3. FiveWheels*

      There are many, many abusive spouses who would escalate their behavior if an incident like this was reported to the police.

      I’m not saying don’t call the police, but DEFINITELY don’t assume it will be helpful to her.

      1. Malty*

        This – Sue what you’re considering clearly comes from a kind place but abuse like this isn’t as simple as swooping in and saving the person, (I’m in a similar situation with a friend right now and God believe me I wish it was). It may be worth speaking to a domestic abuse hotline to seek some advice if you’re unsure what to do. I know it might feel callous to witness something like this and not report it, but as has been said that’s not necessarily going to help. It’s very, very common that rather than someone else reporting it ‘saving’ her from consequences, it would actually put her in further danger. You can also offer her your support privately. Sorry this situation is going on

        1. Sue*

          I work in the courts and my thoughts were informed by my experience with hundreds of assault cases, both DV and not. In our courts, these cases are treated seriously but with a treatment emphasis, not jail time. Most defendants in this situation would be required to get a probation monitored evaluation and then treatment as recommended. We often see defendants who actually benefit from it.

        2. SweetSue*

          I am in agreement with you. At the time it didn’t even occur to me to retaliate because my CW/friend was so sorry and so upset. I only wanted her to know I was ok. On Monday when I went in, very nervous, she was still visibly upset, tearful, apologetic, and even said she had never seen him in such a state, had no idea what inspired his rage, that he broke her car window and busted with his fist a wall or door at home latervthat night. I went ahead and asked the obvious question…’Are you ok? Has he ever done this to you? Are you afraid?’. This appeared to shock her as she stopped mid apology, even tearing, and said with a surprised look on her face., ‘No…never.’ She said she told him he needed to apologize and he agreed the very next day and was remorseful and said he didn’t know why he raged at all and admitted he needed to get help. Then as other people came in to work she went about her day. She has been very quiet and I have not mentioned it again. I have not heard from him and honestly don’t believe anything will ever be the same between my CW and myself. I feel like he will likely stay away frok any event and that she remains very embarrassed, which makes me so very sad. I have not pressed anything. I did tell my boss, who was on the bus and witnessed his rage but not the throat punch, what really happened just for the record. I am still very concerned and uncomfortable. I would like to believe her but, as a sister of a traumatized abused woman myself, I feel that this something is amiss and that she is not ready to admit it or even realized it’s magnitude. I am so sick over this and am being very cautious. Since she seemed so surprised that I asked the obvious question, I am hoping that she may ne thinking about it more and concluding that his behavior is unacceptable at all. Maybe she REALLY hasn’t thought of this as something that could happen to her…but only to other people. I think I made it clear I thought he was abusive by asking. I think her silence and discomfort actually says I am right. Where we once enjoyed a very playful banter and enjoyment of our work together, there is only business as usual without much conversation. Maybe she really us just embarrassed. Maybe that was the first time. BUT…I try to engage her, encourage her, express how much I care about her with little or no response. The fact that she has grown very silent actually validates my concern. I don’t know how far to push. The weight of ‘she knows that I know’ feels very heavy to me. The fact that he has made no effort to apologize feels VERY heavy to me. I would LOVE to be wrong. My gut says I am not. So nauseas.

          Thank you so much for your input. I will call the hotline. Thank you for your sincere concern.

          1. Malty*

            Hey Sue I hope you see this even though it’s few days late – give her a few days, you can’t expect your relationship to go straight back to normal. You’ve done the right thing. But just please remember, this is not yours to fix, you’ve done what you can and now all you can do is be available to her. Take care of yourself, this was traumatic for you too, and don’t hold out for an apology from him. It’s truly awful yo be in the situation you’re in but you’re not close enough to it to change it, so be really kind to yourself around this and take some time to process your own feelings around what happened. xx

      2. Penny Parker*

        Reporting to the police documents that this man is a violent man, and that he has no scruples about using his violence, even at a work event and in front of witnesses. Having the documentation may indeed make the difference in how the coworker is helped by the law when, and if, she needs to report other acts of violence.

    4. Yorick*

      I wouldn’t assume at all that he’d have any mandatory treatment if he were convicted for this incident. It’s a low level crime; in my state, it’s a misdemeanor assault (5th degree) and is punishable by a short jail stay and/or a fine. Sure, a judge *might* order treatment instead of jail, but it’s probably unlikely since priority for treatment is given to more serious, high-risk offenders.

      1. Sue*

        In our courts, the defendants pay for treatment so it is widely ordered. They work out a payment arrangement with the provider. We keep an eye on the progress but it is preferred over a jail sentence unless the person is not amenable to tx or is too dangerous to release.

  4. Paperdill*

    I’m going to go and google it tonight, so feel free to ignore me, but what does it even mean that pot is legal in some states but federally illegal? Doesn’t that just mean it’s illegal? What is the point of it being legal at state level if it’s federally illegal?
    (I’m not from the US)

    1. AndyTron*

      It definitely is a weird mess, but in general it means local law enforcement doesn’t consider it a crime and federal enforcement has more important things to do with their time than go after pot shops in Seattle.

      1. Zombeyonce*

        That being said, the feds could still raid a dispensary in a state where pot is legal if they wanted to. It also means that dispensaries can’t use banks since banks follow federal law and open themselves up to all sorts of potential problems if they accept money from “criminal” enterprises. It makes it dangerous to own a dispensary dealing with a ton of cash you can’t deposit in a regular bank.

    2. Not A Manager*

      States enforce their own criminal laws. When weed was illegal in most places, usually it was states that would prosecute small drug crimes and the feds would get involved in gangs and criminal conspiracies. Now that a lot of states have legalized/decriminalized weed, they don’t prosecute folks for possession, etc. There are a lot of legal dispensaries, as well, that are subject to state tax.

      But on a federal level, weed is still illegal. That means that the feds COULD prosecute even those “legal” dispensaries. They don’t as a matter of policy at the moment. And they could, if they wanted to, prosecute small users although I don’t know the exact wording of federal statutes. More importantly, if you want a job with the federal government, or if you want a security clearance, you have to answer questions about whether you’ve broken any laws – including federal drug laws.

      1. Kiki*

        Fun fact, in our state (where pot is legalized) the dispensaries are required to pay their taxes to the state in cash. There’s a basement room in city hall full of cash from the dispensaries and it’s all counted down there. My mom is one of the counters! She says she feels like a mob boss but still gets that sweet government pension.

        1. Emily K*

          What’s going on there is probably not that the state requires the taxes paid in cash – it’s that marijuana businesses can’t get bank accounts because it would put the banks in violation of federal laws that prohibit them from providing banking services to criminal organizations. After years of petitioning from those businesses the House just recently passed a bill that would finally give state legal businesses access to banking services, but it has yet to come up for a vote in the Senate. But right now, marijuana businesses forced to operate as cash only businesses out of necessity.

          1. The Other Dawn*

            I’m a banker. Even though medical MJ is legal in my state, we’re federally insured. And most dispensaries take cash and debit cards, but not credit cards. Being illegal at the federal level effectively cuts out a whole segment of potential customers for us. Most banks, including the one I work for, do not want to bank MJ-related businesses due to this conflict. And if they do decide to bank them, it’s a ton of work and they charge astronomical fees to offset all the extra work.

          1. Red Reader the Adulting Fairy*

            pay ’em!

            qz.com/1461947/the-irs-cant-handle-cannabis-companies-all-cash-tax-payments/

          2. Antilles*

            There’s actually a box on IRS forms called something like “money earned through illegal activities” – you’re still claiming it as income and paying taxes on it so you don’t get crosswise with the IRS.
            I have no idea what happens if you put a number in that box though; part of me would assume that it gets red-flagged and passed along to your friendly local police or FBI department, but who knows.

            1. Fun Facts!*

              It actually doesn’t! Not automatically. Unless a law enforcement agency gets a warrant, the IRS does not release tax returns, or information on them.

            2. Flower*

              That’s always my favorite line in tax forms. Drug sales, theft of money, theft and sale of stolen objects, bribes, embezzling, etc… Gotta report that income to the IRS or be at risk of tax fraud. Apparently, they managed to prosecute and jail Al Capone for tax evasion, and not, you know, murder, bribery, extortion, alcohol sales during the prohibition, etc.

        2. snowglobe*

          As a banker, I’ve attended seminars with federal banking regulators, who’ve said that actually they *want* banks to handle those deposit accounts, as it would cut down on criminal activity if the proceeds are not all in cash. But most banks don’t want to deal with either the risks of the regulators changing their minds, or the public perception of having pot dealers as clients.

        3. Jack Be Nimble*

          It’s legal and cash-only in my state (MA), as well! Most of the dispensaries have ATM’s, so you can withdraw cash onsite in order to pay for your goods. It’s really interesting to exist in this legal gray area — there are actual PSA’s that outline where you can smoke and how much marijuana you can have on your person or in your home. The whole thing feels like a strange house of cards!

        4. The Man, Becky Lynch*

          There are now credit unions that allow dispensaries bank accounts.

          It’s paid in cash only because of banking regulations. If they do have accounts in traditional banks, they have and will freeze the funds due to the federal regulations on illegal funds being secured by the FDIC.

      2. RUKiddingMe*

        Also anywhere that gets federal money (contracts, student aid, etc.) it’s illegal even if it’s legal on the state level.

        1. Queen Anon*

          Yes, VA medical providers can’t, to my knowledge, prescribe or even legally suggest medical marijuana in any amount of form. If we moved 10 miles away, we’d be in a different state where medical marijuana is legal. If the VA could prescribe it, I’d do it in a heartbeat so my husband could use something stronger than OTC meds to help manage his severe, chronic pain. As it is, his VA physician told him he couldn’t even use the CBD oil that had been helping to an extent. (I think that’s overly-cautious but not surprising.)

