It's impossible to know what something is like until you throw yourself into the thick of it. Even something as predictable as a job can be unknowable until you arrive. Years of college and on-the-job training go out the window the moment you're left without your supervisor or you encounter an unruly customer. Just listen to these stories below about how their dreams devolved into nightmares.
*The following article contains discussion of suicide/self-harm.
Reddit user, u/TonyWitDaBigCojones, wanted to hear how things weren't what you pictured when they asked:
When Emotions Mix With Businesshappy marge simpson GIF Giphy
I wanted/want to be an illustrator or graphic designer. I enjoy illustration but it's a lot more emotionally labor intensive than I thought it would be. Graphic design SUCKS
Punching Way, Way Down
When I was 16 the manager of our local GameStop liked me. I was personable and extremely knowledgeable on the subject. He offered me a job when I turned 17. On my birthday I had an interview and was hired. My first day I realized all of the upperclassman nerds who were bullied in school like myself had jobs at that GameStop. And they seemed to cope with the bullying at school by bullying younger employees.
My first week in I had a kid in the class above me throw all the Xbox game cases off the display on to the floor right after I spent a hour alphabetizing them. He grinned, called me a retard and told me to do it again. That was the first but not the last time I've cried at work.
Being a chef/cook isn't all it's made out to be. No creativity freedom unless you open up your own little business where you have all the freedom to sell and make what you like. Plus serving tens or hundreds of people is fun to a certain point. It's tiring and physically and mentally draining; but every once in a while hearing a customer say your food tastes amazing is very uplifting and almost makes it worth all the hassle.
When It Looks Flashier Than It Really Is
Might be a bit too late, but Investment Banking
Loved finance from a really young age and got a finance major in college. Was lucky enough to join a bulge bracket for a Summer internship.
That's when I realized that it was nothing like what I had imagined. While I knew they had long hours, regularly working 100+hours a week is something else. More importantly, it was really just a bunch of b-tch-work that I found uninteresting. It became quite clear to me why everyone seems to want to leave banking for Private Equity (which isn't THAT much better IMO)
Oh...I calculated how much money I made hourly. It came to about $8.50. The compensation looks decent until you realize you're working 100 hours a week and getting paid for 37.5 of them. Luckily I also got a computer science major while in college and now I'm working in software engineering.
Billing As Opposed To Healing
Working in healthcare in the US: I thought I would get to make a real difference and help people, a dream come true!
The reality was my managers expected me to bill for more services than medically necessary, and squeeze extra "units" of billable time out of every patient, whether they needed or wanted it. I quit that sh-t after I started having chronic nightmares and insomnia
Less Trench Coats With Fedoras And More Paperwork
I got a job working for a private investigator. I was so excited about starting, assuming the whole job would be fascinating. Christ on a bike it was boring. It was 90% paperwork and not any kind of interesting detective work happened at all. The boss was a d-ck too.
Teaching Alongside The Terribles
dream job —> professor. turns out people in academia are extremely toxic.
When I was looking into getting my PhD (grandfather was a professor), every single professor I knew or knew my grandpa talked me out of it.
Yeah, Horses Stink
When I lost my job as a waitress when COVID hit, I saw a job posting to assist as a horse breeder. I eagerly applied. Horses are cool! And I'd ridden them on occasion growing up.
The job...is not cool. It is slimy and stinky and disgusting as f-ck.
I too have worked with horses briefly and oh it's too true. They are beautiful to look at but they are nasty, mean, dirty a-- motherf-ckers to take care of.
You're Not Training For The Right Jobhomer simpson healthy food GIF Giphy
I feel very fortunate to be as employable being a doctor, but it definitely isn't what anyone thinks it'll be.
When you're pre-med, or even in medical school, you aren't prepared appropriately for the job you're actually taking. I don't think most people really understand that.
I'm a primary care doc, but I won't gripe about that in specific...I'm just gonna say that, no matter who out there glibly says "you know what you signed up for"...no, most med students didn't. There's just no way to quite understand how much bureaucracatic BS and insurance BS there is inside the US until you actually have to dedicate the majority of your work to it.Ssutuanjoe
Not What They Show The World, But What They're Hiding
I never actually got a job there but as a teenager I would always hear about how amazing the offices and benefits were at Google and dreamt of working there. It wasn't until I was my late 20s (depressingly enough) that I realized the reason their offices are so nice is because they want people to work absurd hours and never have to worry about like where they're going to eat or who's taking care of their kid.
My current employer does a lot of work with Google and we've visited their offices several times - no one is ever using those amenities. A lot of them just seem like they're there to show off to visitors. One of the buildings has a small arcade in it and the games are always powered off.
