When on the job, one can have a lot to deal with. From day to day tasks, to other coworkers and customers, it can very easily lead to a stressful day. Especially, when the one thing that sets them off happens. One comment, word, or action can completely unravel their day. When it happens, it's not pretty.
Workers on Reddit reveal the moment that made them lose it. Content has been edited for clarity.
“The Smug Look Broke Me”
“I was working the drive through at a Kentucky Fried Chicken during the lunch rush. A woman came through with all of her co worker’s orders. She wanted me to take them one at a time. So, she wanted me to ring up nine separate orders for one car while my line backs up out of the lot.
I explained to her numerous times she’d have to come inside, or place it as one order and do the math herself when she got back to her work.
She spent five minutes straight calling me things that would make Tarantino blush, then pulled around to the window, and threw trash from her car at me as she left.
This wasn’t my moment though. The next day I get to work, and the general manager is there. He gives me two options. I ride with him to her work and apologize to her in front of her co-workers, or I am fired. He didn’t ask for my side of the story. It didn’t matter my manager told me to not take her order. It didn’t matter how abusive she was. She called and I was going to apologize. We get there and the smug look on her face broke something inside me. I flipped her off, tossed my hat at him, told them to kiss my butt and went home.
Not even two weeks later the location went franchise and the manager they kept, (the one who told me to refuse the woman), hired me back. Within a few months, I was promoted to a shift supervisor and I was able to send the woman who got me fired a letter of disinvite.”
“It Was Disgusting”
“I was working retail right after high school. This was a minimum wage job ($5.15/hour) as a stockman for a retail company. When I took the job I thought, Stockman was only dealing with the merchandise from the truck to the floor. Turns out, it was a code word for Everything the managers, cashiers and people on the floor don’t do including janitorial work.
It was one Saturday, we were busy, and someone trashed the men’s room. Clogged the toilet, then pooped in it again, and flushed it in the only stall we had. The walls, they had to have taken an ink pen, broke the ballpoint off and let it ooze out all over the walls. It was disgusting.
I was the only stockman on duty, because the store cut everyone’s hours. So my manager told me I had to clean the restroom up real fast, and get back into the stockroom and do the rest of my other duties that day.
I took a survey of that destroyed restroom and told the manager (he was a prick anyways), ‘No. I don’t think we have the tools to fix that toilet and I’m not doing that with my hands and if you tell me to do so I will quit.’
He fired me for refusing to clean it up. The next day his boss, the store’s actual manager (the one who fired me was just a co-manager) told me such clean ups aren’t for store staff, but should have been a call to a plumber. He then added the guy who fired me didn’t actually have the authority to fire me. Then he asked me to come back to work because I was the only stockman scheduled for the weekend, and no one else was either answering the phone or wanting to come into work.
I didn’t go back.”
“All The Coaches Are Running Through The Lobby”
“I worked at a hotel. We were hosting some junior high baseball traveling team. I was in the back folding towels, and saw something weird on the security cameras. Three boys were carrying a roll of towels and looking shifty. They shoved the towels in the trash, and then took off down the hall. I went up to the trashcan to investigate, unrolled the towels, and found an ice bucket from one of the rooms.
It smelled. I knew what it smelled like. But I had to know. So I lifted the lid and sure enough… huge pile of poop in an ice bucket in the trash right next to the elevator.
I called the coach, who was out eating lunch and had left the kids unattended (great idea!) and he lost his mind and hung up on me. Soon, all the coaches are running through the lobby, apologizing and saying that they’ll be right back down with the entire team. Sure enough, within five minutes a very scared looking group of 13 year old boys is in my lobby. The head coach proceeds to scream at them for 15 minutes about how in his 40+ years of coaching, he’s never had ‘a crime so heinous’ committed under his watch.
At this point, I’m actually starting to feel bad for the kids, most of whom are crying. He then made the kid responsible for the poop filled bucket call his parents (on speaker phone so I could hear it) and explain to them, in detail, what they’d done. Poor boy’s dad hung up on him too! Then called him back and yelled at him even more.
Kid then had to apologize to me (written and verbal), all while bawling his poor eyes out. I got him a box of tissues and forgave him. He came down to my desk three more times that night to keep apologizing.
