LoveShack.org Community Forums

Reload this Page LoveShack.org Community Forums > Platonic > Business and Professional Relationships

Is my boss hitting on me?


Business and Professional Relationships Networking and maintaining a positive environment in the work place is important! Surviving the 9-to-5 within.

Like Tree3Likes
 
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 19th August 2016, 9:04 AM   #1
Established Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 513
Is my boss hitting on me?

I've been at my job about 2 years now, it's a good position in a very large company. Now, the head of my division has always sort of...treated me differently than other co-workers. But in the last couple of months, he's been more forward and it's starting to get uncomfortable.

Back when I just started he was always extra friendly towards me and less formal, I initially chalked it up to the fact that I was the youngest one there. We eventually developed the sort of relationship that was professional, but involved some joking around and banter.

But recently, I feel like he's really trying to turn the relationship into something more. Some of the examples are - him and the other co-workers were going out for drinks after work and I said I couldn't go because I didn't have a babysitter. He responded: ''Well, I'll have to take you some other time then to make up for it,'' and winked.

Also, a couple of times he asked me to go to our lunch breaks together, just the two of us. I explained that on my lunch breaks I go pick my daughter up from school and drive her to dance lessons. He replied: ''So you don't eat lunch? Guess that explains that figure.''

He's constantly smirking at me and the way he talks to me, it just feels like he's flirting. We were going through reports one day and I was saying something about how much work we have and he said, while smiling, ''You push yourself too much. I guess we'll have to find something fun for you to do after the quarterly is done.''

There were plently more of comments such as that, that give me the impression that he's looking for something more. To be perfectly clear - I am certainly not looking for something more. He's a nice guy, but I have no intentions of crossing that boundary and hooking up with a boss. Plus, I am already seeing someone.

However, I don't know what to do with this. Do I approach him and say something? I don't want to make things awkward, especially since he hasn't actually OFFICIALLY done anything, such as ask me out or made a direct pass. Do I just wait for him to do that and then turn him down nicely?

How do I nip this thing professionally and clearly, without awkwardness or hard feelings?
noelle303 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 9:44 AM   #2
Established Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Down South
Posts: 1,148
Talk about how much you're looking forward to plans with your BF or GF whichever the case may be.....rave about something your SO did for you and how amazing they are....this should shut it down.
kgcolonel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 9:45 AM   #3
Established Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 814
Yes it sounds like he's hitting on you.

But what to do about it? That's tougher, because he's "nibbling at the edges," and being (somewhat) subtle in his comments. By that I mean, he has plausible deniability that he wasn't flirting for most of it, although the "that explains the figure" comment would be difficult for him to explain.

Female posters who've experienced this might be able to provide more specific advice, but is your boyfriend/dating partner ever available for lunch or just to drop by or something like that? Just having him around to casually meet your supervisor might help discourage the guy. I know you said you're looking to avoid a direct confrontation that might make things awkward, so that's my best suggestion.

Or if the supervisor is married or dating someone, you could casually bring her up in conversation, and perhaps if he suggests another meal for just the two of you, you could casually counter with "and you can meet "Jack"! (your dating partner) and I could meet Jill!" That would send a message that whatever happens, happens out in the open and not one-on-one.
MightyPen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 10:19 AM   #4
Established Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 513
Quote:
Originally Posted by MightyPen View Post
Yes it sounds like he's hitting on you.

But what to do about it? That's tougher, because he's "nibbling at the edges," and being (somewhat) subtle in his comments. By that I mean, he has plausible deniability that he wasn't flirting for most of it, although the "that explains the figure" comment would be difficult for him to explain.

Female posters who've experienced this might be able to provide more specific advice, but is your boyfriend/dating partner ever available for lunch or just to drop by or something like that? Just having him around to casually meet your supervisor might help discourage the guy. I know you said you're looking to avoid a direct confrontation that might make things awkward, so that's my best suggestion.

