My coworker led me on and I'm hurting inside my office everyday

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    Mega Man

    Last February, I started dating my coworker. Before that, I had to break up with my girlfriend last January due to a number of reasons such as the age-gap (6 years; I’m only 21) and what we wanted eventually in our lives.
    Moving on, we started dating after Valentine’s day and before that (again), she just turned down a really close friend of mine from college (who also HAPPENS to be my co-worker).
    Our relationship started to develop when we watched a play + a cruise dinner right after. She doesn’t like to eat much but she isn’t picky, and the quality time we spend in person is when I take her to her house and when we make out in places in public (she initiates).
    She hasn’t had a boyfriend ever. I was the one who stole her first kiss and we’ve been so intimate ever since I stole that from her.
    Going back to my close friend/coworker, I just found out that while we were dating she’s been in contact with him via Skype or on casual visits when she needs to go to the other office site.
    She told me that they don’t date anymore and she clearly told me that she hasn’t given this chance (dating to this extent with me) to anyone.
    I started to have problems when I caught her drawing some stuff on a card and inserting it inside a book which I confirmed to be a book she borrowed back then from him.
    Technically, she isn’t cheating, but I just got so heartwrenched since I made it clear that she had to choose between me and him before we started dating.
    I gave her space and finally she told me to stop after a week of thinking about it well last latter part of March. WEIRDLY ENOUGH, a few hours after turning me down, she told me she missed me. I still kept ignoring her a few days after that, until such time that I missed her as well and things were back to the way they were…or so I thought.
    A few weeks ago again after all the sweet stuff of waiting for me to get home, still the kisses, the stories, me taking her home while she’s right beside me — she asked me out on a date since she already wanted to know this one secret I have been keeping from her. I mentioned that we haven’t been going out much on real dates like dinners and stuff (I can still count them in one hand), but she told me that probably that Friday of the week would be an ideal time to tell her my secret.
    My secret happens to be that I have clinical depression and anxiety and I’m taking medicines of minimal dosages for it.
    Friday came, but I was surprised that she didn’t talk to me at all. I had to scourge through the whole day without her telling me what the plan was until at 6 pm that day, I had to ask her straight up what was wrong.
    Turns out she was still picking between us two. And I couldn’t believe that she lied to me and that she had not been communicating with me about this.
    I feel that everything we did was a lie and that she used me for something she couldn’t get from my friend which was the intimacy and the passion to some extent.
    She told me she liked me so much before but I don’t believe that now. She admitted to her selfishness and only after a week of turning me down, they started going out (or at least tried to). She made excuses as to the girls I’ve been hanging out with that looked wrong, and I rebutted by telling her: “ WELL YOU WERE TALKING TO MY CLOSE FRIEND WHO, AGAIN, YOU TURNED DOWN TOO LAST JANUARY!”. I got really hurt when she said that there were qualities about him that she didn’t find in me and vice versa. Before we started dating, she even told me that she saw me as a partner in the long run. What’s worse is that she was telling me stuff about her introducing me to her family eventually .
    I never showed her any form of clinginess and I’ve always been honest. I made things spontaneous as possible and I don’t think she was ever bored of my company.
    She said she was sorry but now as I wake up everyday, I don’t feel like I’m happy inside the office except when there are tasks at hand wherein I could channel my energy/distract myself.
    Still, it’s a huge battle within me. I have accepted the fact that she doesn’t want me anymore but f**k did she run me over. I was an option in a woman’s life and this was the first time I ever was one. Also, to make things a lot more worse, there was already a red flag that I didn’t see wherein she told me that “what if I gave him (my close friend/coworker) the same chance I gave you?”.

    I’ve been following the tiny buddha for quite awhile now and it really has been helping, except for the fact that I haven’t seen an article related on how to deal with someone you see everyday who double-crossed you in a lot of ways.



    • This topic was modified 9 years ago by Mega Man.

    Hi hopelesslycharmed,

    Wow, this girl is so, um, HONEST about “choosing between you”. TBH, women do this all the time. It’s just that we are way more discreet about it. Like, you would never know that it is happening. If a girl has a lot of admirers, then it is natural that she would want to go on a (discreet) date with each one, and then pick and choose. But this is just wrong what she’s doing.