          1. Antilles*

            The 10th Amendment sounds way more powerful than it is.
            First off, there’s a long history of the federal government is to use federal funding as a hammer to get what they want. The closest example is DUI’s. Enforcement of driving laws are managed by individual states. So when the when the federal government wanted to set a lower legal limit for DUI in the late 90’s, they simply added a requirement to the highway bill saying that any state which failed to adopt a 0.08 legal limit would lose federal funding. Legally, it’s not a violation of the 10th Amendment because the states aren’t required to follow it…but it still worked because millions upon millions of dollars is a pretty effective cudgel. There are plenty of other examples too.
            Also, even if it *was* a violation of the 10th Amendment, those cases take years to resolve, which is not particularly helpful to your local dispensary or the guy arrested.

        1. Tica*

          Not true. There are many areas of law where both the state and the feds can constitutionally and ethically make laws covering the same subjects of criminal conduct.

          For example, it’s illegal to have sex with somebody to young to consent. That’s not a federal crime in unless it state lines. Then Bingo!

          However, With drugs You can face both state and federal criminal prosecution for the exact same action. That’s not unusual or wrong

          I am honestly sorry so few Americans understand this but our schools really fail in explaining basically you go and governmental concepts to our citizenry.

          Google Justia + criminal + concurrent jurisdiction

          1. Fikly*

            Yeah, pretty much nothing involving the Constitution is simple, clear, or black and white. Hence the Supreme Court, which involves people trying to figure out what it actually means, and all the courts under it.

          2. Gaia*

            Nothing I said contradicts what you said. I specifically said the feds could prosecute but states would call “states rights.” Whether or not they’d be successful is anyone’s guess. But they’d definitely throw fits.

      3. Third or Nothing!*

        Yep to the security clearance part! My husband works for a large corporation with many government contracts. So, even though CBD is legal in our state (Texas), he can’t use even the medicinal part of hemp because it’s still technically a drug and he would fail a drug test if he took any.

        1. KinderTeacher*

          CBD oil derived from hemp with less than 0.3% THC is federally legal. The legalities of selling it get tricky based on how it is being marketed because then FDA regulations come into play. It is unlikely that use of CBD oil that meets the federal legal standard of 0.3% THC or less could lead to a positive drug test (which only screens for THC), but obviously the only way to be sure it won’t is to abstain completely. Especially given that there is only one FDA approved CBD medication, you can’t point to the clear documentation of a prescription and say there’s your reason right there, the way an individual with ADHD would be able to show documentation of their Adderall prescription when the results come back and whoever ordered the test wants to know why they are positive for amphetamines.

          1. Wintermute*

            they sell “athletic certified” CBD too, which is less than .3%, because .3% will show on some tests. The athletic certified brands are tested to have even less, low enough that you can take it before the game, be tested after, and not show positive . It’s increasingly popular I guess because it’s an alternative to liver-damaging amounts of NSAID anti-inflammatory drugs for use by professional athletes.

          2. Mr. Tyzik*

            Because testing is regulated only at state levels, those hemp-derived oils are inconsistent with how much THC they contain. People test positive on these oils all the time and risk losing jobs. I read an article recently about a trucker who used CBD for sleep, it pinged his drug test with THC, and his job was GONE, just like that.

            1. MatKnifeNinja*

              DOT does NOT play, and either does the insurance companies that work with trucking firms.

              My father was a retired long haul trucker. You basically pretend you are an Olympic caliber athlete and take nothing.

          3. Third or Nothing!*

            I think it may be related to FAA requirements too. It’s aerospace so regulations are super super strict. All I know is he’s been told it’s a Big No-Go.

            1. Close Bracket*

              If he works for a large corporation with many government contracts, he would lose his job over pot use whether he had a security clearance or not. The security clearance is kind of a red herring in the legality of pot. There have always been drug use questions on the clearance form, you have always been required to disclose, and smoking pot is not necessarily going to result in having your clearance denied (although smoking pot and not disclosing will almost definitely result in having your clearance denied).

    3. Grand Mouse*

      Yes, the discrepancy is why (I think apart from safety concerns) I can’t be a pot user since I work in a government building, even tho it is legal here.

      Minor aside, it is ridiculous that weed stays in your system the longest to get caught by drug testing even though it is the most mild and partially legal. There aren’t even clear guidleines for testing howimpaired you are.

      Very impirtant aside, Christmas weed. Hannukah balls and Christmas weed is my new cover band now

      1. Hamburke*

        I actually think that if there were a test for impairment, more states would decriminalize immediately.

          1. Tica*

            Cite please bc Most of the criminal defense lawyers I know take a very different view on field sobriety tests and weed

            1. Yorick*

              It can show if they’re actually impaired, not necessarily whether they’ve recently used marijuana (I’ve read that experienced marijuana users don’t show much impairment)

            2. JB (not in Houston)*

              If you don’t have access to Westlaw or LexisNexis, google scholar is free. I’m definitely not trying to be snarky, but doing legal research is something that people get paid to do, so if you’re curious you should probably just look for yourself. More importantly, if someone cites a case that isn’t applicable to your jurisdiction, it’s not helpful, and since Yorick doesn’t know where you live, they can’t really help you.

              1. Tzeitel*

                This is an unnecessarily rude response – whether a field sobriety test can work for determining marijuana impairment is not a legal research question, and the discussion in my workplace is pretty clear that there is no accurate field sobriety test for determining impairment, and even the ones for alcohol are flawed. So I don’t blame Tica for being curious as to the basis of what Yorick is saying.

                1. Yorick*

                  But Tica seems to be asking about the law, since they are talking about criminal defense atty’s opinions?

            3. Fikly*

              There is also a difference between can this test tell if you are too impaired to drive, and can this test be used in court to prove you were too impaired to drive.

            4. Chinook*

              DH is a Canadian cop and they have been told by a head Crown prosecutor to do field sobriety tests as they did hen the drug was illegal (everyone blows or blood alcohol regardless of why they were stopped) and then call for a blood draw if they suspect impairment not from alcohol. It is fully expected to be challenged all the way to the Supreme Court but, until it plays out, it will get impaired drivers off the street while impaired.

              1. Chinook*

                I also think thta, now that it is legal, it will be easier to develop a test because it will no longer be illegal to test such a test (if that makes sense).

          2. J*

            Field sobriety tests are notoriously unreliable, despite the fact that PDs continue to adore them. They’re a joke.

            1. MatKnifeNinja*

              If you are driving, and get pulled over for suspension of a DUI, and refuse the field test, in my state your license is automatically suspended, and you get driven to the jail. Then a warrant for “chemical search” is issued.

              My local little penny saver newspaper has the crime report. The police LOVE that RMJ is legal now. They are making up not writing for speeding tickets.

              Most of the stops are someone smoking in their car (dumb), or for a car with a burned out turn signal/expired tabs. Pulled over and refuse the sobriety tests. The nightmare starts there.

              The field sobriety test screens the rich from the poor. To fight a DUI in my county starts at $15K. The person with someone will fight it, and get it thrown out. Person working paycheck to paycheck is really screwed.

      2. Just Another Techie*

        Yes, and it makes me super nervous, because cannabis is legal in my state, and my upstairs neighbor smokes it. A lot. And we don’t have good isolation of ventilation between our apartments. I have a security clearance, and I have this horrible anxiety that I’ll fail a drug test one day because of basically second hand smoke.

        1. Penny Parker*

          Get an air purifier. I know someone who did fail a drug test due to second hand smoke. He lost his job.

          1. Penny Parker*

            Will you get legal advise if someone’s bar-b-que smell is entering your apartment. An air purifier is needed; that is all.

            1. Blueberry*

              I was thinking of the job-related aspect (if there’s any way to document this, etc, to prevent losing the job), not of going after the neighbor in any way (but I probably should have specified).

        2. Close Bracket*

          You might lose your job, but it’s unlikely that you will lose your security clearance. That’s the kind of thing that you should disclose if you are tested, and you might have recourse to dispute the result. I have friend who had a job offer rescinded over a positive drug test that actually was the result of a lot of poppy seeds. He got the job offer reinstated.

          Re: Your security clearance — if you have any contact with your neighbor, you could consider disclosing that, since that might be seen as contact with a criminal element, although if he’s never been arrested, it might not, since he’s not actually a criminal until he’s convicted. Your security office will tell you whether you need to officially disclose or not.

        3. Starbuck*

          Pretty much every rental place is going to have a policy against people smoking in the unit, especially including marijuana. You might also talk to your landlord about fixing the ventilation.

    4. Gaia*

      States enforce local laws and the federal government enforces laws that deal with issues that cross state lines or involve constitutional rights or other areas that they oversee. So if a state legalizes pot it is legal within that state but you can’t take it into another state (even another state where it is legal) because that crosses state lines and therefore becomes federal territory.

      It is a weird jumbly mix and creates havoc for these businesses because banking is federally regulated so (at least at first) they literally could not have bank accounts. We just need to legalize on the federal level.

      1. Scared cat*

        This is wrong. The federal government can regulate anything that impacts interstate commerce, which includes anything that is sold nationwide and some of which crosses street boundaries.The federal government could choose to prosecute anybody using or selling marijuana, even if that person never crossed state lines.

        Saying that marijuana is legal in a state is just saying that the state can’t prosecute. The federal government could still prosecute. As a practical matter, the federal government won’t prosecute but they do have the option.

      2. Not A Manager*

        Federal drug laws apply even when you haven’t physically transported the drugs over state lines. It’s true that if a state legalizes pot “it is legal” TO THE STATE within that state, but it still isn’t legal to the federal government within that state.

    5. Reality Check*

      @Paperdill I don’t really get it either. But technically, the States set their own rules, as long as they stay within certain parameters ( they can’t deny any rights outlined within the Constitution for example). This is stated in the 10th Amendment for example (see the 9th Amendment also). The duties of the federal gov’t are listed in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution. In theory at least, the States and the feds are supposed to stay out of each other’s way.

