Holiday Weekend Open Thread

Something on your mind? Chat about it here.

Memorial Day sales are starting to kick into gear, and I’m hoping to do another round-up this weekend with more of my favorites. For the weekend open thread, though, I’m drooling over this stretchy button-front blouse — it looks perfect for running around on the weekend and looking pulled together but still being super comfortable. It’s part of the James Perse online sample sale — was $155, now marked to $89.

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Comments

  1. momentsofabsurdity :

    I have this blouse (or at least, its James Perse equivalent from last season). I love it but a) the sizing scale is so odd that I accidentally bought an XL (oops) and b) the fabric stretches a TON so I need to throw it into the dryer before wearing it (may be related to the, you know, buying an XL by accident, but still annoying…)

    • Amelia Bedelia :

      what is the sizing like?

      • Amelia Bedelia :

        I wear a size large t-shirt at ann taylor. what size would I wear for James Perse?

      • They use their own 0-4 sizing system with 3 or 4 being L/XL. I’m a size 4, which is probably where my confusion started. It’s still a super cute shirt!

  2. Sweet as Soda Pop :

    Not digging the shirt… Pockets on the boobs are not my thing.

    We’ve talked a lot about gifts for law school grads, but what about Physical Therapy school grads? My best friend just graduated with her DPT and I have no idea what to get her. I sent flowers when she passed her boards, but would like to do something different. I don’t think she has a job lined up yet, fwiw. I thought about something to start her working wardrobe, but she’ll be wearing lots of khakis and polos, so that’s not a great idea… I’m looking to spend about $100.

    Ideas? TIA!

    • What about a giftcard to zappos so she can get some comfort shoes?

    • I haven’t been to physical therapists’, but have been to licensed massage therapists who work in conjunction with a chiropractor. They often have some sort of mini-waterfall or similar soothing sound going on. Would she like something like that for her treatment room or office?

    • Seattleite :

      My best friend is a PT. She is required to wear a watch with a certain type of second hand, for checking pulses. Sorry, but I can’t remember whether it’s a ‘sweeping’ or a ‘ticking’ second hand. EC MD, wanna weigh in?

      • It’s sweeping. Less likely to get discombobulated between counting pulse beats and counting second ticks.

      • Also make sure the watch has numbers — it’s harder to begin counting if you can’t see exactly where you started. (Hopefully this makes sense? Some watches only have numbers or markings for 12, 3, 6 and 9.)

    • Ditto. No obvious pockets on b@@bs except slanted placket pockets on formal, tailored jackets.

    • Sweet as Soda Pop :

      Thank you all!

  3. I was prompted by the post a few days ago asking for updates to post one of my own. I posted back in February about concerns over my relationship with jealous boyfriend of three years, and I was so grateful for all your thoughtful comments and advice. Here’s my update: we broke it off in February (after a particularly stormy fight) and have had very little contact since then. I have tried to focus on work, picking up new hobbies, expanding my social circles, and generally keep moving. However, I am miserable without him. I miss him so much it physically hurts. I can’t remember how awful all the jealousy and accusations made feel, and I want to be back with him so, so badly (although I don’t think that’s an option any more). I’ve tried dating others but I keep thinking of him and missing him and not feeling able to focus on the person I’m on a date with. And, it sucks living in the same small town still – I always wonder if I’m going to run into him.

    I know in my head that the relationship wasn’t working and it wasn’t healthy, but in my heart I miss him and love him and keep thinking that perhaps we shouldn’t have ended it. Basically, I have no closure. I know this stuff takes time, but I am truly a mess, even three months on – I dream about him pretty much every night and I can’t stop thinking about him.

    Unfortunately therapy is out of the question at the moment – I started to go but my insurance doesn’t cover it and it became prohibitively expensive. I don’t want to go on antidepressants if I can avoid it, but I am starting to really see my life affected in a bad way (I don’t get much enjoyment out of anything that I used to like doing, and I’m finding it hard to concentrate at work.)

    I can’t stop thinking about Dan Savage’s theory about the “price of admission” to be with someone. Perhaps putting up with his jealousy was the price of admission to be with the person I love, and now I am just heartbroken.

    Has anyone been in similar position and what did you find helped you start moving on and healing? I’ve already done a list of reasons I had to get out of the relationship, but now I look at the list and think I was just out of my mind. I want to stop looking back and reminiscing/daydreaming about him, and instead pull myself together and move on. It’s like my mind is stuck.

    Sorry for the long post. Any thoughts/advice much welcomed.

    • Hang in there! You did the right thing! Don’t go back!

      Are you near a college/university? Often Masters and PsyD students are required to do therapy hours. They’re supervised by their professors and the cost is often really reasonable. Call the psychology department.

      If not, I would seriously consider antidepressants. You don’t have to stay on them forever, they can be helpful in getting through a bad situation such as this and most of them come in generic forms now which are very reasonable if your insurance covers it. At least go talk to your GP about it?

    • Oh sad anon. I remember your post. And I know it is so hard to make this decision and to stick with it. But you need to believe that what you’re doing is the right think. Because yes, Dan Savage may write about the “cost of admission” — but he also writes that irrational jealousy of the type that I remember your boyfriend having is emotional abuse, plain and simple. See e.g.: http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/savage-love/Content?oid=889937 (and others, he’s addressed this many times over the years.)

      But I know that the advice of a s*x advice columnist cannot make this easier. And it can’t make this better. Dealing with the end of a relationship is a lot like dealing with a death. You need to exercise self-care like you’re dealing with a death. Have you been honest with family and friends about what happened and why you left? Have you asked for help? Don’t worry about dating right now, that’s not important, worry about reconnecting with friendships and with family and just really relying on those relationships.

      Also — I know you say that therapy is out of the budget (believe me I understand) — but what about group therapy. If you contact your local DV advocacy org, they should be able to point you to a group who meets for women who have experienced emotional abuse. And what might help about going to that is to realize you’re not alone. Its incredibly common to think about going back, to want to go back. For a very long time, he was an incredibly important part of your universe (that’s a key tool in an emotional abuser’s tool-bag) — and its really hard to rebuild when that is out of it. Knowing that doesn’t make it go away, but sometimes it helps to talk about it with other people who have been there.

      Sad anon…I know its so hard right now. And I know I don’t know you. But I also want you to know that you’re doing the right thing and that we’re here for you, even though we don’t know you.

    • Oh no, I’m sorry! Break-ups are so painful. You should get yourself a copy of Susan Elliott’s Getting Past Your Breakup and read it this weekend. Break-ups are not easy and it makes all the sense in the world that you’re still heartbroken three months later.

      I don’t remember your earlier post, but I will say that jealousy/fighting/controlling behavior is NOT the same as the price of admission. The price of admission is leaving cream cheese on the counter. Jealousy/controlling behavior is a major red flag that will destroy your life. You are doing the right thing here — you just need to fight your way through the horrible, painful breakup.

    • Cut yourself some slack. You dated the guy for three years. It’s only been three months. Perhaps it’s too soon for you to dive back in to dating; that’s okay!

      Hang in there! It will get better.

      • It will definitely get better. I was in a similar situation about a year ago – recent break up, missing the guy, wondering if/when we’d run into each other. And it definitely sucked for a while. I didn’t even want to think about dating again. I spent plenty of nights falling asleep on the couch to the tv (or in bed with the laptop playing) just so I could drown out the things I wish I had said/told him that kept running through my brain as I tried to fall asleep.

        But time helps. It smooths out the rough edges. And if therapy helps, that’s good, and if it’s important to you, you should definitely use it. But, it’s not a magic pill either – it’s not going to make the aftermath better, just more bearable because you have a way of getting it out of your head. Do you have friends that you can talk to? Parents, siblings? Anyone that you can just say the things you are thinking to and know that you’ll have a empathic ear, but that can turn around and remind you that the break is for the best and that jealousy is never an appropriate? Are you journaling or writing any of your thoughts down?

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t really have any advice, and I am very sorry that you miss your boyfriend so much. I will say that I don’t think that being with someone that is baselessly accusatory and jealous is a good thing. I can’t imagine that makes you feel very good about yourself. I think you are better off being alone, or being with someone that makes you feel good about yourself.

      I have a few questions – when you broke it off with him, was it a fight or did you have a chance to talk? I ask because if he was an otherwise nice and caring person (with a jealous streak), I wonder if you told him why you were breaking it off. I wonder if he would care. It doesn’t sound like cares to know how he could have improved things.

      Otherwise, I would suggest to simply keep moving (as you said). Keep meeting new people and trying new things. Try not to allow yourself to think about him.

    • If you’re into books, a bunch of my friends have read “It’s Called a Break up Because it’s Broken” by Greg Behrendt and very very highly recommend it.

    • S in Chicago :

      Please don’t go back. You’re doing all the right things, it just takes time. Continue to keep yourself occupied with an external focus–exercise, plan things with friends so you have “something” you’re looking forward to, set some work goals or attend functions related to your profession and delve into them. Honestly, I think you’ll realize that it is often a matter of loneliness and missed routine that is making it so hard. Honestly, some day you’ll look back and wonder how you ever put up with that craziness. Price of admission should be things like occassionally attending sports events you don’t like or keeping your mouth buttoned when his loud-mouth friend is in town–it’s not subjecting yourself to bad treatment and lack of respect. One of my friends gave me some great advice after a bad pattern of routinely going back to someone who wasn’t very nice to me. She said to imagine yourself as a kid and the advice you would have given her then about picking relationships (friends and romantic) as she got older. You wouldn’t have wanted her to settle for a jealous lout, would you? You deserve better. Once you’ve had some more time and space and experiences filling your day-to-day, it will eventually fall into place. Just hang in there. You seriously deserve much better. And stop going through your lists and reminiscing–the more you keep doing that, the more you keep preventing the necessary mental distance to occur where you’ll see the situation more clearly.

      • You are exactly where you should be three months in. Actually, farther along than many would be (and have been — ask me how I know!). Three months is nothing. Especially after three years. AA says you shouldn’t make any big decisions or commitments like starting to date someone for ONE YEAR after becoming sober. I kind of think leaving this guy is like going sober. So I’m not surprised that it feels wrong/weird/strange to be on a date with a total stranger these days.

        Completely agree with others that his behavior does not fall in the category of “price of admission.” (That’s like, “yes, I prefer all the dishes to be done before we close up the house for the night, but he leaves them for the next morning.” type stuff.)

        Also agree with group therapy. Maybe even Al-Anon or CODA because there will be others there who are dealing with staying away from people who are toxic for them, just like you are.

        • By the way, I think this is a really good summary of the “price of admission” thing from Dan Savage.

          Or put another way, a partner is allowed to charge a reasonable price of admission into their life. Like, they can ask that dishes get done or that you fold your clothes or even that s*x be had reasonably often. That sort of thing.

          But asking that you subject yourself to constant emotional punishment, not a reasonable price of admission.

    • Silvercurls :

      Stick to your chosen path, but try being kinder to yourself about reminiscing. It’s only human to be–amidst the difficulties of adjusting to a new situation–wistful about the less-than-ideal situation you just exited. (Example: The Israelites had scarcely left Egypt when they began complaining about how their food in freedom was not as good as the melons and cucumbers they ate while enslaved. I’m not trying to be evangelical; the Exodus story just happens to be on my mind.) Perhaps you’re missing the warmth of being in a relationship as much as you’re missing being with *him*. Whatever you do, don’t go back to your previous unhappiness by reconnecting with him because that will only wipe out your months of working to a new sense of balance *without* this guy in your life! Sometimes the 5% mismatch really *is* more significant than the 95% match with another person. Trust your earlier decision that the “price of admission” (putting up with his jealousy) was too high, and also trust that life really will get better. You can’t make room for something new and improved until you’ve evicted the old and not-so-great. (I’m doing this in terms of physical possessions, but it can be the same way with personal connections.) Good luck. I hope you find ways to stay contentedly if not happily occupied this weekend.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Why don’t you want to go on anti depressants? Speaking for myself, I resisted medication for months while I was depressed because I wanted to prove (to whom? myself?? the world???) that I didn’t need medication, that medication is for other people and I wasn’t that bad. I was afraid that medication would make me not myself. I was afraid that I would become dependent on the medication. Denial. It ain’t just a river in Egypt.

      When I hit bottom (which really, really sucks and I highly recommend you avoid) and finally went on medication. None of my fears came true. It was like this horrible cloud was lifted off of me. For the first time in months, I felt like myself again. Not the sad sack version of myself I’d become acustomed to, but the real me, that had been buried under the horrible weight of depression. I was on the medication for about a year, during which time I was able to get myself help and learn how to feel like a normal human again. I couldn’t have done that without meds. I did not become dependent. And now I try to talk about my stint on medication whenever appropriate, because it saddens me that there’s a stigma against medication which prevents people from getting the help they need.

      Please reconsider medication, Sad Anon. It sounds like you need the support right now.

      • Even as the daughter of a mental health professional, I thought medication was either for “crazy” people or “weak” people. Then I went on a low-dose anti-depressant and it was like the sun shone in my life for the first time in months. It was like a weight lifting off my chest I hadn’t even realized was there.

        I don’t know how to describe it. Its not for the weak though, its for the smart.

        • “I went on a low-dose anti-depressant and it was like the sun shone in my life for the first time in months. It was like a weight lifting off my chest I hadn’t even realized was there.”

          I second this description of what it’s like to go on an anti-depressant. I also viewed them as being for weak people but once I was on them, I couldn’t deny that it was clear I hadn’t being seeing anything clearly for months. I didn’t realize what a relief it could be to stop crying all the time.

          • THIS. Started taking citalopram (celexa) during law school after just thinking my anxiety was something I could “learn to control.” I’ve never been happier in my entire life. Realizing you may need help makes you strong, not weak!

      • Thanks SFBA, this is interesting to hear. I have all the concerns you list in your post, together with a general sense (probably from my upbringing) that I should be able to just pull myself together and deal with this, not through medication. But the truth is, I am a mess, and I cry in my car on the way to work, and in my car on my way home after work. I hold it together at work (thankfully being insanely busy has been a distraction) but it’s getting harder and harder. I am just waiting to hit rock bottom so I can start feeling better again, but every week feels worse than the one before.

        • I’m agreed from above. You are describing serious symptoms of depression that are impacting your ability to live your life in several major ways. Remember, situational depression is still depression. And rock bottom is a misnomer…because frequently you hit rock bottom and kind of bounce…hitting it repeatedly over and over again. Until you’re kind of bruised and battered.

          At least talk to your PCP about maybe trying low-dose anti-depressants if you’re thinking about it. They won’t force them down your throat. Also, there are places you can go where you can get lower cost or free therapy — maybe ask your PCP if they have an in-office social worker who could help you get a referral of some sort to an agency.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          You’re welcome. Yes, I felt that way too – I’ve always been a pull-myself-up-by-my-bootstraps self-reliant kind of girl, so I really resisted getting help because if I needed help, then I wasn’t who I thought I was, and I really didn’t want to do that. This was a serious mistake on my part. Smart girls use the tools they need to get ahead, which can include meds.

          It deeply troubles me that you’re almost looking forward to hitting rock bottom so you “can start feeling better again,” but what you’re not recognizing is that you could hit rock bottom and *stay there* without help. It’s not like you hit the bottom of the pool and can use the floor to launch yourself back up to the surface. You could just sink to the bottom and be stuck down there, and drown. Please don’t do that to yourself. Please believe me when I tell you that hitting bottom is the most horrible thing you could do to yourself. Please make the choice to get help and get better.

        • Agreed and SFBA are so so right about rock bottom. It’s a much worse place than you’d think. Avoid getting there if you can.

        • AnonForThis :

          I understand the way you’re feeling. Many years ago (gosh, 10+, and I am since married) I had a relationship ended that had gone on for about 2.5 years. It was very volatile (and somewhat abusive) and one day he ended it with no explanation. Left. He just stopped talking to me. When I finally got him to say something to me after days of crying, screaming, and begging, he pretty much just said he didn’t want to be with me anymore, if I could leave his things at X place, and that was it. No explanation. No talking. No nothing. Just here today, gone tomorrow.

          I felt like you for what felt like such a long time. I felt like my whole self was broken. The complete and utter lack of closure, to this day, is probably the thing that bothers me most and delayed my healing so much, so again I truly understand what you feel. To this day I still do not understand why he did what he did. Before I got married, I wrote him an email (we had not spoken in years at that point), telling him that I was sorry for any hurt I had caused and I wished him the best. He never wrote back. He still has not and I still have not heard from him since he told me he didn’t want anything to do with me. I don’t suspect I ever will. I am not going to lie- I still sometimes have nightmares about him and the whole deal, even though I am happy, coupled up, and it has been 10+ years. I even admit part of me wishes he would just write back and tell me he was sorry too. I feel like my scars might 100% go away if that happened. But, I have spent a lot of time since I met my now husband realizing this will probably never happen, and so I think I have healed as much as I can. I am proud of how far I’ve come.

          I too remember crying and crying at a moment’s notice. I felt empty and alone. I felt like nobody would understand what I went through because all of our mutual friends would never believe how volatile and abusive the relationship was. Some of my friends didn’t even really believe me that he just stopped talking to me. It was horrible.

          One day though… I just got so. sick. of. crying. I think I was at the grocery store walking by the fish counter and I started bawling because they had the same type of salmon we had cooked together, or something, a million days previously. I was crying at fish. I just kind of felt pathetic at myself, and there was just some sort of lightbulb that clicked, I guess, and suddenly I just didn’t want to cry any more. It was like some mental switch just got flipped and said… no way, I’m done. I’m so done with this. It was better ever since. I tried to heal the lonliness by pursuing goals he never wanted me to. That helped. I journaled a ton. I dated some very nice people casually, no expectations (no –s*x– either). They were just nice men I could get dressed up for, go out, have some dinner a few times, and feel a little better about the world. After doing that for awhile, things started to feel more normal and I started to find myself really interested in men again. That made me feel even better… like a normal person, like there was such a thing as love after loss and that it’s really true there were other fish in the sea. I will never forget the feeling of kissing my husband for the first time. it was exhilirating and a feeling like I never experienced with ‘the other.’ Amazing you could be with somebody for almost 3 years and never feel your heart pitter patter and flutter.

          My point is that healing comes… normalcy comes. Eventually. It may take a long time or some internal mechanism, but the healing comes and normalcy, despite bad memories, can and will overtake you. And there will be a point where you are with a new man who makes you feel so much more amazing than you ever did before, and you will wonder how in the world you could have ever wanted the past back. Part of that is finding a new routine and a new person to put in that slot in your heart labeled ‘the one I love.’ I found that one of the hardest things about that break up was not so much that I had lost him specifically, but rather that i had lost that routine of being with somebody and lost the vision/labeled slot in my heart of the person who i was supposed to love. Suddenly all those future fantasies like ‘get married’ or ‘travel with your partner’ became empty because there was no partner anymore and I could no longer see who that partner for the future might be. This feeling gets better over time when you do start to feel more comfortable seeing different men. you start to feel sparks for them and realize how there are a lot of different people who might fill that label. then, you start to realize how it’s just the partner and the future you miss, and not necessarily the old partner himself. Again, it takes time, but I think this sort of aspect of losing a relationship is one of the things that makes it so hard to heal from.

          Again, it takes time. Don’t push yourself. Cry if you need to. There is no shame in that. It’s a long process and healing hurts, but one day there is an end, even if you can’t see it right now.

          • Thank you so much for sharing this. The crying over salmon in the store really resonated with me – I am at that stage now where I am constantly reminded of him, which of course is only normal since we spent so much time together – every day items have become associated with him.

          • I have been there as well. In a relationship with a jealous manipulative man that for some reason I loved way too much. He actually ended it, which was the best thing for me because I don’t know how much longer I would have let it go on. But it took me about a year to get over him. I had to take sleeping pills to sleep at night. I cried at the drop of a hat. How did I get over it? I talked to one particularly good friend a lot. I journaled. I did all the things that I didn’t dare do while I was with him for fear of inciting his jealousy. Give yourself more time. 3 months is not enough. Get out and do all the things you’ve hoped to do (start crossing off your bucket list). Talk to friends. Write down how you are feeling. I didn’t take any anti-depressants, but the sleeping pills saved me. Without them I couldn’t sleep at all; I’d just stay awake obsessing, crying naked in the bathtub (yeah, it was bad), and wondering why, what could I have done different. So give yourself more time. Don’t date yet. Write it down and it will gradually work its way out of your system. I look back at it now and I’m so grateful that I didn’t stay with him. I would have been miserable. Instead, I met a wonderful, loving, giving man who is now my husband. He values me, trusts me, and loves me with all his heart; all things my ex was unable to do. He makes me so happy and I would have had none of that if my and ex and I had stayed together.

