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A Romanian dates a co-worker

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  July 30, 2009 10:39 AM

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Good morning. Be sure to read the last of yesterday’s comments -- the letter writer checked in to thank us. I love it when they do that.

Today’s letter is from a Romanian in the South End, which is which she signed her letter “Romanian in the South End.”

Q: Greetings Mere,

I’m new to the country ...

A kind, charming acquaintance recently declared he really likes me and is going out of his way to show me. In short, he has been gentlemanly and perfect. In addition to standing on the outside of the sidewalk, he has treated me to nice dates and sent sweet text messages. Calls, flowers, sweet nothings. Sigh.

This fella recently confessed his feelings for me. I am delighted.

However, I work with him.

Any advice on colleague disclosure protocol when colleagues of a 40+ person firm in a similarly-paying and competitive (basically the same) position?

Basically, is there an acceptable way to inform our bosses if/when we do become an official couple? I really don’t want to mix dating with work. There are other couples (some even married) who work with us, but I'm nervous about the potential for this to negatively affect my career.

I am not sure how I feel about this but I want to see where it could go. How do I proceed gracefully when so delightfully charmed?

Happy to have this question,
Romanian in the South End

A: RITSE, sounds like he's worth the risk, yes?

The classy and professional thing to do is to keep the love out of the office for as long as possible.

You’re probably already friends at work, so no need to shun him while you’re there. But keep it friendly and simple. Assuming your positions are the same (no one's a boss), there’s no need to make a grand disclosure to superiors, especially in the beginning. If you ever feel like your relationship might affect something you do at work, that’s when you disclose.

People often say that you shouldn’t date co-workers because it's miserable if you break-up. They're sort of right. But – what if it goes well? To me, it’s worth the risk. Work is where we Americans spend most of our time. We develop an intimacy with co-workers that naturally leads to romance if two people are willing and single.

My advice is: keep it professional, don’t disclose the relationship to co-workers until you know it’s serious, and don’t tell bosses unless you think it’s relevant to the power structure in your office and the work you do. Talk to your guy and set boundaries together. Check in often to make sure you're both comfortable. And keep your fingers crossed. I hope it works. It's risky business -- but so is dating, in general.

Readers? Is this relationship worth trying? Should she tell her boss? Any human resources folks out there who want to tell us what they think? Will this affect her career? Share advice and work dating stories here. Letters to the right, twits here.

-- Meredith

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82 comments so far...
  1. Dating within your own office, particularly at a relatively small firm, is not a good idea under any circumstances. If you are that powerfully drawn to one another, might I suggest that one of you look for employment elsewhere before beginning a relationship. If neither of you are willing to do that, then I recommend that you not move forward.

    Posted by sanity123 July 30, 09 11:03 AM
  1. Since others in your office have had relationships (some leading to marriage), I say go for it. There will be a ton of negative posts on here but don't let them get to you. People are just jealous :)

    As Meredith said, just keep the lines of communication open!

    Posted by Tricia July 30, 09 11:09 AM
  1. Def. worth the risk!

    Posted by AlbGirl July 30, 09 11:11 AM
  1. The HR policy at my old firm was that for people who were seriously (and openly) dating/engaged/married they were not allowed to work on projects together or within the same business unit, and management was very explicit and strict about this policy. Personally, I would not disclose anything to anyone until it becomes pretty official that you two are seriously dating. Check with your HR person to find out the company’s policy on dating in the workplace - it might not be as formalized at my old firm. Regardless, enjoy the time together and do not let work interfere with your relationship or your relationship with your work.

    Posted by LuLuLemon July 30, 09 11:14 AM
  1. Although it can go terribly wrong, dating in the workplace can work out. I have been with my boyfriend for over 3 years and we met at work. We dated while working at the same company for 2 years. We were professional and handled the situation maturely. We tried to never make work awkward. People at work found out when we decided to move in together and the landlord called our boss (the same woman) to confirm our jobs. It worked out fine. I agree with Meredith, you don't have to disclose it until it is serious. Good luck!

    Posted by Courtney July 30, 09 11:20 AM
  1. The ritsy-bitsy spider
    Climbed up the water spout
    Down came the rain
    And washed the spider out
    Out came the sun
    And dried up all the rain
    And the ritsy-bitsy spider
    Climbed up the spout again

    Posted by Climb July 30, 09 11:20 AM
  1. first, 'HI' to those who sent me Gratias tibi ago!
    Boss says NO to swingers!
    Daph - what's Ritsy ?
    lovebird chirping in the corner, fly away, away!

