I have a crush on a younger coworker

Send your own relationship/dating/breakup/holiday questions to [email protected] or use this form.

So, I have never written to an advice column before. But I read yours every week and thought I would throw something out there, just for fun. I don't actually have a terrible problem, but am amused by something that is happening in my mind, surprising me. I am 58, was married many years ago; since my husband died, I have had two boyfriends but nothing for about 15 years now, and I have no interest in being part of a couple again.

But now I seem to have a crush on a coworker. We are professional colleagues and get along greatly, share a sense of humor, and help each other get through each day at work with others who drive us nuts. Here's the funny part: he is only 25. Obviously, I am older than his mother. Lately I have been having dreams in which he and I are flirting, and even holding hands and stuff. I am sure he would be horrified by this. I am not even asking "What should I do?" I just find this a little weird. What do you think?

– 58


Not so weird. Fantasies are fantasies. As long as you keep this to yourself and have clear boundaries in real life, it seems OK.

I don't think it's unusual to think about someone who brings you joy. I'm not even sure if this is a significant crush; it all sounds pretty G-rated, honestly. My first thought was that you're remembering a part of your brain you've ignored for a bit. It's not even about longing for him, but about missing a time when you were into people like that.

I won't tell you that your drive to think about him off-hours means you want a romantic partner all of a sudden. It doesn't sound like you do.

It does make me think you'd like to connect with that part of yourself – the part that has crushes, gets excited about someone, etc. – even if it's on your own, in your home, and no one else's business. Healthy fantasies, in my opinion, keep us creative and, well, healthy. I bet there are other possible objects of affection if you really look around.

I guess I'll just say the thing about keeping it to yourself one more time for good measure. He's a coworker. You know that. Enjoy his company. Don't make it weird.

Crushes are everywhere. Thank you for writing.

– Meredith

Readers? Thoughts on some simple fantasies and what they might mean?