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21 People On Twitter Engage In A Viral Discussion Pointing Out How Having To Explain Resume Gaps In A Job Interview Is “Infuriating”
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People, Social Issues1 year ago

21 People On Twitter Engage In A Viral Discussion Pointing Out How Having To Explain Resume Gaps In A Job Interview Is “Infuriating”

Job interviews are a stressful deal, especially when you’re going back to the workforce after taking a break, for whatever reason that may be. Now, we all have our struggles in life and no path is the same. The same goes for taking a gap from whatever activity in your life, be it university or a job—we all have our reasons, and they’re all valid.

Apparently, some people who are going to job interviews find the questions about resume gaps “infuriating.” The discussion began on Twitter when one young woman shared her opinion about the need to explain resume gaps in a job interview.

More info: Twitter

A thread on Twitter has gone viral where people point out that asking about resume gaps in interviews is unethical

Image credits: unknown

Assuming you have experience in attending job interviews (because not everyone does), which question do you find the most annoying? Unethical, maybe? Apparently, for some people, it’s the request to explain gaps in your resume.

The now-viral discussion was sparked by a young woman on Twitter under the username @skhndh. In her tweet, she shared how she finds the request to explain the gap in her resume “infuriating.”

“Maybe something catastrophic happened? Why do you have to share intimate personal details to justify non-productive/non-labouring periods of your literal human existence,” her tweet continued. The post was met with wide approval, having amassed over 179k likes in just a few days.

The now-viral discussion began on Twitter

Image credits: skhndh

Many people were quick to agree with the original post

Image credits: Trashy_In_Pink

When discussing gaps in resumes, most people were on the same page—they felt like the question is not something they enjoyed answering due to their own, personal reasons.

“I don’t really want to explain…” one Twitter user wrote, sharing how their resume gap was due to a “total mental breakdown.” Another woman shared how her gap came from the time her parents died within a 3-month period. According to her, having to explain it in interviews feels “gross and exploitive.”

One Twitter user went even further and described the request to explain the gap as “ableist.” “Like no I don’t want to explain my history of major depression to you so you can further discriminate against me,” they continued in their tweet.

Image credits: BTBagley5

“Having to explain it in interviews is gross and exploitive”

Image credits: KrissyPeterssen

Image credits: laura_mccaslin

“This [crap] is so ableist”

Image credits: vegfeminist

One Twitter user felt that the policing of personal lives in job interviews might go to even more extreme lengths. “This will soon trickle down to ‘why is there a gap in your dating life?’ OR even ‘why is there a gap in your married life (read: child-bearing)’ you need to move along a timeline that has been set by the society and you need to be answerable to them if you are not,” they wrote sarcastically.

Image credits: Vrushal86921519

“Puts you in the situation of either lie to protect your privacy or tell the truth and risk prejudice”

Image credits: Marvinhumanoid

Image credits: OtterSeaborne

Image credits: adideshpande27

Others shared tactics on what to do when you’re told to explain the resume gap

Image credits: LaShaylaMonique

Some people in the discussion had ideas about how to handle the “infuriating” question.

“I think candidates should flip it and start asking how long the job has been vacant and why,” one young woman tweeted. Another user was pretty blunt: “Lie!” they wrote. “Employers don’t want to hear about your depression/mental health or sickness because it makes you look unreliable.”

One young woman, however, had different ideas of how to go about the request to explain the gaps. “The best way to handle this question is to explain your situation and follow it up with the skills you’ve acquired during that period. If you have internet access, you can do online courses and mention that to show that you’ve been productive,” she wrote. Her thought wasn’t met very enthusiastically on the viral Twitter thread.

