Coffee Break – Zuma Beach Kelsey Shoulder Bag

kate spade new york zuma beach kelsey shoulder Bag Hooray for crinkled patent leather tote bags in “deep African violet.” And animal print lining! I wish this bag came with a leetle bit more organization inside it (a pocket for my cell phone, perhaps) but sometimes you just want a big space to throw stuff. Gorgeous. This baby is on sale, too — was $348, now marked to $233 at CUSP (available in both purple and “chino”). Kate Spade New York Zuma Beach Kelsey Shoulder Bag

(L-3)

Comments

  1. karenpadi :

    Oh, purple purses! My favorite purse ever was purple.

    Depp breathe. So here goes: I turned 32 this year and my biological clock is screaming. When I was 31, it was kind of a whisper in the background “tick tock tick tock” that was easily drowned out by my “no kids” 5-year plan. Now the ticking is a dull roar, and, when I see babies, my eyes water and I feel like I’m going to cry. The “no kids” 5 year plan is a cold comfort.

    I’ve been in a number of marriage-on-the-table relationships with wonderful men but there were major issues in those relationships and I don’t regret moving on. I’ve been online dating for over a year now and I’m just so discouraged. I’m seeing a guy I like now but it’s just too soon to know where the relationship will go.

    For me, a husband is an essential part of any family I might have. (Single mothers are much better people than I could ever aspire to be.) I am very close to my own dad and I want that for my kids.

    I choose my career because it was “family friendly” but, well, I feel like this characterization was directed at the men in the room at the time. I am starting to resent my education and career choice. I look around my office and the only married women in my position started their careers after they had a husband and at least one child. Every woman who “waited” is single and in her late 30s and 40s.

    Any other women go through (or have gone through) something like this? Any words of advice or encouragement? My mom has already told me numerous times that I’m still young and that I have a lot of time. But that doesn’t really help.

    • First off, I’m sorry. It sucks to want something so badly and not be in a position to do something about it on your own. But in some ways you are! First, you should go visit your GYN and talk to them about your concerns and maybe see if there is a fertility specialist you could talk to. Who knows, you could be a fertile beast. My SIL had her first kid at 35 completely fine and a friend who’s 26 had to do IVF. Bodies are individual and funky. Better of knowing the medical odds and then addressing them whether it’s freezing your eggs or something more/less drastic. Being able to make informed decisions always makes me feel better. Also think long and hard about if having a biological child is a deal breaker for you or if you’d be open to adoption while you’re exploring those options. Not to say you can’t do both, but its good to know especially while you’re trying to find a partner.

      Finally, trust in your decision that the right partner is better than the right now partner (not picking on current person). Take this opportunity to do things in your career and personal life that you couldn’t do while you have a young family and start crossing things off the list. You will be alright no matter what. We all try to plan out our lives and unfortunately life has a funny way of mocking our timelines.

      • karenpadi :

        Thanks. This means a lot. I will have to sit down and figure out a few more things I want to do as a single person.

    • I am in a similar boat except the biological clock isn’t screaming quite as loudly. But same age, similar career situation, and same mom-isms about how I have a lot of time, it only takes one, etc. I get so frustrated because it’s the one thing I can’t totally control about my life, but it’s also the one thing that could change everything. How can I plan for the future without knowing if there will be a husband and children? It affects everything I do — the way I plan my career, whether or not to buy a place, where to settle down… ugh. When I think about it too much, I want to scream.

      I also do not want kids without a husband (at least, I say that now… who knows how I’ll feel in 10 years if things don’t change).

      I’ve seen friends meet the right guy and be engaged in nine months (I think in your 30s, you know a little sooner if it’s right — I would have balked at something like that in my 20s), so I do think there’s hope if you both want the same things, but again, it’s not totally within your control.

      It sounds like you’re already in a good place if you’re seeing someone you like — that’s half the battle! Remember that there are a lot of ways to create a family if you meet the right guy later in life and can’t get pregnant right away. There are so many “what ifs” that it can be hard to really focus on what’s right in front of you sometimes (I mean the general “you,” not you personally — this applies to me and most women our age I know, too!).

      But I agree that it does feel like the clock is ticking more and more loudly. Most of my friends are not parents, but probably 75% are married, and I know it’s going to start, and soon. It was hard for me when most of them paired off and got married, but I got over it because life didn’t change that much. Our lifestyles were still similar. But as they start having kids, it really feels like… like just a big pang of sadness in my heart sometimes. I see them creating beautiful families and I wonder if I’ll ever have that chance.

      Anyway, I guess that wasn’t really much advice, but at least some commiseration. You are not alone.

    • Sigh. nothing to add other than me too.

    • springtime :

      No experience with this as I’m a bit younger but that’s what I fear will happen to me too. Whenever I’m in a situation that is very important to my life but something I cannot control, I try to find proactive ways to deal with it- i.e. job uncertainty? Look for new jobs, start making contacts, anything to get the ball rolling just in case. You are obviously putting yourself out there with online dating so maybe the fertility talk with the doctor will help. Maybe you could investigate freezing your eggs? I’m not sure, but something to give you some more control.

      Isn’t it frustrating that some guys simply don’t care about growing up sometimes? (I read your post on the other thread). Lucky for them that’s an option. It’s not for women.

      • karenpadi :

        Thanks! It is the lack of control that terrifies me. I am not determined to have bio kids. It just seems that, if I can, it’s the cheapest, most efficient way to “acquire” a child (that’s my cold, analytical side).

        Guys. Ugh. I am so jealous that their bio clock doesn’t tick until their late 30s (for most of them).

    • AnonFourThis :

      My (rather long) reply went awol – it’s further down the page.

    • I clearly remember reading in my little 10th year high school reunion booklet (everyone contributed a little blurb on what they were doing), one woman commenting on how she was watching all her girlfriends get married while remaining happily single. By the 20th reunion, she had married and had just had her third child. So, 28 to 38 is not all that much different than 32 to 42, fertility-wise. A lot may happen for you in the next few years.

      I also remember another friend who hadn’t dated for ages, decided to do a dating service, and within just a couple years she was also holding her first baby. I think this took place for her between the ages of 38 and 41.

      Hang in there.

      • Well, that gives me hope! I was about to chime in with a “me too”, but seeing your post is helpful. Similar to your second friend, I didn’t date for ages, signed up to online dating, and have now just moved in with the BF I met on eHarmony. I’m 37. So maybe there is hope for me yet.

    • I’m not sure if this is helpful, but one of my friends went through this. She was 39 or 40 and desperately wanted a family. Not just kids but a family, with a husband. She met some great guys and got involved with first one guy and then another who were older and had kids already (but grown kids, not young). Neither of them wanted kids and she got attached to them before finally accepting that fact and breakups were really hard. After Katrina, she and I walked in the park every afternoon and I remember her telling me that rather than telling guys later that she wanted a family, she felt like it was important to say that almost immediately, in order to weed out any guys who weren’t interested right away. I know I had my doubts about this plan, but she decided she would go ahead with it. A few months later, I took her to a party at a colleague’s house. They fixed her up with a friend. He was also older but completely into the idea of kids, but was concerned that he might have fertility issues. Long story short, they are now married and have a beautiful, precocious 4 year old daughter. I think she had her daughter at 41. Surprisingly, although her husband would have another, she loves just having one child. So there’s still hope!

    • I’m right there with you. Well, a year old. But I really do believe you have time. My thing is that even if I have time (which would be a blessing), I really want kids soon.

      I’ve met a wonderful guy and am about five months into a truly awesome relationship–but now I fear that two years from now, it’ll fall apart and I’ll be back at the drawing board. So much pressure!

      I really enjoyed reading In Her Own Sweet Time by Rachel Lehmann-Haupt. Great book about exploring options and the emotional turmoil that it can all bring. Also a very quick read!

    • Woods-comma-elle :

      OMG what happened to my comment? Usually I get the posting too soon and just keep refreshing, but now it just hasn’t turned up. Moderation maybe (although nothing came up) so apologies if there are two posts substantially the same!

      Anyway, I can’t now remember all the supposedly elegant things I said, but basically I feel for you, minus the biological clock. I don’t want to have kids, but I’d still like a husband someday. I’m quite happy with my single life right now, but almost feel like I missed the boat (which is ridiculous) since I haven’t dated anyone in like three years, apart from like one date here or there and random hookups, and hardly ever meet anyone I want to date who also wants to date me. The only thing that has changed in the meantime is that I have gotten older.

      Somehow I almost feel guilty about wanting to get married some day, or admitting it. It’s like independent career women are not supposed to want this. A friend once was very surprised when I said I want to get married one day as she assumed I wouldn’t since I don’t want kids (and apparently wanting kids is the ONLY legitimate reason to get married).

      Anyway, I sympathise and it sucks life isn’t a witty romantic comedy. But like my mum always says, better alone than with the wrong buddy!

