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Is it normal to be completely ghosted by former coworkers after layoffs? Calls, texts, emails ignored (other than ones having to do with the admin aspects). I’m paranoid HR told people to not respond.

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I'm always surprised when this happens - I'd have co-workers I go to lunch with every day for years and the moment you're gone it's zilch. It shows who your real friends are I guess. Plus this industry is pretty small so chances are you'll run into each other again and then what? Funnily enough it's the more senior level ones that always are polite enough to reach out or engage - the junior ones don't realize that they will very likely be in the same position at least once in their career.

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Many people I've met and know are "immediate" meaning their world is whatever and whoever is immediately in front of them. It's nothing personal, just that you're no longer part of their immediate reality. I have good friends I rarely speak to, but when we do speak it's no holds barred. And I know if I needed something they'd be there. But our lives have gone different directions and we're no longer part of each other's day to day. This is one reason I think Facebook is so successful: passive keeping in touch (so to speak).

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You’ll hear from them when you update your LinkedIn and they’re looking for their next job. Remember that and ghost the shit out of them then

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likeupliftingfunny
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You gain a superpower when laid off or fired: the ability to see people’s true selves. Trust what you see and cut ties accordingly.

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likesmartupliftinghelpful
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My writing partner never reached out once after I got laid off when we lost the account I was hired on for. Cold. A lot of other people I worked with reached out and/or offered to help me find my next thing; including my ECD.

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I think it’s very telling who reaches out to you and who doesn’t. It certainly stung for me but gave me a very good lesson on not letting work be my entire life, esp socially.

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I left a job where I thought I had a lot of friends, including a really good friend I had traveled with and spoke to several times a day. Guess what? My calls and texts go unanswered. It’s painful. And strange.

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I’m sorry that happened to you! But true colors shine in layoffs, weddings and funerals. See them for who they are - you’re better off without them.

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That’s all normal. They are coworkers not friends. Separate your life life from the work life. It also doesn’t mean they don’t care. People just get busy. They also don’t want to jeopardize their gig or add more work to the list. You have to pull yourself up on your own.

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And why aren’t they your friends? We spend more time together than with our families. We support one another, have one another’s back, create things together. I considered these people my friends. Guess it was just me, but feels terrible. Also the bootstrap thing you speak of is BS. Humans need humans.

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Happened to me. You find out who the good humans are, and who your real friends are, after you get laid off or pushed out. People are afraid to associate with you. I have moved on and have a much better job now and surround myself with better people. But I still feel anger and resentment about the whole thing, unfortunately. But, at least now I know who the a-holes are.

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Depends on where you are. Smaller markets people are more spooked. NYC happens to everyone so no big deal. Let your recent co- workers be if they didn’t reach out to you first. Focus on who can actually help you get your next gig. If you can, jump back 2-3 jobs to people who have had similar experiences or knew you under better circumstances. It is weird and painful but hashing over what just happened is not going to be helpful for you or them. It sucks but you need positive reinforcement and inspirational people now. Your recent agency may just have too much toxicity now for people to feel ok talking.

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My favorite was getting laid off and people I rarely spoke to asking me to get them in when I went to a better agency.

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Yikes. For all those saying co-workers aren't friends, they're still human and don't cease to exist the moment you/they leave a job. I'm not even talking about keeping in touch as friends but just as professionals that used to work together and may cross paths in the future. I may not be friends with my coworkers but I still respect them enough to acknowledge or accept their LinkedIn or whatever if they reach out.

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Thanks, anonymous comrades. The hardest thing for me is realizing that the friendship was apparently bs. I won’t ghost the hell out of them, that’s not who I am, but it does hurt

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Been ghosted after layoffs and it really does show you who cares and who doesn't. It's a sad reality but I think the saying "out of sight, out of mind," really rings true, especially in this industry. It's sad to see people you spend endless hours with just stop...

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If the emails are about the layoffs or compensation, then they may have told people not to respond. If about other topics or just to check in, it may be that your coworkers aren’t sure how to act, or what to say and they likely feel guilty they still have a job (for now). It doesn’t justify shitty behavior or ghosting but explains what could be going on to cause it.

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I find that those that remain after a layoff ghost, probably out of fear, survivors guilt, or a combo of the two. The people laid off bond more tightly and generally help each other out. Been through it a few times in my career and it's always the same.

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Not surprised. It’s Game of Thrones. Sadly.

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They probably did. I had a friend that I helped into a leadership spot. I got laid off from sane place and it’s been ghostville since then. Better hope she never needs me again.

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I was told not to speak to my now ex-colleagues after I was laid off. Not legally binding, but I was young enough and scared enough to abide.

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Some people just don’t know what to say. I’ve been on both sides of this - I’ve felt the freeze so i make sure i always reach out

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