    6. Perpal*

      I think it means feds can still seize your property for suspected “drug dealing” then liquidate it for profit (see “civil Forfeiture”) if they notice for some reason
      It also means weird things if you’re a vet with chronic pain; VA is not down with medical marijuana

    7. MK*

      I don’t competely understand it either, but I think it is a consequence of the discretionary power the prosecutors have in the U.S. and other jurisdictions, so while the federal authorities could prosecute, they choose not to (In other countriew, like mine, the prosecutor is obligated to start the poenal process when it comes to their attention that a crime might have been committed, so this wouldn’t be possible.)

          1. Reality Check*

            If you are prosecuted at the state level and then the federal level for the same action, the term for that is double jeopardy.

            1. Scared cat*

              This is not true. The federal government and state government can prosecute for the same crime. It is not often not done because it would be a waste of resources, but has been used sometimes.

            2. kittymommy*

              I’m not a 100% sure but I don’t think that is true. I believe that as the federal courts and state courts are considered separate judicial systems, one can face charges for the same crime both at the federal level and the state level.

            3. So long and thanks for all the fish*

              That actually depends on the state. If I remember correctly, New York recently changed their law to basically declare it not double jeopardy to try in state court something that had already been tried in federal court, in case a certain president of ours pardoned a certain associate of his for federal crimes of which he had been convicted.

            4. Wintermute*

              Nope, dual sovereigns doctrine says you can be charged by different “sources of jurisdiction” for the same exact crime. So federal and state can both have a go at you.

              yes this is moronic. Yes this is plainly unjust. Yes, it’s often used to take another run at someone that people think “got away with it” especially if they can justify it as a civil rights case… but it is the law.

            5. Mpls*

              Nope – double jeopardy is trying someone for the same crime twice. A crime is based off of a specific criminal charge, so since you can have both federal criminal law and state criminal law, those are separate crimes, based off of the same underlying action. That’s because dual sovereignty (state sovereignty and federal sovereignty) is a key exception to double jeopardy in the US.

              There usually isn’t a point in prosecuting the same crime at both (waste of resources) or there might be jurisdictional arguments for prosecuting in one vs the other, but that doesn’t make it double jeopardy.

            6. Penny Parker*

              Not correct. The ruling came from the U.S. Supreme Court in Gamble v. United States. One can indeed be tried for the same crime both in a state court and in federal court.

              1. Reality Check*

                And the Supreme Court never makes a mistake, right? I’m sorry but I’m standing by what I said. The definition of double jeopardy is crystal clear and there are no exceptions to the 5th Amendment. Well Paper dill, looks like we all gave you plenty to research, have fun with that :)

    8. Quill*

      Essentially: in states where it’s legal it may be used and possessed, but is not supposed to cross state lines into any state where it is not legal. If it crosses state lines it becomes a federal problem, rather than a state one, so actually it’s probably not supposed to leave the state where it’s legal, period.

      In order to get permits to use it for research you have to jump through state AND federal hoops and keep it in a safe.

      1. DCR*

        This is not true. The federal government can regulate anything that impacts interstate commerce. The federal government could bring charges against somebody for drug possession even if they did not bring the drugs across state lines, they just choose not to.

        1. Quill*

          Interesting. I was under the impression that states legalizing it actually did anything at all to make it legal to possess.

          1. DCR*

            In the eyes of the state, it’s not legal. In the eyes of the federal government, it’s not legal and state laws do not impact that. In effect, everyone using using marijuana in states where it’s legal is just relying on the fact that the federal government has other priorities.

    9. The Gollux, Not a Mere Device*

      From different angles, there are different points:

      One is that this is a step toward overall legalization–if the federal government legalized marijuana right now, it would still be illegal in many states, and “but the feds don’t mind” wouldn’t prevent a prosecution under state or local laws.

      Legalization also means the states can regulate the industry. What I’m buying from a legal store in Seattle or Boston has labels about things like THC content, and (at least in Massachusetts) has been inspected for things like mold content. And it will actually be marijuana, neither oregano or with other drugs mixed into the cannabis. They’re also hoping that it will reduce the amount of marijuana going to teenagers, since the legal stores are checking IDs for age, which a street dealer wouldn’t care about.

      Legalization lets the states collect taxes on marijuana sales. Anything you buy at that store in Boston includes a 20% state excise tax.

      [This is probably not a complete list, just bits of what I remember from the discussions in Washington and Massachusetts.]

    10. Adric*

      The simple answer is that the US Federal Government lacks generalized police power. That is reserved to the States.

      The US Constitution in Article 1 Section 8 lists the powers of Congress, all Federal laws need to be based on one of those powers. Because of this, most ordinary crimes–assault, theft, murder, etc.–are not Federal offenses.

      The States are considered to be fully sovereign entities, with the exception of specific powers granted solely to the Federal government (diplomacy, military governance, inter-state commerce, etc.), as such they have the authority to make and enforce any law they deem fit.

      Drugs specifically, are regulated at the Federal level based on the power to regulate inter-state commerce. Most drug companies (even illegal ones) cross state lines, and the distribution certainly does. However, the practice of medicine is left to the States and medical licensing is handled at the state level. In addition to their general police power, that gives States the authority to say that any particular substance or practice is legal or not.

    11. MoopySwarpet*

      To add to the fun confusion that is specific to marijuana in the states, even in many states where it is not legal, it has been “decriminalized,” which means that you can technically still get in trouble (usually a misdemeanor and fine), but if you have less than a certain amount, law enforcement is not likely to waste their time writing a ticket.

  5. MMD*

    OP 1: managerial boundaries. Your report is very lax and casual with you. And none of your reports should be gifting you.

    1. Tau*

      I think this is assuming facts not in evidence. Bosses and employees can (I might argue should) have a relaxed, casual relationship with each other. Having a good rapport with a direct report, as the OP put it, is a good thing! And although it’s true gifts should flow downward, I’m fairly sure Alison has mentioned in the past that it can be hard as a manager to get employees to adhere to that.

      It’s a real reach to take “a direct report wants to give me an inappropriate gift” and extrapolate that the OP is a bad manager. Especially when we’ve had multiple complaints in the updates the last few weeks about the comments section reading things into a letter that weren’t there.

      1. kittymommy*

        “And although it’s true gifts should flow downward, I’m fairly sure Alison has mentioned in the past that it can be hard as a manager to get employees to adhere to that.”

        Seriously! I have been trying (at my bosses encouraging) to get department directors to stop bringing in individual Christmas gifts for my bosses. It has yet to work.

    2. EventPlannerGal*

      I know that the gifts-flowing-downward thing is a big thing on this site, but it’s not so universally accepted that the OP needs to be scolded about boundaries. It might not be ideal, but it is pretty common in many offices and doesn’t necessarily mean they lack boundaries elsewhere.

      1. Queen Anon*

        I agree. Except for very small (e.g., sole practioner attorneys) in 35 years I’ve never worked anywhere where people weren’t expected to either contribute to a gift for their immediate supervisor or buy at least a token gift for them, for both boss’s day and Christmas.

      2. Anonymous Poster*

        I agree. Gifts-flow-down-only seems to be the norm at my job, but it’s not been like that everywhere.

      3. fhqwhgads*

        But in a context where the OP is basically asking “how do I make this not happen” pointing out that it “shouldn’t” is a help way to go. So even if in that company gifts regularly do flow upwards, leaning on the notion they should not is useful.

    3. I Wrote This in the Bathroom*

      I didn’t get the “very lax and casual” vibe from this conversation. It is legal where they live, so it’s a conversation on the same level as if it were about alcohol or nicotine use. I can easily imagine a conversation with any of my bosses, present or past, where they’d ask me if I smoke cigarettes, and I’d tell them that I used to, but quit. Nothing overshare-y here. And the part about the gifts has already been covered downthread.

  6. MMD*

    I would have called the cops on anyone punching me in the throat followed by screaming obscenities. What a mess. Poor coworker. He should have to face legal consequences. I’m betting he gets away with everything.

    1. Ice and Indigo*

      That could have unpredictable consequences for his wife that the letter writer might not be willing to risk without talking to her first. I agree the guy belongs in prison, but let’s not blame the letter writer for being shocked and concerned and not sure what to do for the best. You may not be blaming them, of course! But as to what any of us would have done in that position, I think it’s really hard to know how you’d react in the moment until it actually happens, and very few people react by the book. :-)

      That said, LW, if you do call the police – which you have every right to do – maybe check with a domestic violence line first if you should do it without consulting his wife so it’s harder for him to blame her? Or just for general advice. I’m so sorry you got hit.

      1. Pony tailed wonder*

        Is it possible to get the police involved long after the punch happened? I thought you would have to call soon after the assault and get photos of your throat right afterwards.

        1. RUKiddingMe*

          Hit send too soon.

          Pictures don’t matter. The degree of injury doesn’t matter. He punched her. Period. That’s assault.

          1. SweetSue*

            You are absolutely right. No doubt assault. I have alot to consider as do the rest of us on that bus. Such an awful situation for anyone but especially for her.

            1. Ms. Ann Thropy*

              If a stranger had done the same to you, would you have filed a police report? Probably yes. This guy is dangerous and should be held to account for that assault on you. I am sorry for his wife and whatever she may be going through, but my sympathy for her does not make me inclined to let him off the hook.

            2. I woke up like this*

              Please consider calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline before reporting to the police. Law enforcement involvement can escalate domestic violence at home, and I imagine the counselors at NDVH will have guidance on how to pursue healing for the harm done to you while working to keep your coworker safe.

              1. soon*

                Outsiders are limited in what they can do to keep domestic violence victims safe. I think OP is being asked to overthink all of this. Her not filing charges isn’t helping and abuse is known to escalate regardless. It would be helpful to send coworker “Why Does He Do That”, one of the best books written about domestic abuse. An abuse should not be allowed to extend their abuse, with absolutely no consequences.

