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ErimusValidus 10-17-2005 04:41 PM

Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Hi all,

I could do with some advice please. I have gradually been falling for a girl at work. The problem is I don't think two people who work together can also go out with one another - it's too much time together. At work we are best friends. We sit two metres apart and talk a lot (face to face and via e-mail), go out at weekends together, and hold each other in very high regard. She has basically turned my life around since joining the office. She has rescued my dwindling social life, restored my faith in girls, and renewed my confidence and self-esteem.

But I have so far resisted the temptation to think of her in a romantic way. Firstly, I would have never considered that she would be interested in me that way. And secondly there's the whole issue of us working together. There is a couple in our office but from what I can tell their relationship is one of convenience and probably based around sex. I don't want that. I think by now I could have had a one night stand with this girl but that would be awful. If something's going to happen then I want it to be something special with the potential to last.

And I think we're on the verge of it. She's recently split up with her boyfriend who she once described to me as a "project" who needed improvement. She was ashamed for me to meet him. Honestly, I don't know if this fool knew he was born. But he didn't bother me. Like I said, while she was with him I was safe. But now she's single again I'm worried she'll jump into bed with the first guy who fancies his chances. And I'll just be there to be the reliable friend to pick up the pieces as usual. I don't want to miss my chance for another two or three months. It hurts too much.

So I guess I would like people's opinions on whether or not I should instigate something. Like I said, we spend a lot of time together. She recently bought us tickets to a dance night (WiLDCHiLD's 3rd Birthday :cool: ) on the 29th and for once it's just the two of us going. I was double booked and almost decided not to go (the other occasion is a wedding!) but I can't miss out on such an opportunity, even if it only turns out to be a cool night between friends. She told me that I was the only person she could imagine going with. She reckons I'm the only guy she knows who's honest with her :rolleyes:

Lately she admitted to me that she used to think I only came out with her because I fancied her. I did fancy her but not as much as I do now and mainly I liked going out with her because she's so much fun. But that comment made me feel guilty that it was true and that I have been hiding my feelings (to myself and her). And this is something that I have been having problems doing lately. Every time we've gone out together in recent weeks we have shared moments of just gazing into each other's eyes and smiling. I haven't done this since I was in love.

It's even started happening at work. And we've also been hugging each other a lot more. The other day we were waiting outside a friend's house and we hugged and we only let go because he turned up in his car with everyone else. I had to try really hard to resist the temptation to kiss her. I'd like to think she did too. We do kiss but only hello/goodbye type kisses. I think she would find it weird if we took it further. She once said she couldn't go out with a colleague. She's also quite cynical of love. I think she knows that I look for love in a relationship and has always been extra resistant towards me because of that.

All I know right now is that I have that feeling in between my belly and my chest that tells me that it's more than a crush. But I don't ever want to spoil our friendship. She's the kind of girl that stays friends with her ex-boyfriends but if things go wrong I don't think we could get them back the way they are now. But then, if she gets a new boyfriend, I'll probably get a lot less attention anyway. I have considered the idea of telling her and finding out if working together is a problem for her. If it is, then I would leave as long as I could be with her. I know that sounds rash but I am an intense kind of guy. Please give me some advice!

Thank you :)[/COLOR][/FONT]

madhatter 10-17-2005 05:12 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
Can't say for everyone,but it didn't work for me. There are husbands and wives who work together,so it can be done.

