I have been working in a US worldwide multi national company for 15 years without a blemish or stain on my character. I am highly regarded as a professional and expert in my field, and have many accolades on my file from individuals I have assisted over the years, including one from our former General Manager.Three months ago a US HR Director came in and basically has taken charge. We don't really know him and he doesn't really know any of us. He does not consult or communicate with any of us and is making changes and decisions which affect all of us. He has already told me that I am defensive, purely because I was protective of the position I've built up over my career. Frustration and upset has been building since he came in. Last week I had a meeting with a project business manager that I have built up a very good relationship with over the past year or so. During the meeting he told me that the US HR Director had agreed to let my assistant go and support his project. I had not been privy to any such arrangement or asked if I could spare my assistant. This was the final straw and, very unprofessionally I admit, I let slip the "F" word. I apologised immediately, saying it was very unprofessional of me. The Business Manager thoroughly understood my frustration, accepted my apology and said it was understandable given the circumstances and he also apologised for telling me. Our meeting continued for a further 15 minutes or so with no further reference to the matter. 24 hours later, I was called in to the HR Directors office to be given a verbal reprimand for using foul language in front of the BM, that it was unprofessional and he would not tolerate such bad language being used by any of his staff, no matter what the circumstances, ever again. I said that I didn't think I was the only employee out of 650 who had ever let this word slip out and and he said "yes you are". Apparently the Business Manager had gone to the Project Secretary to say that he thought he'd put his foot in it and told her what I'd said. She told him to go into her boss who is a US VP and our General Manager (a Brit) was there and heard everything. I was told to be dealt with. This US HR guy made me feel like a 5 year old (I am in my early 50's)and I told him that, in 15 years, this was the first time I'd ever done anything like this and that I felt everyone had over reacted and that it in no way needed to be brought to the attention of the General Manager. I spent most of the afternoon in tears, but completed my contractual hours, and most of the weekend tied up in knots with tension, anger and frustration. I tendered my resignation on Monday, stating that I felt through the actions of others, there is now a blemish on my character and that my reputation has been sullied to the extent that I can no longer look these Managers in the eye. I could not continue with the company with the feeling that my every comment, action, behaviour was under constant scrutiny. The UK HR. Manager who was present during the reprimand did nothing to protect me or support me, and he has known me for 15 years. I told them I had my pride, which is why I'm leaving. I was speaking with my friend who does employee relations, and she thinks I may have a case for constructive dismissal. There is no Policy in our workplace against swearing which is a surprise as there is a policy for almost everything else ! Do I have to fall on my sword and bow out graciously, or have I got a case to pursue? Comments anyone please.