I’m so mortified and am pretty sure the co-workers I was drinking with have told him everything I said because they have a friendship with him outside of work. I’m so ashamed and embarrassed that I’ve been losing sleep over it, thinking about my behavior all day every day, and I am terrified of going back to work and having to face everyone. I know that there’s no way the co-worker I have a crush on will be able to view me in a positive light after learning the things I said about him. I don’t know if I should speak to him privately or speak to the two guys I went out with and try to clear up the situation. I know that even though I was drunk, I’m to blame for my actions. I acted like a complete idiot and crossed a line that I should not have, I’m beating myself up about this so much, and I’m so embarrassed and scared of what it’s going to be like when I go back to work. FYI, I’m a full-time student who works at a bar, so I only have to be there three nights a week, but I’ve worked there for a while and have good relationships with my co-workers. I’m afraid now everyone will see me as a vulgar sloppy drunk and a home-wrecker! — Not Always a Vulgar Sloppy Drunk
Relax! It’s going to be ok! You said some inappropriate things, and that’s unfortunate, but this is not the end of the world! And because you work in a bar part-time, it’s different than if you worked in a more business-like, professional atmosphere. People who work in bars are sort of used to sloppy drunks saying inappropriate things. I wouldn’t lose sleep about this. I also wouldn’t speak privately to the subject of your remarks. You don’t know what, if anything, was shared with him, and you risk not only outing yourself if he hasn’t heard anything, but making him uncomfortable to boot.
What you could do instead is pull aside the two co-workers you went out with the other night, either together or individually, and say something like, “Hey, I’m really regretting my behavior the other night. I drank too much and said a lot of things I didn’t mean and wouldn’t normally say, and I feel embarrassed and ashamed. I apologize if I said or did anything to make you feel uncomfortable – it won’t ever happen again — and I hope you won’t hold it against me.” I wouldn’t be surprised if they shrug and say, “Yeah – you were really trashed!” Just shrug back and say, “I know. Like I said, I’m pretty embarrassed about it and hope we can all forget it happened!” I promise, it’s probably not as big a deal as you think it is, but do take this as an important lesson to NOT to talk the way you did ever again, most especially with co-workers. It’s really important as we fight against sexually inappropriate behavior in the workplace that we women not actively perpetuate it!
My boyfriend has been very supportive of my daughter and me, he treats her like absolute gold, and he backs up my parenting choices, as I do his. He wants to know how to be her “daddy” as he says it, lol, which is awesome because her bio-dad didn’t really do much in the way of fathering her in any way, shape, or form. She has seen her bio-dad only four times since we separated, so he’s not really in the picture much. (I left him in part because I realized that my daughter and I deserved better and I didn’t want her to grow up thinking that the way her dad treated me was what love was.)
My question is: My boyfriend is saying he doesn’t want to change her diaper because she is not his daughter, and if I were to ask him to help out with babysitting (I work nights so I pay someone to sleep over just in case she wakes up), he would want half of what I pay the regular babysitter. I don’t know why but that kind of put me off a bit. I don’t know if he is setting respectful boundaries and I am the one not used to it, or if it’s something I need to discuss with him and, if I do, how to I approach it. — New to this Mom!
Woah, you’ve only been separated from your kid’s father six months and you already have a new boyfriend who’s asking how to be your kid’s daddy, who’s sleeping over at night while you’re at work, and who’s someone with whom you’re having parenting conflicts? This is totally inappropriate. If this is what it looks like when you’re trying not to move too fast, what does it look like when you aren’t trying? I mean… wow. You need to slow way the fuck down.
At this point, six months after separating from your daughter’s dad, there should not even be a new father figure in her life yet. Honestly, if you’re dating at all at this point, it should be dipping a toe in the dating pool, not asking a new boyfriend to sleep over at night alone with your daughter while you’re at work!! Your boyfriend may be asking for payment for babysitting as a way of establishing SOME kind of boundary here since you have established none. Conversely, he may just be trying to make some cash. Either way, it’s clear he doesn’t actually WANT to be a “daddy” figure to your daughter right now and that’s a good thing because he shouldn’t be!! It’s been a handful of months.
You should apologize to him — tell him you realize now that you’ve been moving things too quickly with him and you hope it hasn’t made him uncomfortable. Tell him you really like him and are enjoying your relationship and you don’t want to jeopardize it by moving too fast. Tell him that going forward, and until you’ve had a lot more time together, you’ll only have babysitters stay the night with your daughter.
I wouldn’t even mention the diaper issue, but, obviously, stop asking him to change your daughter’s diapers and be grateful he’s a conscientious enough man to give you a head’s up that that’s not cool. You know that, right? That asking a guy you’ve just started dating to help your young daughter with diaper and bathroom needs is totally inappropriate and dangerous? Well, now you do, so don’t do it again. Just like you say your daughter deserved better than the bio-dad who wasn’t interested in her and didn’t treat you well, she also deserves better than being put in vulnerable positions with men her mother has just started dating.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy(AT)dearwendy.com.