67
sugarcube
34d

I’m a 25 year old female navigating into coding with no friends who are coders. I feel very alone in this journey and am reaching out on this website to make friends and get advice to become. A developer. I am currently doing an internship and don’t have a job and my mentor is very arrogant and mean and just tells me to google everything and won’t answer questions. It seems like the prospect of ever getting a job or being good enough is hopeless. My mentor is very intimidating and discouraging. I need some support.

Comments
  • 21
    Welcome to the club!

    I know the feelinf of being alone in the field :) it sucks. Soon enough you won't have enough time to worry about it, about friends or anything else 😁

    prolly that's why your mentor is not as involving as you'd like him to be. Fwiw he's kind of correct to refer you to google. Google first and only when desperate - ask for help. But be very speciffic what help you need and don't expect your mentor to do anything FOR[instead of] you. Ask for hints, google/search keywords, explanation of business-related stuff.

    It's hard. But we love the challenge :)
  • 8
    I am really sorry you’ve ended up with an intimidating and discouraging mentor. That’s exactly the opposite of how a good mentor should feel. In one way they are right, though. It is one of the more important skills of our profession to be able to utilise search engines effectively to answer many of the questions we may have. Being your mentor they should be dedicating some of their time to help you grow professionally, however. The best thing you can do is try searching for the answers first, and if you can’t find any, return to your mentor with your questions stating that you already tried googling. The other thing you could do is take it up with your manager, tho how that’s going to go down depends on how good a manager you got…
  • 12
    the most important skills:

    * precisely describing the problems you have: usually, correctly defining the question yields in the answer being obvious. but it also makes it easier for others to understand, and for you to realise the smaller problems it is composed of, which you then can tackle one by one.

    * reading manuals and documentation. that's a no-brainer

    * using search-engines. yes, as junior, you're allowed -and encouraged- to ask questions (if your mentor isn't a dumbf*ck). but being able to _find_ the information you need is crucial.

    also, in my opinion: you need a _passion_ for tech. no matter how talented you are, if you get into programming because you have to do something - and not because you love it - you won't succeed.

    also: exercise. experiment. gather experience. always think about "how could this be done differently (both better and worse)". and do some small projects for fun - like a tetris-clone, or a brainfuck-interpreter
  • 3
    Hey there, welcome to devRant.
    First and foremost I'd like to say that, technically, researching questions yourself (google etc..) can be good since you will learn to help yourself instead of relying on others, HOWEVER as a mentor he shouldn't have you do this all the fucking time. He's supposed to teach you programming not talk shit.

    What a fuckwit.
  • 4
    I'm very sorry your mentor is a fuckface. I'll agree with the others' point that Googling and asking questions are 2 very important skills for programming, but as they are SKILLS, one cannot expect someone to do it well from the start, but don't worry, you'll get better at it with time and practice. And if the mentor doesn't want to, well, MENTOR you, fuck that arrogance, grow on your own.

    As for making dev friends, you can join our Discord server, I'm sure if you'll be active you'll get along with people, I myself made some really good friends there!
    Link for the collab: https://devrant.com/collabs/...
    Link to the server: https://discord.gg/jMp64VH (link is also in the collab)
  • 4
    @SoldierOfCode shameless plug
  • 9
    There are 2 things you need to know

    The first: your mentor is right. You WILL have to google, a lot, all day, all time.

    The second: your mentor is wrong. Learning how to google the right things is an art in and on itself. Toxicity is one of the problems of programming.

    For what it's worth, I always go out of my way to help noobs if they ask for anything. That's how they grow.
  • 2
    @IHateForALiving googling is indeed an art. We have to think through other fellow developers perspectives.

    What would the correct sentence be, if everyone were to collaborate and discuss.

    For example. Go developers always put Golang in their discussions because using only 'Go' is too broad and doesn't provide anything tangible for search engines to pick up.
  • 3
    Bottom line: don’t be disheartened even though your mentor’s a fucking prick and the dev community can be quite toxic at worst. Stay strong and keep learning, and you’ll do fine!
  • 0
    @sugarcube don't be down - I didn't have a mentor either... and look at me - didn't turn out to be a programmer... okay, bad example perhaps.

    Well okay, who needs mentors when you got Google?
    "...is very arrogant and mean and just tells to google eberything"
    Eessh, you're not making this easy are you? :D

    Jokes aside, your mentor seems to be a lemon, especially if he was assigned to you as one. You'll probably come across many more of his type as well as manualist who whill screech "RTFM" ("Read The F**king Manual") at you without providing any help whatsoever and be nothing more than just general waste of space.