    • This may be completely not applicable, but were there any common threads among the relationships that didn’t work out? I was in your position (at a slightly younger age — 30) and decided to do some deep soul-searching, including with a therapist, to see if there was anything I was doing that was preventing me from having the kind of long-term relationship I wanted. I felt a LOT like anon32 and it felt better to just feel like I was able to do something to help the process along (everyone saying “you never know — you could meet him tomorrow!” was completely unhelpful and frustrating). For me, it worked. I met my husband later that year. Not saying it’s for everyone, but sometimes it can be helpful to dig out any cobwebs that are getting in the way of a good relationship.

      • karenpadi :

        Thanks! I have considered therapy–especially to address the resentment I’m starting to feel about my career. I have the career I’ve wanted, I work at a great firm, and I’m doing the kind of work I want to do. I can’t imagine doing anything else.

    • Right there with you. I love the life I have and intellectually I know a lot of the things I love would have to change if I had a husband or children, but some days it’s just so hard to be a shoulder to cry on for my friends who are unsuccessfully TTC or to help friends navigate the stresses of wedding planning or just to see babies. I know what my friends are going through is incredibly frustrating and emotionally turbulent, but sometimes I just want to scream, I WISH I had your problems – a loving and supportive fiance/husband, a solid relationship, a home you own, financial security, and trying to start a family. And then I feel like a selfish jerk for thinking that. But some days I want those things so badly my chest feels like it’s going to explode. I’m so in charge of everything else in my life, but in this one thing I just feel incredibly helpless and pathetic. And now I’m tearing up just thinking about it.

      A few things have somewhat helped – I’ve gotten involved in a lot of activities that I really enjoy and I’ve tried to branch out into trying new things that I didn’t think I’d like that much. I try to do the things that I wouldn’t be able to do if I had family obligations. Meetups have also been good, when I have time for them. Online dating is a good step too; I also met a guy on there not long ago but it’s too early to tell. I’ve struggled to find a balance between giving a good guy a chance to learn to be a great SO vs. wasting my time with a nice guy who’s just not ready for a relationship. Idk that any of this is very helpful, but know that you’re definitely not alone. Hugs.

    • karenpadi :

      Thanks everyone. I feel much better. I’m glad to know that I’m not alone. I will keep you in my thoughts and I really hope you find someone too! And have as many babies as you want!

      And check out the Darwin note–that made me laugh.

    • Sivercurls :

      Second all the encouragement to be kind to yourself, try to control what you can, and to take advantage of your situation re travel, education, free time, etc. As corny as it may sound the Serenity Prayer is exactly about this: having “the courage to change what can be changed, the serenity to accept what cannot be changed, and the wisdom to know the difference.” So is Zen Buddhism’s idea of radical acceptance: You don’t have to LIKE a given situation, but if you accept it you’ll free yourself up from the gerbil wheel of wishing, wishing, wishing that things could be different.

      Also second L’s comment “Finally, trust in your decision that the right partner is better than the right now partner (not picking on current person).” The same applies to having kids–children at the right time are much better than children right now. When TTC became frustrating and upsetting, I consoled myself that at least I hadn’t brought any children into the world before being ready to nurture them…which in my case wasn’t until almost age 40.

      Despite all this brave talk about Acceptance, sending Internet hugs, tissues, and chocolate. I hope things work out the way you want them to and sooner rather than later, but please remember that you are a terrific person and an asset to society whether you are married or single, with or without children, being a devoted aunt or mentor or embracing an adults-only life.

    • Karen, you have actually helped me tremendously with interview advice at a time when I really needed it, so I hope I can help back. Everything that is worth having in this life is hard work. Yes, that includes marriage, conception, pregnancy, labor, nursing, raising them, parenting, relationship, work life balance, and financial management. So get ready for some hard work! Treat this phase like you are looking for a job! And you need the money yesterday! Leave no stone unturned. Treat every date like an interview for a prospective life partner and parenting partner. Learn as much as you can as fast as you can. Have a top five list and if he doesn’teet that list move on. You should be able to tell after a few dates. This is a numbers game just like a job interview. Take it as seriously as you would a job interview. Work hard at it and you will reach your goals.

      • Agree with the above. I would say be quite straight forward about what you want – if you want to get married and have kids then that’s what you want. Tell people. Tell the guys you date as soon as you think it’s appropriate. Better to find out asap if they want the same or not. If they don’t, then they are free to move on as are you. I think it’s really powerful to say what you want “My dream is meeting a nice guy and being married and pregnant within two years.” That statement then starts to shape your actions. And I had first baby when I was in my very late thirties. Don’t just wait for it to happen magically is what I am saying basically.

        • MaggieLizer :

          I agree that it’s best to be up front about your goals and expectations. It’s totally appropriate to tell someone in the first handful of dates (but not the first date) that you’re looking for something serious, meaning a husband and father, and you want to have kids while you’re young enough to enjoy and provide for them. You want to make sure he can see children in the near future and not when he’s, like, 50.

          I would be cautious about putting a time frame out there too early in the relationship, though. Even though I want a family sooner rather than later, I think I’d be pretty intimidated if a guy I’d only been dating a few weeks or months told me he wanted a baby in two years. I think most single men have a different perspective on children than women, too. Anecdotally, a lot of my guy friends weren’t on board with putting babies on a timeline until they were in love with their SOs, and now those guys are the ones (lovingly) pressuring their wives to have babies RIGHT NOW.

          • springtime :

            I agree with MaggieLizer.

          • Hi, this is anon from 9.30 pm above. I wasn’t clear, the in quotes bit about My dream is…was an internal statement clarifying a goal for yourself, not something I would suggest saying to the guy you were dating. I would check out his interest in marriage and kids more subtly than that!

      • LadyEnginerd :

        I did this at 25. Or, rather, I was prepared to do so (took online dating seriously in the hopes of finding someone serious and met my fiancé within a week of putting up my profile. It only takes one) Funny thing was that as soon as I put myself firmly on the market, I started meeting people offline too – even on my train commute to work! My attitude change must have changed the way I came off, and it was empowering to say to myself that marriage and a family are life goals worth pursuing with the same vigor as my professional goals.

        I also was in therapy for a year or so before this happened, so talking to a professional might help you feel unstuck and open to possibilities.

    • I feel exactly like this. I am 29 and the clock started ticking when I was 25. I want to have multiple kids (3-4 I think) and don’t want to be any older than 36ish when I have the last one… considering that I’m not even in a relationship now and haven’t had anything beyond a third date for four years, this isn’t looking promising. I’ve been doing online dating for 3 years and have only met about 3 people I wanted to see a second time, and none that I wanted to see a third time. (I’ve also only ever gotten one response to a message I sent someone so I think I’m Doing It Wrong.) In my case I don’t resent my career – that’s not the problem – I just don’t see how to find anyone. All the men who are interested in marriage/kids are already married by now.

    • 1. You ARE still young.
      2. The right man will come along. And if he doesn’t, you will still have options.
      3. Do stuff NOW that you cannot do easily post kids or when they are too young

      E.g. My list would read….Trip to Antarctica, African safari, etc.

  2. I needed help & you were there for me :

    (TJ)

    A few months ago I posted, asking for hive help in figuring out how to get help for my depression. You all responded in your usual amazing way, making me feel supported as I started what seemed like a very scary process. (It was scary, actually, but in the end totally worthwhile.)

    This week I had my last appointment with my therapist — I’ve graduated. I am still on meds; I’ll probably wait another few months to starting weaning off them.

    Thank you all, especially cbackson, AnonJ, expertise, Accountress, SF Bay Associate, and most of all, Kat, for bringing this group together.

    • Brooklyn, Esq. :

      This is really heart-warming. Thanks for posting a follow-up. :)
      Best wishes as you move forward!

    • Oh, I am so glad to hear this. This is a wonderful community in so many ways – I know the support that I’ve gotten here has made a huge difference to me at difficult times. Someone once told me that it’s the first step that costs, but the last step that counts – kudos to you for taking that frightening first step and staying with it to the end.

    • Good for you! May I suggest scheduling a “just in case” appointment with your therapist now for 6 months out? If you’re still feeling good you can cancel it, but if not you already have the appointment, no need to wait. I’ve found that when I need to go back to my therapist because of depression I’m usually so down that I have a hard time making myself do anything, including making the calls to make that appointment.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Congratulations!!! I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear that you are feeling better, and egotistically because my being “out” about therapy and meds may have encouraged someone else to get help too. And I agree with AmyRenee – schedule check-in appointments 3 and 6 months out. If you don’t need them, you can cancel them, but it’s great to have an appointment at a convenient time on the books just in case you want to stop by for one-session refresher.

