Successful relationships with men whose profession includes being charming and flirtatious

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-09-2009
Successful relationships with men whose profession includes being charming and flirtatious
Wed, 10-24-2012 - 6:58pm

Hello to all on Happily Married -

Please read the full post before responding -

I'm involved with a man who is a personal trainer.  He has been earning a living this way for about eight years and is good looking, in his forties, age appropriate for me. He and I have only been exclusive for two months, but we have discussed long term posibilities for this relationship. Given that we are still in a getting to know each other phase of the relationship, I am remaining objective about where this could go.  We do have strong feelings for each other, and he has demonstrated devotion to me.

Me question is, how does the partner of a man whose profession involves being flirtatious with other women deal with that?  At this point it has not been an issue for me, since I understand that people need to project certain personas for their jobs. 

He invited me to a dinner that includes clients and their significant others, and a woman who is a prospective client. He is looking to close a deal with her, so I understand there may be some flirtatious behavior. I have yet to see exactly what that looks like with him, and only have perspective from how men have tried to use charm to win me over in a business deal as a point of reference.

My concern, and this is based on past experience, is how the women there, including this prospective client, will treat me.  I have already been in situations with other partners in the past in which women either misread attention or  charm as more than what it was and were hostile to me in a catty (covert) manner or were overtly trying to take the flirtatiousness  to a more serious level, and were blatantly disrespectful to me. They have tried to block me out of conversations by cutting me off, talking over me, or dismissing  my contributions to the conversation, or going so far as to try to  (again, read in a catty manner)  squeeze me out of my space when sitting next to my date so they could get closer.  I am not looking to project negativity, however; I want to mentally and emotionally be prepared and composed, since this unfortunately has proven to be the way some women inevitably behave. 

I know that by inviting me this man is making the effort to show me he has noting to hide, and also to make it known to others that he is not single. I want to know how couples in similar situations deal with this, when the nature of their husbands' work involves some kind of turning on charm and selling their appeal to get a client or deal. I believe that it is my partner's job to make sure the boundaries are understood and that I am not put in the position of having to fend off women from my significiant other. Is that  unreasonable?

I want to make this relationship work and be realistic, mature and supportive, but I can't tolerate being disrespected for the sake of someone else's success. This is also an opportunity for me to see how he will field that kind of behavior towards me if it occurs, and if he even picks up on it. The nature of cattiness is to go undetected except by the person who is being disrespected.

Thanks in advance for the feedback.

Avatar for mrosie
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-23-2000

Grr...I've been trying to respond to this post all day! Sorry if you've checked back and seen no responses...I blame the glitches of the new board system. LOL

While I haven't ever been in the position that you describe, I think I understand your concerns.

I would talk to your boyfriend about this and ask for his take on how you might both handle possible situations that might arise at this gathering.

A word of warning: you might want to be careful about projecting issues you've had from the past onto this relationship. It sounds like you are bracing yourself for something that may never happen. While it's not completely unwise to talk this through with your partner, you also don't want to create a self-fulfilling propecy.

I hope that you'll post back here and let us know how it went!


Avatar for hugss
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-25-2010

Welcome to the board,
Which has been down most of the day today ..
Anyways I do agree with RoseAnn that you need to talk to him about this.
As well as not projecting anything from your past into this relationship.
Am sure we;ll here from others soon so do hope you check back :)

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-22-2007

This is NOT about how some women behave.   Your guy is leading them on and giving all the right signals.  Of course they are going to try and take it further!    Your guy sounds extremely unprofessional.    And I'd lay money that flirting with clients is a violation of the Code of Conduct.  Just as it would be with a sports masseur.

You say that you've been flirted with and charmed to close deals in the past.  But doesn't this sit badly with you?   Surely you'd make a deal because a man was professional at his job - not because he's charming.    Likewise, if your guy was a good personal trainer, he wouldn't need to flirt to get clients.  His professionalism, outcomes and resulting referrals would be sufficient. 

However, if he insists that flirting is required, you can only assume that he'll have women chasing him. He's giving off all the welcoming signals, so of course they will chase him.   And if he's continuing to flirt, you'll also have women who project onto him and fall in love with him and so on.      And he'll let it keep happening because it gives him matter how badly it makes the women feel.

I'd avoid this guy like the plague.