          2. Faith*

            That’s battery. Assault is the threat of physical harm. Battery is the actual act of unwanted offensive physical contact.

            1. Yorick*

              It’s assault in many jurisdictions, and probably both assault and battery in jurisdictions with separate statutes.

        2. Alice's Rabbit*

          While the exact amount of time varies from one jurisdiction to another, I know in my state you have up to 4 years to press charges for assault. Pictures of injuries are helpful, but not strictly necessary, especially if there were witnesses to the event.

        3. Tica*

          Yes. You can go to the cops years after an assault.

          The key questions are: Has the statute of limitations run? Will the witnesses have accurate memories?

          In this case, it’s clearly no and yes to these questions

      2. Avasarala*

        Agreed. I would want to see him punished/get help but I’d have trouble separating it from the coworker. I can’t help but feel for her how mortifying and scary that must be, to find out that your husband is capable of such violence, or to have others find out… I would be very concerned for her if this is how her husband can be. Let’s not forget this started because her husband was fighting with her (and after everyone had a nice time, in public).

        1. Quoth the Raven*

          Let’s not forget this started because her husband was fighting with her (and after everyone had a nice time, in public).

          This in particular concerns me a lot, not because it is her fault at all, but because he can easily blame her for his own behaviour and its consequences.

            1. Marthooh*

              But also, if nothing comes of the incident, he may decide his behavior was considered acceptable and tell his wife so. And he would have evidence that this kind of behavior leads to no consequences for him. If you press charges, there’s a public record showing that he is capable of violence. There’s no reason to think the company will somehow fix this; they may ban him from company outings in future, but they’re more likely to leave it to you to decide whether to involve the police.

              There isn’t some right thing you can do to keep you coworker safe or make her husband behave! This really sucks all around, and it’s not fair that you have to make a decision that may do harm whichever way you decide.

              1. kittymommy*

                Agree. If there is violence in the home and his wife decides to pursue charges (or has filed past reports), a report of the person committing assault on a third party could help her later on.

          1. soon*

            He’s already blaming her, that’s part of the psychology of abusers. Not calling the police does nothing to help OP’s coworker.

      3. SweetSue*

        That is exactly how I felt. I have NEVER been in a situation like this and was surprised at myself for not reacting to him physically and that my husband showed great restraint. I do want to talk to my friend. I truly believe any physical retaliation in that moment might have caused more serious injury to someone and made it even worse.

        1. valentine*

          was surprised at myself for not reacting to him physically and that my husband showed great restraint.
          This works in everyone’s favor. Your coworker’s husband was the clear, and only, aggressor.

          I do want to talk to my friend.
          I wouldn’t do this if you’re considering filing a report because they can turn it around and make you the bad guy. You threatened her job if she wouldn’t conspire with you to make legal trouble for him and/or you are lying because you’re in love with him and angry he doesn’t reciprocate. Your coworker has to take his side, so, assume what you say to her about the incident is the same as saying it to him. You’d do well not to promise her anything, like that you won’t press charges. Should he do something else to an employee, especially on the property, your employer may want you all to then press charges for the original incident as well.

          You also have the option to discuss it with your supervisor and/or HR so they can bar him from the property and future events.

        2. Bagpuss*

          I think it is a good thingthat netiher you nor your husband retaliated – it makes it much more clear cut froma legal perspective, and stopped it from escalating. It may not have been a conscious choice, but if you had had time to think, you would probably have made the same decision.

          I agree with the posters saying it would be appropriate to report it to the polie – you were the victim of an assault and it is totally appropriate for you to report it . I would not speak to your coworker ahead of time, you don’t want to put her in a psotion wehre she feels she could have prevented it.

          if you want to tell her after you report it, then by all means do that. That way, if she is worried that her husband will react badly / blame her she can take steps to protect herself as necessary, inbcluding staying away from home if she wishes.

          Similarly, as it was on a work reated outing I would tell your boss or HR that you have made a report, so that they are aware of the situation, but again, treatit as keping them in the loop, not asking or needing permission. Encourage your husband to report the assult on him as well.

        3. Dr. Pepper*

          We often hear about the “fight or flight” response, but it’s actually the “fight, flight, or freeze” response. Many, many times people will freeze. Sometimes this is a good thing, like here, where retaliating in some way would very probably escalated the situation into an out and out brawl. There’s a reason the military and police have drills. People have to be trained to overcome that freeze response in stressful and extreme situations. Everyone likes to talk about “well if that happened to me….” but the key word there is *if*. Until you’re there, you don’t actually know, and likely as not- unless you’ve specifically trained otherwise- you’ll freeze.

          1. KoiFeeder*

            There’s also the fawn response, which if my memory serves is relegated to social stress; basically trying to appease the stressor to make it go away.

            (Also, for what it’s worth, we don’t really live in a society where an instinctive fight response is safe, much less helpful. Not in my experience, anyways.)

        4. RUKiddingMe*

          Keep in mind that if this is how he is willing to behave in public *at his wife’s work thing* how he behaves privately may be much worse.

          Filing s police report, that the coworker has no control to stop may be doing her a huge favor in terms of getting free.

        5. Observer*

          Honestly, I think that the OP should NOT talk to her coworker.

          This person is a threat to others at this point. Also, if the CW says “Call” he WILL blame her, which means she probably will say “do not call” – which does not mean it’s the best thing. On the other hand, if she doesn’t know anything about it and he STILL blames her nothing that the OP can do is going to keep this from escalating anyway. Because he’s going to blame her for the bad weather too.

      4. Morning Reader*

        My head is featuring frightening echoes of “Look what you made me do” with this story. Even though it’s been 40 years since such words were directed my way. Proceed carefully.

        1. soon*

          Yeah, but OP isn’t married to the abuser and cannot live her experience for her. Sorry for what happened to you.

      5. Minocho*

        I had something like this happen between a friend and my brother when they were both guests at my house, and the shock and concern for the friend’s wife both made reacting in the moment difficult. Heck, my brother apologized in the moment, even though he was the one getting punched! I ended up asking my brother if he wanted cops involved, and he didn’t. My friend was never invited over to my house again.

        But reacting in the moment in these situations can be tough.

      6. J*

        Fiat justitia ruat caelum. If the attacker’s crime has negative consequences for the attacker’s spouse, that is not the victim’s problem.

        1. EPLawyer*

          Not a problem but something a compassionate person would take into account. If he is criminally charged what might he do to his spouse for “allowing” her coworker to press charges.

          This is how he is willing to behave in public. He is highly likely to be worse in private.

          1. Lkr209*

            While I agree, to an extent, the reality is, as a woman (although not excluding men), I think most women would be very cautious of possibly putting the innocent wife in a path of husband’s retaliation towards her or her kids. Abusers will say anything to justify anything. Unfortunately I can easily see husband knocking the crap out of her or kids, blaming her for LW’s pressing charges. Doesn’t make sense, but domestic abusers don’t need their justifications to make sense. Would I WANT to press charges and lay the justice hammers? Absolutely. That was my first reaction reading the letter. But not until I knew for a fact that LW was safe, which, given her husband’s comfort with public verbal fights and assault, she’s probably not.

          2. soon*

            Allowing this man to be consequence free for rampaging in public isn’t helping his abused wife. Some men do curtail at least the worst of their abuse when faced with legal consequences, where perhaps they are compelled to enter treatment programs. I can’t believe the commentariat’s fear-based responses to the abusing bully. Where is the line? What if he had stabbed the OP, or given her a black eye? Should she still not report the assault?

            1. Yorick*

              The fact is many people don’t really care to press charges for something like this. I wouldn’t tell OP not to if that was what she wanted, but I would tell her not to do it if she just means for it to be a way to help the coworker.

            2. Zombeyonce*

              I’m with you here. This could definitely make it worse for the wife, but this might also be the only path to helping her in the long run that the OP can take. Anecdotally: a friend of mine has an abusive ex-husband. He’s on his 4th wife and he’s gotten custody of some of his kids with no problem because there are no police reports about any of the abuse he inflicted on all of his wives (they are all in touch with each other so we know they’ve all experienced it). They were all too scared to ever report him and now he can hurt his children with impunity, too, because the law has no prior record of how dangerous he is.

            3. Avasarala*

              I don’t think the line depends on how badly he injured OP, but how likely we think he would injure his wife. Personally I would be more concerned about the coworker’s safety than justice for me. So I am interested to read others’ responses on the best way to handle DV from the outside, as it were.

        2. The Gollux, Not a Mere Device*

          Justice even if the heavens tremble, maybe. Law enforcement even if the heavens tremble, no.

          An outcome where the attacker has to spend a weekend picking up trash next to a highway (“community service”), or spends a night in jail, and then goes home and abuses his wife, perhaps because he believes it’s her “fault,” doesn’t seem like justice, nor like it would benefit the LW’s spouse or coworker.

          1. Kt*

            But *if* he’s an abuser, he’s going to abuse anyway. This path of, “oh, if you don’t make him angry he won’t hit you” is a lie.

            1. Observer*

              Well, there is no “IF” here – we know that he’s abusive. The only question is how bad it is so far. But, you are right – what the OP does is not the thing that will make it escalate.

        3. Observer*

          If the attacker’s crime has negative consequences for the attacker’s spouse, that is not the victim’s problem.

          Legally? for sure? Morally, it’s a lot more complicated.

          I happen to think that at this point it’s not a real issue because ultimately, nothing the OP does or does not do is going to make his REASONABLE. And unless he’s FORCED to behave in a decent manner or his victim escapes, there really is no way for the OP to keep him from being abusive.

          But that’s different from saying “I don’t care about the consequences of my actions on innocent parties.”