    Posted by Puja July 30, 09 11:21 AM
  1. Poe,
    ritsy is one who is all about how they look. Glamorous and expensive.
    if that is 'THE CRITERIA' for risky , it could be a deal breaker for few not some.
    oh, the way you keep your finances separate, same with work.
    ' do whatever you need to do to be financially / work-wise
    independent of each other. '
    ' Feeling stuck in a relationship because you can't afford to move out really stinks'!

    Posted by Daphne July 30, 09 11:23 AM
  1. I agree with Meredith...

    I think the key is not to make a bigger deal out of this than it needs to be. Go ahead and date, but keep all obvious signs that you are dating this guy out of the office. People aren't stupid, so they'll probably figure it out anyway. The goal isn't so much to keep a secret, you just want to be professional in the office and not advertise. Since you are peers (not boss and subordinate), there's no ethical problem. Since there are other couples where you work, there isn't a policy forbidding it. (or at least not one that's enforced).

    It's possible that this relationship could lead to complications down the road, if one of you gets promoted, if you have a nasty break-up, or if you get married, etc. But, such is life, and all places of work have their politics, anyway, no matter what you do.

    I wouldn't bring it up to your bosses until you have to, say, if one of you gets promoted and becomes the boss of the other, or if you get engaged or pregnant.

    Posted by two sheds July 30, 09 11:27 AM
  1. I know people who have left the company once there was a policy that you couldn't be married or you couldn't date.Some companies require employees who are dating to sign "love contracts," which document the consensual relationship in an effort to guard against accusations of sexual harassment.
    Gossipy co-workers can make you the black sheep of the office.
    Tricky - At best, you can end up finding your better half. At worst, you may find yourself without with both a lover and a job.

    Posted by good, the bad and the ugly side of love in the workplace July 30, 09 11:28 AM
  1. Don't ask don't tell.

    P.S. As a veteran of office romances, I guarantee everyone will figure it out anyway.

    Posted by Alvin July 30, 09 11:29 AM
  1. Is one of you the Boss here ? Dating one's boss has risks of its own.
    A serious danger of striking up such a relationship is that people may think your next promotion or paycheck bonus was undeserved, raising issues of favoritism.
    If you are the boss, the relationship can easily undermine your credibility with staff and -- if things go terribly awry -- could lead to charges of sexual harassment.

    Posted by Boss or not ? July 30, 09 11:30 AM
  1. Good morning people of the Congregation - it's the Reverend again.

    Let me start off by saying how awesome Romanian people are. My experience is with only a few, but those I have come in contact with are exceptional. Is this racist of me? In any case, let me continue with the morning sermon.

    Today, we once again explore the virtues of inter-office love. Much like the apple to Adam, however, we must observe what temptations arise from being in such a relationship. Surely, if you have a great co-worker who is attractive and is a genuine person, one may experience feelings for them. You all know one or two people in the office that you work in right now that you wouldn't mind being with (save if you weren't in a committed relationship)...but we do rise above our feelings to confront reality - that the probability of a successful interoffice relationship is very low.

    Once again, the Lead Minister Meredith has provided excellent insight, however, I am in the opinion that dating a colleague is a risky proposition, much like Rico not wearing a helmet during his ride. Truly, the office is a rumor mill in any case...some people love to gossip. If you are strong enough to face the colleagues who discuss your dating your significant other and you behind your back, then you are strong enough to continue the relationship. Do not disclose anything until you both are comfortable to do so.

    On another note, let it be known that the LW touched upon a topic from a few days ago.

    "In short, he has been gentlemanly and perfect. In addition to standing on the outside of the sidewalk, he has treated me to nice dates and sent sweet text messages. Calls, flowers, sweet nothings. Sigh."

    The standing on the outside of the sidewalk is a strong trait of the 'gentleman', a rare breed who walks to earth and has been seen as many times as the Loch Ness monster or Bigfoot. Proof is out there!

    And all of the LL congregation says - GOOD LUCK.

    Best wishes,
    The Good Reverend.

    Posted by TheReverendHortonHeat July 30, 09 11:30 AM
  1. Rico is very busy at work today and has no time to get into this. His first feeling is dating a coworker is not a good idea but then again as Rico said before "love has no boundries" so go for it and be careful.

    Yes Rico rode his bike today and if it is still raining will still ride it home...

    Love always,


    Posted by Rico July 30, 09 11:34 AM
  1. It's definitely worth the risk. Many, many happy couples meet at work. I know some who are married now, and I also had a very long-term relationship with someone I met at work. It's a great place to meet someone, because you can at the very least watch their interactions with other people and get a sense of their reputation early on, which is something you cannot get by meeting someone at a bar or through a dating service. It's not uncommon at all.

