If you’ve checked any of the above and haven’t considered quitting, then run (don’t walk) to your shrink. I speak from experience. Trust me. It wasn’t until I developed ulcerative colitis (good times!) and a quirky little twitch in my left eye that I realized I was the idiot for staying in a ridiculous situation. The ulcerative colitis joined my twitching eye while I was producing a DREADFUL talk show that had systematically been destroying my life. I’m not sure exactly when my colonus eruptus, but it might have been the day my lunatic host spiraled into yet another of his nonsensical rages spouting racial slurs and declaring a “revolution” in the hallway. Even after I called studio security (as a means to protect myself and my staff), I went right back to work; this was, after all, just another 20-hour day at the office. Insanity, abuse and outright panic from above was the norm.
Bleeding colon or not, though, I wasn’t going down. WAS I INSANE? YES. Absolutely. After enough neuroses from the network and hostile host-ery, I should have walked out the door and never looked back, but I didn’t. I was too afraid someone would criticize me for not “toughing it out.” I only wish that I had had the courage to show what I was REALLY made of – STRENGTH. Real strength would have come from walking out the damned door.
Now I’m not saying this is easy. Quitting is a tricky business. You need to lay some groundwork before you quit, and that takes time and thought. So do it NOW. Obviously, if you wouldn’t be able to feed yourself or your family, you can’t just jump ship without a plan. So do your homework and, if you’re committed, you should be able to line up another gig within the next month or so. Then, BAM! You’re OUT!
Do yourself a favor and don’t STAY in your current job so you can prove to everyone that you can handle being abused. I’m no psychologist, but I think it’s safe to say there’s some old personal crap tied up in staying in abusive situations, right? So look at it for what it is and DO something about it. CHANGE IT. I wish I had. My new rule is this: Horrid people don’t get to keep good employees. When you stay in the job, you’re complicit in their abuse. Think about that: You’re condoning your abuse and that of others. YUK!
So go ahead, just this once let the door hit you in the ass on your way out.
NOTE: Be aware that unemployment doesn’t usually pay you if you quit, only if you're fired. There are hoops you’d have to jump through if you feel you were discriminated against, abused, overworked, etc. to get benefits. Check it all out before you make your decision.