Handling an office breakup: ‘This really sucks’

Advice from a marketing executive who recently found herself unemployed.

Advice from a marketing executive who recently found herself unemployed

I’m going through a separation. Not my marriage, mind you; my job. Like the breakup of any magnitude, the moment it happens is agonizing.

Instead of delivering the verbal uppercut of a lifetime and turning on my heel, there I sat with a wadded tissue in one hand, a red nose and barely enough air in my lungs to mutter, “This really sucks.” How profound. I’m a marketer, for God’s sake!

Emotional cognizance didn’t return until I left the scene of my breakup and my ego recoiled. Only then did dozens of colorful comebacks flood my pounding head. None of them were ladylike, considerate or politically correct. But God, they were witty, scathing and cathartic.

That’s my mother-in-law’s mantra, which warns “If they’re bitter, swallow them.” I was bruised, yes, but bitter? Come on, who has time for that? Sure, this is painful; humiliating at moments. I was heartbroken to leave colleagues and employees behind, and I loathe unfinished business.

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