I am secretly in love with my boss. I have worked in the company for 18 months and he is so cute. I often wondered if he has something for me too and just last week, he called me to his office and asked if it was okay to go out for drinks after work with him next Friday. I was shocked but also very happy. Should I go?
I would say that you should only go if you are mature enough to handle rejection that might occur after this first date, if you have a tough skin that can absorb gossip, and if you do not usually attach emotionally.
There are several reasons office romance is bad. What if there is an embarrassing moment after your boss drinks too much liquor and begins to grope you. You end up slapping him and taking a taxi home? What if things are so chummy that he kisses you and you actually enjoy it and call him Bill (his first name instead of Mr. McKenzie)?
What if you then get to the office on Monday morning so bright and “in Love” with him that you actually call him Bill in front of the staff?
Well guess what the rumor mill will embark on for the rest of the month?
Office romance is generally bad and worse when the boss is dating the subordinate. In this case it will be a disaster for your boss when he does not return the feelings that you are already having after one hot date. If you request vacation time and he denies it, you may think it is because ‘he is not into you” and then you begin to act out. When you are in this terrible mood, your work suffers, and you may even report your boss to the office of Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and depending on how the investigation goes, he may lose his job.
Now let us assume that he is the one who falls head over heels in love with you, but you do not reciprocate. After all it was just a one-night stand. He begins to harass you and denies you that vacation out of spite. You report him to the same EEO and it is termed sexual harassment. He still ends up losing his job.
In conclusion, office romance is bad. Period. Ok, if you are both on the same level and end up falling in love and getting married, HR will most likely transfer one of you to a different department. This is to avoid any emotional disruptions in the office involving both of you or yet a third party who has eyes for either of you.
The lesson here is to keep your hands out of someone in the office.
■ Dr. NJ