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When has a woman crossed the line between friendly conversation and flirting?


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My dh has told me several times about a female coworker coming over to his desk to talk with him then staying beyond work related and talking personal about family asking about our kids, what we are doing over the weekend ect. I see her as a snake in the grass after dh and let dh know that she is bordering on flirting with him so he's trying to shake the personal conversations she starts with him and staying clear. What do you call this, flirting, just being friendly? Is it work appropriate for a female to talk personal life with male coworder.. I can see a few extra minutes of hi, how was your weekend? but that's the limit. am I over reacting?

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My dh has told me several times about a female coworker coming over to his desk to talk with him then staying beyond work related and talking personal about family asking about our kids, what we are doing over the weekend ect. I see her as a snake in the grass after dh and let dh know that she is bordering on flirting with him so he's trying to shake the personal conversations she starts with him and staying clear. What do you call this, flirting, just being friendly? Is it work appropriate for a female to talk personal life with male coworder.. I can see a few extra minutes of hi, how was your weekend? but that's the limit. am I over reacting?

 

Nothing that you have said here raises any red flags for me. This doesn't sound like flirting.

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We went through this last year and I way over reacted, but there were other issues with me going on. The very fact he is telling you this says you have nothing to worry about.

 

When I worked, I had male friends I did things with. My fear level increased when I became a sohm. Male/female friendships are common in the workplace these days, and while I see the potential for problems there, most people just look on them as friendships.

 

But the bottom line, if you are uncomfortable with it, something needs to be done. If you have a problem with it, there is a problem. If he is uncomfortable with it, it needs to stop. She may just be very friendly and doesn't get it.

 

I would call it just being friendly, but I wouldn't want it to go any further.

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I think the fact that your dh is telling you about it is reason enough to be wary of her. Your dh has got to give very clear signals to this woman to get her to back off. Any bit of attention or encouragement from your dh could be all she needs to further pursue him. If your dh shuts her down, there'll be nothing to chase after yk? Be careful. :grouphug:

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If your dh mentioned it to you to see what you thought about it, he must have sensed something not quite right w/it. If both of you have concerns then it is wise for him to put up a boundary. That's what I'd want my dh to do in the same situation. Plus, I'd ask if she were pretty. :tongue_smilie:

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Most of the time I think it is the attitude she has rather than what she is saying. If it is a conversation that I witness, I usually intuitively know if a woman is flirting, even if my dh doesn't pick up on it. He listens to me when I tell him to stay clear, though.

 

If these are conversations you haven't witnessed, and her attitude and body language doesn't indicate to your dh that she is flirting, it could be innocent. Having said that, I think it is wise to err on the side of caution.

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When I worked in an office, a number of us would gab about weekend plans, our kids, significant others, etc. We'd go to lunch, sometimes grab a beer after work... it wasn't flirting. It was bonding with the people you spent most of your waking hours with.

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My DH has conversations with female co-workers like this all the time and even goes out to lunch with some of them. To be honest, you can not tell if it was flirtatious unless you were there. Even a question about the copy machine can be flirtatious with the right eye contact and body language. A long, involved conversation about the kids and hobbies might not be flirtatious at all.

A person can put out the signal pretty easily that they are NOT interested in flirtatious conversation. It's just an "aura" or attitude of unavailability, and it's pretty easy to spot. So long as your husband has THAT attitude himself, most flirty girls will just give up, and casual conversations, even though they are personal, can be harmless. JMO.

(by "personal" I mean about one's personal life rather then work. I DON'T mean talking about feelings, relationships etc.

Edited by katemary63
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I think she's just being friendly, and just because she's a woman, does not mean that she's up to anything inappropriate. Maybe she just thinks your dh is a nice guy and she enjoys talking with him. When I was working, I had lots of male friends and had no interest in them as anything more than that.

 

On the other hand, is your dh getting any inclination that she is flirting with him? If he suspects that she's interested in more than a casual friendship, that's something else entirely.

 

I think a lot of women are too quick to judge other women's motivations in a negative, suspicious way. Think about it -- if you worked with some guy and he was friendly, would your dh automatically assume that he was coming on to you, and if he did assume the worst, wouldn't you feel like he was being paranoid and controlling?

 

I'm not saying you're wrong about the woman, or that you shouldn't keep your eyes open; I'm just suggesting that I think you may be judging her motivations too quickly.

 

Cat

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I'm going to be the dissenting voice here and say that she's crossing the line (maybe unknowningly, maybe not). The fact that he is telling you about it is a great thing. Have you met this co-worker? I'd be inclined to show my face there and let this woman know that there is a loving wife :001_smile: I'm not trying to put fear into you, but right now I'm walking with a dear friend who's husband had an affair. This was a godly, upright man. No one is really safe from it. I'm finding out from more and more friends that they have had marital infidelity.