stacykgb20 10-18-2005 03:27 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
I think you should go for it, because you'll clearly regret it very much if you don't. Unless you are both planning on keeping your current jobs permanently, I wouldn't worry too much about the work part of it for now. The real question is whether she has feelings for you as more than a close friend and whether she is open to the kind of relationship you'd like to pursue. Love is worth taking risks and since you are only friends now and would remain friends even if she doesn't want to be romantically involved (as long as you guys handle things tactfully), what do you really have to lose here? It sounds like you truly care about her and that there is potential here for something special, so my advice would be to find a time where you two can go alone to somewhere quiet and romantic, then ask her how she would feel about dating. If she says the workplace thing is a problem, tell her you would be happy to start looking for another job right away. If she says she doesn't have romantic feelings for you, then assure her that you care about her very much as a friend and will do everything in your power not to let this affect your friendship. But you never know, she could very well be open to dating, and then you would have a chance to build something wonderful with a girl you clearly adore. To me, it seems like the potential upside is definitely worth the risk, and as long as you are willing to take a chance on the potential downside, why not go after what you want? It's usually a lot less regrettable to take a risk and be disappointed than not to try at all and always wonder what might have been. Regardless of what you decide to do, I wish you the very best of luck both at work and in your love life :).

reddoorblack 10-18-2005 05:55 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
This is a really tough one! Some people here have said in the past it's worked out for them but I can tell you from my experience, it was a disaster. I fell in love with and had a serious relationship with a co-worker. It was great while it lasted but was a nightmare when it ended. I would never get involved with a co-worker ever again. We thought we were "different" that all the bad stories you hear could never apply to us, that we would never break up. I guess it can work out but you need to be aware that if it doesn't it makes for a very difficult work environment. Good luck to you.

vintagegirl 10-18-2005 07:32 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
You said that she viewed her last bf as a "project". Then you said that since you have been out with her, YOUR self esteem and various other personality traits have improved. Just make sure that she does not view YOU as her next project.

Secondly, you said that if you did not make a move now, she may jump into bed with the next guy. That's not a good reason to make a move. What leads you to believe that she is that easy, and do you want that in a gf?

If the things above are not an issue, and if your job does not mean that much to you in the long term ( I spoiled the best job I ever had by becoming involved with a coworker) then tell her how you feel now, while she's still single. It will be hard to keep to yourself once she is taken and she will question why you waited to let her know. Most women like men who step up to the plate and view those that don't as wishy-washy.

ErimusValidus 10-18-2005 02:49 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Thanks for replying everyone :)

Can you tell me any more about your experience, [COLOR=Magenta]madhatter[/COLOR]? My main concern is that we have to work [I]physically[/I] close together.

You're absolutely right that I would regret it if I didn't make a move, [COLOR=Magenta]stacykgb20[/COLOR]. But I'm also worried that if I do act, that she won't reciprocate and that things will never be the same again. But I think you're correct that it doesn't have to be the end of the world if I let her know I am interested and it turns out she isn't. I know she doesn't like it when guys pester her because she's told me about times when that's happened. I wouldn't be a pest. If she let me know that nothing's going to happen then I'll move on. So I don't think any major harm would be done. But we might not see so much of each other and that would be upsetting.

It's funny that you mention being together in an intimate situation. I told her earlier that my parents were going away next week and made a passing comment about being lonely on my own at home. And then she suggested that she came 'round one evening to keep me company. I wasn't even angling after it, but it's amazing. So far I have only been to her house and there's always something or someone getting in the way. It will just be the two of us and it will be great to be alone. I might get a better idea of whether or not she is interested in me.

Sometimes I think she is interested in me, but then I start thinking that she just views me as a very good friend. Today, for instance, we decided to go into town together to get ideas of what to wear for this night of clubbing. To me it felt like we were acting like a couple. I wouldn't generally go into Claire's Accessories and try on pink cowboy hats for any other girl :D We're just so comfortable with each other. But I fear that if we put a label on it and try to develop it then outside pressures will spoil it :confused: Many thanks for your advice and good luck wishes :)

Hi [COLOR=Magenta]reddoorblack[/COLOR], thanks for your input. I haven't really considered what could happen something did develop and then go monunmentally wrong. At the moment it doesn't feel like we could ever seriously fall out but that's because there's not very much at stake and there's no real pressure. But I suppose it could happen. It's happened to me before. However, there are some positive aspects to weigh up against this eventuality.

