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Happeningtome posted 7/31/2013 08:24 AM

I find myself in a tricky situation and would like your thoughts please.

My BH and I just bought a small business. After the deal was signed, we got a list of current employees and realized FAP's teenager is an employee

Said teenager was informed I was FAP's OW shortly after DDay. My BH and I are NC with FAP's entire family, with one exception - FAP followed me one day a few months ago and I confronted him.

In preparation for taking over the business, we asked all employees who wanted to stay to complete some paperwork. We just received paperwork from FAP's teenager, which resulted in a discussion about having this individual work for/with both of us.

My BH feels trapped at this point. Even though my A was made über-public after DDay, he believes there are some people who don't know about it, and he doesn't want any more embarrassment/exposure, so he is willing to have this person stay on as an employee vs try to explain their absence.

My feeling is that FAP's family has very skewed boundaries - FAP has had numerous affairs (exposed), and he and his BW allow regular interaction between his FOW and their children (carpooling, sleepovers, etc.). My BH and I do not understand this AT ALL, but now it looks like I am somehow going to be a part of this seriously (in my opinion) f'd up dynamic.

I understand these are consequences for me, but even though my BH and I totally agree that our child would NEVER be allowed within 100 yards of FAP, somehow the other family sees nothing wrong with having their teenager hang out with their Dad's FOW (me). I'm sorry, but WTF? Why would they want to do that? Said teenager routinely gives both me and my BH the stink eye whenever we see them around town, so why would they want to work with us on a regular basis?

Very puzzling to me. Thoughts? I do feel badly that the teenager is stuck in the middle of this, but i also feel they are getting a lot of direction on this from FAP and his BW, and it has now become a game of "who is going to be the bad guy". I just don't want my BH to suffer any more as a result of my actions, and I feel FAP is trying to make my BH out as a bad guy if he doesn't hire the teenager, when in fact, if he had been a good Dad, this situation would not be a problem for his child. Clearly their family deals with infidelity/NC in a totally different manner than ours, but does that mean it is necessary that we change our boundaries around NC?

Thanks for listening/advice/thoughts.

Blobette posted 7/31/2013 08:39 AM

I guess I would approach this from a practical angle -- what are your options? It sounds like you could simply not re-hire this kid. What's the fall-out there? The biggest issue is that it's unfair to the individual. Presumably s/he did a perfectly OK job. So the only reason you're not re-hiring is because s/he's related to someone you don't want in your life. How likely is it that the FAP will use this as an excuse to come round?

I suppose I would lean toward re-hiring, just because I feel sorry for the kid. I'm not sure if the nature of the business means that you will have a lot of direct interaction or not. I assume you're not best buddies with your employees anyway, and that you maintain boundaries with ALL employees -- so being professional with this person wouldn't be any different. It sounds like this kid needs folks to model appropriate behavior, anyway.

It may be that this is just a way to wind you up, and the kid won't take the job, anyway.

But your BH should really be the one making the decision.

Dont' know how helpful that is...

struggling3 posted 7/31/2013 08:41 AM

Do what is best for your family...and your reconciliation. If that means letting the kid go then so be it. He will find another are resilient.

ninebark posted 7/31/2013 09:00 AM

In preparation for taking over the business, we asked all employees who wanted to stay to complete some paperwork.

As an employee he has done as you asked, if you plan to let him go you need to have a reason.

I personally don't think it is right to fire a person based on the actions of other people. I say let him continue to work and base whether or not you let him go on his actual performance. If he can't be professional and do his work then fine, but if he continues to be a good employee then there is no reason to let him go. The minute there is drama from his family, well then you can reassess his employement.

I realize you are trying to protect your BH and maybe my perspective won't be a popular one. But I think as the employer you to approach this as an employer. Your actions do have consquences as you have stated, but these consquences should not be payed for by an innocent party.

LifeisCrazy posted 7/31/2013 10:37 AM

I'm sorry but I don't get this at all...

YOU own the company. You do not OWE the employee anything.

If the employee makes you even 1% uncomfortable (you had an affair with his father, for goodness sake. His father wasn't just some business deal gone astray) then you have EVERY right to end that employer-employee relationship. And you should.