 

Yes, male/female friendships are more common in the workplace now, and this may be totally innocent, but is your marriage worth the chance that it's not?

 

 

My husband works long hours in a restaurant. One of his co workers became very friendly, and she started emailing him when he changed stores(with HER husband's permission). We have ONE email that everyone shares, so I would see her emails, often before he would. They became more and more....ummmm. heading towards intimacy. My husband saw nothing wrong until she sent the last one. The one where she said she wished she could spend her entire birthday with MY HUSBAND. At that point, after discussing it with my husband, **I** emailed her back and told her to back off. Come to find out that someone at the old store had suggested that my husband might be open to having an affair!!!!!!!!!!!:cursing:

 

The point of this long ramble is that you never know what an individual is thinking, nor their motives behind what they do. I would encourage your husband to set some serious boundaries with this coworker.

 

Rita

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Just based on what you have written here, but I know things can be a lot more subtle and complex than comes across in a post on a forum. The fact that she's asking about you and the kids and his weekend plans seems very normal to me.

 

I have worked in close relationships with men. We talked about all kinds of non-professional things, including kids and spouses. I would never have talked about problems in a marriage with male co-workers, but we talked all the time about our kids, their schools, our weekend plans, etc. We worked very very hard, so the work environment wasn't really super social, but when we needed a break from work, we were friends. I'm still friends with my boss. We still email and we still talk about our spouses and children when we do so. I would never consider that there was any flirtation at all in that relationship.

 

DH has a couple of people at work that he is friendly with, and one is a woman. She's single and attractive, but this really doesn't bother me at all. He's not doing things with her outside of work (except that I have invited her for dinner a few times and really enjoy her myself). If she was asking him to stop by her house I would not like that. But chatting at work?

 

DH spends a lot of time with people at work. He is there more than he is home, during the week. He cares about these people. When they have had serious illnesses, I have taken meals. When they have babies, he buys a gift, when they get married, he shows up. This is a close workplace, and I think that's a GOOD thing. If he's going to spend that much time with people, I want them to know that he has children he loves. I want them to believe he cares about them as people. They are an effective team, partly because of the strength of relationships.

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If your dh mentioned it to you to see what you thought about it, he must have sensed something not quite right w/it. If both of you have concerns then it is wise for him to put up a boundary. That's what I'd want my dh to do in the same situation. Plus, I'd ask if she were pretty. :tongue_smilie:

Ditto! :iagree:

While some previous posters have said that since your dh brought it up, you shouldn't be as worried, I agree with Michelle. I don't think he'd have brought it up unless there was something going on either in his mind or hers.

(I'd also be trying to find out, though not outright asking dh, if she's pretty! :tongue_smilie:)

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This one is very tough. My DH would not recognize a woman flirting with him if she sat in his lap (well maybe that). :) The only reason I can see for her to ask about the family is if he brought it up. That being said there were several times that a mixed group of us went to lunch and talked about our families. When you have your kid's soccer picture up those think do come into play. You have planted that seed of caution in your husband's head. That is all you can do at this point.

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As a female in the workplace...I agree with PP that it just depends...

 

We have males and females working here and we are all good friends, chat about our weekends, laugh about the silly things our kids do, etc. None of it ever gets too personal...like I would NEVER talk about a recent argument I had with my dh, etc.

 

We chat, we do NOT "confide" and I think there is a difference. Also, it is a lot about body language and the "feel" of the conversation. Does your husband "feel" like he is being flirted with? If so, the conversation topic is less important than the "vibe" he is getting from her.

 

If there is no flirty vibe and the topics are harmless then she should not be villified just because she is a woman. Not all females in the workplace are out trying to steal someone else's husband. If I did not talk to men at work I would be very isolated indeed as more of my co-workers are male than female.

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My husband would chat with women at work about how the kids are doing, what weekend plans we have etc. Small talk. I would think nothing of it...HOWEVER...my husband is pretty oblivious to most things that a woman would pick up on. So, if he came to me and was telling me this and saying he was uncomfortable, then that would be a HUGE red flag for me. Otherwise, he would not even mention it. I would talk to your husband and ask him how he feels. Did it make him uncomfortable? Did he get a "red flag"? That is what is important. How HE perceived it. Then you will have your answer.

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Does she talk to any others there like this? If she does, then I would say she's just being conversational. Some people like to talk and it doesn't matter who the other person is. If she does not talk to anyone else like this, then I would be concerned. She may not be doing it with the intent to go after him, but it could easily turn into something to worry about if she develops any kind of emotional attachment to him. That is what he would need to nip in the bud. He needs to watch out for her taking it to a personal level on her part, talking about her feelings and problems in her life, asking for advice on personal matters, etc. If that happens, he has to stop it immediately and make it clear that it's TMI (too much information) and that he does not want to be her confidant.

