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How to tell if he's interested when you're from a different culture and bad with social cues?


Dalia
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Where do I start? I'm a 26-year-old girl, probably somewhere on the autistic spectrum though I never got a professional assessment, only through a school psychologist - some years ago. I mention this as it's most likely the reason why I'm bad at understanding subtle cues and body language - and the reason why I'm asking odd questions here, I guess. I'm currently studying at university and working part time at a company, no strings attached. I've found some friends there at the company, we often meet up on the weekends. I also have some friends outside work, but life happens, people move away, some already have kids, some have demanding study courses or/and careers. Anyway. Last week, a new guy started working at the company. He's also an university student (different university though), so the job isn't his main focus in life. He came to me to ask for some help scanning documents and we started some small talk. Half an hour he came to my office again, asking for further help. We talked more and he was charming, complimented me, called me his favourite teacher and said how he's so fortunate to have me. It felt flirty to me, so I played along, flirted a bit - and so did he. He came to me two more times asking for help with the scanner. I highly doubt it was actually about the scanner because he kept asking the exact same things and grinningly mumbled something about how he must have a bad memory. Later, asked me to come to his office because he wanted me to show him something, and when I was reading and explaining, he asked me to come closer. He also wanted to know my working hours so that he knows exactly when I'm around. As we don't work in the same department and I usually have nothing to do with the team he's member of, it seemed a bit suspicious to me. When I showed him around, he pointed out that he didn't know there's a second kitchen in the office and that he's going to switch to the second one because it's closer to me.

 

Now, to further complicate things - he's from a different culture (North Africa), so I'm not sure if he's just a friendly person and I'm mistaking it for him being flirty because I see things from another perspective. He also stood very close to me, but I know that the idea of personal space varies in different countries - and individual preferences vary as well.

Do you have any advice for me on how to proceed if I want to properly understand his intentions? I know people generally advise against dating at the workplace, but it's most likely a temporary workplace for both of us and the company doesn't seem to mind. I would be interested in getting to know him better for sure, but wouldn't want him to feel uncomfortable in case there's a misunderstanding. Please help me out! 

 

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Nobody is that friendly no matter the culture. We men sometimes like to invent the reason to be around the girl we like. His insistance to be around you, and his reasons, it does indicate that he probably likes you.

You dont know much about him. So maybe calling him for coffee after work wouldnt be a bad idea. And see how it progresses from there.

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3 hours ago, Dalia said:

... he kept asking the exact same things and grinningly mumbled something about how he must have a bad memory. ...wanted me to show him something, and ... asked me to come closer. He also wanted to know my working hours so that he knows exactly when I'm around.

Well, there's nothing here ^^^ that's professional, so you get to decide whether you like this behavior, or not.

 

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1 hour ago, Wiseman2 said:

What do you mean by "proceed"? Do you have a crush on him or are you hoping he has a crush on you?

A bit of both, really. I'm interested in getting to know him, and I hope he has a crush on me, it feels like he does, but maybe I'm just not used to this level of kindness and closeness. I would like to know what to do in order to figure it out. Given how confident he seems, maybe I'll just be patient and continue to play along? Preferably not at work though, the office was almost empty and yet a few people turned their heads.

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4 minutes ago, Dalia said:

 I hope he has a crush on me, 

You already know him as a coworker. 

He may not want messy workplace romances.

Have you considered getting a good profile and pics on quality dating apps and starting to talk to and meet single clearly interested men?

No one can read his mind. It's unclear if you want to date him or just imagine he is into you.

There's nothing to proceed further with. Enjoy a nice workplace friendship and date outside of work.

 

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