Or if the supervisor is married or dating someone, you could casually bring her up in conversation, and perhaps if he suggests another meal for just the two of you, you could casually counter with "and you can meet "Jack"! (your dating partner) and I could meet Jill!" That would send a message that whatever happens, happens out in the open and not one-on-one.
I kinda don't want my boyfriend at my workplace, but I guess I could casually bring up his existance.

I'm just nervous that I'll get questions about him and I'm a very private person and don't like to drag my personal life into my work life. The thing is that when I first started working there, people were EXTREMELY nosy about my private life. I guess being quite young and a mom, people get really curious. I've managed to fend them off, but I just know that a boyfriend will reignite their interest.
noelle303 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 10:42 AM   #5
Established Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 14,126
There's absolutely nothing wrong with a young woman having a boyfriend. As a matter of fact it would be more weird if you didn't have one which would create more curiosity. Yes talk about your boyfriend if you want you boss to leave you alone.
stillafool is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 12:00 PM   #6
Established Member
 
jen1447's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Midwest US
Posts: 9,372
Personally I wouldn't bring up the BF bc it smacks of being manipulative and sending subtext messages, which he'll pick up on, and which is exactly what he's doing to you to begin with. You don't want a subtext dialog in a professional setting, only a professional one.

Apologies if this sounds at all harsh but what you have to do is not flirt w him. I'm not accusing you of playing both sides or being a tease or anything like that but the reason most ppl push flirts and advances is bc they're picking up on it being receptive, or at least the possibilities. Esp in longterm situations where nuance has been observed. So he's (most likely) seeing you as a maybe based on your behavior. (If he's not and he's just being boorish, he's not long for this professional world unless he owns the company.)

If you give him absolutely nothing back but professional courtesy, he won't have anything to feed on and his desires will die on the vine.

Example -

Him: "I should take you out for lunch sometime" or w/e. grin/smile/smirk/wink
You: "No thank you." no grin/smile/smirk/wink
jen1447 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 12:44 PM   #7
Established Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 1,589
Jen has this correct.

Unless this guy is a true ignoramous, which is totally possible, something you may be doing is sending him a signal that you are not totally uninterested.

Now you may be young, but my guess is that if you are in a club and some guy keeps hitting on you, you probably know exactly how to make him feel like ice water has been dumped on his manhood in a New York second.

Stop playing games. In most organizations, even the suggestion of harassment is a big deal. The next time he suggests you go off alone with him anywhere, just tell him it AIN'T happening and thatr he needs to stop it and stop it now.

If that does not get through, there are more extreme measures.

And I agree you do not need any "boyfriend" drama into this. If you do that and still act nice to this guy, he may think you are interested since you are engaging him despite your boyfriend.

You are getting what you say are unwanted advances or suggestions. If you are in a responsible job, and it sounds like you are, you should know how to stop it pronto.
Friskyone4u is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 1:58 PM   #8
Established Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 513
Quote:
Originally Posted by jen1447 View Post

Apologies if this sounds at all harsh but what you have to do is not flirt w him. I'm not accusing you of playing both sides or being a tease or anything like that but the reason most ppl push flirts and advances is bc they're picking up on it being receptive, or at least the possibilities. Esp in longterm situations where nuance has been observed. So he's (most likely) seeing you as a maybe based on your behavior. (If he's not and he's just being boorish, he's not long for this professional world unless he owns the company.)
I generally agree with this, but flirting can also be very subjective. I won't pretend that I absolutely can't understand where he could've gotten these ideas from.

As I said, when I first started, he was being friendly and less formal and I stupidly took cues from that, and it sort of set the tone of our relationship. Now, in my mind - he was being friendly and I was being friendly back. But in his mind - if he was flirting even then, he could have seen it as me flirting right back. Hindsight, right?

I very much started to act cold when I first started noting his inappropriate comments. However, it does seem to intice him further, I guess the change in my behavior puzzles him a little bit and makes him want to try harder?

I don't know. I do think that mentioning the boyfriend would be immature and unprofessional, but I could try to see if it does the trick?
noelle303 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 2:15 PM   #9
Established Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: UK
Posts: 5,189
I 100% agree with Jen.
Banter is OK - normal banter but when he over steps you just be straight with him but with a smile - he'll soon get the message.