      • I needed help & you were there for me :

        Good idea about the check-in appointments — thanks, I didn’t think of that. My therapist did give me a personalized checklist of questions to review monthly to see if I’m sliding back into depression, and I’ve got reminders set up on my calendar to do that. The idea is that I’ll know to get help when I’m at the beginning of a depression, instead of waiting until it’s completely doom-gloom-all-bad like this time.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Having done so myself once, it is not as hard as one might hope to slide back into depression. I think that if I had kept ‘maintenance’ check-in appointments every couple months, I would have avoided that. I’ve come to realize that I’m predisposed to depression, which sucks but oh well, and decided that even if I am feeling good, quarterly check-ins are mandatory for the foreseeable future (years) to maintain my mental well-being.

  3. Hey everybody, totally swamped this week with start of school, but I wanted to give a shout out to the whole Paul Ryan marathon conversation from the other day. I actually used it in a class this morning. We talked about how it’s important to discern the facts but how you can usually only guess at motive. We also talked about becoming educated about issues and knowing the facts on both sides before making an educated decision about how you come down on the issue. It was an interesting conversation with college freshmen.

    And I love love purple and this purse is beautiful (although large!). I ordered purple Michael Kors mary janes and should get them this week. Can’t wait!

  4. Silly question: I am a candyoholic. If someone has a jar of candy on her desk, I want a piece every.single.hour. So here’s my question: How often can you stop by and get a piece without it being awkward? Once a day? Or is that still too much?

    • I think you can stop by as often as you have a genuine reason to be passing that person’s desk (i.e. not just to get candy, and this assumes that you can grab a piece of candy without disrupting the person who has the jar of candy). Deliberate trips just to get candy should be limited to a couple times a week.

    • emcsquared :

      I keep a jar of candy on my desk for the specific purpose of encouraging people to stop into my office (yeah, I’m allergic to corn, so … can’t even eat the corn-syrup laden candy on my own desk). I’m an introvert, so the candy jar gives me a chance to have a 3-5 minute chat with folks without having to wander the halls and find them myself (the horror!).

      So I would say – once a day is not too much and may even be the desired result. If you are regularly emptying the candy bowl, consider leaving $1 now and then.

      My only annoyance is that the candy bowl seems to be wiped out many Monday mornings from people who worked over the weekend.

      • Agree that if you’re regularly emptying it (or contributing to it being empty), leave a few bucks or buy a new bag of candy.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      Luckily at my office, we keep the candy bowl next to the coffee. So I can mask my candy addiction with my coffee addiction and no one’s the wiser!

      • I agree that if you come in often, simply buying a bag of candy for it every now and then would solve any “jeez that woman eats all my candy” thoughts. :)

    • I am all or nothing. I realize this is not necessarily healthy eating behavior, but sugar sets off The Crazy in me. The more I eat it, the more I want it. It’s like an opiate.

      I don’t eat it anymore, added sugar/sweeteners anyway, and (most of the time) I don’t want it anymore.

      //Kanye shrug//

      • Brooklyn, Esq. :

        Considering doing this myself…any tips? How long did it take for you to stop wanting it?

        • I also went off grains and most dairy at the same time–food allergies, doctor’s orders–and I’m not going to lie. The first two weeks were hard. But since then (almost a year ago), it’s been pretty good (aside from the inconvenience of it all).

      • phillygirlruns :

        i am with you. moderation and i do not get along. i am an all-or-nothing person and i rarely, RARELY miss the “nothing” stuff.

    • By the way, one of the secretaries who sits outside my office always has a big bowl of candy on her desk.

      There are lawyers who have worn a path in the carpet because they visit at least once an hour.

      You do you. AIN’T NO SHAME.

    • lawsuited :

      I have a candy bowl on my desk. Some people stop by once a day, some people stop by a few times a day, one person very seldom stops by but when she does she takes 6 pieces of candy. I don’t mind how often people take candy, I put it there so my co-workers would come see me occasionally! (And I don’t judge either, because I eat a fair bit of it myself!)

    • You could do what one of our interns did once: just plop yourself in your coworker’s chair, put her candy dish in your lap and start munching, and say, “I don’t really even like this candy, but I like eating yours.” I <3 interns.

    • Are you wanting to stop? Or wanting to avoid looking like a piggy/weirdo by raiding someone’s candy bowl?

      If you want to stop, chew gum. It solved the problem for me IMMEDIATELY.

      If you are worried about eating a random coworker’s entire supply of candy, I’d occasionally bring him/her a bag of candy since you’re eating it all the time.

      If it’s a good friend in addition to a coworker (and/or someone with whom you work closely and know well), if you are in his/her cube all the time, I’d say any time you are there it is fine. Just offer to fill it every once in a whiel if you feel guilty!

      • Perhaps this goes without saying for you ladies (though it sure doesn’t in my office) – if you are going to chew gum in a cube/open environment, CHEW SILENTLY WITH YOUR MOUTH CLOSED. No bubbles, no cracking, no popping, no sticky saliva noises.

    • I go by once or twice a day, depending on what kind of day I am having. I have to walk downstairs to get to the candy, or I get it as I am walking in the door from lunch. I also give her $20 every so often to pay for the candy (I’m into the pure chocolate, which is more expensive than the non-chocolate junk)! Assistant knows it is my routine and has no objection, particularly since I help buy the candy I eat and the candy others eat. If I keep a jar on my desk, it is gone in a matter of days. My self control is very low when it comes to chocolate.

  5. anon for this :

    Love this bag – such a pretty purple and looks like a functional bag, too.

    How is the departure of an employee handled at your office? I’m referring to when someone in good standing leaves on good terms with ample notice. My previous jobs have been for very small groups (<5 ppl) so I’m not sure if the way it’s handled at my current organization (~300 ppl) is the norm or not.

    Managers do not acknowledge. Nothing is mentioned at department meetings. There’s no email notifying everyone and thanking them for their work. Cards aren’t circulated. News travels somewhat by word of mouth, but it is common to not learn about coworker’s departure until after they are gone. Sometimes people take it upon themselves to send an email to everyone on their last day. Occasionally another coworker will plan a brief reception (which are always well attended) or pass a card around.

    I think it’s very strange that the departure of an employee is not acknowledged by management at all. I’ve been here three years and there has never been any official recognition. My employer prides itself on being employee-focused. The atmosphere between peers is social and amicable, but there’s been some strain with upper management. The lack of acknowledgement is starting to make me and others uncomfortable. It’s obviously an issue in terms of work flow, but it also stings on a personal level.

    What I find additionally odd is that they always send out an email if someone has been fired. Although they try to make it seem like a friendly departure, we all know that an email means there were serious issues.

    • My current org is about the same size as yours. Someone usually arranges a happy hour for the departing colleague and the entire department is invited via email. The same was true at my last job, too. I find the lack of acknowledgment at your workplace strange.

      • emcsquared :

        It’s really common in the legal industry and in many midwestern companies to pretend that nothing has changed when someone leaves – DH worked for a very recognizable midwestern company that had a policy of never re-hiring anyone who left the company. My old firm had a similar policy, but is now trying to send me “alumni gathering” invitations, which is even stranger.

        • “alumni”=”future/potential client”?

          • emcsquared :

            If so, they might want to edit their list to *actual* potential clients, and leave out the disgruntled former employees! The last thing they want at one of their marketing functions is for me to show up…*grin*

      • Bluejay, that seems normal to me. I’d happily settle for a “So-and-so is leaving us at the end of the month. We thank them for their hard work here and wish them well.” email.

        emcsquared – We’re not law or in the midwest, but that seems a lot like the mood here. The higher-ups seem to get a big chip on their shoulder if someone leaves. It’s uncomfortable for those leaving. I guess I’m appalled that they can’t even fake a friendly parting, even just for the sake of informing the rest of us.

    • That is very interesting. I used to work for a company that was ~600 employees. Typically those who left would send out a long, flowery email to the entire organization thanking everyone for their experiences and friendships. Personally I always found them a little cheesy but harmless.
      On the other hand, there was an awkward veil of silence surrounding firings with the individuals in question there one minute and gone the next, usually with the bare minimum communicated to only the closest co-workers (“Coalea will not be here any longer.”)

    • Merabella :

      I work in a much smaller organization (about 50). We have a welcome breakfast for every new employee, and a goodbye breakfast for every employee moving on to a new opportunity. They LOVE a party around here though, so I don’t know that our policy is the norm. It is nice though to get together.

      They also send out a thank you email to the person to everyone, and attach their resignation letter. I have never seen this before, and it seems kind of odd to me to be honest.

      • 45 person company. We do a welcome lunch for new employees and are generally pretty forced-celebratory. But upon departures to competitors, it’s as if the person leaving no longer exists. Word travels via gossip. Nothing official.

    • MaggieLizer :

      My last firm was about half the size of your company. All attorneys submitted formal resignation letters, which were circulated to the entire firm sometime before the attorney left. If they liked you, they would throw you a little reception on your last day or the night before your last day (which included alcohol if they REALLY liked you). If they didn’t like you or if you got fired, they would announce your departure the day of or the day before, and for attorneys wouldn’t send out your resignation letter.