Still Getting Paid To Put Letters Together
When I was younger, I've always wanted to be a writer. Just like Jane Austen or something...
I write vacuum-cleaner reviews for a living.
When Customers Ruin The Thing You Love Most
I'm big into the Jeep life. I left the sh-t hours of a sound and life tech to work at a jeep shop. I learned a lot but customers are a--holes and it wore me out. Especially after COVID!
If I didn't have to talk to self [centered] customers all day it would have been a awesome job!
Never Let Anyone Make You Feel Bad For Needing A Break
I dreamed of teaching English in Japan, but the job was mostly grading (finding all the SPAG errors in 600 essays :/), I didn't get the student breaks off, and was constantly pressured to stay late and take sick days out of my VACATION (not sick leave).
I hated never having any free time and felt like my coworkers were criticizing me for being an inferior person for wanting to have a life outside of work. I actually wanted to kill myself because I thought I was a sh-tty person for wanting time off more than I wanted to help students and that the rest of my life would suck because of having to spend it all at work.
Asking For More Than They Bargained For
I dreamed of working on sustainable buildings, turns out it's about 50% getting yelled at by contractors because they don't want to do the things they signed a contract to do, and another 50% begging the contractors to give documentation proving they did the thing they're contracted to do, after you finally got them to do it. It's infuriating. Still doing it though.
Edit: to those telling me this is just what construction is, sustainability is an EXTRA step beyond those normal things contractors don't want to do. Asking them to do something they don't want to in normal construction is like asking them to jump through a hoop. Now ask them to do sustainability stuff, that's like asking them to jump through a flaming hoop half the size over a bed of nails.
Teaching Isn't For Everyone
I wanted to be a teacher. I student taught for three months, I got called a dumb mother f-cker on my first day. Later I was stabbed by a pin from a kid who was just going around stabbing kids with pins. I never got my certificate.
About 5 years later I started working at a day care and I love it.
A Well Remembered Lessonhomer simpson evidence GIF Giphy
Paleontologist. Living the dream, right? Boss slowly got more controlling until (eight years in) they stated "I pay you, do as I say". Not exactly a lot of available paleontology jobs and now with Covid I'm just treading water with temp jobs until museums start hiring again. Sent out some resumes last week.
People don't leave bad jobs, they leave bad bosses.
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Some jobs really don't serve a purpose to society, or they are a relic of times past that society has yet to say goodbye to.
Spam Spam<p>The person whose job it is to send physical spam mail. Nobody even reads it anymore.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Random_Fangirl888/" target="_blank">Random_Fangirl888</a></p><p>My wife went to med school and her student loans are all federal and are at 0% interest and are in forbearance right now. At least once a week she gets a letter from SoFi to refinance her loans which would make her ineligible for any sort of loan forgiveness or federal assistance. So much wasted paper and postage sending those letters.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/schu2470/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">schu2470</a></p>
Stuck In The Middle W You<p>In my experience: A large percentage of middle management. Usually they just wind up inventing fake work reports so they can appear to be adding value.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/PasteTank/" target="_blank">PasteTank</a></p><p>My company is trying to cut costs, and thankfully some of the layoffs and unfilled vacancies have been middle management. It makes me wonder what their purpose was in the first place? I swear management makes new management positions to give their work to.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/C0PPER13/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">C0PPER13</a></p>
Grumble Grumble<p>My MIL tells me that during the days of the USSR there were people who sat at desks at the entrances of subway stations. They didn't actually do anything, but that was their job since by law for a while in the Soviet Union everyone needed to have a job.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/heybrother45/" target="_blank">heybrother45</a></p><p>Their job is to be unhelpful and surly. Those jobs still exist in some post-Soviet countries.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/jtbc/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">jtbc</a></p>
Jogging Doggos<p>Driving around Las Vegas I passed a mobile dog treadmill service. They come to your house and let your dog walk on a treadmill inside a Sprinter van.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/jesset60819/" target="_blank">jesset60819</a></p><p>idk i can see the value in this. las vegas can easily get over 100 degrees F outside, not guaranteed safe to walk a dog in that, could overheat or burn their paws. and not everyone wants a treadmill in their house</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/PizzaQuest420/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">PizzaQuest420</a></p>
Yeah, Why?<p>Bathroom attendant. Elevator operator. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/openletter8/" target="_blank">openletter8</a></p><p>Imma dispute Bathroom attendants by saying, their actual job is to keep drunks form trashing the stalls, the whole towels and mints shebang is to give them something to do on the meantime</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Maycrofy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Maycrofy</a></p>
I Am The Captain Now<p>Casino Barge Captain.</p><p>Many places in the US have riverboat casino laws that are used to justify large casino barges that are tethered in position and never move, not even having any engines or other means of conveyance. </p><p>Since they are technically barges despite being immobile they are legally required to have a Captain certified to operate vessels of that tonnage and crew on board at all times of operation.</p><p>I can't imagine a more gravy position than "exist on the premises with your piece of paper"</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Umbrella_merc/" target="_blank">Umbrella_merc</a></p>