          • This is beautifully written and very self-aware in a way that it is hard to be. Thanks for posting it.

        • Anonymous :

          I would also urge you to reconsider taking antidepressants. My experience was that it took the edge off so that I still cried but it was not a never-ending, over-the-top experience. I also did therapy, which was immensely useful. I stopped the antidepressants after a couple of years, as well as the therapy. Five years later, I am so glad I did both. One thing I told myself to motivate was that I wanted to bounce back as well and as fast as I could so I could meet that right person and be the healthy, stable person that person would want to be with. I also feel like antidepressants, because they help to keep you from going over the edge, help you to heal faster and get your mind going in healthier directions so that you might get to a good place a little faster than without them. I hope that helps.

      • If you try anti-depressants, be prepared for the first or second one you try to not be right for you. I had terrible experiences with the first two anti-depressants (racing heart, could not sleep, sweaty hands) and decided it was better to go without. Some friends recommended herbal supplements, never tried them, but that’s another option.

    • I heard once that it takes about 1/2 as long as you were with someone to fully get over that person. I think this might trend a bit long, but I think it gives some perspective. You were together for 3 years. That would put you at needing about 1.5 years to fully get over him. You have only been apart 3 months – that’s how long someone would need if they’d only been together 6 months.

      I know that you can’t just apply math to love and get a nice, clean result. Emotions and feelings don’t work that way. But you got to give this some time. It is totally natural that you are focusing on the good times you had and are daydreaming about being back together. It is really comfortable and feels really good to be in a committed relationship. Now that you’re apart, you are without your best friend, your other half. Now is when you have to kind of, grow your own other half back (if that makes sense), and that growing, hurts.

      What worked for me was just doing what you are trying to do – expanding social circle and developing personal hobbies. This was how I got into fitness and working out. When I’d be alone in my apartment and feeling lonely and mopey, I’d get myself to gym. This redirected my focus and energy and gave me a great endorphin high. It also didn’t hurt that after a month or so of this, I lost some weight and started getting toned, attracting more male attention, pumping up my self-esteem, and showing me not only that I could still attract guys, but that I could attract better ones than my ex.

      • Pretty sure the “getting over takes half as long as your relationship” rule came from SATC. At least, that’s the only place I’ve ever seen it. Just sayin.

    • Gotta run to the airport, but, real quick: Remember that being in an abusive relationship is like being a trained dog! He’s got you trained. (I got trained, too, so, no judgement there). At first, he was nice. then, he’d start being jealous, but still nice sometimes. But, it feels oh so good when he’s nice! And that’s exactly how to go about training a dog – you don’t give him treats all the time, after he’s learned how to shake hands. Serious, sounds weird, but I was reading a book about clicker training, and it finally clicked for me that my ex had trained me! So, OF COURSE you feel like crap right now. It doesn’t mean you made the wrong decision. It WILL get better, though. Please, please, please….the price of admission does NOT mean accepting an unheathly relationship. For me, change of scenery helped – go visit some friends that live out of town?

      best of luck to you!

    • Major hugs. That sucks. I ended a relationship that wasn’t working for me about 6 years ago. It wasn’t a very similar situation but iut was a very difficult decision to make because he was mostly great, yet there were a few things that just weren’t right and I thought ultimately the decision would have to be made sooner or later. It was not easy.
      The reason I am sharing though is that a few years later I really did look back on that relationship very fondly (e.g., He loved me sooooo much, etc.) and I ended up running into his friends at a party. We ended up talking extensively and they kept wanting to know what happened and why I ended it. I didn’t say anything unkind and was just vague and then one of his friends said something to the effect of “it’s all right, I get it,” going on to recount some really sh*tty behavior on my ex’s part that I had COMPLETELY rejected from memory. It really blew my mind because 1) I totally did not remember it at all and 2) I thought no one in our little circle ever noticed any of his lesser moments.

      My point is breaking up is hard and memory can make things that were awful seem totally okay in retrospect. I know what you mean about price of admission but I don’t think your situation is quite what Dan had in mind. Hang in there.

      Also, while I get the anti depressants reluctance, what about something natural like St John’s Wart?

    • Thank you all for your recommendations. I am taking all of this to heart and perhaps this is the weekend when I figure out a game plan for turning myself around. I am starting to realize that I can’t rely on just processing this in on my own in my head. I’m not really talking to my family as for some reason (a vague hope of fixing this relationship?) I don’t want them to turn against him, but I have great, supportive friends who listen and remind me of how was talking about this relationship when I was in it.

      • Are you seeing your family much at all? If you have a good relationship with them, it might be good to spend a weekend with your parents/a sibling/cousin/very long time bff etc. I think part of a breakup like this is that you lose part of your identity, which was tied to this other person for so long. Being around family can be soothing because they knew you (and loved you) before, and will be there for you long after. They can remind you that this relationship is not who you are.

        Also, I think you should tell them. Not all the gory details of course, but get it out there- he was jealous and it was unhealthy. The more you say it, the more you will remember it.

        • Thanks, yes – I’ve booked a trip to see family this summer. They know we’ve split up but they don’t know why (and they are somewhat puzzled, especially by my unwillingness to talk about it.)

          • Talkaboutittalkaboutittalkaboutit.

            I know it sounds hard and stupid. But ask for help from the people in your life who matter. And don’t pull punches either (and don’t sugar-coat it, be honest about it) because they need to know the why (because otherwise they may be tempted to tell you ‘oh, you can just patch things up’). Because, right now you need the support of the people in your life who are important to you! I know its hard…but talk about it. Its the best thing you can do for yourself right now.

          • I split from an emotionally abusive boyfriend 10+ years ago. It was a multi-year relationship. My family still doesn’t know that he abused me. I should probably tell them, but it’s so tough. So don’t feel horrible if you can’t tell them.

            I have learned through that breakup and others that I can’t handle dating after a breakup. You should learn to “date yourself,” i.e., learn to live life as a single person. It’s actually really fun. (Movies are cheaper! Restaurants bring your food quicker! You can get tons of free drinks from men in bars, thank them, and then leave!)

            You have to know who you are, as an individual, before you can offer that person to others in relationships.

            This website also really helped me in my last breakup: http://www.baggagereclaim.co.uk.

            You did the right thing. Intense jealousy is emotional abuse.

      • Late to the thread, but what others said! You did the right thing, my dear, and IT WILL GET BETTER.

        There will come a time, when everything will hurt less, and you will be able to go back to all the places you’ve been, and reclaim them. Make new, better memories, so they predominate, instead of memories with your ex.

        I think of the suffering and grief that comes of any breakup as sort of the opposite of “price of admission, ” — it’s the price of freedom. You’re free from the emotional abuse and his thrills-and-chills roller-coster. As tough as things are right now, your life is wholly your own. There will come a time when you’ll savor in it, and revel in it.

    • I still miss the guy I broke up with in 1996 because he was cheating on me. He has made a couple of plays for me, but with the distance we now have from each other, I see that our life paths are too disparate.

      I wish I had advice for you. I don’t, but I am concerned because your post sounds so much like what I’m learning as a volunteer is what women/girls go through when they are trafficked. Not saying you’re looking for a pimp, just that you sound like you are very, very vulnerable and need to be careful about any decisions you’re making. Remember to value yourself!

      One small thing that might be encouraging–my son and I have both noticed that when one of us notices we are in a depression, that is usually the first step towards getting out of it. When we are deepest, we don’t notice it’s happening. When we recognize it and begin to see the role it’s playing, then we are on the way out. I hope you are too.

      • Anonymous :

        I think it’s kind of awful that you posted this. How does it help Sad Anon to know you still miss a guy from 16 years ago? It’s obviously out of the norm, and it’s really selfish and strange for you to to have shared this.

        • Silvercurls :

          Gently, gently, please. Thanks for sticking up for the OP, but JenK only spent two sentences on her own circumstances before turning her focus to Sad Anon’s situation. Most of us can’t fully respond to a request for help without first reexamining our own experience in similar circumstances. After all, unless we’re trained therapists, on what other body of knowledge can we draw?

          I trust that each original poster here is able to sift through the responses, attend to what is helpful to her, and ignore the rest without being destroyed by an outlier comment. The women who visit this site generally seem quite able to transform present difficulties into challenges that are met, learned from, and transcended.

        • No, it’s not. It’s reality for some people and the OP probably knows this so why hide it.

          • You’re right. Why hide it? I know when I’m consoling someone about something I make sure to be as candid as possible. If someone’s crying about her weight, I tell her that frankly she would look better if she gained or lost pounds. If someone’s upset about not getting into grad school, I explain that the economy is awful so she probably is even less likely to get a job now without that graduate degree.
            It’s true – since it’s a reality for some people, I should make sure to mention it when someone’s asking for help.

        • It’s called “normalizing”–letting someone know that they are not the only person goig through whatever it is they are worried about. See the last couple dozen posts.
          Getting out of a bad relationship is important, but carrying a soft spot for that person is not a problem; I think being full of hate or spite would be a much more harmful reaction. The trick is not to let yourself fool yourself into thinking that your fondness for the person in one way means you ough to be with him in another.

          • That makes some sense – I kind of get why you posted what you did, then. Thanks for clarifying,

      • I’m just going to chime in from..well gee, how to put it…the other end of the WRONG path when dealing with this.
        i had a similar situation (emotionally abusive relationship, really, he cheated, etc, whatever you want to insert I don’t think it really matters WHAT precisely the problem was, other than recognizing the relationship was broken and fundamentally unhealthy for you). Anyway.
        After over 2 years, broke up, (he cheated, sort of epically, so last straw). We were supposed to move in together over Christmas and broke up after Thanskgiving, (this was years ago) so it was a very “Totally set on one direction then BLINDSIDE, BOOM” kind of thing.

        I did this same thing. Distraught. Sleeping pills to sleep. Coffee to wake up. Lost 20 pounds. Couldn’t eat. Didn’t care. Basically the walking comatose when I wasn’t busy crying till I threw up. (sorry to be graphic). But really, depths of freaking despair.

        And yeah, it went on for a long, long time. I’d say it was a sold 6 months before I just couldn’t cry any more. But I still pined. I compared everyone to his few favorable characteristics. There were some things about him that were great (there always are, right?) and after awhile, it seemed like they somehow outweighed whatever was wrong with him.

        Small town. I’d run into him here or there. Hard. Mutual friends. Awful. You know, the whole deal.
        About 3 years after we broke up, and I’d had a sort of not so great experience with another guy, it was christmastime. Was out with a girlfriend, needed a ride. So I called him. I think I wanted to see if he’d come. Because I *wasn’t over it*, really. He actually did. I got mixed with him again.

        Long story short: NOT ONE THING HAD CHANGED.
        I realized really quickly, hit me really hard, that he was broken. Effed up. Not ok. JUST like before. Because that’s who he is. All those thoughts that “if only this thing were different, everything would be great because otherwise he’s awesome”? Just keep walking through them, love, because the hard truth is that one thing? It will NEVER be different, because that IS who he is. He isn’t that great guy with this one little issue, he is THAT guy. With the issue. They aren’t separate. That IS him. And it won’t change. Ever.
        It was easier to let go the second time, but I wish I could have realized, really understood, before doing it *again* that the saying “a leopard can’t change it’s spots” is really true.

        Time with him would be just the same. It wouldn’t be like it is in your head. It wouldn’t be all the good stuff without the jealousy and craziness. It would be *just the same*. Exactly. Maybe even worse (mine was) because then they figure you’re so into them you’re not going anywhere. Just keep walking. Literally and figuratively. You’ll come out the other side eventually, but you can’t do that if you turn back around and go the way you came.

        • CleveAnon :

          Can I just add my experience to the wrong path here too?

          I broke up with a guy when it became apparent that he’d cheated on me and didn’t have a problem with it, nor was he bothered by the fact that I did have a problem with it. I then carried a torch for this man for five years, through several other relationships and a couple of major life changes. We got back together after five years, and guess what? Nothing had changed. He had no problem picking out engagement rings with me and planning to move in together while maintaining his extracurricular activities with at least one other woman.

          There’s one good thing to be said for the “wrong” path, and that’s that it can sometimes, if you’re ready for it, bold face and double underline the things that were wrong the first time, and ensure that you never make the same mistake again.

    • You are NOT alone. I had a probelem with my ex, Alan Sheketovits. He perfered the bottle over me. I am ALMOST over him (my mom calls it “EGGZOVER”) and I do NOT like it when guys just want me for sex. I am worth alot more then that. You, like me, will find another guy who will treat you right! We are better then the men who act like boys. Eventuelly there will be another guy, we just have to wait for him to show up!!!!! He will be there. There are alot of guys who want me (and you); you have to be pickey! Not just any slob! It has to be the right slob, my dad says! I say FOOEY! No slob for me. I want the real deal. A guy who is a prince who will treat me like the Queen of Sheba! Yes, that is what we deserve! Not just any slob! So forget that guy–men are all around. Pick the right one! Best of luck to you!

      • Oh Ellen. That’s sweet.

        And h8ll yeah lady. Just say FOOEY and move on! I’m even going to have a mug that says that.

        • BTW guys, Ellenwatch noted that we have a new DTMFA, its JSFAMO! Love it. :-)

  4. Mary Ann Singleton :

    I like this shirt, but there are no returns/exchanges, so I would want to try it on first.

    On another topic – looking for reviews on the Cole Haan Violet Air 60 pump. I really want this in the nude color but I’m hesitant to spend so much on pumps (even with this weekend’s 25% off). I almost bought it in purple last week on sale, but I really need the nude-for-me version more. Should I wait for a better discount? Hope that it goes on sale?

    • I find the Violet Air 60 pump to be very comfortable and just the right height. I’m not sure if you’ll find a better price for it in nude.

      • Mary Ann Singleton :

        Thanks! (I was really just looking for an enabler and I think your post did the trick.) I think I’ll pull the trigger on this one….

  5. ChocCityB&R :

    Yay Weekend open thread! Random question related to non-work wear:

    What do you ladies wear around the house? I’ve recently discovered that I’m a sad sad frump from the moment I get home from work until I leave the next morning. I like to be comfortable and get out of my restrictive work clothing, but often that means an oversized t-shirt and sweatpants (and not cute yoga pants, I mean the heavy cotton with the elastic at the bottom sweatpants).

    So, what do you ladies wear when you get home, and what are some more stylish but still comfortable after work options?

    • I’m definitely a “sad frump” after work. I get home, maybe go to yoga, hop in the shower (even if no yoga was involved), and throw on some shorts/sweatpants, and a t-shirt. I live alone, so I have no one to impress, and this is what is comfortable for me.

      • Sames. My dog doesn’t care if I’m wearing leggings and a college t-shirt to sit on the couch.

        If I’m going out to do more than walk her down the block and back, I put on real clothes. Nothing fancy, think jeans + a t-shirt or a sundress.

    • I do the same thing that you do. My poor husband!

    • What kinds of tops do you wear to work? I like to wear something nice but comfortable, like a patterned blouse and cardigan with easy jewelry. Then when I get home, it’s nbd to just switch my slacks or pencil skirt out for dark wash trouser jeans, and switch my heels for flats. I still feel like I’ve got the “put together” feel from work, but it transitions over into something more comfortable. This might not work if you are very business formal all day, because a crisp button down or a silk shell or something isn’t going to have that easy feel in the evenings, but I think it works pretty well for my business casual wardrobe.

      However, if I know I’m not going anywhere in between work and bed … it’s just jammies/ sweat pants straight away and I hang out in them all evening :)

      • Research, Not Law :

        This is what I do, too. I’m also business casual.

        I also keep a “home” outfit for the entire workweek. It’s basically jeans or knit skirt with a not-so-basic jersey top. Since it’s still out from the previous evening, I don’t have to think.

        Not that I don’t spend a significant amount of free time in “yoga” pants (LOL, because I don’t use them for yoga). I don’t feel guilty about it either – my husband isn’t exactly a model in his off-time either.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I want to know the answer to your question, too. I usually change out of work clothes and into yoga pants/sweatpants, and a sweatshirt when I get home, but that kinda bums the DH out. He doesn’t see me all day, and then I’m frumpy as soon as I walk in the door. I’m reluctant to spend money on in-house clothes, but maybe the rettes have inexpensive suggestions.

      • I really like these Merona t-shirts from Target: http://www.target.com/p/Merona-Womens-Gathered-Neck-Top-Assorted-Colors/-/A-13916104

        I have it in 4 colors: black, red, and two jewel tones. I occasionally wear one to work in my business casual office under a cardigan so I’ll leave it on when I get home or change into one or something like it when I get home. They’re only $10 and just as comfy as an old t-shirt, so I think they’re a great alternative. I think a fitted tee and a pair of jeans (or even leggings or yoga pants) is quite a step up from sweatpants.

      • I wear Champion (Target) black yoga pants or crops and the fitted v-neck tees from Old Navy. Used to just wear pajama pants and old sorority tees, but I thought I would throw the husband a bone and at least wear something slightly fitted.

        I feel a little more put together wearing yoga pants and a jewel-tone tee versus pajama pants and a horribly stained XL tee shirt from our college days. Either way, though, the bra is replaced by a sports bra basically the minute I walk in the door.

        • me too- I change into yoga pants + tshirt as soon as I walk through the door. DH actually enjoys the yoga pants, so no complaints from him on that. I make a conscious effort to avoid the oversized tees and fleece pants so that I don’t look like a total disaster. I’ll also run most errands in yoga pants. It’s a little shameful. I wish I could wear yoga pants to court. Maybe with a jacket? (kidding! kind of…)

          • I once had the following exchange with my roommate. It was before my morning coffee.

            Roommate: I’m so glad it’s casual Friday! That means I get to wear yoga pants.
            Me: [spits toothpaste on myself] You’re wearing YOGA PANTS to WORK?
            Roommate: What? It’s only a half day.

            And there she was. Wearing a professional top and shoes with yoga pants. To go educate the future of America.

          • @a.: wow, I would not have the balls to actually do it. ha! Maybe this is a sign that there is a market for stretchy professional pants after all.

      • Honestly, my solution? Target jersey dresses. I can’t wait to get out of my lawyer-gear immediately upon getting home, and DH was similarly bummed when I immediately changed into yoga pants.

        Now I change into some kind of jersey dress. It’s as comfortable as being in PJs, but looks a bit better. And I’m not scrambling or going out looking like a frump if I need to run to the store later in the evening for say, cold medicine.

        • Second this – in warm weather, I’m all about casual dresses and skirts – Old Navy is a really good source. Add a fitted tank top to the skirt, and you get a really cute, sexy in a girl next door kind of way, look that’s as comfortable as pjs.

    • I’m about the same. If I’m sure I’m not going anywhere, I’ll change into my pajama pants, but they are pretty and come in tall size

      http://www.target.com/p/Gilligan-OMalley-Womens-Modal-Pajama-Pant-Assorted-Colors/-/A-12346725

      and I would feel fine answering the door in them. I have enough of these for every day of the week, all in black. I usually wear a black tank and a pretty side-tie wrap cardigan in kind of a cream color with them.

    • Kontraktor :

      I pretty much wear this sort of thing too because, I mean, I’m cooking, doing dishes, cleaning up after my cats, etc. If we go out to dinner/do something, I just put on jeans + whatever sort of cute top I’d wear on the weekend.

      I recently went and got some cute PJ sets at JC Penney. They were so cheap so I felt I could order 4 or 5 sets without feeling like it was a waste. Most of the pieces all coordinate so I can mix and match. I feel a little cuter when I am wearing printed PJ bottoms + coordinating PJ top than when I’m wearing random sweats and a college/ratty t-shirt. Forever21 and Kohls also have a lot of cute, cheap PJ sets. Also, I stalked some Neiman’s sales and got 2 sets of Natori PJs when they went on super super sale. I have a gray Natori robe and a black PJ set. Love them both. Would highly recommend doing something similar because they are niiice PJs and are great to curl up in/they are so soft, but because they are originally expensive/well made, I feel like I’m doing better than just ‘regular’ PJs.

    • Maddie Ross :

      It all depends on when I get home. If it’s before 8pm, I try to put on jeans and a nicer shirt or sweater, or a jersey dress in the summer. More than anything it’s just because I own a lot of “regular” clothes (like jeans) and like to get some use out of them. If it’s after 8, or I’ve had a rough day, it’s right into yoga pants and a t-shirt. In the winter, I wear one of several hideous oversized sweatshirts I’ve had since law school.

    • I’m pretty sad sack around the house (Team Sweatpants all the way). The saddest sack thing is that the only reason I’m not wearing sweatpants on any given night is because I’m too lazy to go upstairs to get them and change out of my work clothes. Now THAT’s sad sackdom. ;-)

    • I struggle with this too. If I’m just going to be around the house, it’s usually yoga pants and a t-shirt. If I have to run errands or walk the dog, I might put on jeans.

