Embarrassing Work Issue, please help

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Joby, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. Joby

    Joby Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Nov 1, 2001
    I have what feels like an embarrassing issue at my office and I would like to air it out and get opinions from my fellow TrekBBsers. I've been employed at my work for many years now, I'm a guy and most of my co-workers are female. Well a few months ago we got another new male co-worker named Paul. Paul is a really nice guy, I like him, and there's the problem, he's a great guy. He's so great a guy it can be damn annoying at times, but you still can't help but like him. As for his appearance he's not incredibly handsome, but he is in good shape. Paul isn't a ripped big beefy guy, but he's far better muscularly defined then I am, as well as a little taller then me. The women at my office often and repeatedly swoon over him without any shame and have constant chatter about him and how terrific he is. It's like he's got his own office groupies or fan club.

    Yeah you guessed it, I feel neglected, embarrassed and flat out left out by this crap. :( Now my co-workers do like me, I'm a nice guy myself and I can tell they are quite fond of me as I have been working with them for several years now. But Paul really is a more fun guy, he's always doing something, has a ton of friends and loads of interesting stories to tell. Paul's an all around great guy and he hits the gym far more regularly then I do. My women co-workers have always been fond of me more as a brother, and that was something I didn't think much of for years. I mean they are all either married or with boyfriends of their own, so what did I care what they thought. It's only when Paul showed up that I started to really think about these things and it became apparent how wildly different I am percieved and treated. They give him these stary eyed, dreamy looks, and often speak about how wonderful a guy he is. Sometimes I get angry at the women at my work, don't know they know any better to put on such a display? Every now and then I can tell one or two of them realize they may be going over the top, especially since I'm around and I get none of that attention, so they tone it down a bit. But most of them don't. I imagine if we were all men and there were only a couple of women and we all put one girl up on a pedastal, and left the other out we'd be seen as sexist neanderthal bastards. A couple of them hang out with him, facebook him and phone him...while I've worked with them for years and we've never gotten that close. And we're all around the same age bracket, 20s and 30s.

    I would like opinions on this matter. Do you think I'm being immature or silly to feel so embarrassed and so neglected? What should I do? My boss is a female and she swoons over him too. I've got to fight off feelings of jealousy and resentment to Paul, I mean it's not his fault that they all love him. Nor is it his fault that I'm not nearly as social as he is. And he really is a fucking great guy, I've never once seen anyone be angry with him, even the couple other men that once in a while pop up at the area think he's awesome. This dude could make friends with Al-Qaeda. What makes me often feel lousy is that he is better then me in many areas, since I am male I was the "office handyman" to speak for years, well Paul turns out to be a better handyman then I am and the boss goes to him now instead of me to do minor fix it things...it really emasculates me and a couple of the women noticed that he's the new handyman and poked fun at me for it. I'm not sure they realized how much it burned me. Paul is also a better techno geek then I am, so when there are computer software issues, well fuck he's the man to go to. I have now realized that I DO have a resentment to him, as much as I kid myself into believing I don't. And I do try to not resent him, but he probably goes to the toilet better then I do. It's like being in that Family Guy episode where that new dog that everyone loved b/c he was so perfect came and replaced Brian. This does effect my feelings in the work enviornment, and it's really shitty to be at work some days, actually many days. :confused: If we had other guys around it wouldn't be so bad, but since it's just me and him and a bunch of ladies, I feel sooooo left out. I don't think the girls grasp how awful I feel over all this. Many days I find myself eating lunch in anywhere but our breakroom, just to get a bit of fresh air and escape from the Paul groupies at work.

    What would you do? Should I talk to my female co-workers on the matter and risk humiliation? Should I do my best to ignore it? Please don't say try to hang out with Paul and pick up his skills of being so great, as I see that as a potential answer I'd get and right now I'd rather not do that.
  2. Flying Spaghetti Monster

    Flying Spaghetti Monster Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jul 18, 2006
    Flying Spaghetti Western
    Don't worry about what other people think of you. That's high school stuff going on, especially if they are all "taken" anyway. Just do your job and in 8 hrs it will be done.
  3. Tribbles

    Tribbles Commander Red Shirt

    Joby! I wish I could hug you or offer some sage wisdom. The best I can do is sympathize, I'm afraid. I don't think what you're feeling is immature or petty; most people want to be accepted and loved. I'm a girl, but if I were in this situation, I know I would feel jealous even if I tried very hard not to care.

    Unfortunately, I don't think confronting anyone about the issue would help. I think it may just make things awkward unless there were things seriously out-of-line going on (meaning clearly inappropriate physical contact or lewd implications). If it's just basic playful flirting, it's likely anyone you talk to will deny any allegations, and it certainly wouldn't endear you to them.

    I have a hard time getting close to co-workers, too, so I wouldn't be the one to tell you to try to squeeze your way into their social groups. But maybe chatting on facebook could help? That's an easy step to form slightly stronger bonds with people. I know you mention that Paul has one. Maybe you could pretend not to know much about it and ask him or one of the girls how to set one up, and I'm sure they'd add you. Then the other coworkers would see that person added you as a friend, and they'd probably add you too...

