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How can I deal with this persistent work colleague?

(13 Posts)
complicatedstory Fri 19-Feb-16 11:16:32

I recently started a new job. One of my colleagues who started a few months before me has been helping me out with tasks and has given me advice on things I need to know.

She is a lot older than me, has recently separated from her husband and lives with her DC and her male cousin. I've always been kind to her as she seems quite vulnerable and erratic with her moods but I've never said anything about going out with her socially.

Recently she added me on Facebook but her behaviour is starting to concern me. She has made friends with everyone from work on there so I thought nothing of it when I received a friend request but since she's added me, she's been messaging me a lot and often at inappropriate times.

Last night she messaged me asking me to come and watch her DC taking part in a race at the weekend (they are SN and it has been organised by a charity) and come for dinner with them afterwards. I found this a bit random as I've never met her family. I truthfully said I had plans but thanked her for the invite.

At 2am, she messaged me saying "oh that's a shame! What about coming the next day for dinner?"

I replied the next morning saying that I couldn't come as I'm busy with family. She sent loads of sad faces and said "well I'll think of another day then and ask again!"

I didn't answer as I barely know her and would rather not go to her house for dinner to be honest. Now she's messaged saying "what about Monday?"

I'm finding this very odd as I prefer to keep work colleagues as casual friends but this woman is being very intense. I want her to stop asking as I don't want to go for dinner with her and her family, but I don't know how to say it in a way that won't offend her as I still have to see her at work.

DoreenLethal Fri 19-Feb-16 11:18:39

Just bat her off. 'No can do - I'm quite busy at home at the moment, I'll let you know when I have a space in my diary. Not likely to be for a while yet'.

Then slowly back away. Smile, nod, be very busy.

Msqueen33 Fri 19-Feb-16 11:20:46

Does she have Sen issues? I'd probably just to be kind but blunt and saying you'd like to be just friends.

StealthPolarBear Fri 19-Feb-16 11:25:26

In fairness to her this is surely how people move from being acquaintes and friends.
not really sure what the best way to handle it is.

ScarletForYa Fri 19-Feb-16 11:33:24

Sounds like she was up late drinking.

TondelayaDellaVentamiglia Fri 19-Feb-16 11:37:06

sort out your facebook settings so she cannot see you are online for chat..i have about 8 people who can actually see if I am online or not.

hownottofuckup Fri 19-Feb-16 11:38:02

Agree with Scarlet, she's just trying toake friends.
Do what Doreen said.

Cabrinha Fri 19-Feb-16 11:59:44

A lot of people see fb messaging as emailing not texting - and therefore there are no inappropriate times!

SwedishEdith Fri 19-Feb-16 12:05:47

This is the risk of adding colleagues to FB. Only add them if they are actual friends.

Just keep saying you're busy. I understand people saying this is how you switch from colleagues to friends but this isn't quite how you do it, surely? With lots of sad faces.

dangerrabbit Fri 19-Feb-16 15:03:28

Maybe speak to her in person and tell her you have a blanket rule of not socialising with current colleagues out of work hours? Then block her.

SolidGoldBrass Fri 19-Feb-16 15:11:35

Just keep being busy. She'll either take the hint or step it up to a point where a quiet word with HR might be in order. You don't owe her out-of-work friendship in any shape or form.

yumscrumfatbum Fri 19-Feb-16 15:14:18

I have an acquaintance like this it's a real pain and it's so hard to avoid being rude. I just kept saying no and she gave up, well kind off. She turns up at my house with stuff for my kids and now her kids are going to the same clubs as mine! She just isn't my kind of person and I just cannot give her what she needs. Super intense!!!!

susiesuesue Fri 19-Feb-16 17:45:26

Why can't you just be honest with her and say thanks for the offer but you prefer to keep work and social life separate. I don't think it's fair to fob her off with 'I'm busy' and expect her to take the hint. If you take the I'm busy approach when she eventually works out that you don't want to socialise she'll probably be more hurt than if you just nip things in the bud quickly and politely now.

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