Monday, August 19, 2013


So most of my friends know I work for a law enforcement agency. I have had a lot of experiences there, both good and bad, but currently I am in an office and enjoying my surroundings. I have made a lot of friends in the office both with the clerical staff and with some of the officers. Which is where things get a little tricky (for me anyway, it comes easy to some others)

I have always been taught to respect those in authority. I have always felt that a doctor should be called Doctor, and an officer should be respected as such. If I am at church people are Brother or Sister, and in public if I meet someone they are sir or ma'am. When I meet a friends parents I call them Mr or Mrs, etc. So naturally at work I want to say "Officer So-in-so" and frequently do. But there is where the problem begins. As I have been making friendships and as I know them outside of work to some degree. We're friends on facebook etc sometimes I struggle between calling them Officer so-in-so vs their first name. Especially when they're in uniform.

For me I would think that when they're working etc I should call them Officer, and if I am maybe outside of work, then I can call them by their name. The funny thing is some of the officers that have desk positions I see more regularly at work so they're almost like other clerical personnel in the sense I see them frequently. So sometimes I say their name, sometimes officer. Then there are the ones working the road that I typically don't see as frequently. One of these officers came in one day near the end of his shift and I had a question for him regarding one of his collisions he took the report for. So I went into the report room and said "Officer    
such-in-such" and asked my question we talked about whatever it was and I said thank you and as I was leaving he said "and it's Bob (name changed to protect officer such-n-such's identity)" I felt kind of bad as if I had offended him by greeting him as officer.

I know that they work hard and have been thru a lot to receive their badge and position. Especially since I spent 3 weeks at the academy and saw what they do for 27 weeks! Then in their jobs, they risk their lives daily not just for my sake but everyone's. It is a huge responsibility and I think they deserve to be addressed and recognized for that, especially on duty. So it's a struggle for me sometimes. There is a fine line between using their name and officer. Maybe this isn't a struggle for others as much as it is for me, since I hear others call them by their given name on a regular basis. I had one coworker say to me that for her she tries to use officer when in front of the public but otherwise uses their name. Which makes sense but sometimes I still don't want to say "George", or "Charles" (*also fake names used) or whatever their name may be. It's awkward for me, unless we're not at work, then it doesn't feel as weird to me as when they're dressed.

Anyway maybe I am just being silly, and maybe if you're one of the officers I work with reading this and you have a comment feel free to share it. Or tell me what you think at work. But if I do ever call you by your first name it really means I am comfortable with you as a friend. and I am either not itimidated by you (also why sometimes I want to use Officer) or you caught me off guard where I lost all respect for your authority (just kidding) Well that's my thoughts for now! 

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