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Colleague's younger wife

(300 Posts)
HootOnTheBeach Thu 31-Mar-16 15:58:12

This is more of a WWYD and maybe some insight into how to cope on a day to day basis.

A colleague of mine is almost 50 and I found out that he dated and subsequently married his 17 year old intern when he was 32. This has seriously coloured my view of him. I know I should just keep my mouth shut and get on with my job. But I have to work with this man and it turns my stomach, every time I look at him all I see is a sleazy, predatory slimeworm. The men at the company see nothing wrong with this set up and in fact snigger in a you-lucky-dog sort of way and joke about keeping him away from the interns.

I try to be as professional and removed as I can be but it's on my mind a lot. He likes to make 'jokes' about forgetting birthdays and anniversaries etc and not getting her a Christmas present - the issue is that these 'jokes' seem to be what actually happens and all I can think is that she doesn't know any other kind of relationship. We are in an open office so I can't help but hear this type of talk regularly.

Please excuse the rambling. I fully appreciate, logically, that this is none of my business but it is affecting my work and I don't know how to deal with it.

EveryoneElsie Thu 31-Mar-16 16:00:24

If you asked HR to have a chat with them about the inappropriate office talk would they know it was you? It sounds like hell.

HootOnTheBeach Thu 31-Mar-16 16:02:17

Elsie the HR manager thinks it's /romantic/ that they've stayed together all this time so I'm not sure how seriously I would be taken?

It is seriously uncomfortable at best.

caroldecker Thu 31-Mar-16 16:04:22

So 18 years ago, she is now a 35 year old and they are still together? Get a grip, hold it tight and let this go.

EveryoneElsie Thu 31-Mar-16 16:06:10

I get what you are saying, its the obnoxious Lads talk, the jokes about treating her like shit.
I'd find that very wearing.
If HR wont help then I'd be job hunting.

Ohfuckaducky Thu 31-Mar-16 16:07:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Thu 31-Mar-16 16:08:01

He's been married almost 20 years and you're taking a moral objection to how he met his wife?

While I might not approve I can't begin to imagine how I would think something that wasn't illegal that happened 20 years ago is any of my business.

I'd pipe up at the comments about interns in a "honestly, do you really think that's an appropriate comment?" and then leave it.

I'm not sure what HR might do? Rescue the wife? I think expecting them to have a conversation you can't yourself is a bit of a cop out. Unless of course there's some highly offensive or sexist language being used routinely in the office in which case make a specific complaint to HR they can investigate but "Dan and Phil are making jokes about keeping Steve away from the interns because his wife (who he has been married to for almost two decades) was an intern when they met" isn't really enough to go on.

Wonderous Thu 31-Mar-16 16:09:34

There are 15 years between me and my husband. Would you call him a sleazy, predatory slimeball? You have no idea what actually goes on in their marriage apart from his jokey comments. They may well have been happily married for the last 15+ years. You seem extraordinarily judgemental.

And as for complaining about him, what has he done apart from joke about his wife?? You need to get a life and keep your nose out of other people's. Here's my first ever biscuit

GlacindaTheTroll Thu 31-Mar-16 16:09:57

Well, if they've been together for 18 years, and he has not been approaching every teenager they be employed since, then the fact that they got together when she was very young is by the by. Couples with a large age gap aren't that uncommon and their relationships can be very successful.

I would not assume that his DW is without friends or a family, and therefore has seen as much of other patterns of relationships as you have seen of hers.

Yes, he sounds like a nightmare when it comes to getting presents, and I wouldn't like to hear someone bang on about it. But I wouldn't make a judgement beyond 'crap present giver' unless there was other stuff apparent as well.

OllyBJolly Thu 31-Mar-16 16:10:14

None of your business and I think if your judgement hangs on the fact they got together at 17 and 32 you are bang out of order. 17 and 32 isn't such a ridiculously huge gap. Many of my friends have greater gaps and have equal, happy relationships.

They have been together 18 years so it's not as if he is serially picking up interns. You can't comment on their relationship based on office gossip.

