DEAR ABBY: Something happened at work that has me traumatized. I work at a retirement house for a convent. The nuns are sweet, kind and easy to get along with. But last week while I was using the bathroom, a nun decided to be a Peeping Tom while I was on the toilet. She laughed at me in a taunting manner saying, "I can see you!" I screamed at her to stop, but she just kept looking and laughing at me. When she finally left, I was in shock.
I reported the nun to my supervisor as soon as I could, but later in the day I was still so humiliated and upset that I ended up having an anxiety attack. I can't stop thinking about it. It left me feeling disgusted with the nun and with myself.
I want to report her to the police, but I don't want drama at work. This is my only source of income. I need my job in order to provide for my kids, but I no longer feel comfortable working in a place where there are perverted nuns who don't respect people's privacy.
What do I do? I'm confused and angry, spending my days in my home crying and contemplating whether to file a police report. Please give me some advice. -- TRAUMATIZED IN THE EAST
DEAR TRAUMATIZED: I hope you realize that the behavior the retired nun exhibited is that of a 4-year-old. She may suffer from dementia. While the woman may have had good judgment in her younger years, clearly she does not now. It may be the reason she is living in that retirement community.
I'm curious about how your supervisor reacted when you told her what happened. If you cannot move beyond the trauma, talk to the director of the home and ask for counseling so you can regain some perspective. Filing a police report may not be the way to go.