Hey Julie, lots of good advice in here, let me add my 2 cents.
First of all, what you are describing is immature he said/she said stuff. It's extremely important that you learn to remove it from your life, it has no positive value whatsoever. Whenever someone attempts to drag you into that you should put an end to it immediately. I don't mean by violence, but by going to the source and calmly clearing the air, and involving any 3rd party that they have been including as well. Let them know that you are above it, that crap is for kids. If Jenny is an evil bitch, that's her business, if your brother is an idiot that's his business, what the 2 of them do in their relationship, that's their business, just keep them both out of your business.
As for the situation at your job, I'm assuming that your boss is older than you are but she is behaving like a child. However, she is still your boss and therefore has authority and perhaps a bit of power over you. Because of this, any kind of confrontation is NOT a wise idea.
What you need to do though is pretty simple. First, let Rachel know that you plan to talk to her. Don't go into specifics on what you plan to say or anything, just that you want to be sure of the situation. Believe me, I know that Rachel is your good friend but the way that he said/she said works, somebody has to be the middle and most likely it is her. She probably doesn't even realize it. The fact that she was the one who overheard Jenny saying something to your boss makes it even more likely. Regardless, it's a bad idea for you and Rachel to talk to your boss together because it will just seem to her like the 2 of you are ganging up on her friend Jenny. Just tell Rachel that you are going to talk to her and IF she feels as badly as you do about the whole thing she probably should think about talking to her as well. 5 will get you 10 that she doesn't.
Then, ask your boss for a private sitdown. Let her know that you have a "concern". When you speak, do not be over emotional. No anger or hurt or frustration. Be calm and professional. Let her know that you had caught wind of a "rumor" that you had been badmouthed by "some person or persons" to her, and you wished to know whether she found your work satisfactory. Do NOT get into or even allow yourself to be dragged into who the "person or persons" may be, they are totally irrelevant. Tell her you have no idea if she insists, it's just that you hate rumors and like to put them to rest whenever you can. Instead, be specific about your work. Let her know that wherever it is unsatisfactory, you will do your best to improve it, and thank her for any complements. Where she is mistaken about your work due to lies told her, correct the mistaken impression but do not worry about where that impression came from. That game is for children and lesser adults than you. Finally, upon finishing, thank her for the talk and ask her to please let you know immediately if there are any concerns about your work or anything else.
Here's what your result will be. More than likely, she will realize that she has been sucked into foolishness that she has no business being a part of, and she will correct it. She will be on-guard against it happening again as well, so busybody Jenny will lose an outlet. Even if she was willingly involving herself in the nonsense, she will now realize that not only do you realize it, but are also above it, and will probably strive to be above it as well, at least as far as you are concerned.
Now, there IS the small chance that she's extremely immature, and a bitch to boot. If that is the case then she will most likely continue with the childish crap. I doubt this will happen, but if it does you will notice it right away when you are having your talk, because she will behave like a schoolgirl instead of your boss, and tell you things about what she heard and what somebody told her and bla bla bla. If that is the case DO NOT STOOP TO HER LEVEL! Follow YOUR game plan and leave the kidstuff to her! And from that point on make sure to document your every move in the job that you can, and everything that she says to you. When the time is right and you just can't stand any more, you are all prepared to speak to HER boss.
He said/she said is childish, immature bullsh!t. It destroys friendships, it breaks up families, and sometimes it even KILLS! Do NOT allow yourself to take part in that crap! Your tactic of not speaking is not much better. All that does is give people reason and opportunity to misinterpret your actions and intentions. If you want people to know what's on your mind, TELL THEM! Nice and calm. Answer their scowls with smiles, their lies with truth, and their innuendoes and intrigues with indifference!
Hope all of that helps, thanx for the votes of confidence Tim and Sweet! :wiggle: