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'I got wasted at my company's holiday party and embarrassed myself with my engaged coworker.' UPDATED 2X

'I got wasted at my company's holiday party and embarrassed myself with my engaged coworker.' UPDATED 2X


There's nothing quite like the mess of a holiday party.

"Me [24F] at my company's holiday party - got dr*nk and embarrassed myself with my engaged coworker [27M]."

I've been at this company since March and before that, I worked a retail job, so this was the first company holiday party I've been to. In retrospect, I did a lot wrong and I embarrassed myself.

I have a male coworker that I have a crush on. I have not told him as he's engaged. We hang out with other coworkers outside of work and he has slept over my place once with other coworkers since we were all dr*nk and it was late. I try to be respectful of his relationship. I thought at one point he may return the feelings towards me, but he has not said anything and is still with his fiancee.

We are close friends in the office and I would hate to ruin things for everyone. It was my company's holiday party last night. It was at a nice hotel, cocktail attire. I got together with some of the women from my office to get ready before. We pre-gamed before. I wound up having way too much to drink.

I do not remember a lot of the night. I remember talking to my male coworker a lot, drinking some, a speech here and there, the food from my throw up, but that's it. I know this will be the last time I drink so heavily at these events. I woke up at my coworker's house this morning. My two female coworkers told me they had to drag me away from the party since I was so dr-nk and making a scene.

They told me that I spent the night flirting with my male coworker, who's fiancee came with him. As they tell says, he introduced me to his fiancee and then I sort of went off the rails? I apparently flirted with him in front of her before someone led me away. When he went to the bar alone, I tried to share a drink with him.

When he was alone again, I asked him to dance and when he said no, I tried. When he refused, I got upset and asked why he didn't like me. Apparently this was overheard by a lot of my coworkers. At the end of the night, I was making a scene and going on about things and they finally brought me home (since they tried before and I wouldn't go).

I am embarrassed. I am never drinking again at a company event. I ruined my friendship with him, most likely. I was invited to his wedding, I doubt that they'd want me there now. I did this in front of my boss and all my coworkers.

I wish I could say that people were too busy to notice, but I was making such a scene that one of my coworkers took a video of my going off at one point. I know I can be a jealous person, but this is an ugly side of me that I have never seen and never want to see again. I realize that I may have deeper feelings for my coworker than I believed, but that isn't an excuse to act like that.

My main things are - how should I act at work now? Should I apologize to him, to my coworkers? Should I act like it never happened? Can I smooth things over with him? We have a solid friend group from work and I don't want to ruin that? How can I get over the shame here?

TL;DR: I got really dr*nk at my company's holiday party and was all over my engaged coworker. What to do now?

Commenters had a lot to say in response.

perljen wrote:

Listen I read through about the first half of your comments. I did the same thing at a corporate national sales meeting. I'm just telling you: this too shall pass. Whatever you do, do not go to HR.

They are not problem solver's, they are protectors of the company line. Apologize to the people involved that you feel you need to. Period. Keep your nose clean, don't enter into any jokes at your own expense about it or try to be a good sport about it.

Just don't address it at all. Best of luck. You are showing adequate self-awareness and you are very articulate and sincere sounding. You will make it. I went on to have 20 more good years at my company. It helped that I was the best at what I do… Maybe you can factor that into your own behavior.

OP responded:

The problem is that I can't ignore it. One of my bosses was there (well, multiple, but he's the one I'd be worried about). He's upper management. He's also the godfather to my coworker's fiancee. His wife is her godmother. His fiancee got my coworker his job. I do not think I will last 20 years now. I do not know how this will not impact my future, as much as I hope it doesn't.

[deleted] wrote:

"I thought at one point he may return the feelings towards me, but he has not said anything and is still with his fiancee."

I find this line really strange. He has a fiancee and you thought or hoped he would leave her for you? A crush is one thing, but reading this sounds more like an obsession.

Alsacia wrote:

I'm sorry, but you ruined your friendship dynamic at work. He is not going to be around you after you disrespected his fiancée and relationship, caused a scene, and turned him into a source of gossip. He is not going to want to spend time with you after work.

The group will take his side and you will be disinvited from happy hours. You will not be welcomed at the wedding-don't make them have to tell you that.

RSVP "no" and add a note of apology to the couple: "I'm mortified by my behavior and sincerely apologize. While I can't make it right, of course I will respect your union by not attending. I wish you a lifetime of happiness together..." then all you can do is give it time to blow over at work.

A week later, OP shared an update.

