Columns Nov 27, 2013 at 4:00 am

Slam Bam


November 27th?!?
The chances that the boss will not find out seem...slim. So, perhaps the best thing would be to casually run the idea by the boss. Not in graphic words, but just mention that the son is very mature for his age and you would love to get to know him better.
@2 You are suggesting that SON ask her boss's permission to mess around with his kid? Seriously?
@3 I would say that sleeping with the boss's kid is a bad idea and SON shouldn't do it, if she does do it then finding how the Dad feels wouldn't be a bad idea.'

Is he an overprotective Dad or one willing to overlook a few late nights with his subordinate?
@2 That has to be the most ridiculous thing I've read in awhile. Even if her boss was cool with it, wouldn't it damage his image of her as his protégé? And how would the son feel knowing she got permission from his dad?
Love the answer to WIFE.
well reverse the genders, if your young male protege expressed an interest in your daughter, wouldn't you consider it a courtesy to mention it before it became a real issue? if she wants a relationship with this guy, she could wait for the situation to ripen further. if she just wants to hit it and quit it, she should hit something else because her career is going to outlast her lust.
Of course NIPPLES should tell the BF. Not because he's likely to find out, but because it's likely to happen again. If not with this woman, then with someone else. If he's fine with that, it'll be a load off her mind to know she can do it in future. If he's not fine with that, that's something she needs to learn now.
@6 It was exactly what I was thinking when I read the letter. I was amused that the answer didn't even bother to explain why that is so obviously a bad idea.
2. It's sloppy to edit the gender identifiers out of a letter while leaving a gender-specifying response. True, it might well liven things up on occasion if all the letters were edited to be gender-neutral and the genders involved were revealed at the end of the column.

4. Anyone at all familiar enough with Miss Austen to know that she did not write romance novels would be aware of the fact that the it is remarkably easy to find a substitute for a gorgeous 18-year-old; a mentor, not so much. Mr Savage is fairly clearly telling her to do it while saying he can't tell her to do it (cowardly or overly coy?) Doing the kid would also be an EXTREMELY UNFEMINIST ACT. Feminists are constantly berating male employers and executives for NOT MENTORING YOUNG WOMEN, and telling them in no uncertain terms that they just have to get over their not wanting to look as if they're behaving inappropriately. They have NO sympathy for successful men who don't want to appear to the casual view indistinguishable from the colleague who just settled a sexual harassment suit. And now here we have a LW whose male boss MENTORS YOUNG WOMEN APPROPRIATELY, and she wants to ruin that forever for all the other young women he will refuse to mentor in the future?

1. I have to pass on this one - the concept of LDIBs on any human of any gender just eludes me. FTWL...

3. This letter appears to be the love child of Savage Family Values and The Opposite of Sex. While I fear that Mr Savage's No is the heteronormative kind as in simply not doing a spouse's blood relations because Family Reunion Uber Alles, I thank him for not specifying that. Without perhaps being exactly anti-gay, this question is downright insulting even without calculating in the likelihood that Husband wants his brother to be converted. Even if this were a friend instead of a brother, the question only becomes acceptable with a LOT more knowledge than the LW indicates possessing in this case. Oh, the presumptions. LW might get a pass for wrongly presuming that anal is on EHGLB's menu, but presuming he receives is another step along; some exclusive tops get a bit huffy about being mistaken. But to presume that someone is either bi-curious or so into being on the receiving end of a certain act that he'll override his sexual orientation for it is in a different league.
I know you get some "OMG" type questions, Dan, but WIFE's kinda leaves my jaw hanging.

As a bisexual woman, I've heard lots of "snappy" one-liners when people find that out about me. "Greedy", "slutty", "make up your mind", etc. I'll spare you my standard whining about it, 'cause I've done that here already. But.

I don't know if anything I've read in this column recently rankles me like WIFE's letter. All the assumptions about her husband's brother; the denial of/disrespect to his orientation..and it's his BROTHER. Why not try to find some random kinky straight dude to peg, who isn't one's brother-in-law?
SON: You are pretty much guaranteed to fuck up your relationship with your boss and your career. Whether this is worth it or not to you is another question altogether, but don't believe the hypotheticals flying about above me. It's career suicide/interpersonal poison.

WIFE: You'd be asking your husband permission to fuck his brother. Gay, dildo, joking aside, that's what you're asking. Let that sink in and then answer your own hypothetical question.

HNU: No, it's not normal. It is, however, working- at least according to you. So, better question, does it need to be normal for you?

NIPPLES: Just tell him. It's a minor infraction at best, and if finds out through someone else it'll be a bigger deal than it ever should have been. Tell him.
Oh! & @12 is totally right, SON. I know there's the whole "road not traveled"/"hot young guy not jumped" dilemma, but mentors are much harder to find than incredibly jump-able slightly younger men. I think Dan is putting himself in your shoes, & giving you permission to do what he'd do. But a mentor/mentee relationship, if positive, is to be hugely valued as you start your career. Don't take it lightly.

If you make some professional move where your relationship w/ your mentor changes, then maybe look up the cutie for some fun. But jeez, don't do it now.
@2, did I read that right? You think the best plan is for SON to "casually run the idea by the boss that the kid is "mature for his age" and she'd "like to get to know him better?"

Crikey. That didn't sound creepy at all.

SON, enjoy the flirtation, but as the saying goes, don't shit where you eat. It's not a great time to be job-hunting.
15 would you feel if you had a sister who was, let's say, tall. And your husband always wanted to sleep w a tall woman. Would you be ok w that, not to mention future holiday dinners, where it would be so incredibly awkward?!
@14 thank for the use of Crikey, always a plus.

WIFE is dilluded and absurdly entitled. Oh my hubby's ass isn't capable, gay little bro, step right up! Wtf?

I guess banging an 18 year old would be fun but I'm guessing she can find another one to fuck more easily than she could escape the scorched earth of her reputation should her mentor find out.

Official declaration of love or no, is it a great plan to move across the country with a significant other of less than a year with whom you've never fought? I don't think so but I also don't think it would be smart to move in under such circumstances and they've done that-with apparent success so wtf do I know? Since things seem to be working, realize that what he does is and always will be far more important than what he says. If he treats you with love and tenderness I would guess the words will follow. Best of luck.
That SON knows that her boss's son is horny doesn't strike me as odd. Most 18 year old boys are. That she knows he has some seriously unexplored kinks indicates that a line has already been crossed. How exactly did this subject come up?