    Tho, being able to find answers or to your questions (via Google or any other means, even smoke signals...) is a skill you can only gain via looking for yourself, it's easy to get a ready solution or an exact answer to your question/problem... but you won't be able to get anywhere if you can only solve problems to which someone else can provide answers to.
  • 2
    I'd say something but there's already multiple essays in this thread.

    What part of Florida?
  • 0
    @sugarcube I can, however, concretely say that you can completely rule out StackExchange network for looking for answers - that place is anything but a toxic garbage dump with all sorts of stuff accumulated over the decades.... you might find something useful via Google search but trying to use StackOverflow or other StachExchange sites is just a waste of everyones time involved.

    Instead, you might have better luck finding a group or a community for a programming language, tech or software on places like Reddit, Discord or good old IRC (now generally located at libera.chat)... or another messaging platform with group chatting option. No one is going to rip you a new one for posting questions on DevRant, but the place serves more of an environment to generally get away from solving issues and thinking about dev problems, which, many do on daily or hourly basis.
  • 1
    @theKarlisK disagree.

    stackoverflow is a great place. IF you are smart enough to RTFM, and use it as it is intended to be used - it is NOT a helpdesk, forum or code writing service, but a growing knowledge base; if the answer to a question is very likely to only benefit you, SO is just the wrong place to ask.
  • 0
    I’ll be your friend! If you feel like your mentor has the right intentions and can be completely trusted, I would tell them your goals and values with your career and that sometimes you can feel discouraged by doing 100% self study. I’m sure if they are good at heart they will attempt to change for you. I’m always stressing if I’m being “that guy” you are describing and would love feedback like that. Otherwise if they are just an asshole, it might be good to slowly search for another mentor.
  • 2
    @100110111 thank you so much! I know that part of being a good developer is being resourceful and knowing how to do your research, but BELIEVE me . I just asked this guy a very specific question about their database and their specific protocol during a server failure situation, this question was specific to this companies implementation so I did not think that it was a stupid question yet he refused to answer. He said he “didn’t have time” for question that I can supposedly google- I don’t feel comfortable here and it sucks but it’s nice to know there’s communities out there like this that will provide support
  • 0
    @AlgoRythm st Pete wbu
  • 1
    @netikras thanks I agree you need to be good at researching things on google - he was incredibly rude though!
  • 0
    @sugarcube I am the other side of the state in palm beach
  • 1
    @SoldierOfCode thanks I’ll definitely join in. When I get a chance to :)
  • 0
    @sugarcube oh wow that sucks.
  • 1
    @tosensei but that's kinda what I'm saying - it's a garbage dump... you might find exactly what you're looking for (via Google or another Search engine, but not by just diving in and looking through StackExchange network itself as it will most likely lead you in circles), a lot of the information gets dated with time and becomes obsolete or was plain wrong from the start (let's not forget it used to be standard suggestion to run *everything* from 'root', including, but not limited to, 'chmod 777' and then proclaiming that to be the solution). It has always been toxic, and has been raised as a discussion on StackExchange network many times (don't ask me exact references because that'll take a whole day to compile and I'm never allocating any resources in the name of StackExchange, ever.) because even legitimate questions get shot down, and I'm not talking about the average "how do I C++? Pls help" type questions...
  • 0
    @tosensei However, I'm not saying that StackExchange has no value and that it's a waste ... what I'm now repeating is that it's a dump - there's good stuff in it, you just have to dig to it...
  • 1
    @theKarlisK to be fair... when looking at the raw questions coming in, "how do i c++" would rank in the top third.

    and if you keep in mind that questions that have been asked before - and answered - don't count as "legitimate question", then you have to agree that those make up a very tiny percentage.
  • 0
    @tosensei I completely agree that duplicate questions are as worthless as the average "how do I C++" and possibly as useless as duplicate answers to inherently different questions asked in a similar manner (fault of the author tho). However, there's a fine line between spoon-feeding and throwing "RTFM" at everyone. And if "RTFM" or "LMGTFY" is the only answer to a question is then perhaps "DFB" - "Don't F**king Bother" (Note, don't take that as aimed personally at you - I'm speaking generally and saying it just to try to make my point). If every identical question asked is shot down with just "RTFM" (and no explanation) and it keeps getting asked again - does that mean it has been sufficiently answered? Perhaps we should just answer every and all questions on StackOverflow with links to documentation and lock the questions, because who cares - should have read documentation, then what's the point of StackExchange if everything is suppose to be answered by documentation?
  • 0
    @tosensei (Continued ... I write essays, sue me)