    However, you do need to proceed with caution to ensure that your love life in no way effects your work life. Take it very slow until you know if you can really trust him to keep your relationship private. You don't want to find out down the line that he's been gossiping to co-workers and revealing things about you or your relationship that would embarrass you in a professional setting. And you want to make sure that he's mature enough to handle it and remain on good working terms with you should the relationship sour.

    Mature adults should be able to handle these types of relationships. Keep your work at work and your private life private. And since it's not management's business what you do in your personal a life, I see no reason to disclose, unless you think there's a strong possibility that one of you could end up in a supervisory role over the other.

    Posted by Rae July 30, 09 11:37 AM
  1. I definitely think you should go for it. But you both need to agree to keep your relationship professional while at work. Work must always come before your relationship while in the office. It is also not appropriate to make your relationship obvious in a work-place setting. Certainly co-workers will have suspicions but you should not confirm them until you both are sure of the seriousness of it.

    At this point, or at any point in the near future, you should not tell your boss. I think in general, managers do not like people working together who are friends/family/dating, it creates a different dynamic in a team that can cause issues. There is no need to disclose this information, in fact I'd suggest you not say anything until you have a ring on your finger.

    The less people you tell the better, because in the event things don't work out, it will be a lot less awkward. Before you begin dating you need to agree that if things do not work out, regardless of hurt feelings or whatever, you need to remain civil and be able to maintain a good working relationship. It isn't easy to do.... so be prepared.

    Posted by Kathleen July 30, 09 11:41 AM
  1. It is never wise to s*#! where you eat... but it sounds worth the risks...

    Posted by toodleskitty July 30, 09 11:42 AM
  1. I think this is a case of putting the proverbial Romanian cart before the Romanian horse. Imagine you’re back in Romania in that cart, barreling down the Carpathian Mountains. Do you feel like perhaps maybe just a little bit you might be in some danger of ending up face first in the Danube?

    I want to quickly dispel your belief that this guy is a perfect gentleman. If he was, he would never have “charmed” you into a position where your job and your job satisfaction could be compromised. Though you sound intelligent and worldly, you are naive about American men in the American office. Nice guys don’t hit on their co-workers, especially a woman new to the country and culture. So before you walk into your boss’s office and confess your Romanian Romance, make really sure this guy is really as straight up as you think he is. If he gets the thumbs up from at least two different sources, I say go for it, go for it slow, and don’t shag on the conference room table. If you find out he’s got a reputation no better than say, Vlad the Impaler, reconsider, please.

    Posted by Sally the Impaler July 30, 09 11:43 AM
  1. The two most important rules in life are: (#1) "Don't poop where you eat" (#2) "Don't date where you work". Often #1 is used as a euphemism for #2, and yest the #2 is an intended Pun also. Yup, sure, go right ahead and date a co-worker, nothing could go wrong. Uh-huh, "GOOD LUCK WITH ALL THAT!!!"...

    Posted by DudeGuyKidDudeGuy666 July 30, 09 11:43 AM
  1. I'm with Meredith here. If you sense that this person is sincere, and that you could have a connection with him that feels genuine, then go for it. From your letter, it seems that he has feelings for you, but it's not clear what your feelings are for him. If you want time to explore how you feel, then go for it. He sounds like a good person, and if he is as gentlemanly as he seems during these initial stages, then he should be equally gentlemanly if things don't work out and you need to be diplomatic around the office.

    Of course, no one can be perfect forever, so if he's being that way now, it's guaranteed that at some point the rose-colored glasses of romance will come off, and you will see him for the imperfect being we all are. As long as you don't work so closely together that you won't have time away from him during the day when you can process the inevitable let down that accompanies the transition from romantic relationship to real relationship, you should be just fine.

    From what you've written, it sounds like you have your wits about you, which is the most important element of the whole scenario, bar none! Best of luck!

    Posted by done that, too! July 30, 09 11:56 AM
  1. Honestly, only the LW can determine whether or not it’s worth trying. Based on the wording of the letter, it sure seems like she does. Be prepared for lots of commentors SHOUTING at you not to do it or citing cliche "rules" of life. There is no way that it's always a "No". Sometimes it works. If you want to and he wants to, then roll the dice.