      It’s frustrating because I strongly prefer to shop for/buy casual clothes, but I wear them the least.

    • I am all about comfort when I’m just around the house (I live alone). Sweats, tee shirts, “lounge wear,” these are my staples. I am not ashamed to admit that I get excited at the end of the workday thinking about how I can go home and get comfy!

      I do try and step it up when I am going out (meaning running errands – and I definitely wear “real” clothes for dinners, shopping, and other social outings!), but as long as I’m just chilling in my living room, I figure I don’t need to look stylish.

    • I exercise after work, so when I get home I go straight in workout clothes. After workout, I go straight into rando, sad sack sweatpants (elastic cut out of the bottom) or other sundry target/old navy pj pants + oversize t shirt. At least one piece will invariably be stained. If for some reason I’m not working out that night, I go straight to the after-workout look. If I need to then go to the store/pick up pizza, I’ll swap the sweats for whatever pair of jeans is laying on the floor. If the shirt looks particularly hobo-esque, I’ll either put a jacket/fleece/hoodie over it or swap it for a clean tshirt.

      Really, the most important thing is that whatever I do, when I get home from work I have to take my bra off. It’s usually replaced with a sports bra though.

      If I want to look more “stylish” I’ll put on black yoga pants or the jeans laying on the floor and a solid color non-screen print shirt (but let’s be real, I’m probably just picking this up off the floor too). I might leave my earrings in.

      • +1 on bra removal. Often the best part of the day!

      • +2 on bra removal. I go bra commando the rest of the night. (I normally wear push-ups for my B cups. No bra might not work for everyone.)

        Yoga pants + stretchy sleepwear henley from Gap Body + no bra = SO is a happy man.

        He’s a little less happy when the sleepwear shirt is covered up with a flannel shirt or hoodie, on cold nights. But he deals.

      • Thirdsies on bra removal. Aaaaaaahhh. It’s almost time AS WE SPEAK.

    • just Karen :

      My poor husband has gotten accustomed to me saying with glee as I head up the stairs “I’m changing into stretchy pants!” whenever I get home and know I am in for the night. I used to change into jeans – now even those aren’t comfy enough for me when it’s just me and DH at home.

      • At least you’re putting on your own pants. Half the time I steal my husbands stretchy pants. (Okay, like 90% of the time). They’re just more comfy!

      • layered bob :

        ah yes. My husband has timed how long it takes me from walking in the door after work to reappearing in the kitchen wearing a stretchy dress, no bra. Usually about 45 second. If I have to wear “real clothes” to an after-work event, it’s often quicker. Accompanied by a loud declaration of “I have worn clothes for TOO LONG today!”

    • I’m always cold so usually hang out at home in terry or velour pants, tank tops and matching zip hoodies. Those sets are comfortable without being too frumpy. I avoid the ones with the writing like the plague though.

    • eastbaybanker :

      This is embarassing, but I was watching an episode of The Bachelor when it dawned on me that it was possible to look adorable while lounging around the house, instead of wearing my XL college t-shirt from 2001 and some very old greying black yoga pants.

      Taking my cues from a gaggle of 15 overly tan aspiring starlets, I found myself a bright lightweight sweatshirt that falls slightly off my shoulder, some leggings at Target, some bright tank tops from Target and J.Crew, and a grey J Crew marled cotton sweatshirt. I wear flip flops around the house in summer, and Uggs in winter.

      • You want embarrassing? I wear flip flops like you – but my winter footwear is also flip flops. Plus socks. And I wonder why I don’t have a boyfriend…

        • One word, two items…. BOOBS! :-) Ladies, men do not care if we wear strechy pants around the house. I’m pretty sure. Or socks with sandals. I think this is a female preoccupation.

        • Sydney Bristow :

          I got sheepskin flip flop slippers to fix that problem. I think that’s just a little PNW flavor that’s never going to leav me. :-)

    • I live in the South and my husband likes to keep the windows open/climate control off far deeper into the summer than any reasonable human being would (referencing the post above, does that count as a price of admission thing? Because it kind of makes me want to kill him, but he’s worth it. Most of the time.). I’m business formal at work, and have little kids who like to give me big hugs with mysteriously sticky stuff on their hands. Anyway, for all of those reasons, the moment I get home I change into a lightweight cotton jersey dress. Someone posted a link to a great one from Target a few weeks ago, I bought it, and it’s my current go-to, but I actually have quite a number of them. I sometimes wear flip-flops with them, but mostly just go barefoot. It’s comfortable and cool, but still cuter than wearing my pajamas. I am guilty of wearing sweats in the winter, but in the summer the thought just makes me want to burst into flames.

      • Yes. Summer = cute comfortable cotton dress instead of awful schlumpy PJs.

      • Yes, kids and pets at home. I hate dog/cat hair on my suits, so I change immediately when I get home into a t-shirt and yoga pants or shorts and gym socks.

    • I wear all the fun, quirky things that would be inappropriate for my office. It’s part of the fun of getting home!

      However, I tend not to buy uncomfortable clothes (for work or play) anyways, because they make me behave like a cat that’s been crammed into a sweater, squirming, scratching, and pulling in order to free myself from the annoying garment.

    • My SO is completely tired of seeing me in my black Danskin bike shorts and my Darren Sproles mock jersey (which he calls “that football thing”). He’s practically begging me to get new lounge-y clothes.

      • That said, I’ve been hanging out all afternoon in the really comfy maxi dress I wore to lunch, but he’s been installing and air conditioner and now a new light fixture in my bedroom, so I think I could be wearing anything or nothing and he’d hardly notice.

    • I totally change into nightgown and yoga pants as soon as I get home. I partly got into this habit because my ex worked from home, and was always in “hang-out pants” (those plaid flannel or cotton ones), and I felt weird being dressed in street clothes. Now I feel kinda bad about it because I am not very sexy or intriguing for Professor Bhaer when we’re at home, but damn, it’s so comfortable. Also, he claims he likes me just as well that way, so I’m totally not going to change :p

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Yes yes yes on removing the bra! BUT I have HH girls, and so without a bra things are somewhat…messy. So I basically have to wear a sleep bra of some kind to keep things in place. I think the hubby might explode if he saw me in yoga pants and a fitted t-shirt, things have devolved so far. Maybe I’ll take baby steps and start there, working my way up to the jersey dress suggestions. Also, I love the idea of the off the shoulder with a tank top underneath look, but have never been able to find anything like that. I’m thinking of what Christina Applegate wears in her new show up all night. It’s an oversized shirt, but with shoulder poking out so it doesn’t look so schlubby. Does anyone know what I’m talking about?

      • Yes! I like that for comfort at times. I usually use a tank and this hugely oversized sweatshirt and just partially zip it. It’s so comfortable. I wish I had an oversized, yet cute, shirt like she wear a lot in the show, but I’ve only found that style shirt in really short sizes. I do have two of those, though. :)

    • Skippy pea :

      Sigh, I was looking for real recommendations whereby I would be inspired to wear some nice aft work clothes not shlumpy greying balck track pants. But you guys are such enablers!

      Srsly, DH really does not like me hanging out at home in clothes like that. He himself takes effort to wear comfy but presentable clothed at home, so I feel like I should make the effort too….for both our sakes. Still looking for appropriate comfy and casual outfits to wear at home.

      • I never wear yoga pants at home. In the summer, I usually change into a lightweight lose skirt like the one below (It was a gift, I normally buy much cheaper ones at goodwill/Ross, etc), and then keep on my work shirt if it was comfortable or change into a basic fitted tee if it wasn’t. I know my husband likes how I dress at home, but I don’t dress this way for him, it’s just the most comfortable outfit in the summer. I have a huge collection of cute pajama bottoms (mostly from Old Navy) that I wear in the winter.

      • What about trying out a cotton chemise that fits your style and need for lounge wear. Check out the lounge clothing at anthro. I also like their lounge shorts, which to me are cuter and have more style than pj bottoms. I think there have been lots of other great suggestions, some of which I often wear: comfy skirts, colorful tanks, jersey dresses, sun dresses, fitted henleys.

      • Just got a super-cute split-neck sleeveless black shift at NY and Co for around $20. I purchased black, but I remember seeing yellow and a peacock blue. Fit perfectly after the first wash. So easy to just pop on (and so comfy)! I also recommend the Target jersey dresses. I’m also in the market for a polo-style dress—Lands End has some, as I’m inclined to think that they’d be cute and easy, too.

    • Definitely a jeans and t-shirt girl. On super tired days pajama pants and a tank top. I wear jeans almost exclusively when not a work. But I try to buy nice neat jeans so I don’t look sloppy.

    • This thread totally caused me to go to Old Navy after work for some new loungy clothes. Of course they’re having a sale for Memorial Day. $4 ribbed tank tops and $15 yoga pants!

    • Leggings! Cute and comfortable.

    • Also in the sad frump camp. I get home and pretty much immediately take off the work clothes and put on a pair of my SO’s old gym shorts and a tank top. I really should invest in something less schlumpy…but it’s just so comfortable. I do put on real clothes if I’m planning to leave the apartment, though, even if it’s just to run to the laundromat or bodega.

    • Such an interesting thread. Seems like I’m an outlier who loses her jacket or cardigan, maybe swaps a tailored shell for a knit, but keeps on her dress or skirt until bed-time. It helps that much of my work wardrobe is set up for travel – it looks sober, structured and reasonably stylish but is actually really comfy – A-line skirts, straight shifts, stretch wool. I don’t have kids but fix dinner and stuff in these outfits, with an apron tied on.

      Another idea might be to check out some ethnic dress shops, particularly South Asian ones, and look for cotton tunics to wear over leggings or jeans. I find that designs for ladies (colour, embroidery, the odd sequin or so) and for guys (band collars, long sleeves, muted colours or white) both work for me. Usually very inexpensive.

    • Rural Juror :

      I have an old friend from law school who had a stunning girlfriend. He once confided in me that he couldn’t even tell if she was attractive anymore because once he gets home from work she’s already in sweats. Every time I slip into my sweats after work (which is every day, immediately), I keep glancing at my bf trying to figure out if that’s what he thinks of me. I’ve been trying to sub yoga pants for sweatpants. It’s tough. These suggestions helped!

    • Government Work? :

      Old Navy is good for this stuff. You won’t look super polished, but they have basics for this at low cost. They may not have them now but check in the fall for their fleece pants. They come in grey or black and are boot cut. Warmth of sweats but with some shape to them. I usually layer a tank, long sleeve shirt, etc w these. For spring through fall, they have foldover jersey shirts that are knee length. There should be a decent selection of colours in-store right now. Pair w a tank, tee, or work top from that day if it looks okay. The rockstar skinny jeans from there also have a high spandex content and aren’t restrictive. I’ve changed into these to wear around even if I’m not going anywhere later.

      Also, check Loft or Anthropologie when they are having super discounts. You can pick up jersey dresses, nightgowns or lounge wear for under $20/piece at that time.

      • Government Work? :

        I have no idea how that linked to anthro. They have some cute stuff but much of it can be found somewhere cheaper. Link wasn’t a huge endorsement of them.

  6. You guys, I’m laughing thinking about all of us drinking our bitter, bitter coffee from our FOOEY mugs next week.

    So far we have a pretty wide geographic spread – NY, MA, CA, CA, MD, CT, PA

    So I don’t think we’ll be running into each other in the hallways. But that would be funny.

    “You will know me by my coffee mug”

    • Oh, you know I’m the MA entrant. I’m so excited, can’t even stand it. (And if someone in my office is on here and then sees me with the mug…oh well…HAI!)

    • Boom. Add Texas to that.

    • Kontraktor :

      I haven’t ordered yet, but I definitely want to.

      • Don’t forget to google a coupon code. With the 30% off, shipping is practically free!

        • Kontraktor :

          I sort of want to make a graphic for a mugV2 of sorts and use a bigger, comic sans type font, perhaps mimicing the blue+purple font style of the Crprette logo, for the word FOOEY.

          So like, it would be black comic sans for all the rest of the text, but the FOOEY would be blue/purple like the bl-g heading text.

          PS. I hate taking out random letters but I don’t know what words will put a comment into moderation.

          • I might buy that as well, but I’d probably keep it at home. What I like about mama bear’s version is that its nice and discrete. Won’t scream HEY! I’m a weird INTERNET mug!! haha.

          • Kontraktor :

            HAHA, I am a bold, weird internet mug sort of person then apparently. ;-)

            I still plan on buying the existing one.

          • If someone wants to send me the graphic with the quote i’ll slap a corporette logo on the other side of the mug and add it to the corporette cafepress store at cost…

          • Yes! The FOOEY quote and* this site’s logo? YES YES YES PLEEEZ.

          • Kat — you should also design something with a “hive signal” on one side and then the sites logo on the other side.

            (BTW…we couldn’t decide what the “hive signal” should be, so perhaps you would have to make an executive decision. You are the boss lady after all).

          • Yes! I want one too!

    • I really want one but, stupid as this sounds, I am too poor to buy it. Maybe I’ll ask for it for my birthday. Then VA could go on the list.

      • a “hive” signal — i really like that idea — especially since i’m steeped in site redesign right now. i’ll add it to my list.

        • I believe the top two choices were the outline of a high heel and the outline of a purse. Or possibly the outline of the high heel stepping on the word DOOSH (but again, maybe NSFW?) Then there was some debate about how easy it had to be to project on the night sky.

          It wasn’t our least dorky moment here in the hive. :-P

    • I’m the MD entrant! Can’t wait! :)

    • I will be ordering one from KS :-)

    • I missed this. Where do I get a FOOEY mug?

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Wait wait wait, did I miss an entire discussion about actually getting Fooey coffee mugs? I want one!

    • mamabear,

      Where can we order this? I’ve been busy and missed the discussion. I would love one of these.

      • Seattleite :

        www[dot]cafepress[dot]com/mamabearsemporium

      • Thanks, Seattleite.

        I just want to put it out there that I am not really a cafepress seller and I did this with no markup (ie, cafepress makes money but I don’t.) I just really wanted my own FOOEY mug.

        I like the idea of the other font, too, but my initial vision was that it should look a lot like the font I actually see FOOEY written in here on this blog (and, also, cafepress seems not to offer comic sans)

        http://www.cafepress.com/mamabearsemporium

        • Skippy pea :

          Heh, I will be ordering one soon!

        • ummm what is this coupon code mentioned above?

          • If you google, there is a 30% off coupon through Jun 1, I think it might be AFF30, but google CafePress coupon code and it should come up.

          • They’re having 40% off today!

        • Senior Attorney :

          I’m the CA entrant! So excited! Got an email already that says it’s on its way to me!!

          • Mine has also shipped. Sadly, I don’t drink coffee at work. I’ll thoroughly enjoy a little FOOEY with my daily a.m. tea, though.

    • Thanks again, mamabear! I just pulled the trigger on my order. (I don’t want to say where I’m from because it is a small state).

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      I want one but suspect delivery to England would come at too high a cost!

  7. So I’m summering at a mid-sized firm in a Western city this summer, and my mentoring attorney just asked me if I’d like to take a couple of depositions next month. I am very excited, but also very nervous. I’ve only been to one deposition in person, and I’ve read 12-15 deposition transcripts. This is seriously all I know in the world about depositions. I know the lawyers at my firm will give me good advice, but so far it’s all been stuff that is too many levels ahead of me – I need very very basic advice about how a deposition should work before I even know what kinds of questions to ask of my mentor lawyers. Do any of you have 1) any advice, or 2) any good resources that start from square one (or zero…)? Books, videos of good depositions, stuff like that?

    • Maddie Ross :

      You’re just a summer associate (as in, not licensed) and they are letting you take depositions? Wow. Not to be snarky, but I didn’t realize that was allowed. In any event, if you can get your hands on it, the NITA Deposition Skills textbook from the class is a good primer. Also the section in the Curmedgeon’s Guide to practicing law. There is an instructional video you can find on YouTube for having your deposition taken that would probably be helpful to watch as well. It’s really for a deponent, but it’s good to see what types of instructions deponents get.

      • Former MidLevel :

        Second the NITA book.

      • What state are you in? In some states, non-lawyers cannot take depositions. Are you sure they asked you to take the depsoition and not just attend?

        • I should add some real advice here. I would suggesting writing down everything you want to ask about. The point of the deposition is to let the witness talk as much as possible. Its not like trial testimony where you want to keep it focused. The more they say, the better. So let them talk if they want to talk. As follow-up questions to every tangent they go off on. BUT, keep your list of things you want to ask and make sure that no matter how far they veer off topic, you hit everything on your list.

          • You need an outline.

            The NITA materials have a very good description of the “funnel” of questions: broad at the top = open ended questions like “what happened next?”; middle in the middle = slightly directed questions like “after the meeting, did you talk to anyone?”; focused and the narrow bottom = “After the meeting, you spoke to Chris, correct?”

            Then there is the tree limb analogy: find out how many limbs there are, then explore each one fully before moving to the next.

            Q: why did you stop mowing my client’s lawn?
            A: because i ran out of gas in the mower?
            Q: any other reason?
            A: their yard smells.
            Q: any other reason?
            A: the neighbor pays more.
            Q: any other reason?
            A: i hate your client.
            Q: any other reason?
            A: no.
            Q: so you stopped mowing my client’s lawn because you ran out of gas, their yard smells, the neighbor pays more and you hate my client, corrent?
            A: yes.
            Q: let’s talk about running out of gas. [insert all your gas questions here.] then: is there anything else related to running out of gas that we haven’t discussed?
            A: no
            Q: let’s talk about your claim that my client’s yard smells. [repeat process.]

            But I must say I think it is a very bad idea for you to be doing this and I would do it only under the following circusmtances:

            1. someone who has worked on the case is present
            2. someone who has worked on the case discusses the goals and potential pitfalls AND what to do about them with you
            3. the same person reviews your deposition outline
            4. someone practices being the witness with you.

            Also, how is your evidence mojo? Are you prepared to hear objections, decide whether to rephrase and if so how, or not rephrase. Practice this.

          • Good description of the funnel method. I usually did “What else, what else, what else” several times before I got to “Anything else” because what else suggests there’s more. Anything else is to close off the subject.

            Try to also summarize. You’re looking to create little nuggets that are easy to pull out of a transcript or video. So in NITA’s example,

            Q: so you stopped mowing my client’s lawn because you ran out of gas, their yard smells, the neighbor pays more and you hate my client, corrent?
            A: yes.

            But you do it for all your important points.

            Open ended questions at the beginning of your funneling. Depositions with lawyers who don’t ask them are the worst because you just know there’s so much information they’re not getting.

            Don’t talk over your witness, and don’t let the witness talk over you. A gentle reminder that your court reporter will get really frustrated should suffice, but I also occasionally had to tell people that we’d get done a lot faster if they’d let me get my question out and if they’d answer my question (sometimes you get witnesses who are determined to tell their story, so you’ll get some rambling answer that is tons of info on top of the very simple/short answer to your question).

            Someone said let the witness talk as much as possible. This cuts both ways, depending on the purpose of the deposition. You could just end up having to object to a bunch of stuff as non-responsive and re-ask your question, which gets really tiring (see comment above about, “We’ll be done a lot faster here if you just answer my questions, Mr. X, without the added commentary.”). Don’t be timid or afraid to say, “That’s not the question I asked you. I asked you X.” If this is an adversarial deposition, it’s important to control the witness; it’s the witness’s lawyer’s job to get the witness’s story out. If this is more just fact-finding (say, a witness to a car accident who was uninvolved with the accident) depo, probably more okay to let them ramble on.

            Docs: I always brought my copy (with my initials in the top right corner so I didn’t accidentally hand someone else my annotated docs), copy for the witness, and copy for opposing counsel. Some people hand their exhibits to the court reporter to mark. I always marked my own (ie put an exhibit sticker on it and handed it to the witness as I said, “I’m handing you what I’ve marked as Jones Exhibit 9″), usually writing my stickers out beforehand because I liked to do descriptive exhibit names (if witness = Jones, stickers are Jones Ex. 1, Jones Ex. 2, Jones Ex. 3, etc.). Always refer to the exhibit as Jones Exhibit 1, Jones Exhibit 2, Exhibit 1, etc. It can feel awkward at first, but otherwise, you may find yourself with a transcript where it’s not apparent what exhibit you and the witness were talking about. And every time I handed the witness an exhibit, I always marked “X1″ or “X18″ on my own copy so I could instantly keep straight which docs were which exhibit numbers when I was moving between multiple docs.

            If your opposing counsel or the witness gets nasty, make sure you stay or get on the record. All you have to do is look at the court reporter and say, “I want this on the record” so s/he knows s/he is supposed to be taking this down.