      7. Penny Parker*

        Your attitude of not filing a report due to possible consequences in the future is allowing the abuser to hold everyone hostage.

    2. ThisColumnMakesMeGratefulForMyBoss*

      Dealing with an abusive spouse is tricky. If OP reported him, they could make things A LOT worse for co-worker. Even if OP were the one to press charges, the spouse would blame and take it out on co-worker. I’m not saying he should get away with it, but it’s a situation in which to tread lightly and if you have no experience with an abuser, it’s best to go to the resources Alison suggested to figure out the best way to handle it.

      1. Jaybeetee*

        One other aspect to consider is it could possibly *help* the wife long-term, if she ever tries to leave, wants to press charges for a separate incident, or wants to get a protection order. If there are already reports against him, it’ll be easier for her, and consequences could be more severe for him.

        But yes, in the short-term it makes the wife’s life harder. Abusers have a remarkable way of deflecting responsibility for their actions.

        1. ThisColumnMakesMeGratefulForMyBoss*

          Which is why I suggested looking into the resources Alison suggested before doing anything. In this type of situation, you need advice from people who deal with this type of thing regularly.

      2. soon*

        It takes little to nothing for abuse to escalate, it usually does. Everybody commenting here should read “Why Does He Do That”, and then comment. Nothing OP does or doesn’t do will impact the level of abuse her coworker may be experiencing. I am not going to allow myself to experience violence at the hand of any coworkers husband, that is a hard no.

        1. ThisColumnMakesMeGratefulForMyBoss*

          I never said OP should do nothing, but it’s never as simple as “I’m going to report him and let the authorities deal with it”, especially since OP seems more concerned about her friend than herself.

    3. soon*

      MMD, I agree. That ahole would not get away with assaulting me. I feel sorry for his wife, but allowing this cretin to assault her coworkers isn’t going to help her.

  7. Sue*

    No, you can report it later. There are a number of witnesses so it wouldn’t be a difficult case to prosecute. As I said above, in our courts, it wouldn’t normally result in a criminal conviction unless he has a violent history but would require he get an alcohol evaluation and anger management treatment all of which might be of help to his family.

    1. Rikki Tikki Tarantula*

      I’m going to pitch it to Hallmark in time for next year.

      It’s Christmas, and a workaholic bureaucrat returns to her small hometown, which is in a state where weed has just been legalized. She’s just there to enforce regulations, but the dispensary owner looks like a bearded Chris Evans and just runs the dispensary so he can help little old ladies with bad rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia find some pain relief. Soon the bureaucrat and bearded Chris Evans are enjoying walks in the park, snowball fights, and kissing under the mistletoe. Complications ensue in the third act when, on Christmas Eve no less, her old flame from high school (Edward Norton with some CGI de-aging) punches one of the dispensary employees (Jason Mewes); the ensuing fight knocks a little old lady into the shelves of bongs. Bureaucrat and bearded Chris Evans take the little old lady to the ER, and while they wait discuss their relationship and the true meaning of Christmas and weed legalization. Little old lady is fine and bureaucrat and bearded Chris Evans live happily ever after. Also with a “Gift of the Magi” subplot for two of the supporting characters.

      1. Daughter of Ada and Grace*

        I was dubious at Hallmark, but intrigued at bearded Chris Evans. I was sold at Jason Mewes.

  8. SweetSue*

    Well…it is definitely a very delicate matter. I thought to call her but was afraid of his reaction to even that. And of course his public display of anger and his very weak punch to my throat, though it knocked me down) meant he had some level of control because in that raging state he actually didnt hurt me but intended to move me. The awful rage toward his wife was witnessed and heard by all. I know everyone saw me slip sideways. She (my friend) caught me to break the fall in tears. My husband, standing behind me, didn’t realize he had ‘assaulted me’ and thought I simply slipped as the bus was moving. His anger was over how badly this guy was treating his wife. We all tried to casually intervene without drawing more attention to it but nothing short physically removing him to the front could de-escalate his rage…and even then he remained angry. I plan to followup today delicatelu but with intention with my friend. In that moment, with her in tears, apologizing and crying, my only thought was for her and how much I loved her. It is very sad. So we’ll go from there. I appreciate all of your input. None of us saw that coming! Thank You!

    1. Harper the Other One*

      SweetSue, one resource you can suggest if she seems like she is concerned about his behaviour towards her but doesn’t know what to do is a new app called VictimsVoice. It allows people to record and store information about abusive/frightening incidents in a way that’s legally admissible in court across the US. It’s also a web-based app so there’s no visible icon on her phone/computer that he would see. It would allow her to document if she wants to, without acting on it right away.

      I don’t think you should lead with it but if she says that things happen at home and she is scared but she concerned about going to police/leaving him, it can be a good option for her to collect evidence in case she wants to take that step on the future.

        1. valentine*

          his very weak punch to my throat, though it knocked me down) meant he had some level of control because in that raging state he actually didnt hurt me but intended to move me.
          This is frightening.

            1. SimplyTheBest*

              No it’s not. It’s an incredibly important thing to recognize that abusers are not out of control. When people say “he got so angry, he just lost control and hurt me” – that’s rationalizing behavior. I used to work with DV survivors and they would say things like that all the time until it was pointed out that he “lost control” but he only hurt you not himself. He “lost control” but he only managed to break your things not his. Abusers are 100% in control of what they do.

            2. Jules the 3rd*

              Yeah, what SimplyTheBest says. Knowing that someone’s really in control and chooses violence *anyway* can be really liberating – it puts the responsibility for bad behavior squarely on the bad actor.

        2. Harper the Other One*

          You’re welcome! I hope that you are able to provide some comfort for your friend – this must be so hard for her.

        3. EPLawyer*

          DO NOT USE THIS APP. Sure it says its legally admissible in all states, but I would not trust that. It;s like Legal Zoom says its forms are accepted in all 50 states. Sure, because the clerks accept anything. Doesn’t mean its right or does what you want to it do. I would be be very leary of anything that says it can be set up for any particular state, given the mishmash of privacy laws.

          Contact the DV Hotline in uour state. They know better than anyone what should be done.

          If he was so angry he had to be physcally removed by much larger people, don’t be hard on yourself you couldn’t de-escalate it. he was beyond a reasonable approach to the situation. Right now, focus on aiding your friend who may just need someone to say “I believe you” to help her get out.

          1. Tica*

            This is def not legal in all party consent states. Not only is Recording without consent in admissible it can be criminal in some situations.

            Please don’t take legal advice from apps!

            Either call a DV line or speak to a local lawyer.

            1. BethDH*

              I was unfamiliar with this app and looked it up and “record” here means general documentation — time stamped record of what happened, people/witnesses involved, etc. So it seems like more of a hidden controlled entry diary. Not recording as in camera/voice of the abuser. I’m assuming that makes a major difference in legality — is there a reason why that would be illegal?

          2. BrotherFlounder*

            (Tech lawyer here.) Not a fan of their terms of service or privacy policy in this context. Notably, nowhere do they claim that your information will actually be kept confidential – they actually state the opposite. They also reserve the right to sell aggregated anonymous information to third parties. Both are fairly standard from an Internet-based service these days, but both are worrying in an app that’s specifically designed for victims of abuse.

            And if the worst happens, and the victim designee is trying to get your information from the app, they have to renew the subscription if it’s expired to do so. Really?

              1. tangerineRose*

                Or better and safer – create a private hotmail account where she can write up what happened and e-mail it to herself.

      1. Batgirl*

        I think the offer of subtle resources and help as a choice is very powerful because it puts the co-worker in charge and in control.
        As the expert on her situation I’m sure one of the concerns she is going to have is well intentioned meddling or pressure.

      2. Venus*

        I don’t agree with using this app, however I have often been told to document everything, so it might be worthwhile for you (and anyone else who was a witness) to write down what they remember of their experiences. When I was harassed by another employee I wrote it up in an email to my boss, so that we would both have time/date documentation of the event that couldn’t be altered (so it was officially on record somewhere). In the end I didn’t pursue anything as it didn’t make sense, but years later I am still thankful that the situation is on record so that if the person does something similar then I can point to my experience. I started my email with “This is to document the event of (date) in case I need to remember the details in future” so the purpose was clear.

        Even if you take months to decide what to do, I would encourage you to write down what happened now. Maybe email it to a friend if they know about the event and if you aren’t comfortable sharing with your boss, although with so many witnesses I think that keeping it within the workplace would be a reasonable option.

    2. FiveWheels*

      My experience of domestic abuse is that “rage” is behavior that’s very much in control, so it doesn’t surprise me at all that he pulled his punch with you.

      He became aggressive at his wife’s Christmas party – ie something that will have a big negative effect on her but minimal on him. It’s (not at all) amazing how domestic abusers manage to behave well when it suits them, and “lose their temper” when it will harm their spouse.

      1. Baja*

        YES. Just making a scene of any kind in front of a partner’s management and coworkers is a manipulative power trip and arguably in itself abusive — it not only embarrasses the partner but potentially jeapordizes the partner’s job/career and reputation, and I really think that’s sometimes part of why abusers do things like this in public when logic says they’d go out of their way to hide such behavior.

        1. FiveWheels*

          Embarrasses her, makes her feel powerless in front of feet colleagues, gives him a reason to blame her for ruining a lovely time (“look what you made me do!), jeopardizes her employment…

          In short, it contributes to isolating her and convincing her she’s helpless, which is the most fundamental play in the book.

          In her position I wouldn’t want the police called, because he’s not going to jail for it and all it will do is give some overwhelming evidence that the police can’t help her.

          That’s a separate calculation from the colleague or her spouse calling the police, so I’m not saying don’t do it.

          (I’ve been in more than one physical altercation that was completely unrelated to abuse, and unless I had a serious injury I don’t think I’d call the police over this… But it’s a completely personal decision)

        2. RUKiddingMe*

          And if she loses her job he has economic control of her. Part and parcel if the whoke domestic violence thing.