Taking a younger employee under your wing as a mentee is a wonderful thing. Inviting her over to your house on occasion also seems appropriate. But this boss & wife pair have invited their young protege into their home often enough and put her together with their son often enough that SON is thinking about the son in sexual terms. How exactly did that happen? What sort of sexual kinks are there that most 18 year old girls aren't interested in but that one random 23 year old is? Again, this indicates that a line has already been crossed.

A normal mentor/mentee relationship, even a close one, doesn't normally come to this. Normally a boss will invite his mentee over to the house on the occasional holiday or perhaps for the office Christmas party. Normally, introductions are made to the boss's family, hands are shook, and there's a little small talk. The rest of the mentoring takes place in a business context.

When I first read the letter, I jumped to the conclusion that SON was crazy to consider such a thing for all the reasons mentioned above. Now I believe SON is crazy to consider such a thing, AND she should draw away from the kind of creepy closeness her boss seems to be fostering.
Just a note for HNU - my girlfriend and I have been together a few years now. We don't live together.

We have never said the love word. Frankly, it's not something either of us are terribly comfortable with. Instead, we say "I like you." A lot. All the time. And this works for me because I think you can love someone without liking them. I think love can easily be taken for granted. But reminding your significant other that you genuinely like them and enjoy being around them...that is much more satisfying to me.

So yes, I find this normal that you haven't said the love word yet. I don't even find it necessary. Find your own way of expressing it :)
I love Dan's response to Nipple - weighing a right to know against the likelihood of finding out. I would add a third consideration: ramifications of getting caught.

Nipple - don't confess. Chances of him finding out are slim unless you have very bad taste in friends. Even if he does find out, you will be forgiven. 20-something bisexual girls who bring in other women for threesomes with their boyfriend are in high demand and short supply. I can't imagine this nipple slip would threaten the relationship if discovered. You will be forgiven.
A couple of lines from SON's letter:

Normally, I wouldn't sleep with anyone younger than 20. But ...
Well that's different. So long as there's some reason the situation involves Very Special Snowflakes and this will totally be unlike all those other times people want to fuck the barely legal, but did NOT find the barely legal to be hot.

He has some serious unexplored kinks that most girls his age have no interest in.
How the hell does this come up in casual conversation with... well, just about anyone? Anyone for whom, for reasons of being in high school or being closely associated with your work, you should have some sort of filters installed?

Unlike 17 I am inclined to place the blame squarely on LW and the kid: I envision a couple of family dinners where the two were briefly alone while mom and dad got food on the table, one of them crossed a line, the other went all flirty rather than shutting it down, and it has since devolved into a creepy 'whenever mom and dad leave the room we start talking about piss play.' LW, your job as a grown-up AND as someone who wants to work with kid's father was to shut that down, not go all giggly flirty and check his ID for whether it would technically be illegal to bang him.
Ms Hopkins - Ooh, agreement!

Ms Crinoline - Well, you have illustrated my not-all-that-less-than-serious point about why some opposite-sexer men don't mentor female employees - the police state that surrounds such relationships. My father's business partner mentored a male employee who ended up marrying his daughter, and I know of other relationships that began in this vein. In my experience (yours may be different), mentoring takes on wider scope, and is highly likely to include out-of-office activities such as golf, tennis or even bridge, and occasional invitations to dinner or home-based social events, especially when the employee is unattached, are not uncommon.

For a parallel, I'll refer to Episode 5.7 of QAF, in which Lindsay, separated from Mel(anie) and short on cash, accepts with some misgivings her mother's invitation to move back home. On her first evening, she's persuaded not to have a light meal in her room because Mom planned a little welcome home dinner with one couple of old family friends and a mentee of Daddy's. If you want nefarious, look no farther. The younger generation are left to themselves after dinner and talk a little about co-parenting pre-schoolers. He asks her to what seems a lunch date rather than just lunch, prompting the Lesbian Clarification. This leads to the revelation that Mentee, when he was invited, had been told by Mom that Lindsay had just broken up - with a man. Naughty Mrs Peterson!

If the letter were not less than a week removed, I should think a Thanksgiving party might be just the occasion on which a slight acquaintance from a few meetings might well ripen into the LW's flagrant lust. They might have been the only two people under 40 in attendance at such, and Thanksgiving events tend to be of fairly long duration - plenty of time for long, flirtatious and deeply personal conversations. Obviously, nobody can say that Boss *isn't* fostering a creepy closeness. But this is hardly Pride and Prejudice, in which dining in company four times and spending four evenings together are presumed not to have give Jane Bennet and Bingley the opportunity to establish much more than whether each prefers Vingt-un to Commerce. Even then, after four evenings, dancing together twice at a ball, and one morning call as part of a large party, Jane was in a way to be very much in love. Perhaps it's shortsighted of Boss not to consider this possible development - but in And Then There Were None, General Macarthur was pleased when his 29-year-old wife took what appeared to be a motherly interest in his 28-year-old officer.

I'm not particularly pro-Boss. But, if you want opposite-sexer men to mentor female employees at the same level as that at which they mentor male employees, the increased scrutiny reasonably attached to the relations of opposite-sexer men with unpartnered women will prevent or at least hamper that. Reduce the level of scrutiny to that of M-M mentoring and the wiggle room for fostering creepy closeness increases. That leaves limiting what is acceptable M-M mentoring to what would would pass scrutiny in M-F mentoring, which seems hardly enforceable and has a taste of the not-long-past sad (for those who found themselves on the wrong team at the wrong time) occurrences of universities unable to field enough extra women's teams being forced to cut men's teams to comply with Title IX - producing an acceptable outcome, but really not the way one wanted to get there.
I think once you are a year or two out of high school, you should look outside of the nation's high schools for your fuck buddies. Every creepy guy hanging out at the pizza place checking IDs to see if the wide-eyed nymphettes are legal has a story about the special connection forged via her unusual maturity for her age and blah blah. If you just can't find anyone with whom you forge that special connection except for the wide-eyed still-living-at-home kids, you probably need to work on yourself.

But that aside: JESUS WOMAN HE'S YOUR BOSS'S KID. Do not fuck your boss, your boss's spouse, or your boss's high-school-age kids if you want to have any professional credibility.