 

It's great that he spoke to you about this. Keep those lines of communication open. Oh, and dropping by sometime could help, and certainly wouldn't hurt.

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I spoke about these things with my former boss and make coworkers. I was the only female amonf 4 of them. This was the job I had when I met my husband. They were there when I met John and when he sent me flowers at work for the first time. I knew about their wives, children, etc. I grieved when Mark's premie twins died. John and I went to my boss's wedding. They all threw us a baby shower before I quit work. They were the best!

 

We talked about so many things. My boss had a room across from the entrance area where my desk was, and we often discussed things he watched on TV, religion, children, our past and so on.

 

But, there wasn't an iota of flirting on either part.

 

I am a firm believer that people know when someone is flirting with them. There is a certain demeanor, a certain spark in the person's eye. I've known it when someone has flirted with me, and my husband has as well. If I sensed there was any, I would have talked less and made it very obvious that I had no interest.

 

I also never dressed in an alluring way. I wore khaki pants or nice jeans with modest shirts or sweaters. I never behaved in an alluring, flirtatious way.

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We tend to err on the side of caution when it comes with that kind of thing. DH has female friends at work, but none of them go beyond chatting about the spouse & kids, weekend plans, stuff in the news, etc. He doesn't go out to lunch alone with them or take walks at lunch or anything like that.

 

With your situation, is she singling him out, or is she like that with other men in the office? Is she staying late to talk to him, or just chatting for a minute on her way out? Is your husband the only one there when it happens? I think as long as he's keeping it casual he's probably fine. If they're alone in the building and she's trying to talk to him about her personal life, that would not be fine with me. :)

 

Shortly after we got married, a friend of ours left his wife and 4 kids for a woman he met at work. I think it's given DH and I a sense of sobriety about our marriage. They were leaders at our church, had a good marriage as far as anyone could tell (including the wife)...no one saw it coming.

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I'm going to be the dissenting voice here and say that she's crossing the line (maybe unknowningly, maybe not). The fact that he is telling you about it is a great thing. Have you met this co-worker? I'd be inclined to show my face there and let this woman know that there is a loving wife :001_smile: I'm not trying to put fear into you, but right now I'm walking with a dear friend who's husband had an affair. This was a godly, upright man. No one is really safe from it. I'm finding out from more and more friends that they have had marital infidelity.

 

Yes, male/female friendships are more common in the workplace now, and this may be totally innocent, but is your marriage worth the chance that it's not?

 

 

My husband works long hours in a restaurant. One of his co workers became very friendly, and she started emailing him when he changed stores(with HER husband's permission). We have ONE email that everyone shares, so I would see her emails, often before he would. They became more and more....ummmm. heading towards intimacy. My husband saw nothing wrong until she sent the last one. The one where she said she wished she could spend her entire birthday with MY HUSBAND. At that point, after discussing it with my husband, **I** emailed her back and told her to back off. Come to find out that someone at the old store had suggested that my husband might be open to having an affair!!!!!!!!!!!:cursing:

 

The point of this long ramble is that you never know what an individual is thinking, nor their motives behind what they do. I would encourage your husband to set some serious boundaries with this coworker.

 

Rita

 

Wow -- there is no way my husband would allow a woman to email him like that. The only women who email him are customers asking for mulch and such. I think the fact that she would email him says something from the start. She would never even have his email address to start with.

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We tend to err on the side of caution when it comes with that kind of thing. DH has female friends at work, but none of them go beyond chatting about the spouse & kids, weekend plans, stuff in the news, etc. He doesn't go out to lunch alone with them or take walks at lunch or anything like that.

 

With your situation, is she singling him out, or is she like that with other men in the office? Is she staying late to talk to him, or just chatting for a minute on her way out? Is your husband the only one there when it happens? I think as long as he's keeping it casual he's probably fine. If they're alone in the building and she's trying to talk to him about her personal life, that would not be fine with me. :)

 

Shortly after we got married, a friend of ours left his wife and 4 kids for a woman he met at work. I think it's given DH and I a sense of sobriety about our marriage. They were leaders at our church, had a good marriage as far as anyone could tell (including the wife)...no one saw it coming.

 

:iagree:

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We tend to err on the side of caution when it comes with that kind of thing. DH has female friends at work, but none of them go beyond chatting about the spouse & kids, weekend plans, stuff in the news, etc. He doesn't go out to lunch alone with them or take walks at lunch or anything like that.