Firstly, I would [I]never[/I] do anything to deliberately hurt her. And secondly, I've learnt from my one and only previous serious relationship not to expect too much at this young age. In an ideal world I wanted to fall in love with one girl and only ever be with her, in every way. But I know now that that was a very naive aspiration. I've had to become thicker skinned and less open with my thoughts and emotions. Basically, if she did something to hurt me then I would suck it up and get on with life. My running would probably benefit!

[COLOR=Magenta]vintagegirl[/COLOR], I think there may be a degree of her wanting to improve me. She teases me, calling me a hypochondriac (check the post count and go figure ;) ). But I know she finds me stylish, generous, caring, funny, and fun to be with. She once said she wished I would grow my hair a bit, so I did. But I agreed anyway - it was just short for the summer. The thing is, this last guy really was a wreck. He had a pyschologist for his depression, he only enjoyed himself with drugs, and apparently didn't clean his teeth. If anything, I think she sometimes worries that I think [I]she[/I] needs to improve.

The next thing is a tougher area for me to talk about. It hurts me if I'm honest. I worry that she'll jump into bed with someone sooner rather than later because she has never tried to hide how many guys she has been with. Back to the ideal world thing, I would find a girl like me who only ever wants to share such intimacy with one guy. But I've fallen for her now and I have to believe that I can show her a good enough time that she stays interested in me only. She must sound like a horrible person, but she's not. She spent a long time in a bad relationship and she had a lot of catching up to do.

I'm not like that and I never will be. I've had one sexual partner and it nearly killed me when she left me because I believed we would be together forever and I knew she left just because she wanted sex with other guys. If it wasn't for the fact that she promised we would always be together then I would never have slept with her. I wish I was like the majority of people, wanting to sleep with as many people as possible, but I am not. I never want to just have sex. I only want to make love and ideally with somebody who is committed to me long term. But like I said before, I've had to adjust my ideals. I would rather risk being upset again than be single any longer.

Lastly, I know I said I would be willing to leave my job, but it would be very difficult. I was incredibly lucky to land this job and I have recently started training as well (on the company's money). It's a big mess, really :( But I am very good at creating these situations which probably means I will end up initiating something next week. At least I won't be at work then because I am having a week at college. So if something does happen then we will both have breathing space and time to think about it.

I know I haven't been very coherent in my replies but I would be very grateful for further advice. I am going to speak to a couple of friends and probably my dad. It's most likely they will all tell me to go for it because it's not them that have to face the possible bad consequences.[/COLOR][/FONT]

stacykgb20 10-18-2005 03:28 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
Good luck, EV--you're clearly an unusually intelligent and thoughtful guy who has given this situation lots of careful consideration, and it seems to me that the potential benefits outweigh the risks. Only you can make that decision for sure, but for what it's worth, it sounds like there is a pretty good chance that she's interested in you as more than a friend the way she's frequently hugging you and invited herself over to your house once she heard your parents would be gone. I was a lot like this girl, from the sound of things, when I was a little younger and closer to your age--I absolutely loved sex, was open and uninhibited about it, and I was eager to experiment with a variety of guys. I often flirty with my male friends and enjoyed casual hookups, but I'd also pursue certain special guys if I thought they'd make good partners...I had two really serious boyfriends before I entered college, and while things were good with them, they were very intense and gratifying. In both cases, we started out as friends and gradually hung out more and more, then started hanging out alone, and fooling around led us to fall in love and have very serious (for that age, anyway) relationships until I broke them off after several years each. It's interesting and somewhat unusual that your attitude toward sex and emotions is in line with what people consider the stereotypically female view and that your girl's attitude is stereotypically male, but I don't think this is all that uncommon nor does it pose a serious problem. It sounds like she is willing and able to be committed and faithful when in a satisfying relationship, and I think you two could be very happy together. It's actually good that one of you is more sexually experienced and aggressive...that should balance out well. With both of my first two serious exes, I was the one with considerably more experience while they were virgins, and I was also the one who took the lead when it came to sexual experimentation while they were considerably more active than me in advancing the emotional aspects of our relationships. In my experience, while some people who are uptight, repressed, or unhappy may judge girls who like sex with different people and don't feel obligated to always be committed to their partners, it's the judgmental people, if anyone, who are actually bad people. If anything, women who are sexually confident and assertive are more upfront and honest than girls who pretend not to have sexual needs just to conform to societal expectations. In any event, I've had quite a few serious boyfriends (and a number of friends with benefits or more casual relationships), and I have yet to come across a guy who wasn't surprised and delighted to be with a woman who enjoyed sex as much as they did and didn't hesitate to take initiative and express her desires.