And Dan, I am disappointed in you just because of the whole "but would anyone find out?" thing: office romances are notorious for announcing themselves to the entire office, who are seething about not getting to use the copier and the favoritism and whatever else while the participants innocently imagine that they are subtle and no one imagines what's going on when the door to the copy room starts shaking. What, she's going to start ducking out of the office to fuck him after school, as high school students do? And when a parent figures out what's going on... There's LW, someone with no self-control, judgment, filters, ability to evaluate long-term risks, etc etc, clutching her bra and giggling "Well gosh I hope this isn't going to affect our professional relationship in any way, Mr. Smith."
I do like LW1's "right not to know," such a refreshing change from people who are wracked with guilt and figure dumping everything on their partner would be a way to alleviate it. And Dan's caution that this always be weighed against your partner's right to find stuff out from you, in private, and not be blindsided by a third party who thought (s)he knew all that stuff already.
NIPPLES illustrates an important lesson: "My partner would be okay with this if circumstances were different" is not a license to do it.

This seems to come up a lot: "My partner is okay with me fucking other people as long as they wear a condom. Therefore, it's okay to fuck this guy without a condom, since it would be okay if he was wearing a condom."

Um, no? Conditional approval is conditional, folks.

That said, tell him anyway. Both for damage control reasons, and because he deserves to know who he's dating. He will almost certainly be fine with it.

SON is a creeper. SON: Stop being a creeper. Being a creeper is not good for anyone, and being a creeper has never helped anyone achieve their goals.
@1 There are two November 27ths this year. The next time that happens won't be until 42096, so just roll with it.
I think 5 years is a lot when it covers the period of "still in highschool" to "finished college" - that's a huge difference in life experience. SON sounds like she's looking for an extremely casual hookup. But just because the 18-year old is a kinky male doesn't mean he couldn't be sensitive/romantic/vulnerable to delusions about how serious their "relationship" is. If SON pursues this and he gets hurt, what will be the backlash? This is foolishly risky.
Oh man...I'm not psyched about this, but nomex suit on, lets just consider the gender/sexes involved here:

- NIPPLES - yes, tell him, WTF? You've already played together and gone "further" than just some nipple licking. Plus, he's a dude...if he's already cool with some g/g action, hearing about your hot little escapade will far more likely excite him than than make him insecure and jealous. You can couch it in, "hey I'm really sorry, I got hammered and screwed up". This is not like confessing you had a monogamous relationship with no others and then fucked someone while you were on a business trip.

- WIFE - While I can very much appreciate the need for discretion regarding siblings of SOs - having experienced lust for sisters of SOs (and a mother or two as well) - if your HUSBAND suggested it AND it's a role-reversal, he's likely to be cool with it. His little brother might be too. Plus, you share no genes.

I totally get "don't shit where you eat" - and that certainly applies to all of these letters, but sometimes you have to consider what the real risk of your actions coming off as shit are. Which brings us to:

- SON - I say go for it. He's of legal age. You need to make it a condition of not telling his parents and behave with extreme discretion. His father (see a theme here folks? What does Dan say - correctly - about men? Oh, right, we're pigs) is not likely to feel you've violated his son so much as "whoa, my kid is such a stud". I just don't think this is all that crazy risky - but serious discretion is in order.

I've got nothing for HNU except, jeebus, you'll move across the country with him but are afraid to broach this? Get over that tentativeness now before you wind up with more serious problems than being stuck in the wrong place.
NIPPLES: Tell your boyfriend. Period. Be honest, have the small fight, and resolve it. And you, Dan Savage, gave atrocious advice to NIPPLES by saying her playing with her friend's breasts falls under the column of "Right not to know." While I generally agree with you that sometimes lying is better, (Being asked "Do I look fat in these jeans?" comes to mind) in any topic that deals with the dynamics of a relationship, there should never even be a "Right not to know" column. If she doesn't communicate with him, then she is robbing her partner of his right to choose what kind of relationship he wants, and robbing herself of what she might want as well. My wife is bi, and while we've had our fun, we work because we've communicated our interests and boundaries, not slunk behind the other person's back then didn't tell them. You yourself have advocated for people in sexless marriages to at least tell their spouse about their wish to cheat, so at least they're just cheaters not lying cheaters. And before you respond with the typical "why end a relationship over something so small?" I will say that any guy who would end a relationship over something trivial doesn't deserve all the threesomes he's getting.
21-Mr. Ven-- I respectfully disagree.

Allow me to draw an analogy. If someone crosses a line and turns shopping into shoplifting, the problem is with the shoplifting, not with shopping, and not with the security guards. It's certainly not with the general idea that stealing in nearly all circumstances is wrong. The problem is with the crime, not the police who enforce it. If someone crosses a line and turns mentoring into inappropriate sexual liaisons, the problem is not with mentoring or with the social "police state" do the enforcing. If men are avoiding mentoring young women for this reason, it would make more sense for them to avoid inappropriateness than to avoid mentoring.

The question for me is who's at fault for it getting this far. I'll amend my earlier statement (17) which seems puts most of the blame on the mentor for creepily putting LW too much in his private life and come a little closer to IPJ's point (20) that LW and 18 year old son have a fair share of the culpability. I do not see the LW as a damsel in distress completely at the whim of her evil older mentor, nor do I give the 18 year old son that role. I don't see this as an either/or sort of thing.

We really need the answers to the not-so-rhetorical questions I asked earlier to make any judgments. How did the subject turn to kinks? How is that SON has been around 18yo long enough to know him that well? Who started it, and once started, why wasn't it ended?
For the bosses son, she knows about his kinks, so apparently she and the boy have spoken at length. That being the case, the only way for her desired hookup to happen safely would be for her to tell the son that she can't/won't do anything with him because she works with the father. She should not suggest the boy seek permission, but if the boy is really interested and he has a good relationship with his father, and is mature enough to consider these things, he may then approach his father and say, "Hey, can I hit on your underling?"

At which point father can either say, "No, I can't risk a sexual harassment lawsuit," or he can go to his employee and say, "My son tells me he's into you - this is awkward, but if you and he pursued something I'd be okay with it as long as you treat him respectfully and don't get preggers."
@27: Re WIFE, the go-for-it advice makes sense only if the husband was dead serious in his suggestion, vs joking, about which I'm very dubious. A joke to dispel the tension over the Thing That You're Saying No To. The fact that she thinks the next move is she raises it with the brother, vs she and husband talk about limits and expectations and then he raises it, feels like extracting permission to cheat under the guise of joking around about it.

Re SON, "You need to ... behave with extreme discretion."
Umm, what part of "whenever his mom goes to get more mashed potatoes, I start talking about kinky fantasies with the kid" suggests either one of them has a lick of discretion?
@20 - you are way overthinking this. She's hot, 23 and closer in age/culture/maturity to the son than to the parents. No doubt the 18 year old was testing the waters and brought it up. This is way less creepy than it's being made out to be. I remember quite well being 18 and working alongside some young 20-somethings and there was enough sexual tension and innuendo to cut with a's NORMAL ($deity forbid we should be normative).