 

With your situation, is she singling him out, or is she like that with other men in the office? Is she staying late to talk to him, or just chatting for a minute on her way out? Is your husband the only one there when it happens? I think as long as he's keeping it casual he's probably fine. If they're alone in the building and she's trying to talk to him about her personal life, that would not be fine with me. :)

 

Shortly after we got married, a friend of ours left his wife and 4 kids for a woman he met at work. I think it's given DH and I a sense of sobriety about our marriage. They were leaders at our church, had a good marriage as far as anyone could tell (including the wife)...no one saw it coming.

 

:iagree:although DH and I would be even more restrained than that.

 

If the woman "stops by" frequently, then she does not have enough work to do. (I did not see anybody mention that obvious point !)

 

I had male friends -- and I mean platonic friends, nothing else -- all of my life, as well as many female friends. Once married, however, everything changes. Behaviour has to become much more guarded. Fortunately, for my final six years in the labour force, DH and I worked at the same company. We knew all of each other's coworkers and friends. It was socially healthy and enjoyable !

 

Wonderful that your dh brought it up for discussion ! Sounds like you have healthy marital communication. Without knowing your dh, I would surmise that this was/is his way of asking you for your opinion and suggestions. Many guys slip into a "heavy" topic sideways, rather than directly, as do many women.

 

P.S. If the woman -- or any other woman -- ever shifts to "personal topic" e-mails, hammer-smash or electrically fry her computer ASAP !

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I'm always amazed at the number of people on these boards who advocate a sort of married couple sexual segregation. I have lots of male friends, I fairly frequently have lunch or coffee with male friends as well as female--both in ministry and just to get together. So much of my work is of the "talking and hanging out and listening to" type. My closest friends do tend to be female (but not always), but I can't even imagine my dh worrying about such things, nor do I worry when he gets together with a female friend. Usually our friends are mutual friends, whether single or part of a couple, and if one of us is busy the other doesn't fear to socialize alone. I have NO interest in romance/sex with anyone but my husband, and I'd be shocked if anyone intimated such a thing.

 

Pondering further, I guess I understand that some people may be so intensely tempted to commit adultery that they have to totally avoid any opportunity to do so. I know that alcoholics avoid alchohol for similar reasons. But a drink isn't a person--I can't see how avoiding people of the opposite gender for a lifetime is a healthy response. I guess my shock is that so MANY people find extramarital sex such a strong temptation, or fear that their spouse does, and arrange their married lives around that fact.

 

Just searching online, I found various studies that estimate anywhere between 20% and 60% of men may have an affair at some time in their marriage (the numbers for women are far fewer). That's quite a range, really. Taking into account that there are some "repeat offenders" out there (they've been married before, have cheated before) raising the statistics, I would surmise that your chances are pretty good of finding fidelity in a 1st marriage with a man who has so far been faithful--or with a man who was faithful in his first marriage. Either way.

 

I love my husband like life. But I'd hate to have to screen my friends, or demand the same of him. OK... I actually went and counted. 74 of my 204 facebook friends are male. Many are colleagues, but I wouldn't be surprised to have an email from any of them.

Edited by Kay in Cal
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It's interesting that my dh and I had a long talk about this very subject yesterday. We've been together a very long time, and he has experienced every kind of work environment there is. He has learned to keep his guard up when he is away from home. He says it is a mindset that a man must make an earnest effort to use when he is away from home. Red flags can be a co-worker sitting casually on his desk corner to ask a work-related question. Those double handshakes with her hand on top of his are another suggestive action. Her getting to close to his 'bubble' as we call it, his personal space being entered. Her giving him ego-building praise on a regular basis, or asking for his opinion and guidance on personal matters. I have unfortunately seen too many dear people be hit between the eyes when work relationships went too far. I have known a few women who actually got a thrill from being able to gain the attention of a married man. While I do not advocate living in fear and being a jealous shrew, I would recommend careful caution and attention to the female influences in your husband's life. Their motives may be pure, but I would never gamble with the chance that they were not. Why don't you go by your husband's office and wisk him away for lunch. Make your loving presence around him well known to this woman. She will get the message that you are 'there'. My dh said that since your husband told you about it, that is admirable, but also a sign that he was concerned about it, and wasn't sure how to respond. He needs to set boundaries right now that will let her, and anyone else, know that he is completely committed to you and he cannot be available to her at her whims. He can avoid eye contact with her, keep his answers brief and not be chatty himself, and under no circumstances should he be left alone with her or any other female at work for his own reputation. Bless your heart, please do not worry. Your hubby loves you but I think he is seeking your help because he values your wisdom and intuition. Your kindness, love, and honesty will build him up so that his guard is up and he can be prepared for anything that might (and hopefully will never) occur. Blessings~

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Let me give you a perspective from the other side. :001_smile:

 

I've always gotten along better with men than women and I've always had closer men friends than women friends. So, if I were at work and chatting with a male coworker I was friends with, it would be nothing more than chat. I could possibly look as if I were trying to start something, but honestly, it would be nothing more than friendly chat. As I've gotten older, I have tried to be more careful to not touch or make any sort of comments that could be construed as flirty or s*xual, for the sake and reputation of everyone involved. Things can be misunderstood, though.