    Overall, times have changed - documentation has come a far way and it's rarely a completely indecipherable mess (or just plain missing altogether), we have more ways to communicate than just Phone, Fax and E-Mail. As I mentioned - there's user groups, chats, messaging boards dedicated to certain tech, software or *whatever* .... give it some time and as stuff gets improved/updated some more, even more of that StackExchange "knowlege base" is going to become useless. Instead you'll get more "How do I C++" questions that could have been answered and re-referenced to 10 times over in other places except StackExchange.
  • 1
    Welcome to devrant! Do not worry too much about fuckface mentors, this happens often in the I.T field and it is not your fault.

    the good thing is that being self-taught can literally boost up your skills and you will be able to not rely on people like that at all :D

    Do not be disheartened, these things can be learned.

    What particular side of development are you just getting into by the way?
  • 1
    I feel the same thing as a trainee in a small company, it sucks, but I think you'll find people to talk to and vent here, including me, they are right about googling but they shouldn't be a pos about it. I hope things get better for you
  • 1
    @tosensei I cannot generalize SO, but I can say that if not 100% of them are assholes, then at least a good 85% of them are.

    I posted *years* ago a question concerning something that I believed was undefined behavior, when coding in Racket Scheme, for a DSL that I was building. got told that I have no future in programming. Gave multiple examples as to what the documentation meant, what I was doing and what I had tried, but explained where I thought I was wrong but could not determine if the parsing of the AST was proper or not. Can't remember all of it. But yeah, got told that I have no future in programming....even when I did everything right.

    wish I could find the question, but I can't, and I cannot remember if I had deleted it.

    It is not the first time I have seen such behavior and there have been even youtube videos explaining that the SO community is toxic.
  • 0
    @AleCx04 in my experience, an asshole-ratio of 85% is about what's to be expected of humans in general.
  • 1
    @Diego35HDs thank you so much , I can’t believe how nice you are!
  • 0
    @phat-lasagna thanks! I would love a new programmer friend, discord?
  • 0
    @sugarcube No worries! also feel free to reach out :)
  • 0
    Sometimes your first job’s culture sucks - but the next job can be Very different. Every job I’ve been at felt different when it came to coworkers and culture.

    At my first internship job I felt the vibe was quite dull, didn’t make any friends. At my second job I met a couple colleagues who are some of my best pals today. At my third we had the best team vibe and after-works but didn’t hang out much outside of work
  • 0
    The way he says it may be inappropriate or seem unkind, but "just Googling it" is ligitmately the most useful skill you can have in this profession.

    Unless you need very specific domain knowledge of the product you're developing, you will likely find your answer.

    If he is blowing you off when you need specific subject matter knowledge then he's a douchebag setting you up to fail. Not everyone is like that and I hope you can find a more supportive environment.
  • 0
    One tip can be to ask to work more with other devs in the team. Sometimes you can find another dev who basically becomes your informal mentor - when you don’t click with your assigned mentor.

    For example if you’re working with css - ask to work with the frontend guru.

    Most devs are happy to help even if they seem busy.
  • 0
    @kwilliams yeah like I was literally just asking a super specific question about the companies protocol during server failure situation. Like what the hell. He said I was wasting his time
  • 0
    @jiraTicket where I work there’s only two devs on the dev team- small toxic s-hole
  • 1
    @jiraTicket that’s a relief to know, thank you. :)
  • 1
    If it makes you feel better, almost every boss you run into will be a dick. Take this as a practice run into dealing with douchebags, and more importantly, recognizing them so you avoid every job that has them.
  • 0
    "google it" is actually the best advice you can get, even if it feels a bit harsh.

    my programming teacher in high school, who was actually the best programmin teacher i ever met, had a saying/universal response to most questions: "If it's not in the manual then it doesn't exist."

    the meaning was the same: the ability to find information and learn stuff by yourself is the primary and most important skill for a programmer.

    "I'm 25 years old... feel very alone..."
    Get used to that. Imagine how a 10year old felt trying to learn programming even before internet, not even knowing a single person who even knew what programming is.

    And I'm still alive. And better for it. When there's noone to explain stuff to you, you learn to explain stuff to yourself. It makes you self-sufficient.

    Welcome, btw. I don't mean to be harsh, and I wish you (and am sure) you're going to find many people here able and willing to help.

