A (not so) simple night with a coworker


#21

I work at a company where if anything like that did happen, I could ask for a transfer to another store.

Tonight, I was contemplating it. Sometimes, just seeing or hearing her is enough to make me think that if I fell more for her, it’d be hard to continue working around her while remaining friends. I actually asked a manager what the nearest store other than the one I’m at would be and he was surprised that I was thinking about transferring. There’s a kind of running joke there that I’d never leave. I made the majority of my friends in my life there and I go there to hangout when I’m not working.

I’m not looking that far ahead in my life yet, as I feel as though I still have a lot of work to do on myself before jumping into another relationship.

May I ask how working with him started out? I assume you guys became friends and enjoyed it until one of you made a move? I have trouble with recognizing the difference between flirting and being friendly, especially with her. A few of my coworkers suggest flat out telling her that I like her. But I know that wouldn’t be the best decision knowing the current situation. Another coworker told me it can go one of three ways: I tell her that I like her and she accepts it, she rejects it, or we remain friends and we still have to work together with some feelings attached to it.

Thanks for your reply.


#22

Hmm. I’d say pray for God to show you His will in this situation; as well as a general prayer to calm your mind and soul. I tend to overthink a lot myself; so my advice is to just breathe, let your thoughts and emotions go away and just enjoy the time you two spend together. If God means for you to be with her; then it’ll happen. I hope this helps. Let me know if you want me to pray for you.


#23

It does have a no dating policy and I believe it’s for good reason. I had a friend who was in a relationship with another coworker and things went south. Then she still had to work with him which would not be the most pleasant of times, for sure. Not only does the drama keep you from doing your job, but you hate going to work and seeing them all the time.

But I know some people meet at work and things develop.

I know people fall in love for a variety of reasons. While I admit that I am lonely, I’ve found it best to have a friend in her for now. If anything stronger develops with it though, I will certainly contemplate finding another job because I’d hate for her to lose a job or anything over my feelings for her.

Thanks for replying.


#24

Eh, my job seems to be strict with it. With management and employees for sure. But I hear they can fire both of us if they find out we’re dating. Again, for good reason. One of my managers though kept his relationship under-wraps for a year before his last job found out.

But at the same time, they’ve joked about me dating another coworker because they recognized some of our mannerisms and such were the same and they knew that I am trying to move on from my last one.

Proximity to a person has a definite impact for sure. I think this is more of a factor than anything considering my last relationship was long distance and we only met twice in 5 years. The idea of actually going to a movie or seeing her in person is indeed a contributing factor to the idea of a relationship with her.


#25

I seem to have a bit of a problem knowing what my will in and what His will is. I remember praying for my ex during a rough patch. I asked Him to let her be happy. The next day, she agreed to date me. So, I thought that was His will. To continue the relationship. But in the end, I needed to not be okay with crying all the time over her. I thought love was too patient and too kind to the point where I’d bend over backwards and take any blows she dealt.

I remember writing a few things awhile back that come to mind here:

‘Beat me until I’m black and blue, I’ll never stop loving you’ But why should you beat me in the first place?

‘Why wouldn’t you want someone who cries all the time over you?’ But why would I want someone who makes me cry?

With this though, I said a prayer that was simply, ‘I’m going to let whatever You want happen and not question it.’ And it ended up in me taking a chance, going along for a ride, and not worrying about being happy, just being happy and enjoying the moment for what it was.

It still feels like a dream.

But I admit and it causes some apprehension, that being with my ex in person felt like the same way, like I didn’t worry about anything, we just were in the moment. So that aspect scares me a bit. But this feels like a more sure thing. If not to just be friends.

I know when I go into something, I tend to give it my all. And I recognize that can be bad at times. I gave it my all with my last relationship or what I thought was my all. People around me have told me I did too much with it. But in the moment, it felt like we were stronger than everyone telling us that we were bad for each other.

So with this, I’m just going to approach it with caution and try to relax. To try to not let it be more my will of wanting something to happen than His.


