I've been meaning to write about this for a while but it's just oh so serious. I promise my next post will be about pixie dust or puppies or something.
For you ladies out there moving here for your hubbies, let me just say that if you like teaching, tutoring, being a secretary, or are a nurse, boy oh boy you are totally in luck! Riyadh is full of these jobs for expat women, and even if you have no experience teaching, the international schools and other tutoring opportunities abound.
If you don't like children and are not a nurse, and you don't have a job set up before you arrive, well come a little closer so I can stick my trusty pin in that rose coloured bubble above your head. The reality is that even if you find work in your profession here (a feat on its own due to your gender and the Saudization program), you will likely be paid next to nothing for your efforts for the simple fact that you own a couple of boobs and a hoo ha down there. Before you get here, if your husband's friends and colleagues say, "oh she'll get a job no problem" just be aware that 90% of the time the people who say that are full of sh*t; if it was that easy, why haven't you been recruited too?
When I first came to Riyadh, I thought I would be able to find work in my profession because it was in healthcare. For months I dug around, called, and showed up to hospitals, and actually I did manage to secure an internship at a hospital. As a job offer was extended to me, I was appalled by the pay they offered and turned it down. I am pretty sure our maid has better pay and hours than what I was given. It was at that point that I decided to choose early retirement. I was sort of unenthused about my chosen profession anyhow, so it was a good time to re-evaluate things on my end and I'm not really bitter about how things turned out.
Now now, before you get all depressed and disgruntled, let me say this as well: in time I'm pretty sure I would have found a decent job in my line of work. A lot of it is about making connections, getting names, and just showing up. Just be prepared to do that for the better part of a year, less if you're lucky or speak arabic, and more if the cosmos are not on your side.
Hope this is helpful!
2 months ago