I wanted to post this story especially because I have been here before and so have a lot of people. Sometimes you just can’t stay at a job no matter how much you want it to work. When you reach that breaking point though and have to leave, there is a massive struggle to recover. I know that first hand. The rest of this post is written by an anonymous submitter who granted me permission to submit her story. I haven’t changed any word she sent me.
I stepped away from a job several months ago because a troubled, unhappy co-worker was making my daily life hell. I let her problems become mine, instead of brushing off her anger. Leaving was a stupid decision – I know that now.
I have never had trouble getting interviews before & typically get an offer if I get an interview, but all that has changed & I’m not sure why. I’ve had a couple of interviews, but mostly I’ve had phone screens. Every one of these left me feeling we would move forward to an offer. They tell me all the right things – that I have what they’re looking for in terms of qualifications, credentials and attitude. Then, I either hear nothing or I get a polite note saying they’ve decided another candidate is a better fit. The sheer law of averages should have worked in my favor at least once.
One recruiter was so adamant about moving forward that I was sure I would get the interview and the offer. He said he would have the security officer call me to prep me for the clearance process (as this job called for getting a clearance). The security person called just a few minutes later & started by asking for my birth date, including the year. I didn’t feel I could decline since I knew a clearance would require that. The next day I got the brush off e-mail. I couldn’t help but feel they used that tactic to get my age & then I was out. My age is just a number and belies all that I have to contribute.
My best theory is that they are finding younger & cheaper candidates. (I’ve stressed that money is not an issue, that the right position is most important, but so far it has not helped.) I am a high energy, reliable employee, but I’ve somehow ended up without a paycheck & it feels awful.(My husband joked that maybe the troubled co-worker had black-balled me but I’m not that paranoid & she could not have that kind of power.)
I’m grateful my husband has a good job, but I want to contribute for at least another decade. I’m doing volunteer work at our local library – it feels good to be needed – but I’m a highly qualified administrative professional. I can’t believe there’s not a company out there that will give me a chance to show I’m still capable.