    In terms of how to go about moving forward with the relationship, it depends on what type of industry you work in. Since it’s a smallish company, regardless of the nature of the work, I would advise one (or both) of you to start looking for new employment NOW. That is assuming that there are other comparable opportunities / competitors that one of you could branch off to. Better now than later, and eventually, you will have to not work together. There are challenges that can be overcome in the short run, but it will always be the 300 pound gorilla in the room. Even if the company allows it, people will be childish and insecure about it and it will put you two under a microscope.

    The ex-Mrs. Hoss and I met at work, became friends, became very good friends, and then started dating casually. We weren’t real upfront about it during the casual dating phase because we wanted to see where it would go. Well, believe me, people will know right away. They will pick up on subtle cues no matter how hard you try to be professional. It’s best to just get it out there and accept the scrutiny but avoid most of the gossip and speculation that would arise by keeping it on the down low.

    When we became serious, we got it out there and cleared it with management. It worked out for a while, but it became obvious to both of us that even though office policy may allow it, office “politics” won’t. She passed on her next promotion and instead, took a job in another department, in another office building of the same company. Both our professional and personal lives were made easier by the change and our relationship flourished. To me, it was worth any and all risks, as well as the hassles of being a “couple” in the workplace.

    Best of luck.

    - Hoss

    Posted by Hoss July 30, 09 11:59 AM
  1. My dad always told me one thing.... you never shi* where you lie. While this seems krass...it's so true.

    Posted by heck no! July 30, 09 12:07 PM
  1. The first thing you should do (once you have both discussed that the relationship is serious) is make sure you are aware of the interoffce dating policy. Most policies strictly state you can not date your boss, or even someone you may indirectly report to. As long as you don't fall under either of those categories, and the workplace policy is okay with it, you should be fine.
    That being said, no matter what the policy is you should keep it OUT of the office for as long as you can. My husband and I worked together for two years before becoming engaged, and we hid it so well up to that point that co-workers were so surprised to find out we had been dating. I definitely recommend keeping your work life and home life separate, it worked very well for us, and I feel people in the office both appreciated and respected us for it.

    Posted by Boston July 30, 09 12:20 PM
  1. Meredith is spot on, in my opinion. My Father-in-law and his wife of over 25 years met at work. If you handle this right it can go well. Good luck!

    Posted by merilisa July 30, 09 12:22 PM
  1. as long as he isn't your boss or you his...go for it. Be happy....life is too short.

    Posted by Deb July 30, 09 12:26 PM
  1. I used to be a staunch believer of not dating within the workplace. At least, until I met my now-wife. To be honest, there were challenging times while we worked together (we dated a litle over a year working in the same place before we both moved on in our careers), but I'm glad I took the chance instead of looking back and wondering what could have been.

    Posted by What If? July 30, 09 12:32 PM
  1. Will it impact your career... depends on what field you are in. If you study the lifecycles of the fleas that live on the backs of the squirrels on Boston Common, it would be harder to find a new job than if you were an admin assistant.

    In this economy, I think it would be extremely foolish of either of you to switch jobs over this right now. What if one of you switched and got laid off? You can do this right now without making a huge deal out of it, and then see where it goes.

    And whatever you do, don't talk about Ceausescu! (I assume you've watched the Seinfeld episode) :-)

    Posted by Lemon July 30, 09 12:32 PM
  1. Follow your heart.
    Do what you feel is right.

    THOSE are the rules of life worth following.

    Posted by EastCoastGirl July 30, 09 12:35 PM
  1. He sounds like a catch! Definitely date him and don't worry about whatever policies exist at work. Just remember how lucky you are to have a good man!

    Posted by Sabs July 30, 09 12:35 PM
  1. Reverend Horton Heat,
    If your going to make up some stupid character to post on here every day, at least make it funny or interesting or angering or enlightening or whatever. Right now your character just plain sucks and you sound like a tool. Think of how bad you must be that I'm calling you out considering all of the other characters on here.

    Posted by sexual chocolate July 30, 09 12:37 PM
  1. A close friend of mine who is in HR at her company fell in love with a coworker and they will be married Labor Day weekend! Life's too short, go for it.

    Posted by boredinboston July 30, 09 12:37 PM
  1. It is definitely possible to have a relationship with your co-worker as long as there are no PDA's or other overt indicators of a relationship. Meredith is right; keep it friendly, professional and subtle from 9-5, then have fun the rest of the time. I met my now-husband at work in 2003; he trained me! We never let it interfere with our work (we were veterinary technicians). We were married in 2005 and are happy as clams. Best of luck to you!