            That’s some pretty basic stuff. If you have more specific questions, post ’em! Above all, keep calm, stay in control, and carry on. Chances are this depo will be a non-event, but crazy stuff does happen. I had lots of criers (it’s their or their lawyer’s job to ask for a break, not yours), a woman who had a seizure in the middle of a depo, nasty opposing counsel… one other frequent commenter on here (you know who you are, please tell the story!!!) had the most insane first depo that, if I recall, involved the witness threatening to post cell phone video of her to Al Jazeera’s website, among other things. Keep your cool, stay professional and calm, and you’ll do fine. Good luck!

      • Many states have a third year practice certificate that allows law students who have completed their first 2 years to practice alongside a supervising attorney, including the ability to take depositions and argue in court when the supervising attorney is present and signs everything.

        beccavt, the thing to remember is that you are being allowed to take these depositions because the attorney expects it to be straightforward and the witness to be relatively cooperative. It’s excellent practice and the attorney will be there to ask any follow up questions or redirect they think is necessary. Just remember that the court reporter will take down every single word you say (including every ah and um). It’s a lot like questioning a witness on the stand during trial except you’ll all be sitting around a conference room table so trial transcripts are helpful as well. Good luck and enjoy it!

        • thanks, that’s good to remember. I’ll try to focus on the basics, and not get worked up that it’s going to be complicated or there will be a difficult witness or something. :)

      • Depositions are covered under the third year practice rule in my state, and I am technically a third year as I’ve finished my second year. I will be closely supervised by an attorney, I’m sure. Two summer associates from last year took depositions, and one questioned a (minor) witness at a trial.

    • SpaceMountain :

      Please make sure you & your firm comply with your state bar’s law student practice rules. The bar may require written consent from the client. I took my first depo in law school during a clinic and supervised by a prof. This is a GREAT opportunity and you should do it if you can. If I were you, I’d write up an outline ahead of time and have the attorney review it. Find sample outlines around your firm, or in books like Mauet’s Fundamentals. I love anything by Jim MacElhaney. Also, you are going to need a cheat sheet that lists objections and the rules of evidence, in case anything comes up.

    • Dunne on Depositions is a great book.

      You’ll do terribly in your first deposition. Everyone does. The most important thing is for you to read the transcript after the deposition so you can see what you sound like on paper.

  8. Ok, so my SO frequently hangs out together with my friends from college. We all get along great and they even work at the same firm together. But recently Joe planned a birthday dinner at an expensive restaurant (where we would have to pay at least $80 each) to celebrate. Joe invited the usual group but excluded SO. Before this, Joe made some comments and tries to spend more time with me than his own gf. SO thinks that Joe secretly wants to be with me but can’t. Joe’s gf will be at the dinner too so I just thought that it was a one off event where they just forgot. But SO thinks Joe is being passive aggressive. TBH, I was pretty put off that SO wasn’t invited since the both of us always attends gatherings together. Because of this and having to shell out that kind of money for one night, I don’t want to attend the dinner at all. Joe said he’s not sure if he can change reservations to accommodate SO. SO says he doesn’t want to go at all. Should I go or not?

    • Is this a birthday for a third party, or for Joe himself?

      If a third party, who has nothing to do with the whole Joe/SO debacle, and you like the third party, then go to celebrate his/her birthday – or, better yet, don’t go and invite him/her to a separate dinner with your SO to celebrate together.

      If it is Joe’s birthday, don’t go, and question why you would want to be friends with this DOOSH.

      • Second this advice. Whether Joe realizes it or not, he is trying to push out your SO and get you for himself. Tell him, in no uncertain terms, that you won’t come without your SO.

        And make sure that you’re not unconsciously sending him signals that this invite was in any way appropriate. Do you talk to Joe a lot at group gatherings? Do you laugh at his jokes more than others do? Do you physically interact with him (hugs, hand on his arm, etc.)?

        I would make sure you’re sending the right message, and sometimes that means being a little colder than you would normally be. Try not to spend any time with Joe just the two of you. He may be reading more into that than you realize.

    • I’m less worried by the invite situation then the Joe has told you he wants to spend more time with you than his gf issue. Forgetting the dinner issue, you need to lay down the law with Joe. You’re with SO and he’s with GF and that’s that. And that may mean spending a lot less time together.

      As for the party, I do think it sort of matters if its Joe’s party or someone third party’s party. If its Joe’s party, I agree that not inviting your SO was a DOOSH move and I’d probably use the expense as a reason to beg out. Because geez. Eeewww.

      • Seattleite :

        Me, too, but I’d flat out tell Joe that the reason I’m not coming is that he didn’t invite my SO. Given that guests would pay their own way, and that couples are included, and that her SO does socialize with these people, it wouldn’t be rude to say, ‘both of us or none of us.’

    • Mindy -OP :

      Update–

      Thanks for the replies! Yes, the birthday dinner is for Joe himself. A bit more background: Joe has been with GF for 5 years and I’ve been with my SO for 4 years so it’s not like Joe and I had a crazy special bond to begin with. I just feel uncomfortable when he calls me all the time so I rarely pick up when I see it’s him calling.

      Anyway, turns out SO has a company event that night anyway so can’t make it so I told Joe that both of us won’t be attending. Joe hasn’t spoken to me since. Not sure if this will cause some friction between us but I agree that it was a doosh move to leave SO out.

  9. MaggieLizer :

    Gave my notice today. I’m excited about the new position but I’m more emotional than I expected to be about leaving the people that I’ve really enjoyed working with at my current firm. So it’s quite bittersweet.

    • Best wishes! I was in your shoes less than a month ago. I was so ready to leave that I couldn’t get why I was so emotional, but I had worked with some of these people for years (been with company for 11 years). E-mail, texts, and Facebook help me keep up with my former colleagues.

    • Right there with you— it’s tough! Congratulations on your new opportunity.

  10. Sunscreen for Women of Color :

    Hi! I am looking for a sunscreen that does not make me look like a Geisha when I apply it. Brown skin + white sunscreen = weird chalky skin look. Any suggestions?

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I have brown skin and find that Olay Complete with SPF 15 doesn’t make me look like a Geisha, but anything stronger than SPF 15 sort of does (or takes forever to rub in to the point it doesn’t). So I reapply frequently instead.

    • DC Darling :

      How brown of skin? I am a light skinned middle eastern chick and Neutrogena’s sunscreen doesn’t leave me chalky at all.

      • Sunscreen for Women of Color :

        Beyonce-brown

        • DC Darling :

          That is a sexy brown. I’m one or two shades lighter but I stand by Neutrogena. You can get sample sizes from ebay.

        • momentsofabsurdity :

          FWIW – I am Kerry Washington brown or maybe a skosh lighter, and also find I have this problem with some sunscreens.

        • My son is that color too. I am not. I look like shortening bread. I don’t mean this in a snarky way, but why do you need the sunscreen? Do you burn? My son doesn’t so we never worry about sunblock, even living in Florida where my sisters reapply their blonde kids’ every couple of hours.

          • DC Darling :

            Sunspots, wrinkles, general sun damage all happen to everyone regardless of color.

          • momentsofabsurdity :

            Even if you don’t burn or have darker skin, you should always wear sunscreen! Your skin cancer risk is lower than fairskinned people’s, but it is not, by any means, nonexistent (and in fact, is often diagnosed in later stages when it is more serious because most people ignore suspicious moles or other warning signs, assuming they can’t get skin cancer).

            In other words, sunscreen – not just to prevent burns.

          • Sunscreen for Women of Color :

            I burn. There is skin flaking off my shoulders as I type. Sigh. In general, I find that I burn in areas that have not been exposed to sun for long periods of time (e.g., winter). When I lived in a warmer climate, I burned when I first arrived, but my skin acclimated to the sun exposure over time, and I burned less frequently. Your son may not burn because of his consistent exposure to sun in Florida. Just a theory.

          • Its actually something of a myth that people of color don’t burn. They can burn, though the discoloring associated with caucasian people’s skin doesn’t necessarily show. But the pain and the peeling and other symptoms can develop. Most importantly, frequent burns (like you can get from frequent exposure to the sun in Florida) can still cause skin cancer, even if you are naturally a darker skin tone.

            I’d start using sunscreen on your son.

          • Equity's Darling :

            I’m mixed, and my mom always lathered us up with sunscreen and made us wear hats when we were kids, she’s very very pale and only burns, never tans, so she is always concerned about sun protection.

            And I most certainly do burn, particularly my nose and ears, and lips. When I’m near the equator or in the mountains, everything burns, and I blister sometimes when I don’t pay attention (which is delightful).

            Suncscreen your son.

    • microscience :

      You might try going with a ”chemical” sunscreen vs a mineral sunscreen. Mineral sunscreens have zinc oxide and other metals in them, and they physically reflect light, which will make you look lighter (or white, remember the 80s lifeguards with completely white noses?). Chemical sunscreen should have a reduced whitewash effect. I use clinique city block (I think) and they add a lot of tint to it to cover the white, but even on my skin it makes me look paler, and, sadly, covers up my freckles. I’m guessing there are sunscreens out there made for WOCs with darker tints.

    • I have the whitest skin known to human kind, so this is not based on personal experience … but what about one of the spray formulas? I think they are colorless.

    • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

      I use AMBI Even & Clear Skincare, Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30. I love it and only need one to two pumps, so I’ve been working on the same $5 bottle for about six months.

    • It’s a myth that darker skinned people don’t need sunscreen. Still at risk for skin cancer!

      For the past two summers, I slathered the kids in Neutrogena Kids+. It blends into dark skin really well, and doesn’t have the icky sunscreen smell that I remember from being a kid. It comes in a bright blue bottle and as a spray. (Spray is super fun for feet!)

      Honestly, I recommend going to CVS (with a CVS care card) and just buying whatever looks decent. Sunscreens are always changing names/formulas, and what one person finds omggreat! you might find greasy. This way you can return all the rejects.

    • Divaliscious11 :

      LaRoche-Posay works well for me, but I apply asap after cleansing, then do all my other morning stuff so it absorbs…

  11. DC Darling :

    Putting this here so I’ll commit. I am finally going to start eating right. I work out about 4x a week but man do I love my carbs.

    • I like this blog posting about changing habits. Maybe it will help you too.

      http://www.nomeatathlete.com/limitless/

      • DC Darling :

        I have dropped down to what I thought was the size I wanted to be…..yet at as a 2/4 I still have a gut. Irritating beyond belief.

        I was so looking forward to wearing skirts without having to deal with chub rub. Never gonna happen.

        • Merabella :

          Just commiserating. No matter what size I’ve been, even at my smallest, I have had chub rub. My thighs just love each other so much that they can’t bear to be apart. Once I got over that fact it made me feel better about my body.

          Good luck with the eating right. I have started that and the working out, and FWIW I feel so much better than I did before. Congrats on taking the steps to be healthier.

        • DC Darling. You may never have the perfect body. Try to remember though, if you are a 2/4 and you’ve dropped lots of weight and you’re still seeing things you don’t like about your body, maybe try to focus on the things you do like. Because even models don’t like things about their bodies. We can’t be perfect. But we can be fit and healthy, which it sounds like you are!

          • I agree. Even though I’m an 8/10 and at very healthy weight for me, in my journey to body acceptance it has helped me to see stars who have the same body shape as I do (though thinner, of course).

            For example, I am an X shape, and have the question mark thighs (although not as pronounced as they were a few years ago before losing 30 lbs). I was feeling bad/self consious about those ‘saddle bags’ until I realized that Katherine Heigl, although thinner, has the same shape thigh as I do. And then I started noticing other random people whom I would consider to have nice bodies also had that same thigh shape. It made me realize it was part of who I was and just the way I was made, and I probably will never be able to change it about me. That doesn’t mean I like those bumps, and they will never be my favorite part of my body, but it’s helped me accept that about me more than I used to. I try not to use negative words to describe my thighs any more – which was hard at first, but gets easier the more you practice it.

          • DC Darling :

            I like that. My thighs love each other too much to ever be apart. Now I need a good one for those last few inches of tire around my waist.

            In regards to perfect body, I agree that I’ve made wonderful strides but it’s frustrating to want one thing (no chub rub) and to still not get that 30 lbs later. Yknow what I mean? ah well. At least I’m working out more now.

        • Kontraktor :

          Don’t be too hard on yourself. Toning/gaining more muscle can be a good personal goal, but honestly women were sort of designed to be a bit squishy and have that bit of tummy curve. Sometimes if they pose models in the ‘wrong’ way, you can actually see that even extremely, extremely thin women have that slight hump in the tummy area. Rare if not impossible to find a truly 100% flat stomach.

          But yay for trying out new goals! I downloaded the C25k app today and am hoping to start a more healthy routine too :-)

          • and the media would hate for you to realize it, but many men like that little tummy curve!

        • Chub rub is very difficult to get rid of. Don’t kill yourself over it. Just apply some Body Glide and go on about your life.

        • Oh man–I was just discussing this with my roommate the other day, wondering how skinny I would have to be to not have chub rub. Apparently the answer is “never”. Dang.

          • Luckily, I realized this for myself when I was about 16 or 17 and one of the girls on my team who was 15 (and who, if I remember correctly, was probably still mostly pre-pubescent) was saying how she was just so worried about how she was gaining a little weight because her thighs were starting to rub. Believe me, she was thin as a rail. That’s when I realized that no matter what, my thighs were always going to rub, so I should just make peace with that fact. :-P

          • MissJackson :

            Yes. Unfortunately (?) whether your thighs touch is much more about hip size and pelvic angle than thigh size. Really. There are lots of average-sized women whose thighs do not touch, and there are also lots of very slender women whose thighs touch/rub. The good news is that this really is not about being “fat” — the bad news is that for some people there literally is nothing that you can do about it.

        • At that size, you could build up your shoulders, glutes and quads to get shapely by adding instead of carving out.

          • DC Darling :

            I am working on toning and more cardio now. I do have a very athletic build with dancer’s legs. Guess I shouldn’t be surprised I still have chub rub after years and years of kickboxing lol.

    • Want to keep each other honest? I have a little bit of a head start because I started last Tuesday 5/15 eating no dairy and no grains and writing down everything I eat. But I am not above public accountability.

      • DC Darling :

        Yes!

        Realistic goals.
        -One salad a day
        -Only healthy snacks
        -Keep up with working out
        -I will attempt to write down everything I eat

        FYI I’m only online later in the day

        • My goals:

          – exercise 3x week
          – no (or very little) dairy
          – no grains

          Should we post to each other daily for a week and then weekly? WDYT?

          • Oh please no! Use sparkpeople or weightwatchers but Please let’s not fill corporette with weight loss crap.

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Do you use any kind of tracking system? I’ve been using myfitnesspal and I love it! If you use it, we can be friends and motivate each other!

    • Jenna Rink :

      I’m doing the same thing. I’m starting a paleo diet again. It makes me feel great, but then I start craving bagels and give up. I got some paleo cookbooks out of the library and I’m really trying to focus on making a meal plan that won’t make me feel deprived!

  12. momentsofabsurdity :

    Argh. I am inexplicably annoyed at myself. I’m a fast worker, I always have been (this is probably why I would be a bad lawyer – meeting billable targets would drive me nuts). The past couple days, I’ve been working on a (time/labor intensive but requires little thinking) project with some coworkers which we just finished this afternoon. When we put together our tallies, I realized I had done more than twice the amount of work as my two coworkers (one did 8 blocks of work, one did 5, and I did 20). We worked for the same number of hours, so I shouldn’t be annoyed, and really, it’s generally a good thing for me that I can get so much done.

    I still am annoyed, though, so maybe I should plan some more “goof off” breaks into my day from here on out (kidding, kidding, kidding…)

    • DC Darling :

      Why not? If you’re getting that much done you might be setting yourself up as a miracle worker/always dumped on in the future. It’s counter intuitive but I’d scale back a bit to keep myself from being taken advantage of by whomever.

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        Maybe. I think I’m too well established as a “fast worker” now for it to look like something other than slacking now. Also, I rarely get the opportunity to directly compare my work with others so it was starkly noticeable today but isn’t usually.

    • You will be so glad for that trait if you have kids!

      Or maybe you will loose it. I have a very hard time getting to my former work intensity (ie, I’m screwing off now), think it’s because I have so many other things on my mind now that I have the kiddo.

    • Merabella :

      This happens to me too. It sucks, but I feel horrible if I don’t do work at the pace I know I can accomplish.

    • I have this problem to, and those more experienced than I at my office say I need to learn to “pace myself.” It’s rather annoying. I wish I could just go home when I finish my work instead of waiting on others or goofing off.

    • I’m like this, too, so I do build in some distraction time (like this website). I still get things done a lot faster than most. It’s been frustrating for me, as I have moved into more administrative work, to have to hand off other tasks to people who won’t do them as quickly as I could do them myself. Then again, when I have less time because I’m going to meetings and/or teaching, I don’t need as much time to get work done.

    • Are you finding yourself super-stressed? If so, give yourself some slack, lady.

      Make sure you’re working at a pace that is sustainable.

      Also, if you do work for clients, I have found that it is always better for them to have lower expectations. They then are overjoyed when I exceed them!

    • Another Sarah :

      I do this too, and I had to learn to slow down a bit, which is a horrible thing to say. But when people came to find me to tell me that the email they just sent me that I just sent a reply to wasn’t an emergency (I know it’s not an emergency, but a reply took 45 seconds so I might as well reply so I don’t forget) and to stop constantly being in emergency mode, I figured I would just slow down. And by “slow down,” I mean “appear to be slow but in reality finish in same amount of time and LOOK like I’m taking longer.” :-)

  13. Anonymous :

    I’m running a marathon this weekend with a very specific goal time. I’m nervous and excited.

    • Kick some a**!

      Don’t go out too fast. It’s really, really true. And have a great time.

      • Good thoughts your way! See if maybe there is a pace team for the race – clifbar does a pace group, and they are dead accurate…i ran with the 340 one and they got me thru in 3:38…helps keep the going out too fast jitters in check the first few miles…

      • All of this! Good luck, and run smart!

      • Anonymous :

        Good luck! Stay calm; you’re going to rock it.

    • Good luck! Trust your training.

    • Good luck, sending wishes for cool weather. Don’t go out too fast! Cannot say that too many times.

    • Weather was perfect and I ran a perfect race. Sub 3:40!! Boston bound, assuming I don’t get shut out of registration.

  14. Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

    When is it the right time to start addressing people (at first meeting) with their first names?

    Background: I just graduated from law school, but am only 24. I’ve been referring to people as Ms. X or Mr. X until they tell me otherwise, but I was recently told that I should start just saying X. This goes against my “respect your elders” teachings from childhood, so I look to the hive for some guidance.

    • Are you southern? Because I’ve found that this is something of a regionalism. In New England, definitely, if you were working with people or even working with people in affiliated organizations and called the “Mr. X or Ms. X” they’d probably think you were a bit of an odd duck (unless they had a particular place of authority or a title, like doctor or judge or something that is, or they were your client…)

      • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

        I’m from Upstate New York and now live in Denver.

        • huh. Well then…maybe its still a regionalism thing, but just more complicated then I am prepared to explain. :-)

        • Also in Denver, never referred to even the managing partner at my firm as Mr., even when a 19 year old summer associate.

        • I’m also in Denver (but from the Midwest). I say Mr. And Mrs., but I think I should break myself of that habit.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        It’s not just a regional thing. My impression from African American friends out here that the Mr. X and Ms. X is something that is taught in their community as part of good manners and showing respect. As I recall, Ms. Basil is African American. They have to break themselves of this habit at work because the Mr. X and Ms. X thing immediately indicates that they are subordinate to the person that they are talking to, which is not the message they want to send.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          “They” = my friends who are African American. I didn’t mean to make a sweeping statement about an entire ethnic group, just relaying what I’ve been told. Sorry!

        • I think the easiest way is to think about the rule your parents taught you as applying in social settings, and the NGDGTCO rule (use people’s first names) as applying in the professional setting.

          • I’m not from Louisiana (assume you are from your handle) and it took me a long time to get used to my friends’ children referring to me as Miss NOLA. I now use it regularly when I refer to colleagues by their first name to students, but I call even my older friends by their first names. When I was growing up, it was Mrs. Lastname or Mrs. Lastname, which is way too formal in a work setting.

        • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

          SF Bay Associate, good memory, I am African-American. The subordinate issue is exactly what I was afraid of, especially given my age.

          I guess I’m just going to have to start practicing in the mirror.

          • Former MidLevel :

            It gets easier. I promise. :)

          • I should have remembered that from the shoe hunt! :-)

            But really, in most workplaces, I think calling even superiors by “Mr. or Ms” is pretty unusual. This is a very “know your office” type thing, but I’d follow what other people do. And then just fake it until you make it. You’ll do great! :-)

          • I struggle with the same thing. I was raised to call adults Mr. Lastname or Mrs. Lastname, sir or ma’am. I cannot call anyone over the age of 27 by their first name. I just cannot. I try and I fail.

