WWYD – Inappropriate Boss

I have been following a conversation on Twitter, and we had a discussion on FB and I bring the issue to you here.

A twitter friend is having an issue with her male boss calling her “sweetie” and “cutie”. She says that she knows he means nothing by using those terms, no nefarious or ulterior motives, that’s just him.

But it bothers her. She doesn’t want to make a big deal out of this, but she does want him to stop.

What do you think she should do? What would you do?

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  1. batya from NJ says:

    Some people call EVERYONE sweetie & cutie. If it’s how the boss addresses EVERYONE then it’s probably harmless but if ONLY she is addressed that way, I guess it might be problematic…

    • Ariela says:

      does EVERYONE mean both men and women or just women? I agree if he is calling men and women by those names. However, if it is just women, then I disagree

  2. I agree with Batya, but I also think it’s best to be honest – ESPECIALLY if you believe it’s innocent, but still makes you uncomfortable. I’ve had to tell friends to not touch me so freely, not call me “Dear,” and basically respect my personal space and idiosyncracies. If you do it privately, kindly, and make it clear that you’re not OFFENDED, just – uncomfortable – and that you’re saying it because you know they don’t mean to upset you, but the behavior DOES, it can improve the relationship.

    • tesyaa says:

      Great answer! If the boss is not a jerk but just has this bad habit, saying something should not be a problem. In fact, she might be doing him a favor if he stops using this language around females.

  3. Mark says:

    It would be wise to note that this person is in Israel where these things are, let’s say, a little looser than in the USA. I wonder what he calls the guys in the office?

    • batya from NJ says:

      Oh..it’s in Israel where everyone is called Motek, Metukah, Chabibi, etc, then I doubt the boss will even get why there is any issue & he’ll likely answer her, “b’seder motek”-LOL :)!!!.

  4. Is he Jewish? Might make a difference. In some places (the south) this is a very typical thing to say.

  5. Dr. Peter Geidel says:

    I also agree with Batya. I know someone who grew up in a Jewish neighborhood in Newark, NJ, and at first I was taken aback when she called me “sweetie” and either “honey” or “hon.” Only after I noticed that she said this to everyone did I realize that she had grown up with others who used these words freely. The key is whether your friend is the only person being called by these terms.

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