Dating in the Workplace

In general, I think that dating in the workplace is a bad idea. A very bad idea. That’s not to say I haven’t done it – I have. But I haven’t done it in over ten years now. Because when things go bad, they can go really bad.

Where I work, there are many, many couples. Just within my department, I can count 12 people off the top of my head who are married to or dating someone else within the company.

I’ve used the “I don’t date people I work with” excuse multiple times in the past. It’s a handy excuse, especially for when you simply are not interested in the person. Earlier this year, I found out this very, very sweet man I work with was interested in me. He’s a very nice guy, and he’s not unattractive, but I was simply not interested. I kept giving my “I don’t date people I work with” excuse. He was nice and understood.

Recently, I’ve started getting to know this other guy. We kept running into each other in the hall, and he kept looking at me like he knew me, and we would exchange pleasantries. Then, a couple of weeks ago, he emailed me (I had left a note on the soda machine that it ate my money, and he was commenting on that), and we’ve been emailing each other about once a day since then, just random chit chat, getting to know each other.

I don’t know if he’s flirting or just being friendly. I asked one of my coworkers about it, and she said he’s just really nice and is just being friendly. I had another coworker read a couple of the emails, and she thinks he’s flirting.

The other day, he said that maybe we could go grab some lunch one day after he gets back from his business trip next week.


It’s so silly, because if this were a woman, I wouldn’t think twice about it, and neither would anyone else in the company. But because it’s a man, I have to wonder if this is “just coworkers having lunch,” or if it’s a date. And, regardless of what it is, gossip at work would definitely be of the more lascivious version.

All that being said…I could see the possibility of me being interested in this guy. I’m not sure why – he’s totally not my type. But there’s something about him. Some sort of pull, from before I even knew his name, from just those hallway smiles and hellos.

So if this has been him flirting, and if this lunch is more date-like, what am I going to do about it? I still don’t think dating in the workplace is a good idea, even though he and I never deal with each other.

How about this for an idea: I stop f-ing thinking about it and not worry about it until it actually happens, which it very well may not. That’s me, always thinking too far ahead and trying to sort it out in my head before it even happens. What’s the phrase? Borrowing trouble?

What about you – What are your views on workplace relationships? And, any advice on dealing with this guy if he has, in fact, been flirting?

Blog post in Haiku:

Your opinion: 

Dating in the workplace- 

Good idea or bad?

7 responses to “Dating in the Workplace

  1. TheSingleFilez

    I was thinking about this the other day actually. I met with a friend who recently got engaged, to a guy she used to work with. The same guy who 4 years ago she didn’t think she was remotely interested in, let alone think she would marry. She didn’t think he was her type, she didn’t even like his name (us women can be so fussy!). But, he persisted. And thanks to them working together so was able to see what a lovely personality he had, what a sweet funny guy he was… and the rest is history!

    I think this is one of the many problems with online dating. I could see a profile and write it off for not being ‘my type’ but if I worked with a guy I’d have the opportunity to get to know him first.

    I think your situation sounds promising. I mean, you don’t work in close proximity to him right? Meet him for lunch, enjoy it and just see what happens…

    • delightfuleccentric

      See, that’s just it. You always hear about these people who “couldn’t stand each other” when they first met, and you wonder…then how the heck did they get together? It’s because they were forced together, for one reason or another – one reason being work. It gives you the opportunity to get to know more than just the surface.

  2. Funny. I was in a similar situation when I started my current job 10 years ago. I was in my early 30’s, and every Monday AM would come into work and share my dating stories from the weekend with my co-worker in the next cubicle. He would tell me about the wacky women he was dating, I would tell him about my bad dates. We started hanging out – along with a group of other co-workers – every weekend. One weekend he was away traveling, and I missed him. I thought that was weird. Why would I miss him? He’s just a friend and not someone I had thought of in a romantic way. Cut to today, we’ve been married for almost 8 years, have 2 kids, and still work together. Today our offices are one door apart. We don’t work on the same projects but occasionally are in the same meetings, and it’s been great. Sometimes it works. If you have a feeling about this guy, see where it goes. Always go with your gut!

    • delightfuleccentric

      It CAN work. I know it can. But it can also go horribly wrong. But you know what? Statistics of it working versus not working are probably about the same for dating *outside* the workplace. It’s just, in the *outside* world, you can easily avoid that person and not worry too much about hurt feelings!

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting! (And, I do intend on at least listening to my gut, and exploring the possibility. Again, this could all be completely wasted worry, as he could very well be gay and is just interested in where I buy my shoes!

  3. I think it can be good until you break up (if) and then it would be a little awkward to keep running into your ex. but you can’t go through life not doing something because you’re worried that it *might* not work out in the end. i say, don’t overthink it. get to know the guy. see what happens.

    • delightfuleccentric

      You’re right. I know that. The count is 3-0 on this, so I can see where everyone is leaning!! I’m just going to turn off the brain for a little while and let what happens happen. 😉

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