No need at all to mention anyone you are seeing. Your private life is just that - private and you have no need to share anything like that if you don't wish to.
One statement on that kind of subject can lead to question after question from others.
A newish bf sent me flowers to work when I had explicitly requested he never do that for two reasons - I dislike cut flowers - much prefer them living and also I hate the fuss and bother that kind of action incurs.
His flower delivery sparked off a tonne of problems over several years (and way after I dumped him) with one particular female busy body at work. It began with her asking way too many questions about him and just got totally worse over time about all of my personal life. She made all kinds of assumptions and she believed them so talked to me about me. It was actually horrific!
Finally, 3 (or it might even be 4) years later I believed I had solved the issue this year but in very subtle ways she is starting up again. She has been on holiday and she has a tendency to start up on me again after a holiday or after Christmas & New Year - the latter especially.
So no, keep your private life private if that is what you prefer to do.
I do - and always will. Only a very few folk know very uninteresting info about me and that's how it will stay.
GemmaUK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 2:30 PM   #10
Established Member
 
jen1447's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Midwest US
Posts: 9,372
Quote:
Originally Posted by noelle303 View Post
I generally agree with this, but flirting can also be very subjective. I won't pretend that I absolutely can't understand where he could've gotten these ideas from.

As I said, when I first started, he was being friendly and less formal and I stupidly took cues from that, and it sort of set the tone of our relationship. Now, in my mind - he was being friendly and I was being friendly back. But in his mind - if he was flirting even then, he could have seen it as me flirting right back. Hindsight, right?

I very much started to act cold when I first started noting his inappropriate comments. However, it does seem to intice him further, I guess the change in my behavior puzzles him a little bit and makes him want to try harder?

I don't know. I do think that mentioning the boyfriend would be immature and unprofessional, but I could try to see if it does the trick?
I think it's true that some ppl can take general friendliness as flirtiness. You can still 'kill him with kindness' here tho by just towing the line professionally. We all know there's a diff between banter friendly and just basic courtesy, and since he's shown he can't handle the former you'll have to limit it to the latter. Professional language tends to be pretty cooling so try to focus on that - "thank you John, I'll start the new project right away" vs. "right, let's go, woo-hoo" etc. You can also be cooler by smiling w your mouth only and not your eyes. (Try it out in the mirror - it's pretty easy.)

I really wouldn't go the BF route, no.
GemmaUK likes this.
jen1447 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 5:26 PM   #11
Established Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 513
Quote:
Originally Posted by GemmaUK View Post
I 100% agree with Jen.
Banter is OK - normal banter but when he over steps you just be straight with him but with a smile - he'll soon get the message.

No need at all to mention anyone you are seeing. Your private life is just that - private and you have no need to share anything like that if you don't wish to.
One statement on that kind of subject can lead to question after question from others.
A newish bf sent me flowers to work when I had explicitly requested he never do that for two reasons - I dislike cut flowers - much prefer them living and also I hate the fuss and bother that kind of action incurs.
His flower delivery sparked off a tonne of problems over several years (and way after I dumped him) with one particular female busy body at work. It began with her asking way too many questions about him and just got totally worse over time about all of my personal life. She made all kinds of assumptions and she believed them so talked to me about me. It was actually horrific!
Finally, 3 (or it might even be 4) years later I believed I had solved the issue this year but in very subtle ways she is starting up again. She has been on holiday and she has a tendency to start up on me again after a holiday or after Christmas & New Year - the latter especially.
So no, keep your private life private if that is what you prefer to do.
I do - and always will. Only a very few folk know very uninteresting info about me and that's how it will stay.
Oh, I would hate that too! I hate people prying into my personal life and actions such as flower deliveries are an open invitation to it.

I really have tried to cool it down in the last month, maybe it will just take a while to get the message across. Hope he's not the persistant type.
noelle303 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 6:12 PM   #12
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Everywhere!
Posts: 19
Noelle - Obviously the Boss likes you and there is nothing wrong in that. It is normal for people to fancy others.

