I’ve hardly gotten anything productive done this weekend.

Thinking about going to work tomorrow puts my stomach in knots.

I might be able to do substitute teaching, but it doesn’t pay well and the work isn’t guaranteed. So if they hire me I still need to find something else to do part-time.

And that’s proving difficult.

Last week was pretty bad even though it was a short week due to Martin Luther King, Jr. day.

Sometimes I can put up a wall and not let the bad calls get to me. But sometimes there are just too many bad calls in a row. And sometimes the caller is legitimately angry or upset or feeling betrayed by the company’s wrong-doing.

And they’re right.

And I raise my hand for floor support and get fed some BS excuse that I then have to relay to this person. This person who isn’t an idiot and KNOWS it’s BS as well as I do.

So then they direct all those negative emotions at me because I’m the one on the phone with them. Even though everything I say is recorded and I have to tell them what I was told to tell them. Even though I want to help them but can’t. Even though I want desperately to be able to relate to them as a person.

Sometimes there’s a hint of real human interaction – I offer my condolences for a loss and someone opens up for a moment to thank me and express their pain, or someone calls and explains some backstory usually involving the shareholder being in the hospital or otherwise incapacitated.

But I have to follow the script and I keep getting told to get my call time down so I feel pressured to stop them talking and get off the call, rather than engaging in those real moments. And then I hate myself for it.

I want REAL human interaction – not fake customer service bullshit.

Even when I was acting it was all about getting to the truth of what it means to be human. I want to be able to interact with people as if they’re human beings and my job doesn’t really allow that – what I’m doing FEELS fake.

Since I’ve been playing D&D, it hit me the other day that the company I’m working for is lawful evil. They’d like the customer to think they’re lawful good, and maybe they think they’re lawful neutral, but I’ve seen too much to believe that. All that matters is the bottom line and that the company comes out clean in the end. And if someone gets f*cked over, that’s business.

And I don’t work that way.

I don’t know how anyone can work that way.

I can’t turn off my brain and my conscience. Even if I could, I wouldn’t want to.

If they’ll hire me, maybe it would be better to substitute teach. Even if I have to go back on food stamps.

Then maybe I could sleep at night.

I just don’t know how to keep this up. I don’t know how to spend most of my time every day working for a company that goes against everything I believe in.

And I know there is always a system and nothing is perfect. But at least when I was working in the theatre there was a sense of community. Like we were all in this together.

Even in the darkest days of graduate school when I wanted to give up and quit, I could dig down deep and remember all the good reasons I was doing what I was doing and find the strength to persevere.

With this job I think I’m out of ANY reasons, let alone good ones. When “I’m stuck in my lease until July” is literally the only reason I can bear to go to work in the morning…. that doesn’t work. Not anymore.

Plus, the girl carpooling with me found another ride to work. We used to be able to¬†commiserate¬†about the job and that helped. But now I’ve lost even that.

Occasionally I can talk to other coworkers and that helps me feel like a person again, but the system is set up to prevent us talking, really. And there’s not a lot of space for meaningful conversation between calls, anyway.

I want to dig deep, develop relationships.

I’ve never done well with surface interactions.

I just feel so alone.

And that makes everything worse.

If I thought anyone at my job really cared – about me, about the customers, about ANYTHING besides making money… but I can’t. I don’t.

I just don’t know what to do.

But my soul is worth more than $10/hr.

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