I think you will be equally happy if things turn out well with your coworker, and I certainly hope they do! I have a feeling you might definitely get a better sense of whether she wants more than friendship when the two of you get to spend that night alone at your house. If she doesn't give you an obvious physical or verbal indication that she's interested in you, I strongly suggest that you bring up the possibility of getting romantically involved in a casual way, putting as little pressure on her as possible. You should then be able to get a clear read on her feelings about that idea, though you must be sure to evaluate her response objectively and dispassionately rather than seeing what you want to see and ignoring signs to the contrary. I definitely think that this sounds promising, and especially since you're so young, you'd be wise to go for it while doing everything you can to guard against any awkwardness between you guys if she were to say no to your advances. Even if she does though, I highly doubt that it will end your friendship or even put a major, lasting strain on it unless you allow that to long as you continue to act normal and friendly around her regardless of whether anything romantic develops, you should be fine. As long as you are prepared for every possible outcome, when it comes to matters of the heart, I think it's always better to take a calculated risk than to sit back passively wishing you had the nerve to act and later regretting your failure to take advantage of a great opportunity with someone you really like. One way or another, if you take a chance on her and handle it tactfully, you shouldn't have anything to lose, as you can still stay friends and coexist peacefully as colleagues. And if things go well, then you have the potential to gain a girlfriend, a lover, and a closer friend all at once, which I bet would make both of you very happy. If you do start a relationship, I have little doubt that she’ll care about you enough and be happy enough with you not to have motivation or reason to stray…if she’s anything like me, she’s perfectly happy being faithful as long as she’s in a fulfilling, committed relationship. And in any event, anyone can end up cheating or betraying you…that’s no reason not to take a risk on someone you really like, especially since she’s probably a wonderful lover who can teach you a great deal about pleasing her and women in general. I think your odds are pretty good and that putting your heart on the line here has a much bigger potential upside than downside, so I hope you go for it and succeed—I certainly wish you the best of luck regardless! :)

ErimusValidus 10-19-2005 09:58 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Wow, [COLOR=Magenta]stacykgb20[/COLOR], thanks again for a lengthy and very thoughtful reply. I really appreciate it :)

Anyway, before I say anything else I just thought I'd update the situation. It's nothing much but a couple of things have been said today that encourage me. Firstly, I was wondering how serious she really was about the whole idea of coming round, and then she said it was a shame I was going to college instead of work because otherwise we could drive in together in the morning. So she obviously expects to stay the night, and I don't have any objections. She then went on to talk about her snoring, saying it would annoy me.

Now, does that mean she expects to share my bed? Given that nobody else will be at home, there won't be a shortage of beds and I haven't planned that. But again, I don't object. This might sound a bit presumptuous of her (if that was what she was implying), but you have to bear in mind we have shared her bed on previous occasions, but only to sleep in. And I guess that is what she was thinking as opposed to anything else. Anyway, we shall see. I'm just really glad that she seems to be looking forward to coming over.

And then later on myself and another colleague were waiting for her so we could go out together for a break. She was dallying around and I said to her, "Are we going out?!" in a jokily annoyed tone. She turned round and reiterated, "Are we going OUT?", to change the meaning of the question as if I was asking her if we were seeing each other, with a cheeky glint in her eye. She does these little sh1t tests to me all the time and I generally fail them. Like I said, I have very little confidence with girls, particularly assertive ones!