He has been hinting for 2 years now so its not as if he is pushing that hard!

Just let him know in a roundabout way that you have a boyfriend and then he will probably leave you alone!
Mr_Fox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 6:54 PM   #13
Established Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 17,447
He's asked you out repeatedly and you have turned him down -- but your mistake is giving him hope by making excuses for why you can't go, as if you would go if not for your daughter, etc. You need to just stop making excuses or telling him personal stuff at all. Next time he asks you out, say "I don't date people I work with." Then hope he doesn't quit work and come after you like my boss did.

And no, it's not good that you have to put up with that. It's ridiculous. In a workplace if someone asks you out once and you decline, that should be the last of it. He's hoping to pressure you into it. It's not right, and it's sexual harassment and yes, he could retaliate on you. Best thing would be to either say you don't go out with work people or get a boyfriend and start making him visible. If you have a platonic male friend, you might have him pick you up or take you to lunch or go to an office party and pose as your man.
__________________
"I care not much for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not better for it." -- Abraham Lincoln
preraph is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19th August 2016, 8:55 PM   #14
Established Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 513
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_Fox View Post
Noelle - Obviously the Boss likes you and there is nothing wrong in that. It is normal for people to fancy others.

He has been hinting for 2 years now so its not as if he is pushing that hard!

Just let him know in a roundabout way that you have a boyfriend and then he will probably leave you alone!
Yeah, it's normal to like people, but he is the head of my department and a person in that position should be able to control themselves better. He should be aware making advances towards his employees puts them in an uncomfortable position.

And I honestly wasn't making excuses when I explained why I can't go on a lunch break with him. It's true that I use it to pick up my daughter and also, one would think that by hearing that when I'm not at work, I'm a full time mom, would cool him off, but apparently not.
noelle303 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 20th August 2016, 5:50 PM   #15
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 15
Fear of awkwardness and others' hard feelings are two of the biggest barriers for people doing what is right and they know it. In a professional and mature working relationships early, honest, clear communication is foundational. Unfortunately, not everybody is emotionally mature, and this does hurt their professional relationship.

Your boss is trying to get 'his nose under the tent' with his comments and you know it because it makes you feel uncomfortable. You also are mature enough to keep your own integrity regarding your other relationship, and you don't want the flirtation.

Try and tell him in the most polite way you can and do it early. But that doesn't mean it might not be taken that way; his bad! Keeping your integrity means you have to stand up for it. It really clears the air and if he has integrity he will receive it politely.

The next time he says something that is flirtacious (and trust your intuition on this when it feels that way), take a deep breath and say something like, "You seem like a nice guy, and you probably don't mean it this way, but that makes me feel uncomfortable when you say that, and I don't want to see our relationship go downhill. It seems too flirtacious and informal for our professional relationship. Please don't do it again so that we can keep our good relationship on a steady path."

Be prepared for unintended consequences and decide to be courageous enough to do the right thing anyway and pay whatever the price. Most often it won't go bad, but don't be disappointed in yourself, if you're willing to rightly stand for yourself. Otherwise, he will continue and you will be increasingly uncomfortable. Don't let this take root!

I admire you're stance on this and it says a lot of good things about the kind of person you are.

I'm saying a prayer for your victory in this matter.
friendlyfriend is offline   Reply With Quote
 

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

 

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Nice Boss, Flirtatious Boss, or what? Park Cheating, Flirting, and Jealousy 15 20th March 2015 6:53 AM
Is he hitting on me? crazythoughts General Relationship Discussion 1 15th July 2014 8:14 PM
Is my boss hitting on me? crazythoughts Friends and Lovers 1 14th July 2014 3:20 PM
Seeking second job potential boss knows my current boss pink_sugar Business and Professional Relationships 1 7th May 2014 3:15 PM

 

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:04 AM.

Please note: The suggestions and advice offered on this web site are opinions only and are not to be used in the place of professional psychological counseling or medical advice. If you or someone close to you is currently in crisis or in an emergency situation, contact your local law enforcement agency or emergency number.


Copyright © 1997-2013 LoveShack.org. All Rights Reserved.