My salad dressing days

Post Major Lifestyle Event Jitters (PMLEJ)
June 6, 2005, 1:16 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This is a condition most commonly seen amongst women in their twenties and thirties who have recently given up remunerated employment to care for their children.

These women suffer from clinically identifiable Career Pangs (CPs), although these tend to decrease in frequency as the length of time since they were last in remunerated employment grows longer. This is largely due to (a) extreme fatigue and (b) inability to muster up the willpower required to make a decision.

These vary in severity and typically involve one or more of the following:
• occasional bouts of longing to wear pristine, freshly pressed smart clothing – this often manifests itself in the woman fondling trouser or skirt suits, sometimes in department stores but occasionally suits from her own wardrobe (provided these have not been given to Oxfam)
• a desire to hold an uninterrupted conversation with another adult without reverting to using phrases such as ‘leave that alone’ and ‘don’t do that’
• intermittent high pitched screaming (at children but more typically into the void that is their living room)

These range from the smell of a Starbucks cup of coffee previously associated with the workplace to reading in the newspaper of a former colleague’s meteoric rise to the top of the organisation. (Severe psychosis is often triggered if the aforementioned colleague is male and unquestionably stupider than the woman. This is sadly very common.)

Mild symptoms can often be treated with interventions such as cuddling a cute baby. When symptoms are at the severe end of the scale, forcing the woman to spend time in her former workplace is usually very effective. Post treatment interviews with women suffering from PMLEJ have revealed that any long term memory loss is very quickly resolved once they are re-exposed to office politics and mindless office administrative tasks.


3 Comments so far
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Oh how I know the pain of the “trigger” you listed. And sadly, I have to concur that it usually does involve a severe reaction when it’s a denser man that never had to consider staying home to care for a child. Sigh.

Luckily, I never had to wear trouser or skirt suits to work, so I don’t long for those, but I do miss the casual-dressy clothes I used to wear. I do wear them from time to time still, but the outfit inevitably gets stained or smeared with kid hand prints (jelly is especially magnetically attracted to my nice clothes) before I can even make it out the door anywhere.

Comment by katiedid

Oh honey. So glad you inserted the note of reality at the end about what worklife really was like. I’ve been a woman at liberty (which of course is not the same as a Mother of Children) for nearly five years and will soon reenter the workforce. I say YES! to the Starbucks coffee and browsing the internet at work and NO! to resumption of stupid-tasks-you-must-do-because-it-is-part-of-the-job. The remuneration part is the one distinguishing benefit. I also say YES! to that.

Comment by mireille

Hello. I just wanted to give a quick greeting and tell you I enjoyed reading your material.

Comment by Alexander Hinton

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