    • lawsuited :

      I’m leaving a firm of approx. 50 people in 3 weeks (on good terms – I was on a rolling contract but found a better position elsewhere and gave a month’s notice) and they are throwing me a freaking ticker tape parade. I’ve already received 2 cards and a gift from people who will be on vacation when I leave.

  6. Anon for This :

    Immediate TJ: So I was the OP from yesterday – I told my boyfriend that I loved him and he didn’t say it back… (although I think he implied it in a text message – he said he wanted to say something this weekend but didn’t because he felt like he shouldn’t)

    Things have gotten from bad to worse. He had a major incident with his family and is now reconsidering the entire relationship I think (it’s long distance so it’s a considerable commitment to be together). He called me and told me this during the day today so now I’m sitting in my office with my door closed, trying so hard to focus on the million things I have to do but I just can’t.

    I told him not to call me until he had made a decision to commit to me and make our relationship a priority because I had nothing left to say if he wasn’t sure about being with me.

    Part of me is so scared to hear his decision but another part of me is just so angry that he had to do this during the work day. I’m trying so hard to just work but it’s so hard to keep my emotions at bay

    • kerrycontrary :

      I’m so sorry :( Once my boyfriend gave me really bad news at about 4 p.m. and I had to leave work because I started crying. It was something that could’ve waited until that evening, so not only was I upset over the news but also the timing that he chose. Do you have the option of just taking PTO for the rest of the afternoon? Saying you don’t feel well? If not, maybe a quick walk or a chat with a coworker can at least get your head back on straight. I know how hard it is to focus when you have major life decisions on your mind.

    • I’m sorry. Go easy on yourself. Get out of the office if you can.

      And if it comes to it, take it from someone who has cried at the office in front of colleagues more than once: there is life after crying in the office.

    • Can I just say, unless you’re a brain surgery or something is going to explode or something if you don’t stay at work, can you leave for the day? Go get your nails done, maybe buy a new pair of shoes, call your bestie and get cocktails when they visit work. Because before you talk to him again, you need to be in a much better headspace and decide what YOU want. You could do what IMMJ says below. Or you could decide to JSFAMO. Since none of us really know the whole context of the relationship, its sort of hard to say what is the best course of action. But either way, I doubt you’re going to get it together in your office today.

      Just my two cents though.

    • Anne Shirley :

      One day you will look back and be glad you’re rid of the inconsiderate jerk who thought it was appropriate to interrupt your work day with his personal bs. In the meantime, I believe the official prescription is cookies and wine, but I like to actually go out to a movie. It feels decadent on a week night (yep- I’m lame like that) and forces you to be unavailable for a while. I may or may not smuggle in a nalgene of wine.

    • Whoa, whoa! (Not sure if I spelled that right). He had a major incident with his family, and is figuring out where to go with your relationship, and you told him he wasn’t allowed to talk to you? I realize I don’t know what the incident was, or what he said to you exactly, but if this is someone you love it seems like you would want to talk things through with him and try to be there for him. It was crummy of him to tell you this during the workday, but wouldn’t you rather be with someone who considers your relationship carefully rather than responding to “Be with me now, or else” type threats?

      • I should have added that I’m really sorry you’re going through this, and that if you can slack off at work with no one noticing, or leave early, you should definitely not feel bad about that.

      • kerrycontrary :

        But I think what she got mad over (and I would to) is that her bf called her to just say “I don’t know whether I want to be with you or not” I mean…ok?? How is one supposed to respond to that. Perhaps she wanted to preserve her dignity and not beg him to be with her. I would probably tell a guy the same thing “well call me when you’ve figured it out”.

        • I agree about not begging, but I would much rather have a guy tell me he’s not sure he wants to be with me and is thinking about our relationship than have him tell me out of the blue that it’s over.

          Partly I’m bringing my own baggage to this, because I got burned by a boyfriend a couple of years ago who seemed to be pulling away; I asked him over the course of several months what was going on, did he want to stay together, etc., and he always said it was fine. As you can probably imagine, he broke up with me. I so much wish he hadn’t misled me for so long, so I could make an informed decision about what I wanted to do. At least the OP’s boyfriend is telling her what he’s thinking. (Btw, I also feel incredibly stupid for believing the boyfriend for so long that everything was fine, but that’s another issue).

    • Honey Pillows :

      So sorry you’re going through this. If you can’t focus on work things, try to do other things that take little focus but are necessary -organizing your inbox, organizing, etc.

      It sounds less like he’s less actually reconsidering your relationship than just lashing out after family issues.

      Additionally, not sure how old your boyfriend is, but if he’s in his 20′s, he may not have thought about what it means to be in a real relationship, with a future and actual commitment, and saying you love him might have scared him witless, even if he actually does love you and want to have a future with you. You have to decide whether you want to help him through that process of self-discovery, though.

      Regardless, he should NOT have done this during the work day. That’s a DOOSH move.

      • Seconded in entirety, but especially with regard to Honey Pillows’ third paragraph. Guys in their 20s take longer to figure out these things than women do, generally speaking. Just give him the time he needs to figure it out in his guy way, and in the meantime be there for him with respect to the family issues he is going through.

    • Merabella :

      Someone said this earlier, but ambivalence is SO exhausting. Be easy on yourself because this is a crappy situation. It was really crappy of him to throw this on you in the middle of the day. Just set a timer and work for a certain amount of time, and then give yourself time to have a chocolate or pin things or whatever you want just to make it through.

    • My comment got caught by the bot because of a spare c*cktail so here it is again.

      Can I just say, unless you’re a brain surgery or something is going to explode or something if you don’t stay at work, can you leave for the day? Go get your nails done, maybe buy a new pair of shoes, call your bestie and get c&cktails when they visit work. Because before you talk to him again, you need to be in a much better headspace and decide what YOU want. You could do what IMMJ says below. Or you could decide to JSFAMO. Since none of us really know the whole context of the relationship, its sort of hard to say what is the best course of action. But either way, I doubt you’re going to get it together in your office today.
      Just my two cents though.

    • I may have missed this, but the incident with his family ties into your relationship? They don’t like the settling down, etc? Unless it is something serious (and I’m just being an a**) the fact that he’ll let something little with his fam uproot his, is a big waving red flag. You’d be fighting this battle for years, so short term pain for long term gain.

      If it was something major and unexpected (parents of 50 years divorcing out of the blue/parent revealed cross dressing, idk) then he’s right to be shaken up. If that’s the case, when you leave work apologize for your knee jerk response, say you were upset that he’d say something like that while he knew you were at work, but you understand he’s going through X and will back off for awhile, but as his GF are “here” for him to vent/talk/distract him when he needs it.

      Sort of depends on the event, but I swear not prying (even though as I type that it totally sounds that way).

      • Sydney Bristow :

        Without knowing what he said to you or the family incident, I think you should seriously consider L’s second paragraph. If the incident was something major and not tied to your relationship, I’d try to be there for him and let him know that even if he needs it to be at a distance. It sucks that his first instinct was to want to reconsider your relationship, but maybe by being there for each other during a really difficult time you both can understand your feelings better. People do crazy things when they have something terrible happen in their life completely out of the blue (parents divorcing, family member died, etc) and sometimes feel like they want to be alone when what they really want is to process it alone while knowing there is someone there when they are ready to deal with it with another person. Not saying this is what he is doing, but it’s something to think about.

        I’m really sorry you are going through all of this. It sounds like a major rollercoaster of emotions over the past few days.

    • I’m sorry. It sounds to me like he might not be as into the relationship as you (I mean this in a nice way, even though I’m sure it doesn’t sound that way).

      I think you should let him know you’re happy to support him as a friend during his difficult family time, but you’d like to table the “relationship stuff” until he has decided whether he really wants to be a part of it.

      And to be honest? You deserve someone who turns toward you, rather than away, in times of crisis. You deserve someone who DOES love you back and isn’t uncomfortable saying it. And you deserve someone who doesn’t make you cry while you’re at work.

      • “You deserve someone who turns toward you, rather than away, in times of crisis.” This.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Yes… but… my instinct is to turn away from my DH and everyone in times of crisis. I go into survival mode. I don’t want to talk to anyone, I want everyone to leave me alone, while I focus on surviving the crisis.

          There’s only one girl you can count on now, Velma… The one thing I know… that I’ve always known… I am my own best friend. /Velma & Roxie of Chicago.

          I realize this is crazy (yay, therapy!), but it comes from a chaotic childhood. When I’m scared/stressed/upset/hurt, especially if it was a surprise, I push everyone away and go into a shell. Bad behavior, yes, and I’m working on it, but I think people with good/stable childhoods may not understand that it’s not about them or even our relationship. It’s about my own damage.

          • I’m the exact same way due to moving around constantly as a kid I guess and never feeling secure or at home anywhere. And my husband has abandonment issues. So when we fight it’s me pushing him away and him feeling lost… it’s not good. But the second I get hurt or feel threatened I clam up.

