Advice on how to handle a difficult woman

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  1. Advice on how to handle a difficult woman

    Hey guys,

    This is my first post here, and it's about a woman I don't even want to date or have sex with (but I did want to at one point). I just want to know the best way to resolve some hostility/bullshit that's developed here, and I figured this would be a good forum to ask because of its emphasis on social relationships. It's a bit of a doozy, so venture on if you dare... (Details changed to protect the guilty.)

    A few years back I got a job at a large, well-known company on the east coast. My first day of work I met Marie, an outgoing, direct, and physically/personality-wise very hot woman, who as it turned out was on the same work assignment as me. I was immediately attracted to her and hit on her, but she laughed and said we were "just friends", and informed me she had a boyfriend in another state, which was true. Nonetheless we would spend a fair amount of time together at work and would frequently text each other, to the point my officemate at the time thought we were dating. However, as much as her charisma and looks had me "hooked" back then, I pretty quickly noticed that she could be rather dishonest, disrespectful, and unreliable, and at times seemed to take pleasure in cutting people down and other cruel behavior. I also gathered the impression (although with no direct evidence) that she was probably cheating on her boyfriend. Throughout this early period of our friendship she would sometimes casually throw out cutting remarks/name-calling at me, or try to hypocritically try to berate me over something which didn't deserve it and which wasn't her place to berate me for; I say hypocritical because it was often about something she was as bad as I was about or worse (e.g., being late to a meeting). But otherwise she could be charming, engaging, and a lot of fun to be around. Nonetheless her bad behavior persisted until it culminated in a public blowout: We were at a gathering of other employees to watch a movie and convene for games and socializing afterwards. I was making an attempt to be unusually charming and sociable (my default was kinda shy and reserved at the time) and largely succeeding during the movie, which she may have resented because she felt I was standing in her spotlight. Then during boardgames I was flirting with another woman from work and Marie totally flipped her shit. She yelled at me and called me some really nasty names with the whole nostrils flaring and bug-eyed insanity bit. I was really taken aback and it hurt a lot at the time, to be honest. But almost as soon as she had done it, she almost acted like it hadn't happened and tried to smooth things over by talking with me and the group in a casual way. However, she didn't apologize.

    After this I tried to avoid her, and any chance encounters at work were largely her trying to insult me and me trying my best to ignore her. I was pissed at her to the point that it really bothered me. I also was chagrined that I had let this bitch get under my skin. Our relationship stayed unfriendly until ... maybe a year later, when she grudgingly gave me a compliment on a work-related achievement. Grudgingly because she had made it repeatedly clear to me that she was jealous of how well I was doing at work. I thanked her for the compliment and our relationship entered rapprochement. We weren't on the same assignment anymore so we didn't see each other as much as we used to, but we were at least friendly towards each other. At some point during the winter she asked if I'd like to get together with her "somewhere warm" where we could talk; I was dating someone else at the time I really liked and/or had simply decided we should never, under any circumstances, date each other, so I declined her offer. Maybe a half-year later she broke up with her out-of-state boyfriend and started dating my then-best male friend from work. I lost contact with her that summer until near the end, when out of the blue she called up sobbing. She was clearly in major distress and was somewhat incoherent; it turned out she had suffered a major personal tragedy. She knew I had conquered depression earlier in my life and wanted to know how I did it. She was desperately seeking comfort. I told her I liked her (true). She seemed very touched by this and when she told me "thank you" she almost sounded like a little girl.

    Thus began the "honeymoon" phase of our (non-romantic) relationship. She, her boyfriend, and I would get together frequently for dinner and a movie. She even threw a surprise birthday party for me. If she, I, and another man were in the same room together, she would almost exclusively pay attention to me (no matter how much the other guy would try to "out-alpha" me to get her attention). It was a little embarrassing to be honest. After about a year of this I went to an out-of-state conference to which she asked me to go with her, claiming she would feel uncomfortable without me there because of one of the attending managers. The night we arrived at the hotel (we had separate rooms in case that wasn't clear) we walked to a nearby store for food; along the way she was startled by what we thought was a homeless man and ended up putting her arm in mine. (I didn't encourage this.) Found out later her boyfriend was upset that we had walked there together. We hung out with each other most of the conference.

    That happened about half a year ago. It's now been a fair while since I've gotten together with her & her bf. So you're asking what's my issue... For one, when I talk to her now she'll often call me "girlfriend!", which seems like an annoying attempt to emasculate me, to which I've started replying, "Hey, duder!" (trying to keep it playful/friendly). I don't generally try to communicate with her much, but she does stop by my office almost every day to talk with my current officemate, Dave, who is my current best male friend at work. The two of them have started an independent group for fellow coworkers looking to get up to speed on advanced research. She asked me to join but I didn't feel I could commit the time to it, which probably disappointed her (she gave me the "not mad" response, basically). Well, when she stops by to talk to Dave she will fairly frequently try to put me down, either by calling me a name or insulting something I like, etc. I mostly try to stay out of the conversation, and she has several times come over to where I'm sitting and put her hand on my shoulder and given me little "shakes". Or maybe she'll try to make an unfunny "joke" at my expense which is practically dripping with hostility and malice. Generally, I handle these things pretty well (I'll say something dismissive like, "Hey now" or generally ignore it or treat it with good humor). When I handle her BS well, if I see her a little while later in the hall or whatnot she'll often look pissed, I think because I didn't let her get under my skin?

    So, although I think generally I'm handling Marie pretty well, I'd like to cut out her hostility in my life so I don't have to deal with it any longer, or get to the point where I can definitively deal with it, with practically no hassle.

    Guys, please help me figure out:

    How do I

    a) Win Marie over again so she is respectful and not an annoyance.

    or

    b) "Put her in her place", again so that she's no longer an annoyance.

    ?

    Again, I want nothing to do with Marie sexually or romantically.

    Thanks,
    Skynaut



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Gender:
    Location
    London
    Posts
    694

    What the fuck is wrong with you.
    You're writing a massive long post on a forum about a woman you have no romantic interest in (so you claim) regarding how to handle her treating you like dirt.

    You must have very little self respect. This shouldn't be about her, it should be all about you and why you have such little respect for yourself that you keep opening the door to such a toxic person like this.

    For what it's worth, this girl is toxic and bad news but the real issue here that is glaring and stands out like a sore thumb is YOU and your own lack of self respect.

    Jesus fuck dude, I can't believe what I just read.

    Read No More Mr Nice Guy and Pulling Your Own Strings and start standing up for yourself and having standards of behaviour you hold people to.
    Vox - Love Systems Instructor
    -------------------------------------------------

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  3. #3

    Life advice not dating advice. She's harassing you. Go to your HR department and make a formal complaint. Ask to be transferred or for her to be moved.

    A lack of respect comes from a lack of boundaries.

  4. I actually think she likes you, and putting you down is her way of getting your attention.

    But she's definitely not the type of woman a good man should be going for. You really just need to stand up for yourself. I think you've been doing too much deflecting of her hostility. Voice it out to her with specific examples, and tell her this needs to stop. You need to have absolute conviction when doing so. There's no "how", you just gotta do it.

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