 

If you trust your dh (and he sounds trustworthy, he is telling you about it, after all) then I'd not be consumed with worry. However, maybe the two of you can discuss what lines should be drawn and if the gal violates those, then he can have a plan in place to put a stop to it.

 

And, if she is indeed after your man, flatten her. :001_smile:

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Kay-in-Cal,

 

I'm not surprised to read cautious perspectives. Some of us belong to Christian faith groups which advise married couples to live carefully, for two major reasons. Primary is to honor the one whom we have chosen as life partner. Another reason is because human beings are vulnerable to temptation, which can (I did not say inevitably does, but "can") lead to sin. The other reason is to live carefully in order not to create any temptation for other people to invent gossip. Thus we are not paranoid people, but Christians following the teachings of our particular faith groups.

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Honestly, it wouldn't bother me. Dh used to work in sales, and always had women co-workers. He'd come home and tell me about his day, including conversations he'd had with the women, simply because it was part of his day. And actually, the women especially made a point of swinging by his office, just to hear Tazzie stories.

 

That happened because one day, Wolf had gone for a smoke break right after getting off the phone with me. The ladies he worked with were also out, and one of them was complaining about having a bad day. Wolf snickered, and told them about the conversation he'd just had with me. Tazzie was in the midst of toliet training, and running around the house bare butt...and decided that the carpet in the living room was a good place to poop. Wolf told them that no matter WHAT went wrong at the office, it couldn't possibly be as bad as scrubbing poop out of the carpet. After that, Tazzie stories became sought after, lol!

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As I've gotten older, I have tried to be more careful to not touch or make any sort of comments that could be construed as flirty or s*xual, for the sake and reputation of everyone involved. Things can be misunderstood, though.

 

 

 

Not to pick on you, but I don't understand why one would have to be careful NOT to touch. I never feel inclined to touch a man other than my husband, and I would actually HAVE to make myself say something that could be construed as s*xual.

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Based on what you have said I could easily be this woman. At work I speak with several male co-workers beyond just work related things.

I often go to lunch in groups with men and women (although I don't think I would go with just another man, not only because I would probably be uncomfortable, but also because I don't want others to even have the opportunity to think anything badly). We discuss our spouses, children, pets, homes, tv, movies, etc. I assure you that I am in no way shape or form flirting or have any sort of interest in doing so...

I understand why you would be concerned since we hear about affairs in the workplace all too often - but to assume that just because she talks with him about things outside of work means she is flirting with him is a tad presumptuous.

Also, one thing that I don't think any other poster has mentioned - that should make you feel better IMO... is that a woman who was after a man probably wouldn't bring up his own wife and children. She'd probably be trying to do anything she could do make him 'forget' about his wife and children, speaking about them would be a reminder that "Oh, yeah, I'm a married man with a family". Just my opinion...

Anyways, all of this to say that I don't think you should be concerned, unless your husband flat out said "I think this woman has a thing for me"

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Ditto! :iagree:

While some previous posters have said that since your dh brought it up, you shouldn't be as worried, I agree with Michelle. I don't think he'd have brought it up unless there was something going on either in his mind or hers.

(I'd also be trying to find out, though not outright asking dh, if she's pretty! :tongue_smilie:)

 

:iagree: Ok, I am going to jump on this train as well. The fact that he has brought it to your attention means that it warrants your concern. It can either mean he thinks that she may be flirting with him, or that he is thinking about her more than he thinks he should be. In any case, you need to be CONCERNED.

 

My hubby comes into contact with many different women in his life. He is a traveling consultant. He travels with women, works with them during the day, eats with them (in groups) at night, goes on field trips on various locations (one again in groups). He is also involved in songwriting and the country music industry. He goes to smokey bars and other venues with women, has songwriting sessions with them and so on. ANd finally he is involved in politics that has him interacting with women on a regular basis. I generally know who he is working with on any given projects. Who the major players are and a little about their life, you know married or not, were they live, any life trials they are going through that sort of thing. There are some women he has known in his career for a good 10 years of his life. I know who these women are, where they live, what their current jobs are. I know them by name. When he goes somewhere I know where he is going, who he will be with, what he will be doing, approximately how long he will be gone and how to get ahold of him.