    I’m sorry she was so obvious about having you as an option. The only thing you can do now is tell her that you are “No Longer an Option”. And tell the other guy that she’s playing both of you. It would be great if you both dump her at the same time so her little ego boost is over, and she never plays people so openly again.

    I hope you find true love. All three of you. With different people. Because this is not it. This is a game (at least to her).



    • This reply was modified 9 years ago by Inky.

    Good advice inky.

    Move on. I’m sorry it happened at the office but you aren’t anyone’s backup plan… In my opinion, the most powerful, vengeful, and paradoxically healing thing you can do is nothing… She expects you to be upset and ask her “why” or try to hold on. Instead, by you saying “OK, that’s fine” (& smiling in her face) you communicate your strength as a person.


    Also, advice for future dating… When a woman mentions dating another man then never talk to her again. It is a power play on her part and manipulative…. You both could be dating 5 other people and not exclusive yet.. but never bring them up as it will ruin the spark and is extremely disrespectful

    Mega Man

    Testing something about the replies here. I posted two but I can’t seem to find them displayed here.

    Mega Man

    Hi Inky,

    It seems that my other reply was gone and now I have to start from scratch.

    Anyway, thank you very much for the reply. I really appreciate it. I recently talked to her during our company beach outing 1 on 1 since I couldn’t stand the fact that the closure she gave me was still vague and that it was virtual (via Skype).

    I cried so much that time in front of her and I feel like all the balls are on her court. But I told her to pray for me that I wouldn’t plant any seeds of anger towards her and my friend (even if my friend didn’t do anything wrong too).

    I cried because I lost so much on my end…especially a big chunk of self-esteem. Currently, the circle where my friend and I belong to has been organizing a reunion and all I could do is ignore since I don’t wanna be put in the hot spot (out of embarrassment and all that). In the office, I have to deal with her being surrounded with the friends we share and her talking to them as if I was non-existent. It’s lonesome.

    Regarding my friend and her dating, I don’t wanna meddle in their affair but I know that it will pinch a bit if ever they decide to be together as a couple.

    I have accepted the fact that we’re never gonna be a couple, but damn I wish I was someplace else.

    – hopelesslycharmed

    Mega Man

    Hi Christopher.m,

    Lately I’ve been going to the gym, reconnecting with old friends, hanging out with my usual friends, drinking, playing guitar, going to clubs that aren’t really my thing…basically I’ve been doing my best to kill time and forget about her.

    I haven’t learned how to let go but I’ve been reading articles from tinybuddha and they help little by little.

    I sure wish I didn’t have to see her everyday, man. It sucks. It’s like it’s a step forward and a step backward everyday.

    I’m currently applying for this one job so that I can pursue my career growth. It’s not her being the reason of me switching companies, but I think the reason why we developed towards dating was because we were benched for so long (11 months).

    2015 isn’t a good year for me. It’s probably the worst, but it did do me a lot for realizing my worth.

    I honestly still love my ex, but external factors caused me to break up with her. She’s 27 and I’m 21. Financially, we’re not capable. And she doesn’t want kids at all…

    Anyway, thanks again…


    Great job man. Congrats on setting new goals and reprioritizing. Imo seriously dating a woman that young is very difficult since they havent fully matured yet… They don’t really know what they want until about 25. Between 18-24 they are usually all over the place. You could have been the perfect BF and it still not be enough to keep her loyal or interested.

    I’ve done far worse than you as far as trying to convince someone to stay (aka slightly begging). We’ve all been there man. Even the rich and famous get their hearts kicked around. You’ve learned your lesson young and next time a partner starts to flake or date other men you’ll know to bail out. You should consider yourself lucky that you are out of a relationship in which the woman doesn’t love you… Moreover, think of healthy male role models, would Leonardo DiCaprio cry if a girlfriend left him? No, probably not.