#26

You like her a lot, it’s obvious. From your posts I think what’s troubling you is not losing your job, or displeasing God, but if she likes you back just as much? The only way to find out is to date her. You think a lot about the situation because it’s actually about her you’re thinking about. My guess is that you don’t want to admit you think so much about her so instead you analyze everything else. If you can transfer and start dating her just do it. I think hiding from others will not make things interesting, it will be a useless stress when you two should be enjoying yourselves. And about her conversion … you never know. But if you push it now in the beginning she won’t like it. Keep religion a bit mysterious and maybe she’ll get curious. Us women are too curious that is fact.


#27

Mary,

I do like her. But I also recognize the very real possibility of religion being an issue. I know she grew up with religion but like many young people, she feels compelled to rebel. She feels like she needs an identity. I do admit, I like how she approaches things, though. My mom and friends tell me that I over-analyze everything and that I need to live in some ‘grey’.

We had a talk about this and she recommended doing something out of my comfort zone. Let me tell you, taking a car ride with her was DEFINITELY out of my comfort zone. But it was one of my better experiences of my life.

She talks about religion at times and I know she doesn’t like people pushing things on her. This gives me doubts and makes me sad at times, because I know that part of me is going to want to try to make her see my view and that might cause a rift between us which is something I don’t want. But in the end, I suppose it’s part of me and she’ll either have to accept it or not. The pessimist in me doesn’t even want to try anything in regards to dating, but my heart often times tells me differently.

I’ve heard it said to preach the Gospel at all times and uses words when necessary. Maybe I should take that approach. After all, if she ends up liking me for me and that’s part of me, then I guess she’ll have to accept it or reject it. But at the same time, trying to relax with it and just being a person liking another person seems to be a good option, too. But then my thinking gets the better of me and tells me that this type of mindset will lead to faking part of who I think I am just to try to remain with her and in turn, I remain stuck simply because I like her and I don’t want to lose her.

Which is why being friends seems like the best option to protect my mind and heart for the moment.

But who knows, maybe I’ll bring it up and it’ll open a dialogue or maybe I can teach her some of my views and explain why I believe what I do.

Thank you for your reply.


#28

Another point of intrigue is a talk I had tonight with a coworker.

At one point, after asking me what I needed and me not saying anything, he told me flat-out that I need a friend.

I started crying and I had to agree with him.

He’s one of the coworker’s that we’re going bowling with (he suggested a group activity to get to know her outside of work as well so that way if she turns it down, it’s not like she’s turning me down specifically). Anyway, this talk led me to realize that I’d rather be her friend than nothing at all.

My brother met his wife at a friend’s get-together and they started to spend more time together. Maybe I should try the same thing.

Like I said, I’m terrible with social cues so I might not be sure when she’s flirting or just friendly. But I guess we’ll see what happens during bowling. I’m going to try not to stress things and just enjoy myself so I can be me.

She told me that I shouldn’t need anyone to make me happy. That I have to be happy by myself first before I expect someone to be with me. I like that about her. She seems to care as a friend would. This makes me think being friends would be best for now. I have friends that have told me that they can only date people they’re friends with beforehand, so I should just relax and enjoy my time being a friend until something (if anything) happens.


#29

God did not leave us wandering around wondering “what is His will???”

He gave us a Church to guide us.

The Church requires people to get permission to marry a non-Catholic. The Church knows that those marriages are fraught with complications.

You need friends. Are you involved with your parish? Are you a member of the Knights of Columbus (a fraternal organization for Catholic men ages 18 and above)? Do you volunteer or attend groups in yours or neighboring parishes?

Do you volunteer for charitable things? Habitat for Humanity? Hospice? Animal Shelter?

Work friends are nice, but, we need to be well rounded. Friends who are companions on the journey to heaven are vital.


#30

I agree. That’s what the Bible was made for as well.

I agree on this point, too. Differing viewpoints would inevitably clash at some point. And i know that I don’t want it to end up like my last relationship with the whole ‘I think I can show you a love greater than what society says that love is.’ While there is merit in that, some people are just going to believe what they believe. You can inform them, but that’s really all you can do. I thought staying with my ex through thick and thin would show her something of what I believed, but it only ended in heartbreak. It’s funny that I still miss her nearly everyday. I don’t miss all the drama, though. So I need to keep moving on.

