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Thread: Am I overthink?

  1. #1

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    Am I overthink?

    Hi all I need some advice as Iím not sure if Iím over reacting to the following situation, Iíll break it down into points:
    My boyfriend of 12 months is my bosses boss.
    We live separately both with children from previous marriages
    We see each other 3 times per week when we donít have the kids (we live 30 miles apart so difficult to see with kids due to school drop offs)
    I met my bf when he managed me for a time previously.
    My boss is a female 8 years younger than me who is recently married and has no children yet.
    She rings my bf several times a day regarding work issues and most evenings for up to 2 hours (when he has his children).
    She also sends him many texts and WhatsApp messages regarding work and personal matters (including silly joke pictures)
    She books in 4 hour support meetings with him every couple of weeks (90 minutes is standard though I get 60 minutes off her)
    He has very poor boundaries in general so wonít cut calls short or switch off from work which often impacts on our time together.
    He made comments when she first started that he thought she was flirting and kept playing with her blouse.

    So should I be worried? Even if it is platonic is it acceptable for your boyfriend to spend so much time communicating with a colleague out of work time? Tbh Iím feeling very pushed out and find heís often too exhausted after her calls to spend any time talking to me.

    The fact that she is my boss means I have to tread carefully obviously.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Dating someone who's senior to you within the workplace is a risky thing to do, even without your immediate boss being involved. But this situation sounds really messy and inappropriate.

    They both have very poor boundaries; if she's phoning him about legitimate work matters during the day, that's one thing. But most evenings for up to two hours? Where on earth is her husband in all this? Your guy COULD cut short her calls and ask her to keep their correspondence professional, but is choosing not to - despite the fact he thinks she's flirting.

    If you're feeling pushed out and second best, pay attention. I know I've met people who were lovely in many ways, but too committed to other areas of life - work, ex-family, whatever - really to be available for a relationship. And I've made my apologies and left. Even if their interactions are platonic, it's intruding into your relationship in a way which you are clearly finding unacceptable - and that's unlikely to change. There's nothing you can do to stop either him or her, and the fact that you're at the bottom of the pecking order makes you particularly vulnerable.

    Given your personal circumstances, it's taking a great deal of effort on your part to keep this relationship going. It also sounds as though you're getting very little out of it, regardless of cause. If I were you, I'd start to detach; see friends or do other activities, anything which appeals to you so that you're not spending your evenings with someone who's too exhausted to talk to you. No unnecessary dramas, just recognise that this guy is not fulfilling your relationship needs, so make time with other people.

    If you can gain a little distance from the situation, and ensure you're fulfilled in other areas, the question as to whether you should be worried will answer itself.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member itsallgrand's Avatar
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    Your whole relationship is formed on inappropriate boundaries so why would you be surprised he'd behave inappropriately with others?

    Maybe it's time to look for a new job.

  4. #4
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    Unfortunately, I DO think itís inappropriate - but I also think that there isnít anything you can do about it.

    Short of leaving his job, he needs to interact with her if she is his direct report. You canít really be monitoring which interactions are appropriate or inappropriate (not to mention that this would drive you crazy). There is also a certain level of joking/banter/closeness that is common with colleagues. HE is the one that needs to set appropriate boundaries and clearly heís not doing that because - either itís genuinely mostly work-related and youíre just being jealous (unlikely) - or - heís getting something out of it.

    I think that the only thing that you can realistically do is tell him how you feel (in a non-accusatory way) and see if he adjusts.

    In your shoes, I would also start to look for a new job so that you can realistically separate your career life and personal life and distance yourself a bit from this situation.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Your jealousy is unfounded. She also works with him and she's married. Your BF chooses to interact with this coworker this much.
    Originally Posted by Louise40
    My boyfriend of 12 months is my bosses boss. My boss is a female 8 years younger than me who is recently married.

  7. #6
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    First question: does she (your boss) know you are together?

  8. #7
    Bronze Member thisisrichey's Avatar
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    Louise.. you are being a bit hypocritial here. You are asking if it's "appropriate" for a co-worker to communicate so much with another co-worker. hello.. you ARE IN A RELATIONSIHP with a co-worker! Worse yet.. its' somebody that has control and influence over YOUR career.
    This crosses the line on many fronts LEGALLY and I'm pretty sure if HR got wind of this one of you would be fired or you'd be asked to cease the relationship immediately.

    This is a very sticky situation. This qualifies as very sensitive and teetering on potentially sexual harrassment at the work place - whether you and your bf have problems or if th rest of the office gets wind and decides to go to HR (b/c they can claim you are getting unfair advantages or favors or consideration because you are in a relationship with your boss's boss). That your boss seems to be trying to do the same with your bf makes it EVEN WORSE.

    I would seriously think a few times about whether to continue this or not. What happens when you get into a fight, with either of them? How will that play out at work? What if the boss finds out about you and the boss and starts to treat you differently or claim that she's being unfair to by him because he's with you and you and her don't get along (or are in competition for him)?

    A lot of BAD BAD BAD THINGS can result from this. Be very careful about whether you continue, and IF you continue. I would advise that you don't.. VERY STRONGLY!

  9. #8
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    I feel like part of having a significant other is when things go wrong at work one day you want to be able to go home and b**** to them about whatís going on. But with your significant other you canít do that because heís the boss, I mean, can you? Like you canít really complain about your boss to him because then he might think differently/unfairly of her.

    And you canít really be upset about him talking to her too much because he already inappropriately got together with you when you were one of his underlings.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member Annia's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DaisyMayPorter
    I feel like part of having a significant other is when things go wrong at work one day you want to be able to go home and b**** to them about whatís going on. But with your significant other you canít do that because heís the boss, I mean, can you? Like you canít really complain about your boss to him because then he might think differently/unfairly of her.

    And you canít really be upset about him talking to her too much because he already inappropriately got together with you when you were one of his underlings.
    And she can't (or shouldn't) b*** about other colleagues or anything bad at work because he's the boss. And maybe other colleagues or this boss can resent her and think she's getting preferential treatment for dating the boss. This is if they're dating out in the open and not in secret. Dating bosses is always a big mess.

  11. #10
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    I guess the answer is your boyfriend is spending too much time talking to your boss, but what are you going to do about it?

    Does your boss know about you and her boss? And do you think she's calling him at night on purpose to interfere with your relationship? That would be a bigger mess.


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