The tl;dr version of this is that I heavily came onto an engaged coworker at my company's holiday party and made a fool of myself.

Since people were asking or an update, I thought I'd give one!

A lot has happened in the past week plus that I posted that. I went in that Monday, actually ran into my coworker in the elevator, tried to speak to him (clearly a mistake). I apologized to him and he told me that he never had any feelings for me, always viewed me as a friend and coworker, and not to speak to him.

He actually got off earlier than he was going to.

I wound up being called to HR. They were investigating the events of the party (apparently more than one, but that's no excuse). They had some videos of me which were humiliating and worse than what was described to me.

They were getting the rest of the people there to give them a written account if they saw anything. Long story short, they gave me a choice of quitting or getting fired after the investigation was done (again, so what they had, I would've been fired). I chose to quit. I was friendly with the HR person and I think she was trying to help me by offering me a chance to quit before they could fire me.

My male coworker did complain to them about what happened at the party. He actually went to HR right after I tried to talk to him in the elevator. I know I should've listened to people here more. I have been talking to my alma mater about getting a job there, starting the application process, and going to be moving closer to home. Nothing is happening much right now because of the holidays.

I realize that my actions were harassment that night. I realize that I was "in love" with him, or at least I thought I was. I will be booking an appointment with a therapist next year once I figure out my job situation, since I want to find one where I will be living and figure out insurance.

I did talk to one of my female coworkers who I would consider a friend. She was very apologetic that she did not get me out of there earlier and admitted she thinks she egged me on with him.

Alas, this is not her fault and I told her so. My advice to people is to not drink too much at a work event and to be professional there. Other people did stuff at the party, too, and I heard about that all before I left. "Everyone does stupid things at the Christmas party" is something I told myself after this. I wish I realized this before.

I tried to tell my roommate this before her holiday party (which she also pregamed!) and she was a drunk mess there. My last question for everyone here would be: I was told by my friend that my coworker's fiancee was very upset that night. Should I reach out to her via Facebook or another way and apologize and explain? I do not want to cause problems in their relationship.

TL;DR: I quit before they could fire me. I am looking to get a job at my alma mater near where I grew up and into therapy. Made some mistakes even after I posted this. Don't want to do that again, so should I reach out to his fiancee and apologize or not?

Not long after posting, OP shared a small update.

EDIT Seeing as many people have made the comment about it being stupid to quit because I would lose unemployment benefits, I would not have gotten them in my state if I was fired for s#xual h#rassment. They had plenty of evidence, so I would prefer to not have to explain why I was fired to the next company I apply to. I may have made some bad choices, but I am not that dumb.

The comments kept coming in.

sapphirelion86 wrote:

OP, I seriously don’t know if you are purposely this naive, in need of strong therapy or a healthy mix of both.

First, don’t try to justify your assault and harr*ssment as “everyone does stupid things” at holiday parties or saying “but my roomate pregamed too!” You need to fully grasp and understand that this goes beyond goofy dancing or saying an odd joke. You. Harr*ssed. Someone. Stop minimizing it.

Second. You having to even ask about contacting the fiancee is strong evidence of lack of introspection. respect. awareness, and overall common sense. Stop inserting yourself in their lives! Understand that you are a blip that will be forgotten once you are long gone and they are exchanging vows. You are a 24 year old woman. You need to start grasping the seriousness of all this.

OP responded:

I am sorry if it came off as I was minimizing or excusing my actions. When I was saying that everyone does stupid things, that was what I was telling myself right after. It is not what I believe now. What I did went above and beyond and doing anything like this is not okay.

As for my roommate, I was saying that before I would've thought that was okay. Now, it is something I warned her against doing. Of course, she did not do anything like me, but she has been known to do some stupid things while dr*nk.

chroma_sparkles wrote:

What's done is done. No need to apologize to the coworkers fiancee. It'd be unnecessary, really. Most likely you'll never see/speak to your male coworker again. His fiancee will move on. And you should too.

Lesson learned, I hope.

The-Jesus_Christ wrote:

"My advice to people is to not drink too much at a work event and to be professional there."

This is why I hold my company Xmas party on Thursday or Sunday. Knowing you still have to come to work the next day hopefully means you'll be a bit more sensible.

Too many employees over the years did what you have done. I don't like firing people before Xmas. SInce implementing that change of day, it's almost come down to zero.

Devilis6 wrote:

Since your coworker asked you not to speak to him, I’d assume he also doesn’t want you to speak with his fiancée, either. Therefore, I’m not sure an apology would be welcomed from them. I think it’s best to give them their space here.

Sources: Reddit
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