And this is why I put on my Nomex: if the genders were reversed people'd be screaming about child abuse. And yes, it would be insanely dangerous for SON to dabble in...which, come to think of it, if SON is male and gay, it is quite dangerous.

Instead, the father has probably at least thought about banging his 23 year old protege and would be perfectly happy for his son to get what is verbotten for dad.
@29: "Who started it, and once started, why wasn't it ended?"

This is all on the letter writer. She's an adult, and not crossing lines with someone still in high school, or with whom you have a workplace power dynamic--even if he's cute--is baseline grown-up behavior. Even if he did start the kink-talk, she could say no, and should have.

My husband and his brother both had mentors, from undergrad and grad school respectively, with whom they had ongoing friendships including spouses and kids on get-togethers. We stayed with them a few times when we went back to visit. LW seems determined to blow this for everyone by embodying "But you can't have this type of relationship with a young female mentee because she won't keep her panties on."
@32: I think the age thing is a small factor, the "still in high school and living under his parents' roof and rules" is a larger one ("so and so is super mature, I can tell because they want to bonk me" being a rather self-serving definition of maturity and immaturity), and the big one is the potential flamethrower to her aspirations of being taken seriously in this field.

What's she going to say at her next interview, "Yes, I have excellent judgment and long-term planning skills, and I am careful and conscientious. Unless you have any hot high schoolers living at home, then I'm jumpin' em! Ha ha. As you've no doubt heard from everyone at my old office. But outside of that, I am a very mature person who will not create drama in the office."
@32: What if she isn't hot? What if she's homely and awkward and he's a dick playing "Let's see if I can get the socially-clueless girl to talk kink with me"?

The fallout isn't like if she (or a gay he) bonked an 18-year-old high schooler from the ice cream stand, where as messy as it got with lovelorn stalking or cruel taunting or all the other things that can go wrong, it wasn't likely to splurt over her professional reputation.

Also, actual ages aside, it is a terrible idea to convey at work, "In terms of maturity level I'm a lot closer to high school students than I am to my co-workers."

(Whom I bonk and how I treat them seems to be the one area in which people want an immaturity pass ("I am but a wee young thing of 31, and so cannot be expected...") while insisting that they should be taken as totally mature and responsible in all other aspects of their life, especially work.)
Ms Crinoline - I'll roll with a shopping analogy. You have heard, I assume, of the dastardly crime of Shopping While Black. Opposite-sexer men mentoring young women are in something of the same boat. Keeping with your shopping analogy, let us imagine two stores comparable in goods, pricing and convenience of location. Do you shop at Isobel's, where the staff are friendly and helpful but don't approach you unless you look indecisive or in need of assistance, or at Violet's, where the security guards follow you with high obtrusivity from the moment you enter until the moment you leave while not paying similar attention to other shoppers, and the sales staff approaches you every other minute or so and treats you clearly as an interloper (reminiscent of Miss Gorringe when Ladislav Malinowski graces the hallowed presence of Bertram's Hotel)? To be fair to Violet's, I'll grant that you fit the demographic of the store's shoplifters, which is not the case at Isobel's. Given such conditions, you might shop at Violet's if the store became the exclusive local distributor of, say, Fuzzy Wuzzy Wee Bits (Ms Driasis will get the reference), but for general shopping you'd presumably stick to Isobel's.

[If men are avoiding mentoring young women for this reason, it would make more sense for them to avoid inappropriateness than to avoid mentoring.] That sentence reminds me so much of *Rumpole and the Age for Retirement* in which Chief Inspector Broom (or Brush, given the authorial vagaries that did such things as make Tristan and Isolde Erskine Brown twins when Tristan was clearly born two or three books before Isolde and change the names of Guthrie Featherstone's children from Arabella and Luke to Simon and Sarah) saying that he has no intention of letting Percy Timson talk to his solicitor because, if he's an innocent man, he doesn't need a lawyer.

Some men avoid mentoring women because they are going to be policed and the risk of accusation rises to where it's a greater influence than the reward. Keeping with our shopping theme, you try on a bracelet and you're looking at it from different angles when you're accused of trying or intending to steal it. Now I quite agree that heightened scrutiny both internal and external is reasonable or indeed appropriate when dealing with subordinates who fit the category of those to whom one is sexually attracted (whether this makes things harder or easier for executives of the bisexual persuasion would make my head spin).

While I give you credit for amending, just the appearance of accusation is what some men fear, even when it's just a first reaction later adjusted.

I'll agree that some lengthy cross-examination seems well in order. Culpability seems a shade strong, though. An adult (more or less) has had conversations with a legal (quasi-)adult on topics outside of the range generally considered socially acceptable for people of their relative stations. Thank you for what I'll take to be agreement that Boss is probably not Mrs Peterson. I'm not sure what blame it ought to be possible to cast on Junior.

If I were going to make this into a fiction, I think I'd make it like the Midsomer Murder *Written in Blood* (pretentiously "street" drama teacher is on the receiving end of seductive gestures from his prettiest student, makes a compromising confession to his wife and then finds out it was cooked up by the whole class as the "coup de theatre" he told them to work up) - LW would send her boss a confessional email and only afterwards be told by Junior that he's sorry, but he just made all that stuff up for a hoot because she was eating it up and besides, she's too old for him.

I'm curious - how likely do you think it is that, should the pair actually enact Mr Savage's fantasy, be so good as to send him pictures, and then either tell Boss or be found out, Boss would ever mentor another young woman? Whatever his private attitude might be, I'd say - at least not to the same extent as this one so long as he's married.
Re NIPPLES, here's the part I focus on:
"We've hooked up ... but always as a couple because it makes us both feel safe"

Assuming that means they had an explicit agreement to stick to threesomes, maybe it's time to discuss revising that agreement.

By not telling, you commit to never doing it again. But maybe, if she found it fun, she should at least raise the possibility. That is, if she can tolerate the idea of her boyfriend doing the same when she's not there.
Mr Finch - You are omitting Junior's Other Parent. Even if Boss has as little character as you suggest, Junior does have a mother, and LW has met her and received her hospitality. It's the flip side of Lucy Angkatell in The Hollow realizing that, no matter how much she wants Henrietta to marry Edward and how likely that would be if she were "accidentally" to shoot Henrietta's lover John, she had invited John and Gerda for the weekend, and one couldn't murder someone one had invited oneself.
The advice to SON seems so obvious: DON'T unless you don't value your job, your career (at least in the short term) and the importance of a mentor (good mentors don't appear magically like the Room of Requirement (terms a 23-year-old might understand)).