          • Fake it till you make it! I love that phrase.

            Yes, this will become more comfortable the more you work in an office. Using first names also asserts that you are on their professional level, in a sense that you’re a capable professional yourself, and you shouldn’t be talked down to.

      • Divaliscious11 :

        Probably less regional and more cultural…. My thought, play it by the ear. It will get easier in the workplace. Tougher will be interactions with those who were in positions of authority over you, ie… law school professors, the dean etc…. (those took anywhere from 5-10 years, and I went to law school in my early 30’s) some you will always keep- ie..my judge is and always will be Judge.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I think it would be very odd to be called Ms. FirstName in a work capacity, but I work in the northeast and grew up on the west coast.

      I tend to err on the formal side in writing (ie, if I am sending an email to a new contact, “Dear Mr. Jones, please find attached the document you requested from Boss’ Name with my edits” until they sign an email with their first name, at which point I switch. I tend to avoid calling people anything in person though, and use first names when it comes up.

      • I do the same thing with writing.

        No problems addressing people by first name in a professional capacity, but feel uncomfortable doing so with “my elders” in a social setting (hence my question, below).

    • Former MidLevel :

      I don’t think there is a hard-and-fast rule for all situations. At the office, go with the culture – if everyone calls the partners by their first names, that’s what you should do. (I was also raised to address people by “Mr.” or “Ms.” until they told me otherwise.)

    • Do you mean in professional or social settings?

    • When referring to people within your firm, go with the firm culture. More than likely, it’ll be everyone (partner down to 1st year associate) goes by first name.
      When talking attorney’s outside my firm, sometimes I starte with Mr. Lastname or Ms. Lastname, sometimes I just use first names. No particular approach seems more or less right to me. I do, however, find myself referring to older attorneys as Mr/Ms more so than attorneys closer to my own age. Though talking to one of my colleagues, he said he always calls opposing counsels by their first names since they’re equals (regardless of age/years of experience).

      • I think it is partially a firm culture thing. I have worked at some firms where people called a certain partner “lastname” as opposed to Mr. Lastname. At my last firm, everyone was first name except the very senior partner (senior citizen) who was Mr. lastname–even to the other partners who were only 10 years junior.

    • Alanna of Trebond :

      We are the same age (although different regions), and right now I am trying to stop calling random people Professor so and so. It’s apparently really stuck with me.

      • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

        Yeah, there are certain titles for me (Professor, Magistrate, Judge, etc.) that have actually replaced the first names of the person in my mind, so I just assume those are stuck.

    • I don’t feel comfortable using just a first name so I use their whole name at first (i.e. Joe Smith instead of Joe or Mr. Smith). You could try that for the first few times you talk to someone and then switch over to Joe.

  15. Someone was asking about B.B. Cream on a recent thread; this (free) article breaks it down:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304707604577422242426734830.html?mod=WSJ_LifeStyle_LifeStyleFashion

  16. I need negation help. I’m currently employed and was the number 2 on a major
    Company initiative that is expanding. The number 1 just resigned. While my current boss technically should lead, sw doesn’t have the experience, people skills or internal relationships to handle. Sr management knows the i’ve been unhappy and since the resignation took place while I’m out of town, still haven’t been able to talk to me and I know they are worried about me leaving.

    Not to blow my own horn, but in this case I’m truly a key player and not easily replaced.

    I’m unhappy working with my boss and I already have asked for a promotion, still below her level but to cover the work I’m actually doing. I’m really running the department and this is well known.

    Can I hear some stories of negation in similar situation? Id like to try for extra vacation time, better parking and participation in a leadership program. Is there anything else I should consider? I’m willing to walk if things don’t he better an have been applying for outside and internal jobs but would love to stay where I’m at.

    • I can’t quite understand what you’re saying, due to misspellings and grammar issues. Are you asking for help negotiating?

      • aw, that’s not nice. She’s finding herself in a position where she’s valuable to her company, but unhappy about her situation and would like to capitalize on her value to get some more perks. Seems clear enough to me, even if hurriedly written.

        Sorry Misty, I am too inexperienced to help :( Good luck!

      • I’ll agree simply with Snarky in the sense that I want to confirm that “negation” means negotiation and not something else that I’m not familiar with.

        But here’s what I’d do if it does. Since you’ve been unhappy with your job, I’d make a list of the things at your job that make you most unhappy. Is it just money? If not what else? Lack of authority, not enough training, too much of one kind of work and too little of another, not enough vacation, etc.

        Then, I’d think of ways in which the company could correct these problems. Not all of them are going to be salary and benefits. Some fo them may be changes in job title, new responsibilities, abilities to go to new professional development (maybe they’ll pay for you to take classes), that sort of thing. Come up with concrete suggestions, don’t just list grievances. Then seriously make a list to bring into the meeting, but PRIORITIZE. That way, you can know what you can give up on and what you wan to fight for. Personally, sometimes getting some of the structural things about a job that make you unhappy fixed are more important than making more money (though money never hurt anybody.

        • And here I was thinking, I graduated from a really good college 25 years ago, a very good law school 17 years ago, have been a professional woman my entire life, representing my own interests in the workplace and my clients’ interests in court and out — yet I have no idea what negation is. Other than that it sounds like some bad thing that happens in a therapist’s office.

  17. I am serious about loosing this weight! 25-30 lbs of it. I have clothes that I love in my closet that I am way too fat for. I love them so much that I might not notice if they are severely out of style. Where is a good place to get comments on not just a couple of pieces but a whole closet full of clothes?

    • Good for you! Good luck with your weightloss. I did that myself a few years ago & it felt great.

      As for your clothes, I’ve always found the gals at youlookfab dot com to be very helpful on that type of thing. In the forum you can post pictures in your messages & then they will politely let you know if your outfit, or clothing item, or whatever, looks good, is in style, and sometimes, depending on who comments and if you ask, if there is a simple fix a tailor could do, such as hemming a skirt to a more modern length.

    • I’ve always enjoyed watching old episodes of What Not to Wear. They do makeovers of people’s wardrobes, telling them why particular pieces are good or bad. It would be helpful in deciding what in your closet might be a keeper or not.

    • Do you have a good friend you can trust to be honest, whose clothes you like? You could also start there.

      Or, if you live somewhere nice…fly your favorite commenter out! HA! (just kidding.)

  18. Four days on call over a busy holiday weekend. Complicated by the fact that DH and I were making May call schedules at the same time, and both volunteered for the holiday weekend. Thank God its snowing here and keeping the boaters away. Saturday is the tricky day — both on call (my lovely in laws will be up the rest of the weekend, so we’re covered). Worst case scenario there is a 3 year old in a Cars sleeping bag asleep in the surgeon’s lounge in the middle of the night. It’ll be fine, right? Right?

    • Its going to be better than fine. It’ll be awesome! Or fine. Awesome may be over-shooting it. :-)

      But…this sounds like one of those weekends where you get to wear yoga pants to the ER, so plus side!!!!

      • “Worst case scenario there is a 3 year old in a Cars sleeping bag asleep in the surgeon’s lounge in the middle of the night”

        Totally fine! When I was a kid I probably would have thought going to work with mom would be the coolest adventure EVER (my mom was a nurse in a hospital).

        • When I was little, my mom ran a preschool so whenever we were sick, she took us to work and we slept on an army cot with a sleeping bag in the room where her aid (also her cousin) assembled snacks and art supplies. We thought it was fun!

        • Also, when I was little, my dad was a solo-practitioner of family law. So when I was sick, I spent the day hanging around his office. Unless he had a court appearance, then I spent it at the court’s day care. Unless the day care was closed, in which case I spent it sitting in the back of court.

          (Oh…and when I first read your post, I thought it said “worst case scenario, 3 year old in a Car sleeping…” and I was like UM that IS something of a problem). Cars sleeping bag, no problem at all! :-)

          • Solo Practitioner :

            Your dad’s court had a day care????? That’s awesome.

          • It was family court. Though I think they’ve since cut the day care in one of the budgetary cutbacks. Big shame really.

        • I grew up in a small town and my dad’s accounting office was half way between my jr/sr high school & home. Sometimes I would walk to his office, do homework in the coffee room and steal sugar cubes until he went home so I could get a ride. I had forgotten about that until this thread.

          Of course, I also remember visiting him on Saturdays during tax season when I was much younger and playing tic tac toe on the ancient computer that had a printer that was bigger than I was. We thought that computer was SO COOL because it had 3 games (tic tac toe, baseball & one other one I can’t remember).

          Good times.

    • Surgeon’s lounge–more like surgeons’ kids’ lounge. My sisters and I spent part of every Sunday morning for years and years in the surgeons’ lounges of 2 hospitals while our dad did his rounds after church. Never occurred to us that it was a problem.

      IDK what your specialties are. Some, like ophthalmologists, are more likely to be called out on drinking holidays because of the fistfights and car wrecks. I suppose others might be less in demand.

      • You are so right! Most weekend mornings, there is an assortment of kids (mostly under 6) consuming bacon, eggs, bagels, chocolate milk watching spongebob or some other trashy children’s show. It’s hysterical.

        As a general surgeon, its hard to predict whether the holiday will make it busier — its more that our population swells from 25K to 100K and increasing the population just increases the odds that something will go wrong with some one. Plus, we’re at altitude and I have a (poorly researched) opinion that it makes things get worse (appendicitis, gallbladders, bowel obstructions). Glad to know you weren’t too damaged by the time you spent in the surgeons lounge.

      • Surgeon's wife :

        Haha – my kids have spent time in the lounge too if I’m working a weekend and my husband has to take them to rounds.

  19. Boston Gardener :

    Boston recommendations for:

    1. Financial planner-type person
    2. Writing a will
    3. Lead paint inspector

    30s, unmarried, no kids (but expecting both of these to change in the next few years) own a condo and a bunch of random investments.

    • karenpadi :

      Not Boston-specific, but if you have Vanguard, consider giving them a call for financial advice.

      I was planning to find a financial planner, and called Vanguard for some other stuff. I was pleasantly surprised–I was able to talk to the guy on the phone for about 45 minutes for free! He wasn’t certified but he was helpful, knew what questions to ask, and helped me think through my goals.

      If you are writing a will, Vanguard also has a really good “asset and other stuff” inventory. It’s about 20 pages but it goes through things that I didn’t think about. It might be a helpful first step towards preparing to meet with an attorney or deciding if you need a will.

  20. Working mommas and setting boundaries- I need help! I am just back from maternity leave and have been part time for a month. I return to full time next week. I am the analytics lead on a new project, and the PM is already bugging me to be available at all hours in case issues arise. I plan to talk to my manager (not the PM) on Tuesday to explicitly discuss expectations. Any advice? I want to be a good employee, but I also want to be a good momma.

    • Research, Not Law :

      Yikes! This is my nightmare. When I leave work, I leave work. (Except for unusual circumstances).

      First off, what kind of analytic emergencies are going to arise outside of your normal work hours? I would start there. It sidesteps the mama issue and gets more to the point of whether the on-call expectation reasonable for the project to begin with. It may be that the PM is setting an unnecessary expectation, which your supervisor could help correct. Or it may be that they are saying they want you always on-call when really they mean they want to you to be available outside of your normal working hours in the case of a short-term deadline. If that’s the case, discuss how often they anticipate that to occur. If it’s not routine, then clarify that you’ll be on-call only during those times. If it’s routine, then I’d argue that the workload needs to be reconsidered – regardless of whether or not you have little ones at home.

      Oh, and for me personally, even during unusual circumstances when I’m working nearly ‘round the clock, I make my boundaries clear in a no-excuses fashion. For example, I simply state: “I’ll be in the office until 7 pm. I’ll be back remotely at 9 pm.” The reason of course being that I can spend a little time with my kids and put them to bed, but that part doesn’t need to be a point of discussion.

      I didn’t realize you were in analytics. So am I. And I’m fresh of maternity leave with my second. High five!

      • I agree with this – find out what the coverage requirements really are. Don’t make it about your mother status at all, but about understanding more about the role, what it entails etc.

    • Consulting to Analytics :

      tika, I don’t have a good answer for you except to communicate your availability clearly. I had the same problem and decided to continue my part-time a little longer. In most jobs my schedule would be considered (9 to 5, all 5 days) full time but for me its 75%.

      I’m looking for an analytics+finance position where I can be support a PM. Currently in the consulting industry and desperately want to switch. Any pointers from you experienced ladies?
      Also, I came back from mat leave with my first about 7 months ago!

  21. Does anyone have a product recommendation for sunscreen I can use on my hair part? Does something like this exist? I suffered my first part burn of the season last weekend and spent all week picking dandruff-looking peeling skin out of my hair. In the past I’ve just sprayed sunscreen on my scalp or tried to put the lotion kind on the part, but my hair is fine and blonde, so it looks fairly gross when I do that.

    Thanks… and remember your SPF this weekend :)

    • Since you’re blonde, I think you should just dust some zinc oxide into your part.

    • Couldn't Wait to Quit :

      If you need your hair to look OK later, and don’t want to goop it up with sunscreen, try a hat.

    • A hat. Pick a baseball cap or a wide-brimmed floppy one to protect your face and neck, too. Or just a scarf.

      • I have a few hats, it’s just that is is so unbearably hot and humid here in DC that wearing a hat makes things even hotter. I do try to wear my hair pulled back when I think of it to try to hide my part.

    • Weird that I, poster child for sunburn, have not one but two sunscreen-related posts this weekend!

      I saw a product in Target last week – Banana Boat’s Quik Dri Sport Body & Scalp Spray Sunscreen. Since it has “scalp” in the name, I was thinking about purchasing for my father, who is balding and sensitive about how normal sunscreen leaves his few remaining hairs so greasy. This is supposedly oil-free and non-greasy, so might work for you.

      • This sounds like a good bet. I’ll pick some up next time I’m at Target – thanks!!

    • They make SPF for hair— you could use that and make sure it gets into your scalp, too. I like the Aveda SPF hair protector, which I use b/c of my color.

    • Jenna Rink :

      Ugh, I did the same thing last weekend! I’m very fair skinned, and it was one of the worst sunburns I’ve ever had. Glad to know that scalp sunscreen exists, I will be buying some next time I’m in Target!

      • Remember BB brand and many mainstream American ones don’t have the ingredients that protect against cancer, only burns- so if it doesn’t have avobenzene, zinc or titanium oxide (or more obscure ones like mexoryl) you aren’t actually protecting from damage.

        • New poster :

          You could also try Kinesys–it’s my favorite one because it’s a very light clear spray and you don’t have to rub it in. It’s made for triathletes to reapply through races, so it’s a very fine mist. You can get it at drugstore dot com.

  22. Anyone else have to work all weekend? I actually have a pretty low-key job for a lawyer (1600 billable requirement) but we have an appellate brief due on Tuesday and of course we couldn’t get our act together to finish it in time for the holiday weekend. Sigh.

    • Me! I thought I was the only one. Sigh. People, keep posting things this weekend so I have something to read when I take breaks!

    • Me too. On call. Could be nothing, could be a disaster. Will report back on Tuesday

    • Yep. Same story here, though the project is drafting loan documents, not an appellate brief. If we had been able to get our act together at any time in the last three weeks, this would not be happening. At least I can do the work from home; I don’t actually have to go into the office. I do have a few fun things planned this weekend, though; hopefully you get a bit of free time, too!

    • karenpadi :

      Me too!

      • onehsancare :

        Me, three. A trial at 9:00 Tuesday morning, and I lost three days this week to a migraine. Not to mention trying to finish my May timesheets.

    • Yep. After an eye of the storm March and April, all of a sudden everyone wants to get their deals started. My goal is to spend a few hours outside each afternoon!

    • MissJackson :

      Yes. Incredibly, there is a NON-billable “emergency” so I’m going to work all weekend and won’t even get any billable credit.

      I’m trying to say PHOOEY and move on, but I’m grumpy about it.

    • Me too! And I work for government. Sad.

  23. A little bummed that my job search has been going so badly. Two rejections this week and I liked both those roles, very much. I have a job now (which I know makes me more fortunate than most), but I hate it (for various reasons).
    Some time ago we were talking about rettes giving their spouse “permission” to quit at a certain date, if nothing worked out by then. I talked it over one night after a particularly down day at work and got similar permission. I am very close to that date now.
    My DH (not backtracking but concerned) is telling me it is very hard to find a job if you dont have a job, and has always been advising me to hang in there if possible. I know this is the accepted wisdom. But so many leads and possible-leads have led nowhere (not hiring, got a more experienced candidate but really like you, have put hiring candidates on hold pending a ‘reorg’, and a couple of first and second round interviews that didn’t work out) that I am really disappointed and burned out and sad. I have been looking for more than 7 or 8 months now. And I’m just sad.
    Only one lead still in the pipeline (scheduled 2nd interview) but it pays half of what I make now, I would have to take a position and title cut, and it’s in a completely different industry that may just fence me in. That’s IF I get it, anyway. My background is very different so I may not.
    I guess I just need to be told to keep hanging in there. And I want to know, is it that bad if I quit?

    • Couldn't Wait to Quit :

      I just quit last month. I planned it in advance and have 6 months worth of my part of the family budget, as well as spending money and money for things I could anticipate like oil changes, hair cuts and cell phone bills saved up. I was so burnt out at my job, and had a big trip coming up, so it made sense to use the trip as a quitting point. I have just started looking, but it seems to be going well so far.

      I would not advise quitting if it will force you to eat up your regular savings while you look, unless you can easily fall back on something like waiting tables, etc. to tide you over. If you don’t have the savings, perhaps working on building a savings balance will provide you encouragement while you keep working and looking, with the expectation that you will be able to quit when you have enough money to cover yourself while you look.

    • I just came off 10 months of unemployment. It’s still quite tough out there and my situation was made more difficult by not being employed. I had to field the question (unspoken or not) of why I wasn’t currently employed.

      If you can stick it out at all, I urge you to stay employed while continuing to look. Yes, it’s really hard to job hunt in the face of outright rejection or no response but it’s easier to do that when you can pay all your bills.

    • I think I’m with your husband on this one. It is tough out there so if you can keep hanging in there it will help your chances. Also, I know the past 7-8 months of job searching have been tough on you, but imagine 7-8 more months of job searching without a job and with the added monetary stress. Maybe if you post about some of the reasons you hate your job, we can help you figure out ways to make one or more of those ways less onerous? Good luck!

    • That’s a tough spot.

      I think you’re right to be questioning your earlier decision about the “permission to quit” date. Is there anything that will change when you quit that will change the responses you are getting? You don’t give any signs of such in your post. That sounds like you should stay, unless you have some other way to pay the bills until you find something.

      What can you do to make your current situation more bearable? Changes in responsibility or office routine? Changes in routine outside the office, ways of rewarding yourself for sticking through the ickiness?

  24. eastbaybanker :

    Momentary panic regarding my choice of event dress! I’m attending a conservative church wedding this weekend in California. C*cktail attire, afternoon ceremony, evening reception. My dress is a knee-length sheath dress with a white bust; the rest is 3-inch tiered layers of black chiffon. It sort of looks like a bandage dress, but the fit and length are tasteful.

    When I bought the dress I was nervous about wearing a white-busted dress to a conservative wedding. But it fits perfectly, makes me look fantastic, and was also ridiculously cheap. I’m pretty sure I can pull it off, but can someone please assure me the dress won’t violate the Don’t Wear White to a Wedding rule?! I will avoid pearls so I don’t look bridal.

    (I’m not worried at all about wearing black with this crowd, which wears black to everything; I know black wouldn’t be suitable for other types of weddings.)

    • SF Bay Associate :

      You’re fine. Don’t worry :). Interesting non-bridaly jewelry and/or awesome red lips will help you not look bridal from the b*st up, and you definitely won’t look bridal when the black part of your dress is in view. Go be fantastic!

    • You’re fine! No body is going to think you’re the bride, which as SFBA said, is really the point. I say throw in some awesome bright red jewelry if you have it with a bright red shoe. That would look baller.

    • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

      If you are in need of a bright red shoe, the Mossimo Pearce Pump from Target is only $30 and comfortable straight out of the box. I love shoes that don’t need to be broken in.

    • As long as you don’t wear a veil, no one will confuse you. I agree that an unexpected bright shoe would look awesome — red, turquoise, teal, yellow? All would also scream “not a bride”

    • You’re fine.

      You know what would look awesome? Orange accessories. Bright orange necklace. Orange purse. Teal/navy/blue shoes.

      Personally I’m not a huge fan of the black-white-red combo. I must have worn it too much in high school or something.