    • Anon for This :

      OP here. Wow – thank you all so much!

      I unfortunately do not have the option to leave the office but I’m planning on having a very large glass of wine when I get home and perhaps even going to a movie which sounds like an incredible way to distract myself tonight.

      In response to some of your questions/comments: His family thing was very major and scary and upon reading some of your responses, I now regret my reaction not to be more supportive. Essentially, his family issue called into question his ability to be flexible and continue to travel to see me. He knows I sometimes have trouble with the distance and I think wanted to let me know that visits may be less frequent. But I was trying to contain my reaction at work because I didn’t want to fall apart during the work day, and also was trying to give him space to decide what he wanted.

      I told him that if he was commited to being with me and making our relationship a priority, we could work through everything else but I wasn’t willing to be with him only when it was convenient.

      I do think that he probably is reacting to his family thing and it’s not really about me. But he does tend to shut me out when he’s processing and dealing with his emotions. So he won’t even really open up to me about how he’s feeling or let me be supportive

      There are a lot of really great things about him and our relationship – I just don’t know if he’s capable of being there for me emotionally, the way I need him to be. I guess I have some thinking to do too…

      • If you have different emotional needs/ways of processing emotion, the distance thing can be especially hard. He might feel like you need more of him than he’s capable of giving, and with family demands, that makes it even harder for him. This isn’t saying one view or another is right or wrong. Some people need and want more emotional involvement from a partner while others like to process things individually. But it might mean you’re not a good fit for each other.

    • Here’s another point of view, sometimes people get completely freaked out by other parts of their lives that they fear the sky is falling ( the Chicken Little tendency). Sometimes they freak out at inappropriate times in ridiculous and then call their wives/girlfriends at inappropriate times because they are freaking out. My DH has a lot of wonderful traits, but has gone a bit Chicken Little on me because I was a safe place where he could fall apart. I would give him a little breathing room and some rationale advice about how to handle the family situation. Chances are he will come around and you can address your relationship then. Good luck.

  7. I’ve been married forever so maybe I shouldn’t be commenting on a dating relationship, so take this for what it’s worth. It seems to me that if he has had a major incident with his family you might think about going easy on him – it sounds like he might be reacting to that rather than to you. And of course it was crummy of him to dump this on you during the workday. But this might be a time to take a deep breath and call (or email?) him and say something about how on further reflection you realize that he’s in a difficult situation with his family and you want to do whatever you can to be supportive of him, that you’ve told him how you feel about him, and how you’ll be there for him if he needs to talk.

  8. AnonFourThis :

    I sympathise deeply. I’m 31 and my biological clock has been ticking loudly for many years (I wanted and expected to have children in my mid-20s) but, as for you, a husband is part of the family structure I want and that has not been forthcoming. I can’t offer any advice, only share my own story.

    A year or two ago I did some serious thinking and a little research about options for having a child alone and this helped me to realise that while being a single parent would be feasible though hard, it is not what I want to aim for should I have the choice. Once I realised that more than having a child, I want a whole “family package”, that helped me to move forward.

    The next stage for me was accepting that I may never have children. It breaks my heart, still, but I have in a way come to terms with it. People say there’s still time, and that is true. But I cannot rely on that. I no longer *expect* to become a mother; I only *hope* to.

    This in turn has led to a change in the way I see my future. I’ve never been very career-driven, but I wasn’t previously aware of just how much I was waiting: waiting to marry and set up a home and begin a family. Now that I no longer expect that to happen, a number of things have changed. I am planning to buy a house rather than renting, and to make a home in an area where I feel settled. I am also taking the first steps of a major career change, to something I feel much more wholehearted about and which holds various different paths in which I can choose to specialise further down the line.

    I suppose in summary I no longer see myself as someone who will one day have a husband and family, but as someone who will be single. I am trying to make sure this attitude is a constructive one: while I do not deny myself the moments of grief, I make sure I remember to appreciate the freedoms and luxuries I have. I also help out friends with childcare – it can give me mixed feelings but having a close friend who is very honest about the harder aspects of being a mother of young children (she has the life I expected; I have have the life she expected!) is helpful when I am struggling to remember that the grass is not always greener on the other side.

    I’m not gonna say I’m all sorted out – oftentimes it’s still a huge sorrow, and my body physically aches to have and hold my own children. And when people tell me I’d be a great mother it can be so hard!

    Anyhow, my very biggest internet hugs to you karenpadi, and you are by no means alone.

    • AnonFourThis :

      Yikes! That was for karenpadi!

    • I’ve felt similarly for a while myself. I have to admit, at 33, I think back on how I felt at 26 and 27 and kick myself for being so down about being alone when I was young. 31 is still very young. You could meet someone in five or six (or more) years and STILL have a family. So don’t give up on that. Also, you could find yourself (if you chose to, that is) with kids first, then the husband. I think I read somewhere that most women who want to marry, marry. Just maybe not by the time their fertility window closes. All that said, I fully support moving forward in your life, living it fully, and loving with an open heart. I think that’s how you find true happiness. Sincerely wish you luck!

      • AnonFourThis :

        Thanks Batgirl. I know I may meet someone – I just no longer rely on it. I do know that if I accidentally get pregnant in a relationship that isn’t long term, I would be delighted to go ahead and be a single parent! But I also know I will not plan that.

      • Batgirl, you read my mind! I feel down about being alone at 28, even though I know it’s comparatively young in the scheme of things. But I figure I will stay this way forever, which makes me feel sad. And then I look back and remember that I felt the same way at 27, 25, 22… all the way back until I was a teenager. I am trying to break out of this cycle (self-fulfilling prophecy, much?), but thanks for the reminder to look forward, not back.

    • I am very much in the same process, although it’s less about having children for me than about the possibility that I won’t find a life partner. Caitlin Moran has some great stuff about this in her chapter on why *not* to have children (she also has one on the reasons why you should; the point being that there are positives and negatives to both). We don’t have good models for successful, adult, single, childless women in this culture, and so there’s a bit of finding your own way that you have to do in this process. It’s tough, but important work.

      • I’m reading that chapter right now on your recommendation, and literally laughing out loud as I read it. I’m dying at this line:

        “With female fertility being presented as something limited and due to vanish quite soon, there’s a risk of women panicking and having a baby ‘just in case’ — in much the same way they panic and buy a half-price cashmere cardigan two sizes too small in a sale.”

        • I laughed so hard at that point. It’s like the Nordstrom anniversary sale! Buy it now so that you get the discount, even though you might not actually like it!

          That chapter really helped me think through a couple of issues that had been bothering me about this issue. I had a long talk with my bestie afterward, and ended up getting to the position where I said, you know, if I’m 45, and I’m a kick-a&& partner at an AmLaw 100 firm with boatloads of friends and wonderful godchildren and a closet full of awesome shoes, my life will actually be pretty great, even if I don’t have kids or a husband.

          And THEN I thought, well sh*t. I’m an associate now at an AmLaw 100 firm, and I love my job, and I DO have boatloads of friends and the world’s best goddaughter and an apartment that I love and TWO closets of awesome shoes, and you know what? This feeling that I “failed” because of my divorce, or I’m unsuccessful because I have no kids is buuuuuuuuuuullsh*t.

    • karenpadi :

      Thank you so much! I am going to repeat this to myself until it sinks in: “I no longer *expect* to become a mother; I only *hope* to.”

      Good luck on the new career path and buying a house!

  9. Hi ladies – I have some recruiter-related questions for the hive. I was contacted by one today who, I believe, saw my LinkedIn profile. She asked if I knew anyone in my network who’d be interested in a CEO job at an organization similar to my own. For reference, I report directly to our CEO now but this would be a big jump for me. The open position is located in a town about 2 hours away from where my husband, child and I currently live — in an area I’d LOVE to move to given the significantly higher quality of life. However, my spouse and I both have great jobs in our current town, which is also where he grew up. We have a large network of friends and family here and while we’d definitely consider a move for the right reasons (dream job, good fit) this is very much out of the blue and, in addition to being a long shot, would have to be Super Awesomely Amazing for us to take the plunge. Lots to consider.

    In the interim, I have a phone call scheduled with the recruiter (an Associate/entry-level person, so probably not the final say on handling the search) to find out more on Monday. I’m drawing a blank as to what I should ask her, and/or what’s appropriate to inquire about. For example, we did broach the subject of salary and she said the board is “Still determining” that, to be decided in the next week or so. It struck me as a little weird that they didn’t even know yet what this position pays but that the position description has already been made public. I also asked her why the current CEO left, and she said he’d been there 8 years/time for a new chapter/they were sad to see him go. Hmmmmm.

    So yeah, any good/probing/truth-revealing questions or considerations would be much appreciated. I’m of the mindset that it never hurts to know more information, so I’m all ears for suggestions on how best to achieve that before I decide whether or not to throw my hat into the ring. Thanks!