    Posted by camkat July 30, 09 12:40 PM
  1. GO FOR IT! Go for it! Just like others have said, keep it professional. I worked in a law office where 2 attorneys were dating. They never said anything to anyone, BUT, one day a clerk walked into an office and there they were, together. You get my drift. After that, they would take their "lunch" break behind closed doors, then everyone knew. He eventually dumped her and she was mortified, especially since they were both so unprofessional that everyone made jokes. If you date, keep your hands to yourself when you pass in the hallway and keep all office doors open during lunch!!!!. It's okay to date someone at work, after all, when both of you are working long hours, when do you get the time and the space to find others? Enjoy yourself.

    Posted by californiadreamin July 30, 09 12:48 PM
  1. First off, I apologize for yesterday’s insensitivity. My reference/metaphor did not clear the hurdle for appropriateness. The intent was not malicious, but the outcome was unseemly. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

    I’m not sure where I see a definitive piece of evidence that the LW is a woman. We’re in the South End, people. It doesn’t change the answer, but we could be talking about Uncle David and Auntie Jerry…Whatever. Because Mr. /Ms. Comaneci is from Romania, I will speak in a language familiar to the gymnast within: Remember those great Romanian National teams of the mid ‘70s? What do you think was going on with all the huggin’ and tuggin’ and kissin’ with that Bela Karoloyi guy? They all worked together, but they were successful. The guy showed us all how to mix your profession with romance. Years later, he even carried the Strug girl off the mat after she nailed her final vault to win Gold. Nadia…I don’t know what the outcome will be, but I give you a 10.0 for a degree of difficulty: Y…Y…Y…Y.

    Posted by valentino July 30, 09 12:59 PM
  1. If you're happy about it, don't listen to these crass nay sayers with their crude comments. it is possible to date in the workplace and keep it professional. I worked with a couple that eventually got married and they were so low-key some people didn't even know until they were married that they were even together. They were rarely seen together at work, not even sitting together at meetings, etc. I say go for it. There's no need to make a big announcement about it. There may be natural events where you will "come out" later on -- attending an office party together or something like this. Makes good sense to know if there is any office policy about it, though. Good luck!

    Posted by move on July 30, 09 01:04 PM
  1. I would never do it - But good luck to you, you might be the 1 out of 100,000 that all ends well.

    Posted by Been around July 30, 09 01:14 PM
  1. Two interoffice dating stories:

    1. A previous manager of mine was dating and living with the owner of the company (a small firm of about 150 people). Because she was his girlfriend he would clearly treat my manager differently than the managers of the other divisions, put an unfair amount of pressure on her, and even say or ask her to do things that he could never ask another manager to do because it would be considered grossly unprofessional. Then they would take it all home with them. They're relationship was a never-ending day of work. They dated for a little while longer and are no longer together. I stopped working there before their split, but I can't imagine that it was pretty.

    2. I have friends who met at their workplace. There was a VERY strict rule against dating within the company and they both would have been fired on the spot if anyone of the higher ups found out. But they felt strongly for each other and took the risk. They worked together like that for a while and no one ever found out. After a while they have both moved on to other careers (unrelated to the dating situation). They are now married with two beautiful children and are happily in love.

    While these don't describe your situation exactly, it just goes to show that interoffice dating can work as long as you are able to separate your personal and professional relationship.

    Posted by rebs July 30, 09 01:17 PM
  1. I like the letter better, now that I am imagining the LW to be a Flaming South End Guy whom has an accent like an effeminate "Borat". NIIIIIIIICE!!!

    Posted by DudeGuyKidDudeGuy666 July 30, 09 01:19 PM
  1. I met my fiance through work. We were friends for years, and then started dating. Ironically, everyone we worked with knew we should be dating before we did, so it wasn't much of a surprise. We both left for new jobs within 6 months of dating though. It can definitely work if you're both really into each other. If not, I could see how it could have the potential to get awkward. I say go for it-my only regret now is that I don't still work with him. He made going to work that much better. Especially when you can drive in together and meet for lunch!

    Posted by Go For It July 30, 09 01:22 PM
  1. Just out of curiosity, this new fella of yours wouldn't happen to be a 25 year old graduate from Suffolk Law, would he? Is he taking you out for a lot of ice cream?

    Posted by Ruby July 30, 09 01:30 PM
  1. If you are mature enough to handle the relationship at work IF you do break up, then GO FOR IT!

    Posted by Dawn Juan July 30, 09 01:31 PM
  1. Here's your solution: is he good in bed? Well endowed? Handsome? If so, you go for it and let the chips fall where they may. Esp. if he has more money than you do!

    Ow, send him packing (but keep him on the hook for late night booty calls at your whim, not his). You have all the cards, sistah -- you have what he wants!

