An advice forum user has recently opened up about a difficult situation she is going through at work. In short, she is being made to feel uncomfortable due to the advances of a man 26 years her senior; in the long the matter is a lot more complicated than meets the eye. Let’s find out what’s been going on and her plans to quash the situation.
A One-Way Street
The original poster (OP) explains that she has always gotten along with this colleague but from her side of things, it has always been platonic and friendly. She works as a receptionist and speaks to several colleagues for long periods, but this colleague has seemingly taken her friendliness the wrong way.
Recently, he asked OP out for coffee during lunch at work which she agreed to. She says that she felt uncomfortable the entire time that they were there, and afterward, she told him that she only wanted to be friends with him.
Out For Drinks
For a few months, everything was fine, but recently, he asked her out for a few drinks. As this guy is her senior at work, she felt obliged to go, so she said yes. However, she is now panicking because she really doesn’t want to go but doesn’t know how to cancel on him without making things awkward at work.
She knows that from his side of things, it isn’t a simple case of friends going out for a drink together because he has been sending her flirty messages, and she really regrets saying yes. She also thinks that he is encouraged by the fact her ex was also in his 40s, but OP isn’t attracted to him in the slightest.
With comments about her appearance at work continuing and the “date” looming, OP took to an advice forum to get advice from others on how she could a) cancel the drinks and b) get him to back off entirely without causing tension at work.
What Should She Do?
Those who commented on the thread agreed that OP had indeed found herself in a sticky situation. One person suggested that the best way out was to speak to someone else at work about it. They said:
“He’s creepy, but I see why you feel stuck. If you tell him directly, he could make your work life hard outta spite. Going to HR may help.”
Tackle It Head-On
Others, however, said that she should tackle the situation head-on. One user said:
“Tell him you’re currently interested in someone else and have gone on dates. No need to tell him any details. If he’s got any morality, he’ll leave you alone. I’d cancel and tell him something came up. You go on this drinks thing, and it will only encourage him to do it more.”
End The Friendship Entirely
Finally, one user told her that the best way was to simply end the friendship entirely. Explaining why, they said:
“With creeps, it really is an “If you give a mouse a cookie” kind of thing, and they will hold on to every crumb you give them as an excuse to justify more.”
Has OP led her colleague on, or is this just yet another classic case of a man thinking that a girl being nice to him means she is attracted to him? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.