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TherapistMaryAnn
TherapistMaryAnn, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5824
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
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platonic

Resolved Question:

I am middle aged female, married - is it possible that I'm having a totally platonic friendship with someone half my age or am I kidding myself? We talk every day, sometimes very long  conversations about work and other stuff. We both say it's mother-son, my husband says i look flirty when we're together.

Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  TherapistMaryAnn replied 3 years ago.
Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

It is not unusual to feel flattered and interested when a younger person shows you attention. Although you are older than your co worker it does not mean you cannot experience feelings for him. And the fact that he might be awaking feelings in you that you have not felt with your husband for a long time could also be part of it. When you have been married a while, those initial feelings of attraction, interest and feeling on top of the world tend to fade and be replaced with a long term relationship that while not at the same level, offers stability and a deep caring for each other.

It does sound like your relationship with your co worker is platonic, but it may be beginning to have some elements of an intimate relationship. Having him remove your shoes is not something you would ask another co worker to do, so in that way, your relationship is closer than just being co workers.

However, unless you feel you are ready to leave your marriage and begin a relationship with your co worker, it might be best to enjoy your feelings but keep a distance otherwise. And keep your husband involved if that helps. The more he shares in your relationship, the more you will be reminded that you need to maintain boundaries.

It also helps to ask yourself a question each time you consider crossing a boundary with him: would you ask your son or another co worker to do the same thing you are asking this man to do for you? If the answer is no, try to avoid asking him. Rather, focus on work and keeping the relationship on a friendly level.

I hope this has helped you,
Kate





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