Saturday, June 11, 2016


It has been one of my basic policies here on the Grouse to not blog about work or marriage, or at least to do so very little. Mostly for political reasons.  But this has the effect of, to a certain extent, sealing off the most important topics in my life.

Today I'm going to cross the line a little. On Monday I quit my job and, within an hour, began another one, doing the same thing at a different firm. This week has been a fire drill of talking to my clients, explaining the move in as general terms as possible, and trying to convince them to stay with me.  Thus far things have gone well.

But to back up a minute, just quitting my job was an important step for me. I wasn't happy where I was, and I had known that a change needed to be made.  There were scenarios which might have resolved the situation under which I wasn't going to need to do anything dramatic, but those fell through for reasons entirely beyond my control in April, reasons intimately bound up with the things that were making me unhappy. At that point in time I knew I needed to make a decision to change.

Which freaked me out a little. I have historically had difficulty leaving jobs under my own initiative. I had a great offer in DC in 2006 which would have gotten me out of another devolving work situation, but I couldn't talk Mary into moving from Princeton, and I couldn't insist on doing what I knew would have been a good thing. Instead I rode that situation out, and ended up being let go as the financial services arm of that firm got winnowed down as people left and as another line of business rose up to dominate the firm.

I also historically had problems leaving romantic relationships.  I couldn't admit to myself I was unhappy when, for example, a girlfriend and I were geographically separated and I needed more constant companionship and, lets face it, sex (this was when I was in my teens/20s). So I would cheat on girlfriends and more or less force them to dump me.

Sometime this spring, I realized that this behavior all traced back to my parents' divorce, when I saw the situation going south and I knew it was fucked up, but I couldn't do anything about it. So I stuck my head in the sand, denied it, smoked pot, drank beer, told jokes, and tried to wish the situation away. Obviously that didn't work out very well. My parents split up, which was the right thing for them to do.

So, quitting my job was the right thing to do. It has been an anxious, hard-working week, calling all my clients on the phone and trying to retain them as my boss does the same thing.  Then actually doing the administrative things that need to happen to hold on to them. Mostly it has been going well.

In the end, I know it is the right thing for me, and for my clients.  For reasons I won't delve into here, because they're really not that important in the long arc of my life, and those of my clients.

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