    • eastbaybanker :

      Thank you, all! I’m going to take the bright lips suggestion, and see if I can pick up a pair of bright heels this evening.

      Phew. Disaster averted.

  25. Locomotive :

    This may get lost because this thread is oh-so-long already, but to whoever put up the link to the $100 Cole Haan purple violet pumps last week during the warehouse sale – THANK YOU! Thank you thank you thank you!! They came yesterday and I have been wearing them all day and I have never found a pair of heels so comfortable before. They are so beautiful and I never thought I could be comfortable in heels.

    • shhhhh. I want those shoes so badly and I’m on a shopping hiatus and you’re KILLING ME over here.

      But I’m glad they’re making other people happy. :-)

  26. Apparently my car just got broken into while in the locked, unaccessible-from-the-outside apartment garage. It’s so comforting to know I live alone in a place with criminals…

    • Two out of three roommates had their cars stolen out of our gated, must have a clicker to get in OR out, parking lot. Both cars were later found by the police and returned; however, one of the two had the same care stolen *again* out of the same parking lot. People are the absolute worst. (Also, consider moving)

    • karenpadi :

      I used to live in one of those places. But the fence was ridiculously easy to jump. Heck, I even jumped it a few times when I forgot my keys.

    • I’ve always lived in gated apartments, and one with a fully-closing garage door like you see in houses (i.e. no open airspace to jump or squeeze through). In every one, it was ridiculously easy to get in the complex if I misplaced my remote. Cars tailgate in, people tailgate in the pedestrian entrances, the gate breaks and is left open, or handymen roaming the property leave the gate open all day so they can move about freely.

      In other words, please don’t trust that your car or your person is safe just because there’s a gate. Don’t leave valuables in your car, and always play it safe and be aware when walking to/from your car.

      I’m sorry this happened to you :(

  27. I just got an unsolicited/unscheduled 10% raise. Woohoo!!!!

    • Congratulations! What a way to start the weekend!

      • Thank you! My husband has been telling me to ask for more money given that my workload will likely increase due to recent staffing changes (I know everyone here would tell–nay, order–me to ask, too), but I trust my boss to do right by me. As nice as it is to get the money, it is even nicer to work for someone that actually appreciates the work I do and to not have to haggle over pay. A wonderful way to start the weekend, indeed!

    • Research, Not Law :

      Whoa! Congrats!

      Can I rub you for good luck? ;)

  28. Lands End sweaters? :

    I was excited to stock up on some new cardigans and shells at the Lands End 30% off sale, but all the sweaters in the colors I want are an 85% acrylic/15% nylon blend. The reviews are pretty mixed WRT the material — anyone have any experience with these? I would prefer cotton but there’s not as much variety.

    • i haven’t tried any of those sweaters, so I don’t have tops, but can I just say that I am So Annoyed that LE Canvas took all their regular sweaters down for the summer!?! WTH? that makes no sense, i wear cotton sweaters to work all summer long! ggrrr

    • Kudos to Land’s End. I placed a full-price $270 order on Tuesday and haven’t received it yet. I didn’t know they were having a sale until I saw your post. I chatted with customer service and they gave me the full 30% credit.

      So kudos to OP, too. Thanks for the heads-up!

  29. Dudettes, nothing has ever so undermined my faith in humanity as “Say Yes to the Dress — Bridesmaids.” Its like a train wreck.

    It makes me want to send an e-mail to my bridesmaids weekly to tell them how much I loved them.

    • You know what this means? A new show I have to start watching.

      Train Wreck TV is my guilty pleasure – Real Housewives of New Jersey? check. Mob Wives? check. Shahs of Sunset. Oh my yes.

    • I have a harder time watching the Atlanta show in general (let’s jack her up!), but the Bridesmaids spin-off is a total train wreck. That doesn’t mean I’ve stopped watching it, of course…

  30. I will be having a major career transition in September, as in taking a new bar exam, moving to NYC and don’t yet have a job. It’s due to the husband’s job, and I am totally on board with the move, but it definitely means that there are a lot of unknowns on my end. I will have 2 years of IP litigation/transaction experience, and I think I will go nuts if I have to continue working in a firm. I have massive anxiety 24/7 and I can’t keep it up. It is just a very bad fit for me and my sanity.

    I want to go work for a company or start-up, doesn’t even have to be entirely legal, where I can put some of my knowledge to use, but also learn new things, like e-commerce or HR, or whatever…I need a change. But where do I find these jobs? I have no idea where to look for these things. With firms, you can figure out if they have your practice area, see who they list as the hiring partner, etc…but if I don’t even know which company I want to work for, then how do I go about finding the job?

    Anyone have great job search strategies, or have good stories about transitioning away from the firm experience without having a lot of practice years under your belt?

    • Well, having done the move-to-NY-as-junior-lawyer bit, now living in Seattle as person working corporate with many start-ups bit, I will add I didn’t see a lot of that in NYC. Mucho law, finance, etc. But could just be that I didn’t know about it. I recently read about an incubator org based in NYC that helps launch entrepreneurs there but forget the name- it was in Inc. magazine.

      • There’s a ton of start-ups in NYC. DH has worked at several in recent years and his friends at many more (in a technical capacity). Two of his former coworkers are currently starting-up startups. They all get jobs through word of mouth though. I would look forward to some heavy-duty networking.

    • Joan Holloway :

      There are so many tech meetups and startup events here in NYC all the time. I would suggest getting plugged into some of these things right away. Perhaps also look into a resource like In Good Company–not that you want to start your own practice, but they know people who know people . . . networking. The advantage of these activities is that you’ll begin to build a network of contacts. Hopefully you’ll enjoy yourself at the same time. It’s an active way to see what’s out there and to talk to people to figure out what you’d like.

  31. I am seeking help from the hive to track down an ad that I cannot seem to find, now that I need it. For what feels like 10 years, I have noticed a one-inch ad in the New Yorker featuring a glass bowl engraved with two names. I want to get one of these for a wedding present for a young couple and now I cannot find the name of the company. I googled like crazy but none of the results seemed as nice as the one in this New Yorker ad. Any help would be appreciated.

      • I have no idea if this is what you’re looking for, but may I just say that I registered for some of my wedding presents at Simon Pearce and everything they sell is beautiful and of amazing quality (and hand-blown in their factory in Vermont). They really are a company well worth doing business with.

        Pitch done.

        • Seconded – we received some off-registry gifts from Simon Pearce, and all of them were kept with love! (This should be particularly impressive given the “should I buy off-registry” threads on here…)

          • You guys are amazing! This is exactly what I was trying to find. They are a broke young couple (he’s recently back from Afghanistan) who eloped to avoid family drama. My SO and I have agreed to send them one beautiful thing to commemorate the marriage and a big fat check to say, “Thanks for avoiding the family drama!”

          • Oh, that’s lovely! You’re so sweet.

      • That’s gorgeous. I wish I could afford it as a gift for my sister’s wedding! You’re definitely giving an amazing gift.

    • We did vases for our parents one year through Simon Pearce — I don’t think that is the same company with the advert in the New Yorker — they turned out beautifully but extremely pricey. So if SP comes back with a really high number, keep your eyes open for the other company.

      I adore Simon Pearce. Would convert all my glassware to them in a second, if I could. Their seconds are great, too.

  32. Blonde Lawyer :

    Memorial day question –

    Growing up, my family always visited the graves of our deceased and planted flowers over memorial day weekend. None of my friends’ families did this. Today, someone at my office mentioned having to pick up flowers for “the graves.” I seriously had begun to believe my family was the only one that did this. Certain family members made it a real somber occasion instead of a fun summer is here party weekend.

    So now, I’m trying to figure out if it is a regional thing, heritage thing, veteran thing, etc. I’m guessing some of my friends’ families didn’t follow this tradition b/c their family was scattered across the country and not buried at the cemetery down the street like my grandparents.

    So — did you/do you visit graves and plant flowers at them this weekend? If yes, any idea why?

    • layered bob :

      Yes, we did growing up. Now I live very far away but my family still does and I will send flowers for the graves, if I remember in time. And then we go eat pancakes at the high school after the ceremony in the cemetery. (Still not Memorial Day without pancakes.)

      I didn’t realize this was not a thing. As data points, my family does have veterans. We’re rural and Midwestern.

      • Another Sarah :

        My rural midwestern family with veterans does the same thing. My Aunts and Uncles (and Mom, but she’s not in the area anymore) coordinate to bring my Grandma (who I think is the only one left out of her brothers and sisters) to go to “visiting” with flowers.

    • We always planted flags on veterans’ graves with the Boy Scouts. We were the only branch of the family to live in Kentucky, so there were no nearby family graves to visit.

    • We visit my hubby’s grandparents on Memorial Day and Veterans’ Day and lay flowers. His grandfather was a Veteran (1918 US Naval Academy grad) and we used to take his grandmother there every year to lay flowers before she died. She was one of my favorite people so I like to continue the tradition. The cemetery has the flag that he was presented with and they fly hundreds on Memorial Day, Veterans’ Day and July 4th.

      His grandparents were both mid-western and traditional. All of my family members are buried on the East Coast or in the South and I’m on the west, so we’ve never done it for my side.

      So I guess that this doesn’t answer your question. :)

    • We did on some, but not all Memorial Days. Usually the veteran relatives, like my great-uncles who fought in WWII and the like. We would also bring extras to visit the graves of other veterans who didn’t have flowers.

      So not alone. But we also still had a party, it was just part of the day.

    • I’m not this weekend, but I remember doing this with my parents when I was younger. Usually on Sunday after church. My grandfather was a vet, but we did this before he died too. Now that I think of it, I always associate this more with Easter time than Memorial Day, but it has been a while so I’m not sure. Either way, it wasn’t expressly tied to veterans b/c we did it for all graves, vets and non. We only did it for relatives buried nearby. For what it’s worth- white, protestant, blue collar fam but not especially military-oriented (there are several vets in the wwI/II/vietnam generations, but none current), grew up in rural area on east coast.

    • I remember visiting the graves and planting flowers when I was a kid. But, we lived about 3 blocks from the cemetery where my great-grandparents, grandfather and now many relatives (including my mother) are buried. We could ride our bikes up there and did, and also went sledding on the side of the hill that didn’t have graves. I think we made more of a big deal about it on Memorial Day. Now I live in a place where it is the custom to visit graves and take flowers on Nov. 1 (All Saints Day) and I don’t live anywhere near where I grew up and neither do any of my family. I feel badly that I haven’t been to my mom’s grave in so many years.

    • SO’s wardrobe update!
      After much delay, last weekend we went to Nordstroms and the SA there worked *miracles*. He talked my SO out of pleated pants, into slim-cut up shirts, and may have slightly opened his eyes to the world of men’s fashion. The concept of “quality clothing” really got through to him- clothes that will last and look nice are worth the expense. (…the expense here being spending any money at all on clothes!)
      We walked out with a pair of slacks, two dress shirts, and then hit up Gap and Sears/Lands End for more basics. Still a work in process, but I’m so glad I can finally throw out those pleated pants.

      • sorry, I have no idea why that ended up as a reply.

        • Oh god. Do you think they could convince my husband to wear non-pleated pants? He refuses. :-P (Also, sorry to comment on this in such a serious thread, but did want to reply to this.)

        • MissJackson :

          Yay! I’m so glad that you had success at Nordstrom! I told you that they are miracle-workers!! Honestly, if they converted my husband, they can convert anyone! TCFKAG, the Nordstrom sales associates can convince anyone to get rid of pleated pants — I was sure that my husband was a lost cause, too.

    • My family has always done this with all deceased relatives – not just veterans. We don’t typically make a huge deal of flowers, but we’ll put some flowers or such at each site, pray, move to the next one.

      I’ve also noticed now that very few of my friends do this, though, so I don’t know how common it is. It might just be something people don’t typically discuss.

      • New poster :

        I can only remember doing this occasionally on Memorial Day, but there was usually always some kind of ceremony elsewhere (like on an aircraft carrier with a band). My granddad was a Pearl Harbor survivor, in San Diego, so big Navy town.

    • Before it was Memorial Day, it was Decoration Day: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memorial_Day

  33. Jenna Rink :

    A few days ago, my neighbor had a small fender bender in our driveway while my outdoor cat (a stray who I adopted and he refuses to stay inside during the day) was nearby. I’m worried that my cat distracted her and caused the accident. Is this just my outdoor cat guilt speaking (I have a lot of it) or should I be offering to help out with the repairs?

    • This is definitely not your fault. Not even close. Even if the cat distracted her, that’s on her- imagine if you rear-ended someone at a light and said you were distracted by their wacko bumper sticker. Is it then their fault? Of course not.

      • Jenna Rink :

        Thank you! I kind of recognized that I was being silly, but every time I saw her bumper I started feeling guilty again. A neutral opinion is just what I needed!

    • Seattleite :

      Don’t feel guilty about your outdoor cat. My two, adopted from shelters, were ‘street kitties’ for several months before they were trapped and brought to the shelters. Although they clearly love a constant source of food and petting, warm fires, and soft beds, they also turn neurotic if not allowed to go outside. I lived in a high-rise for two months last year, so no outside access, and one cat got really depressed and anxious. Moved to a townhouse and he bounced back immediately.

    • They live in a neighborhood. There are distractions sometimes. It’s not your cat’s fault. They should have been paying attention to driving, not your cat.

  34. My SO told me last night that he is definitely moving to his other home (in another state, a significant distance away), as planned, in the fall. We have been together six years and I guess maybe I thought he would change his mind and his plans, but he’s going to do it. He wants us to go along for the next few months as if everything’s okay and I just don’t know if I can do that. I love him and I guess, despite “knowing” I thought he might change his mind. I feel like, at my age, I shouldn’t be having my heart broken like this. But he’s the first man I’ve ever had in my life who really treated me well. This really sucks. We were supposed to be on vacation together this week and I don’t even know if I can look at him without being angry and upset.

    • I’m so sorry. I was in a somewhat similar sort of situation several years ago with my now-DH where we knew he was moving away in several months and, at the time, we thought it might be the end of the relationship. Obviously, it wasn’t. But before he left, I really thought it was. I remember how awful it was to have a looming end to something that was otherwise going so well. What we ended up doing was deciding to just take it one day at a time, both before and after the move. He’s here now and you love him, so don’t pre-emptively end it (kind of the romantic equivalent of don’t leave before you leave). Try to recognize how good it is and enjoy it while it lasts. I know this is so much easier to say than to practice, but it helps to sort of accept that the future is out of your control and all you have is the present.

      What does he want to happen when he moves? break up and move on, long-distance, you moving? Do you disagree with/resent his reasons for moving?

    • This does really suck – I’m so sorry to hear it. But I wouldn’t want “to go along for the next few months as if everything’s okay.” And I would not go on vacation with him. You deserve to move on with your life – not to be tied down to a guy who has already told you he is going to leave you.

    • Oh NOLA! That sucks!

      I’m not clear though. Is he moving and intending to end the relationship? Or is he moving for other reasons and trying to keep your relationship going long distance?

      If the former, I’d kick his lazy ass out today.

      • Well, that’s the weird thing. I had always thought that when he moved that would be it. Then again, I thought that when he retired, and that’s now two years ago. He lost everything in Katrina and relocated within the state, but still worked here. A couple years ago, he had the opportunity to buy his dream house in a location that he has always loved and planned to move to when he retired (he retired fairly young in a political situation). He goes there for 2-3 weeks at a time now and has seemed to enjoy the stimulation of having one foot in each place. I can’t go with him (I have to work) so we videochat every day and he says he misses me horribly and can’t wait to come “home.” At any rate, now he’s looking to swap things – move there and make it his primary residence but come back here to see family members and check on his house. I think, if I were willing, he would continue the relationship long distance. It’s weird because every time we have thought, in the past six years, that something had changed dramatically and we might not be able to see each other as often, etc., it’s all worked out fine so I’ve just taken a “let go of having to know how it’s going to work out” attitude and everything’s been great. This, I’m not sure.

        • Okay – at first it seemed like he wanted it to end when he left. But I still don’t think it’s wrong for you to be upset and not want to “play pretend” until he leaves.

        • NOLA, it sounds like your SO wants to keep things vague because it works for him But you are perfectly within your rights to insist that the two of you have a specific plan for continuing your relationship. Or not. But after six years together you need to know.

          On the other hand, if what you really want is a conventional marriage, this is probably not the guy for you.

          • You are a wise woman, mamabear, and I think you’re right about him wanting to keep it vague. I’m not sure if he’ll commit to a specific plan. It’s a long drive (9 hours) and not really a great place to fly to and from. We’ll see.

            I don’t know if I need or want a conventional marriage at all. I’ve been married, I’m too old to have kids, and, since I’ve been with current SO, I’ve become so independent that I don’t even know if I could live with someone, let alone be married. I work a lot, work out a lot, keep house on my own schedule, and I like it that way. That’s why this relationship has really worked for me. He takes me out of my stress zone and keeps me mentally healthy. He has done a lot for my confidence and he is a tremendous support for me about my work. But I also have my space and I was completely smothered in my marriage. So there it is.

          • ((((((hugs)))))) Nola

        • NOLA, you sound pretty ambivalent about what you want out of this relationship, and you’re 6 years into it. Maybe that’s a sign that while you really like and care for this person, he’s not really a long-term keeper?

          Also, hard to tell exactly how this went down, but it sounds like he just made a major life decision without meaningfully involving you. You deserve better from a partner. Hard to see why this would be the last major life decision he unilaterally makes.

          This situation sucks. Keep us posted.

          • Hmmm… well I don’t feel ambivalent. I love what we have, which is a loving supportive relationship where we are passionate about each other but we don’t live together and don’t expect marriage. I know that’s probably not realistic long term for most people but it has worked for us so far. For various reasons (past infidelity when married, his very conservative political and social views, he says he has a bad temper), I don’t know if I would marry him.

            We went out to dinner tonight with a really good friend and he didn’t want to talk about it with her, but she knew and brought it up and she said when we dropped her off that she may never see him again and started to cry. He won’t admit that it could be true!

            I did get him to talk about it a little bit this afternoon and I told him that it hurt me that he was being so matter of fact about it and acting like he could just turn off our relationship. He apologized and got pretty emotional. I guess we’ll see.

            I’ll keep you all posted.

          • It sounds like you have some stuff to work out with him. Even if you two aren’t on a marriage track, partners talk about life decisions and do what’s right for each other and the relationship, not just what’s right for one of them.

            Sending lots of hugs.

        • Divaliscious11 :

          Are you going to be in the same state? Next state over? In the same country? Piece of cake, dear, piece of cake!!! A relationship does not depend on being in the same house or within a certain set of miles of one another. As long as you are together in your hearts, distance is just a bump in the road….

    • Divaliscious11 :

      What are you upset about, exactly? The prospect of a long distance relationship, or that he didn’t change his plans for you? Why is he moving? For work or some other opportunity? Also not sure why your upset if he told you this is what he intended? Long distance relationships are challenging, but they are completely manageable, but it sounds like there is something else you are upset about…..

  35. Sale TJ: apply Promo Code SALE20 when purchasing sale items on Bloomingdale’s website – the site doesn’t provide that valuable detail; I simply googled “Bloomingdale’s Promo Code;” I just used it and saved a lot, so I wanted to share this info.

  36. anon in DC :

    I just joined Netflix and am confused… Do the series rotate? I was looking forward to watching The Big Bang Theory and all of Downton Abbey but they aren’t available. Will they ever be back or did I miss out?

    Also, what series/movies would y’all recommend? Thanks!

    • Midwesterner :

      You may want to try Hulu for BBT and PBS for Downton Abbey.

    • Licenses expire and Netflix acquires new ones all the time, but the TV shows are fairly consistent. I’m pretty sure that I saw Downton Abbey on there earlier today, they only have the first season now, but I’m sure in a few months they will have the second. (I got impatient and bought it on iTunes, $2o well spent!) I don’t recall every looking for Big Bang Theory, so I can’t say. Some series that I’ve watched are Friday Night Lights, Louie, Dexter, Parks and Rec, and Breaking Bad. All recommended!

    • anon in DC, check out Sherlock on PBS. You can watch Season 1 on Netflix on Demand. I -think- most of the Season 2 episodes are available on PBS online (look under Masterpiece Theatre).

      Also, Revenge. *Love* Revenge (though, give it a few episodes–it took me probably until episode 3 to really, really TOTES OBSESSED get into it).

      • Revenge is the most delightfully soapy show on tv right now. It has really grown on me. And the finale was amazing!

      • Adore Revenge. So soapy, yet so good. It walks the line of intense cheese, but I have the sense that the actors and writers, etc know that they are producing cheese — they aren’t thinking they’re making The Wire, so in that way it’s great.

    • I spent a long time looking for rental options for BBT and never did find them. We ended up purchasing all seasons. I was really annoyed. I do love the show now that I’ve caught up and started watching it regularly again.