    Posted by Lance Romance July 30, 09 01:33 PM
  1. Shaiku

    Your feces at work
    Waft through open cubicles
    Climax face unfolds

    Posted by valentino July 30, 09 01:37 PM
  1. I would like to know the route Rico rides to work, the approximate time he’s on the streets and some identifying feature,,, so I know who to wave to.
    Where are you Rico?
    What color helmet and bike are you riding?

    Posted by yeabut-whatever July 30, 09 01:39 PM
  1. I met Mrs. DrK at work and 30 years later, we are still happy together.
    I say do it, as long as you are in similar postitions and one of you is not the others' superior at work.


    Posted by DrK July 30, 09 01:48 PM
  1. I started dating a coworker shortly after beginning my then job. He was a few years older but the same position as I was and we weren't directly working together at the time. I agree with Meredith, communication is KEY. He neglected to tell me it was over, but instead pretended he was super busy at work (as was I at the time, so who was I to call him out on that lie) and didn't have time for me, but still did random acts of kindness in secret so I was very confused. When he finally grew up and told me it was over, and he had decided that weeks earlier but was hiding it from me I was crushed. It took months to get over because I was more hurt by the lack of communication than the break up, but still had to see him everyday.

    Later, after I got over the situation we were working on a project together and he kept speaking down to me, or so I thought and I finally confronted him about his better than me attitude. It was unprofessional for both of us, and I was really uncomfortable with our post secret romantic relationship- work relationship.
    Nevertheless, no one ever found out. I think people suspected it because we chatted a lot at work, but I think our general friendly to coworkers/likes to chat personalities saved us. We weren't sure how/when we were going to tell but it never got to that point. He has since left the company and my work life is much less dramatic because I don't have the awkwardness of the I used to date you attitude from both of us to deal with anymore.

    Whatever you decide though, best of luck! Definitely Definitely Definitely find out if there is a policy at work first!!!

    Posted by Beentheredonethat July 30, 09 01:49 PM
  1. RITSE,
    Go for it. Two of my co-workers fell in love three years ago and kept it to themselves for as long as possible. Long story short, they are getting married this April. Best wishes!

    Posted by PeonylovesthePru July 30, 09 01:53 PM
  1. how many cliches do you need

    don't fish off the company pier

    don't eat where you poop

    love is blind but divorce lawyers aren't

    Posted by Book of Kells July 30, 09 01:54 PM
  1. never dip your pen in compnay inc.

    and never fish off the company pier

    You've been warned

    Posted by thomaschealz July 30, 09 02:03 PM
  1. I think Meredith is right on point with her advice. My guy and I started dating at work and even though we didn't disclose we were maybe a bit too public and our boss (who was a wretched woman who did not have a significant other) was incredibly hard on us. Which lead to both of us leaving and deciding not to go back. I think it is different in every work place. But I do feel it is worth the risk if you have true feelings for the guy. Best of luck!

    Posted by Michelle July 30, 09 02:12 PM
  1. I met my wife at the office. It's worked out great. Nothing ventured, nothing gained or lost.

    Posted by masstexodus July 30, 09 02:26 PM
  1. I would like to know the route Rico rides to work, the approximate time he’s on the streets and some identifying feature,,, so I know where to aim my coffee as I drive past.
    Where are you Rico?
    What color helmet and bike are you riding?

    Posted by Not a fan of egomaniacs inventing fictional characters and try to hijack blogs July 30, 09 02:33 PM
  1. Great advice from Meredith. My husband and I met at work - no one knew we were a couple for almost two years, when it became time to share that we had bought a house and our wedding was a few months away (not wearing my engagement ring to work or talking to co-workers about wedding plans was lousy). At the time we disclosed, he was ready to make a career change anyway so if one of us had to go, we were prepared for that. To our surprise, everyone at work was gracious and supportive and happy for us, and a manager offered to help him transition to another department. He found something outside of the company before that was necessary.

    You spend most of your waking hours at work, it's perfectly natural to meet your significant other there. Take it slow, avoid drama, and be discreet and professional.

    Good luck!

    Posted by Jen July 30, 09 02:37 PM
  1. Valentino, your haikus are becoming the highlight of both LL and my day...

    Posted by Piccola July 30, 09 02:52 PM
  1. LW, others may bore you with their seemingly endless verbage --these are also the people who enjoy the sound of their voice a little too much-- only to tell you it's up to YOU and your gut.

    I suggest you make a list of Pros and Cons regarding this relationship. If the Pros outweigh the Cons, you're good to go!

