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Sonya
Welcome to the forum.

I have experienced something similar to what you describe – though that was when I was working in a big global consulting firm. While we never disclosed the daily rate, it was common conjecture that we must all be well paid.

I would concur that you say nothing – smile and bear it. Let your work do the talking. If they just want to vent, nothing you say will change that. Its about them not you. If those around you really want to know, they will ask you rather than make comments. Then, you can take the opportunity to share the pros and cons.

Harder to say than do – but take a deep breath and remember that you are doing this for you and not for the kudos from people you may or may not ever meet again.

abcvic