No Job For You

My whole life I have been told how important first impressions are; make sure your clothes are clean; don’t put on too much make-up; that perfect hairstyle. How do you prepare for that first interview when you have psoriasis all over your face, neck, arms and hands and you can’t hide it no matter what?

I have learned over the years that first impressions count, especially on job interviews. I was always trying to put my best foot forward for a job interview, but having psoriasis didn’t make it easy. You just don’t know how that person was going to react to seeing you and your “rash”.

Ready for the interview

I remember going on a job interview years ago. I was perfect for the job and was so excited. I had spoken to the person who was interviewing me several times and she almost told me I had the job and was a great fit for this company. I was confident, well dressed and knew I had nothing to worry about. Remember she said, you are what we are looking for!!

I remember getting to the interview 30 minutes early and just sitting and thinking about how I was going to thank her for the job. When I got there I asked to speak with the interviewer who came out to greet me in less than 5 minutes. The CEO reaches out to shake my hand and abruptly pulls back and tells me, “I’m sorry, I have another meeting to attend. We have to reschedule”. I knew immediately the problem and just wanted to go into a hole at that time and die. I was so hurt that I went outside the door and stood there for a minute and cried. She came out of her office and said to the front desk person, “Did you see her face and hands? That was gross.” At that very moment, I knew life was not going to be easy for me in the workforce and I would never hear from that company again. I was about 20 years old.

Interview for life

It took me another 20 years to come to the conclusion that this was not my fault. This woman judged me on my appearance and not what I could do. She saw the outside and not the inside. I have asked myself over the years if there was anything that I could have done differently. Could I have worn less makeup, maybe a different suit, was I too confident? I don’t think there was anything that I could have done to make this person not see the psoriasis.

This situation prepared me for the real world. I had to always tell myself that this was going to be a good day no matter what is said or how people reacted. I learned how to manage frustration. Everybody will not like you, and you will have to deal with first impressions. They are all not going to be good.

I have learned to do my best and be my best. People are ignorant when it comes to psoriasis. They don’t know what it is and therefore are afraid of the unknown.

I have learned over the years to inform, educate and let people know that I am not contagious and have an autoimmune disease.

People hurt your feelings; they don’t mean too. This experience traumatized me for years. It taught me at a young age how people can be because of what they don’t know. I’m able years later to deal with first impressions and whatever is thrown at me. I have shed many tears and have been rejected many times since that dreadful day, but whatever is dished out, I can take!!

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