        3. Jules the 3rd*

          Seconding all of these – social isolation, undermining economic independence, yes yes yes.

          Sounds like the best present is _Why Does He Do That_ for the office…

        4. Lora*

          +1. My ex acted like an embarrassing a-hole at a company holiday party, insulting my boss and colleagues, acting generally like a douchebag, being obnoxiously rude and announcing to the entire meeting room that I worked with a bunch of nerds he wouldn’t be caught dead with if I wasn’t forcing him to go to this party thing, what kind of party doesn’t even have weed, hur hur hur. When I told him I would never bring him to any event again where he would embarrass me in front of my colleagues, he was FURIOUS…even though he had openly snarked about it being absolute torture to spend two hours in their presence and complained loudly about how much he hated them all. Cue multiple accusations and frequent fight-picking that I was only leaving him out of work event invitations because I was secretly screwing the boss so I could duck my way to the top.

          Five months later, he had escalated to coming home coked up, screaming abuse, throwing me into walls and kicking me. One of the points the judge made to him was, this is your first offense in this courtroom: if there is so much as a traffic ticket that brings him back, he would be deported and banned from re-entry. So, I think in the long run you’re better off creating the paper trail needed to document his behavior. That way he can’t plead that it’s a one time thing, it never happened before, he’ll be a good boy from now on. Assuming, best case, his wife is able to leave him and gets a restraining order, she will also have a paper trail showing what type of manipulative a-hole he is. I think you should assume that he very much WILL escalate, whether in response to the police visiting him, or because the New York Giants lost, or because he hates Wednesdays. But definitely call the abuse hotlines.

      2. Elenna*

        This! He was in control enough to not hurt OP despite punching her in the throat, but he just couldn’t control himself enough to, I dunno, not scream profanities at his wife’s coworkers? Sure. Suuuuure.

      3. pentamom*

        I once heard someone make the point that abusers don’t (usually) beat down their bosses, or other people who have power over them or whom they want to impress. That’s a pretty good indication that the degree of self-control they are capable of is itself within their control.

    3. Detective Amy Santiago*

      This is such an awful situation and I am sending good vibes to you, your husband, and your coworker.

      One other thing that I want to point out is that I hope your management/HR doesn’t attempt to penalize your coworker for her husband’s behavior. Interfering with their victim’s employment is a classic abuser technique. It might be worth a quiet word to your manager, coworker’s manager, and/or HR to ensure this doesn’t happen.

    4. BRR*

      I’m so sorry this happened to you and that you now have some difficult choices to make. There’s a lot here that frankly I don’t know how I would handle and don’t know how what advice to give but at the minimum I would report it to your employer. If you do it in person, make sure there is some sort of written documentation which might be you following up with an email cc’ing a non work email (and I’d give a heads up like “I’m going to sum up our conversation and will send you an email of it).

      I’m inclined to say you should report it to the police as well. It sounds like between your letter and responses that you’re sort of downplaying his actions. You did nothing wrong and he is the sole person responsible for his actions.

    5. Lives in a Shoe*

      SweetSue, I think on some level you may be beginning to rationalize this. It’s very common and normal, but please don’t allow yourself to trivialize or downplay his behavior in ANY way. He knew what he was doing. Every. Single. Moment. Yes, your friend is embarrassed and yes she’s in danger, but so were you. If you don’t press charges you will become just one more person who helped him hide his behavior perpetuating the cycle. Domestic violence is complicated, painful and difficult for everyone involved, but you need to file charges not only so that he will have a record of violence on file with the authorities WHEN (not if) something happens in the future, but also to protect yourself. Even minor damage to the throat can be fatal. What if he’d hit you just a tiny bit harder? What if you’d fallen and hit your head? What would your family do without you? Please think about these things. Maybe if you speak up he’ll be forced to get the help he needs. Maybe your friend will get the help or wake-up call she needs as well. I speak from experience and my heart does go out to you.

    6. Libervermis*

      SweetSue, you absolutely have the legal right to file a police report against this guy, but from years working in sexual assault/domestic violence advocacy, I recommend talking to your friend and following her decision. People who are in abusive situations (and the husband’s behavior is setting off all kinds of warning bells for the reasons other people have mentioned – the fact that this happened at her work party, his ability to control the physical manifestations of his “drunken rage”, etc) are the experts on their situation. She’ll have a much better sense than you whether her coworker filing a police report is likely to trigger violence against her.

      Perhaps more importantly, giving her the chance to make that choice is empowering. It may not feel like it, especially if she doesn’t want you going to the police, but it gives her agency in a situation where she likely feels powerless. That itself counters the messages she’s likely getting from her husband that her judgement can’t be trusted.

      Ask how she’s doing, point her to domestic violence resources, tell her you’ll support her decision. And chat with a domestic violence hotline yourself, for more specific advice about what you and your husband should do.

    7. Anal-yst*

      Bystander intervention is super hard, not remotely as easy as it looks virtually, is something that there is specific training for and it’s laudable that you tried to de-escalate. This is not an easy thing to do.

      There isn’t one Right way to respond either in the moment or in following up.

      I’d like to suggest though that you do get in touch with a DV or crisis response hotline so you can get support processing and determining next steps. These hotlines aren’t just for people in the thick of it. People supporting or seeing concerning behavior/situations may also utilize them. They’re people trained in crisis response to appropriately provide the level of service you need. That might be talking you through next steps, directing you to appropriate resources, or providing psychological first aid depending on the situation.

      I hope things look better for you and your friend soon!

    8. fposte*

      I appreciate the concern for his spouse. However, his spouse isn’t the only person he’s hurting, and I hope the employer is making sure he’s not allowed on the premises to hurt other employees, either.

    9. Lazy River*

      SweetSue, I posted this above, but I really hope you will talk to some experts about the best way to help your friend and address the situation generally. If you’re in the US, please call the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-7233.

    10. Night Heron*

      If you decide to not pursue a legal route, the first thing that came to mind is (and I admit this sounds a little weird) to write down your recollection of what happened and sign and date it in the presence of a notary so it has an official date. The other witnesses can do the same, put it all somewhere safe and let her know about it should she decide to pursue action against him at some point (divorce, criminal charges, etc). As jobs change, people move, time passes etc, it becomes harder to collect that evidence when she may need it most. Better to write it all down now and make it official when everyone’s memories are fresh.

    11. Observer*

      meant he had some level of control

      That makes it worse – anger management courses etc. are not going to cut it. The only thing that MIGHT help is knowing that he faces consequences. Beyond that, the only thing that will help is her getting away from him and him being prevented from getting to her.

      Not reporting is not going to move either scenario forward.

    12. Penny Parker*

      Do NOT talk with her in order to keep her out of it. This is between you and the man who assaulted you, and anything else is enabling the abuser.

      Yes, it may indeed get worse for her. (it probably will anyways, abuse escalates) Maybe the situation getting worse is what will get her to take action to protect her own self.

      By going to the police you accomplish a few things: 1) You create a police record that this man is violent even at a public event in front of witnesses. This can be quite important in the future.

      2) You set an example that the proper response to abuse is to report it to the police. Failure to report to the police sets the example that it is okay to be abused, and it is too “scary” to report it. This is a downward spiral.

      3) Reporting it to the police keeps you from enabling the abuser. It takes you out of the helpless by-stander role which all abusers use to keep on keeping on with their abuse.

      By not reporting it you actually become a part of the abuser’s pattern of abuse. It allows him to state that his behavior was okay. Do not enable the abuse; report it without involving your coworker.

      1. A.*

        Thank you. I am really shocked by all the comments discouraging the OP from reporting it. If OP reports the crime then maybe the police will believe her coworker if she reports violence at a later date because there already has been a record established.

        Also if I am assaulted, I am pressing charges. I’m not going to allow my assault to go unanswered because the person who assaulted me may go home and take it out on his wife. I refuse to live my life in fear.
        Why are we walking on eggshells around this guy?

        The company also needs to ban him from the premises because he is a danger to be around. I would look into getting an order of protection so if he decides to come to the office, I can call the police to have him removed and charged. The coworker is trapped in the cycle of abuse. You are not. So don’t enable him. It is interesting he exchanged words with your husband but chose to punch you in the throat. He did it because he knew he would get away with it. You husband may have punched back. But with a woman, he knew he had the physical advantage.

        He could have done serious damage to you. Don’t reward him because he failed to punch you hard enough to really hurt you. But it was hard enough to knock you down so it was not just a little tap.
        Take steps to make him face consequences for what he did.

        1. Indigo a la mode*

          I agree with everything you’re saying, including that she should report it. Absolutely. But I think the answer to “Why are we walking on eggshells?” is pretty obvious: We don’t want him to kill his wife. You don’t live in fear, but I bet OP’s friend does. Your question is a little too cavalier; there is actual risk to another person involved. Justice needs to be served to this man on multiple fronts here.

  9. hillrat*

    I worked for 25 years at a university, where sweeping department reorganizations were common in the larger divisions. Every 3-4 years, a new division VP would come in and reorganize everything and everyone (especially when a new chancellor was named, which would always result in “regime change” on the order of a presidential election). People’s titles would change, the names of the departments would change, people would be assigned to new duties, and your supervisor would change frequently (and sometimes your official supervisor would be someone you would never have much contact with or assign you any work).

    As a result I wound up with a hodgepodge of job titles, my duties changed every 3-4 years, and when I left the university to find a new career, I found it extremely difficult to construct a resume or tell a coherent story to outsiders about my increasing level of responsibility at the positions I worked at for over two decades. I also had the sort of job where a wide variety of top execs knew my work and relied on me to do things, but none of them were my actual supervisor.

    I did it somehow, by dividing my experience up into chunks that reflected my major duty changes, but my resume looked pretty strange and I always felt unhappy about it.

