Dear Abby: Pushy handyman makes my job scary

SHARE Dear Abby: Pushy handyman makes my job scary

DEAR ABBY: About six months ago, I started a new job I really enjoy. A handyman who does odd jobs around the building was working on the floor in my area. He was chatty and I made polite conversation, but now things have escalated.

He has started contacting me on social media to the point where I had to block him. He tries to talk to me daily and I am feeling very uncomfortable. He’s twice my age and I have no interest in him, romantically or otherwise.

It has reached the point where I have a great deal of anxiety about going to work. I feel uncomfortable and intimidated. It’s especially difficult because I work alone most of the day, so I am nervous he might try to harm me.

How should I approach this without it turning into a huge deal at work? I want to let my manager know, but I’m afraid it’ll only cause more issues and make things worse. I’m afraid to make him mad, and afraid about what he might do. Any advice would be great. — AFRAID HE’LL HARM ME

DEAR AFRAID: Talk to your manager about this immediately. This man should not be attempting to have a personal relationship with you in or out of work.

He needs to be told to stop bothering you during work hours or attempting to contact you afterward, because if he doesn’t, he could be cited for harassment or lose his job.

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DEAR ABBY: I am 23 and a dog sitter. I work through a company that sets up the visits and stay overnight with different families’ dogs.

There’s one family I sit for regularly. I absolutely love their two dogs and the family themselves. I stay anywhere from two nights to seven nights and work a second job on the weekdays. After walking, feeding, etc. is done, I have a ton of free time.

My dilemma: I’d like my long-term boyfriend to stay with me for a night or two on the weekends. I’m having trouble figuring out how — or if — I should ask them. They have never met my boyfriend, but I have proven my own trustworthiness because they keep asking me to come back.

I will go through my boss first, but I’m worried that the family may be offended if I even ask. Should I ask, or should I just let it be since it’s part of my job? Help! — THE DOG SITTER

DEAR DOG SITTER: You are in the dog-sitting BUSINESS, and if you want to be successful, you need to view it as such.

Definitely discuss this question with your employer. Because you are working through a company, that company could be liable for any property loss or damage that might occur while your boyfriend was staying in a client’s home with you.

But if there’s any question in your mind about how asking your clients to have your boyfriend stay with you in their house will be received, don’t do it. Some families have moral values that would preclude unmarried couples sleeping together under their roof.

For the sake of your own credibility, please consider what I’m trying to convey to you.

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

Abby shares more than 100 of her favorite recipes in two booklets: “Abby’s Favorite Recipes” and “More Favorite Recipes by Dear Abby.” Send your name and mailing address, plus check or money order for $14 (U.S. funds), to: Dear Abby, Cookbooklet Set, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Shipping and handling are included in the price.)

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