I’m so glad you got a raise, Mary! And I really admire the consistency you’ve been putting into the job search front. It really takes patience and persistence, and often the timeline stretches a lot longer than we’d prefer. You’re sticking in there, and there’s a LOT to be said for that.
I would definitely see what kind of vibe you get from the actual employer. You’re right that it could be the recruiter who’s pushy and aggressive. I’m guessing that talking to the hiring manager might help you feel a lot clearer about whether it’s possible to make this feel like a 9 or 10. And don’t be afraid to ask questions that help you suss that out! And yes, I like the attitude of you allowing THEM to try to make their case to YOU, not the other way around. 😉 Let us know how it goes!