The majority of my friends are ones I have made at work. My roommate is Orthodox and we discuss a lot about religious topics especially in regards to this budding attraction to my coworker. I love the fact that I could ask him a religious question and we can have a discussion about it in a calm and collected manner. I could usually only do that with my mom or sister. Though my sister has been something of a rebel as well in the past, so she has mixed opinions on things.

I used to be in Youth Group as a kid and went on some mission trips. But no, I haven’t done anything much since I graduated besides work. There’s a Habitat Restore center that is all about helping families get furniture for low-income families. Personally, I don’t think I can do Hospice. My aunt works for Catholic Charities and she has done Hospice related things before. I remember when my Grandma was in Hospice and it was hard seeing the toll it took. She was in Hospice for an unusually long time and we drove up to see her every weekend for the last few years of her life. I recognize how important it was for her to have people around her to take care of her. My sister is a CNA and being around residents who you develop a relationship to and then pass away has at times been hard for her to handle. But, she’s a very loving person and she has that strength. I remember volunteering at nursing home in high school and getting close with some of the people I spent time with and all of the sudden, they passed before I really got to know them. But it was nice to see them smile and enjoy themselves at Bingo, physical therapy, and dinner. The Animal Shelter might be a good option. There’s one close to where I live. I’ve also thought about soup kitchens.

The friends I have now come from a variety of different walks of life. One grew up in the faith, fell away, and now he’s getting back into it. One is a Pastor who left my job, but we correspond through email. There’s a few people in their twenties who are kind of just going through the motions of life but they are kind and good people considering they haven’t had any formal instruction in religion. My roommate is probably one of the best people for me in regards to growing my faith and seeing it in a different way.


#31

My mom tells me that we are all on a faith journey and people have different paths with it. I recognize that society and religion don’t really mix, so it’s very hard sometimes when you want to enjoy someone’s company who says or does things contradictory to a belief you hold, yet you still want to be with them.

I was watching Shark Tank last night. There was someone on it who said something along the lines of, ‘If you hang out with 4 poor people, you’re going to be the 5th. But if you hang out with 3 poor people and 1 rich person, you might be the 5th rich person.’ While I’m not one for monetary wealth, I saw another side to his statement. That the people you choose to be with influence you. So I recognize the importance of being with those who base their lifestyle around what is good.

I also agree with your well-rounded statement. It got me thinking how Jesus would be with Sinners and Saints. How at the Table of Plenty, all are welcome. I can’t help but to think that while some of my friends might not believe everything that I do, there is still a purpose in being there for them. And they, too, have a purpose being in my life. Maybe to share different perspectives or ideas in ways that I am unable to see due to beating myself up with my over-analytic black and white nature. And yeah, there have been times where I have been mad at the concept that ‘people that don’t know and do good can still go to Heaven whereas people that know have to seemingly do so much more in not following this world or living the life it teaches.’ But I think it’s about obedience. If you know in your heart something is wrong, and do it anyway, of course it’s disobedience. Whereas if you don’t know and just ‘do you’ as society says, as long as you’re good, then you’re fine.

Different paths with the same two destinations. Heaven or Hell.


#32

With her, she already does things that I know would make me over-think and analyze everything. And maybe part of me does want to tell her what I think is the right thing. Part of me realizes how happy she makes me, but I know how easily that can lead to complacency. People tell me to go for it, people tell me to just be a friend. People tell me to try to quiet my mind. I’ve been having dreams about her for the past month now. Last night, I had a bad one about her and it led to me waking up with a heartache.

I don’t know where this will lead. I don’t know if my will is trying to over ride God’s. But when I prayed the other night to leave it all in His hands, I enjoyed a moment for the first time in a long time without stressing or overthinking anything. It was the first time in awhile that I felt like it was okay to be happy. I know happiness can lead to complacency as well. But I have to believe in my heart that maybe this past year with the break-up, with my former roommate, with her coming into my life, has all been a growing process for me. It’s led to to believe that while nothing really happens until you make it happen, God provides the opportunity for you to use your God given gifts of Free-Will and Intellect to choose a path.

Like you said, it’s about a journey. Our own Road to Emmaus, if you will. Discovering God in our companions on the walk with us, even if you can’t recognize them at first or if you’re surprised they don’t know about Jesus. You sometimes might not know why people are in your life. And I’m trying to figure out why she is so prevalent in mine right now. And part of me just wants to take a leap of faith. And part of me knows I won’t go anywhere until I start walking. I have been provided with an opportunity that feels like there’s a strong reason that God provided it to me. Walking may be my will. But the path has been laid out by Him.

