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Lesbian Quits Her Job After Finding Out She Only Got It Because She Was A ‘Diversity Hire’

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Being a minority in the workplace is often a fraught experience, and finding out you were tokenized and only hired because of your “diversity” can make it even worse.

That’s what happened to a lesbian woman on Reddit, and even worse, she was outed in the process. Needless to say, it didn’t sit well with her, so she went to the AITA (Am I The A**hole) subReddit for perspective on how she handled the situation.

The Original Poster (OP), who goes by soggycactus25 on the site, asked:

“AITA for quitting a job after finding out I was a ‘diversity hire?'”

She explained:

“I applied for a job (type irrelevant) suggested by my friend, who I’ll call P. He’s one of the two in charge there. He’s gay, very open about it.”

“I’m a lesbian, mostly quiet about it. I only tell some people, which he’s aware of because I explicitly told him to not talk about my sexuality unless I’m present and ok with it when I came out to him.”

“It’s an entry level job, experience not mandatory but appreciated. I have some experience with the position and P told me to put him as a reference.”

“I assumed he’d just put a good word in for me, because he didn’t elaborate, and we’re former coworkers.”

“I applied, put P as a reference, and that was it. I was called and hired without an interview, they just told me when to come in.”

“I arrived for my first shift.”

“Very quickly, P mentioned how I ‘double diversity’ just by being there, and that it was either going to be me or ‘some straight kid.’ Initially I brushed it off, because it just seemed like him joking around. I didn’t think he meant it literally, that’s how he jokes when it’s just us.”

“A couple hours later and I was working with some others. P was busy.”

“It came up that I was his new employee. Immediately, one of them told me about how I add diversity to the team.”

“I asked what she meant, because more than half the staff are already women. That’s when she said P is the only other gay employee.”

“So, upon finding out I was P’s employee, she knew about my sexuality, and she wasn’t even the other manager.”

“Speaking of, later on I got to meet the other manager, and she wasn’t aware of my prior experience with the position she hired me for. Just that I was P’s ‘little friend’.”

“She didn’t mention diversity, but she did mention that I wasn’t the ‘type’ she expected.”

“My impression was that I’m a bit more feminine than she anticipated, but I digress.”

“I finished my shift, left, and wrote a resignation letter. I lied about why I was leaving, I said it wasn’t going to work because I overloaded my schedule, two jobs at once is too much for me (which isn’t untrue, but I wouldn’t have quit w/o notice if that was my actual reason for leaving).”

“I haven’t talked to P since the day before I resigned, I know I’ve inconvenienced them”

“P always knew I keep my sexuality private and I only tell select people. Knowing he told the other manager made me extremely uncomfortable being there, and knowing that other staff members knew made me even more uncomfortable.”

“People weren’t aware of my prior experience, but they knew that I’m a lesbian.”

Anonymous people on Reddit were then asked to evaluate who was in the wrong in this situation using the following acronyms:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
  • NAH – No A**holes Here

And they were pretty unanimously on the same page what happened to OP was unacceptable.

“Nta. No one should be waiving your sexuality around like it’s thier accomplishment. And no one should be outting people to anyone else either.”

“I’d launch a complaint if I were you if there’s a headoffice or something.” —Affection-Sock173

“NTA, but you should have also been honest about why you were leaving.”

“You’re not responsible for people learning to be better, but you are responsible for what happens in your life, and this could cause you issues in the future when you apply for a job and for some reason they call this place to find out why you quit and they say ‘She worked 1 day and resigned’.”

“You should reach out to your ‘friend’ and explain the situation clearly…it’s not OK for him to out you like that, but being honest with other people is an important part of growth.” —dereksalem

“NTA. People should not out another person in most circumstances, but outing you after you made it clear you weren’t okay with that is inexcusable. Your friend is the AH here.” —Originalsquash0

“NTA, definitely not TA. Being put in a position where you’re the token is unbelievably disrespectful, I made a post about something similar too.”

“These people only hired you because they wanted to look a certain way to others, not because of your actual skill and talent and I think that’s disgusting. I’m glad you stayed true to yourself and resigned” —No-Application9003

“NTA, and honestly this could even be illegal (in the US at least), as employers can’t make any employment decision based on race, religion, sex (including sexual orientation), etc…”

“And the disclosing of your sexuality to what seems like everyone else in the workplace is, at best, unethical. They’re honestly lucky all you did was resign”

“Edit: the lines on making employment decisions based on sexual orientation are extremely blurry and largely depend on the state, so there’s a good chance what they did isn’t actually illegal, but my point was that if OP had chosen to make a fuss about it, it would likely still reflected badly on the company at the least.”FlanImpossible5660

Hopefully OP has a better experience at her next job.

Written by John Sundholm

John Sundholm is a writer, content producer and performer originally from Michigan. His writing has also appeared on YourTango, Delish and Medium, and he has produced content for NBC, The New York Times and The CW, among others. When not working, he can be found tripping over his own feet on a hiking trail while singing Madonna songs to ward off lurking bears.