 

Now my hubby is generally oblivious to the other sex. He could not tell you if a woman was flirting with him if his life depended on it. I swear a woman could be walking down the street half naked and he would not even notice. I have seen it happen. I will point someone out with something to the effect of "OMG! do you see her?" and he is always bewildered and has no idea what I am talking about. He has come home from trips and told me of the following weird thing happened to me only to have me explain, that woman was flirting or coming on to you or whatever. So generally speaking I don't worry. A woman would have to be trying really hard to get my hubby attention (don't ask me how I know ;)) and I think I would become aware of the fact way before he did.

 

On the other hand, when my hubby or any man comes home and starts mentioning so-and-so frequently, so-and-so said the cutest thing today, or so-and-so thinks this, or tells me things going on in so-and-so's life, well then I know I have a problem. Either so-and-so is focusing to much attention on my hubby or my hubby is too interested in so-and-so. Regardless of which it is, it is time for concern and maybe even action. And the longer these things go on the more actions they warrant. If you let it go too long, it could reach a point where drastic actions needs to be taken. Trust me, you do not want to be the. Address the issue now.

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Thanks for sharing... the phrase "live carefully" is very interesting, and I haven't heard it before. My first reaction was there is an implication that people of other faiths aren't "careful" or are "reckless" (the closest antonym I could think of). But I would guess that isn't the intent? Does "careful" relate to other sorts of behaviors, such as drinking, dancing, etc? Or just avoiding the opposite sex?

 

I hadn't thought about particular religious teachings. My church is in a very diverse but largely Jewish area, so, for example, I know the guy at the great falafel store on the corner will give me my change without touching my hand. I understand keeping to ancient traditions in this regard... I was more surprised that there were so many more mainstream folks who seemed to live this way.

 

To look at another issue of vulnerablity... my dh doesn't drink. His grandfather was an alcoholic, so he chose at 15 to abstain from alcohol for life. That makes sense to me. But he also has no problems with anyone around him drinking socially. I occasionally will have a beer or glass of wine (occasionally meaning 2-3 times a year). It isn't a temptation for me to drink to excess, so I can have a sip here or there in moderation. But I am responsible for my own choices, not those of others. I can understand not "tempting" anyone actively (obviously flirtation or sexual comments to a married person would be plain wrong), but I simply don't think that simply being female in the presence of men is any kind of temptation to or excuse for sin.

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Not to pick on you, but I don't understand why one would have to be careful NOT to touch. I never feel inclined to touch a man other than my husband, and I would actually HAVE to make myself say something that could be construed as s*xual.

 

I'm talking about a casual gesture touch, not grabbing his arm or something. Haven't you ever had a woman touch your hand or shoulder or something in a conversation? That's what I'm talking about. Some people are more physically demonstrative than others.

 

As far as s*xual comments, in this day and age, almost ANYTHING can be misconstrued.

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I think touching is a cultural/regional thing. Here a hug is a very common greeting between friends of the same or opposite genders, probably more so at church where people feel close. Men hug. Women hug. Men and women hug. When I meet someone for the first time, I have trained myself to do a handshake across our bodies, and only hug if they start it (sort of a "pat on the back" with the other hand). But my instinct is to hug! I also sometimes touch people when speaking with a friend--just like SolaMichella says above. And I very often invite people to hold hands when we pray.

 

Some folks are just naturally touchy-feely.

 

Sexual comments, on the other hand, I'd be hard pressed to think of one. Wink wink, nudge nudge, know what I mean?

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I'm sure that I use other odd-sounding phrases when posting to a diverse group of people, and striving to express a concept without offending others. That drives people to employ all manner of circumlocutions ! All of us here wish to be tactful and gentle. :)

 

I attempted to describe teachings which come from the Church (Orthodox) and from some (but not all) of the Christian groups that people refer to as "denominations" (i.e. Catholic, Methodist, non-denominationalist, Baptist, and so forth). If what I expressed does not apply to members of your faith group, whatever it be, I already stated that could be the case. Neither I nor anyone else would assume that our respective ways apply to someone else. You appeared to be surprised that some adults believe that the office worker under discussion may be acting "out of bounds." I addressed that, in case you were interested. Perhaps I misunderstood your thoughts.

 

The thread topic is narrow -- male/female coworker relationships. As the discussion does not extend to "drinking, dancing, etc.", neither does my post.

 

 

Thanks for sharing... the phrase "live carefully" is very interesting, and I haven't heard it before. My first reaction was there is an implication that people of other faiths aren't "careful" or are "reckless" (the closest antonym I could think of). But I would guess that isn't the intent? Does "careful" relate to other sorts of behaviors, such as drinking, dancing, etc? Or just avoiding the opposite sex?

 

I hadn't thought about particular religious teachings. My church is in a very diverse but largely Jewish area, so, for example, I know the guy at the great falafel store on the corner will give me my change without touching my hand. I understand keeping to ancient traditions in this regard... I was more surprised that there were so many more mainstream folks who seemed to live this way.

