Author Topic: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"  (Read 6098 times)

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Moonmaid

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"Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« on: August 14, 2014, 02:12:06 PM »
Hello!

I've been lurking and recently joined because of my co-workers. Well...co-worker.

How does one respond to the following query? I'd like to be polite, yet also get the message across that the question is intrusive and embarrassing.

BG: I work in a corporate office. Mostly women. It is my opinion that the women in the office share too much of their personal lives for an office setting. The lines of appropriate office behavior and personal life behavior get blurred at times. Also, both co-worker and myself have worked there for many years. :End BG

It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago. My sister had flowers delivered to the office. She sends flowers every year. I also started seeing someone new within the last couple of months. When the flowers arrived, co-worker loudly asked, within earshot of most of the office, "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!" She does this every year. I've never had an SO send flowers or gifts to the office.

It should be noted that co-worker is quite bitter about being single.

Now, this is the woman that drove me to this site. I'm sure I'll have other posts about her. But this seemed like the most applicable one to start with since I am really asking for help.

There is no way to answer that question- "are those from him?"- without my response sounding like this:

"Nope, apparently he doesn't love me. I guess my sister loves me, but not HIM."

See what I mean?  Is she doing this on purpose?

I hadn't found this site yet when this happened so I stuttered out something about no, they're from my sister, but I'm sure I'll have something nice waiting for me at home.

I know now that I was under no obligation to explain the intentions and plans of my boyfriend. But what should I have said instead?

These kinds of issues come up all the time. As I'm the receptionist/head office assistant, I have to be nice or at least neutral to everyone. I can't have anyone upset with me.

What say you? How would you have answered?

ladyknight1

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2014, 02:15:01 PM »
The response you should give to any inappropriate question as in the OP, is "No" and bean dip. Saying no is not rude.

Deetee

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2014, 02:17:16 PM »
"No, these are from my sister. Aren't they beautiful?"

I would need more background to understand why the question is at all upsetting as opposed to merely annoying. But my advice is to avoid thinking about our trying to understand any snarky undertones to the question and just answer it.

And maybe not mention that you are seeing anyone.

FlyingBaconMouse

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2014, 02:24:24 PM »
I get flowers at work once a year from someone who, to my coworkers, would be kind of an odd source (nothing shady, just a little socially odd). I handle it by just smiling and saying, "My friends and family take good care of me," because it's all they need to know.

(Technically, I suppose it's more than they need to know, but you get the idea.)
I don't kill threads, but I do seem to stun 'em pretty good. :-)

MorgnsGrl

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2014, 02:34:40 PM »
"Nope, they're from my sister! She sends them every year, remember?" With a look like maybe she's getting a bit forgetful in her advanced age, poor thing.

Raintree

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2014, 02:35:25 PM »
I've had the related, "SO!! What did your SWEETIE get you for your birthday?" when I was dating someone who "didn't believe in gifts" or if it just wasn't the type of relationship where "sweetie" gifts would be exchanged. And it's almost like they would be super disappointed to find out it wasn't some huge bouquet of flowers, or a piece of expensive jewelry, etc etc. Then with such expectations, you don't want to give a truthful answer like, "Well nothing actually; he's busy tonight and I'm heading out with my mother." Lol.

It's just super annoying, I find, though I can't really put my finger on why. Maybe it's because they are making assumptions about the relationship, or making you feel as though it's a lesser relationship if roses and jewelry aren't plopped in front of you at regular intervals.

I like the response, "No, they're from my sister. Aren't they lovely? Must find a vase."

(Though it's likely to be followed up by, "Well what did your SWEETIE get you??" in which case you find a way to beandip).

BeagleMommy

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2014, 02:38:20 PM »
All you really need to say is "no".  It is not rude and it answers her question.

Of course, I tend to be a snarky devilish type so my response would have been "Him?  Which him do you mean?".  Because, frankly, "him" could be my father, my brother, my DH or DS.   >:D

Two Ravens

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2014, 02:38:59 PM »
I guess I really don't understand why this question is so offensive. I've been asked the same thing:

"Oh, are those from your husband?"

"No, from my parents.  :)"

That it would be translated into a jab about how much someone does/does not love you is bewildering to me.

Yvaine

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2014, 02:39:44 PM »
I've had the related, "SO!! What did your SWEETIE get you for your birthday?" when I was dating someone who "didn't believe in gifts" or if it just wasn't the type of relationship where "sweetie" gifts would be exchanged. And it's almost like they would be super disappointed to find out it wasn't some huge bouquet of flowers, or a piece of expensive jewelry, etc etc. Then with such expectations, you don't want to give a truthful answer like, "Well nothing actually; he's busy tonight and I'm heading out with my mother." Lol.