    I'm just pointing out the important fact.
  • 0
    p. s. : how is you being female relevant to anything in that post? because it seems to me it's not. and if it's not, why did you feel the need to explicitly mention it? just curious.
  • 2
    A male would never get this much attention, lol just saying. Good luck tho. I wish you all the best.
  • 1
    @Midnight-shcode @Midnight-shcode @Midnight-shcode Lol. For the same reason you decided to post a neckbeard avatar - to express your identity to potential friends on a faceless forum.
  • 1
    @Midnight-shcode because, unfortunately, being a woman in this scenario _is_ relevant.

    Rampant sexism can, sadly, still be a serious issue in this field.
  • 0
    @sugarcube avatar is a visual representation of a person. i customized the visual representation of me to surprisingly well fit how i actually look.

    i still don't start my rants with "i'm a male and [content of the rant]", because it's not relevant.

    i think you're missing my point.
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  • 0
    @Midnight-shcode in case you didn’t know, this environment is very male dominant, and it has been demonstrated over and over again that females generally have (and are given) a harder time. Of course that may not be the case everywhere, but there’s enough testimonies to attest that gender may be relevant.
  • 0
    @100110111
    ... and?
    other fields are very female dominant and i hear nobody crying sexism over that. people just deal with it.

    why, in your opinion, does this assymetry of crying "sexism" between male-dominated and female-dominated fields exist, in your opinion? i'm legitimately curious.
  • 1
    @sugarcube "only two devs" Oh, sorry to hear that.

    On the bright side: having an internship is great as the no1 thing most employers look for is practical experience so if you pull through you'll have an easier time landing a new job at another company. (I do think it's an advantage for beginners to work in bigger teams) Another benefit of a a tiny team you might get to do more "real work" compared to a big team. Keep your hopes up!
  • 0
    @Midnight-shcode because those female-dominant fields are usually less well paid. and because people - all people - like to complain.
  • 0
    @sugarcube yes there is a way to say Google it. If it is an advice that would lead you to the answer of your question that is a helpful one. If it sounds demeaning it could be arrogance.
    Arrogant folks think they look like a genius acting like that, but they are not. There is or will eventually be someone criticising them and their work and find them incompetent especially in leadership.
    They always trip and fall. Ego is the enemy. Companies are looking for competent and humble developers at the same time, not arrogants who think their code never smell.
    Anywho, it is not your fault and not everyone is like this.
    My advice would be, be confident and believe in yourself and only ask when you can’t find the answer yourself within a reasonable time. When asking, explain what you did to find the answer and why you think you got stuck. While asking again be confident, if it goes towards mobbing stand up for yourself. No one is assigned to overpower you.
  • 1
    If you don't like to Google it, Youtube it. Just like how you figure how best to peel an egg or which phone have battery that out last the rest... blah blah
  • 3
    @sugarcube as a developer of many years and now in a half / half world of development and management , I wholeheartedly support your pursuit of programming and development. We don’t have enough women in this field, and having worked with a few coding teams with women as colleagues it was really awesome to have them onboard with different perspectives and insights.

    Definitely reach out to supportive development groups - we have a “women who code” group in our area that actively run workshops and peer group meetings that help women evolve their coding careers . Maybe there is one in your area as well ?
  • 2
    Go to conferences, talk to other women in tech, build a network. Follow other tech leaders in twitter, YouTube. Move jobs if you have to. Don't let bad people ruin your happiness. You are strong and you will succeed in everything!
  • 1
    Darkwind@7896 is my discord. Feel free to write? I like self education quite much and can share roadmap I build. I could recommend few things what to learn first next
  • 2
    Learn theory first then learn technology. Don't dive deep but be sure to have a good understanding :)
  • 1
    Well, every body already answer it:

    - Master google/stackoverflow search and you will need less to interact with your mentor.

    As for him... be a pain in the ass and ask whatever doubts you have (but try to be precise on it). It is the fuking role of a mentor to help a junior dev.

    The nerve of some people... how much time you need to be around that person?
  • 1
    @netikras was just thinking that. I was like that too. A new CS grad joined the team and for her work I gave her a pretty thorough overview of what needed to be done. Fairly simple task I recall.

    But she kept coming back like I don't know what to do, need more specific instructions. And I guess my thought was "you're a CS grad, can't you Google it first and try to figure it out?"

    And yes I was pretty busy at the time but still was like show some effort first...
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  • 0
    @sugarcube can't remember, but I'm pretty sure it was pure coding
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