Author Topic: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not. New prob pg3.  (Read 9797 times)

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Alias

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A bit of a funny email recently, thought I’d get opinions on it.  I’m putting this in ‘day’s work’ rather than wedding because the problem is about the co-workers, not the wedding. It could be any event.

Background:
I work for a large company, around 2000 employees. A friend from school, Candy, works here as well.  She works in Finance, I work in Sales, so we don’t actually have anything to do with each other in a business capacity.  Candy met one of my co-workers from Sales (someone I don’t work directly with, and didn’t know at the time) and they since started going out and are getting married.  They also don’t have anything to do with each other within the business.  There is no rule, written or unwritten, about inter office romances - there are many and they are accepted.

Candy has kept the relationship very quiet around the office.  Her co-workers know she’s in a relationship, his first name, and now that she’s getting married.  They do not know he works in another department of the company.  A few people in my area have twigged the relationship and made comments about the groom ‘marrying up’ (the worst I know of is ‘she might come to her senses before the wedding’, basically people have a higher opinion of Candy than her fiancé. They both know this.)  Some people know I know Candy and am invited to the wedding as a friend. No other co-workers are invited from either side.

Today I got an email from Candy:
‘I just wanted to ask that you please don’t know any photos of myself and [fiancé] to people in work! I don’t mind you showing a photo of me, but I really don’t want people to see me and [fiancé].  Maybe you could bluff and say you didn’t get any of us together, or you don’t have your camera with you, or whatever. And maybe avoid putting photos on facebook if you’re friend with people from work!  Sorry to sound Bridezilla, I just don’t need the hassle!’

So is this a reasonable request?  Is she reasonable to think she can continue to hide her relationship (and marriage!) from the entire company?  Or should she just suck it up, take the slagging, and move on?
« Last Edit: June 25, 2013, 05:02:52 AM by Alias »

Shoo

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2013, 10:55:57 AM »
I can't imagine why you'd be showing photos of Candy's wedding anyway, but I don't think her request is unreasonable  at all.  She wants to keep her private life private, and that's her business, nobody else's.  It doesn't sound like she's trying to hide her marriage from the company, just from the busy bodies who want to gossip about her.  I don't blame her a bit.

Kiwichick

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2013, 10:57:05 AM »
I don't think her request is unreasonable, her possible expectation that she can keep her marriage secret is another matter entirely :)

Alias

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2013, 11:01:08 AM »
I can't imagine why you'd be showing photos of Candy's wedding anyway, but I don't think her request is unreasonable  at all.  She wants to keep her private life private, and that's her business, nobody else's.  It doesn't sound like she's trying to hide her marriage from the company, just from the busy bodies who want to gossip about her.  I don't blame her a bit.

That's probably part of why I thought it so odd - it never occurred to me to show my coworker pics of a wedding I'm at (even when they know the groom!) or put them on facebook.

As for keeping it hidden, AFAIK she still has her contact details as her parents house so that they don't have the same address on file.  She won't change her name to his because they 'work together'.  I do think she is trying to keep it hidden.

NyaChan

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2013, 11:02:31 AM »
I can't imagine why you'd be showing photos of Candy's wedding anyway, but I don't think her request is unreasonable  at all.  She wants to keep her private life private, and that's her business, nobody else's.  It doesn't sound like she's trying to hide her marriage from the company, just from the busy bodies who want to gossip about her.  I don't blame her a bit.

This.  It isn't unreasonable to ask a friend to help protect her from people who are gossiping from her.  I'm not seeing that they are hiding their marriage at all.  They aren't pretending not to be dating or getting married - they simply aren't talking about it in the workplace which is IMO entirely appropriate.  I don't know why you would show the people who have been unkind to Cindy and her fiance these pictures anyways, though really, even if they weren't unkind, why show them pictures of something they were not invited to? 

Saw your additional information - I can see why she would think to mention something.  These days people post pictures of everything online and can so easily pull up photos on their phones, that I can understand why she'd want to be careful about it.  Also, I don't think it is all that unusual for a husband and wife to want to be treated as separate professionals in the workplace rather than have it be known that they are a couple.  I only found out that at least 2 sets of my professors were married to one another my last year of school, and even then it was only because there were rumors of a student affair in one marriage and an invite to the home of the other couple for a party.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 11:06:11 AM by NyaChan »

Shoo

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2013, 11:05:23 AM »
I can't imagine why you'd be showing photos of Candy's wedding anyway, but I don't think her request is unreasonable  at all.  She wants to keep her private life private, and that's her business, nobody else's.  It doesn't sound like she's trying to hide her marriage from the company, just from the busy bodies who want to gossip about her.  I don't blame her a bit.

That's probably part of why I thought it so odd - it never occurred to me to show my coworker pics of a wedding I'm at (even when they know the groom!) or put them on facebook.

As for keeping it hidden, AFAIK she still has her contact details as her parents house so that they don't have the same address on file.  She won't change her name to his because they 'work together'.  I do think she is trying to keep it hidden.