Anyway, I have often thought about that reversal of stereotypes. I don't know why I am the way I am. I have a feeling that my dad had an affair when I was very young (I remember my mum being deeply upset about something) so I have a deep sense of loyalty and fidelity. It's a bind. It's not that I dislike sex - I love it too, but only with someone who is fully committed to me. I was speaking to her a while back about the difference between having sex and making love and she agreed that making love is far better, so she does understand where I am coming from. And likewise, I haven't judged her for anything she does in her sex life.

In reference to what you say about making a move, I think if anything is going to happen then it's going to happen physically before we make a conscious decision to take things further. When we've held each other in recent times I have had immense urges to kiss her and I hope and think she might have had too. So when we're alone I think there's a fair chance something could happen; although, we normally have the benefit of alcohol to weaken the barrier of being co-workers. But there's no harm in having a drink on a school night ;)[/COLOR][/FONT]

stacykgb20 10-20-2005 07:28 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
No, there's definitely no harm in having a drink (or a few) on a school night to make things more lively and romantic. The more you say about this girl, the more she reminds me of me...some girls are just naturally flirty and can't help being affectionate, friendly, and suggestive around guys we like. It does sound like she expects and wants you to sleep in the same bed, so while I'd suggest not showing her that you're assuming that, I also would give her a chance to make that happen before you do anything that commits you to sleeping alone. I think you sound like a great guy, and a good match for her, as to some degree opposites attract, and I bet she'd hit it off well with a less aggressive, more subdued and very loyal man like you. Not to brag, but I've always been very lucky in love, especially when it comes to building great relationships with the men I like, and most of the time, things have started off between me and past lovers as physical encounters between friends. Some people think that romance and dating should come before anything sexual, but I just can't help myself when it comes to experiencing a guy who turns me on, and I've never had any such encounters that got in the way of me and my partner developing a mutually respectful, loving, and committed relationship. Like we've discussed on other recent threads, if two people really like each other and are genuinely interested in being together, there's absolutely no need to hold back, play games, try to follow any traditional rules of dating, or be anything less than straightforward and candid about your feelings for each other. It sounds like your coworker understands this well and believes in seizing life by the reins and going after what she wants...luckily for you, it also sounds like what she wants is you! And since she likes you for who you are naturally, your best course of action is to keep being yourself. The people I've known who are always comfortable in their own skin and act naturally are by far the most appealing to the opposite sex and enjoy the most success in snagging whatever partners they want. By contrast, the people I've known who invaribly end up disappointed and lonely when it comes to dating and love almost invariably get nervous about any promising potential relationship. This always seems to result in them trying too hard, which people around them sense as desperation and find to be a big turn-off...the more you can be yourself, the better. Don't be one of those people who wants to seduce someone you like so badly that you act forced and try to do everything exactly how you think people are supposed to act while courting, forgetting that the person you are trying to win over with liked you as you truly are. Those who forget this and let their uncertainty and insecurity show through in their efforts to impress and "play the game" perfectly usually make the mistake of changing their demeanor at a critical juncture (especially by playing hard to get), then wonder why prospective partners who seemed so interested initially are turned off and why they end up feeling unlucky in love and rejected by nearly everyone they set their sights on. You seem very sincere and genuine, so as long as you are honest and upfront with her, don't try too hard or act fake, and find a balance between showing her that you're interested but not being too aggressive, I have a feeling that you will both be very pleasantly surprised by the way your night together turns out. I'm excited for you and hope everything goes great--please keep us posted, OK? Good luck!

