I’ve been applying for a new job like mad. I work in a truly toxic environment and everything that has happened over the last year has incinerated my coping skills.
And, really, I should not have to rely on coping skills to earn a shitty paycheck.
I got a response yesterday and it has me twisted up in knots. It’s a job that I wanted and a job that I know I’ll feel good about doing. It’s local, so the commute is good. The response included compensation and benefit information and a request for confirmation that I would like to proceed. All good, right? I was so excited.
The pay is 25% less than I’m making now.
I immediately started compromising. If I can get them to go up this many pennies and I reduce my medical coverage by that many, I can manage, etc. I want out and I had set my hopes on this particular job for some reason. Now, I have the response and I’m working myself into a frenzy.
So many what-if’s. Logically, it’s simple (cue inner monologue):
Interviewing is not committing. (Isn’t it wrong to waste everyone’s time if I know we won’t be able to eat on what I’d make?)
I can negotiate for a higher starting salary. (I just have to prove I’m worth it. But, I have nothing to offer. Seriously, why would they think I’m worth anything more?)
I can make it work financially if I have to. (Why? Why take a pay cut and hurt my family just to escape? I’ve survived this long. I have outlasted so many others who just can’t cope with the dysfunction.)
I can ask if the salary is flexible. (Oh.My.God. What if I get blacklisted?)
A couple days ago, I had put a lot of hope into this job. Now, I’ve thrown all of my fears into it.
Meanwhile, on paper, this is not the job we need me to have.