    Posted by Amazed July 30, 09 02:59 PM
  1. Dating a co-worker is only worthwhile if you can "sleep your way up the ladder".

    Posted by DudeGuyKidDudeGuy666 July 30, 09 03:07 PM
  1. Great advice, Amazed. The LW should ignore all the comments and just follow his/her gut. Brilliant. I'm sure LW never thought of that prior to deciding to write in to GET OTHER PEOPLE'S OPINIONS!!!!!!

    Hi hats, not arsehats!

    To the LW: If you can be discrete in the workplace with it, then start dating. If it becomes serious, then and only then, do you need to worry about HR, bosses, employee handbooks, new jobs, etc.

    Posted by Boo Ya Bonham July 30, 09 03:56 PM
  1. Ill show you how to fax
    In the mailroom, honey
    And have you home by five

    He can get a job elsewhere if he gets fired ... can he get another hot eastern European woman? Doubtful. Go for it.

    Posted by Romanian women are HOT July 30, 09 04:28 PM
  1. Rico rides a route he will not divulge and changes it regularly, Rico rides different bikes depending on mood, each of a different color. Rico's helmet is multi colored and he wears different clothing each day. Rico is a safe rider but he'll happily wave to anyone that says hello to him because Rico is a friendly guy and he has been known to use his phone to talk or send a text. Rico doesn't like people double parking in the bike lanes or people that drive stupid and could cause Rico to get hurt. Rico has been hit before and would like to avoid it ever happening again. Rico loves the ride, the sights, smells and sounds of the city...you should all try it some time. You see and learn so much about your surroundings.

    Now everyone get back to work...especially the letter writer and his/her friend (Meredith says SHE signed the letter, not HE). They don't pay you to fool around in the office :)

    Love always,


    Posted by Rico July 30, 09 04:31 PM
  1. Sexual Chocolate - I don't have to stoop to your level to see that I'm not a character, but rather a person with character. And you are?

    Posted by TheReverendHortonHeat July 30, 09 04:40 PM
  1. RITSE, if you are indeed a guy, then you should be sure to get your own permanent resident visa, as you can't get a fiance visa. (It's a federal rule, not Mass., of course.) But you know this.

    Valentino, are those Ys supposed to be gymnasts nailing their landings and standing there with arms upstretched?

    Posted by Sasha July 30, 09 05:05 PM
  1. #17, it is, "Don't get your meat where you make your bread."

    Romance is wonderful, in the office or not, boss or not as long as people act humanely. If he can be counted on to be professional, discrete, and adult I say enjoy!

    Posted by The Rooster July 30, 09 05:26 PM
  1. #61 Sasha - Yes they are...After the dismount

    Posted by valentino July 30, 09 06:17 PM
  1. I hope this dude isn't just charming you so he can marry an American and become a citizen and then dump you. Otherwise, go ahead and date him and let your jealous coworkers be damned!

    Posted by Liz Pakula July 30, 09 06:40 PM
  1. I'm wondering if the repeated use of "feces" as a metaphor for having a relationship reflects these posters' lack of skill, intention, and maturity in managing their romantic lives.

    Posted by Steve in W MA July 30, 09 07:43 PM
  1. Rico texts while riding? Very very bad behavior! Do you want to be punished (consenually, of course)?

    Now all you killjoys: A company has no ethical right to say no dating in the office. Who are the bosses to say when someone can and can't fall in love? Create a federal law against this bias, I say. Sheesh, some of you sound like goose-stepping, boot-licking (not in the sensual way) corporate drones. The L/W may have found a soul-mate - and your pulling out the corporate line? For shame! A pox on you.

    Posted by reindeergirl July 30, 09 10:11 PM
  1. BTW, does that sweet Bulgarian grocer in the South End - the one with the vats of Kalamata olives in a good brine - is he still around?

    Wait, that was before the El was dismantled ... .

    The place had (has?) sawdust floors, tons of different kinds of cheese and halvah, and could be a good place for the trysts during work hours (because the killjoys here won't let you be in lurve in the office). I think you have a sweet thing going, good luck!

    Posted by reindeergirl July 30, 09 10:16 PM
  1. Go for it! Potential love is so hard to find. You may look back on this and regret it if you don't. Life is short. Live a little.

    Posted by algernon July 30, 09 10:17 PM
  1. To poster#64, Liz, Dating should be in love, or in like , and fun, if you don't find it happening to you, you should dump each other. I never seeing be dum is such a bad thing.