 

To look at another issue of vulnerablity... my dh doesn't drink. His grandfather was an alcoholic, so he chose at 15 to abstain from alcohol for life. That makes sense to me. But he also has no problems with anyone around him drinking socially. I occasionally will have a beer or glass of wine (occasionally meaning 2-3 times a year). It isn't a temptation for me to drink to excess, so I can have a sip here or there in moderation. But I am responsible for my own choices, not those of others. I can understand not "tempting" anyone actively (obviously flirtation or sexual comments to a married person would be plain wrong), but I simply don't think that simply being female in the presence of men is any kind of temptation to or excuse for sin.

Edited by Orthodox6
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I know a lot about the people my dh works with. I don't always remember their names...;) But if he says, "You know, Lisa who has 5 horses?" Or 'Joe who has the apple orchard', or 'Suzie whose daughter had Lyme disease...' My dh has been in the same business since grad school, and he travels sometimes a week or more a month. He talks to people, yk?

 

Here's an embarrassing thing...we recently went with him on a trip and he wanted to introduce me to a woman he's known for years. He mentions her name, but not her story, and so I draw a blank. When we walked over to her table, she reached out and hugged me. "I am so happy to finally meet you! I feel I know you! Oh, the kids are so big and beautiful!" etc etc. I was standing there, trying to gush appropriately back, "It is so great to finally meet you" all the while thinking "Who is this again? OMG, he told me...."

 

Later, he was so pleased I finally got to meet her, I couldnt' tell him I couldn't place the name. I asked a few questions and then her story, where she lived, where she got her PhD, her ds' name etc all came flooding back.

 

I guess I am not worried when men and women who work together share their lives. lol

Edited by LibraryLover
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No, thanks for the clarification. I'm not trying to be argumentative... I was just struck by your phrasing and thought perhaps "live carefully" was a term used in your faith. Like I may use the word "class meeting" and not expect anyone without a Methodist background to understand how I'm using the term--I might say "small group" in other settings.

 

I understand not wanting to take on other issues, I simply think in metaphors and congruencies. I look for big picture answers that apply to a variety of systems and enjoy approaching discussions that way. If I believe XYZ, how does that affect ABC and so on...

 

May I ask what Orthodox church you are part of? Or are they all considered one? I know locally of Greek, Armenian, Polish, and Russian Orthodox congregations, but I didn't know if/how they are related.

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I just wanted to add that I do not see anything as you have described it to be of concern. This sounds like perfectly normal behavior in any situation where people interact on a regular basis. My only concern is that your dh has mentioned it to you several times and seems to have concern himself as per my post above.

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[sigh of relief playing in background . . .] Thanks so much for recognizing that I was just sharing information, and that I was not donning boxing gloves !

 

Armenian Christians are non-Chalcedonian, although they sometimes use the word "Orthodox" to describe themselves. Polish Orthodox are rare in the U.S. Those whom I know attend Russian parishes. As for my family, we are just "Orthodox Christian." The faith is the same, no matter what the title. I have spent years in Greek, Russian, and Lebanese Orthodox parishes. So I don't like to "tie myself" to any particular cultural group, when the faith is what really matters ! Differences are only cultural and administrative. We have no "single head" person. For "disclosure purposes", though, currently I am in a parish of the Slavic tradition.

 

 

 

No, thanks for the clarification. I'm not trying to be argumentative... I was just struck by your phrasing and thought perhaps "live carefully" was a term used in your faith. Like I may use the word "class meeting" and not expect anyone without a Methodist background to understand how I'm using the term--I might say "small group" in other settings.

 

May I ask what Orthodox church you are part of? Or are they all considered one? I know locally of Greek, Armenian, Polish, and Russian Orthodox congregations, but I didn't know if/how they are related.

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I just wanted to add that I do not see anything as you have described it to be of concern. This sounds like perfectly normal behavior in any situation where people interact on a regular basis. My only concern is that your dh has mentioned it to you several times and seems to have concern himself as per my post above.
:iagree:
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I don't know. I think a lot of it has to do more with body language than what is said. It could be totally innocent. Maybe she's just a friendly, bubbly person who sees your DH as a work-friend. Maybe she IS flirting, but that's just her personality and she means it innocently. Or, worst-case scenario, she IS flirting with your DH and means it in a not-so-innocent/truly-interested way. I guess the question should be, how does DH feel about it? If he's uncomfortable with it, he should avoid her or say something. From your post, it sounds like he is. I've found myself in situations like this, and I'll go on and on with the person about how wonderfully perfect my DH is, how happy we are together, how he treats me like a princess and is my soul-mate, blah, blah, blah ad nauseum. They generally get the hint pretty quickly! LOL! If she is genuinely flirting in a malicious way, she is going to be looking for something to latch onto topic-wise. Kids are a good topic because she would want to show an interest in the kids. She may be asking about you to see if your husband is going to say anything negative about you. That would be a good opening for someone like that. If he talks mostly about you and how awesome you are in every imaginable way, she will go away if her intentions are less than innocent.