I apologize for getting so off topic with my response. Thank you for your response and recommendations.


#33

Did you say you only saw your last girlfriend twice in five years? I don’t understand how that relationship was a relationship. Was it mostly texting? How did she view your relationship?

Anyhow, I hope you date this new girl. If you believe that a man can be the spiritual head of the household, that he can lead, you might practice leading this new girl to Christ. If it works, great. If not, there are plenty of Catholic fish in the sea.


#34

Lara,

That’s a loooong story. Basically, we texted and Skyped every day and night for 5 years. In the moment, I guess we both liked knowing that the other person was there. But it ended up causing a lot of unneeded stress since she eventually expected me to be there when she wanted. I continued this because to me at the time, that’s what I saw love as. It got to a point though where she’d ‘break up’ and that same night say she missed me. I too the advice of friends and family eventually and went on a two week break. After 4 days, she told me that I was the one person she could talk to and confide in and I took all that away from her. Up until then, we hadn’t gone more than 2 days without talking. She deleted my phone number and eventually tried to contact me with a simple ‘hey’, but I had no clue what to say or how to approach it. I had already gone through the sadness and such associated with a break-up. The next time she contacted me was months later in the same way, ‘hey.’ Part of my heart is still into her, but people tell me to keep moving on. I know if I spoke to her, there’d just be negativity, bad blood, and a bunch of unresolved issues. I haven’t been on Facebook or Skype in almost 9 months because I’m afraid my heart would want that again. But like I said, I think it’s for the best. To let us live separately. To grow apart as individual people. We leaned on each other so much that it became all I saw and did with my time. I would literally do nothing else but stress about pleasing her and because of that, I lost myself. I’m not sure how she viewed it. It was always her trying to date other people with me just being there. Again, I thought that’s what love was. It was easy as long as I stayed on her good side. Looking back, maybe I was into the relationship more than anything. We talked about religion briefly and she simple said I have my opinion and she had hers. When I’d try to bring an issue up, she’d want to talk about it later which was stressful but at least I had someone to be with and talk to.

I found out that she compared love to Snape and Lily from Harry Potter. How Snape let Lily live her life when he still loved her. How he watched over Harry because of his love for her. But a friend told me that it only led to Snape being miserable and lonely.


#35

Like I said, it’s a loooong story and I could talk about it until the day I die. I’ve written tons about it and when I told her that we should take a break and how I couldn’t be what I was unless I was her boyfriend, how it was me fighting for her, she told me that it wasn’t me fighting for her but rather me making her choose between getting her life together and being with me. She would want to see what I wrote sometimes, but when it got real and I told her how I wrote 100’s of things about her throughout the years regarding the relationship, she didn’t want to read them and didn’t even mention it. I can talk about that relationship forever, but I’m trying to move on and past it. I’m trying to work on me. I have to be okay with not crying 3 times a week over her like I did in the past. I think we both wanted to feel like we mattered to someone so much that we sacrificed ourselves to the point it just fizzled out from stress. I used to think people telling us that it wouldn’t work and us continuing meant our ‘love’ or whatever it was was stronger than anything. But in the end, I couldn’t have a sit-down logical discussion with her about how I felt without her getting angry and me crying about it. And I know I made my mistakes in that relationship as well. But I was focused so much on it that I lost focus on myself.

That’s what I’ve been trying to do. Focus on being happy. That relationship was comfort. Comfort in knowing we’d be there for each other. But it was really stressful and hurt more than anything most times. And I still miss her at times. I’d like to one day contact her and just ask how she has been, but in my heart I know that it will lead to conflict and unneeded emotions.


#36

With this new girl, I have mixed opinions. I know she isn’t really a believer. But at the same time, she’s awesome to hang out with and I love how we can have discussions about things in a reasonable way. She is a lot younger than me which might also lead to conflict. And she doesn’t know about my beliefs yet. I feel for now, it’s best to be her friend. I know how easily my mind attaches to people. I’ve always been one to get infatuated easily and crave the attention for some reason. I also know that I have to know where I stand with my faith and who I am before really pursuing anything and it sometimes feels like a race between figuring out who I am or trying something with her. I didn’t expect to fall for someone so soon, as I was looking forward to working on my own issues, but it happened.