It's just super annoying, I find, though I can't really put my finger on why. Maybe it's because they are making assumptions about the relationship, or making you feel as though it's a lesser relationship if roses and jewelry aren't plopped in front of you at regular intervals.

I like the response, "No, they're from my sister. Aren't they lovely? Must find a vase."

(Though it's likely to be followed up by, "Well what did your SWEETIE get you??" in which case you find a way to beandip).

I know what you mean. I've worked places where there was a lot of Valentine's Day one-upmanship, and at the time I was dating Mr. I Don't Believe in Valentine's Day. (He gets around.)  ;D And the co-workers would push and push and then "aww" and "tsk" if the plans weren't as epic as they hoped. I started just saying "Oh, we're just going to have a low-key dinner" or something, and it wouldn't technically be a lie, even if he was having a low-key dinner with his buddies and I was having a low-key dinner with mine.  ;D

JoieGirl7

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2014, 02:45:35 PM »
You: "Are those from him?!?"

Her: "Who?"

Her: "You know, that guy you've been dating."

You: "No, they're from my sister.  Aren't they lovely?"

Her: "Your sister?"

You: "My sister.  Is there anything else I can help you with?  I have some work I need to get done."


It seems that having a "him" in your life might be something you don't want to talk much about at the office if there are intrusive folks around like her.

Raintree

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2014, 02:47:23 PM »
I've had the related, "SO!! What did your SWEETIE get you for your birthday?" when I was dating someone who "didn't believe in gifts" or if it just wasn't the type of relationship where "sweetie" gifts would be exchanged. And it's almost like they would be super disappointed to find out it wasn't some huge bouquet of flowers, or a piece of expensive jewelry, etc etc. Then with such expectations, you don't want to give a truthful answer like, "Well nothing actually; he's busy tonight and I'm heading out with my mother." Lol.

It's just super annoying, I find, though I can't really put my finger on why. Maybe it's because they are making assumptions about the relationship, or making you feel as though it's a lesser relationship if roses and jewelry aren't plopped in front of you at regular intervals.

I like the response, "No, they're from my sister. Aren't they lovely? Must find a vase."

(Though it's likely to be followed up by, "Well what did your SWEETIE get you??" in which case you find a way to beandip).

I know what you mean. I've worked places where there was a lot of Valentine's Day one-upmanship, and at the time I was dating Mr. I Don't Believe in Valentine's Day. (He gets around.)  ;D And the co-workers would push and push and then "aww" and "tsk" if the plans weren't as epic as they hoped. I started just saying "Oh, we're just going to have a low-key dinner" or something, and it wouldn't technically be a lie, even if he was having a low-key dinner with his buddies and I was having a low-key dinner with mine.  ;D

Ha ha. I'm not a big fan of an occasion that makes (many) men uncomfortable either. Good use of bean dip, or at least, changing the flavour of the bean dip.

I don't think it means I'm taking the comments as a jab, but it puts you in the awkward position of finding something to say if you have nothing big and exciting to report.

lowspark

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2014, 02:51:29 PM »
Wonder if this might shut her up:

--- Ooh! Are those from HIM?!
--- No. They're from HER!


menley

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2014, 02:51:58 PM »
I guess I really don't understand why this question is so offensive. I've been asked the same thing:

"Oh, are those from your husband?"

"No, from my parents.  :)"

That it would be translated into a jab about how much someone does/does not love you is bewildering to me.

I agree. Perhaps there is some background that explains why the OP ascribes this motive to the coworker, but I would simply take it at face value. You received flowers at the office, you are dating someone, so she asked if they were from him. That is a perfectly natural question that I think most people would ask (or assume).

Hillia

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2014, 02:52:23 PM »
I guess I really don't understand why this question is so offensive. I've been asked the same thing:

"Oh, are those from your husband?"

"No, from my parents.  :)"

That it would be translated into a jab about how much someone does/does not love you is bewildering to me.

POD.  While I understand your not wanting to discuss your personal life in the office, I'm not sure that this rises to that level.  Just stating the facts (as above) should be fine.  If someone pursues it, redirect.

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Yvaine

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Re: "Ooh! Are those from HIM?!"
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2014, 02:59:24 PM »
I did get to say once that some flowers were from my dog.  ;D

(They were from a friend who signed the card with the dog's name--I think the occasion was getting through the busy time of year or something.)