    Posted by stephanie July 30, 09 10:25 PM
  1. Full disclosure: I have never dated anyone I work with. Part of that is principle. The other part is that I realize if you are working closely on a project with someone, feelings can arise that just won't carry over into real life. And also that I worried what would happen if I ended up becoming the guy's boss. (on that last point, I am simillarly cautious about all work friendships too - it's happened too often, where I've started out as a peer and got promoted to my peers' boss).

    But, it sounds like you have seen this person outside of work, and there are still feelings. So check off that one concern.

    Since there's no company policy against it, and the corporate culture seems to be supportive (other married couples), then go for it and enjoy.

    As for disclosure, I'd wait until you feel confident that:

    1) The relationship has serious legs

    2) You would not care if your lover was promoted before you.

    3) You would not care if you missed out on a promotion because your lover was promoted instead of you.

    Being completely pessimistic and suspicious, just make sure he's not woo-ing you for competitive advantage. I don't know how cut-throat your company is, but it can happen. I hope it's not and I hope you fall in deep love and get married and live happily ever after!!!!

    Posted by good luck July 30, 09 10:44 PM
  1. I think this question is an april fool's joke in July. Seriously, which one of you sent in this question?

    Posted by yupokay July 30, 09 10:48 PM
  1. I think Mere is dead on. Sounds like a really nice start.

    Posted by Mario July 31, 09 12:20 AM
  1. I say do it. At work.

    Posted by Supacoo. July 31, 09 01:59 AM
  1. Boo Ya Bonham:
    I suggested she write a list of pros and cons and if the pros outweigh the cons, she should go for it.

    Settle down and pay more attention.

    Posted by Amazed July 31, 09 06:41 AM
  1. #71 Yupokay, I was wondering that too. There is not a hint of non-native English in that letter.

    Posted by Sasha July 31, 09 06:46 AM
  1. reindeergirl,
    there will be a ton of negative posts, welcome to public blog !

    Posted by public pox on you July 31, 09 08:15 AM
  1. My husband and I met under similar circumstances. It would have been very difficult to keep it a secret for long since we often went out after work with a group of co-workers. But, there was never, never, never any kind of PDA when we were in the company of coworkers (obviously not at work and never after work if we were with a group). I don't remember it ever being a problem for coworkers to know that we were dating. The key is to make sure that you never give coworkers a reason to feel uncomfortable with your relationship. We never went off by ourselves during work for breaks, lunch, etc. and definitely had more of a "friend" relationship at the office. It worked for us!!

    Posted by happy mom at home with 3 kids July 31, 09 08:26 AM
  1. Are you still standing? Are you dating that "I want to sweep a lady off her feet" who was desperately looking for his 'happily ever after'?

    You work in a firm and your date walks on the 'outside of the sidewalk' and sweeper-dude lawyer likes to "walk on the outside of the curb".

    Agree with #71! Yup, this is definitely a joke.

    Posted by marj July 31, 09 08:30 AM
  1. People are so up-tight about their careers. Bottom line is if both of you contribute positively to the bottom line of the firm then I wouldn't worry about it especially if you are the same pay-grade level.

    I think you should both agree that if things go sour not to bring it to the workplace.

    Follow these quit hits and you'll be fine:
    1. No public display of affection
    2. don't hang around his office/cube twirling your hair as you listen intently to every word he says.
    3. Don't go on long lunch breaks with him. Better yet don't go to lunch with him at all!

    Bottom line people will use it against you because some hate to see someone happy. Life is short, you should be happy and have a good job.

    Good Luck!

    Posted by Paul from Wellesley July 31, 09 09:57 AM
  1. ew, once again reindeer girl says something dumb and uninformed. the reason some companies do not allow interoffice dating is because it may conflict with promotions and could create and uncomfortable environment for all coworkers. it would be unethical to be dating your boss. dont you see that????

    Posted by duh!!!! July 31, 09 10:11 AM
  1. Meredith - you really need to get control of the moderation in this columnn. With Rico, the Revererand, and now 5 or 10 people a day posting song lyrics and stupid poems - the quality of advice and discourse in the comment section is GOD AWFUL.

    Seriously, you could eliminate 80% of the nonsense in the comments section and be left with information and feedback that actually MEANS SOMETHING, instead of this running static.

    Posted by Chris P July 31, 09 10:22 AM

    Posted by Been around & an out of towner July 31, 09 01:51 PM
ABOUT LOVE LETTERS: Welcome to Love Letters, the place for love advice (giving and getting). Globe relationship columnist Meredith Goldstein and Boston.com readers are ready to take your letters and tell you what's what. Have a question? Click here to submit or email us at loveletters@boston.com.
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Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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