ErimusValidus 10-20-2005 03:14 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid][COLOR=Magenta]Stacy[/COLOR], thanks once again for such an insightful and intelligent reply :angel:

Yes, Sara [I might as well use her name - it would be pretty obvious who I am talking about if she creeps up on me and sees what I'm reading at work!] is a flirty and physically affectionate girl. I guess when she comes over, whether we sleep together will depend on how the rest of the evening goes. We plan to watch a film and that will take place on my bed so I guess it will be a natural progression. And I think for now she would be satisfied with just sharing my bed and hugging and kissing. I must sound like a right lamer, but that would be all I want to begin with, especially because there's a lot at stake. When I told my mum she would be coming over, she warned me not to get her pregnant. Oh how well she knows me :rolleyes:

I think (and hope) that you're right that she has suddenly realised what she wants and that it's me, of course! I will definitely be myself. So far it has stood me in good stead. She told me a while back that at first she thought I was too nice and generous not to have a hidden agenda. Well, back then I didn't really think of her in a romantic way - she was growing on me as a friend and I just liked being around her. I think now she respects that - even if I do fancy her now - I have never taken anything for granted or pestered her (which is a theme with her recent love interests). I think she, like me, recognises that we've built a really solid friendship and that it might be worth the risk to develop it further.

Interestingly, she brought up the subject of the other couple in our office as though we were subversively discussing whether or not it was a good idea for [I]us[/I] to go out. The problem is, that couple aren't a shining example; although, we are nothing like them as individuals. Anyway, today went well again. Our colleague invited us out to Fabric nightclub in London on Saturday but we both need to save money for next weekend. But she suggested that we go to the cinema on Friday. At first I thought she just meant to the two of us but I think she means with friends; although, when I asked her who, she said that nobody was really committed. I think she secretly wants it just to be the two of us. I would love it if it was.

I think that's been our problem so far - there are always other people around and it creates an atmosphere that makes is difficult for us to act. At work, obviously, it is difficult to act as more than just friends. When she does flirt with me I just clam up because I worry that our colleagues' tongues will be wagging. And even out of work it's difficult because we always introduce each other the as colleague from work so it feels like we should just act as friends. That said, however, there have been times when I have taken her out with friends and they have assumed she was my girlfriend by the way we act together. So hopefully when we're alone she will get to see a more relaxed side of me and I won't be afraid to respond to her advances.

Basically, I can't wait to see her on her own. And of course I will keep you updated :cool: Although, I feel bad discussing this stuff here. It feels like I am somehow going behind her back :([/COLOR][/FONT]

Ruth6:11 10-20-2005 04:29 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
I apologize if I missed this part of the situation, but from where I sit with life experience the danger is not so much that you work together but that her breakup with the ex-boyfriend was "recent".
Was that recent like weeks? or a month or two?
Being the first relationship after a break up always has risks.

I also have dated guys I worked with - Once when I was 21 for a couple years and then the last time was with a guy I'd worked with for 2 years and we then dated for another 2 1/2 yrs.
Despite the fact that they didn't end up "forever" I can say that I do not regret having had relationships with EITHER of them. In the first case a transfer came up fairly soon after we broke up and I took it. Until that happened we managed to respect each other enough to work together. The hardest part was hearing the rumors of who he was now seeing. The second case was easier, he had left the job while we were still seeing each other.

I understand the big minus to dating a coworker if they are your supervisor or vice versa. That's in most company manuals as being forbidden for good reason.
But we spend alot of our time at work - its natural that we would meet people there.

Oh - and while I didn't meet Mr. Ruth on the job, I met his best friend onthe job who finally got around to introducing us!

If you are aware of the rebound risk or if enough time has passed, I think the two of you should be able to be adult about it if it turns out you don't have as much in common as you think. And if she IS the right person for you it would be a shame to pass on the chance just because you work with her...

ErimusValidus 10-23-2005 05:10 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Hi [COLOR=Magenta]Ruth6:11[/COLOR] :wave: Thanks for your reply! You're correct that her break up was recent. And on Friday night I realised that she has been more affected by it than I originally thought. You see, she is incredibly happy-go-lucky (she's the opposite of me in that respect), so I believed she was okay about breaking up because she said she was. Ultimately it was he that ended things with her but only because he saw it coming. She had asked for my advice on several occasions as to whether or not she should stay with him. It was difficult for me to remain impartial but I tried to be a friend first and foremost in giving my advice which was mainly not to dump him just because he was going through a bit of a downer. But he became too tiresome for her. This was about a month ago.

