Dear Miriam,

I am working with a man that I am attracted to. Previously, we would enjoy chats together. I really like him and we have so much in common.

However, we became a focal talking point in work. We were both embarrassed by the slagging, it gradually got worse and I felt it created a divide between myself and this guy.

The slagging got so bad it upset both of us. I find now that he is uncomfortable with me in work and he won’t talk to me, which really hurts.

It is so hard having to see him in work and not being able to communicate properly with him. I feel hurt and go home crying.

I can’t go on like this forever. Can you please advise me on what to do. I have tried to move on and meet other people and it hasn’t worked out and I end up back at square one. What do I do about the hurtful comments?

Heartbroken Lady

Miriam responds

Dear Heartbroken Lady,

Thank you for getting in touch. As you know, you did send me a more detailed letter, but I am just able to use an extract here due to space constraints.

This situation has obviously taken its toll on you. Nobody should ever be leaving work in tears. You ask at the end of your letter about what to do regarding the “hurtful comments”. Would you consider talking to the HR department where you work about what has been going on?

If not, some employers provide an Employee Assistance Programme, which is a confidential and independent service to support people with whatever issues they may be facing, be they work-related or personal. I think it would be very helpful to talk to somebody and to work out some self-care strategies. If such a service is not available through work, you could find an accredited therapist in your area at or

It seems that you have invested a lot of time and energy in this man, and I know again from your longer letter that you feel that your hopes were raised on previous occasions. I understand why you suspect the “slagging” perhaps drove a wedge between you both and made things awkward. But I suppose ultimately, if things were meant to be, that would not have been such a big barrier at the end of the day. Some things are just not meant to be, and that is no reflection on either you or this man. That might be hard to accept, especially after all of this time. But acceptance allows us to move forward; usually to much better things.

It appears that you have a lot of love to give to the right person, but you must start with investing time and care and love in yourself. What is it that you enjoy doing, away from work? Think about your interests; is it hill-walking, dancing, music, volunteering etc? Is there a group you could join where you could meet other like-minded people? By widening your social circle, you will meet new friends, and hopefully, in time, one of those friendships might evolve into a relationship. But you have to take care of yourself, first and foremost. Be your own hero.

I wish you the best of luck and every happiness.

Reader writes

Hi Miriam,

In relation to the recent letter (“I’m struggling to support my wife” 4 March edition) I married a wonderful man who farmed and I also had post-natal depression (PND) following the birth of our beautiful daughter. It took a lot of care and meds for a while for me to move on. Mothers need a lot of support at this time and I’d suggest this lady’s husband and his parents treat her gently and with kindness, which is exactly what she deserves and needs and offer to take the children to give her an opportunity to meet her pals or to simply get away for a few hours.

PND is not like cutting her hand or breaking a bone- from experience I feel she won’t get better unless she gets the care and kindness she needs. I wish her the very best with her whole family- everything will work out if this is handled properly.

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