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Lol! No gloves donned here...

 

I only knew about the Polish Orthodox church because my music director (in a Methodist church) was raised in a Polish Orthodox community. She was telling me recently about a service she attended because her aunt asked her to... apparently it's all in Polish and my friend is not a native speaker. I didn't know if it was a cultural distinction or a separate denomination--I don't even know if they meet weekly (we are in L.A., there might be a Polish community I don't know of), or this was a one time thing.

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Our marriage was almost destroyed b/c a friendship my dh developed with a gal he worked with kept getting more & more intimate. It turned into an emotional affair where he began confiding in her rather than me which put distance between us. She began to put thoughts in his head about the state of our marriage when everything had been fine before.

 

It started very innocent & he did tell me about her & their friendship at the beginning. I thought that meant there was nothing to worry about & so I didn't. After a time, he began to keep their friendship & conversations a secret. By the time I realized how far things had gone, inappropraite emails & texts were being exchanged :glare:

 

Looking back, it's amazing how quickly something (or someone) can bring down your marriage. We are very careful about opposite s*x relationships now!!

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Our marriage was almost destroyed b/c a friendship my dh developed with a gal he worked with kept getting more & more intimate. It turned into an emotional affair where he began confiding in her rather than me which put distance between us. She began to put thoughts in his head about the state of our marriage when everything had been fine before.

 

It started very innocent & he did tell me about her & their friendship at the beginning. I thought that meant there was nothing to worry about & so I didn't. After a time, he began to keep their friendship & conversations a secret. By the time I realized how far things had gone, inappropraite emails & texts were being exchanged :glare:

 

Looking back, it's amazing how quickly something (or someone) can bring down your marriage. We are very careful about opposite s*x relationships now!!

I am sorry! :grouphug: I am also thankful you two were able to grow through this and strengthen your relationship even more!

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As some of you may or may not know, I'm a paramedic. I work the standard 24 hr on/48 hour off shift. My current partner is male. We've been together for, umm, 5 years. That equates to 2 pregnancies/nursing/pumping on my end and 3 miscarriages for he and his wife on his end.

 

We're together 24 hours...and I do mean together. We work, eat, cuss, play, and occasionally sleep together for the time we're on duty.

 

<go ahead, pick your jaws up off the floor...i'll wait...:D>

 

There are absolutely no romantic feelings AT. ALL. In the least. Period. For either of us. And we do talk about personal things. Why his wife kicked him out of the house for 2 weeks after her last miscarriage. Why my ds7 (almost 8) insists on lying even when he's caught and disciplined. [and if any of you have any solutions, please lay 'em on me...i'm nearly at the end of my tether :)] We'll occasionally e-mail each other off duty -- "hey, bring the kids and dog and meet us at the dog park in g-town tomorrow at 10". In fact, before my dh retired, I spent more continuous time with my partner than I did with my dh and kids.

 

My dh has no problem with any of this. He's obviously met and likes D. and his wife. Although dh can't access my county e-mail account, he reads D's e-mails. I've nothing to hide from him. And, most important, he trusts me. And knows I love him.

 

I guess the point of this is that I could be construed as that woman by a male partner's wife. And it would be utterly false. OP, I don't know how your dh's co-worker acted or what she said, obviously; but, I guess *I* wouldn't necessarily see her actions as anything suspicious. However, I'm one who tends to not understand females and I'm much more comfortable around men. So, I'll fully admit that what might be blindingly obvious to other women would not be so to me.

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I agree with those who say this is normal co-worker talk -- unless you're in a anti-social field like my dh was. (It drove me crazy that he knew nothing about his office mate for years. )

 

Go meet her and watch how she interacts with your dh. Chances are she just likes your dh as a co-worker. Had I been forced to ignore my married, male co-workers in my field, I would have greatly stimied in my job performance, cost the tax payers more money (we frequently had to travel to various job sites, and been miserably isolated at work.

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The other thing I wanted to mention was that men DO have a responsibility in this situation. If your dh feels uncomfortable with her then he should do something about it. You should not HAVE to go "flatten" her. You should not HAVE to go up there and "mark your territory". A grown man should be able to repel the advances of a woman. We should not act like they are poor, helpless creatures that can't control their own impulses. I will NOT "fight" another woman for my husband. I will NOT live in fear and worry wondering if my dh is cheating on me. If she can "get" him, she can have him, because if he can stray that easily than I don't want him.

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