Dealing with Co-Workers

  • LostInSpace
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Dealing with Co-Workers was created by LostInSpace

A point of contention between my wife and me is the interaction with female co-workers. I have gotten into trouble in the past with female coworkers and am trying to stay clear of inappropriate conversations and relationships. Despite this there are several woman at work that still call me Honey, Hun, Sweetie, Babe etc.. etc... The women range from young to old, hot to not and everything in between. I personally do not think that they mean anything by it and are just being themselves. My wife is bothered by it and thinks I should be correcting them in some way, politely and without hurting any feelings. Is that even possible? How do you go about telling the nice old lady at work she cant call you Hun anymore? Recently I did a favor for a person at work, she said "thank you" and as she walked away she said "Love ya" or something to that effect. I know some people say things like that without thinking, was this inappropriate on her part. How should I handle that?
6 years 3 weeks ago #77948

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Replied by timeheals on topic Dealing with Co-Workers

Does she work with you and hear this?
I dont see the harm in that unless one of them was one of the women you had your issues with. Now, my husband ws called sweetie by a middle ages sales woman yesterday while we were shoppping and I didnt get offended..its just a term of endearment. Now if she said " Hey sweetie, get your ass over her and give me a kiss" well, ,that I would have an issue with.
Don't be a woman that needs a man. Be a woman a man needs.
6 years 3 weeks ago #77951

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Replied by Gdog22 on topic Dealing with Co-Workers

I was thinking the same Time, so does your wife work with you or something? How does she know women at work call you these names or makes these comments? I’m asking because I’m having a hard time understanding why a wife would be upset if she saw a nice old lady calling her husband “hon”…or maybe that’s just me.

Honestly, I can understand why your wife is uncomfortable with your female coworkers and them calling you these pet names. I think it’s a little inappropriate, but if I’m your wife and I’m not around to hear all that, then why should it bother her? Do you have a history with flirtatious behavior that would make your wife insecure?

Look, if it is truly harmless, then maybe you should just explain to your female co-workers to “tone it down” a bit out of respect for your wife. But don’t be surprised if they think you’re being ridiculous or that your wife is psycho. You on the other hand need to continue staying clear of inappropriate conversations with them as well, that’s like inviting trouble into your life.
6 years 3 weeks ago #77956

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Replied by Betrayed Wife on topic Dealing with Co-Workers

I don't know where you live, but here in the South (U.S.) it's common for women to call people honey and sweetie and things like that. I know a lot of men who call people that. It's colloquial here. Do these women also call other men by these terms, or even other women for that matter? They're not all calling only you those names, are they? It sounds like it's not really a problem. It might be a problem if it was just one woman calling you that, but since they all do it, it's obvious they're not flirting, I think it's innocent. You'd know it if someone was hitting on you.
It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness -- ancient proverb.
6 years 3 weeks ago #77957

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  • Older but wiser
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Replied by Older but wiser on topic Dealing with Co-Workers

Well, out here in the Ozarks this is just how people speak all the time. We had something like this discussion once before on here. Still, in the end, it is your job to make your wife very, very secure and very, very happy, and I can see that this isn't happening, so I can see trouble on the horizon.

I think I would focus on your wife's needs, and I can see that in the past, you have probably been way over the line into some inappropriate behavior....at least, I get that from your saying this:

I have gotten into trouble in the past with female coworkers and am trying to stay clear of inappropriate conversations and relationships.

The problem isn't that she doesn't trust these women. She doesn't trust you, and apparently she thinks that it wouldn't be a reasonable and rational thing to do, trust you, that is. She doesn't trust you because she thinks you aren't trustworthy. What does this mean...inappropriate conversations and relationships...sounds a lot like cheating, bro. So, if you cheated, just say so.

Now, what you two need is a very careful definition of relationship boundaries....what you will and won't do, and what you will and won't tolerate in others, and what will be the appropriate consequence for the violation of those boundaries, one equal to the seriousness of the violation. This is so you both understand the rules and she sees you abiding by those rules WITHOUT EXCEPTION. I would also suggest some marriage counselling for this problem as unlying this is a strong distrust for you. Let her choose the therapist and suggest it, and do what she asks. I get the sense that you are fighting her, and resisting her need for security....not a good idea.

Relationships must have trust to work right. Let's suppose that a successful relationship is like building a home out of bricks, and let's say the bricks are the good memories and the wonderful way you treat each other....makes sense, right? Well, let's say that the mortar that holds these bricks together is TRUST...trust holds it all together, and without that mortar, the bricks just fall to the ground and you can't really build a strong brick home can you? Good memories and good treatment of each other, held together by strong trust...it works.

So, you can see that the problem is your entire relationship, not just this one area. This area is a SYMPTOM of a weak relationship because of no trust. Lack of trust is an agonising thing for her, because what she expected, and deserves, out of a marriage, is absolute security. She has NO security and you'll need to fix that, otherwise, huge problems can result.

We can give you better advice if you actually say what it was that you did, and how she found out, and what happened when she did, and when this happened.

She thinks you don't have good boundaries, or no boundaries, and she is going by what you have done, not by what you have said. So, have a very detailed talk about what you will do when someone, for instance, calls you hon. I think there needs to be some distinction between someone who is say, in their 60's and someone much younger, or someone with whom you went over the line in the past.

If it was me, I would change jobs or take a transfer rather than make my wife unhappy. Remember, happy wife, happy life. Never allow unhappiness in your wife to go on for long. Do what she asks you to. In the end, if you have to ask all these women not to use these terms, I would do that rather than to have my wife be insecure and unhappy.

I think they might be surprised at first, but will understand your desire to make your wife happy, whatever it takes.
6 years 3 weeks ago #77962

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  • LostInSpace
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Replied by LostInSpace on topic Dealing with Co-Workers

Thanks for your insightful comments. You are absolutely correct;
my wife does not trust me around woman at work mainly because of inappropriate interactions and yes I have cheated in the past. There have been many incidents throughout the years so I completely understand why she feels this way but do understand that I am actively trying to work on this. As you pointed out one of my problems is not being able to set the proper boundaries with these woman at work and most of these issues could have been avoided.

Some of you have asked how my wife knows what women say to
me at work, well as part of trust building I agreed to have a spy type program installed on my smartphone which records audio, monitors my calls and internet activity. Let me tell you it’s not easy having your every move monitored but she needs to see that my daily activities are just work related and nothing else. We have talked about me switching jobs but I work for a good company that is good for my career and have I no intentions of leaving at the moment, not in this economy. I mostly try to avoid lengthy conversations at work with other woman but sometimes it’s unavoidable because of my position. I see everyone and know everyone and everyone feels the need to spill their guts to me including the woman. How do I go about telling them not to call me sweetie and names like that even if it’s harmless? To make a correction from my original post, the female co-worker actually said "I love you Bill (not my real name)" as she walked away. I did not hear that part but the recording caught it. I’m no angel and this post does not begin to sum up the things that I have done to wrong my wife but this will have to do for now. Perhaps in another post I will go into more detail.
6 years 1 week ago #78160

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