Aaaaaand – action!
My legs hurt, my brain is overheated and I feel remorse, shame and some kind of blues. I went to a job interview today and the second to last question was you’re not married are you? He was trying to get a glimpse of my ring, I was waving my hand in a silly gesture and answering chipperishly – No!
I. Feel. Fucking. Awful.
This is not the first time I’ve been asked this, in a way or another. It’s not legal and it’s frowned upon, and they still have to ask. In doing so, they blame me, they shame me, they make me responsible for everything related to infants and getting them over the age of 12.
The last one was far worse. They were offering a steady job, no strings attatched, and they made snide remarks on why I should be wanting a steady job. Yeah, I’m such a bitch aren’t I, for wanting a job that isn’t going to pull a rug under me the minute anything happens. For wanting a work place that’s a bit committed to me, too, not just using me for what I’m worth and then tossing away.
Why am I solely responsible? I have a desire to answer that Oh, yeah, I have a couple of kids but my boyfriend is a stay-at-home-dad and I’m the career woman. It just plain baffles me that they still expect me to do all the work for reproducing, caring and, in a larger sense, also for growing us new tax payers we cannot survive without. They make me feel awful for being a woman, for wanting a family, for not being entirely about the work I’m applying for. They are accusing me beforehand.
This time it was different. Because I think I’m pregnant. I don’t know it yet, though! My period is a week away from coming, so I’m not even late yet. Still they managed to put me in a fucking basket-case loony desperate state. Why is it all my fault? Why am I the bad one here?
The message they send (and all the people talking about women who just want permanent jobs so they can screw their employers by leaving for paid maternity leave) is that I’m just so fucking selfish if I want kids. I’m allowed to want them, carry them, care for them, but only if I stay out of civilization. It’s unsightly to breastfeed or change diapers in public – yet there usually aren’t restrooms for that either. There is no alternative, no 4 day work week or 5 hour work day that could help people with small kids. No. If you’re so fucking selfrighteous, stubborn and selfish that you absolutely will have to get pregant – then stay at home! Leave the providin’ part for your husband.
Aaagh. I’d rip my hair and clothes and throw my things on the street if it would help any. But nothing is changing. Nothing has changed.
All the men I know have permanent jobs, decent salaries, a possibility to get promoted, if they’re not still studying. All the women I know are freelancers or have a 2 to 12 month commitments, and that’s it. Do you see a logic here?
This also means that most of the women I know try too hard to make their way up, to give the best possible performance, and they get pretty agitated when they find out yet another guy’s been employed to the place they were hoping for, or been promoted, or got a permanent contract. And they’re still freelancers or on a monthly renewed contract or working for some human recourcing company which means they will never have any safety at all. It means that finally these women (including me) give up and decide that they might as well stay home and make those babies if they’re not gonna get a decent job in the fear that they might one day do just that. At least there would be some point to their life then, if it’s impossible to have a career (and be a woman) at the same time. I know. It is challenging.
My sister had a baby, and suddenly she didn’t have a job any more. That was weird. I could’ve sworn she had a permanent contract… But hey, who is going to start a long and winding law operation (against a big company) waiting to give birth to their first child – and more to the point – wishing that someday somehow they will still get a job in the same place? You said it. Neither did she.
I felt dirty. I feel dirty.
Just because I didn’t ruin my (slim?) chances of getting the job because of the completely unfair and unlawful stereotypes matter-of-facts that the society still harbours concerning genders, reproducing and evening up the workload.
What would they say if I answered Actually, I think I’m pregnant and I’m about to get married in a few months? Probably nothing, to me, but they would tell the story of this incredibly stupid and selfish bitch who tried to get ajob even though she was pregnant! That shithead! She has no rights when she’s not capable of working full time, doesn’t she realize no one would ever hire her!
Oh, yeas. I do realize it. I have realized it the year and a half I’ve been trying to get a job, and have been asked the same question, every single time. Are you planning to start a family? Even plannig it is criminal. So what is doing it?
And I can do nothing about it.
Ps. When Wonderboy was trying to get a job, he got one in 3 months time and nobody asked him if he was about to start a family. He even got a two week vacation for the wedding.