Bubble Gum and Barbie Doll Shoes

Today I had my annual review at work. Last year’s review didn’t go very well. My supervisor had only worked with me a few months and, since he is male and his his late 50’s, he immediately formed the opinion that I was stupid because I’m younger and female. There were lots of comments in my review about having too many doctor’s appointments and needing to “learn more” and “contribute more”.

This year, I decided to show him how much I do know by speaking up often. I also decided to share more about my health problems with him like what RA is like, why I’m going to the doctor, how dangerously low my O2 sat is when I get admitted for asthma, etc. I’ve provided doctors notes for appointments and absences as well.

All of this seemed to make a difference. This year there were no comments about my lack of knowledge, inexperience, or doctors appointments. He only had good things to say about me this year thankfully. I got high ratings and a 2.6% raise (out of a possible 2.8%).

Unfortunately gender bias is rampant in tech jobs. I’ve had to stare down bias and prove myself for 14yrs now and I know I’m not the only woman who does. I’m just glad I was finally able to get through to my supervisor that my head isn’t full of bubblegum and Barbie doll shoes. Not every woman is so lucky.

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