Fuck an 18-year-old? Fine. One who is still in HS? Creepy for a 23-year-old college graduate who is aware of the HS status but fine. One who is in HS and the son of your (choose): family friend, boss, teacher, etc. No. There are plenty of people to sleep with and just because you CAN does not mean you SHOULD. I liken it to sleeping with a person in a committed relationship. If you don't know about the relationship (you met in a bar, a cafe, etc.), no problem. If you know about it but you know it is open/monogamish, no problem. If you know about it and know that the couple (or at least the non-interested person) considers the relationship to be exclusive, big problem. And if you go through with it, you are an asshole no matter how hot, horny and available the other person is to you.

While the fucking pool is not infinite, it is pretty damn big for 23-year-olds. SON can regret having crossed a boundary (knowing your boss's son's kinks? uh, someone has problems and it is the older of the two unless he simply blurted it out suddenly) and then go find a place where 18-year-olds gather. Dollars to donuts she'll meet an attractive, funny, kind and sweet young man with unexplored kinks with whom she can build a mighty campfire.
The SON situation seems irrevocably screwed up already and the LW needs to let go, step away, and move on.

IF it was ever going to happen, and IF the boss's kid is actually mature beyond his years, this is the only way it could have happened:

1) Kid has to not only come on to her, but ask her out on a normal date, like dinner and/or a movie.

2) LW has to say, "I'm flattered, but you need to get your father's permission to even ask me out, because I work for him, and I'm not saying if I even would agree to go out with you."

3) Kid has to jump through flaming hoops, somehow convince dad, and then make a semi-decent show at wooing LW to the point where she'd agree to go out with him.

3a) Meanwhile, the LW has to play it cool, especially when the boss asks her if she's interested in the kid. "He's a nice kid, but he's a little young for me. I've enjoyed our conversations, but I'm not sure he's mature enough."

4) THEN, depending how things develop, maybe something might be possible. But, only if the dad is okay with his kid wooing his employee.

In other words, kid has to take the senior role and be clearly seen by his father as the pursuer. Any other way, no.

Gay little brother = piece of meat to be pimped out?


Besides, not even all gay men like the anal poke.
SON: Just no. It's rude and disrespectful to your boss. Find another guy.

NIPPLES: Tell him because it's a hot situation and, if it were me, I'd find it impossible not to instantly rip your clothes off. There's a bit of cuckolding in there, but not so much as to be a problem. It's just hot!
@39: Good mentors don't appear magically.

The naivete about how hard a good mentor, job, and boss are to come by, much less all three together shortly out of college, is forehead-smacking.
AFinch @27- you really think SON's boss would send high fives to all concerned if (more likely when) he finds out? Leave aside your belief that Dad would be cool with his out of college employee fucking at his house (or hosting his son for sex romps at her place). Also leave aside Ven's very good point @38 that mom would be unlikely to feel equally proud.

Would you honestly respect such a woman's judgment to advance in your company? I employ dozens of college age women and I can't think of a quicker way for them to be taken less seriously and completely derailed from their career than to sleep with my business partners' high school aged kids.
For SON...

What about paying attention to the son a little in front of Dad and if he seems cool about it....suggest going to the mall or maybe a movie? Just some innocent things to test the water?
what would "necessary trauma" be?!
@45: you nailed it. I would just shake my head if my employee slept with my still in HS kid. I would not be high-fiving anyone.

I'd also be consulting with a lawyer to find out just how much exposure my company would have if I fired the 23-year-old. There is a real risk of a sexual harassment claim since she could claim that she felt like she had no choice but to give in to the 18-year-old. Now, perhaps that's protection for SON if she decides to go ahead (and I am guessing she has gone forward with this, especially since her rationalizations are clear in her letter) and that's all kind of fucked up (that her lack of judgment ends up protecting her). (Disclosure: I am a lawyer and I don't think it would be a stretch for SON to turn this into some valuable protection for her job status and that makes me shudder)

If I learned that my son was considering this, I'd tell him to stay the fuck away (not that it would do any good) and go spend some time at the local college if he wants to hook up with an older woman.
@34 - All of what you cite is why I say "exercise discretion". She's not having a long-term "mentorship" with her boss - she's around for a few more months (through the summer suggests this is an old letter). This is not the same thing as a faculty advisor in graduate school.

@35 - If he's the one 'taking advantage' of her then so much for the naive young innocent being corrupted by the big bad vamp. The rest of your comment is more "aaaaieee...don't shit where you eat". Being discreet means don't brag around the office.

@38 - I have no idea what story your lit ref. refers to, but the excerpt seems...irrelevant. No, mom probalby wouldn't high-five but I'm betting, again, that with a little discretion, mom wouldn't find out...from junior or dad.

I have vivid memories of sleeping with 20-somethings as a 17-18 something and I sure as hell didn't talk to my parents about it.

@45 - I have mentored younger people - both younger women and men - and younger women I'd be delighted to bonk if it weren't creepy and inappropriate - due to the imbalance of power. I also work very hard to separate the private life from the professional and to judge people by the quality of their work and their conduct - in the office...'cause, you know, private life and shit. If someone created office drama by dating someone inside the office and causing bad feelings - unlike, um, say junior (who is in HS) - that would be an issue.

This is not a risk free proposition, but life is not risk free and this doesn't strike me as terribly dangerous. Have junior over to your private place and have your kinks there..don't do it at his house or the office and don't talk about it.

The whole nutty idea of doing it as a straight up out in the open date is just...nuts.

On older men mentoring young women: yes, this is absolutely the conclusion suspicious minds jump to, and it's always a good idea to never be alone in private.

Finally, on WIFE: no, younger brother isn't a whore to be pimped out, but older bro might've talked (inquired) to his younger bro about being on the receiving end...younger brother might be just fine with it and not even slightly put off.

The point being: men are pigs, by and large, and as such, are much less likely to be offended at someone succumbing to a moment's lust, so long as the moment's lust doesn't involve a loss of face or status for the man involved.
"One day he walked into the boss's office and announced,

Unless she is in education or is really a he, then this really isn't the same.
@49 She's not having a long-term "mentorship" with her boss - she's around for a few more months.

I had to go back and reread to see where you got the idea this was a short-term job, and I'm guessing it's about how she wants to spend "the next few months" bonking the kid? (From which you also deduced the letter was from early in the summer, not recent.) The way most of us are interpreting the few months is "obviously no long-term potential, but a few months of secret kinky sex until we both get bored at the same time would be fun." The job is assumed to be a real job at which she does not want to look pathetic.

