If you’ve ever worked in an office, then you know the potential for awkward interactions is much higher.
Especially, when your married boss has a crush on you!
What do you do in that situation? Well, I’m here to shed some light on that:
1) Stay calm and make sure he truly has a crush
The first thing you need to do is acknowledge your feelings and stay calm.
You don’t want to overreact and make things worse.
So, begin by calming yourself down.
Also, remember that this situation is not your fault.
No matter what, you did not cause this. He made the decision to act on his feelings and not respect the fact that he’s your boss.
Now: it’s important before you take any further steps, to acknowledge whether he really has a crush on you.
You see, you don’t want to do all these things that help with your boss having a crush on you when in reality, he doesn’t.
Here are a few signs he really is in love with you:
He pays extra attention to you
When your boss pays extra attention to you, he’s trying to get you to like him.
When you work in an office, it’s inevitable that you will run into the same people over and over again.
This is what’s known as ‘repetition’.
When this happens, your boss could be subconsciously trying to make a connection with you even though he knows you two aren’t romantically involved.
So, when he pays extra attention to you, it’s because he wants something from you! He wants your attention and validation from his crush on you!
He gives you unnecessary gifts
Sure, in the workplace you sometimes receive gifts from your boss, for example, if it’s your birthday.
But if your boss is constantly giving you gifts that are way too personal, then there’s a chance he’s in love with you.
For example, if your boss gives you gift cards to the places where you both like to go out.
Or if he gives you flowers or chocolates.
When your boss gives these kinds of gifts, it’s because he wants something from you! He wants your attention and validation from his crush on you!
He is blatantly flirting with you
One of the most definite signs that your boss has a crush on you is when he blatantly flirts with you.
It can be embarrassing, especially when you don’t feel the same way about him and he does it in front of other colleagues.
After all, you don’t want to seem as though you’re “sleeping with the boss to have an advantage”.
But usually, your coworkers will notice that you don’t reciprocate the flirty remarks.
2) Decide your own level of comfort
Next, after you’ve made sure that your boss truly has a crush on you, you need to decide how comfortable you are with this situation.
Is he crossing a line with you? Is he creating a hostile work environment?
If your answer is no to both of those questions, then it is probably best if you ignore it.
If your answer is yes to either question, then you need to confront the situation. You need to decide how to confront the situation.
You see, when a boss is crossing the line, making you uncomfortable, or generally just making you dread going to work, that’s a problem.
You need to take action.
You see, for the most part, if you feel uncomfortable with your boss’ behavior, you can simply ignore it.
In other words, you can just pretend that he doesn’t have a crush on you and that his behavior is normal.
However, if it’s making you dread going to work and it’s not getting better with time, then you need to take action against it by saying something about how much this situation bothers you or what you’re going to do about it.
Every person’s level of comfort is different, so I really can’t give you any advice on what is “crossing the line” and what isn’t.
In general, as soon as you are uncomfortable, that is crossing a line.
3) Set boundaries
After you’ve decided that the behavior is inappropriate and unwanted, you need to set boundaries.
Let him know that you are uncomfortable with the way he is acting around you.
Be specific about what his behavior is and how you want him to change it.
You can also let him know that you appreciate the attention, but you don’t want to act on any of it.
Alternatively, you can let him know that you are flattered by the attention, but you are in a relationship and are not interested in pursuing anything with him.
You see, boundaries are important in any relationship, be it with a partner, a friend, or your boss.
Boundaries are basically rules that you set up between two people to keep them from crossing a certain line.
If you do not set boundaries, then your boss will cross the line and make it uncomfortable for you.
And, if he crosses the line, then what’s the point of working there?
In other words, setting boundaries makes it clear that you are uncomfortable with his behavior and that he needs to stop.
However, it’s not always easy to set boundaries, especially when you grew up kind of ignoring your own needs and desires.
You see, when you’re young, it’s easy to care more about everyone else’s feelings than your own.
And, when you’re younger and have a lot of self-confidence, it’s easy to just ignore boundaries and then get into all sorts of situations that are uncomfortable for you later on in life.
I can’t say that this is going to happen to everyone.
But, it might happen if you grew up in a family where the only thing that mattered was pleasing your parents and getting their approval.
In other words, if you grew up with parents who were more concerned about how others were feeling than how you were feeling (or didn’t feel), then it might be hard for you to set boundaries with your boss because he is someone important who has a lot of power over your life.
In that case, I can really recommend working on your boundary-setting skills, either with a therapist, coach or on your own.
This will not only help you with your boss’s situation, but it will also help you in all other kinds of situations in life!
4) Establish a support network
After you’ve set boundaries, you need to establish a support network.
Find someone at work that you trust and let them know what’s going on. You can also let your HR department know.
