JOBS FOR DIVORCED WOMEN – THE PITY FACTOR
One of the fallouts of being divorced in India is how your status affects your work. Since work is rooted in society, especially freelance work, your position as a divorced woman is going to affect the amount and kind of work that you get and you might as well be aware of it.
Were I to write about a job I’d say from experience, mine as well as other divorced women, it’s more likely that you’ll be given the job that you apply for provided your credentials are up to the mark. What is this unfair advantage that you have over others? It’s simple – it’s called the sympathy card and it operates on the premise that employers feel sorry for you.
I for one don’t enjoy it when people do things for me because they pity me, because they consider me as somehow incomplete, that I have less money, less sex, less of everything which makes their giving me a job a ‘good deed’. My irritation with this is their attitude and not because it isn’t true – as divorced women we generally do have less of everything – fewer friends, holidays, pets, spare time, outings – but we still don’t need pity.
Instead of admiring us as gutsy women who have taken a stand, who’ve decided to opt out of their marriages and live this life of ‘deprivation’, the focus is on our loss. On what we DON’T have.
We have a lot. We have self esteem. We have courage. We have independence. And soon, one of these days, we will also have acknowledgement of all these qualities. Plus, if you keep giving us the jobs – because you pity us, ha ha, we’ll soon have plenty of money. Then we’ll also have pets, holidays, outings, make new friends – and still have less spare time than other people.
But then who needs spare time anyway? It’s just time you spend thinking about whether you’re a pioneer for trying to live the divorced life in a patriarchal society, or whether you have well and truly messed up your life.
YOU know you haven’t – because you have courage, independence and self esteem – and what’s life without those?
So all you employers out there – the better ones who feel bad for divorced women – remember that even pity is demeaning. We’re not looking for sympathy, but for empathy. It’s absolutely wonderful that we get those jobs – but don’t feel sorry for us – honour the braveness that leads us to choose lives of seeming hardship for the thrill of doing what we believe in.
So thank you to all those employers who employ divorced women feeling sorry for them but honestly – just give them the job because they’re good at it – whether or not they’re married, single, recently divorced, living with someone, gay or bisexual is entirely their business. It’s highly unprofessional for employers to be giving any thought at all to their employees relationship status.
I started writing about freelance work and got sidetracked into jobs that divorced women get and one of the reasons why.
Coming soon – what freelancing means for a divorced woman, other reasons why divorced women are given jobs