It's not like that sort of hook-up has never worked out okay for people--that's not why people think this is a terrible idea. But mild worst-cases do come true and having them splat unpleasantly at the office with people you can't avoid and whose opinion of you matters makes it much worse. Say things end messily, with hurt feelings and seething resentment that make everyone in the same room with you two uncomfortable: how awkward is that going to be? How about if your dumped paramour watches a bunch of romantic comedies and marches up to your desk (or into reception) to deliver a grand speech about how he knows you told him to stay away but the two of you are meant to be, Binkie Boo, and he is here to fight for your future?
@51 - I take your point about the perspective on the job - yes, if she's starting a long-term stint, then the risk is much higher. Even if not, yes, she'd be taking a risk. If she wants to play it 100% safe, then don't bonk him.


"How about if your dumped paramour watches a bunch of romantic comedies and marches up to your desk (or into reception) to deliver a grand speech about how he knows you told him to stay away but the two of you are meant to be, Binkie Boo, and he is here to fight for your future?"

Because that happens so often with teenage boys?

C'mon, if the genders were reversed, then I'd be 100% in agreement: put all thoughts of it out of your mind and stay far, far away.

Also: stop conflating fucking his son with fucking the boss himself. Sure, co-workers of any sort having office romances, particularly where a power dynamic exists, is a recipe for disaster because, yeah, you still have to see the person. Yes, if she bonks the son, and the father finds out and disapproves, she'll be looking for a new job either out of discomfort or due to being asked to resign.
Oh, and @31 - where in the letter did you get that SON was asking about son's kinks at the dinner table whenever mom went for more mashed potatoes?

On Dan's response - I am reminded once again what a genius Clemons/Twain was.
How often do teenage boys get their feelings involved? Pretty often. It's not guaranteed, but if she's referencing some "Rulebook on Teenage Boys: 47B, boy will be cool with casual sex completely on your terms, will have no feelings on the matter other than a desire to please you, will not get hurt if you're with other guys, no grumpiness when you decide you're done and moving on" then she should broaden her imagination a bit. Teenage boys have been known to be hurt when they're dumped. Hurt enough to make a scene? Hurt enough to threaten to tell someone The Big Secret? Those seem pretty run-of-the-mill risks if a breakup involves bitterness and anger, hardly unusual.

It's not conflating son and boss. It's that she would be taking two questionable power dynamics--messing with a high school student, and messing with someone where any negativity would blow up on her job--and putting them in a blender figuring "Best case scenario it's all fun secret sex games, right?" She could screw any other high school student and if it came out at work it would be mildly embarrassing and squicky--for that reason alone I'd skip it, and that's the 'to be 100% safe' scenario--but this particular high schooler, because as a hot 23 year old female she just can't find any other funny cute guys she could screw? If the Oh So Super Forbidden and Naughty thing is the key to the attraction, I think sex on dad's desk is more likely than a successful discreet affair.
Mr Finch @49 - You won't make reasonable doubt about WIFE. Now, if gay men were really pigs, there would be nothing wrong at all with putting the question to the brother and expecting him to go along with it; any pig would be so eager to get plugged that he'd have never a scruple about being plugged by a woman, let alone one married to a close blood relation. But I shall give you your due; your being able to view the conversation between brothers as plausible does seem to be a point in favour of your theory as applicable to yourself.

Back to SON, considering that LW not only has accepted Wife's hospitality but presumably will continue to be doing so for some time into the future, it's just a big Thing Not Done - except, perhaps, by swine. And, as you like to make your view of the situation all about gender, I was just reading a study this afternoon about how men's sexual regrets are about inaction and women's are about action. Sex with an inappropriate partner is apparently much more likely to be regretted by a woman (although, apparently, to be fair, if LW happens to be bisexual, she will be close to responding more like men), gender trumping orientation as a determinant. There is a lively debate over interpretation and causation, but I haven't seen anyone disputing the validity of the results.
@54: Where in the letter did you get that SON was asking about son's kinks at the dinner table whenever mom went for more mashed potatoes?

Wait, you think they're discussing his unfulfilled sexual fantasies in front of his parents at these dinners? I think that tacit blessing would have been mentioned.

Any sexual affair that relies on secrecy is risky. If the secrecy fails, how bad are the consequences? A severe talking-to from your parents? The loss of someone important to you, whether that's a primary romantic partner or a friend or a mentor? Embarrassment? Jail? Gossip at work? One of you needing to find a new job? Torching your professional life?

I'm guessing your fondly remembered 17/20 affairs had a potential fallout of a stern talking-to on the young end and not much on the older end, not marking yourself to your employer and co-workers at your real grown-up career as a creeper with no self-control or judgment.
There's roughly a 0% chance that you could fuck someone's child who lives at home with them for months without it being discovered.

So I guess do it if you really want to get fired...?

What kind of job has the requirement of abject stupidity? Is the job title moron?

You want to earn money, or do you want to fuck?

@59 extended:

If that were my child, and you worked for me, I would find it difficult to not want to make it my life's focus to make your back-stabbing little ass into a life long receptacle for my foot. Seriously, there aren't many things that would be more likely to incite rage!

If you have to, do the adult thing: find a new job away from your boss, and wait for kinky junior to graduate high school.

Nobody--nobody--is considering the possibility that SON's boss and boss' wife would be happy to play matchmaker to SON and their son? Not knowing what we know about him being a horn dog and her eyeing him purely for sex, isn't it just a couple of new-to-adulthood youngsters they care about making eyes?

Also, commenters that can't even CONCEIVE of a scenario when SON and the hottie got to talk sexy--hanging out outside the house, hanging out in a different part of the house, on the Internet, maybe??--makes me giggle, in that we apparently had very different home lives.
No way, @61. The Boss takes on a large liability risk by encouraging this type of relationship.

They could have met outside the home, at a company picnic, on the internet. But she KNOWS he's the boss's son. That makes him off limits for a reasonable person. There are just too many people in the deep blue sea to fuck. She needs to stay away from this one.

Business and sex: bad mix. Business sex and very young coed hooked to boss's child: can you say sexual exploitation lawsuit?

IANAL, BUT, this seems so potentially fraught with disaster...

@61: As a parent to a kid about that age, with nieces and nephews ranging up to early twenties: No. High school to post-college is an eyebrow-raising experience gap. Too much assumption that what the older person likes in the high school student is how malleable and unsure of themselves they still are.