You see, if you have nobody to talk to about this situation, it can get really lonely really quickly.
This is especially the case if your coworkers are jealous of the attention you’re getting from your boss.
So, let someone know what’s going on so you can get support and encouragement from them.
This will be particularly helpful if your boss has a bad reputation at your workplace.
Your support network might include:
- friends at work
- friends outside of work
- a therapist
Basically anybody you can tell your worries to and who will be supportive of you.
A support network can help you feel less isolated and keep your ego in check.
5) Ask to be moved to a different team or department
If everything else fails, you can ask to be moved to a different team or department.
You can let your boss know that you appreciate everything he’s done for you, but you feel more comfortable if you were to move to a different department.
This might be tough, especially if you like the place where you work and don’t want to change.
Now: if that is the case, I would recommend you try all the other tips first and see if anything else might work for you.
You see, being moved to a different team is always a bit difficult, so it’s nice if you can resolve the situation in a different way.
If all else fails, though, this is always an option you can keep in mind, which is nice!
6) Talk to his supervisor
Okay, now we’re bringing out the big guns.
If all else fails, you can talk to his supervisor. Let them know what’s been happening and see if they can take any action.
If you have tried every other solution, you might have no other choice than to go talk to his supervisor.
In case you have an HR department, that might be a good place to go, or you can talk to the CEO directly.
Now: if your boss is at the very top of your company’s corporate ladder, this won’t really be an option for you.
In that case, you can only talk to him directly or tell him that you want to switch jobs.
This brings me to my next point:
7) Change jobs
If everything else fails, you can change jobs. If you’ve tried everything and you’re still uncomfortable, then you may want to consider changing jobs.
You see, there is no use in staying at a job where your boss is making you feel uncomfortable!
I know, this is probably the last resort you want to take, especially if you like your job, but sometimes it’s the only option you have.
In that case, I would recommend you try everything else first and see if anything else might work for you.
It is always a good idea to make sure that your new job is a good fit for you before you accept it, though.
You see, when you change jobs, at least you get a completely fresh start on the whole situation.
8) Make it clear to him that you are not interested
This is a really important step to take, and it’s never too late!
You see, if you don’t approach your boss about this situation, then it will just get worse.
If you don’t say anything about this problem at all, then it will just continue to fester in your mind and eventually come out in some other way (such as a passive-aggressive comment or an outburst).
However, if you do approach your boss about it, then he or she is likely to hear what you have to say and respond with kindness and understanding.
If he doesn’t get the hint, then you need to make it clear to him that you are not interested.
You can let him know that you appreciate the attention, but you are in a relationship and are not interested in pursuing anything with him.
Or, you can let him know that you appreciate the attention, but you are not interested in pursuing anything with him because he is married.
Whatever it is, make it crystal clear to him that there is no chance you two will ever be an item so that he can finally move on with his life.
If you have tried everything else, and it hasn’t worked, then I would recommend telling your boss that you want to switch jobs if he doesn’t respect your wishes.
I know, this probably isn’t something that most people would want to do in the first place.
However, if you have tried everything else and nothing has worked, then I think it is a good idea for you to make this request.
Sometimes, just working that threat into a conversation with him can be enough for him to finally back off.
9) If you are attracted to him, try to get some space from him
If you are attracted to your married boss and you know he has a crush on you, then the best thing you can do is try to get some space from him.
This can be really difficult, but it’s important.
You don’t want to do anything to jeopardize your job while also dealing with feelings of guilt.
You can try to arrange your schedule so you don’t have to spend as much time with him.
You can also try to maintain a more professional distance from him.
Whatever you do, getting involved with your married boss is almost never a good idea, so make sure you try to get over your feelings, first.
If you really can’t and you feel like he might be the one, then you can only talk to him about it all and find a solution that works for your company, but also for his marriage.
You see, better to distance yourself first and let a crush be a crush.
10) Communicate clearly
Lastly, you should communicate clearly. Let him know that you appreciate the attention, but you are not interested in pursuing anything with him.
Let him know that your relationship is important to you.
Make him understand that you both deserve respect and honesty from each other.
Let him know that you are not interested in pursuing anything with him and that you want him to respect your relationship.
Whatever you do, make sure that you always communicate clearly what you want and think with your boss.
You need to determine if the situation is worth it for you.
You see, without communication, neither of you will know where the other one stands, so always speak your mind and make sure you are on the same page.
Now: if your boss threatens your career if you don’t go out with him, that is where you need to alarm either HR or the authorities.
This is a situation where he is clearly overstepping his rights and infringing yours.
You got this
Whatever you do, things will be okay.
It will all calm down eventually and maybe your boss will even get over his little crush.
Either way, make sure you take care of yourself in the meantime and look out for your mental health.
This can be a difficult situation to deal with, but you got this!
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