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New partner's female friends reaction to our relationship

(31 Posts)
jorainbow45 Fri 28-Nov-14 12:19:12

I recently started dating a man I met at work - its been a couple of months and I'm taking things slowly having come out of a 5 years relationship 6 months prior to that. He is friends with another work colleague and they do a lot of organising activities together - many people ask if they are a couple but she is married, albeit unhappily, and they both maintained no even before we started dating. I have chatted to him about their relationships recently and he has said he feels it is more one sided but as he only came to the UK 5 years ago and has few friends outside work he has just allowed it to happen. Last week we went for our first weekend away together and were sauntering on the beach when she started calling. And didn't stop. Then the texts started. After he ignored her we enjoyed the rest of the day but I said maybe you need to tell her you have a girlfriend even if not who (don't want to be open at work just yet). He said he had been answering less texts and as had been spending time with me on evenings wasn't available for her as much. Last night we needed to go to buy something specific for work and as I have the credit card I took him. We stopped off at his house first for a cuppa and were just about to leave when he got a call. I said just answer it its no problem so he did. And she ranted at him for 15 mins having driven to his house and finding my car there. My initial reaction was they must be having an affair - this is not normal behaviour - but he said no. He then told me about how since we had begun chatting more at work (pre any dating) she would slag me off on a professional basis, how ugly I am, how I had an affair with a man from my last job whilst I was married (I divorced in 98!) and so couldn't be trusted at work. He stopped at mine last night and woke up to 35 texts and 5 missed calls. Am I being naïve? surely he would admit it now as if she is woman scorned she would just tell me? One of the men at work does now as we went for a drink with him and he said ' Ill keep it quiet especially from 'her name' which I didn't think anything of at the time but is very odd. How do I deal with this? Sorry for lengthy post sad

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 28-Nov-14 12:31:35

Whether he's having an affair or not is debatable. The 'friend' certainly is. How you deal with it depends on whether you're happy being cast in the role of 'OW' or not. If it were me, I'd be insisting that he does something about her, sets her straight and openly acknowledges your relationship.... or I'd give him & his little shadow up as TMA (Too Much Aggro)

flatbellyfella Fri 28-Nov-14 12:32:14

She sounds very over possessive of their friendship , just stay calm & go about your daily duties as normal. Hopefully he will tell her to stop the bombardment of calls & texts, and tell her you are both an item.

This sounds like sexual harassment to me, regardless of the nature of their previous relationship.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 28-Nov-14 13:11:50

So does she now know that you are the GF having seen your car?

Tbh I would say that he either sets her straight and blocks her number if the crazy behaviour continues, or I would stop dating him. Life is too short for this kind of crap.

ImperialBlether Fri 28-Nov-14 13:14:23

She sounds absolutely nuts to me.

What did he say to her while she was complaining about your car being there? He should really have been furious with her and told her in no uncertain terms that you had every right to be there.

jorainbow45 Fri 28-Nov-14 13:14:49

Thanks for comments so far - I certainly think it's harassment of some kind. My ex partner found out I had started dating again and though was miffed as I had ended it, said he wished me to be happy and to make sure this guy looked after me. That's normal - this IMHO is not. I hope my new chap can be assertive with her but if not, yep Too Much Aggro!!!!

ImperialBlether Fri 28-Nov-14 13:16:41

I would speak privately to the guy you went for a drink with and ask him to clarify what he said about keeping it quiet.

ImperialBlether Fri 28-Nov-14 13:18:15

I think it's probably time for you and he to be out in the open at work, if possible. By hiding the fact you're seeing each other, it can seem as though there's something wrong with what you're doing.

Riverland Fri 28-Nov-14 13:19:43

You shouldn't have to be dealing with this for very long. It's not up to you to have a quiet word with anybody.

Your new bf should deal with it and leave you with no doubts in your mind. If he doesn't, he isn't up to snuff.

HeartsTrumpDiamonds Fri 28-Nov-14 13:21:27

I think she sounds like a completely deluded bunny boiler.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 28-Nov-14 13:25:13

Married or not, she thinks she has first dibs on your boyfriend, that level of texting and calls is harassment. It must be very difficult with you all working at the same place. Without public displays of affection it seems to me you need to let it be known you and he are an item and don't feel you have to hide in a corner.

ImperialBlether Fri 28-Nov-14 13:28:14

I didn't mean she should have a quiet word with the woman, but with the man she and her boyfriend went for a drink with.

Given she doesn't know her boyfriend that well, it would be useful to have someone else's point of view on what's going on. You never know, he may well say that the woman and the OP's boyfriend were having an affair.

LineRunner Fri 28-Nov-14 13:29:55

What did your new partner say back to her on the phone?

Thumbwitch Fri 28-Nov-14 13:33:44

I don't think he's having an affair, but I do think this woman has been using him as an emotional prop! So she sees him as "hers", even though she's married, and can't bear to lose that "prop" which probably gets her through her worse days in her marriage.