We’re going bowling tomorrow with a few other coworkers. I know that this could be another opportunity for me to see more of who she is and maybe try to get to know her better. I know being with her feels really nice and I can just enjoy my time with her as a friend. I know part of me might want to change into what she wants me to be simply to continue on with her. But I also know that if you enter into a relationship as a fake version of yourself, you’re never going to be. I able to be the real you. This is why, for now, I’m going to try to be a friend and enjoy the time we have.

People have told me the same thing. If it works, great. If not, then it doesn’t work. But part of me enjoys spending time with her. With us as friends, I feel like I have the option of not getting my heart too into something to the point where I fall so hard that getting back up is even harder.


#37

I am still working on my own faith journey and if I can do that better as a friend without risking either of us getting hurt from it, I feel like that’d be for the best. Though I admit, the idea of having someone to actually see and hold and hang out with is really nice. With my last relationship, it got to the point where she asked if I would move there. I had made friends here and I have a really hard time finding lasting friendships for a variety of reasons. In the end, I had to go with the safer bet of knowing that I had friends and family here to support me, when that relationship seemed to be hanging on by a thread for so long. In fact, that’s what helped me move out of my apartment and realize that being a doormat for people isn’t the best thing.

It’s funny though, part of me would still willingly hurt if it meant having her back in my life. But I know I’d just be stuck again. And I know I shouldn’t want to hurt. Break-ups are weird. Because I feel as though she’s still in my heart, yet I’m trying to move on without everything following me into who I become. I learned to bring issues up from it, though. And that nothing changes until you make it. I’ve always been the doormat-y type. I’ve always been okay with a LOT of things. But crying and hurting and being sad all the time is no way to live. It’s my fault for being okay with all that I was, because I wanted to make her happy to keep the relationship going. I recognize that this is a REALLY BIG flaw. Which is why I’m trying to figure out who I am, if not just to be able to not be okay with things in my next relationship to the point where I actually say something if it bugs me.

I’m looking forward to bowling. To having another car ride with this girl. To finding out more of who she is. If not just for not having to think about things as much as I do and just being in the moment.


#38

You say you never expected this like this girl so soon.
This passage comes to mind:
25 In the fourth watch of the night he came towards them, walking on the sea,

26 and when the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. ‘It is a ghost,’ they said, and cried out in fear.

27 But at once Jesus called out to them, saying, ‘Courage! It’s me! Don’t be afraid.’ (Matthew ch. 14)

And you can check up also how many times in the New Testament Jesus says “do not fear” or "do not be afraid."
He told us to come to Him. But imagine you meet Him tomorrow and you know you are supposed to come to Him but you are too afraid on Him. What then?:wink: So I don’t think you overcoming you fears with this girl who isn’t faithful is a Godless matter or one that will pull you under no matter what.
:shamrock:


#39

Hi JustinK,
It sounds like an entanglement is what you had with that other girl, rather than an relationship. And a long-distance entanglement to boot. True love feels a lot easier. You feel like you can be yourself.


#40

Mary,

I imagine I’d be kicking myself for missing out on such a great opportunity, for sure. Fear leaves us stuck and unable to act.

The bowling fell through tonight, but I ended up hanging out with the other person who was going to bowl with us. So, it wasn’t all that bad after all. We ended up having a good discussion about things and that was nice.

He brought up how I don’t seem attracted to this girl because I’m still stuck on my old relationship. And I agree, it’s not fair to this other girl. But one thing that got to me was that she texted him and said ‘Tell Justin I’m sorry.’ It felt nice to hear that from her.

We talked about how she’s just being her, figuring out who she is. And I’m trying to do the same thing. He told me how if anything falls through, I’ll still have a good friend and those are irreplaceable. He told me how maybe we might get to talking and a spark might happen, but not to stress it if it doesn’t.

I’ll just continue to enjoy her company and maybe ask her to hang out just to hang out.

You’re right. I have to not be afraid of what will happen or what won’t.

Thanks for your reply.


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