I need advice: I have to see my ex every day at work; it is miserable

·3-min read
Girl looking at her colleague with love in her eyes while he is talking
I have to see my ex every day at work; it is miserable. (Picture for representational purposes only)

In our new series called, ‘I need advice’, we bring you questions that real-life people have asked in publications around the world. These are hard-hitting issues faced by men and women today. The questions could range from family, relationships and work, to abuse and sex.


I am a 35-year-old woman, who fell in love with the wrong guy, in the wrong place, at the wrong time. Pretty much everything is wrong in my life right now (apart from the global pandemic), and I am hoping that the forum will give me some good advice on how to move forward from where I am currently.

5 years ago, I fell in love with a dashing man who joined our organisation in a role junior to mine. We both are in the R&D sector, so we had to spend quite some time together because of the nature of our work. I kept my feelings to myself because I know that office romances are easier said than done - and fail most of the time.

However, it turns out, he was in love with me too. He expressed his love during an office party and I was elated, thinking — if we both are in agreement, then what is the problem. We will work something out. So we kept our romance a secret from our colleagues. It was an intense yet enormously enjoyable 4 years.

However a year ago, things began to get sour between us. I guess work got in the way, he got double promotions, tempers flared, priorities were changed — in short, the relationship was not working anymore.

So I called it quits.

It was complicated, and both of us ended up bitter, unhappy and angry.

The problem is now I have to see his face everyday at work. It is awkward and painful. Sometimes I wish I could just speak to him, tell him how I feel, but the anger sets in. Since the pandemic and subsequent lockdown struck, we have been working from home — its long hours, and numerous conference calls on zoom. I have to see his face the whole time, discuss work matters as if nothing happened.

It is so difficult.

I have been in my current organisation for more than 10 years now, and I certainly don’t want to quit at this stage. Since my Ex joined only 5 years ago, I wish he would quit.

I know I should not have got myself into this mess. But now I don't know how to get out.

Please help me.

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