I know it sucks for the kid. But you know what? Since he knows about what happened he'll learn that his father's actions have consequences for people other than his father. He's seeing those consequences first hand - it's going to cost him his job. Maybe that will be a good life lesson - don't screw your kid's boss.

Why in the world would you allow yourself to continue this sub plot in your life? Cut yourself free from ALL OF IT and move forward with your husband and your business.

sisoon posted 7/31/2013 10:49 AM

I'm with ninebark. The kid is not at fault or even involved (at least that's how it sounds). How is it right to make him suffer for your transgressions and his father's?

If other employment is available to this kid, with similar pay and opportunities, you might suggest he seek other employment and give him a nice severance package after he gets a new job, but especially since your BH is comfortable with his continued employment, I think you need to figure out how to deal with it.

Alternatively, if his performance in inadequate, you can let him go.

Happeningtome posted 7/31/2013 13:49 PM

Hi All - thanks for the feedback. It is good to read all the perspectives.

I definitely feel like Lifeiscrazy - our business, our decision who works for us, and this employee is part of a crazy train I want no part of. Just wish my BH agreed. He fears any negative publicity and/or further exposure/rehashing of what was arguably the worst time in his life. He doesn't want the start of something that should be joyful and exciting marred by more gossip. He's had all he can take of his personal life being tabloid fodder in this town.

I get my BH's perspective, and I can be professional and treat this person exactly the same as any other employee. Still boggling my mind, however, that this arrangement is acceptable to FAP and his BW, but clearly they don't share our belief of total NC forever.

I guess I see this as a breach of NC on FAP's side and I am a little angry and frustrated.

sisoon posted 7/31/2013 14:30 PM

I don't get your response. What am I missing?

This is not the FAP; it's FAP's son. They're separate individuals.

Also, do you think you can or have a right to control FAP, much less his family? You control only you - you maintain NC with FAP. FAP leads his own life.

If FAP tries to reestablish contact, you can take him to court - but, again, the only adult you actually control is you.

I mean the following pretty gently. It sounds almost as if you think if FAP and his brood are out of sight, they're out of mind, but no matter where he or anyone else is, you have to and can heal from and make amends for your own behavior. Don't let this kid make you lose focus on the work you need to do.

[This message edited by sisoon at 2:38 PM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

libertyrocks posted 7/31/2013 14:56 PM

So, if I understand this correctly. You're BH will be working with the son of OM?? Sorry, if I were BH, eff that! No WAY, would I even remotely be okay with running into AP. That is not okay for HIS healing. So, I beg to differ. YOUR BH's security should not be compromised. This "kid" may need a ride from his father, or worse, YOU may need to call his father in case of an emergencey. I don't think that's fair to your BH. That's my pretty penny.

libertyrocks posted 7/31/2013 15:10 PM

Just re-read and re-thought. Hell no.

Happeningtome posted 7/31/2013 15:25 PM

Hi Sisoon - sorry this is so convoluted. In a nutshell, after Dday, FAP's BW became very heavily invested in my BH's "healing" while she simultaneously defended and supported her WH. She suggested everything from the two of them having an RA to him using her IC. After a couple of weeks had passed and we decided to try to R, my BH and I decided that any contact with FAP, his BW or anyone associated with them was not helpful to our marriage, so we cut all ties to a lot of people. My BH politely informed FAP's BW that her WH was a serial cheater and although he was concerned for her well being, he did not intend to stay in contact with her going forward. For months, fishing attempts were made from 2 of FAP's best friends (also WS's) to "check in" with me to see if I was OK. FAP's BW also emailed periodically, none of which I responded to.

About 6 months after my Dday, FAP had another Dday, and 4-5 OW were uncovered and he and his BW separated for a few months but are now back together. As I mentioned above, they allow their children to hang out with FAP's OWomen and their families.

Anyhow, the continued attempts to stay in contact by FAP's BW and their friends has not been welcome. We have made it very clear that we do not want any interaction with anyone who is associated with FAP or his BW, because we do not agree with their boundaries or their lifestyle.