Writing up that incident report for my boss was the most ridiculous thing I’d ever done, and my boss had to review the tapes because he could not believe this was real.
The kids had been pulling pranks on each other all season, and apparently leaving a poop filled bucket in the other kid’s room was the finale.”
“I Could Never Win”
“I was a store Manager for a local franchise restaurant. I was salaried, so it didn’t matter if I worked 35 hours (what I was promised to work) or 76+ hours (what I ended up working). I was hired to run an already failing store, understaffed, failing equipment, all kinds of little things that at first glance didn’t seem like an issue. When I told them I needed certain pieces replaced, they’d send the maintenance guy to slap some duct tape on the problem.
‘That’ll buy us a little time until we can get it fixed,’ they’d say.
Rinse, repeat infinitely. Hiring was a nightmare, because I had no choice but to work the floor, leaving nearly no free time to screen employees and train new hires. My bosses constantly told me to fire this person or that person. Sometimes I would, sometimes I wouldn’t, again. I was almost always understaffed. I needed at least six people each morning and could barely make that happen.
When I didn’t fire someone, I got yelled at.
‘You need to get rid of them and get better people!’ they’d say.
Or when I did, I would get yelled at.
‘Are you stupid?! You’re short staffed already!’ they’d yell.
I could never win. It went on like this for a few months, where I’d have frustrating days and then go home. At least I got to go home. Eventually this devolved into me basically working extreme hours. 12-16 hours a day, literally every day. I went 2.5 months with no day off, covering first, second, and third shifts because all of the other stores in the area had decided to stop helping me fill callouts.”
“I Hear A Crash In The Lobby”
“I used to be a shift manager at a Pickleman’s (hot sandwiches, pizza, soup/ open till 2:30 am) around the University of Missouri. I, unfortunately, had to manage a day shift on saturday during Homecoming.
Shifts during game day are usually crazy busy. Like nonstop, line to the door, an hour wait on deliveries… freaking busy.
At a certain point during the day, maybe like two in the afternoon, three people in their probably mid 30s get food and sit down to eat. And one of the guys is just sloppy trashed. Dropped his sandwich on the way to the table, stumbled back to the register, starts yelling that he needs another sandwich, which isn’t the easiest thing to do when I have a line to the door and a million deliveries to make. I tell him it’s gonna take a minute, dude throws sandwich on the ground and storms off. Whatever I don’t have time to deal with his nonsense.
Like five minutes later, I hear a crash in the lobby, I look up from my frantic pace of sandwich making and this dude threw a napkin dispenser on the ground… now I’m mad and I have someone take over the finishing station (where veggies and condiments get put on the sandwich after it comes out the oven). I go out and tell him he needs to leave. Dude is swaying back and forth like a reed. He’s friends are apologizing profusely, saying they will get him under control and it won’t happen again. They will leave as soon as they finish eating… I should’ve made them leave but I have a freaking store filled with hammered people, so whatever they will keep their friend in check. So I go back to my finishing table.
About a minute later hammered dude grabs, I believe, his friends sandwich and throws it across the room.
I’m seething rage, trying not I scream, dude is just laughing. I had to force him and his friends to leave but the freaking hammered idiot realizes I’m furious, and wants to keep pushing my buttons so he would open the front door and scream then run away….
I called the cops and described the dude and wouldn’t ya know he opened the door to the lobby and spit on the floor as a squad car pulled up. Cops asked if I wanted to press charges, and with a smile on my face, I said yes.”
“It Was A Sad Situation”
“Worked special education in a self contained room. Third year at a school that people move in district from around the world to bring their kids to but underpays their support staff something awful. To the point where three years in I was probably one of the most senior people in the entire very large district. Conversely, I changed districts four years ago, and now am one of the least senior people.
I was working with a boy who I loved dearly in a middle school, but he wore a full head helmet because he went through fits of rage pretty frequently. He had nearly bitten off staff members fingers in some of these rages. I had at this time been working with him all three of my years, had seen a very steady decrease in aggression to the point where I convinced the behaviorist to allow me to remove the helmet and just keep it close by to me anytime aggression started.