  10. Thankful for AAM*

    Re domestic violence.
    There must be a local DV shelter or other victims services, call them! They will be experts in local laws and services.

    I hope they will encourage your company to call the police if anything like this should happen again and they can give you direction about what to do now.

    Above all, the embarassment the LW felt is part of why women stay, as though this is something private and personal and should be hidden. Religious beliefs can be private, abuse is not private or embarrassing. Everyone sweeping it under the rug on the bus contributes to some women feeling like it is their embarrassment and their fault.

    Please put call the police in your head as a script next time.

      1. Thankful for AAM*

        Yes, great point. The largest percentage of DV victims is female but men are also victims, as are children. There is often shame and embarrassment for any victim and we should all work to push against that.

            1. Yorick*

              Right, but minor children of the couple aren’t choosing to stay in or leave an romantic relationship, which is what Thankful for AAM was talking about.

  11. yokozbornak*

    OP1 – Does your employer have a drug policy? Most warehouses do as part of their safety program. This would be a fireable offense at my workplace as per policy. To protect your job and the job of your employee, nip this gift in the bud ASAP.

    1. Emmie*

      You’re right about the work drug policy. The manager is charged with enforcing and modeling those policies. So, she has to say something ahead of time.

    2. Oh So Anon*

      This is a good point. Even in jurisdictions where pot’s totally legal, lots of employers have no-recreational-pot-on-premises regulations, so even showing up with some packaged and gift-wrapped bud would be a fireable offense.

  12. [insert witty username here]*

    Fellow gov’t contractor here. For OP#3, I set my resume up very similar, but I put company #2 (aka, the most recent one) first, then the older one. Small tweak, but then it stays in the more conventional format of reverse chronological, so the resume reader’s eyes see the most recent company first. But all grouped under the same program/job title.

      1. hermit crab*

        Very common! You can get situations where basically the whole team goes back and forth, depending on which company holds the contract. It’s a kind of ridiculous system, but people who work in those industries won’t bat an eye at a resume like OP 3’s.

      2. That'll happen*

        Absolutely! My mom worked for the federal government for her entire career her contractors were a part of the team, often doing the same job as federal employees. The only difference was where their paychecks came from. Sometimes they would miss out on a couple of weeks of work when dealing with the process of joining the new contractor.

      3. OP3*

        Hi I’m the letter writer,

        I’m still new to it but from what I’ve been told they’re right in saying this is very common. Also I was asked by the new company to apply. Apperantly they usually try for that first before recruiting from outside since it saves time and money.

    1. Mockingjay*

      Yep, this is what my resume looks like. I like to say, Government contractors follow the work, not the company!

    2. Junior Assistant Peon*

      From the perspective of the person looking at your resume, I really don’t care which temp agency you were technically an employee of while you worked at Company X.

    3. OP3*

      Hi,

      I’m the original letter writer, I’m still new to government contracting so still learning. Thank you for your response, I think the tweak you mentioned combined with the advice is something that I’ll try. Would that be how it would work on social media sites like linkedin or just for resumes?

  13. J*

    OP1: You need to be concerned about your reputation. Even if you don’t use the drugs, word will get around. Inevitably, you will be confronted with a situation in which someone important hears, “Of course Bob uses pot! Jimmy from sales gave him some last Christmas.” And if the listener isn’t sympathetic, you could be in hot water. It sounds as if you are not in an industry that strictly controls that sort of thing (I work in a field where drug use is completely forbidden, for safety and ethical reasons). Nonetheless, you can’t control how gossip will spread or predict who might hear about it, so you might want to think about your reputation now and in the future.

    1. Junior Assistant Peon*

      If you’re in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, etc, no one will give a shit. It’s pretty much the same as having a glass of wine after work.

      1. Observer*

        That’s not really true – there are industries where marijuana use is still a problem. Sure, most people won’t look down on them as a “pothead” or whatever. But in terms of employment, it can still be a problem.

        1. Indigo a la mode*

          This. It might be legal, but I think there’s still a connotation of immaturity or incompetence that accompanies recreational drug use. Kind of like that letter Alison answered awhile back about smoking being bad for your professional image.

    2. goducks*

      There are a bunch of states where it’s been legal for quite a while that literally nobody cares. In fact, we are seeing time and again companies dropping pre-employment drug testing because they cannot find people who can pass a test that includes cannabis.
      It’s so incredibly normalized in many places.
      Frankly, even pre-legalization pretty much everybody used, or was fine with people using. Doctors, lawyers, professionals of all stripes consumed. Now, you just buy it from a state regulated store, instead of more dubious places.
      And more and more people are using good edibles instead of messing with their lungs by smoking.
      Finding out someone uses cannabis products has become like finding out someone consumes alcohol. As long as they’re not under the influence at work, it’s a nothingburger. At least in a bunch of the west coast legal states.

      1. Curmudgeon in California*

        I am a big fan of edibles. No smoke in my lungs, no stink, and I can control my dose to just the right amount to either knock down my migraine or put me to sleep.

        However, because of various safety regulations, I advise against giving weed or alcohol in an environment where drug/alcohol use is a safety hazard, like a warehouse.

  14. Hiring Mgr*

    #1, you’re right to be wary of this. It could be a federal sting operation directed by the FBI in conjunction with local law enforcement. The employee you know as “warehouse guy” is most likely an undercover agent planted in your company looking to smoke out (no pun intended) the kingpin. You did exactly the right thing OP. /s

  15. Phony Genius*

    For #1, since you have a “warehouse team,” I would assume your employer has a “drug-free workplace” policy for safety reasons. This would likely violate that policy, even if it’s kept in a sealed container. If you have no such policy, the rule of “optics” would still be in play. You should explain that to the employee.

      1. Anonymous Poster*

        Lol.

        I’ve read newspaper articles about the Danger!! of kids getting CBD or actual THC candy on Halloween. (These articles haven’t included documented cases.)

        Nobody’s spending that much money on candy they aren’t eating, I promise. Likewise, I don’t think anyone’s spending that much money on a gift for their boss.

        1. MoopySwarpet*

          I heard a story at a recent family get together about how one person was offered homemade brownies at New Years while working at a restaurant/bar and ate one. It was then told that said brownie eater forgot how to math. Complicating mathing factor was that the business had raised everything by $0.05 for the occasion. Totally unintentionally high server stated only way to add was to use old prices, add everything up, count how many items, multiply by $0.05 and add that on. #originofcommoncore

          This was in the 60s and the person should have known better. Said person also had no problem with being high, just did not mean to be AT WORK and was pissed the brownies were offered without a warning to the content so it could have been saved for not the busiest night of the year.

    1. The Other Dawn*

      That’s my impression, too. I really doubt someone would be serious about buying a coworker drugs for Christmas. I mean, I guess that would happen, but it doesn’t seem likely. He was likely joking.

    2. EventPlannerGal*

      I agree. Even the OP didn’t sound sure if he was serious, and I would be really surprised if he was – at worst I’d guess the OP is going to end up with a novelty bong or weed socks or something like that.

  16. Allypopx*

    I definitely gave my manager some special gummies that she keeps in an oatmeal box in her desk for emergencies. But that was more of a “let’s all do what we can to get through this” thing than any kind of holiday gift.

    I also have a flask in my desk with 100% executive director approval so I probably don’t have the most typical setup lol

      1. Allypopx*

        Hahahahaha we actually may be soon but I would question your judgement as a potential employee if “sometimes we need drugs to deal with our jobs” is the biggest selling point.

        Jk, Jk.

    1. Curmudgeon in California*

      At one IT operations job I was the keeper of the liquor cabinet. We did a Friday afternoon happy hour, and certain incident responses caused the cabinet to be in use. It was a high stress environment.

  17. Stop it with the stigma already*

    OK I’m going against the grain on #1. I think there’s an awful lot of pearl clutching going on here regarding marijuana. OP indicated “it’s legal here” so I don’t see this as any different than the gift of of a bottle of wine.

    My state has legal recreational pot and it’s *100% legal to gift pot* to someone else here.

    Even the title of the letter feels like Reefer Madness – MY EMPLOYEE IS GIVING ME DRUGS. And the comments about the OP’s “reputation”? Let’s just stop with the stigma, can we? Plenty of perfectly “reputable” people enjoy pot recreationally.

    As a card carrying medical user that relied heavily on legal marijuana to get through cancer treatment, I really wish people would stop demonizing legal weed.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      I worked on marijuana legalization for years; I’m certainly not demonizing it! But you’re wrong that it’s 100% legal in any state in the U.S., because it’s still illegal under federal law and people still can and do get arrested for it, even in states that have decriminalized it.

    2. Observer*

      My post must have crossed yours because my post about this is the next one after yours.

      What I posted is that Allison, of all people, is NOT going to clutch her pearls or anything else about this. But she’s a total pragmatist about these things.

      She’s right and you are wrong. He could get arrested, even though it’s not likely. Also, even in states where it’s 100% legal on a state level, it’s generally permitted to have a “drug free” workplace policy that includes marijuana, so the OP’s job could be on the line. In fact, generally employers don’t even have to allow marijuana on the premises for medical use.

      1. Hiring Mgr*

        I mean technically you can be arrested for lots of things that nobody ever gets arrested for… I think it’s EXTREMELY unlikely that a casual user would get arrested in a legal state for mere possession. I live in Mass where it’s legal and have never heard of such a incident…

        If you’re doing something dumb like boarding a plane, crossing a border etc, then it’s a different story.

    3. Allypopx*

      In Massachusetts at least, the “legal gifting” was a workaround for recreational marijuana on the state level before it was legalized. It was never meant to override federal regulation.

    4. Arts Akimbo*

      What comments are you reading that read as pearl-clutching? The ones I’m reading are well thought out and highlighting common employment pitfalls due to drug testing certain professions (jobs which require forklift operator license, security clearance, etc.) which could mean they lose their job even in a state where it’s legal.