    • Start searching their site for the press release announcing the CEO leaving. You’ll get the vibe if they were asked to leave or told to leave based on that. It sounds like by the pay and the odd answer, they’re maybe going a “new direction” and still trying to figure out salary, while probably paying old CEO a goodbye package.

      • Thanks — already tried that, no press release. But good thinking!

      • This. Scan through some relevant trade journals/biz papers to get a feel for what the company has been up to (and how it has been recieved) in the last few years. Is the company starting to look stale? Or has it become too diversified? Is the market for its core business weakening?

        Also (and you’ve probably done this already): Google the name of the old CEO and see if he shows up somewhere else which might explain his leaving.

        A question for the recruiter might be what the board expects the new CEO to accomplish for the company.

    • If the company is public, you might search Edgar for filings to see the current CEO compensation, as well as the financial trend with the company.

      Do a google news search for the company and see what you can figure out.

      I’d ask whether they’re considering an internal hire (why or why not) and what the recruiter saw on your profile that made them think you were a good fit for this company.

    • new york associate :

      Dumb question: when a recruiter asks if you know anyone who would be interested, is the recruiter really asking if you would be interested?

      • I have always assumed this is the case. Maybe I’m wrong, I don’t know?

      • Yes, it is 100% appropriate to respond to that saying “yes, I’d like to learn more.” But the recruiter’s goal is to fill the job, so it’s also appropriate to connect him or her with someone else you think might be interested.

  10. shopping help! Need some basic work appropriate heels that look good in larger sizes (I wear a 10.5-11) but aren’t super tall. My ideal heel is 2.5 inches, but can go as high as 3″. For incredibly cute shoes, up to 3.25 inches.

    Looking for recommendations of all types; office is biz casual but I am often presenting to clients in a suit.

    • Brooklyn, Esq. :

      Oh Bigfoot, you don’t even know…
      I wear a 12. My favorites are Cole Haan Air Talias, with heels (I think) around 2.75 inches. Last I looked, Z a p p o s was having a sale on them. These are the best I have found so far, and trust me I have been LOOKING. Dainty heel that still feels very sturdy, almond-shaped toe that doesn’t make my feet look bigger, conservative but not matronly. I have fussy feet and find these comfortable. I wish they came in other colors!
      btw, sometimes I can fit into 11s but not with these, I needed to go 12 all the way. I have the black leather and black patent and find the patent noticeably tighter.

      • Thanks!! I’ll check ‘em out. I’ve been “flats only” at work because my boss is a short and scrawny guy, and I look enormous in eels next to him. BUT he just left the company and my new boss is over six feet. I’m super psyched.

        • I’m not one to typo snark, but I love the idea of you in eels next to your boss.

          Signed,

          Someone with size 10.5 or 11 feet who loves Cole Haan (and Naturalizer!)

    • springtime :

      Corso Como. I love them so much. And my feet are super picky (my heel bone is oddly shaped and my skin is quite thin/rubs easily).

  11. I have been an attorney for two years and I want to start bringing more business into the firm. It’s a small plaintiff oriented firm. The other associates are very comfortable punching the clock. My goal is to become a partner at this firm one day so I definitely do not want to get comfortable. I already do a fair amount of networking with attorneys and young professionals. Where should I go from there? Any advice on books or resources for rainmaking? TIA

  12. lawsuited :

    IKEA TJ: I just signed a lease for a gorgeous new condo. The monthly rent is much more than I’ve ever paid before (the rent is very reasonable given the location and amenities, and we can comfortably afford it, but I’m experiencing some sticker shock being in a new area and looking for a “grown up” condo) so I need to buy a sectional but can’t stomach paying a lot for it.

    I like the IKEA Karlstad Corner Sofa in Sivik dark grey. Can anyone tell me how this piece wears/lasts? (I sat on it in my local IKEA and found it comfortable.)

    • My friend has this type of sofa and it works well but one of the legs broke shortly after she bought it. She bought another set of metal legs from Ikea (I forget how much this cost) and it’s been fine since then.

      • lawsuited :

        I was planning on replacing the legs with more interesting ones anyway, so that’ll work!

      • We have had this sofa for 6 years and its awesome. We have two cats and a dog that are shedding machines so we love the fact that we can machine wash AND DRY the slipcover. Also, the shape of the cushions have held up really well over the years to all of the abuse.

        One of our legs also broke (after 5 years of use) but its in the back next to the wall where no one can see it so we have it propped up on a cinder block. #klassy

    • karlstad alum :

      We also had one leg on the Karlstad break – we had to replace the entire arm. I found the covers got unusually dirty – they are washable, but its a pain. Also, did not find the couch that comfortable. We recently sold the couch and replaced it with leather from a furniture store – 100% difference – comfortable, easy to clean, etc. It sounds like you are not on a strict Ikea budget so I would go with something that will be more long lasting.

    • This is a weird response, but I believe Young House Love has the Karlstad sofa (perhaps in that same color) and they love it and it seems to wear well (they have a toddler). Check out their site (they call it Karl, if you run some targeted searches).

    • the bloggers at young house love own this couch and have reviewed it — check out their blog, i think they generally love it

    • Young House Love (diy/home decor blog) have that exact sofa I believe…. they likely have their reviews/thoughts on it posted, and probably quite a bit in comments from readers as well (young house love dot com). You can search within a site by putting into google: “site: SITE.COM search terms” — so like.. site: Y H L . com “ikea karlstad”).

    • I have the Karlstad in the lighter gray … love it. It’s comfortable and has held up well for the year we’ve had it. We spray-painted the legs oil rubbed bronze a la the Young House Lovers and it made it look much more expensive. My only coment on the dark grey is that in person I thought the material felt a little cheap. The lighter grey had more of a pattern to it and we get compliments on it all the time. Something to think about. (We also have a dog and even though the fabric is lighter than the dark grey I think it’s actually better at hiding fur, marks, etc.)

    • I have the regular Karlstad sofa in a light beige color and love it. If you ever get sick of the color, you can just buy a new cover.

  13. Ok, talk me down? Is this dress totally adorable or a bit too crazy? Also, I just turned 31 – am I too old to wear it? I’d hate to think so but the thought did briefly cross my mind….
    PS: This is totally not for work, so definitely no need to take that into consideration ;)
    Thank you!
    http://tinyurl.com/9fwoeyq

    • lawsuited :

      It has a slight crocheted mumu look about it? I wouldn’t say you’re too old to wear it, but I can’t imagine that it could be office-appropriate.

    • 31 is DEFINITELY not too old to wear it. I’m 31 and I’m a big fan of tunics/short dresses with leggings or skinny jeans for the weekends, or with bare legs/tights and heels for a night out.

      I say go for it! (This broadcast from your local branch of Shopping-Enablers-R-Us)

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Dude, you’re in NYC (I think) so anything goes. :-) If it will make you happy when you wear it, then buy it!

    • I think this would look awful on me, lol, but it’s super cute! I’m 36 and I would totally wear something like this not-to-work.

    • Go for it!

    • Totally in favor if it’s your style. It’s funky in a way that isn’t too young. In fact, related to this age-appropriate dressing thing, I’ve been thinking recently about some items that I feel I’ve actually grown INTO–i.e. it would have been weird if I wore them earlier, or I used to feel uncomfortable even trying them on.

      Rock the decade–I’m right behind ya!

    • Nothing wrong or age-inappropriate with rocking that! Although, I have always had weird fit issues whenever I try on Free People clothing, which I sometimes think may be because the brand is geared towards tweeny sticks.

    • I will be the voice of dissent and say I can’t see that looking remotely cute on anyone over the age of 11.

  14. Anonforthis :

    Anyone got any tips on how to push the issue of kids with DH?

    We just celebrated our 3rd anniversary, have been together for 6 years. When we got engaged/married, we talked at length about our time horizon for kids. I wanted 2 kids, he wanted 4. I politely did the math with him, and he realized his dreams of living a dual-income-no-kids lifestyle in his 20s was pretty incompatible with 4 kids.

    That was a few years ago. Here we are, I’m 29. If we want more than 2 kids, it’s really time to get going. I’m not super excited about being pregnant, but I am ready to start planning a bit more seriously. Any advice on the best approach? I think we’re both of the opinion that kids are in the plans, but it isn’t the “right time” (ie we’re having too much fun). But it’s never the “right time,” right?

    I mean, I’m not ready to start picking out curtains, or announcing that I have to be pregnant by 30, but given that we’ve got our lives together, have money saved up, what I think I’d like is to stop taking BC and see how it goes for a few months.

    Advice? Thoughts? Thoughts on how to bring it up without seeming wholly baby crazy to DH? I don’t want to freak him out if he’s really not ready– but as with many of the Big Things in our live together, he generally just needs a gentle push to get on board.

