I Cannes-NOT do it anymore:
Mariam Mouna

Girl, YES. I quit advertising almost exactly a year ago. I didn’t quit because of diversity issues specifically, though I did start a women’s empowerment network in-house and then quit because of the push-back by so many men — it was an uncomfortable and unnecessary fight (an entirely other story). But I too became deeply depressed. I was having panic attacks regularly. I feel like I physically melted down. I felt like my ideas weren’t trusted and even though I was told to “own things,” my boss never actually got out of my way for me to do so. It was so confusing, frustrating and disheartening. It felt like nothing ever got done, even when I could see simple paths forward. Agencies are simply too stuck in their ways. Eventually I went from eager and passionate to distant and hopeless. I began to hate advertising and the meaninglessness of what I felt my life/career had become. I know that sounds dramatic, but that’s how I felt walking into work every day, knowing that what I did ultimately wouldn’t matter. It’s taken me a really long time to trust myself and what my value is. I appreciate what you’ve written and hope others start speaking out about this industry with more passion.

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