    I suggest you develop a mindful meditation practice of 20 minutes per day. This will help you keep control of your thoughts and emotions that are understandably all over the place. It will save you untold amounts of energy and suffering… You will be able to see this breakup as it truly is… Without clinging. You will likely smile and have higher confidence then ever once you start seeing things clearly…

    I don’t want to repeat myself… But if you really want to make your friend and ex befuddled say something like “oh don’t sweat, everyone gets their heart kicked around someimes…” They will laugh and so will you… Everyone will have even higher respect for you. They will be thinking…”Isn’t he supposed to be mad and devastated? Who the hell is this kid?” …. With an attitude like that you can’t lose. I don’t recommend continuing a friendship with either.. Just say hi and smile but don’t have any conversations or hangouts. Treat yourself kindly and buy yourself a new paid of shoes or a suit. You deserve it and will find a more suitable mate… The sooner you ask another girl out the better, don’t be gun shy or talk about this breakup to new lovers. Just say… It didn’t work out

    Hope this helps


    I’d like to argue for the other side, if that’s ok. You’ve had some good advice already, and I don’t disagree with much of it, but I think there are some things you could consider that might both help you in the future and make this situation a little less painful.

    So, first, I think she handled this badly. She tells you no, she tells you yes, she picks the other guy after all… it’s a mess. And I’m not absolving her at all. But. This was her first relationship. It was your first relationship. You were both learing how to do relationships and getting to know each other at the same time. Relationships are hard. The first couple times we try we mess a lot of stuff up. She didn’t know what she was doing, what exactly she wanted or how to make either clear to you or this other guy. How could she have known? She’s never been in a situation like this. Maybe thinking about it that way will help you find some forgiveness?

    As I said, you were brand new to this too. And it’s possible you didn’t handle things as well as you would have done with more experience. There may be some ways in which you contributed to the mess, not intending to, of course. I wonder what you mean, for example, when you say you “stole” her first kiss. Does that mean you kissed her without her expecting it? Without her being ready for it? And it was her first kiss? If so, you put her into a difficult situation. Here she is, having had her first kiss, and now there’s a level of connection between you that she may not have been ready for yet. Maybe she likes you, maybe you’re the kind of guy she would have liked to kiss at some point, once she got to know you better, but it’s too late for that. It’s already done. She never had a chance to pick you as her first kisser, so how can she now be sure how she feels about you?

    This may all sound silly to you. You were close afterwards so clearly she liked it and no problem, right? But you shouldn’t underestimate the pressure you put on her in doing that. Of course she liked you before, but now that you’d kissed, she had to either like you more, enough to keep kissing, or throw you away. She had no chance to naturally grow to like you enough to kiss willingly. There’s a reason you’re not supposed to engage in physical intimacy with someone unless you know they want to do that thing, want to do it with you and are ready to it here and now. If you are not sure of that, do not proceed. It messes things up. You messed with her feelings.

    You also say you made her choose between you and this other guy before you started dating. This is not unreasonable. Many people like to be explicitly exclusive right from date number one. On the other hand, many people take a different approach and go on casual dates here and there with more than one person to feel them out and make an informed choice on who suits them best. Either can work in growing relationships, but if one of you is one way, and the other the other, it’s not going to work. Because she’d never been in a relationship before, she didn’t know if she was one way or the other. She may have been told all sorts of things about how she should be. All of this comes together when you ask her to choose before she is ready to, and she chooses wrong. So she has to change her mind later. I don’t think that’s her fault, or your fault. It’s just an incompatibility neither of you had any way of knowing about.

    But if you want to draw a lesson from this, I would suggest this: if you push intimacy or commitment on someone who isn’t ready for it, they will either tell you “no” straight away, or they tell you “yes” and you’ve just put a time bomb under your relationship.

    One more thing: please don’t fall for the myth that someone who stopped loving you never loved you in the first place. It’s not true. Feelings can change over time, and if you believe that myth, it will turn all your relationships that end, and most of your relationships will, into dirt and lies. And they don’t have to be. You can have something beautiful, and then it goes bad and then it dies. But it was beautiful when it started, and you can hold the memory gladly.

    I hope you can move companies soon, because yeah, it sucks to be around an ex all the time. I hope your future relationships will be better and end less painfully. I hope your depression and anxiety will get better, because that is some heavy shit you’re dealing with. Give yourself some credit for dealing with that, and a heartbreak.

    All my best wishes.

    Mega Man

    Hi Will,

    That was some thorough and realistic advice you got for me back there and I am truly grateful.

    I’d like to keep in mind the best things about the advice you gave me such as:

    – don’t go for the intimacy part if you aren’t together yet with a label
    – breaking the myth of her not having loved me back

    But I do think that we started out right as close friends for months before we realized we had something going on. It just so happened that during a movie, she kissed me on the cheek and I accidentally kissed the side of her lip until such time that we both thoughr of the same thing.

