1. You’ve explained countless times what it is you do exactly—even so much as telling them that they can literally google your name and job—but because nothing you do involves spreadsheets, it’s impossible to fully get through to them.
2. In fairness, they do ask a lot about your job. But it’s mostly questions that implore you in a wide-eyed, panicky manner to reexplain what it means when you say you “work on the internet.”
3. You wish you could conjure a comfy seat and a bucket of popcorn as soon as one of your parents’ friends asks your parents what you do. The explanation your parents come up with is not only ever-so-slightly off, but always ends in some kind of justification for why you’re working there. Aw.
4. It’s even better when they unwittingly lie to their friends about your career because they just don’t get it. Nope, you’re not “an editor”—but you have edited your own online content.
5. They give you a lot of career advice that doesn’t necessarily match up with what you’re doing. “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have!”—frankly, both options involve you wearing the exact same thing. You don’t need to wear a Lord & Taylor pantsuit to work for the internet, Mom.
6. They’re not shy about expressing concern for your financial stability. You know they’ve seen your pay stubs, but you sometimes wonder if they’re reading it as Monopoly money.
7. Anytime you get into a discussion with them, they always ask something like: “Are you going to write a list for the internet about this?”
8. Sometimes they’ll go so far as to try and contribute their own ideas for you to use at work. You’ll wake up to text messages that say things like: “Your mother and I can’t watch television with commercials anymore. You should write something about it.”
9. If you spend time working from home, your parents translate it as you taking a day off. To them, it’s simply not feasible that you, donned in stained sweatpants and wearing a facial mask, could actually be earning money in that moment.
10. “What do you mean your social media presence is important?!?”
11. They’ve asked multiple times if you’re considering any other job offers or graduate school.
12. They can’t hide how flabbergasted they are when you say that you’re on a first name basis with the CEO or Founder of the company you work at. Their confusion escalates when you talk about said CEO and/or Founder as if you two even work in the same room, prompting you to reexplain that, actually, you do.
13. They make it very clear that they hate it when you produce content that includes swear words, sex, angry rants, personal thoughts, real feelings, and anything to do with them.