This boy also wasn’t potty trained. He had been timer trained every year I worked with him. By the end of each year, he’d be on hour long timers with no accidents for weeks. Once we sent him home for the summer, his mom wouldn’t bother with it, and we’d have to start the next school year all over. Legitimately she was terrified of him, it was a sad situation.
One day he comes off the bus smelling completely like poop. It was clear that his diaper was soiled and some ‘brown marks’ around his body made it very clear mom sent him like this and it didn’t happen on the bus [mostly because he had shoulder restraints on the bus due to his aggression]. Took him into the bathroom to strip and clean him up when it became apparent that he was pretty much covered head to freaking toe in poop. What made it worse is that while I was doing my best to clean him with wet wipes, he decided to go full on hulk mode and try to attack me.
In the end it took me and my boss to deal with the situation. One of us distracting and wrestling his hands while the other did their best to clean him, took an entire box of those diaper wipes to do so. The school had showers, it was a middle school, and we could have blocked them off from other kids to use them. But, the behaviorist decided against it because, he felt that if we did this mom would take it off of her ‘list of things to do’ and expect us to shower him every day. To recap, I spent an hour of my life cleaning a teenager head to toe of poop while he spent the hours trying to eat me.
At the time, I was making about $15/hr in an area where it’s impossible to live off that much. I was also at the ‘max step’ in terms of salary for my position. I also had no health benefits. By contrast, the new district I moved to afterwards started me at $23/hr with full benefits.”
“Ambulance Is On The Way”
“I worked as a busser at a club on the corner of Hollywood and Vine. Wild place to say the least. They gave us each ear pieces, because it was impossible to talk in person (loud music, hordes of people yell-talking). I was so low in the pecking order, my name was never called over the channel.
Late into a shift, I hear my name. ‘Could you…uh…proceed to the women’s restroom. Bring a mop and lots of towels.’
So, I get ready and start wheeling my mop bucket towards the ladies room. There’s a HUGE line of hammered girls in their tiny dresses doing the pee dance. The restroom door is wide open.
So I go in.
First, there are girls lifting up their dresses and sitting in the sinks, peeing. They’d scuttle off, and the next girl would do the same. When you gotta go, I guess. Second, there are three security dudes just standing there, including the security lead-a 6’6 behemoth named Miracle. He points me to the one and only stall.
‘Ambulance is on the way,’ he said.
There’s a girl passed out on the floor. She had hit her head on the toilet seat, so there was blood on her, the floor, and the toilet. There’s vomit spray-painted all over the wall and her dress. Her chest was heaving, breathing heavily.
‘She’s okay. Just clean,’ I was told.
Okay. So, I start mopping around this girl. I was worried, so I bent down to see if she was okay. Then she gurgled, and launched another volley of puke.
Finally, paramedics showed up and they pushed me out of there. Thank freaking god. Right when I leave, I hear my name a second time, instructing me there was an urgent need to clean bodily fluids in one of the VIP rooms.
I cleaned it all up, took my tips, and quit.”
“Ask Someone To Hand It To You”
“About seven years ago, I worked at a McDonald’s. The assistant manager had it out for me. I came to learn she had a reputation for picking one person, and making their life an absolute nightmare. I wasn’t overly good nor bad at my job, but she would (I kid you not) stand behind or near me, and wait for me to mess something up so she could publicly berate me.
The last straw was one day when I had just gotten off the clock, and I had family from out of town in the lobby waiting for me to grab my schedule for next week so we could leave (we were headed out to dinner, it was a nice get together we had planned). After we were off the clock, we were no longer allowed behind the counter. So after five minutes of loudly trying to get the attention of my coworkers (who were talking and just generally messing around), I leaned over the counter to grab the paper, myself. It was only barely out of my reach, and I didn’t have trouble getting it after leaning over.
Seconds later, having apparently been observing my struggle, she walked up to me and said, ‘Nobody wants to look at your butt, next time ask somebody to hand that to you.’
I never went back to that store. Had I been a little more mature and experienced in life, I would have sued the heck out of that place for harassment. Too late, now, but that was inappropriate as heck. I hope the next poor soul she targeted actually did take legal action.”