Well anyway, on Friday night we talked about him. She told me how she had seen him lately and was concerned for him because his paranoia was getting worse. He has an irrational fear that the FBI is tracking his movements (bear in mind we live in the UK). We laughed together at the absurdity of this but both of us understand that we cannot appreciate what goes on in his head. Whilst he was going out with her he stopped taking his medication (for depression and mild schizophrenia, I think) and now he's a bit of a mess. And Sara is a caring girl so naturally she is worried about him and feels partially guilty. So basically she is less over him that I thought. And I felt bad that I hadn't really considered this. But at the same time I know she would tell me if there was something really serious bothering her about it all.

Right, to update the situation again. Firstly, let me start by saying I am in a state of painful confusion. On Friday at work she told me she had bought me a present and was dieing to give it to me. She thought she might give it to me a Christmas present but she said she couldn't wait. So at her house in the evening she gave me this present wrapped up. It was a humorous short story about a hypochondriac :D Like I said, she likes to tease me! What I want to know, though, is does it mean anything that she bought me a present when there was no occasion for it? I suppose she thought it was a very appropriate gift so it could be rationalised as a simple act of friendship. Well, of course, I have been hoping it was more than that.

Later that evening we went to the cinema and bowling alley with another two friends. As always we got along very well as friends but there wasn't much hint of anything else. For instance, she didn't lean on me in the cinema. She was flirty as usual, at one point telling her friend what a good body I have and getting her to prod my abs. All the girls at work as fascinated by this anyway. And afterward when I dropped the other two off I came back initially to use the toilet and ended up talking to her for two hours, during which we talked about her ex. But we also talked about things more pertinent to ourselves. She made herself even more attractive by telling me how much she likes children, something I didn't really realise until then. Like me she is in no rush, but it was good to hear that she likes the idea of having children too. Not because I imagine having children with her, but because it's a sign that we're on the same wavelength.

So eventually we hugged goodbye and I left. And on the way home I cried because it has been such a long time since I have felt this way about a girl. I decided that, regardless of whether or not we become an item, she is fast becoming my best ever friend. I cried because, firstly, I am an emotional person, but secondly, because I am worried that I am going to mess things up by wanting more :( It feels like our friendship has developed to this level because I have been a good listener and not shown any romantic inclination. And now it feels like I am going to let her down by turning round and telling her that I am also physically attracted to her. So I was quite depressed about it all on Saturday. I drove to a football match with my dad and felt numb the whole afternoon (our performance didn't help matters, either!).

But on the way back I decided to open up to my dad. For one thing I think he was honoured that I confided in him. I gave him the general gist of what I have said here, and his instant reaction was "Go for it!". What I realised, though, and what you guys are probably realising, is that my main concern is less about the fact that we work together and more about whether she actually finds me attractive or not. My dad seems to think she must from what I told him. I personally think she [I]might[/I] find me kind of attractive but, as I said to my dad, I have a supreme lack of confidence.

So after getting back from the football and now feeling a bit more upbeat, I headed into town to meet her and some friends. I was waiting at the bar when I felt a tickle on my ribs. I turned round to be greeted by her achingly beautiful smile which seemed slightly tempered by a mournful look in her eyes. People smile with their eyes as well as their mouth and it seems like she is holding back. Paranoia tells me it's because she knows she has attracted me and now she wants me to back off. Well if that's the case then she her other signals are causing confusion. I gave her drink and we went to sit down. She sat on my lap in a cheeky fashion and generally seemed pleased that I had turned up. She told me she wanted to get me drunk.

