A man at my parish has a crush on me - how do I handle it?

The guy probably has no idea he is offending you. Some people flirt just to let others know they are likeable and attractive in general. Most of the guys I know who make comments like you’re describing do the same thing to half the women in the parish, and to all of those over the age of 70.

If you let him know that he is mistaken about what kind of behavior you like, that will probably do it. If it does not, you can be a bit more direct. If it takes a 2x4, though, it takes a 2x4. Men have no right to make personal comments towards other men’s wives. “Nice” is not a carte blanche.

Direct honest communication is not hurtful. Just graciously let him know your thoughts. The chances are that he’s only trying to be kind, and does not realize he has crossed over into making you uncomfortable. Give him the benefit of the doubt until he proves otherwise.

“If I were single, I’m sure God would be steering me right toward the husband I have, Bob. Keep on looking; he’ll find someone for you, too.”

“Bob, I know you didn’t know this, but I don’t like pet names like “darling”, except from my husband, OK? I know people use them all the time, but I don’t like them. And unless I have tissue paper dragging from my heel or baby food on my forehead, I would rather that only my husband comment on my looks, OK? It is just something I do for my marriage, it is kind of unusual these days, but I feel quite strongly about it. It is not up for discussion.”

Then there is the more direct: “Well, as it turns out, I’m not single. Ninth commandment, Bob. Keep moving along, or I’ll ask Fr. Mike to tell you himself cut it out with me. I’m getting tired of this.” (The 2x4 is actually asking your pastor to tell the guy to cut it out. You should not have to go to another Mass to avoid this kind of thing.)

As for the e-mails, you can block him. That might be the best way to go.

I only see this guy once in a blue moon. I go to the 9:15 mass when I’m teaching the Children’s Liturgy, so I rarely see him. I went for almost a year without seeing him and now that I do again, it’s maybe once a month (when I am teaching).

He stands right at the centre door so he sees everyone walking in. The option I would have is to enter in the wheelchair access door.

I should also add that he’s Hungarian (living here for maybe 5 years), so his ideas of what’s ok and what’s not may be different due to cultural differences?

I love you Easter Joy! You are always so diplomatic and kind. You never assume the worst of people.

wow! I am happy with my two. No more for me hopefully. I am maxed out in the energy department :smiley:

Good luck!

you should see my fridge :stuck_out_tongue: I do clean it out every two weeks though, so I rarely see mould.

His ideas probably are different. Besides, some women will interpret comments like that differently. Be very gentle the first time you tell him that he’s crossed the line, and that will probably do it.

Having said that, some guys obviously flirt with the 70 and 80 year olds in order to give themselves cover to flirt with anyone they want to flirt with. If you are uncomfortable, trust your intuition. You are the arbiter of your boundaries, and no one has any room to argue with you about it.

If he doesn’t totally repect your boundaries once you are quite certain that he knows them, I would ask your pastor deal with the “cultural difference”. That is not acceptable behavior in an usher.

Well, you have to assume that the worst is possible. That’s OK, as long as you always remember that the best is a possibility, too.

The truth is, if you approach even the people you know for a fact have motives that are the worst with the assumption that their motives are the best, they will very often react in a way that is sort of “anti-defensive”. Many times, they are not used to people assuming the best of them! They rise to the assumption that someone sees them as a person who could have the best motives. It is very interesting, but it works that way a lot of the time.

I have a really hard time setting boundaries. That’s my problem though. I’m always afraid of conflict and I always play the nice guy even when I don’t like it.

If I told my husband about it, I know what he would say. He would tell me to continue to be nice to this guy, but if he says something to me that makes me feel uncomfortable, to tell this guy nicely.

My husband likes this guy also.

hmmm interesting. can you please give me a real life example? i love your wisdom.

We’ll take all the blessings the Lord will give us! I’m not saying that I’m full of energy, but full of love.

that’s beautiful!!! your babies are lucky to have you as their mommy :slight_smile:

So not only have you been continuing it for two years, you’re also keeping it a secret from your husband.

why don’t you just go away :smiley:

my husband knows you dozo…he told my husband himself. I don’t keep secrets from my husband; I just haven’t asked him for advice YET.

What is up your sleeve anyway? You bitter about life in general???

That’s an interesting assumption, Apollos. What defines “starting it” in your opinion? Smiling at someone? Saying hello? Are we supposed to be inhospitable to everyone because one person may take our intentions the wrong way?

Even just with kids, if they’re messing around and being disruptive, if you ask them to straighten up but start out by saying you realize they had probably had no intention of being disruptive (when they absolutely were gunning for attention), they sort of slump down as if to say, “Wow, yeah, we probably shouldn’t want to disrupt things. On a good day, I do care about how other people feel. I want people to see me as a caring person.” They try to live up to the caring atttitude you just projected onto them.

If you come in with guns blazing and say something like how self-centered can you get, don’t you care about how anyone else feels, then the reaction is different. They get defensive and rationalize that who wants to listen to a nasty person like her? What does she know about me, anyway? You barely turn around, and they’re at it again…living up to what you just got done telling them you thought of them, too.

Do you think you might be reading too much into it?

He might just be friendly.

In that case, though, he would be mortified to find she did not enjoy it but never said anything, don’t you think?

If he is just being friendly, even more reason to have the priest talk to him. It might have more of an impact hearing how uncomfortable his flirting or being friendly is making some of the female parishoners from a male, especially his priest… If another female parishoner that is not so concerned about his feelings misinterprets his intentions, he could be accused of sexual harrassment.

too friendly for me :o

very true!

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