The boss humiliated me in front of colleagues. What should I do?

I am left feeling demoralised after being publicly berated. Am I being too sensitive?

On Friday and Monday we publish the problems that will feature in a forthcoming Dear Jeremy advice column in the Guardian Money supplement, so readers can offer their own advice and suggestions. We then print the best of your comments alongside Jeremy’s own insights. Here is the latest dilemma – what are your thoughts?

Today I experienced something at work that has unsettled and demoralised me. My line manager’s boss, the head of our company, attacked me verbally in front of four other colleagues. My relationship with this individual has always been remote due to an incident that happened quite early on in my employment with the company, when he failed to support me in something. He has an extremely close relationship with my line manager.

Since this early incident I have had a relationship of contrived banter but nothing more. The banter has always been reciprocal (or so I thought) and quite raucous, but today I obviously went too close to the bone in a remark I made about his lack of support as his reaction was adverse to the tone we have always maintained. He furiously warned me, jabbing his finger angrily and saying, “Don’t push me, I’m not joking, I’m serious, don’t push me”, and stormed out. I know enough of his character to know he will never address this incident with me, nor make himself available to discuss it.

I realise that does not sound like much as I relay this, but the essential outcome was that I was left humiliated in front of colleagues as his overt dislike, and disrespect, toward me was keenly felt by everyone. Am I being too sensitive? Should I just forget it and accept his dislike or is it time to move on?

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