    I didn’t intend for it to happen that way and I was telling her that I wanted to have introduced myself to her parents before anything else…bur being the typical Asian family they are (her parents are 65 yrs of age), it was too much of a long shot for me to have shown myself to them.

    I wanna learn so much from this since I really enjoy romance with the right person, but she taught me how to be happy with myself more and I guess that’s a good thing. A really good one in fact.

    However, I still think she did trek on the wrongest of the wrong when she decided to pull off another move with my close friend and now I have set up fences around me to protect myself from being humiliated.

    She’s a wonderful person and she could attract a lot of guys because of her personality, but after I got to know more about her it seemed as if she liked the fact that she was surrounded by guys and I just happened to be one she thought would rise above them at some point in time.

    I can’t look back now but being friends with her is definitely a “no” now, and I had a call from my coworker that she’s starting to lose interest in my friend too. I guess life happens everyday.

    Wishing you the best, Will. And thank you for acknowledging my depression.


    I see. Well, that doesn’t sound so much like “stealing” a kiss as “sort of stumbling into it”. If you both thought of the same thing, then that’s fine. These things do happen naturally.

    When it comes to intimacy, I don’t think it depends on your “label” so much as it does on how you and your partner are ready for and into the same level of contact. It’s OK to ask, “Can I kiss you?” just like it’s ok to ask, “How do you feel about being exclusive right from the start?”

    And yes, she didn’t treat you as well as she should have. And life happens every day.

    All the best.

    Mega Man

    Just an update:

    Hi everyone,

    I’m pretty much doing okay…except that whenever I’m in the office, I couldn’t help but remember the old times we shared. I’m literally diagonal from her now and her voice is all over the place.

    What do you guys do when you want to move on from someone you know deep inside you don’t deserve?


    • This reply was modified 9 years ago by Mega Man.

    Thanks for the update… It sounds like you’re doing well. As far as not deserving this girl I disagree. You could do everything right and still lose out at love… Remember this girl is extremely young and is likely going to date many more men before she settles down…

    Having your ex love interest nearby at work would test anyone’s patience… This is how it’d handle it personally.

    1) I recommend setting a mini-goal such as yoga everyday for 21 days straight. This will be brutual and challenging. But if you make it then you’ll have newfound confidence and perspective. Yoga by its nature FORCES you to stop thinking and concentrate. You will have no choice but to forget about this issue for at least an hour.

    2) I want you to invision being married to this girl for 20 years… All the while they she is not loyal, dependable, or loving. You are in constant stress of having to please this person. Hoping they dont stray. Wondering if she married you for love… Even better she starts to criticize you and slowly becomes less attravtive with wrinkles… Is this what you really want? Because that’s where that relationship was heading. You’d be on high blood pressure pills and possibly Viagra in your 40s. No lie man I’ve seen it happen…

    3) I suggest you sign up for speed dating. That will be a fun open environment in which you will have a high probability of meeting someone new and interesting.

    Hope this helps! Keep up the good fight.

    Mega Man

    Thanks, Christopher.m.

    In relation to yoga, I don’t think I’ve found the right teacher except for the previous one I had (who isn’t a yoga expert but knows how to handle and facilitate learning well).

    I hit the gym thrice a week and it truly does get my mind off things except for the fact that I’m one of the chubbiest/weakest in the gym. (well, I did lose 10 lbs though)

    Probably speed dating is a good idea but I hope we have such a thing in our country. Seems fun. I’ll let you guys know if there are.

    Overall, it’s still a challenge but I’m okay. NUMBER 2 WAS FUNNY THOUGH (NO BITTERNESS INTENDED) HAHAHA! I still find my ex-girlfriend the prettiest I have to admit.

    I will never date a co-worker again, even if she tries to flirt around with me.


    Mega Man

    It’s been a week since I last wrote a reply here, and I’ve been exercising everyday. My mood has been better but it seems like there’s something new every week that I have yet to fathom.

    I might sound like I’m bickering right now, but as it turns out I’ve been the talk of the office lately since my coworker and my friend are going strong as a couple and they’ve been teasing me.

    It feels uncomfortable, especially since she’s wearing the jacket of my friend now right in front of my face.

    I will be going to the gym still later, but how do you guys adapt to people like these?

    I sure wish I get to transfer companies soon.

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