Image credits: xocamilarose

Image credits: merelycat

Some shared their sad experiences related to professional gaps

Image credits: ComfySuccubus

Image credits: sarit_yael

Image credits: tigrvix

Image credits: milleronthewall

While some people shared how they handled the question previously in their lives

Image credits: BigBisc35707532

Image credits: BoredPrez

Image credits: bigbybrimble

What do you think? Do you find potential employers’ requests to explain gaps in your resume unethical or annoying? If so, how would you handle it (or maybe you have in the past)? Share in the comments down below!

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Jill
Community Member
1 year ago

I do hate one question even more, "where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years?"

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
1 year ago

Answer: "In a much better place than I am now."

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Zophra
Community Member
1 year ago

Why do they think they have to give intimate details? A gap could be explained as a personal or family matter. That's all. I don't think the interviewer really wants to hear details.

abdwap
Community Member
1 year ago

Zophra Good response!

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Troux
Community Member
1 year ago

People are taking this waaaaay too seriously and personally. Maybe it was for personal issues or something you're not proud of, but that doesn't mean that the company is asking it BECAUSE they want to dig into your personal life or make you feel ashamed! Any decent company is empathetic to personal issues; family emergencies, layoffs, medical leave, moving for the sake of your spouse/family, taking a personal sabbatical, etc. This question (and the followup of what you did in that time) is mainly there to look for red flags such as really and truly doing nothing with themselves or showing no motivation to learn, or making up excuses/lies. It's not about what caused the gap, it's about how you handled it and made use of it. That's it, no reason to panic.

Rosie Hamilton
Community Member
1 year ago

I think there seems to be a lack of knowledge on both sides of the table. Interviewers should keep their questions appropriate but asking about a gap isn't unreasonable. Expecting huge amounts of detail is. Questions should be based on skills, experience and knowledge that are relevant to the role. A few based on the persons CV or application where there are gaps or something unusual should be expected but people have lives, people sometimes don't need a job, or have families, travel, illness - none of these things should bar people from being employed & are sufficient answers in themselves. In the UK there are regulations around what people need to disclose and what can and can't be asked - regulations so no discrimination can take place. If someone has been in prison (if people are wondering if that's the gap) you only need to tell a future employer if the conviction is unspent or relevant to the job (because of children's safety - will get a criminal record check anyway).

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Jill
Community Member
1 year ago

I do hate one question even more, "where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years?"

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
1 year ago

Answer: "In a much better place than I am now."

Load More Replies...
Zophra
Community Member
1 year ago

Why do they think they have to give intimate details? A gap could be explained as a personal or family matter. That's all. I don't think the interviewer really wants to hear details.

abdwap
Community Member
1 year ago

Zophra Good response!

Load More Replies...
Troux
Community Member
1 year ago

People are taking this waaaaay too seriously and personally. Maybe it was for personal issues or something you're not proud of, but that doesn't mean that the company is asking it BECAUSE they want to dig into your personal life or make you feel ashamed! Any decent company is empathetic to personal issues; family emergencies, layoffs, medical leave, moving for the sake of your spouse/family, taking a personal sabbatical, etc. This question (and the followup of what you did in that time) is mainly there to look for red flags such as really and truly doing nothing with themselves or showing no motivation to learn, or making up excuses/lies. It's not about what caused the gap, it's about how you handled it and made use of it. That's it, no reason to panic.

Rosie Hamilton
Community Member
1 year ago

I think there seems to be a lack of knowledge on both sides of the table. Interviewers should keep their questions appropriate but asking about a gap isn't unreasonable. Expecting huge amounts of detail is. Questions should be based on skills, experience and knowledge that are relevant to the role. A few based on the persons CV or application where there are gaps or something unusual should be expected but people have lives, people sometimes don't need a job, or have families, travel, illness - none of these things should bar people from being employed & are sufficient answers in themselves. In the UK there are regulations around what people need to disclose and what can and can't be asked - regulations so no discrimination can take place. If someone has been in prison (if people are wondering if that's the gap) you only need to tell a future employer if the conviction is unspent or relevant to the job (because of children's safety - will get a criminal record check anyway).

Load More Replies...
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