DEAR HARRIETTE: There’s a woman at my job who has decided that she wants me to be her best friend. Whenever she has a free moment, she hovers by my desk. She tries to go to lunch with me when I go out. She’s the first to sign up if co-workers want to go out for drinks -- if she hears that I am going. This woman is cramping my style. I like her fine, but she is acting like a stalker. How can I get her to give me some space? -- Stalker Co-worker, Philadelphia
DEAR STALKER CO-WORKER: Start by making yourself scarce right before you plan to head out with other co-workers. Be discreet so that this woman does not know your whereabouts. If she doesn’t think you are going to attend particular events, perhaps she will stop going.
You can tell her that on a particular afternoon or evening, you have planned to spend one-on-one with another co-worker. Perhaps she can join you at another time. If the subtle hints don’t work, you may have to be direct. Tell her that you like hanging out with her sometimes, but you need her to back off a little bit. You want the freedom to do whatever you want by yourself.