Was she coming on strong, or just being very friendly?


#1

I don’t understand women.

Last night, I attended the first meeting of my parish’s new Stewardship Commision which my pastor asked me to be part of, a Commision which reports to him and has all the powers, if not more, than the Parish Council. I have an inkling which tells me that my pastor volunteered me since I’m a young (27), single male; thus, my counterpart is a young (27), married female (who I will call Eve). The rest of the group represents the older demographic of our parish.

Eve and I have known each other since I went through RCIA back in 2006-07, and we formed a nice acquaintance. I had a crush on her during that time and asked her to come along on a few outings, but once I learned that she was married then I backed off. Over the past three years, we haven’t spoken much, to be honest, only occasionally after Mass, but she’s always been glad to see me. I have always just taken this to be a part of who she is, namely somebody who is very friendly and glad to see everyone.

The Commision met last night at our new leader’s house for an informal dinner and casual conversation so that we could break the ice and make everybody feel comfortable with one another. Eve not only made an effort to sit next to me at the dinner table, but later made a similar effort to sit next to me on the loveseat in the family room. I didn’t infer too much from these at the time. She asked me how I was doing, what I had been up to, and other casual conversation.

Later on, once the actual meeting was adjourned, we were chatting in the kitchen and she comes up, places her hand on my arm, smiles and says, “It’s so good to see you!” I put my arm around her waist, gave her something of a hug, and told her the same – at which point she looks at me and says, “You know, you’re one of my favorite people.” Brief pause. “I think about you alot.”

I’m not sure if I responded, but I’m definitely sure that I looked at her dumbly.
“Really,” she says, “I think about you alot.”

I then changed the subject to her work.

I don’t know what to think or do. My hormones are raging because here is a very attractive, young girl presumably flirting with me quite strongly, but I definitely don’t want us to sin through seeming scandalous, much less do I want her to break her marriage vows! So, I’m thinking, “Maybe she’s just being really friendly; maybe that’s just how she is,” but when I presented this situation to other women, young and older, who I work with, it’s pretty unanimous that she was flirting. The touch. And what married woman says “I think about you alot” to a single guy and not know what she’s saying or what he’ll infer?

As I changed the subject to her work, she then invited me to her workshop. “I’d love for you to come by,” she said.

This is going make *our *work as a Commision very, very difficult.


#2

Stay away from her. Resign from the Commission if necessary to enable you to stay away from her. Tell your priest why if he asks.

At a minimum she lacks good sense. And, at worst, she is deliberately looking to step out on her husband.


#3

Ditto what 1ke sais
I was okay until she put her hand on your arm and said "I think about you a lot"
The best thing is to stay away from her for both your sakes.


#4

We are allowed to go to Mass at other parishes other than those where we live. Consider just changing venues completely to avoid her. By attending Mass at other parishes, that will avoid any “accidental” meetings. No explanations needed. If anyone asks, just say that you are curious and if pressed, say you’ve been really busy and don’t need to explain; just say it with a smile. Avoid at all costs being drawn into a “discussion” about why. Because the discussion will get turned into a manipulation.


#5

Wise advice!


#6

Hmm, I was afraid of this!

It’s just weird. I mean, we don’t know each other that well. We see and speak occassionally. But “I think about you alot”? I was like, “Why??”

I don’t know that she’s having marital troubles. Her and her husband seem happy together. She even mentioned in her introduction about herself that they had talked about kids.

But, yeah, the touch and the “I think about you alot.” Am I a temptation for her?? God, that’d be so weird, only because I don’t see myself as temptation material. :eek:

Maybe I’m overreacting? Maybe I should give her another shot, ya know - show up at one more meeting and see how she acts?


#7

Even if nothing further would happen, it will be difficult to do “the Lord’s work” on this commission with this level of distraction. Your personal life AND the commission’s work would probably be much better served by asking the priest to find a replacement for you.

  • curl

#8

If you run off now and resign from the group, you’ll set yourself a precedent of running from every occasion of imagined sin.
Bear in mind, of course, that you have not sinned at all in being complimented by a beautiful young lady. Nor has she sinned (as far as you know) in thinking of you.
Ask her what she meant by “I think of you”. If it becomes sexual, or outside the bounds of what you regard as faithful behaviour, then you will have to leave, or ask her to leave. And that will be a bloody hard thing to do in the moment.


#9

I agree with 1ke, but I don’t think you need to resign immediately. Definitely don’t put yourself in a situation where you are alone with her, though! And at future meetings, make a concerted effort to sit away from her.