      • I think episodes of BBT are on three different channels here. I have a hard time following them in order but I’ve probably see most of them by now, just not when they first air. We are obsessed with it. I even have a Knock Knock Knock Penny! tank that I wear to the gym.

        • Gail the Goldfish :

          Jim Parsons signed my program tonight! (He’s in the play Harvey this summer in between BBT taping seasons).

          Sorry, just needed to share that exciting bit of geek fandom.

      • I noticed it was at redbox. I’m not sure which season(s), though.

    • As I posted below, I’m watching Drop Dead Diva right now on Netflix…though be aware, may annoy if you are a lawyer. :-P

    • White Collar on Netflix.

      • Ditto – anxious for Season 3 to get added. Must resist buying it on Amazon VOD.

        • We gave in and bought it on Amazon. Easier to stomach once I realized that the cost of the beer we were drinking while watching was greater than the cost of buying an episode.

          Also, I discovered recently that my library has all of BBT available to check out, so for those of you looking for it, that’s another option.

    • Downtown Abby is on netflix

    • Anonymous :

      I am waiting for Game of Thrones to become available on Netflix.

      • Gail the Goldfish :

        Just a warning–it won’t ever be available on streaming, most likely, just discs. HBO currently refuses to allow their shows on netflix streaming.

  37. Midwesterner :

    Anyone have experience with making their own work clothes? I’ve had some success with clothes that didn’t matter. Fleeces for layering in winter/outside exercise; casual skirts for spring/summer weekends. Usually for under $5/piece including fabric, notions & patterns.

    I’m wondering if this could be expanded to basics such as work skirts, shells, or basic pants or shirts. There is a store nearby that will put the vogue patterns (basic pants, skirts, wrap dresses in a more modern take) on sale for $1.99, $2.99, or 25% off and suiting or shirt fabric for 50% off, depending on the week. Store coupons can be added on top of the discounts.

    A coworker with experience in this area said it is cheaper to buy the clothes on sale than making them. She is a 00 or 0 though and may have a different experience.

    • Midwesterner :

      Also, those that sew their own clothes and are fans of the skirt, the pink sprite is on sale for $19 right now. I tried they grey on in-store and the stripes weren’t that bad. Those that can make patterns from intact clothing could have a cheap, flattering skirt and pattern for low cost. Others could take it apart and have a pattern that way without too much outlay based on the cost of paper patterns.

    • One of my colleagues learned how to sew and she’s saved a lot of money making curtains, etc. She also got into making dresses for awhile and she found some patterns and got the fit just right, then she could make the same dress in different fabrics and they looked different. She was talking the other day about possibly sewing a formal gown for a Carnival ball because they can be so expensive and she could experiment between now and then.

    • layered bob :

      I’ve done this, but only when I lived closer to my grandparents and could use my grandma’s serger to finish things. I just have a sewing machine myself and prefer serged finished edges.

      Can’t do pants – they are way too complicated to cut and fit, with waistband, pockets, zipper, beltloops… no thank you. Totally not worth the effort.

      Basic pencil skirts I can do and have done. (Used a pencil skirt that I had already as a pattern.) I’ve never done a dress for work but I’ve sewn sundresses for casual wear – I like to do that because I can alter the bust/neck/waist/length to accomodate my tall, busty frame. I like to sew so I do it as a hobby when I have time, but I don’t think it’s necessarily cheaper – it does take time, so even if the fabric/pattern is cheap cheap cheap, my time to make it is “expensive.” And it can be stressful.

    • Skirts and shells will be easiest, followed by pants, and shirts. The hardest part will probably finding fabrics – the bigger chain stores have tons of fleece and quilting cotton, but tend to be a bit thin on garment fabrics. Work wear will look more polished when you get the finishing details right – finished edges, button holes, interfacing, etc.

      You’ll probably get the most bang if you have a couple of patterns you are comfortable with (and flatter you) and can crank it out in different fabrics. A serger is helpful for using with knit fabrics, but isn’t strictly necessary for other fabrics.

    • I’d love to sew some clothes! I’ve started with a few small projects–aprons for friends’ kids, simple backpack for DS, pillowcases. Problem is, I don’t have a machine so I either have to do it by hand, borrow Mom’s when I visit or use odd substitutes, like lots of fabric glue. I’m ready to buy a machine, but need advice on what kind to get. I don’t have lots of room or money. I’m back and forth between having one built into a table that swings down when not in use and a portable one that I could stick in the closet when I’m not using it. Do any of you sewing Corporettes have advice on machines?

      • Midwesterner :

        I have one of the singers from target black friday. Not the best machine available but serviceable w button options and stitch width ca be adjusted

      • Silvercurls :

        I got my current machine (vintage 1960s or 1970s) from a store that sells & repairs sewing machines and vacuum cleaners. If you don’t want or need any of the more modern features thins might be a good route for you. I’ve never looked online for used sewing machines but that might be another option.

    • I wear clothes I’ve made at least twice, usually up to 4, times per week. I started sewing again (after learning as a teen) in order to get clothes that fit me properly (small waist, full thighs & backside).

      Skirts are definitely the easiest and quickest to sew and fit. I doubt I’ll ever buy a pencil skirt again. Tailored shirts with a stand, etc, are probably the hardest (outside a tailored jacket). Of course, I have fitting issues with shirts that I haven’t worked out yet, so that might be talking there. There are simpler patterns for tops out there, though. Pants really aren’t that bad – there are great youtube tutorials for sewing a fly, etc. out there that I use every time I sew a fly. I’m actually wearing pants I made right now, and they fit without gapping at my back waist! I also sew dresses fairly often, and spent a couple of months getting a sheath dress pattern fitted properly, and I have plans to make several sheath dresses. Of course, my plans always outweigh my time.

      In the last year or so I started sewing knit fabrics on my regular non-sewing machine. They are fast, easy, easy to fit, and very instant gratification type projects. LOVE sewing knits now!

      If you’re looking for a good website, patternreview dot com has an active community and an extensive database of pattern reviews.

      The biggest issue you will have is getting quality fabrics. Sure, you can get cheap suiting fabric, but it will look cheap. I plan on venturing into wool pants this fall. They may not cost less, especially when my time is taken into consideration, but sewing is my hobby, and I know I will get a good fit. And nothing beats that sense of satisfaction when you sit back and look at what you’ve created. Oh, and when someone compliments you on something you’ve made (not knowing you’ve made it yourself). I love that too.

  38. Ladies, I could use some moral support. I’m a low-level associate in BigLaw and I’ve been killing myself all week trying to write multiple briefs by end of the weekend, all on tough issues. Just found out that one of them has been lost to cyberspace in its entirety. The third is not even started. Also, I’m pregnant (work doesn’t know yet). I just feel like I’m not cut out for this. Combined with the fact that I’ve now had to cancel the only vacation I’ve scheduled since I started (plus work this whole weekend) and that I feel like I’m risking the health of the baby by not getting any rest and living under this much stress (and the nervous breakdown I just had on the bathroom floor upon realizing that my brief has disappeared). . . it just seems so pointless. how are you supposed to not get too upset when your emotions are out of control and you’re trying to meet unreasonable work expectations? I just need a break, I guess but there is no end to this work load in sight and my efforts at expressing that I have too much on my plate are completely ignored. Oh and we added up my student loan balance — $160k so I can’t quit any time soon. Guess I’m just looking for some internet hugs or words of wisdom.

    • Midwesterner :

      Have you looked at jobs at the federal level? In the Midwest, there have been a few AGAs posted with Justice. They’ve also had a few that the position has been negotiable. Don’t forget Revenue, Patent, Defense, Labor or Treasury if your specialty aligns with them.

      Depending on when you graduated, you may be eligible for forgiveness on some of the debt. I’ve also seen people negotiate salaries at higher than the step 1 level so don’t just go by the base salary. Some have been able to get years of service credit that puts them in the safe zone in case of a RIF or increased placement order for new open positions if that occurs. Since the government can’t accept “free” labor, you would be paid at minimum a straight rate for every hour you worked over 40 hrs/week. They also tend to support and pay for professional accreditation since they are currently fighting the government employee stereotype with the public over salary/tax issues. Leave, and advance leave in case of pregnancy, tends to be inline with liberal private industries. (we had someone show up so sick on her first day that the nurse wouldn’t let her in the building bc of H1N1 that was actually pregnant and they held the job for her).

    • It sounds like a rough situation, and I can’t really chime in about the work, other than to be generally sympathetic, but I do want to reassure you about the baby.

      When people talk about maternal stress affecting fetal health, they are talking about famine, war, refuge status, prolonged malnutrition, violence, etc. They may (MAY) be talking about long hours on your feet with dehydration, poor nutrition, cigarette and alcohol use, etc. They are not talking about white collar stress from professional jobs. This is not to say that being pregnant isn’t an added stress on YOU, and the pregnancy isn’t making it harder to deal with all that’s going on in your job. And how this all plays out may be a telling lesson about how you want to ultimately structure your baby. But you are NOT hurting the fetus by working long hours and writing briefs and feeling like an emotional wreck. I was given the green light by my OB to work 80 hours a week as a surgical resident, including being up for 36 hours every four nights, and standing for long periods of time in the OR. Drink plenty of fluids, eat healthfully, take 10 minutes breathers when you need to, stretch your legs and go for walks but don’t worry about whether this is harming the fetus.

      • Sorry, I meant structure your work, not structure your baby. I’m assuming your baby will have arms and legs in the usual places, Etc.

        • ECMD…I have NO idea what this was in reply to anymore. But I must say, it’s one of the best non-sequiturs I’ve seen in awhile.

          • For reasons I can’t explain, the (longish) post is in moderation. Then I posted the correction without realizing its in moderation. I thought about posting another correction to my correction and realized that might be OCD. So I just left it and thought, well at least someone will laugh.

          • Oh yeah, in context it seems so normal now. :-)

          • Yeah, when I realized the mistake I was like, oh man, that’s a funny one. I was thinking so many thoughts at once evidently…

          • It DID make me laugh!
            But now that the full thing is up, it’s a very comforting message (imho)

    • Have yourself a good, ugly cry. Sucks to do it in the firm bathroom, but shiz happens, and you’re certainly not the first person to have a firm-bathroom meltdown (hi!).

      Can you reshedule your vacation so you have a light at the end of the tunnel?

      It always helped me to remind myself that I was getting really good experience. Bill 300+ hours in a month? Yeah, that blew. But good experience under my belt. Walking home from work after 10 p.m. yet again? Totally blows; but I was developing valuable skills. It ultimately added up to something that allowed me to get out of Biglaw (for TX) and to an in-house job that I <3.

      Hang in there. This too shall pass.

    • Joan Holloway :

      Anon, I’m so sorry you’re having such a terrible weekend. Can you go home, get some sleep and start again in the morning? It sounds like you really need some rest, and there are 3 full days left to this weekend.

      You say that you’re low-level, but I suspect the people above you think very highly of you to be giving you so much substantive work. There are other first year associates who probably have no work because they haven’t earned the trust that you have.

      Here’s the thing: if you screw this up and destroy your reputation–and I highly doubt you will–you still have time to earn the money to pay off your student loans. Worst case scenario: you get a bad review and are given a few chances to redeem yourself but don’t. In that time, you save every last cent of your salary to pay off your loan. You do NOT live a lifestyle that cannot be sustained apart from Biglaw*. Continuing the worst case scenario, you are given a deadline by which to find another job, and you find one–you WILL because you have great experience and are obviously very smart–and life continues.

      The hardest thing about being a junior associate is the complete lack of control in your life. Add to that a little life growing inside you, and I can’t imagine what you must be going through. You’re allowed to feel emotional.

      Try to decide what’s important to you and what you will and will not compromise on. Biglaw is dysfunctional. There is no balance. If you don’t stake out what you need, no one else will give it to you. You may not be cut out for Biglaw for the long haul, but there are ways to get through it until it serves your purposes.

      *Having said all this, the one Biglaw lifestyle expense that I feel is totally justified is a life coach, preferably one who has worked in Biglaw and can advise you on all this. I had one named Elena Kaspi–I haven’t talked to her in ages, but she was amazing.

      • Joan Holloway :

        Okay, I miscalculated how many days were left in the wknd when I wrote that last night . . . but I still hope you were able to get some sleep.

    • Working Girl :

      I have been there and it was exhausting during those first few months when I had to hide the pregnancy. Here is the thing: most big firms give great maternity leave. Stick with it and before you know it you will be holding your baby while not even thinking about work and while getting paid for 12-18 weeks to bond with your child. It’s worth it. Once you go on leave, you can re-evaluate. You’re almost there.

    • You’re not alone; nobody’s really cut out for over-full time work and pregnancy. It’s an absurdity that modern US society has put us in. I was recently stunned in an on-line discussion to hear how many women said they had taken naps on floor of their office; until then, I thought I was the only one! It’s rough on everybody. If work doesn’t know yet, I’m guessing you’re in the first trimester. That was the hardest for me, physically and emotionally, and I think second tri is usually the best for most women. The closest to words of wisdom I have are that the stages of pregnancy and early childhood change fast so even though it may be hard, you don’t have to put up with it forever. (Same thing is true of the sweet parts–that’s why there are so many cliches about how fast it goes). Hang in there!

  39. Ladies, its clearly late in the weekend and I don’t know if people will see this. But my hubbie is away this weekend so I’m watching some new television.

    I’m watching Drop Dead Diva on Netflix on the advice of ladies on here. But I don’t know how far I’m going to be able to make it. I’m really struggling with how fast and loose they play with her whole “lawyerly” job. I mean, what type of lawyer is she? One week she does a torts case, the next employment and the next family law (which…btw…is her own parents divorce…can we say BAD IDEA!!!!???)

    Anyway. What sort of generalist is she? What sort of law firm is this?

    • Further question…I just got the the episode where she’s celebrating her new body’d birthday. And she didn’t know how OLD she was (or that it was her birthday.) HAD SHE NEVER LOOKED AT HER LICENSE???? Seriously, this show is pretty enjoyable, but some of the little inconsistencies are driving me cray-cray.

      • I’m not a lawyer, but I’ve worked in law. I’ve had the same issues with the show – too many inconsistencies with her profession and logic.

    • Heh, I think the show is cute but I really have to turn my brain off. Also, I’ve discovered that I can handle shows making up substantive law and I can handle them playing fast and loose with things like how long trials take, but when they start screwing around with legal ethics or criminal procedure my annoying lawyer brain activates.

    • I have to just turn off the lawyer part of my brain when watching any legal show. I mean, The Good Wife is amazing television, but both the law and the law firm are completely unrealistic, and talk about playing fast and loose with legal ethics and criminal procedure! (Although I haven’t seen the most recent season yet, and it sounds like some of the legal ethics stuff might be addressed).

      • I love Good Wife. I knew one of the writers of Drop Dead Diva. He seemed concerned about the same things – sometimes the legal accuracy is scrapped in favor of plot devices, etc.

  40. Beds- any good suggestions on where to get? Looking for stable frame for queen mattress, ideally coming with headboard soft to lean against. Needs to be minimal size/appearance (condo dweller, small room), light in color (pale wood/white etc.). I am having the internet thing where there are a million online but nothing that seems to fit the bill. Have checked Ikea, Dania, Macys, Wayfair, Amazon, Target.. willing to pay decent amount of right.

    • No idea if they’ll have what you are looking for, but additional places to check are Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, West Elm, Room and Board. That plus Ikea is where most of my stuff is from.

    • Seattleite :

      E.than A.llen and B.assett both have upholstered headboards. [trying to avoid moderation!]

      Also, google “designer furniture warehouse everett.” It’ll be a bit of a drive from downtown Seattle, but the Everett location is right off the freeway. They have stuff from many price points. I bought a dining room hutch and chairs there for less than 1/4 their price at a local upscale furniture store.

    • Try J.C. Penney for soft headboards and AllModern for minimalist frames.

  41. New poster :

    I have a Nordstrom question, hope it’s not too late in the weekend. I bought a pair of shoes last week at full price and when I got them home, saw them on Bluefly for much less. Exact same shoes. I have seen people mention here that Nordstrom does price matching, but would they do it for a discount e-tailer like Bluefly? The difference is about $120, so not insignificant. Thanks for any advice!

    • Seattleite :

      ?? Ask Nordstrom. The worst they can say is “no.” I promise, they’re not going to send stink bombs through the phone, ban you from the store, or try to get you fired just because you ask.

      “I just bought these shoes. Now I see I can buy them for $XXX on Bluefly. Can you match that price, or should I return them and buy them elsewhere?”

      And I truly do mean this kindly – if you are that hesitant to ask for what you want in a no-lose situation, please get some assertiveness training. Life is way too long to stifle your own voice like that.

      • ChristinaMD :

        WOW. Assuming that she needs assetiveness training simply b/c she was asking about returning a pair of shoes and whether Nordstroms recognized online vendors… is just… in the words of Carolyn Hax, “Wow.”

        • Joan Holloway :

          So glad you said something, ChristinaMD.

          • yep. Someone (not sure if it’s the same person) cut me way down on a post upthread and I was starting to think the tenor of the site was changing to be nastier. That would make me sad.

            Newbie, remember to ask a couple different people if the first says no, and let us know if Nordstrom does the adjust for Bluefly. Like you said, they might see the internet clearance-ness of it as an easy out.

          • Seattleite :

            JenK, I don’t know what post you’re referring to, but except for my very first post years ago, all my posts have been under this handle. If I do disagree with posters, I do it openly.

          • JenK, I also feel like there’s been a lot more vitriol lately. What’s up with that?

          • I totally agree. In fact, that’s one of the reasons why I was hesitant to post something more personal on the weekend. During the week, there’s a smaller, more supportive group, then on the weekends, things tend to get more negative – at least by a few people. Because I subscribe to comments, I see where one person can come along and add negativity to several threads. It’s sad.

        • Yeah, jeez Seattleite. People are testy this weekend.

      • Seattleite :

        I am very sorry. I wasn’t trying to cut the OP down, and I sincerely hope that she didn’t take it that way.

        She struck me as being extremely unsure of herself, and almost frightened to make a simple request. I was trying to encourage her to speak up, and did so very badly.

        • New poster :

          I accidentally hit “Cancel Reply” and this came out at the bottom. Which made me read down and see that people are getting awfully cranky during this long weekend…

          Thanks for clarifying, and for jumping in, thoughtful others. Just logging in and seeing this now, but please don’t worry that I would be hurt by a comment made by someone on a website who doesn’t know me. I will go into Nordstrom this week and ask. I work a lot of hours, like most people on this site, and was trying to avoid the extra trip to the mall if we already knew that this was out of the question, that’s all.

          • I’ve never shopped at Nordie’s so this may be incorrect, but since you work so much, maybe you could call their customer service number? Some retailers have different divisions for brick and mortar vs. online sales, so it may not work if you bought them in-store, but it may save you a little bit of time. Either way, good luck- hopefully they will say yes and you can use the savings to buy something else.

        • Seattleite, thanks for posting this.

          • New poster :

            I called. The main customer service line has nothing to do with the stores, but their general policy is no price adjustments for online-only retailers (but something like Bloomingdales online is acceptable, because they have brick and mortar stores). Then I called the customer service department of the store where I purchased them, and they said the same thing.

            I asked to speak with someone in salon shoes (to practice my assertiveness in case anyone was worried about it). They said they don’t do price adjustments at all, and that each store and each department has its own policies. I will try taking the shoes in in person and seeing my main shoe man Michael, maybe he will hook me up. I waited too long and they have now sold out of my size on Bluefly anyway, otherwise I would just buy the shoes there and return at Nordstrom without a second thought.

            Just an update in case anyone else was wondering. I had honestly never heard of the price matching thing with Nordstrom before reading it here, which is why I was a little skeptical in the first place. Thanks for all the responses.

  42. SoCal Gator :

    I have been told I should watch The Good Wife but start at the beginning. Where can I get season One? It’s not in Netflix streaming.

    • I heart Good Wife :

      DH and I started watching from the beginning about 2 months ago. We LOVE it. But it comes from Netflix only on DVD.

      If I could have any lawyer’s wardrobe, it would be Alicia Florrick’s. She has my coloring, so I spend part of each scene fantasizing how her suit would work into my wardrobe.

      • SoCal Gator :

        I just checked out Hulu Plus and it has The Good Wife streaming. And now using AirPlay you can stream from your I-device to the TV using Apple Tv, which I have. Thinking about subscribing.

    • check your local library! mine has many DVD series that you can’t get on netflix streaming.

  43. Seeking Dress :

    Saw a great dress at a wedding last night – sheath dress, short sleeves, pockets in the side seams of the skirt, it was orange/light blue/gray/black/white with an abstract pattern that included what looked like clubs and spades from a deck of cards. Exposed zipper down the back. Anyone seen this anywhere??? Thanks!