It may be unrealistic, but.....so what?  It's what she wants to do.  I guess I don't understand your question.  There's nothing wrong with her wanting to keep it private.  You keep using the word "hidden" though, and that bothers me a little.  Hidden, private, whatever, it's her relationship and if she doesn't want it advertised to everyone at work, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.  In fact, I can totally understand WHY she'd want to since she seems to be the topic of gossip and fodder.  As a friend, I think you should support this decision.

lowspark

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2013, 11:08:06 AM »
I agree. It shouldn't be hard at all to comply with her request. It's what she wants, it's not unreasonable or difficult, so I'd just go along with it.

Realistically, it's inevitable that people will figure out they are married eventually. But that's for her to deal with.

Cz. Burrito

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2013, 11:09:07 AM »
I think her request is reasonable, if not her expectation that she can keep her marriage quiet.  But that latter bit is up to her to deal with.  I'd honor her request.

Cz. Burrito

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2013, 11:10:31 AM »
I can't imagine why you'd be showing photos of Candy's wedding anyway, but I don't think her request is unreasonable  at all.  She wants to keep her private life private, and that's her business, nobody else's.  It doesn't sound like she's trying to hide her marriage from the company, just from the busy bodies who want to gossip about her.  I don't blame her a bit.

That's probably part of why I thought it so odd - it never occurred to me to show my coworker pics of a wedding I'm at (even when they know the groom!) or put them on facebook.

As for keeping it hidden, AFAIK she still has her contact details as her parents house so that they don't have the same address on file.  She won't change her name to his because they 'work together'.  I do think she is trying to keep it hidden.

I've seen too many cases of "well, no, I didn't tell them not to do XXX because I never thought they would!"  She's decided that this is important enough to her to cover even the most unlikely of bases.

TurtleDove

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2013, 11:11:38 AM »
A few people in my area have twigged the relationship and made comments about the groom ‘marrying up’ (the worst I know of is ‘she might come to her senses before the wedding’, basically people have a higher opinion of Candy than her fiancé. They both know this.) 

This would really offend me if I were Candy or her groom.  I don't understand while Candy and her groom would tacitly allow such offensive opinions to flourish by giving off the impression Candy is embarrassed of the union.

cwm

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2013, 11:12:37 AM »
That sounds perfectly reasonable to me. I mean, if you've kept quiet about their rel@tionship so far, then why is this any different? If Candy and her HTB talk with each other and decide to bring their status into the open, that's their decision to make. It sounds to me like all she's asking you to do is maintain the "secret" she's had already, which is what you've been doing by not telling anyone that they were seeing each other in the first place.

I think in this case, work and home are totally separate. If Candy and  HTB can maintain separation of work and home lives and not intermingle the two, then congratulations to them. It's not easy, but if they don't work in the same department then it could be very feasible.

My sister and her (now ex) husband worked for the same company. The only reason that one of them transferred when they got married was that he was a manager. If they were on the same level, they could have stayed. They decided not to hide it because other people knew, but if they had wanted to, it would have been their decision. As long as Candy and HTB inform HR about their new status (if your company requires it, some do and some don't), then I don't see any problem here.

Amava

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2013, 11:17:08 AM »
I really don't understand this. As the fiance, I would be seriously reconsidering getting married to someone who seems so ashamed of me that she wants to hide me.

dawbs

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2013, 11:22:11 AM »
I really don't understand this. As the fiance, I would be seriously reconsidering getting married to someone who seems so ashamed of me that she wants to hide me.

That's one interpretation of it.
But there's the "I want to be treated as an employee, not X's spouse" angle that could also be an explanation.

(once a year, I run a big event at work.  My husband is one of our 50 'supervising volunteers' and comes in to help for the day.  99% of the people we interact with don't know that 1-in this particular instance, I'm his 'boss' and 2-he's my husband.  Because when people find out he's my husband they tend to assume he's the man in charge and they make all *sorts* of assumptions about both of our qualifications.  I'm not ashamed of him, in the least...but our personal relationship isn't relevant to my work; so it doesn't 'show' at work)

We don't know this person's motivations.

Amara

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2013, 11:26:22 AM »
I agree that the reason for her request is privacy rather than shame. She undoubtedly knows it will come out at some point, but to the degree she can she'd like to keep her private life private. It's a simple friendly request.

Alias

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Re: Keeping work and home seperate when they're not.
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2013, 11:31:26 AM »
This would really offend me if I were Candy or her groom.  I don't understand while Candy and her groom would tacitly allow such offensive opinions to flourish by giving off the impression Candy is embarrassed of the union.

That's another part of it alright, it comes across that Candy is embarrassed by him.

It may be unrealistic, but.....so what?  It's what she wants to do.  I guess I don't understand your question.  There's nothing wrong with her wanting to keep it private.  You keep using the word "hidden" though, and that bothers me a little.  Hidden, private, whatever, it's her relationship and if she doesn't want it advertised to everyone at work, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.  In fact, I can totally understand WHY she'd want to since she seems to be the topic of gossip and fodder.  As a friend, I think you should support this decision.

I have supported this decision, and done my best to bean dip when either of them is mentioned to me in a non-work capacity.  However my boss asked me directly if they were seeing eachother (in a way that told me he already knew the answer) and I'm not going to lie for her.  At the time I told my boss she wants to be quiet about it because her boss wouldn't approve.  I doubt he has respected this, but it was the best I could do for her.  I think trying to hide something she knows is public (I made her aware by boss knows) does add to the gossip a bit.