I've tried to picture this for my nephews when they were 18 but in high school. I think their dads would have been annoyed and worried if it were a random 23 year old. A 23 year old to whom dad was a trusting mentor climbing in the window at night, that would be enraging.

Though you do hit something that I think matters: to learn your child is having casual sex with age mates would be one thing, and a lot of parents would shrug. To learn that your child is the unworthy-to-date but worthy-to-fuck entertainment for someone five years older--someone you trusted and introduced into the child's life--is a lot more disturbing.

Though it's worth noting that people are noting the barely-legal-still-in-high-school as distasteful, and the don't-fuck-people-who-can-torpedo-your-job as the big thing.
@61 is right to point out that these two young people don't need to talk about kink at the thanksgiving table when they can easily find each other online and chat there into the wee hours.
@65: you are right. I actually wrote a long post that I deleted that went through different scenarios about where they might meet.

But meeting online and chatting about kinks with the boss's son is still poor judgment on SON's part. I can think of situations where it might be a little less creepy (say, boss's son is closer in age, out of college, out of the house) but the it is generally bad judgment to fuck the boss's kid(s), even adult ones. Sure it can work out but as a general rule, I'd look elsewhere and hope my kids so when the time comes.
"chatting about kinks with the boss's son is still poor judgment on SON's part"

@66, @67,

While the Boss's Child is exhibiting poor judgement, SON is raising that bar to potentially legal recrimination for said behavior. Poor Boss, betrayed by some of his nearest and dearest...


What you are concerned about is a verbal label.

Do you feel cared for and fulfilled? Protected and understood? Confident that your future together will be interesting, safe, and fun? Then you're doing better than a lot of people that exercise that verbal label to hold together a proposition that stands altogether more chancy: wishful thinking. Demanding the verbal part of that label shouldn't cause problems, but some people are superstitious about jinxing a good thing by acknowledging it.

This will probably disappear under the unregistered, but oh well.

NIPPLES-- I had a similar scenario, but I was on the other end. I had a FWB. We work in a very flirty environment, and it's a very dating small pool. (We worked on a cruise ship.) My FWB came to me one morning and told me he had spent the night with our coworker. Nothing happened, he assured me. I had no problem with this, (and wouldn't have even if sex had been involved,) and he knew it. We weren't officially dating, so at first I was confused why he even bothered disclosing. He explained, I didn't want you to find out from someone else. Ah! I completely agreed that I would not have liked that, and totally appreciated him telling me. Thanks!

Granted the difference is that we didn't have an exclusive agreement that NIPPLES had, but confessing to a minor, probably forgivable infraction, is probably nicer than blindsiding someone from a third party news drop.

As for SON; I didn't bother reading all the comments, but one of the hallmarks of adult life is learning to control your impulses and also learning that you can't have everything you want right now, and THAT'S OKAY.
Also, a hot 18 year old is probably going to be a hot 20-21 year old, and when you are 25-26, you probably won't be working with his dad anymore. Surely you can control or distance yourself for two years, and let this fling simmer on low until then!

HNU-- That you've never said I-love-you to each other doesn't worry me nearly as much that you say you've never fought. If that means that you've managed to disagree, communicate well, and come to reasonable compromises that respect each of your needs, then great. If it means that you've thus far agreed on everything, then it means you have no practice on how you'll handle it when you do disagree down the road.

Knowing how a couple handles conflict resolution is a big deal in knowing how they'll succeed as a couple over the long haul.

If your definition of not fighting means you don't yell, scream, throw things, hit each other, pout, bring out the silent treatment, storm off, and have revenge sex with other people, then I'm all for not fighting. If it means you think you've somehow found the perfect person with whom you never feel like you want to do one of those awful things, then I-love-you is the least of your worries.
"Son" sounds like she is almost as mature as the high school kid. You have a mentor who is helping you with your career and you are ready to throw it away on a horny HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT. Really!!!??? You think it is a good idea to ask dad if you can hump his teenage son. What an idiot? I hope the kid has the good sense to pass on her.
36- Venn-- It looks like we do disagree. I maintain that Boss started it, is the older and therefore should be the wiser party, and holds the lion's share of the blame for a situation where everyone could clean up their act. I maintain that honest mentoring in a business context is possible, admirable, rewarding, and needn't be complicated by entanglements in the realm of the personal, the familial, or the sexual. It needn't be complicated by the implication or suspicion of those, not if you're playing by the rules in the first place. That said, I won't try to explain myself further since I believe you understand me (while disagreeing) and I understand you (while disagreeing). I did want to state my admiration for your brilliant running with my shopping analogy. Well done.
@57 - Of course I don't think they're discussing it in front of mom and dad...I think they've met, exchanged means of communication and are in contact when mom and dad aren't around.

WRT my own fondly-remembered past: neither of my parents ever said a word to me more than "please use protection" about any of the escapades - this was before HIV was rampant and STD paranoia in general was significantly less. It was also before the age of helicopter parenting. SON could easily be my own child, time-line wise; if I'd had children at the same age as my parents, they'd be older than the boss' child. Perhaps times have changed and parental concerns have shifted.

No, though, while I had plenty of workplace dalliances (this is the food service industry - this stuff comes standard), none of these things involved my parents in any way, so no repercussions for anyone involved. But this brings me back to, why so much fear of repercussions? Although @70 is obtuse trolling the point I've made is that we have a long standing double standard that a daughter's most precious resource to be preserved at all costs is her virgin "purity" while sons should benefit from some experience. I'm hardly defending this (in my perfect world we'd treat both equally, with a bias in favor of experience), merely acknowledging it.

I think @75 is right: BOSS started to mix it up - family, private life with professional life - and SON's not engaging in some shocking morally reprehensible corruption of a minor.

Oh, and though I should really know better, @71 - my point was that F is gay, and the target of F's affections was 14. It's apples-to-oranges, that's all. Plus, SON doesn't say she's going to march in and tell her boss/mentor that she wants to bonk his son all summer - that would be a demonstration of horrible judgment. Doing it discreetly and not creating a scene shows some judgment. Yes, it's a risk but...

If SON is reading this: is your boss nearly as big a prude/safety-nazi as so much of the savage love commenters appear to be (what is up with that anyway)?
Ms Crinoline - It sounds as if we just come out of different mentoring traditions. Fair enough. In your tradition, mentoring stays in the office, and that can certainly work. I'm not sure whether you apply the same standards to the mentoring of a male employee, which changes which of my three paths forward you follow, but we have enough common ground to be able to seek progress.