You May NOT Touch Your Gas<p>For the states that require it, the gas station employees that fill up your tank. I ended up in New Jersey and it was super awkward.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/DaveyJonas/" target="_blank">DaveyJonas</a></p><p>Saw this woman standing next to her SUV for ten minutes at the gas station. Finally she asks me why no one is pumping her gas for her. So I says to her "We hate you cause you're from New Jersey." </p><p>She looks at me amazed and asks how we can tell. Eventually I let her in on the joke and helped her pump her gas. She was in her 40s, had she never driven out of NJ before?</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/damasu950/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">damasu950</a></p>
Up And Down<p>Elevator Operator. It's a union job. A dude sits in a chair next to the buttons. He asks you what floor you want to go to and he pushes the button.</p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Real_Time_Delay/" target="_blank">Real_Time_Delay</a></p><p>SF hired elevator operators for the subway stations. They're only there to ensure people don't piss on the elevators... which they would otherwise do.</p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/tyinsf/" target="_blank">tyinsf</a></p>
Sell Sell Sell!<p>Car sales people. Because you end up dealing with the sales manager when you actually purchase the vehicle. Car sales people can't even give you a price without checking with sales manager. They are literally there to babysit you.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Aroon164/" target="_blank">Aroon164</a></p>
Life doesn't come with a blueprint, instructions, nor a roadmap of what to expect in the days and years ahead. It does, however, contain all kinds of people who've lived life for longer than you.
Until It's Breezy<p>"Study to the point where the tests seem like they're insulting your intelligence. Best calc professor Ive had" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthzyk0?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Fruooop</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"That's a really good way of putting it. I'll have to remember that."</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Something I've read in the past, that's sort of similar: 'Don't just study until you *can* get the questions *right*. Study until you *can't* get the questions *wrong*.' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtj84pl?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">skullturf</a></p>
Stock Up First<p>"Pay your savings account FIRST."</p><p>"Don't wait until the day before you get paid to move the left overs into an account."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthl3w1?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">FrostyRain5286</a></p>
Actions, not Words<p>"Anyone can replace you in the job you do. It's not your job to boast about how irreplaceable you are, but to prove to them that they don't WANT to replace you."</p><p>"There's a difference." </p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti7zi9?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">[deleted]</a></p>
The Cardinal Directions<p>" 'When it's her moment stand behind her. When she's nervous stand beside her. When she's scared stand in front of her. The rest you'll figure out.' - My Grandmother on women" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthtx99?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">WholeMilkStandard</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"I love your grandma!!" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjky5h?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Neverthelilacqueen</a></p>
Keep Rage At Bay<p>"From my friend's late father, a wise old man from Trinidad:"</p><p>"Any man can get your goat, if you let him know where your goat is tied."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthmelk?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">JimmyBallocks</a></p>
Check Your Sources<p>"Don't take criticism from someone you wouldn't take advice from" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthtigw?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">thehotdeskpodcast</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Well that rules out like 98% of the people I interact with." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti82zo?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">MrEngin33r</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Thank you. No need to give our power away." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjihka?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">kittanjaan</a></p>
People Are Not Psychics<p>" 'You have to ask for what you want from people, make your position clear.' "</p><p>"Don't just assume people know what your problem is, communication is key. It is great for relationships, work, friendships, school and even playing team sports or video games."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti4ssq?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">SuecidalBard</a></p>
Let It Go<p>" 'You will continue to suffer if you have an emotional reaction to everything that is said to you. If words can control you, that means everyone can control you. Breathe and allow things to pass.' "</p><p>"It's easier said than done, but it's 100% true."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthmxbc?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">mytwoquarters</a></p>
Give More Love<p>"Don't be afraid to show gratitude. I don't know why, but for most of my life I was embarrassed to reach out and thank people for a variety of things." </p><p>"I'd say 'thanks' to stuff like everyone does. But feeling comfortable giving specific and thoughtful expressions of gratitude has been a journey well worth taking."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtikmwh?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">wtfreddititsme</a></p>
Comparative Suffering Doesn't Work<p>" 'It doesn't matter if someone has it worse than you, you're still having a hard time and that makes your problems valid and gives you the right for help.' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjac08?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">BenaBenaBadBad</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"I remember one similar to this that was like 'just because someone else is in a full body cast, it doesn't mean that your broken arm doesn't hurt' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtl6ln4?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">UnwaveringBear</a></p>
A school is supposed to be a place for educating and care for children.