She needs to sort her own life out, and accept that your DP has his own and it doesn't include her in any capacity other than "friend" - and if she can't be civil to you, not even that, tbh.

Shades of Glenn Close?

jorainbow45 Fri 28-Nov-14 13:38:15

imperialblether - I did think about doing this - we were also in the pub that is frequented by most staff after work so someone would have said something by now even if it was the landlady who was there and friends with this woman
Line runner - he acknowledged I was there and let her say her piece - I couldn't hear but she sounded furious. He then said he wasn't prepared to discuss it further until she had calmed down and couldn't understand why if she was so good a friend she was reacting in such a way. Just kept reiterating that.
We discussed not hiding things at work but not advertising the fact - we don't work closely so if people ask well say yes if not then no reason to broadcast it. There are two married couples who work there so its not unknown

shaska Fri 28-Nov-14 13:39:41

Sounds to me like they've been seeing eachother, or at least she thinks they have been. Otherwise she's completely insane. But some sort of relationship sounds more likely to me. And he's scared to fess up.

jorainbow45 Fri 28-Nov-14 13:39:46

thumbwitch - my thoughts exactly and I think he now realises that. He is a very genuine caring man so probably didn't think his support would be taken this way.

AndTheBandPlayedOn Fri 28-Nov-14 13:42:08

Disclosure: I am an advocate for not dating men from the workplace.
It is complicated because she is slagging you off at work...presenting herself as a jilted one (whether or not there was an "official" relationship... he has just allowed it to happen suggests more than than he is willing to admit- in this case his not saying "no" meant "yes" to her, perhaps?). The comment from the male work colleague is troubling and a clear warning that she will indeed be a big problem. Drama, and entertainment for the workplace...I just would not like to be a participant in that scenario especially at the place where I earned my living/paycheck.

if she is woman scorned she would just tell me? Her actions are telling you this. It might be considered naive to ignore everything except plain spoken words at face value. I would have this understanding regardless of whether or not they have done the deed as there is clearly a strong emotional attachment.

What if, ultimately, you are not the right person for him, and he treated you this way: Not ending it with you, but clearly moving on with someone else? If he can not say "no", then that is a big problem whether the jilted work colleague is there or not. He has issues setting boundaries, and (I am guessing of course) this may go beyond only being there 5 years and not having many friends awww poor lonely soul hmm .

Imho, you would be best to end it with him and ensure your job, and dignity, are preserved.

AdoraBell Fri 28-Nov-14 13:44:42

He needs to tell her something along the lines of -

This is were there are proffessional relationships and over the side of this line / is my personal life where I choose who I spend my time with. Now fuck off back to your side if you could stop harassing me in my personal life that will make the proffessional relationships in the office easier to manage. And if you won't then I'll have to involve HR because of the harassment.

Or words to that effect.

If he doesn't feel able, or isn't willing, to do so then he may well need to go on the TMA pile.

Isetan Fri 28-Nov-14 13:46:09

He's allowed himself to become this woman's emotional crutch, now that you're on the scene he no longer needs her and she's pissed.

Considering you all work at the same place and you don't want any fall out being blown back your way, you need to tell your boyfriend to call you when he's lost his baggage.

jorainbow45 Fri 28-Nov-14 13:46:15

The only drama to be created at work would be one she creates. I do take all points and need to think things over. Most of my friends met their partners/husbands at work and are all very happy!!! I thought it was the most common place to meet a partner ;)

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 28-Nov-14 13:51:11

Disclosure: I am an advocate for not dating men from the workplace.

Oh me too, up until I met and married DH. confused It was a very big workplace, lots of people, we weren't in the same department... I digress.

Anyway, aside from rage at him, sowing seeds of suspicion is just what she is looking to do. Outsiders may have thought there was something going on for a reason. He may not have considered it an affair if they did not dtd but an emotional affair if not a physical one could be the extreme reason for this reaction.

Hissy Fri 28-Nov-14 14:00:21

If his position is as genuinely clear as he says it is, he needs to have a frank (sensitive) conversation.

1 - that he sees her as a friend ONLY
2 - that he is entitled to live his life as he wishes, with or without her approval/permission
3 - she is married and her behaviour in calling and texting etc is WAY out of line, given the content/tone of her messages
4 - if she can't appreciate the above then friendship will no longer be possible

There is no reason why you and he can't be a couple. she has to deal with it.

If she continues to slag you off, you will need to approach management and report this, before she does some professional damage to you.

AndTheBandPlayedOn Fri 28-Nov-14 14:01:10

Yes, jo, it is she who is creating the drama. But it involves you whether you actively participate or not, refer to Isetan's post regarding any fall out being blown back your way.
I know workplace relationships can work out well. However, having read this board for an embarrassing number of years, there are many ways such relationships can end in disaster. For me, it just is not worth risking one's livelihood.

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