    Sorry for your situation. :( I hope it gets better for you.
  4. Kestra

    Kestra Admiral Premium Member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Wow, that sounds really miserable. Sorry to hear you have to deal with a situation like that; I can tell the toll it's taking on your self-esteem.

    If there's some sort of sexual harassment type scenario that's going on, you should definitely speak up. At least talk to your boss about it. For all you know, Paul could be just as uncomfortable. I know I would be! Some of your female colleagues may be embarrassed by their coworkers as well, and that's not a good work environment for anyone. You just have to be aware of the tension this might create.

    The thing is, there's always going to be someone like this guy. Someone who is more skilled, or more intelligent, or more charming, or better looking, etc. Or at least appears to be. You need to focus on your own strengths because you do have positive things unique to you. Also, I wouldn't suggest competing for attention but instead, perhaps try renewing your friendship with some of your coworkers? Focusing on these relationships and your own self-confidence are things you can control. Paul and other people's reactions to him are things that are out of your control. Try to keep focused.

    But once again I would definitely suggest speaking to your boss if you are in a work environment that you believe is unprofessional. I don't know what kind of job you have and what things are like, so you'll have to weigh the pros and cons there yourself. Hope things go well for you! :)
  5. freak

    freak Commodore Commodore

    Nov 17, 2005
    stationed at NCIS post Voyager.
    So sorry to read about this situation in your workplace. The thing I would do is to try to not let it bother me. I know that that one thing is definitely difficult to do though. I'm a female myself and I always have issues when it comes to women who are better looking than I am and especially way thinner than I am!..everybody fights for position..everybody wants to be seen..AND heard. For me, it's a big acceptance issue. I get really bothered about what people think of me. I know tonight was an example cause although it was my bday and I was dressed up, a lot of people(including women!) looked at me with what I call "evil eyes". Some of the women were probably thinking: look at that fat ass girl who think she's thin! She's a freaking cow! There were women there that were way thinner and extremely more beautiful than I will EVER be!
    Anyway, I'd also would speak to the boss..pull her aside one day and say: look we've got this issue we need to discuss...just tell her what you told us..maybe see her side of things.
  6. The Boy Who Cried Worf

    The Boy Who Cried Worf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jul 12, 2008
    It sounds like you have deeper issues. Like maybe you are lonely or missing out on something. People who go home to happy homes don't generally have these kind of resentments. Do you have a girlfriend? An active social life? If not, well look at the calendar. Think maybe this month has something to do with how you're feeling? I think this issue is all about you and things maybe you aren't facing up to. Sorry to be so blunt, but that's just the impression I got.
  7. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

    May 3, 2001
    On the destruct button until the last minute!
    Do you live in a sitcom?

    Become friends with Paul. You might need his help next week after you accidentally kill your supervisor's favorite goldfish and need to find an identical replacement.
  8. Braxton

    Braxton Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Mar 9, 2004
    Twin Cities, Minnesota, USA
    You need to accept the new reality or your resentment will consume you. It is hard to not feel wanted when everyone used to come to you now goes to someone else. I share your position but not with new co-workers, just the fact that I got them to do things on their own and now I kind of regret it but I am learning to accept it. He's also new so your co-workers are going to swarm over him because there is finally another male in the office. Women are like men in that they like to look at guys as much as we like to look at girls. Since you were the only or only one of the few guys in the office, this guy is going to get the attention for a while simply because he's new. It also sounds like you're dull/boring compared to him. Maybe it's time you start doing something about that.
  9. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

    Apr 14, 2003
    Norfolk, VA
    A job is a job. Sure it can be fun and you can work with great people, but it still is a job at the end of the day. That means that the primary focus shouldn't be about who likes who. Before this other guy arrived, you said you didn't really have any thoughts about going out with these other people, so now that he's there, it shouldn't really change anything. Likewise, the fact that they don't rely on you for handyman type stuff shouldn't be seen as a shot to your manhood, but a chance to do less work.

    Once again, it's just a job, there's no reason to be jealous of another co-worker. If you find out it's affecting your ability to work there, find a new job. Otherwise, just try to get to know the guy. It's not like you guys are rivals, you're just co-workers.
  10. Commander Rabbit

    Commander Rabbit Commander

    Dec 8, 2008
    Herein lies the main problem. She is setting the tone for the entire staff, and that tone is entirely unprofessional. A supervisor should NEVER swoon over, flirt w/ or gossip about a subordinate.

    I definitely understand and relate to your feelings. However, the solution probably lies in creating more of a life for yourself outside work, rather than expecting anything change at work.
  11. John Picard

    John Picard Vice Admiral Admiral

    I recommend you get back at this new guy by having angry sex with *ALL* of the women in the office. Don't do them all at once -- stretch it out over a period of months. Eventually, he'll get the message.
  12. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

    Sep 4, 2008
    Just around the bend.
    I'd say go ahead and ask him out. You have just as much right as the women in the office to chase him.
  13. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Commodore

    Mar 8, 2009
    New York City
    co-worker issue

    Hopefully your friends are more important to you than your co-workers.