This is why I take such issue with having one of the family members working with my BH and I. The teenager does not drive, so the parents will be basically at our front door on a regular basis. NOT something we are comfortable with at all. FAP is a stalker-type, NPD. No way should we be inviting that anywhere near us - not healthy for my BH, not healthy for me. Ugh.

Happeningtome posted 7/31/2013 15:27 PM

Thanks LibertyRocks. How do I convince my BH that this is one thing he can let go, in the midst of all the craziness of starting a business?

notquiteoverit posted 7/31/2013 15:37 PM

The teenager needs to go. I'm with Libertyrocks on the reasons why. Also, it is YOUR business and you have a right to be comfortable with your employees. If it were me, I would wonder why the kid even wanted to stay, and whether his future intentions were on the level. He is a teenager, and losing the job will not make or break him. One caveat - do your homework and make sure that letting him go is not going to get you into hot water with labor laws, or accused of discrimination, unlawful termination or any of those things.

Tearsoflove posted 7/31/2013 16:19 PM

He is a teenager, and losing the job will not make or break him.

Actually, you don't know that. Maybe he's using the money he makes from his job to pay for college classes or saving to buy a car so he'll have some independence to move out when he graduates. Maybe he looked for other jobs and had a hard time finding one (like all of my teenagers). He may want to stay because he likes the job and wants to stay.

I agree with those who say that he had nothing to do with this. If all the other employees got an offer to submit paperwork to keep their jobs and everyone else is keeping theirs, he should also get to keep his. He had nothing to do with the affair. So what if his parents' behavior doesn't make sense to you. I imagine if you take a poll of the behaviors of most of your employees, you'll find quite a lot of them who don't live like you do. This isn't an extra-curricular activity that he can just quit and go get into another club. This is his job and unless you have some indication that he doesn't perform it well, I don't think you should fire him. If it becomes a problem in the future, you could address it then.

doesitgetbetter posted 7/31/2013 16:52 PM

If you wouldn't let your children within 100 yards of AP, then why would you let AP's children within 100 yards of you?

JustWow posted 7/31/2013 20:13 PM

Maybe before you hire or fire him, it would be smart to do a quick consult with an employment attorney in your state. Laws do vary a lot from state to state, and it could be once you hire him, it could become very difficult to fire him (if he continues to fire snarky looks at the bosses).

Might be worth getting the full picture to protect yourself up-front.

[This message edited by JustWow at 9:28 PM, July 31st (Wednesday)]

Skan posted 7/31/2013 20:38 PM

Said teenager routinely gives both me and my BH the stink eye whenever we see them around town

And if you think that for one moment, that he's going to be any better working for you, then I suggest that you think again. NC NC and that means with the family as well. Given the above, I think that this teen is going to cause trouble no matter what, probably egged on by his family. Either the trouble can be a running of the mouth outside of your business or it can be a running of the mouth inside of your business. Run it by a labor lawyer if you want, but I would simply decline to re-hire him.

Happeningtome posted 7/31/2013 22:57 PM

Just wanted to say Thanks to everyone who took the time to respond. I really value all of the different viewpoints and comments whenever I consult SI.


ninebark posted 8/1/2013 05:55 AM

I say this with respect, because it isn't meant to be a shot at you at all. But it just seems unfair to me that you want to punish a teenager for a mistake that you made.

If he had that job before you had the A or during the A then it is not like he is activly seeking you out to cause trouble, he is just doing his job. At this point if you are planning to let him go (and I am not sure of the labour laws in the US), you need to make sure it isn't falling under wrongful dismissal.

If you decide to keep him on, does he know of the A? Perhaps you need to speak to him upon rehiring and let him know what sort of behaviors will not be tollerated. He could be just giving you stink eye because he is a teenager, or he could know. Either way set the boundaries.

I know some people said that as an employer you don't owe the employee anything, I thought that was a little harsh. I think a good employer does take the well being of their employees into consideration, employees do have rights as well.

Anyway, good luck with a potentially tense situation. I know that you are just trying to do what is best for your family and your reconcillation and I am not judging you in anyway, I am just trying to give you all sides of the argument.

sisoon posted 8/1/2013 07:31 AM

Thanks for the explanation. I continue to think it's not good ethics or good business to fire the kid because of your transgression, especially since your H is OK with his continued employment.

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