— NY Times: Housecleaning — Provided by the Boss? In Silicon Valley, Perks Come Home. «awesome»
Today we launch an ongoing collection of reader-submitted stories of workplace sexism. Email us and share yours! (And please indicate whether you’d prefer to remain anonymous.)
Today, a 20s-something New York writer, on looking for her first job out of college:
I applied for every writing position I could find in the months before graduating. I received a few interviews, but had nothing confirmed when a prominent New York journalist/professor emailed me. He received my resume from a position I applied to at the New Republic and was looking for a research assistant. I was overjoyed—especially after he said he wanted to cite my senior honors thesis in a new book he was writing—and agreed to meet him at a diner near his apartment on the Upper West Side.
He spent most of the meal explaining the position and ended by saying, “I’m glad you’re a girl.” He told me he “works better with female research assistants than with male ones” because he was “much more comfortable ordering women around than men.”
This should have been a warning sign … [but] I continued with the interview, following him back to his apartment … As he explained my salary, he rummaged around on a shelf full of DVDs. He handed me a cause with a red “Adult Content” label pasted under the title, “Taxicab Confessions.” He turned to me and said, “You could watch that with your boyfriend to get you started.”
The worst part is—despite all of this—I still almost accepted the job. The rest of the positions I was offered were administrative. It was almost impossible to get a research or writing job straight out of college and I was sure this opportunity would lead to many more. [I didn’t take it, and] I’m happier in my current position, [but] I still think about what would’ve happened if I’d taken the job. Would I now be writing for a prominent publication? Did I ruin my chances for a career in journalism? Should I have taken the job and simply dealth with the sexual harassment?
But what it really comes down to is this: Why should I have had to choose between working for a sexist boss and giving up my dream career?