Rethinking Workplace Dating

When you get older, it seems like you’re more limited in ways to meet the right person. For me, I feel I have basically two options–online dating and workplace dating. Between the two, I’d much rather meet someone at work. And one thing I will say for where I work, even if I don’t like my actual job, is there are tons of beautiful women there. I don’t actually recall the last time I’ve been anywhere that is full of beautiful, smart, successful black women. But my company is full of them!

Over the last few days, I’ve realized I really have a crush on the chick from my last post, whom I am calling Belinda here at LO. I’ve been thinking about her all weekend. I saw her Friday at work and got all nervous, especially since she looked so good. And while I was working, the co-worker who sits beside me got a call from her. He said her first and last name, and my head immediately shot around towards his direction. At first I sat there smiling to myself, and then I jumped up from my seat and ran over to him to listen to their call. Then after they got off the phone, I asked him all kinds of questions about why she was calling and how often he has spoken to her.

Gosh, I totally feel and sound like a high school kid.

But I have to forget about it, and her.

See, this weekend while I’ve been thinking about Belinda, I also realized that I can’t date her even if she wanted to date me. In fact, I probably can’t date anyone at my company. Or maybe not “can’t”…perhaps “shouldn’t” is the better word.

[Sigh]

I work in the f*cking IT department, man. That means we interact with absolutely every other department at my company. There is nobody where I work whom I can absolutely say our work would never intersect. In fact, I looked through my company’s directory and realized I interact with people in Belinda’s department on a damn-near daily basis from a tech standpoint…people whom I know she knows–especially her manager.

Belinda’s a supervisor in another department. She’s not even just another f*cking employee–she’s a goddamn supervisor. She’s the equivalent of the dumbass for whom I work in IT. And although I don’t know my company’s rules on workplace dating and though I don’t really think it’d be wrong or detrimental to her for her to date me since I’m not one of her subordinates, I do see ways that my dating her could hurt me at work. Liiiiiiike…if things don’t work out…she has the power to go to my supervisor or his supervisor and complain about me, say, the way people complained to him about Lazy Tech…and then it’d be my word against hers when she’s the one in a position of power.

And because of the nature of my job, I can’t just avoid people. If things didn’t work out and she continued to contact tech support for various things–which, according to my co-worker, even though I’d written before that she hardly ever contacts tech support based on my own experience, he says he gets calls from her just about every other day–I can’t pass her phone call off to someone else or tell someone else to respond to her emails. I’d have to deal with her, and if I didn’t then, again, she could complain to my supervisor.

This last point also makes me think about what it’d be like if I dated just anyone at my company and it didn’t work out. I’d never be able to avoid whomever it is. And if the person is vindictive, she could go to my supervisor with all kinds of lies or just silly complaints. And then what would my defense be? “Yeah, I was fucking her after work, and now she’s all mad at me and trying to get me fired.” Right, like I’m going to tell my supervisor my business…or like I’d want to be in a position where I might have to or even where people actually know anyways without my telling them. In my last post, I mentioned how one of my co-workers came up to me and was telling me about how Belinda wanted to meet me. It was kind of uncomfortable…I had to keep a straight face and act like it was no big deal. But it did matter, because I’ve noticed her. And the fact that someone came up to me and mentioned it…it feels like the person is trying to get in the middle of something or start something. Basically, why did my co-worker even tell me that, you know?

Part of me thinks that, hey, she’s a supervisor…she should know better, so that must mean that she’s just being friendly and that’s it. Of course, supervisors don’t always know better, but still. I’m also not going to forget that she was kind of a bitch with me one time because I wouldn’t do something she wanted. I felt at the time that it said something about her, and I still think that could be the case.

In fact, I’m starting to wonder if she’s one of those high-maintenance women. There are different ways to be high maintenance, but some of them intersect most of the time. I’m not saying it’s always a bad thing; my mother is a type of high-maintenance woman. It’s a little annoying waiting two hours on her to get ready just so we can go to Walgreen’s, but that’s better than being the type of high maintenance woman who will dump ya because you can’t or won’t go into the poor house buying her schitt–my mother’s not that type, although she definitely likes to live a certain way and admitted that, at this point in her life, if she were dating she couldn’t date someone who didn’t make enough money for her to live the kind of life she has gotten used to. Still, I do think a fairly good percentage of high-maintenance women have certain personality flaws that I probably can’t hang with, to put it euphemistically.

I have noticed Belinda’s physical appearance more, which I don’t know if she has just stepped her game up or I just wasn’t paying attention before or what. Like my mother, she’s one of those women whom you can tell likes to look good and puts the time and effort in. She’s got a great body, great hair and her clothes look like they were tailor-made for her. She comes to work looking more like she’s going on a date or trying to attract someone. I’m not saying she looks inappropriate, but sometimes she just doesn’t look like anyone else who is just going to work looks. She certainly doesn’t look like any supervisor I’ve ever seen. Between that and the mini-tantrum she threw the one time I didn’t do something she wanted, I just have to wonder if she’s the classic “pretty bitch” (and again, my mother is high maintenance…love mom, but she is at least kind of difficult and demanding). If she is, she’s not someone I want to take chances with at work as far as things not working out if we date. Who knows how she’d react.

This is all theoretical at this point–highly theoretical–but still very important to realize. With the type of job that I do, it’s probably best if I just look but don’t touch while I’m at this particular company. It sucks, though, because it takes away what is probably the most likely way for me–and many other adults–to meet someone who is relationship material.

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