    • What about asking him when he thinks he’d like to start? That lets him give his thoughts without it feeling like you’re setting a timeline solo. If he says “I don’t know, I haven’t really thought about it” you can say “well, I’m 29 and if we want more than one, we shouldn’t really wait too long.”

      • Research, Not Law :

        I like this approach.

        I will say that there is no good time and that you can’t really over think it. At a point, you just have to go for it.

    • Maddie Ross :

      Maybe not the best approach, but I started bringing it up with my husband over some of our more boozy dinners out when I was about your age. Once a weekend, usually Friday nights, we go out for dinner just the two of us. During these, after a margarita or three, I’d start in on the topic. I think we both felt more comfortable waxing poetic on the possibilities over a low stress dinner than sitting down more formally and making a timeline/budget, etc. Over time (a couple of months), it started to be more a part of our regular conversation and we were better able to jump the hurdle of making actual decisions about how to time things/works things.

      • Anonforthis :

        This is the approach I’ve taken so far, and he’s on board in spirit. It is just a matter of “so, hey, baby time?”. And, admitily, I’m not psyched at the idea of being pregnant/ not drooling over every baby wanting to steal it. I just know that since I’m already married, there is no sense waiting another 3 years… What if it takes forever?!

    • I think you just need to raise it with him as any ordinary conversation. I’m not sure if you have an age cutoff for biological kids, but I think something along the lines of, “I’ve been thinking more about the timing of having kids. I’m not in a rush, but if we want to have two kids before I turn 35, and we want to space the kids out by 2-4 years, then I think we should discuss when we’re going to start trying.”

      My husband is less ready than I am (similar to karenpadi above, I’m 32 and my biological clock just turned on one day a few months ago), and there are a few reasons for it: 1) he’s just sort of freaked out about being responsible for something other than our dog, 2) he sort of feels like we’re “doing it wrong” (i.e., we rent, we have a ton of (my) student loan debt, we don’t have as much as we’d like in savings, etc.). But he also realizes that it could take a while for me to get pregnant, and the timing of 2 kids (for us) is not in our favor if we delay much longer.

    • To be honest, you sound kind of ashamed about wanting to have kids, like that you don’t want him to think you’re baby craaaaaazy. Stop that. This is a normal thing to want and a normal thing to have a lot of conversations about with your husband.

      What about just going home tonight and have a straightforward “hey, I was reading this thing on [C----ette] today, and it really got me thinking about our timing for having kids. I’m 29, getting pregnant takes a while, being pregnant and recovering takes 1-2 years, so doing the math… I think we should talk about when we want to get started.” If he freaks out and acts like a big man-child about it, then he’s the one with a problem!

      • ETA, because I was a bit too glib there: he might have actual concerns / fears / trepidation. That’s ok. Those things sometimes take several months of open conversations to work through, and this might be an on-going dialogue that you have for a while. My husband and I are actively trying and yet still having those conversations all the time, especially after spending time with other people’s children. But if he acts like you’re crazy for starting the conversation in the first place, don’t take that.

    • new york associate :

      You can also go off of birth control for a while without immediately starting trying to conceive. If you don’t already have it, read Taking Charge of Your Fertility, which is an amazing resource for women. It was very helpful for me to go off hormonal BC and start tracking my cycles. It just gives you much more information about your body, and if there’s an impending fertility problem, the Pill may be masking it. You’ll have to come up with another form of BC, but it’s not a big deal. And for me, my body is much happier without the added hormones (the Pill gives me migraines and makes me a terrible hostess for those ladygarden parties I keep reading about on c-rette.)

    • anonaswell :

      It took me forever to bring this topic with my husband because personally I too wasn’t that excited about having kids in my 20s. (we are enjoying too much, what’s the rush). Then when I hit 30 I suddenly started feeling anxious about it but my husband and I had talked so much about not being ready that I didn’t want to bring it up. I finally just bit the bullet and said it – I also told him it didn’t feel right that I should be so worried about bringing this up and I needed him to be open and listen every time I brought this up and not just wave it away. I am glad I did and I wish I had started working on it sooner

    • We had kid #1 accidently (oops!). We had always talked about having 2, but went through big upheaval and move across states, job change, etc. Last December, I was having lady garden issues with my IUD and got it pulled because of that. My husband, bless his heart, can sort of, well, perseverate on a decision (it took us 10 months to buy a new car, we’ve been debating a big boy bed for son for 3 weeks, etc etc etc etc) so I sort of knew that he’d never be ready in a timeline that made sense to me (I’m now 34, wanted to be done being pregnant in the future, wanted to be done breast feeding, up at night with babies, etc). So I forced his hand a little bit. I got the IUD out, told him I didn’t want to use OCP because of migraine issues in the past and didn’t want to chance screwing up fertility in the future, and that if he didn’t want to have another child, we’d need to use barrier method. He wasn’t that in to that idea, and I’m now pregnant. :)

      I guess it’s partly your husband, and how he approaches this stuff. I feel like there’s this reverse pressure to be “cool” about reproduction and not “baby crazy” But your feelings are your feelings and they’re valid, and scr*w what pop culture is telling us. You can totally overthink it. We would have perseverated on the decision to have #1 for a long time if it were for the nuva-ring. It wasn’t the best time to have a kid in someways — I was still a resident, we lived in a 600 square foot house, we weren’t even married yet. But I don’t think either of us look back and regret it in the slightest. Cause having a kid is pretty awesome.

      • To the OP — it sounds like maybe you’re not what I’d call a baby person…as in, you want kids but aren’t crazy about infants. (If I’m inferring incorrectly, feel free to disregard this comment.) I’m much the same way in that I LOVE my 2.5-year-old toddler daughter (and to clarify, I always have) but I’m pregnant with #2 and am WAY less interested in going back to the newborn baby days of yore. If this is the case, just remember: it passes! Even at 6 months I found interactions with my daughter much more rewarding than they were at first.

        • Agreed. I have always loved my son, but I liked him a whole lot better once we started seeing real personality and interaction at 6+ months.

        • Anonforthis :

          You have inferred correctly. I want a family, not to be pregnant. I’m totally on board for wiping noses and soccer games and birthday cakes, but I don’t get all warm and tingly looking at onesies and bags of diapers.

          As a couple, we know we want kids and a family- and we’ve spent most of our 20s in some form or other other of grad school. It’s been a great year of not having to worry about eating out, or buying shoes (!!), or planing super budget vacations….and so you can see the hesitation to throw a baby into the mix. But it’s gotta happen sooner or later, and I’m not getting any younger :)

    • I’m late to the party, but I went through this a bit with my husband, too. There were several times the conversation came up, but I couldn’t really get a straight answer out of him as far as yes or no and when and that sort of thing (my own ambivalence was an issue, too). Finally, though, I realized that I was really just going to have to make a proposal, so sometime last fall, we had already been discussing it with some folks we were out with, and on the way home, I got the ball rolling on conversation, and then flat out said “How about we stop the pill around Nov. – Dec.?” He agreed that that would be fine. As the time got closer, I made sure to mention it a few more times, just to be absolutely sure that we were on the same page, and he remained agreeable, and, well, we’ll be welcoming a little boy come December. (EC MD and I are due on the same day, BTW). So,in other words, at some point, you may need to stop hinting and start just actually asking, straight up, what he thinks of starting on X timeframe. I would recommend, though, that you give a few months leeway, not just “How about I stop taking the pill right now?” or something.

      Somewhat ironic aside – Hubby and I have been married since I was 21 (I’m 32 now). About a year or so into marriage, I started really doubting that I’d want kids ever (I was pretty against it as a teen, too), and I told him that I didn’t see myself ever wanting them. He got a little upset and said that he definitely knew that he would someday, and we had a big fight about it that was never really resolved. But, more recently (and with my bio clock having changed my tune), I guess with maturity or whatnot, he’s been very laid back about it – when I expressed concern over what if we couldn’t, he would say something like “Hey, if we can’t, oh, well, we’ll adopt, or we’ll just be, whatever, we’ll be happy either way as long as we have each other.”

      • I just want to advise everyone who is on bcp and is going to stop because ‘it could take awhile’, just be *prepared* that it can also NOT take awhile. Sure, sure, common knowledge is it takes a couple months for hormones to be normal etc etc etc.

        My first husband and I wanted a child relatively quickly, because he’s older and didn’t want to be 70 at highschool graduation. So I went off BCP one month before the wedding, thinking that then it would take a few months at least after to conceive.

        I got pregnant on our honeymoon.

        So, just BE PREPARED that although it could take awhile, it could also NOT take awhile. I was somewhat shell shocked.