    Flying Spaghetti Monster It really doesn't matter why. We can't like all our co-workers.

    Check out this book: "The Cubible Survival Guide; Keeping Your Cool in the Least Hospitable Environment on Earth" by James F Thompson. (c)2007 I got it for $10. retail. It may give you a couple thoughts on co-workers.

    Not that you say you do but some choose to fraternize so much with co-workers that these people become their close friends and that makes for awkward situations and conflicts of interest.

    You are there to make money.

    Work to live not live to work...
    Make your money and go home.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2009
  14. Spot's Meow

    Spot's Meow Vice Admiral Premium Member

    Jul 1, 2004
    Hotel California
    Re: co-worker issue

    He's shiny and new, it will wear off. There's only so long they can go on swooning before they get tired of it and move on to something else. After a few months everything will have settled down and both you and Paul will occupy new roles in the office - neither one better than the other, just different. If they really do view you more as a brother than potential mate, that can have it's advantages. They are much more likely to come to you for serious advice than Paul.

    Also, nobody is perfect, including Paul. In time his faults will come out. He may really be a great guy, but he's not you. And nobody can replace you and your talents and worth. The women in the office know this deep down, they're just having their fun right now. The newness will wear off. And then down the road, when another new guy is hired, you and Paul can get together and lament about how everyone is swooning over him.
  15. Holdfast

    Holdfast Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Feb 19, 2000
    17 Cherry Tree Lane
    ^ My first thought on reading the OP. :lol:

    ^ My second thought on reading the OP. :lol: :lol:

    Paul sounds a nice guy, but he's totally alpha'ed you and it's knocked your self-esteem. Don't hate him for your own feelings about it, that leads to the dark side and associated breathing difficulties. Focus on doing stuff that makes you feel good.

    Alternatively, arrange for a professional hit on Paul that results in his permanent retirement. Depending on your psyche, that may also make you feel good.
  16. trampledamage

    trampledamage Clone Moderator

    Sep 11, 2005
    hitching a ride to Erebor

    But anyway, back to the point - Paul might be finding all this attention as annoying as you do. He's there to work too, he's not there just for the women's amusement. Just try to treat him like you would if there were none of the women there, make friends and above all be a professional work colleague.
  17. An Officer

    An Officer Vice Admiral Admiral

    May 14, 2002
    Reality & Other Falsehoods
    It will all blow over in a few weeks, when the novelty wears off. When you accept it's not a permanent situation, you'll feel better. And in the meantime, it doesn't hurt to boost your confidence which ever way you can, by taking care of yourself as much as possible, in terms of health, fitness, general presentation, and enjoyable hobbies to entertain yourself and others.

    Get rid of the jealousy, it's a basement emotion, not to mention a self destructive spiral. Lift yourself up a little and be happy that you have a possible new friend at the office. Someone to break up all that oestrogen in the air. :p Most people complain about long boring days at work, looks like there's someone there to shake it all up for you - enjoy the ride. I bet that you would see that it's entertaining, if you could allow yourself to be a little more objective. :D
  18. Australis

    Australis Writer Admiral

    Mar 12, 2005
    I skimmed the original post. I get it.

    It's a confidence issue. Feel more confident in yourself and the women (THE WOMEN!) will come to you. Don't hang around looking deperate.

    When I was 20 I couldn't get a gf to save my life. SO I stopped trying. ANd because I was more relaxed, I did get one, and had to beat off 3 or 4 more (I'm a one-person person kinda person. :D ) Just relax, find the good and better parts of yourself, and it'll be okay. Don't worry about the other guy, you'll come out of his shadow eventually if you shine yourself. Good luck.
  19. Tim

    Tim Vice Admiral Admiral

    Mar 25, 2005
    Red Sox Nation
    My solution to such difficulties is to not give a shit what my co-workers think about me on that level. I'm there to do a job. I take pains to be diligent and competent and am interested in my co-workers opinions only insofar as it pertains to those aspects of my work performance.

    Plus, there's a chance that alpha-boy will get over-confident, dip his pen in the company ink-well, and have a meteoric fall from grace. Insidious laughter would then ensue on your part.
  20. CaptainStoner

    CaptainStoner Knuckle-dragging TNZ Denizen Admiral

    Sep 11, 2007
    Hill dweller
    Joby - perhaps the grass is always greener. Maybe Paul is a narcissist or something. Let him have his popularity contest and remember your own strengths. Start focusing not on the attention he gets, but in remembering the qualities you want to find in a woman. Judging by your post, I imagine one of them is a woman who can easily see through and isn't all that interested in a Don Juan. Contemplate these qualities regularly, know that she exists, and be willing to take the adventure when it comes your way. Step bravely Sir Knight -