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A business associate keeps asking personal questions . This is making me so angry and embarrassed. Please help.
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Mar 14, 2021
Hi there, it is frustrating and also painful, if someone pokes into your private life, especially if it carries so much sadness and loss. I can only guess, but maybe answering 'No.' was seen as an invitation to keep asking. My wife and me have an agreement never to share any information about each other to third parties, especially in our online times, this has proven to be a very helpful shield against the curiousity of others, even if it is well meant. Jumping from 'no kids' to 'not married' is a very inappropriate conclusion to be drawn, imho. And probably I would have snapped at such a reaction in a 'that is none of your f*** business' way. Maybe you can take the professional frame as a shield for yourself: Tell him, that you appreciate his socializing skills, even if you do not (it makes him more open to actually listen to you) but that you are not into that. You are fine with giving professional advice, maybe even mentorship, but your personal life and relationship is off-limit territory, since you are colleagues, not friends. You can literally tell him 'Dude, I feel offended, if someone I know for barely 48 hours starts digging into my private life or even making assumptions about it!' If he is the kind of babbling socializer I imagine, he will probably start a waterfall of apologizes etc. that can cause even more of an awkward situation, if not dealt with immediately: if that happens, just cut him short: 'I know you did not mean to be inappropriate, and that is cool. Apology accepted, and now we grab a coffee, and I will show you how our CRM/Order Platform/whatever you wanna tell him works.' The goal is, to keep the initiative and not to end up in a defensive situation where you have to fend off painful questions. Also if he offers to bring you a coffee in that situation, make sure you do not fall for this, but you go there together. Otherwise you will be opening the door again for an other apologetic waterfall. I do not claim to have the perfect solution for your situation, but hopefully I could provide some tactics/strategies to deal with it and find a way out. Love and Peace Shen
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