Re: OFF-TOPIC question about an office thing?

Subject: Re: OFF-TOPIC question about an office thing?
From: "Rebecca M. Coplon" <rmcoplon -at- hotmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 15 Jun 2006 12:13:47 -0400

I've been unsubbed from this list for several years, and rejoined just in time to watch this discussion. I'm fascinated by how many people have responded that they have a strong reaction to various types of perfumes and scents. I can't imagine that this list is an unnatural collection of hothouse flowers -- we're probably a very good cross-sample of the working world.

I worked for some time in an office space with a woman who wore Tea Rose perfume, which not only triggers my asthma but also triggers migraines. It's not psychosomatic -- I didn't even KNOW the woman, but her perfume made me physically ill (to vomiting) nearly every single day. I attempted various solutions that I could effect, including moving to a desk further away, and when I was unable to solve the problem on my own, I approached her with it. Fortunately shortly thereafter I changed projects and locations, so it didn't breed too much interpersonal analysis, and I didn't have to be in such suffering.

This doesn't strike me as a sitaution that requires too much effort. I like my perfume, and wear it sparingly, but if a colleague told me that even at a low level it was making them sick, I would change perfumes. It's not THAT important to me. If that colleague couldn't be near any scents at all, I'd suggest that we talk to HR, because it wouldn't just be me that could be causing it, so I wouldn't be able to solve the overall problem on my own for that person, but it might be an actual ADA-related accomodation the company needed to make.

But the very easy first step is to simply change or eliminate the perfume. I don't know if I'd go chasing interpersonal relationship issues unless I knew them to exist independent of the scent issue.

Glad to see you guys again, by the way -- I can't believe I didn't resub before this!

rmcoplon -at- hotmail -dot- com
Rebecca Coplon, formerly Merck

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RE: OFF-TOPIC question about an office thing?: From: Joe Malin

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