If you have any complaints it should be about the inappropriate "banter" that's going on in the office. Doesn't sound to me like the 50 year old colleague is the main problem.

Pinkheart5915 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:12:21

I don't understand why him marrying a 17 year old one when he was 32 bothers you some much to cloud your view of him they have been married for 18 years so I guess they both get something out of that marriage.
How about you stop judging a marriage you know nothing about ?

Strokethefurrywall Thu 31-Mar-16 16:13:28

Yes, what CarolDecker said.

Complain about the mindless banter but given that he seems like a happily married man, your disgust seems very out of place. Do you feel the same way about 32 year old Henry Cavill and his 19 year old girlfriend?

He wasn't a 50 year old perving and letching over a 17 year old was he, and given that he's been happily married for some 18 years, I think it's safe to say that your vision of him being "predatory" is very misplaced.

mumofthemonsters808 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:13:30

I think most men would love to attract a young woman, I'm with you though and would regard him as a slime ball. I imagine he is also very wealthy which helps explain why at 17 she even entertained an older man. It's strange how the age gap does not seem so severe 18 years on.

corythatwas Thu 31-Mar-16 16:13:31

I married my first boyfriend, a man I met when I was 19. It seriously does not mean that at 52 I know nothing about how other relationships work: there's a big world out there and it is, you know, full of people. I talk to some of them.

FauxFox Thu 31-Mar-16 16:14:05

This could not be less of your business. If he is being inappropriate with young staff now fair enough, but how/when he met his wife and what sort of relationship they have is between them. Why are you so bothered? confused

AuntieStella Thu 31-Mar-16 16:14:35

"If you have any complaints it should be about the inappropriate "banter" that's going on in the office. Doesn't sound to me like the 50 year old colleague is the main problem."

Yes, I think that is the key point. The problem is with the sleazy talk of those colleagues.

PPie10 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:14:51

Wow you really need to but out and get your own life. This has nothing to do with you. You need to keep to a work relationship and not be so invested in his personal life. What do you think hr should do.??

Theimpossiblegirl Thu 31-Mar-16 16:15:13

To be honest, I think you need to get over it or leave. They have been together years. He sounds like a bit of an idiot but it's lad's banter about being crap with presents, not my cup of tea but none of your business. It might not even be true, he could be a really nice, flower giving, wife-treating family man.

There is an age gap between me and my DH. He was my boss and I was 19 when we met. He was not a predatory slimeball and he hasn't spent the last 20 years chasing teenagers either. Not every age gap relationship is grooming/one-sided/predatory.

Crabbitface Thu 31-Mar-16 16:16:57


None of your business. I suggest if it bothers you so much that your boss is married to 35 year old woman, you find a new job.

duckyneedsaclean Thu 31-Mar-16 16:19:26

Get over it.

HootOnTheBeach Thu 31-Mar-16 16:20:24

I am keeping it professional. But the endless "hahaha she had to get a new job, couldn't be seen carrying on with my intern" and other little comments - it's just so disrespectful and I don't imagine she knows how he speaks about her. Not to mention that he was her boss at the time and thought this was OK.

I agree with you all, it isn't my business, but it is affecting me and making be feel sick, and I posted for advice on what to do, not to debate age gaps.

WitchyPoos Thu 31-Mar-16 16:20:54

I don't see the issue tbh.
Loads of people have big age gaps and stay together. Know a few couples with big age gaps and it's never really crossed my mind as an issue. Cos it's none of my business and if they are happy so what?

lorelei9here Thu 31-Mar-16 16:22:52

I am mystified why the age gap has anything to do with your feelings

I don't like that kind of "bantz" either but it doesn't sound like it's crossing any lines, so all I can do is suggest you get a grip.

PPie10 Thu 31-Mar-16 16:22:56

Makes you feel sick? A bit dramatic.
You don't know her, why all the angst and upset on her behalf? Ignore them and you will stop feeling sick.

PlaymobilPirate Thu 31-Mar-16 16:23:18

You're looking for an issue where there isn't one. The man's marriage is nothing to do with you.

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