“Won’t Be A Problem Anymore”
“I used to build pallets. Not your typical 40″ x 24” pallets either. I’m talking 35′ long x 8′ wide made completely of 4x4s and 2x6s. These take almost a full day to make depending on the size. Anything 18′ and shorter I can crank out in about two hours. Anything longer, and there’s more to be done to reinforce it, so it won’t crack in half under its own weight.
Anyway, my work is very unorganized. They love making promises to customers that they can’t keep. So here I am, working five 12 hour days plus a half day on Saturdays, for the third week in a row. My manager comes up to me on Monday near the end of my shift. He hands me a list of six pallets to build, only one under 18′. I tell him, sure, I can get that done by Friday.
He says, ‘No we need that by noon tomorrow. Can you work late?’
I’m genuinely stunned for a few moments, and I tell him bluntly, ‘I’m going home. Get me a raise and I can keep working twelves. Otherwise, I’m going back to tens.’
He says, ‘Well, I’ll see what I can do.’
‘Sounds good,’ I said.
Next day rolls around and no raise. Management says they’re having issues with my attitude.
I tell them, ‘Won’t be a problem anymore. I’m putting in my two weeks. You might want to get a replacement carpenter soon.’
Starting a new job soon, and I’m very excited.”
“Have To Be Gold To Work”
“I worked in retail that catered to a wide variety of…lower class citizens. The store was centered at a crossroads, where all the poor communities of different groups would come in. Most were nice people, but all the awful were condensed into this area.
This one insane old man came in yelling at me to help him buy AA batteries. Okay, he’s annoying and loud and crazy, but batteries are easy, right? Just buy them and get out. Well, he insisted the batteries had to be gold to work. He showed me his batteries, which were some off brand ones that happened to be gold. To be certain, I gave him the batteries that had the same type of metals, but it wasn’t gold. He kept saying it wont work and they had to be gold, and I promised him that…no. They didn’t.
So he leaves his old batteries, tells me to throw them out, and leaves. Fine, in the garbage they go and he leaves.
An hour later he returned, yelling at me that ‘I knew the batteries had to be gold, I want a refund!’
Well, open batteries can’t be refunded, but he shouts enough for the manager to just be like ‘Ok fine, here’s your 3 dollars back.’
After that, he demanded I dig his batteries out of the garbage for him.
‘You threw them away?! Why would you do that?!’ he screamed, as I try to remind him he told me to.
He just kept shouting at me to get them.
I usually did a ‘kill them with kindness’ thing in retail. I don’t try to fight back, at worst I just say ‘I’m sorry,’ until they leave, because it uses the least energy. But this GUY just stared me down, expecting me to dig through the garbage.
I said no, and walked into the break room. My manager didn’t even confront me. I think because after I walked away, he dumped the garbage on the floor and dug through it and got his batteries (He could only find one) and left. No one asked me to clean up the garbage, because the management knew that was some stupidity. But they were cool and I knew the stock room guys (who were also really cool) would’ve had to clean it, so I just swept it up.”
“He Just Refused To Listen”
“I am currently training a 40-something year old man (I’m 26) at work. I have a training background and have trained new hires from ages 18 to age 50. At this company, I’m not in a training role, but was asked to do so for our newest teammate. He has been with us almost three months (we all got trained within a few weeks) and is still making mistakes on 85% of the things he touches.
We have had many people work with him and tried many different approaches. I found out yesterday he’s been blatantly lying about making corrections on the things he messes up on. He just refused to listen. He also has terrible social skills; he comes to ask me questions immediately after taking a bite of food, coughing and sneezing on me and others without bothering to cover his mouth or turn away, and if I have a bag on my desk, he always grabs it and looks in it. I do NOT get paid enough for this stupidity.”
“She Started Screaming At Me”
“I worked at a gym, and was given a task to cut the locks off of unpaid lockers. I didn’t finish my task before people started coming in, and a woman came into the locker room right when I was cutting her lock. She started screaming at me that I was prejudiced, then emailed the vice principle of the gym about the HORRIBLE thing I did to her.
After this happened, the general manager called me in to his office. He said he was going to put me on a week’s paid leave. I said fine, but I’m never cutting locks again and I refuse to interact with that member ever again. Thankfully they recognized she was nuts, so they agreed.”