Never doubt your self-worth

4 min readJan 25, 2023

This post is inspired by recent events that happened at work and made me realize that no money, no job security should allow others treat you like a piece of shit.

It was back in October when my team and I committed to releasing a big change by the end of November. On top of that I had to work with external partners and figure out why we couldn’t receive certain API requests which blocked the whole business process and, eventually, stopped sales for us (putting this whole thing in very broad terms not to confuse you).

That period of time took a lot from me work-wise and personally cause I had just left Russia with no long-term plans, leaving family and friends behind again. The priorities at work were always changing due to “business needs” (aka whatever they suddenly remembered, wanted, or needed fixed because they wouldn’t allow us to focus on system’s stability at first place but I digress…). The team was working hard. There is a lot of legacy code no one knew well and we were struggling to make it by the deadline.

Knowing that we are behind the schedule, seeing clearly what’s left to do, and communicating all that to the CPO I asked if I could take time off. My CPO (the guy I am supposed to report to directly) said ‘OK!’. I was set: project docs, graphs, tickets — everything was up to date. I took 3 days off but ended up working on the 3rd day (cause I don’t have a life, clearly).

The CEO contacted me that Friday night asking for a call that following Tuesday. He emailed me a long text saying, basically, “How dare you take time off without letting anyone know and screwing up the deadlines?” I politely responded that I can explain everything on a call and also asked to move the call. I asked for 15 minutes! I had personal matters to attend and asked to move the call only 15 minutes later. His response was: “Canceling the call. No one will treat my business like this.” He then had been ignoring me since then.

Why didn’t I quit then? I dunno... I didn’t have a job lined up. I wanted to finish the project. I knew I liked what I was doing. So what if some little man, even if he is the CEO, is acting up?

So now. New priorities, a large project, amazing business opportunities. My team is responsible for it. What does the upper management do? Yeah, they fire our QA lead and one QA engineer out of the blue.
I have one Team Lead and one QA to test this huge change. But guess what? That second QA is out of the picture cause her computer broke (she can’t buy a new one, the company can’t provide her with one) so it is me and the Team Lead. By the way, the guy has been with the company for two months only. Legacy code, no test coverage, no QAs around, two months with the company and me — perfect situation for a major fuck up. Oh, and the other CEO was all about releasing it “ASAP” because “business is waiting!”. Really? No shit.

So it happened. Two days spent on tests just him and I. Release. Quiet day. Next day we get a message late at a night saying the Tech lead found a bug which is causing us a loss of big money. Quite a bit of it. My Team Lead takes it on, works all day Friday on it. Fixes it. All good.

Monday comes. Tech lead is requesting that I and Team Lead put together a letter explaining what happened, how we caused the problem, yada yada yada… We did. All was good. The other CEO was concerned but didn’t really seem super upset, she was all about continuing the work. We planned work for the upcoming week as usual. All fine.

Tuesday morning. I can’t access Slack. Thought that was just a glitch, wanted to login via email. Email de-activated. I contact my CPO, he clarifies with the CEO who has access to corporate admin account. That CEO tells him he had revoked my access because of the incident that happened the previous week. Only mine. Did not tell anyone. What was my move? I submitted my resignation letter right that moment.

Did anyone from the upper management contact me? Nope. Did the CPO have guts to explain what happened and why? Nope. Did Tech Lead do anything? No. He didn’t even know until today (Wednesday) about what happened. His words were: “Oh, not a pretty situation”. Not pretty? Okay. My words are: this CEO and his management team are the biggest cowards and most childish people I’ve ever met in my life.

The CEO, the CPO have yet to contact me. I don’t think they will though because it was the Tech lead who confirmed that my resignation was signed as of yesterday.

So what is the moral of this story? People can make money, have their own businesses, pretend to be a big deal but that does not make them less of assholes when they do not know how to treat people well. Especially the ones who choose to work for them, for their company, for their product.

I am out. I am done. And I fucking love that I stood up for myself. Long time coming. Now time to spend time at the gym, get massages, do my nails maybe finally, and just breathe…

P.S. I hope you can tell how mad I am in this post. I think I am mostly mad at myself for not having the guts myself to quit sooner. #opentowork ya’ll! LinkedIn is my best friend now haha

Wish me luck and thank you for reading this!

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