  44. Valentino Silk Scarf :

    I bought a gorgeous silk scarf at a consignment store yesterday. Heavy silk twill. I’m guessing 36 inch square (it’s at the dry cleaners now). Floral design: black center, red border, pink yellow & green flowers in a ring between the center and the border. Single word “Valentino” in one corner. I paid $60.61 with tax. I am very happy with my purchase because I know it is an item that will get a lot of use.

    Questions:

    1. I have been all over the internet and can’t find an image of this scarf. I’m wondering what season it was, how much it was new etc. Is there some kind of resource for that info?
    2. Ditto for Hermes scarves. There was a Hermes scarf in the same drawer. It was $695 and the silk was not anywhere near as nice as this one. (I personally didn’t care for the design either, but that is subjective.)

    • From my experiences consigning, there is some sort of database that a lot of the stores use to determine their pricing. I don’t know the name of it, but you may call around and ask- the consignment store you purchased from may tell you.

  45. I have been struggling with deciding what to do with my career for about 4 years now and I feel like enough is enough. I have spent countless hours doing my own research with books, talking to family and friends, etc. I think it might be time to involve a professional but not sure which one. Is this something a therapist could help me work through?

    • another anon :

      I highly suggest a career counselor. I don’t know what you’ve done on your own, but I had a Strong Interest test done (among others) and thought it was quite useful.

      • I know this sounds silly but how do you take the test? I found a few websites that administer the test online but they looks shady and the one that looks legit won’t let you order a copy unless you are a licensed career coach or psychologist. My alma mater’s career services department will only let you take it in person which isn’t possible for me. Can you buy this test at a book store?

  46. Ladies –

    Tonight’s Mad Men. Women in the workplace. Please discuss.

    • Honestly, I may not be able to watch the show again. Several times this season I have thought, “Boy, Matt Weiner really hates women.” I understand it was the culture of the time, but I hate watching women repeatedly put in humiliating positions, such as Betty in a fat suit.

      • It was definitely yucky, but I dont think it means Matt Weiner hates women.

        I didn’t watch the show initially, but I worked with this guy (about 10 years younger than me) who kept talking about how great is was, back when “things were the way they’re supposed to be” (i’m not joking, but maybe he partially was)

        So I watched the show and my immediate take-away was that the #1 theme of Mad Men is how much it sucked to be a woman back then.

        I really think that’s Matt Weiner’s overall message. There are people out there today who claim that gender equality has set women back, but do you see any happy women (at work or stay-at-home) on that show? No, all the happy go lucky types are men.

  47. Okay. I know it’s late in the game for the weekend. And I want to preface this by saying I have awesome in-laws. I mean, they raised my husband. My in-laws are loving, accepting, caring people who adore my child and have accepted me wholeheartedly into their lives.

    And they are here for the rest of the weekend, which is great, because as stated above, DH and I are on call tomorrow together, and it magically solves all our childcare problems. So please take this complaint with a grain of salt, but I need to get it off my chest.

    My father in law is going to eat us out of house and home. We got (huge) burritos for dinner. My mother in law and I ate a half (I do not have a small appetite). My husband at 3/4. My FIL ate a full burrito. And two pieces of bread. And a bowl of cereal. And an apple. And the last of our watermelon. And then dug in our freezer and ate the rest of our frozen yogurt and the last of my skinny cows. And some of our almonds. Oh and a bagel.

    Clearly, it bothers me, because I kept track. I always plan to have extra food around, but I always end up feeling resentful. Like, who eats that much? And how come I don’t get to eat leftovers later? Please please please hear me — I know many of you have real issues with your in-laws, and I fully acknowledge that this does not count as a real issue. But tomorrow I’m going to go to the grocery store, buy another loaf of bread gallon of milk jar of peanut butter and vat of vanilla ice-cream and tell him to go to town.
    Okay, calm now. Overall I’m lucky. But it always makes me crazy.

    • Anonymous :

      You’re being extremely petty. Seriously. Let it go. It’s strange and again, incredibly petty that you’re keeping track of everything your in-laws are eating. Not just your father in law, but also your mother in law, too. Honestly, I feel kind of bad for them.
      Sorry. But since you asked, I truly think it’ll help you, and your relationship with your in-laws, to know that in at least in person’s opinion, you really need to lay off.

      • Did you not see the preface? Back off. Let’s be supportive of each other here, even in our needs to vent over things we know we couldn’t say IRL.

        • Christ. Do not tell me to back off. How does it help her to validate everything she says – untruthfully? To make her more resentful of her in-laws? She’s being judgmental, and hopefully realizing this will compel HER to back off.

          • Validate, as in tell her they are true? Nothing could be more useless. Emotions are not factual statements. They are feelings. Everyone has a right to their feelings; it’s what we do with them, how we express them, that we might want to change. I don’t see anyone here saying “Go blast your in-laws with hateful invective”, and I don’t think that’s what she’s doing. She started off by C(her)A and making it very clear that she knows the tiny place this holds in the otherwise good relationship and that it’s a little thing that’s bugging her, but it’s bugging her. Venting in a completely separate forum can be a healthy way to release negative emotions without damaging the relationship. I don’t think I have mach more to say on this, other than let’s be supportive of each other.

          • Couldn’t disagree more, sorry. When I have friends being unreasonable in relationship IRL I tell them the truth then, too — and they don’t seem to mind being told if they’re unfair or unreasonable. I certainly appreciate it, when friends tell me as much. You don’t always know when you’re being a jerk, and being informed of it helps you change not only your behavior but the way you view something. Frankly, the poster here is being a jerk. Hopefully being informed of it will enable her to change her perspective and how she’s viewing her poor FIL. For you to tell me to “back off” from giving her that view is obnoxious, and seems to undermine your whole “Let’s just support each other” ethos.

          • Yiiiiikes. Hope you inform your friends they’re being judgmental, extremely/incredibly petty, unreasonable, otherwise flawed human beings, etc. etc. more gently than you do here. Sometimes it is good to have a close friend ask you, “Fo real?” but can’t say I’d be friends too long with someone who was determined to be absolutely no-holds barred blunt with me about every negative judgment she had about my attitudes/conduct/behavior. I appreciate that sometimes my friends just let me be ridiculous.

      • Couple of things:

        1) I actually didn’t “ask” anything. I was venting. And that was explicit.

        2) I think it’s pretty clear that I know I’m being petty.

        3) I appreciate you opinions. Clearly, I’m posting on a forum, so I’m not anticipating either no response or a chorus of support. But I would ask you if you think harsh words are the best way to get people to change behavior you disagree with or dislike.

      • I have to agree with Anonymous, actually, although I know her tone was harsh. Your inlaws are providing free childcare, which is invaluable. FIL eats a lot, yes, but they are providing a service back in return. And you and your husband make very good money, I assume. I can see how it would be frustrating when your favorite snacks are getting eaten, but at the end of the day – this is not a big deal (as you point out yourself).

        I have to say that I cringed when I read your note. I know that you’re venting, but in my culture, we say that the “guest is god” and we provide tons of food to our guests and we don’t think anything of it. Keeping track of how much people eat — it really makes me feel sad that you’re doing that!

        • Alanna of Trebond :

          You sound like you are an Indian? Guest is god, check. Ply with food, double check. Grandmother forces them to eat even if they are not hungry?

          • Nope, eastern european. I suspect that the ply with food mentality crosses most immigrant cultures.

        • Why do you care if she’s Indian or not?

      • For –‘s sake, people, she’s got house guests! How is she supposed to keep the fridge stocked if she isn’t keeping track of what’s being eaten? Besides, can’t any of you tell me what you and the people you were with ate at your last meal today?

        Anyway, thanks for the heads up on the infeasibility of using this site as a place to post a funny rant about something odd that’s bugging me, especially if it’s something we all know not to address with the person involved.

    • Who cares? :

      I think the call is getting to you or something! So he eats a lot, who cares?

    • I get how other people’s habits, when they are suddenly living with us, can be incredibly annoying.

    • layered bob :

      oooh I feel resentful like this when my brothers come to stay with me… particularly since they can go through in one sitting boxes of things that I eat slowly and view as “treats” (chocolate bars, ice cream sandwiches, etc.) . They eat SO MUCH. And I grew up with them, in the same house, eating the same food, so you’d think I’d know how to keep food on hand for them. And every time they come I’m taken by surprise.

      Which, as you say, does not mean that I don’t love them and want them here. I would love if they would visit even more often. And I’m glad they feel comfortable enough to go through my cupboards. So I try to remind myself that I am grateful that they are eating me out of house and home, because I could not have them at all, and that would be way worse.

      So you already know that it’s petty, but you’re not alone – sometimes our families just bring out all our angst and pettiness and weirdness, and that’s just the way it is. I try to remember how grateful I am that I am having *this* problem and not some worse problem, and that puts things in perspective.

      … and then when they leave I totally appreciate again how long a half-gallon of milk lasts without them :-)

      • I like your reply. But I don’t think she knows she’s being petty, or how weird it is that she’s analyzing every single thing her family is eating.

        • She doesn’t know? Then why did she say, “I fully acknowledge that this does not count as a real issue”?

          • It IS sort of weird that she’s tracking everything her free babysitters are eating.

    • Don’t feel bad. All of us have relatives or inlaws whose habits get on our nerves, especially when it impacts us (no leftovers). My brother in law does not eat huge meals when we go out, but he comes in two or three hours later and eats another meal, seriously. MY LEFTOVERS!! How dare he! Plus he is getting quite a paunch. I would say beer belly, but he does not drink much. So let yourself be peeved at him, laugh it off, and move on. Of course, I would think as a doctor the unhealthy aspects of this also play into your reactions. Too bad we cannot control other people’s bad habits :)

    • Sounds like a healthy growing boy! Seriously, where does he put it all?

      Glad you have a place to vent and hope you feel better now. Just don’t take him along when you’re on call. He’d steal the kids’ bacon!

      BTW, my peeve about my FiL (when I had one, before the divorce) was that he would go on long walks, and sometimes decide to help me out by swinging by the grocery store. There often were items I needed, but he never ever bought them. He’d get things he thought Americans like me like, such as an oversize bag of potato chips.

    • This made me laugh – reminds me of my former housesitter. She was a broke college student with roommates and she loved staying at my house and took great care of my cats, so I paid her well and always left food for her. I would try to stop her from eating certain expensive things in my fridge (like dried porcinis and truffles) to no avail. I swear, I would come home from a trip and the fridge would look like I had emptied it out to clean it! I came to wonder if she was taking food home with her – or having dinner parties at my house with her friends.

      Good to vent here – it’s frustrating when you’re busy and you try to plan food and somebody mows through it. Try to keep your sense of humor about it!

    • EC MD, Costco is probably very grateful when your FIL comes to town.

    • ECMD, when you run out of food, just smile sweetly at him and say…”Oh no! We’re out. Could you run to the store and get more???”

      But oof. That’s a lot of food!

      • I think when someone is giving you free babysitting to help you out of a jam, you provide the food. I get other people in your space would be annoying but I mean, he’s hungry right? he’s not eating all that and then throwing it up or anything. So I would turn a blind eye for this and focus on all the good things. (And I say this with sympathy, I don’t have many overnight houseguests cuz I like my own space too) But I agree with the people who are urging you to stop keeping track of the food, I think that’s making your annoyance seem even bigger.

        • Yeah I agree with this

        • I’m not saying she shouldn’t give him money to PAY for the food! He just may get more careful about how much food he eats if he has to go buy some of it. :-P

          Haha. Seriously though, this is one of those things you just have to smile and deal with with family. It pales in comparison to family who is willing to watch a toddler for you though. :-)

    • I get it – it’s not about the food but about the upset daily routines and strange people in your house.
      No matter how wanted, wonderful and helpful the guests are, in a normal middle-class household (no live-in maids or visitor cottages) there would still be a degree of… imposition? discomfort?..

      That said, the real fridge pillaging is done by teenage boys and THEIR guests. You have a few years to prepare.

    • Working Girl :

      My FIL does the same thing and it drives me nuts. Frankly I never thought of myself as petty for being annoyed, so you are one step more enlightened than I am. There is nothing wrong with being a little off put. Nor do I think you are weirdly “tracking” anything as people suggest. When you are running a household with kids and doing groceries all the time, you notice what is missing because you are the one making sure there is food for your family there and paying attention to this kind of stuff. You don’t have o be “analyzing” or intentionally tracking anything to notice.

      • Yes. I keep track of what visitors eat so I know what to buy/make next time they’re here. My mom will always say she wants to go out to eat. Took me a few years to figure out that she didn’t mean to insult me or find my food inedible. She just doesn’t get how nice it is to slow down and mindfully make a meal that will be enjoyed by other adults. Even now that I’ve figured that out, she still won’t tell me her preferences–I have to watch for them.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Anyone else think that there is one person posting as a bunch of the anons to make it look like her position has more support? I smell advanced trolling.

      EC MD – that was a funny vent. My husband used to get annoyed when my brother would visit and eat and drink all his food. Now we eat/drink mostly healthy food so my brother isn’t interested in it LOL.

      • Definitely over the top. EC is a regular poster that gives good advice and I thought the post was funny. You obviously make your FIL feel very welcome and I am sure you’d never make an issue of it. I’d like to be a guest at her house – lots of food there (having been a guest many times where there’s been no food whatsoever).

      • Alanna of Trebond :

        Yes, I think that’s one of the issues with how commenters “sign in” on this site–there’s not really an accountability attached to the name.

      • I don’t think so – there are a variety of opinions on this site.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        I didn’t mean EC MD was a troll!!! The anons responding!!

      • I’m not a troll, I’m a regular poster and I didn’t write the original response (from Anon). I also think that EC MD’s response below was very gracious and thoughtful.

      • Haters gonna hate!

      • Anonymous :

        This is the original, “harsh” Anonymous. And, I am different from “Anon” and “Yup.” You honestly think no more than one person is capable of thinking that the OP is being petty, and that her cataloguing of her what her guests are eating is weird? How insulting.

    • I want to thank everyone for the variety of replies. I honestly didn’t think I would be starting such an issue, and I think that a lot of good points were made. I hope it was clear that I did know that it is petty of me.

      The thing that make it challenging is that my in-laws don’t drive while they are here, and we don’t live walking distance to a market, so the only reason I’m really keeping track is that it’s my responsibility to provide the food, so as he’s eating, I’m adding to my grocery list. But it’s not the end of the world, it’s just another chore to juggle, and I am very very grateful for their presence, and our relationship.

      One of my favorite aspects of Judiasm is the idea of “acts of loving kindness” and reading this thread reminded me of how great I have it with my family, and how nonjudgmental and loving they are, and that has allowed me to replenish my cupboards from a place of love rather than panic that food was disappearing faster than I could restock it.

      Hope everyone’s work week is productive and not too stressful.

    • So funny – I have sort of the opposite problem. My MIL will not touch any food I prepare – like it’s poison. I pride myself on my cooking, and put a lot of effort into it, but she won’t budge. She was here last week for several days, and all of the food I had purchased, hoping we would eat in once or twice, just rotted in the fridge. In the past, she has sat at the dinner table and flatly refused to eat the dinner I prepared. It makes me crazy too, but I am trying to learn to let it go.

  48. Government Work? :

    The leave and health benefits are okay. Nothing you wouldn’t find at a private employer with a good benefit package. Security, job not physical, tends to be a little better. This seems to vary by agency, but for those that work for government agencies, have you found that you wear your series and grade regardless of your actual job?

    It just seems odd that you can be assigned job duties and held accountable; but if the person you need information from is a higher grade, they don’t have to listen.

    Also, duty assignments seem odd. You can be assigned more responsibility but receive “nothing” except another duty to add to your resume. At least in private industry, you can negotiate a small bump in $ or title change to offset some of this. It seems in government, you are what you are until a slot at a higher grade is open. Even then, you will get the $ but may only continue to do the work you did before.

    I guess I’m just rambling as friends that don’t work for the govt don’t understand and it’s a topic I wouldn’t want to share with coworkers. Anyone experienced this? How did you deal with it or did it male you go back to the private sector?

    • Anon for this :

      There are advantages and disadvantages of any workplace, and the government has its own special quirks. I would argue that job security is much better than in the private sector, but that’s a minor quibble. The issue of pay for performance is a real one, but hard to measure accurately, I suspect, and it depends greatly on where in the private sector you think you’d go, and the state of the economy in that industry. I don’t know of anyone in govt who “wears series/grade,” and at least in my agency I don’t know the ranks of most of the people I work with other than my direct reports and my supervisor. (I know those only because the information is on the evaluations I write for them and my supervisor writes for me.)

      If I have a problem with a higher ranking person not providing information, I will address the person as professionally as possible, but then raise the matter with my boss or the other person’s boss. I don’t see this as being materially different than when I worked in the private sector and a higher ranking person didn’t provide the info/turnaround/response in a timely basis. Higher ranking people in my private sector job ‘didn’t have to listen’ any more than in government and the way to work it out is no different. Public or private doesn’t matter when your work is stymied by someone who doesn’t have to take orders from you, and the only thing you can do is make it clear (professionally!) to your supervisor that you cannot complete X until you have Y and Y is currently with JaneBob.

      Additional duties do come without any additional pay, but I found the same was true in my private sector position as well. Yes, I could ask for more money, but the firm didn’t have to give me the bump or raise or bonus, and job titles where I worked were set and nonnegotiable. Friends in other industries tell me that it was completely unheard of to ask for a change in compensation “just because” you were assigned other duties; especially if the other duties came along because of layoffs and work just needed to be redistributed. At one point when my firm wasn’t doing as well as before, it changed our benefits package and reduced bonuses significantly; for a few years we were basically getting less for the same amount of work. Promotion tracks in the private sector can also be dead ends (no real moves until you show you are qualified and the best candidate for the job, and no guarantees that you will get it….same as in govt).

      I guess my bottom line is that everything you wrote here is true and can be incredibly frustrating, but I found that several of the issues you raise are not any better in the private sector, but the private sector can make decisions (good, bad, and ugly) faster than the government; that speed might reduce frustrations but it’s balanced by other factors, such as employees have less recourse. The grass isn’t necessarily greener, but it may be a different type of grass.

      • Government Work? :

        When I worked in the private sector it seemed like there was less combativeness and more of a common goal. For example, I wasn’t in the same direct reporting structure as the controllers but I worked in the VPs direct organization. There was never an outright salary/rank discussion when something came up. It was so much easier to get information, work together for a solution, and if I said something couldn’t be done bc of internal policy, us code, contracts, etc there wasn’t too much of a fit. Promotions were more straightforward. If there was someone they wanted, that person got it and an announcement was made congratulating them. Otherwise, the position was posted and mostly fair game.

        With the government, it seems like everyone feels like someone is out to get them and you have no business looking at “their area”, your not their boss so you can’t “tell” them what to do, etc. We have a monthly report the director sends to HQ. I can’t make any of the offices turn-in information for the brief. (sometimes the Director can’t get a straight answer out of them.) Government promotions? I’ve seen too many panels and the selection sheets to buy it.

        I never saw anything like this at Treasury so I know not all positions are like this and agencies are different. I get it’s the management style that is frustrating me. Sommany positions are only open to current agency employees, I feel like it would be difficult to switch and going back to the private sector may be my only option if I want a different environment.

        • Where does your agency rank on the “Best Places To Work” in the government list? My agency is at the top, and I see none of these problems. I don’t think you can just pin this on being a government job — it’s just bad management. You might want to target your future job search at agencies and sub-agencies that rank high on that survey.

          • Government Work? :

            Not in the top 100; actually, not in the top 50%. Do you know where the numbers come from? That don’t exactly match the annual OPM scores we get but I would guess they would be related?

            There aren’t many agencies or sub-agencies in my area that are ranked highly. Time to start saving for a relocation? I am a somewhat higher grade which has made switching agencies difficult. I’ve interviewed for positions bit they always chose someone that was an in-house promotions. (some of those interviews were closet interrogations where it seemed like more of a way to exclude the lateral so X can be promoted; the person that got it shouldn’t have been in the interview, should they?)

  49. New poster :

    Thanks for clarifying, and for jumping in, thoughtful others. Just logging in and seeing this now, but please don’t worry that I would be hurt by a comment made by someone on a website who doesn’t know me. I will go into Nordstrom this week and ask. I work a lot of hours, like most people on this site, and was trying to avoid the extra trip to the mall if we already knew that this was out of the question, that’s all.

    • SoCal Gator :

      Maybe you could call Nordstroms first before making the trip to the store. If they sound encouraging, that would make it worth your while. My customer service experiences with Nordstroms have all been Exceeds Expectations. Good luck!