Published on 12, July, 2020
There's one professional woman I see for help and at the last meeting she said she liked my hat, that it added mystery to my appearance, and complimented my coat and asked where I got it from. There was another time we were on the phone and she mentioned how I wasn't doing so well lately but at the end of last year I had a spring in my step and said that I was looking good too. Also every time we have met she at some point during the meeting starts curling her hair around while we're talking.
Would you say she was flirting?
Roswell said:curling her hair around while we're talking.
Yup, she's flirting
Maybe, but then curling your hair can easily be just a habit. Friends compliment each other all the time. I wouldn't be so sure - given she's a professional, it might be a boundary that shouldn't be overstepped…
You're like me in that I don't recognise the signs. I've missed a lot of opportunities in the past.
Do you think you might respond? When you say she's a professional you see for help, do you mean like a therapist? I only ask because there would obviously be an issue with boundaries.
She's a mental health nurse so yeah I think there would be boundaries. Just wondered why she's doing it really, if she is flirting.
Hm. Looking back on it, my therapist was quite flirtatious. Her clothing, too, was sometimes not what I'd consider professionally appropriate. Distracting, you might say. I hope that doesn't make me sound sexist. I wonder now if part of it might have been that she knew there could not be anything between us. Maybe she enjoyed that dynamic. Who knows?
Does it make you feel uncomfortable in her presence? It's really odd, but if I've got the hots for someone, I try to avoid being around them too much. You'd think it would be the other way around. But I'm just afraid of it being too obvious, and I'd end up a fumbling wreck.
She's not making me uncomfortable, on occasion I've felt a bit distracted by her but overall it's fine.
I understand what you mean about getting nervous if you've got the hots for someone.
I have a theory that some women who do this may feel attention starved in the romantic sense. Perhaps your therapist had a boring relationship or was single, and she just wanted to feel wanted.
Maybe. I suppose it can't always be easy to maintain professional distance. I guess it goes the same for men, too.
And people build up attachments. A woman I used to know was seeing a male MH support worker for many years. She had many problems and was incapable of working. When he retired, she was in crisis. She'd come to look upon him as the father figure she lacked in her life. I think, in the end, he agreed to meet her for coffee once in a while, just until she was able to get established with someone else.
In my last job, one of the female clients developed an attachment for me. She kept writing me letters saying that she liked me and could talk to me, and asking if she could work with me more. I mentioned it to management, but they said it had happened before and was quite innocent. After I went sick and didn't go back, I worried for a while about her. Apparently, she was quite upset. But she's fine now.
The difficult thing about these situations is, the people involved may not find people as compatible with them, outside that professional setting.