Later on we went to a club and met another colleague outside, and she didn't take long to ask if we would ever get it together. I don't know if Sara heard her question or my reply but she seemed to dodge it. My reply was a longing "maybe" which I think would have got more of a reaction if she had heard, so I doubt she did. Inside the club we were discussing next weekend, saying how much better it would be! And we danced together, for the first time actually holding one another around the waist and pulling in close. I wanted to kiss her like you wouldn't believe. And I think she knew, but it didn't happen. We brushed our faces and smiled at each other but we didn't cross that line of safety.

Back at her house we chatted again before going to bed. In her sleep, aside from her infamous snoring, she made noises of contentment - that's the only way to describe them; not sexual but just happy sounding; very bizarre - that made me want to hold her so much but I didn't dare. I was in her bed on the pretext of friendship and I didn't want to breach that trust. I was tempted to watch her sleep all night but I think she would have realised. This morning we woke up and watched television together before retrieving my car and heading into town to shop together for our clubbing outfits. The mood was strange; she was quieter than usual. We were still friendly and it felt like were like couple out shopping, but she definitely seemed reserved.

My biggest fear, basically, is that, like I said, she has realised that I am falling for her and now she wants to back track. We did make arrangements to see each other on Thursday when she will come over here. But I was hoping that we might arrange to do something sooner. My heart sank that I wouldn't see her for four days, to be honest. But she did tell me to e-mail her at work whilst I am on my college course. And now I have four days to think about things. Perhaps that was what she was thinking. I get the impression that, if something is happening between us, she, like me, wants things to develop slowly. Well, I shall see on Thursday what happens next. I very much doubt I will tell her my feelings as my dad recommends. What do you guys think? Thanks for reading :)[/COLOR][/FONT]

Destea 10-26-2005 05:54 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
I've been in two work-relationships, one was a year and a half long and we actually still work together now. No weirdness factor, we pretty much drifted away and don't interact too much, thankfully we're in different depeartments.

Currently I'm in the 2nd relationship with a coworker, we've been dating for about 2 and a half years now, and have been living together now for 6 months..

So hey, you never know :)

ErimusValidus 10-27-2005 04:43 PM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
[FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=DarkOrchid]Hi [COLOR=Magenta]Destea[/COLOR], thanks for your reply :) Well, now I [I]do[/I] know. I haven't got the energy to explain it all but she just left (on good terms) after I told her I liked her more than a friend. I didn't get the reaction I was hoping for. I decided I had to tell because I couldn't bottle it up any more and it felt like I was being deceitful with her by hiding it. Of course, now I am beginning to wish I didn't say anything. Her reaction was about as bad as it could be: not surprised or "I knew it", but almost disinterested :( Why am I such a moron?[/COLOR][/FONT]

stacykgb20 10-29-2005 02:39 AM

Re: Falling for my Colleague
Don't feel bad; you're not a moron. Wow, this situation sounds EXACTLY like what I have experienced in the past with several different male friends, who I felt extremely comfortable and affectionate with but ultimately viewed as just friends. I feel bad now thinking of how differently they saw things and how painful it can be when someone you care for doesn't reciprocate your feelings. Anyway, some of my friends who were in your situation weren't able to remain friends with me after they realized I didn't want more to develop, but most did, and I hope you can stay friends with her too especially since you work together. The important thing is that you went for it and put your heart on the line--there's nothing you can do about the way she feels, but know that each time I've been in her shoes, I really appreciated and admired the guys for being so honest and upfront with me. And remember that things wouldn't have turned out differently no matter what, so it's good that you found out now and didn't keep waiting and getting your hopes up even more before finding out how she feels. You should feel good about yourself for going after what you want and taking a risk, because otherwise you could have gone on hoping that she'd be your girlfriend indefinitely without knowing the truth and being able to start moving on. Please don't take this too hard and try to look on the bright side, seeing this as the valuable learning experience that it was...I know it'll be hard for awhile, but ultimately you did the right thing and I'm sure everything will turn out for the best in time. Good luck!

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