Probably Shouldn't Be Around Kids Anymore<p>There's telltale signs when a person most likely shouldn't be around children. The following stories are those educators who should maybe consider a job doing something else. </p>
Unable To Keep Her True Thoughts Together<p>The one at a private school who broke down crying yelling "You're all f-ck-ups!" to the class and stormed out. </p><p>She was hired just out of college and didn't last long.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtoz53w?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">dougiebgood</a></p>
Silly Rules Which Benefit No One<p>A 6th grade teacher.</p><p>She was very mean to all the students and not just from our perspective. She was very particular about how things were done and in many ways it was unfair.</p><p>Example:</p><p>We were not allowed to take our sheets out of the three ring binder to write on them. The problem is, I'm left handed, so the rings were in the way of my hand and then she would yell at me for my handwriting.</p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp5fke?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">AntiqueStatus</a><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp5fke?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3"></a>
Taking Personal Issues Into The Classroom Way Too Far<p>Had this one teacher who'd hit me for almost no reason. Found out years later she had problems with my mum at the time</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtox0ae?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">tattooedbutemployed</a></p><p>Wait why didn't your mom file a lawsuit because of this?</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtq228k?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">Yung_Mulann365</a></p><p>This was pretty normal where I grew up. (Really small Pacific island, rather not say exactly) Disciplining your kids in and out of the house was normal. Like every morning all us kids had to line up in front of the classroom with our hands out. If our fingernails were too long or dirty, you get hit with ruler. </p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtq461w?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">tattooedbutemployed</a></p>
Enacting Improper Teaching Procedures<p>Becoming a decent teacher means taking hours of training, attending professional development classes, and doing everything you can to try to perfect your craft.</p><p>Or you might encounter one of these individuals leading a class with their less than stellar skills. <br></p>
Classic Awful Behavior<p>Ms C, sixth grade.</p><p>She would frequently body shame kids she didn't like and she was racist AF I was the only Asian in class and she would openly say things like, "what breed of dogs do you think is the delicious-est?" There was only one white kid in class and whenever he did something kinda dumb, she'd say, "What a white person thing to do."</p><p>She had no respect for other people's privacy and would openly announce grades. There was a dyslexic student who got poor grades and she would mock her for that.</p><p>She would never actually teach the class, she'd literally just rant about her life. She'd gossip about the other teachers and she was just a b-tch.</p><p>Did I mention she was a toxic feminist with a hatred for men?</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp46ps?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">PuppyCumMeowMeow</a></p>
Little Reason For Choices<p>Social Studies teacher in 6th grade. I worked incredibly hard on a project for National History Day and she pulled me aside, threw it in the trash and said she'd be ashamed to put her name on it. Still makes me mad to this day.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp7hz5?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">SnugBear</a></p>
Inappropriate Disciplinary Behavior<p>Had a woodworking teacher that used to lock disruptive students in a closet/room. Think he got fired for locking a girl in there. </p><p>Also had a teacher in primary school that whacked the class clown over the head with one of those old wooden 1m rulers and It snapped</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp7epu?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank"></a><a target="_blank">Existing_Lettuce_639</a></p>
Being Too Much Of A Creeper<p>Then there's those teachers we've encountered who...</p><p>Well, just take a look. </p>
Maybe Don't Talk About Boys' Willys?<p>Mrs. Thomson, fourth grade. She was a Brit who was always going on about how boys shouldn't let their "willy" do the thinking. I didnt even know what a "willy" was.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp1evk?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">ChaseDonovan</a></p>
What A Jerk<p>My History teacher in 9th grade. 1970's style, grey chest pubes popping out of his shirt with a gold necklace entangled in them. well over the line of obese but still not waddling. This was right after 9/11, so we all had to wear IDs around our necks and he'd always stare at girls' boobs saying he was checking ID. He used to give me detention if I walked in the class when the bell was ringing, but if anyone showed up after me it was fine. Made it a point to give me a hard time and belittle me in class, and I even had a meeting about it with him with out principal. Nothing happened of course because he'd been working there for 20 years. </p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtozbsj?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">mmm-pistol-whip</a><br></p>
Wait Until Your Personal Time<p>The one who got sacked for watching porn in his lunch break at school</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtowryd?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">CupperT2</a></p>
Human bodies are weird, man. And at times, they're completely unexplainable. Like, I can link my arms and bring them around my body all the way, without letting go. Don't ask me how I figured it out, but weird, right?!