Wailings Of A Work At Home Mom

The Wild and Wacky World of WAHMs!

When Are You Going To Get A Real Job – How To Deal With Unwanted Advice

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Home office

Home office (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the things that always comes up in discussion whenever I’m with my friends who also work online is how a lot of people can’t seem to help themselves and tell us that we should get a “real” job.

It doesn’t matter that I’m earning more now than I did in my old office job. It doesn’t matter that I’m working 40 hours a week. It doesn’t matter that I have a fulfilling career. It doesn’t matter that I also encounter the same kind of work related stress.

What matters is that I don’t work in an office, I don’t have a title that I could put on a calling card, I don’t have a boss that makes my life miserable, and I’m not wearing office clothes and make up. Apparently, as long as I don’t have those things, I’m not “gainfully” employed.

For the most part, the advice comes from people who care. It’s annoying but I’ve learned how to live with it. For the most part, I know that the advice stems mainly from the fact that they’re concerned about me. They want me to have my own money. They want me to help my husband with our finances. They want me to feel fulfilled. And those who care are usually happy with this response:

Thanks you for the advice and I understand that you mean well. I’m really touched that you’re concerned for me and my family. But this is the best set up for me and for my family right now, considering our circumstances. I am happy, I am fulfilled, and I have a stable income. If there’s something better out there  I would gladly take it. But for now, this is a good opportunity for me and I want to take advantage of it.

When I give them that answer, they understand. They know that they’re heard and they know I took their advice seriously. They understand that it’s not something that I can use right now but at least they know we’re both on the same side.

But what if the advice comes from people who don’t matter. Complete strangers. Acquaintances. People who think that their opinions should be set on stone and anyone blessed with their advice should follow them or else you would feel the wrath of God?

I have a ton of delicious comebacks for that =)

When are you going to get a real job…

…when my imaginary boss fires me.

…ssshhh, my imaginary boss can hear you…

…you see this (my house), this is all an illusion. We’re actually in a real office. That office that you’re working in is actually your house and you’re working from home.

…when I stop making real money from my fake job.

…when they start letting me wear pajamas to work.

…when a real job can do all my chores, babysit, and errands for me.

…when they release me from house arrest.

…when I can bring my fridge to work.

…I’m enjoying the real responsibilities of my fake job too much to quit.

…but I can’t leave my imaginary officemates. They depend on me.

…I have a real job. I mentally project myself into an office everyday.

…once I get the controls of the TARDIS right, then I’ll be back in an office in my real job.

…once I’m able to climb out of this black hole I call my home office.

…when I shop for groceries again. I’m going to get a  real job, with real milk, butter, sugar…

…and miss “Walking Dead”? No way…

…once I find a cure for my condition, real-job-itis.

Please let me know if you guys have any funny or witty comeback for this. Would love to hear how you guys responded to this annoying question.

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Author: Julia Jasmine Sta Romana

I'm a writer, enterprise development trainer, activist, full-time mom and part-time superhero. Currently working as 1) VA/content development for Onlinejobs.ph 2) contributor for GMA News Online and Mindanation. 3) internet right activist for Dakila.ph 4) trainer in training for ADFEC 5) co-founder of the Davao Virtual Assistants Association. I like to write about science and technology, parenting, food, society and my advocacy. On my free time I will be found * in school, taking my MBA, * scheming with my sisters on how we can save the world on our free time (Powerpuff!), * playing with our family dogs, * finding the easiest (laziest) way to do chores, and * cheering my daughter as she practices playing her trumpet, off key

2 thoughts on “When Are You Going To Get A Real Job – How To Deal With Unwanted Advice

  1. WONDERFUL post! My favorite of your responses is “…when I stop making real money from my fake job.” (NOTE: when I stopped telling people that I was working from home and started saying I was a consultant, it cut out a lot of the negatives.)

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