  18. Observer*

    On #1 – I think it’s worth noting that Allison is actually in favor of legalizing marijuana. Which is to say that her response cannot be seen as a MORAL judgement, but pure practicality. Which makes it easier to push back. Like if someone has a really serious allergy to something, you wouldn’t worry about turning down a present of that thing.

  19. Lucy Honeychurch*

    I long for the day when weed conversations are just as taboo (as in, not at all) as conversations about having a glass of wine after work. ESPECIALLY if it is legal in your state. I understand Allison’s response, and yes, this is all new, so better to err on the side of caution. The stigma is real. But I think it’s BS.

    Interestingly, I went to a conference where one of the discussion points was legal weed, and the tide is slooooowly turning. It will take a cultural shift however, for companies to stop their ridiculous drug testing for weed. Some folks said that their companies are taking weed out of the picture for drug testing (disclosure: it is legal in my state), but a lot of their high level managers want to hold onto it due to outdated norms and misinformation. Still…a few did say that they were changing to take weed testing out, and agreed that they were viewing it along the lines of “what you do after hours is fine as long as you don’t do it at work and do a good job.” As it should be.

    1. Brett*

      “when weed conversations are just as taboo (as in, not at all) as conversations about having a glass of wine after work”

      You have definitely never worked in local government! (especially any agency that could have a 24/7 emergency response)
      We were random tested for alcohol. I got reported to, and investigated by, the ATF because a neighbor reported me for hosting a charity event where people were allowed to BYOB. (The ATF agent was pissed off on my behalf for having to even do the investigation.) This was only some of the manifestations of weirdness people have about alcohol still.

      1. Lucy Honeychurch*

        Yes, and I have teacher friends who don’t want to be photographed with a beer in their hand for similar reasons. So certainly there are exceptions to the rule, but I think in most industries and for most companies, there really isn’t much of a stigma or taboo about workers going home and having an occasional drink on their own time. That’s my point.

        Oh – and I know several companies that have “beer Fridays” where they bring beer to the workplace on Friday afternoons and allow their workers to drink while on the clock. I worked in such a place myself. Certainly there was this unwritten rule where you stop at 1 or 2 maximum. Can you imagine having Weed Fridays, where you gather and have a small toke? LOL, of course not. We’re not ready, but maybe Gen Z will be.

    2. tangerineRose*

      I’m hoping people give up smoking of any kind (tobacco and weed) so that those of us who don’t want that stuff in our system aren’t breathing any of it in. Please, if you’re going to get high, stick to something that can be eaten or drank (and don’t drive).

      1. Indigo a la mode*

        Same. I’m pretty live-and-let-live, but my tolerance for your hobby/habit ends where my desire to breathe clean air begins. And it all smells SO BAD.

  20. NuclearContractor*

    For employees like OP#3, how do you recommend putting a job history on online applications where you are required to enter an employer and a job description? On my resume, I have my job history listed as you have described, but I’m at a loss on completing the online job applications and feel like it comes across a little odd to list the same job title and descriptions for multiple companies. Especially when I’m applying for jobs in sectors where contracts aren’t the norm and the hiring groups won’t be as familiar with the contracting process. For some background, I’ve worked under three contractors at the same location with the same title and responsibilities.

    1. Mockingjay*

      Use the first line of the description under each job to show the continuity of work. After that, highlight a unique skill or two in each description.

      Job 1, Lead Wrangler, Dec 2016 – Present:
      As the Lead Wrangler on the Llama project, ensure well-being of all animals in each herd. Schedule routine vet care per Llama Best Care Practices. Monitor llama feeds.
      Job 2, Lead Wrangler, Jan 2015 – Dec 2016:
      Previously on the Llama project, herded llamas into rolling green pastures. Ensured sufficient pasturage was available to sustain herd size.
      Job 3, Lead Wrangler, Jan 2013 – Dec 2015:
      Previously on the Llama project, managed a team of 6 wranglers assigned to individual herds. Oversaw herd migrations and pasture rotations. Monitored herd water supplies.

  21. Penny Parker*

    Why wasn’t the violent man in #2 arrested? The employer had to intervene to prevent more violence from happening. If the coworker is indeed in an abusive relationship (and all signs here certainly show that she is) it would help her to report this to the police because she has witnesses to this event. I urge #2 to go report this to the police now. You have been assaulted; this is police business. The man needs to be held in check.

    1. LilySparrow*

      Or it could put her in danger by causing her husband to escalate.

      Depending on where they live, a punch (or attempted punch) that caused no injury, where all the witnesses were drunk, where LW deliberately placed herself in the middle of a scuffle, may not be taken seriously by the police.

      I’m not saying it’s okay or there’s no abuse.

      I’m saying that in a lot of places, this is the kind of situation where if the cops were there, they’d just break it up and tell everyone to go home separately. And without any evidence or reliable witnesses, it’s very unlikely the husband would be arrested after the fact.

      It’s far more likely that a visit & talking to by the cops would piss him off enough to to take it out on his wife. OP should talk to her before involving the police.

      1. Observer*

        No, the OP should leave the wife out of it.

        And it’s a myth that you can keep an abuser from abusing by tiptoeing around him (or her). Abusers don’t need a reason, or even an excuse.

        1. Penny Parker*

          I wish someone had bothered to call the police on my abuser when I was being physically injured. There were no criminal restraining orders at the time, only civil. Would it have made things worse at the time? Perhaps. But perhaps it would have made things worse quickly, instead of the slow “boil the frog” which pattern most domestic violence follows. Making things worse quickly is not such a bad thing if it ends the relationship faster. And, anyways, that is not the OP problem. The OP’s problem is that some man hit her in her throat in front of multiple witnesses. Don’t be co-dependent; don’t be held hostage. Act for yourself.

      2. tangerineRose*

        Even if the police don’t charge him, wouldn’t reporting him mean that it would be on his record? This could be helpful to his wife at some point if she needs to prove that he’s violent.

  22. Spek*

    This is why I just don’t drink at company functions. Too much downside for very little upside. It’s nice the company was cool enough to provide for transportation home, but the one or two people I like enough to actually want to drink with can meet up for a few cocktails after the company function.

  23. lilsheba*

    Honest to god, why do pot heads think it’s a good idea to give that to anyone at work???? I swear that’s all they think about.

      1. Slurablur*

        HAHAHAHA that is the funniest thing I’ve read all morning. But I can easily imagine someone taking you seriously.

        1. lilsheba*

          Mine is not a joke I can assure you. No one should be offering that as a gift at work no matter what. But again those that smoke it or vape or whatever seem to think the world revolves around it.

          1. Anon Head*

            Nah, I wasn’t referring to your comment. I’m a pothead for sure, but I agree it’s not a good idea to give that to someone at work. Too personal, like booze.

            I was talking about the “pothead is a slur” joke. Some people might actually think that’s true, so it’s not really funny.

  24. Blueberry*

    Lazy River posted this in comments, but I thought it would be helpful for it to be top level.

    The National Domestic Violence Hotline

    1-800-799-7233

  25. Brett*

    #3
    Not related to the question involved, but I thought it was interesting that OP could switch companies so easily. We have a major federal agency in our city, and the contract companies here are very aggressive with no-compete clauses to prevent employees from leaving to other contract companies without a significant finders fee. As a result, people are a lot more likely to do a loop into private sector for 6-12 months before switching federal contractors.

    1. EEOC Counselor*

      This is common at the large federal agency at which I work. When a contract expires, if a different company is awarded the new contract doing the exact same work, the new company often hires most or all of the people who were working for the old company. If the agency is happy with the work those individuals were doing, they can usually seamlessly start working at the new company. The lack of transition is good for the agency because the work isn’t disrupted. The old company doesn’t usually mind; they often would have to lay those employees off anyway because they generally had hired them to work on that contract, which has not been renewed. It is hard on the employees, who have to face the uncertainty of not knowing if they’ll be hired by the new company, start over again with benefits such as PTO and health insurance, and negotiate their salary again.

  26. CanCan*

    OP1 – Even if your jurisdiction allows the possession of pot in small quantities, the law may be different where it comes to distribution (including as a gift). For example, the restrictions in Canada include: no distribution to minors, no distribution by an organization (without permits), and no distribution of illicit cannabis.

    Just ask this person not to give you (or anybody else at work) cannabis as a gift – to avoid any potential issues. Also tell him (and others on your team) not to give you any gifts.

  27. WeeeOoo*

    Canadian here, from a very fun and lax office – our secret Santa gift exchange had weed cookies that everyone was trying to “steal” in the game, and after our Xmas working dinner party, my bf gave each of my bosses a rolled joint discreetly and they were VERY appreciative! I guess it really depends on where you live, your workplace, and what feels right.

  28. Rust1783*

    Can I just say that I have no patience anymore for people who say “well cannabis is legal in your state but it’s still illegal federally, so I’d just stay away from that because you might end up in federal prison!” This is kind of useless advice that frankly sounds prudish and unrealistic. You can try to convince me otherwise but it’s just whistling in the wind at this point.

    1. Lucy Honeychurch*

      ?? Rust1783, you are out of touch. Are you familiar with our nation’s drug laws, that until recently were draconian and have improved but are still ridiculous in some place. I am very informed on this issue for multiple reasons and it’s not “useless advice” to warn people that they can STILL get in big trouble. And lest you paint me as one of the prudish folks, read my posts above. I am pro-legalization and anti-criminalization, so you can move on if that’s what you think, but telling people that this is not a good idea in most workplaces is spot on advice, and it’s not because it SHOULD be that way, but because of the way it is.

      Then again, you don’t sound open to knowing much with your “you can try to convince me otherwise” so go on, go give all your coworkers and bosses your good bud and let us know how that works for you. *popcorn*

Comments are closed.