Hot for married co-worker

She says she's loyal to her husband and wants to have babies with him -- do I have a chance with her?

By Cary Tennis
Published May 29, 2009 10:25AM (EDT)

Dear Reader,

Well, my mother died last week, and I just have to say, whatever turbulent sea of grief may await me, I am for the time being gingerly stepping along its surface. More will be revealed, I'm sure.

I am always buoyed by your thoughts and I can of course be reached by e-mail but the volume is somewhat prohibitive of careful consideration. So if you would like to write with shared feelings or condolences, please do so by mail at Post Office Box 320499, San Francisco, CA 94132.

Dear Cary,

I would like some advice on a very complicated and important matter. There is a married woman of about the same age as me, whom I dearly love. When I first saw her I honestly didn't know she was married. It was like I came across this girl at my workplace whom I instantly fell in love with. She seemed so innocent, sophisticated and lovely. About four months went by and we never had a conversation. Then one day, all of a sudden she asked me a small favor as a colleague and that was it. Ever since we had gotten along really well but later I found out she was married. I stayed very calm and almost the same way I was before, but for a moment I got furious inside and kept that aggression inside and did not reveal the mood swing.

I know it is wrong to try to pursue a married woman but I really find her very, very attractive and every time I see her I just can't avoid chatting her up. She tends to be, for some reason, very loyal to her husband and even told me that she wants to have his babies. We can talk about almost anything and are good friends. I have tried putting my mind off of her by concentrating on the general human (weaknesses) attributes or things a person may have, e.g., sweat, hairy bits she may have, bad breath, dirty or smelly backside or even dandruff or bogey etc. You get the point ... anything that may help me in keeping away from her.

At the end of the day I am not entirely sure about what she thinks of me. She does accept my offers for drinks. Please help me and if there is any possibility of starting a relationship with her at all, or if there is no harm, please help me.


Dear Sam,

It is OK to have these feelings. But you must not let these feelings cloud your view of what is real. One learns to handle such things -- not to kill them or obsess about them but simply to hold them in the container of one's chest, to carry them lightly and let them be, for as long as they are there. And then one wakes up one morning, or one is walking dully along and discovers they must have vanished.

Your job until then is to contain this and live with this and let it be. Enjoy it but do not build expectations on it. It is a crush. It happens. You must not allow it to cloud your thinking. There must be your thinking on the one side and your crush on the other. Know the situation: She is married and loves her husband and wants to have babies with him. That means she is not available to be your girlfriend or partner or anything more than a workmate and someone to talk to.

Picture her as a gate that is closed. Picture her with a sign on her that says Married. Unavailable. Will Be Your Friend Only. Picture this sign on her every time you talk with her. Married. Unavailable. Will Be Your Friend Only.

That does not mean you can't have these feelings. It's a crush. It happens. It can be pleasant. Just know what it is. It is not a sign that you should pursue her. It is precisely the opposite.

Got the hots for an unattainable somebody? There's stuff in here about that. (See p. 31.)

Makes a great gift. Can be personalized for the giftee of your choice. Signed first editions on sale now.

What? You want more advice?


Cary Tennis

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