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WIBU - Friend/work dilemma

(23 Posts)
jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 18:43:05

I have a dilemma which I know will probably sound stupid but I get a bit anxious about social things sometimes and overthink stuff other people wouldn't worry about so would appreciate some plain speaking advice!

A few years ago I formed a friendship with a work colleague, B. We used to chat a lot at work, go for lunch most days, travel home together etc. I was going through a very tough time with my then DH and B's friendship meant a lot to me. Anyway, a while later I left for a new job. We kept in touch for a time, but eventually it petered out as these things do - I had a lot going on, lost B's number, and changed my own, B moved and went travelling. This was nearly 4 years ago.

Which brings me to present: I started at a company this week where it turns out B also now works. I've been in for the last 2 days and looked out for B but to no avail. I did see one person who looked vaguely like them, but who didn't try and talk to me so I assumed wasn't. Plus I know appearances change in 4 years but this was quite a drastic change, so I wasn't certain enough to approach them myself.

I'm not sure whether it would seem odd if I ask one of my new colleagues where in the building B is based, especially if B hasn't mentioned knowing me? I'll also feel a bit embarassed if B is the person I mentioned, as they sit not far from me, I'd be worried if I ask that my new colleagues would take me over to say hello, which if B doesnt for whatever reason want to speak to me would be incredibly awkward confused

So WIBU to ask?

Or should I leave it for fear of embarassment? (am tending towards the latter blush)

Yama Thu 06-Dec-12 18:46:04

I have no idea.

Don't feel bad - she can come to you too, you know.

NatashaBee Thu 06-Dec-12 18:46:30

Why on earth don't you just message B via either your work email or facebook and let them know you're working at the same place - and let them find you?

Is B someone you were having an emotional affair with while you were married? If yes and you are with a partner now I would leave it, if you weren't having an EA or it wasn't someone you were interested in then whats the harm in asking?

How do you know B works at this new company?

SundaysGirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:49:25

Yea can't you just find out her email from the system and swing her a friendly 'hey'?

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 18:49:40

Friend is not on FB, and for various reasons, I don't have access to work email. Otherwise that would have been much easier!

tasmaniandevilchaser Thu 06-Dec-12 18:50:53

How will B know you work there? Are these things announced?

Also why wouldn't she want to speak to you? Unless she's super busy and can't talk at that moment?

I think you're over thinking it.

Ps congrats on your new job!

MistressIggi Thu 06-Dec-12 18:52:39

If you leave it, B will assume you are not speaking to him, surely? Why not say to someone "oh I used to know so-and-so in my last job, I believe they work here?". - and so what if they take you over? Is there more to your relationship than you're saying? Even with a former lover, I would expect to say hi if we bumped into eachother in a new job.

SundaysGirl Thu 06-Dec-12 18:53:01

Ah well could you just ask for her extension from the switchboard then and try calling?

I really doubt any reasonable person would see any problem whatsoever with you doing that, she'll probably be really pleased to hear from you smile

And yes ooops I forgot to say well done on the new job grin

Firawla Thu 06-Dec-12 18:54:38

I would ask and go and say hi to them, otherwise it looks like you are avoiding them, which you aren't and there's no hard feelings between you both as far as you know. Asking about her wouldnt seem particularly weird to anyone? i think its the normal thing to do

BodyOfEeyore Thu 06-Dec-12 18:56:45

If that person was B, they may have wondered if you were you iykwim.

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 19:03:43

B would definitely have known it was me, I look almost exactly the same as I did 4 years ago (except slightly older!)

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Thu 06-Dec-12 19:10:33

i would just ask a colleague. and if it is the person you thought it was just say they have changed so much you didn't recognise them (unless it is because they have put on alot of weight or has facial scarring or something they might be self conscious about)

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 19:23:38

I should explain (at the risk of being accused of AIBU by stealth - sorry) that B is male.

He was never anything more than a platonic friend though.

ArkadyRose Thu 06-Dec-12 19:29:33

I'd wait and let B make the first move then, if you're certain he's recognised you.

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 19:34:14

If it was him, he would have known it was me (does that make sense?) I'm just not entirely sure it was him though, as he looked so different. But it has been 4 years I suppose.

Just a bit sad if it was him that he didn't want to speak to me.

SwedishEdith Thu 06-Dec-12 19:38:00

How have you both found out about each other? I'd just casually ask a colleague where B works and then break the ice and say Hi when you see them. Then all this angst is over with. If B is cool towards you, you're not really any worse off than you were before you knew B worked there. If you rekindle a freidnship then = good.

How come there is no internal email system, btw?

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 19:48:07

A friend of a friend (after hearing I had a new job, and where) said they thought he worked there. And I have seen his name on documents etc in the office.

There is an email system, but I just don't have access to it, mainly because I am working as sort of a contractor rather than staff.

Walkacrossthesand Thu 06-Dec-12 20:51:19

Mind if I chip in, jingle? I'm intrigued that you went to some lengths (eg convoluting sentences in OP by using 'they' not (s)he, to conceal the fact that this special friend was a bloke. Now you're tying yourself in knots - obviously desperate to know if he works there without wanting anyone to know that you're asking. Remember that he doesn't know that you know that he works there - so where's the embarrassment? If you don't bump into him - fine. If you do - say hi! I think you'll recognise him - people don't change that much in 4 years! And if he's seen you and not said hi, you have your answer. So you see, you needn't give it another thought! ...unless ther's a back story, hmmmm?

I thought that too walk although OP says nothing happened it does sound like an EA.

BarceyDussell Thu 06-Dec-12 21:02:33

Next time you get a document with his name on it say to a colleague öh, I used to work with a B Xsurname" I wonder if it's the same one, do you know where he sits/what dept he is in? And if it's the guy you've seen just say öh my goodness didn't recognise him/you".

BarceyDussell Thu 06-Dec-12 21:03:18

<damn you, American keyboard>

jinglebellerock Thu 06-Dec-12 22:14:33

I find it embarrassing for same reasons as I would with a female friend, I am quite anxious about people and them liking me, so I don't want new colleagues to think I am weird for asking (I know they wouldn't but it's how my mind works sometimes) or for me to try and speak to him, and he ignore me (which is possibly what he's already done, if it was him I saw).

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