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by Abigail Van Buren

Son Is Gone but Not Forgotten After Leaving Clothes Behind

DEAR ABBY: I was diagnosed with celiac disease 13 years ago and have followed a strict diet since. In the past, I didn't tell my co-workers because food wasn't part of the job. However, I am now in a small department and we travel, so I have disclosed it.

My boss constantly harasses me for not eating any of the junk food he brings in (or why I don't eat all of the food when we eat out). I decline politely, but he keeps coming at me insisting that "it's OK to eat" and says I should just eat it because it won't make me sick.

I have pulled him aside a couple of times to explain celiac disease and provided him with good articles about it, hoping that reading them would have a bigger impact than my explaining. He has made some comments about how his wife follows "fad diets," and he thinks they are all crazy. I have explained how a restricted diet is the only treatment for celiac disease, but he is unrelenting in his harassment.

I don't know what my next step should be. I love my job, but this is getting in the way. -- UNSURE IN WYOMING

DEAR UNSURE: Your boss's behavior is beyond inappropriate. What he is doing could be considered bullying. The kind of stress your boss is creating makes people sick. If the harassment doesn't stop, talk to HR about his creating a hostile work environment.