#10

Hello Epistemes,

I would say that I have to agree with everyone else that thinks she was flirting. Some women are like that. It is confusing to men when married women flirt and annoying to other women. There is no reason for it. She could just have easily been friendly, even over friendly, without being flirty. Only she knows her reason, and I think it should remain with her.

No, do not ask her what she meant. That is what she would want you to do–that’s why it is flirting. I would not put too much thought into this as I believe you said it is mostly older people or you two are the youngest on the commission. Perhaps she is not comfortable with them or doesn’t know them as well but I would not encourage her in any way.

If you think you can just shrug off (literally) the “coziness” of all this, then stay on the commission, but be very careful. If it is a problem, then resign. I don’t think it is necessary to change parishes though.


#11

Wow! I mean, wow!

I thought the ladies I work with could’ve been wrong, but to come here, where judgments are typically fairly reserved, and to learn that the ladies I work with weren’t wrong and that Eve was definitely leaning strongly on the flirtatious side is really incredible.

I’ve always thought of her as being so wholesome, so I feel something like betrayed in addition to a little bit angry since I feel as if my emotions have been toyed with.

I’ll try to put it out of mind, though, and just be wary when she’s around – which is a shame, honestly. I hate that I have to act like this around her now.


#12

No woman on the planet would do these things in this sequence unless she was flirting. The repetition of “I think about you a lot” is to make sure you get the message that she is in to you. Stay away from her.


#13

Just a quick question that I think is important.

When she came up to you and put her arm on you and said she thought about you a lot, were there other people standing next to you? In ear shot?

If you were pretty much alone and essentially no one else heard the conversation between the two of you, then yes she most definitely was flirting and you need to be careful. However if there were other people standing next to you and essentially she said that to you in full view and earshot of everyone, then I would be more skeptical and say perhaps she’s just very strange. Most likely she was flirting, but I find it hard to believe a married woman on a parish council type thing would so very obviously flirt with a single man in front of other Catholics.

Just something to think about.


#14

Epi,

I’m going to give you advice now.

At some point in a man’s life he has to make up his mind about how he will respond to women.

She will not be the last married woman to flirt with you, or you desire her. It happens.

The same thing is true when you become married. Beautiful women do not magically stop coming on you, as a matter of fact sometimes they come on stronger.

A man has to decide in advance how he will respond.


#15

No one else could hear, I’m fairly certain of that, since they were involved in their own conversations, but other people were about 12 feet away.

I just can’t believe anything bad about this girl. I really can’t. It’s so hard to accept that she would do something like this, but I myself must admit that I know very little about her or what happens behind closed doors with her husband. I mean, she seems like such a good Catholic…

But everyone I tell says, “She was flirting” and being suggestive. And that really makes me sort of sad for her, more than anything. I’m not worried about myself.


#16

You may be right. Some women are very friendly and “touchy”. These women usually act this way to both men and women however. I think some of these women are attracted to men but they don’t always realize it because for women “sexual attraction” doesn’t necessarily mean sexual arousal.

And that’s the real problem isn’t it? Whether or not this woman is deliberately flirting with you, she’s not someone YOU can work with. And she’s demonstrating a lack of wisdom that could lead both of you into sin. For your own sake you need to get away from her. Sadly, that probably means leaving the commission and it could even mean avoiding the parish.


#17

She’s probably not the first married woman to flirt with you and I doubt she’s going to be the last. If you feel like you are going to fall into sin you should leave, but you should be able to deal with things like this by now. You can’t really afford to find a new job or break off every commitment every time a woman flirts with you. You could have just responded with something like, “Really, I’ve been thinking how beautiful your family is” and then moved on with your job. Why are you letting this get to you?


#18

No, probably not the first, true, but the most blatant, I think. On the one hand I’m flattered because I don’t think of myself as someone who gets flirted with, but I’m also shocked because, as I’ve said, I just can’t imagine her doing something like this…not that she’s a saint, but…it just came from out of seeming nowhere! Flirting is flirting, but I just get the feeling that she was coming on strong…and that just…it doesn’t make sense to me.

Plus, I don’t have an easy time letting most things roll off my shoulders. It will after a while, maybe once I go to the gym today, but right now I’m sort of basking in the compliment while being appalled that it came from someone I considered very wholesome.

:shrug:


#19

I can’t even imagine saying that to another man other than my husband, that I think about you a lot.

She was flirting.

I guess if you think about from the view that what if you had a wife that said that to another man, what would you think?

I wouldn’t quit but I would tell her the next time she says something like that, that she is making you uncomfortable.

Not to be mean but aren’t we suppose to be able to tell our brothers and sisters when they aren’t acting appropriately?


#20

I guess the easiest answer would be, would you feel comfortable telling her husband exactly what you’ve written here? If not, then someone is stepping over the line.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.