        So just

  15. Fairly Legal :

    Hive: I have a fear of dressing inappropriately at work and I thought I had on today a wonderfully stylish yet work appropriate dress. I am a law clerk and I continued my summer internship into the school year. A paralegal commented to me that I look like I’m going to a c*cktail party. She may have meant it as a compliment that I look pretty, but I do not want to look like I’m wearing a party dress at work. I was wearing closed, rounded toe black pumps with a 2” heel with this dress in purple: http://www.dressbarn.com/detail/abstract-swirl-pleat-neck-dress/101071859/450

    Does that dress really look like it’s for a c*cktail party?
    I think I’m the youngest person in my office, and most paralegals and secretaries in the cubes around me dress either too casual or too frumpy for me to feel comfortable dressing like them.

    • The dress looks lovely and very work-appropriate. Don’t worry about what the paralegal said. The only thing I can think of is that perhaps she was surprised the dress is so colourful (do people in your office generally wear fairly toned-down colours?). If that is what is going on, you might consider wearing it with a navy blue cardigan….but personally, I wouldn’t bother even with that. Rock it!

    • lawsuited :

      I probably would not wear this dress to a c*cktail party, but I would definitely wear it to work. Especially paired with 2-inch heels it sounds fine, so maybe the comment had something to do with your hair, makeup or jewellery?

      Otherwise, don’t worry about it. The comment is likely coloured by the (low) standard of dress at your office.

      • lawsuited :

        I just realised that the comment also could have been directed at the fit of the dress. One would expect a c*ocktail dress to fit more closely to the body than a career dress.

    • Research, Not Law :

      That looks like office wear to me…

    • Cornellian :

      So… I actually would not wear that to work. Too colorful. I can’t quite picture it on another female lawyer here, either. FWIW, I’m in NE Biglaw.

      • Fairly Legal :

        Thanks for the input! I work in the midwest in a government office, where we’re pretty casual. I probably wouldn’t wear this dress to BigLaw in the midwest either.

    • Muddy Buddy :

      I love this dress! It would be great in my office.

      I can commiserate. I bought a brand new dress and wore it to my very first client dinner about a month ago. It’s a jersey shift dress that doesn’t hug my bottom, isn’t low cut, etc. When I wore it to work 2 weeks ago, one of the assistants asked if I was going to a c*cktail party after work bc it looked like a party dress. Of course I was self conscious all day and felt mortified that I’d worn such a thing to a dinner with the big boss and client. I expressed my concern to a fellow associate who talked me down.

    • Fairly Legal :

      I’m in the midwest in a government office. I probably wouldn’t wear it if I worked at one of the big law firms around here, and if I did I would put a blazer with it. The female attorneys at my office don’t wear suits every day. The office is fairly casual for law, in my limited experience.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      A few thoughts. 1- Her comment was likely colored by the way she normally dresses. 2- It looks like the dress is sleeveless, so maybe that is the issue. 3- You explained the way that the support staff are dressed, but what about the rest of the attorneys? Are you dressier than everyone else?

      • Fairly Legal :

        The women attorneys don’t wear suits every day, but a lot of the male attorneys wear at least a shirt and tie daily. I’m not dressier than everyone else ever. I don’t feel comfortable wearing more casual clothing because most of my casual clothing is not work appropriate. I am also young and I want to look responsible.

    • Senior Attorney :

      That is a great-looking dress, but honestly for the office I’d pop a blazer or cardigan over it. It’s not super inappropriate for work but it’s also not super-inappropriate for a cocktail party.

      And I think it was kind of inappropriate for her to say that to you, BTW.

    • Yup, looks fine. When I think of inappropriate-for-work-but-great-for-parties I think of the intern in my old office who used to wear sequin-covered dresses to the office. She was a third year law student, too. wtf

    • Honey Pillows :

      No idea on appropriateness, since I’m nowhere near law, but I love this dress! It looks like Starry Night.

      • I’m also a law clerk. One of our female attorneys (who is pretty snazzy) would wear that dress for sure, but in our (government) office, sleeveless is just a no-go. She’d wear it with a blazer or a cardi.

        So, maybe the sleeveless is part of the issue. I personally don’t think sleeveless without something over is law office appropriate, though if you get hot it’s fine to take off the jacket/cardi at your desk. JMO though!

  16. Jr. Associate :

    Ladies, I need some salary advice.

    I have been practicing for slightly over a year at a highly-regarded mid-size firm. I graduated in ’11, and although I work big law hours, I do not command a big law salary.

    My firm generally conducts performance evaluations at the beginning of every year, but I did not receive a raise this year because I had only been at the firm for six months. In the year that I have been here, I have worked very hard to prove myself, and I have received high praise regarding the quality of my work. I have more cases, greater responsibility, and have worked (and billed) more hours than other attorneys at my level.

    Now that I have been here over a year, I want to ask the partner for whom I work about the possibility of a raise. Should I just grin and bear it for another six months, or do you all think it would be acceptable to ask her about the possibility of a raise before that time? If it makes a difference, I have a great working relationship with her, and she has been somewhat of a mentor to me.

    • AnonInfinity :

      I don’t think there’s anything wrong with asking her discreetly if it’s something that could happen. Be prepared that she might say they only give raises at certain intervals, though.

      • MaggieLizer :

        Agreed. While you’re at it, you might want to ask more broadly what you can do to ensure you get the best raises possible as frequently as possible. Even if you can’t get a raise for another 6 months, your mentor can help you prepare to make your pitch at your next review. She might also have insights into what the compensation review folks look at in terms of evaluating associate pay so you can bolster your case over the coming months.

      • I think it is very likely raises are only given annually, on a specific cycle – with rare exceptions in unusual circumstances. I can’t really imagine giving an associate 1 year out a raise mid-cycle (and then what? giving her another in 6 months? having to go off-cycle every year for her?). I’m not saying it’s a terrible idea to ask, but I would definitely acknowledge that you don’t know what’s typical at the firm. And on that note, perhaps there is a senior associate who you can discuss what’s typical first, before approaching the partner?

        • I’ll chime in here to say that raises are often tied to a firm’s fiscal year. So you can ask, but don’t be surprised if the answer is no. Agree with E– gather intel on timing of raises, etc.

  17. Research, Not Law :

    Not sure how many other researchers are in the hive to commiserate, but I have a vent.

    I looked up an investigator I used to collaborate with on pubmed on a whim, just to see what they’ve been up to. I found they published work that I was heavily involved with without me. It was the last thing we did together before parting ways. I had honestly forgotten about it. Stil, ouch.

    Well, glad I moved on.

    • Ouch is right; definitely not cool. Even if you’ve moved on, you deserve credit for your work.

      • Research, Not Law :

        I did think it was quite brazen of them considering that I should have been second author. They have my current contact information, which I know because they have contacted me to find out publication progress of one of my manuscript on which they were listed as an author.

        I was having my doubts about them when we parted, so this assures that my instincts were correct. It’s not something that I need on my CV. I just want to shake them from my contacts. I think they are struggling with P&T, which is why I looked them up to begin with.

    • LadyEnginerd :

      Ouch, and also not ethical. If you’re in a relevant field, start following retraction watch (blog on retracted scientific papers) and wait for the inevitable to occur.

    • PharmaGirl :

      That totally happened to me before. I was first author on a paper when I worked as a tech. The post doc I worked for got a faculty position at another university and published the paper with his *rotation student* as the first author and moved me to second, after I had reviewed the galleys. It was his way of getting her to join his lab as a grad student.

    • I’d be livid and probably be sending off snarky emails to my friends in the profession to make sure they knew, too. You could consider contacting her/her chair about it if you really want to pursue something, but I think you would first need to confront the author.

      • So not cool. I agree with anon prof that you should be networking with your contacts to alert them about this, in addition to directly asking the ‘author’ what is up. Otherwise, people may assume that you know and are okay with what they are doing.

        Different research field, but I had something similar come up – and I did bring it to the attention of upper-level people, so that there would be a record of this person’s questionable grasp of professional ethics. It might never happen again, as I did confront & work it out through mediation, but if it should come up in hizzur future career again, there are people in power who know that it wasn’t the first time.

  18. Seattle meetup! :

    Tomorrow for happy hour — if anyone missed the initial post about it last weekend and is interested in joining us, email me at acorpore t teinseattle at gmail (no spaces) for time/location. We’re still figuring out the exact details but it will probably be in Cap Hill, or maybe downtown.

  19. Brooklyn, Esq. :

    Boden experience? I ordered a bunch of stuff (not yet received) last week when they were running a 15% off everything sale…now they are running a 20% off sale. Has anyone had any luck getting a price adjustment in this kind of situation?

  20. For those looking to trade books, have you checked out BookMooch? It’s fantastic. Also, someone (Honey Pillows?) mentioned having an extra copy to loan of The Defining Decade. Would love to borrow it!

    • Honey Pillows :

      Yep, post an anon email address and I’ll email you so you can send me your address. I’m excited to get this lending library going!

      • [email protected] :

        Thank you so much! It’s westcoastrette at gmail dot com

    • I’ve used paperbackswap quite a lot – it seems to work similarly. It has a huge library and is very easy to use.

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