Glad you appreciated the shopping analogy extension.
@76: I doubt it's reprehensible sexual corruption of a minor--son is at least not shy, though if it turned out he was a virgin who exaggerated his experience to impress a girl I would not need to locate a fainting couch.

My brother-in-law is still good friends, 30 years on, with his thesis adviser. He also started a company where he hired recent grads from his alma mater, and he would sometimes have employees to dinner or to gatherings at his beach house. They would meet his kids. (Heck, they met me and my kids.) And if any of those 23 year olds had been "Hmm... your high school kids are really... sexy. I'll be climbing in a window next week..." I cannot imagine that being in any form good for their career. Whereas if high schooler took up with an older person they met in some other way dad would focus on this being stupid on the kid's part, since the sort of 20-something who's interested in high school students does not tend to be a shining beacon of maturity, impulse control, and good judgment. Those last three being things people want their boss, mentor, professional colleagues etc to think about them is the reason to not let them think you go for high school students you found anywhere, much less by using the office barbecue as your own grindr for locating barely legal targets with whom to talk about your kinky sex interests.

I remember going to family events for my dad's work and my own kids have been to work-related family events (my wife's firm is pretty small and family dinners/summer picnics are not unusual). And back when I was a puppy in my career, I went to "social" dinners at my bosses's homes, with spouses/significant others and, when kids started to appear, with kids. It was not a major part of the job and while these were "optional", you never really wanted to say 'no' to an invitation (and usually the food and drink were great, way nicer than we could afford). This situation does not strike me as unusual. I don't blame Boss at all (based on what we know about the situation)
@ Crinoline
I just don't understand how anyone could blame SON's boss based on the few details provided in the letter. It is not unusual for a boss, even mentor, to invite employees to his/her home. I've had 2 mentors who have invited me to their home, usually for a holiday party or a simple get together with a few other colleagues. My current boss has kids and I (as well as his other employees) have met them a handful times. Just because the LW, has somehow engaged in very intimate discussions with her boss's son about his (the son) sexual desires and kinks, is completely her fault. Even if it was the son that brought up those topics, she should have quickly stopped the conversation and clear set some boundaries about what is appropriate to talk about and what is not.
SON is demonstrating the worst kind of professionalism and showing stupidly poor judgement. It doesn't matter how or under what circumstances she has met her boss' family, having sex with her boss/mentor's underage son is inappropriate. Hell, it is already inappropriate that she's had conversations with his son that lead her to know (or think she knows) about this kid's kinks.

Furthermore, her reasons for being willing to violate her own rules against having sex with someone under 20 are that he's good looking and she seems to think that since the girls his own age won't indulge his kink (and she has no idea whether that's really the case or not), she seems to be obliged to give him what he can't get elsewhere. Oh, and he's horny (as if that's a state of being unique to him). Maybe she's just in "good, helpful employee" mode.

I doubt very much that her boss would approve of his employee/mentee, a 23-year-old adult, one-quarter again as old as his high-school-aged son, taking advantage of the hospitality he's shown her to fuck his kid. Surely she can find some other person to have sex with. She's a 23-year-old woman; there are dozens, if not hundreds of men she can fuck, if what she's looking for is casual sex.

And something tells me that if the 18-year-old hasn't found any girls his own age willing to indulge his kinks, if he's really "very attractive, . . . funny, kind, and sweet," he's not going to have such difficulty finding someone willing or interested in exploring his kinks with him. She doesn't need to "help" the poor kid.

She's an immature idiot and an ingrate, to boot.
If hearing the phrase "I love you" is important to HNU, maybe she should tell her boyfriend that she loves him. Maybe they're playing some game of emotional chicken, and neither wants to say it first. But before they moves across the country, maybe they should be able to have a conversation.
The following got accidentally left out of my comment @82. It should be at the end of the 3rd paragraph:

Good jobs are scarce and hard to come by; good bosses, rare. Mentors can make a huge difference in one's career trajectory. 18-year-old hot boys who are DTF 23-year-old women are a dime a dozen (probably a nickel per hundred, more like). That SON is seriously considering jeopardizing her relationship with her boss-turned-mentor (she says she thinks it would likely "seriously wreck" the relationship she has with him) for the chance to have sex with literally one of a handful of guys in the world who's off-limits to her suggests she is incredibly immature and judgment-impaired. Possibly she's trying to undermine her success subconsciously. She needs to grow up and find some other good looking, funny and sweet kinky 18-year-old to fuck. I assure you they're out there.
@IPJ "...though if it turned out he was a virgin who exaggerated his experience to impress a girl I would not need to locate a fainting couch."

Well played!

Look, we can't know from the letter, but the relationship with a thesis advisor is huge relative to "first boss learning a new job". I just don't think that's apples to apples...and here's what's definitely not: showing up and openly expressing to parents lustful thoughts about their youngsters. I'm not advocating that.

Yeesh..well, I'll stop repeating myself.

I'm dying to moon the Republican National Convention. Somehow, I don't think it would be a good idea.

@85: The reasonable thing to do is not to express the lustful thoughts to the youngsters, either, as 81 notes. Since the moment something spills the secret, you are expressing those thoughts to the parents, aka your boss, whom you want to have a positive view of your judgment, self-restraint, trustworthiness, etc even if you were unaware that it is possible for people to see what you tweet or it's all Joan's fault for opening the door to the copy room or whatever led to the secret sex party becoming known. So go find someone else to fuck: if your only option for a casual male sex partner in the entire city is a kid still in high school, you are doing something wrong.

@82: You're not the only one snickering at the kid's "Help me, Obi Wan Protege, you're my only hope for kinky sex!" actually working on her.
The boyfriend of NIPPLES is going to find out. I think the bigger motivation is that she's saving herself the trouble rather than only protecting his feelings.
@88 Hunter,

Ask the Spouse to ask their Sib to do the things the Spouse would not do!??



If I were the BF, I would be more upset at missing the event than anything else. Maybe next time you should make certain he takes part in the visit...

a husband telling his wife to peg his BROTHER is EWWWWWWW and just so wrong!
and her considering that is no better
Instead of essentially advocating lying, how about you tell NIPPLES to have some self control and to not do things she might regret later while drinking. I think she probably doesn't want to tell her boyfriend because despite what she says, she know he would NOT be on with what she did. She's probably done it before and will probably do it again. She already has a boyfriend who allows her to experience others, yet she exhibits this kind if behavior? That indicates that she values her sexual fulfillment over that of her boyfriend's.
@10: Feminism does not exist so that you can dictate what women do. If you don't think that the gal should sleep with the guy just say so. Don't drag a movement in which YOU DO NOT BELIEVE into it.
@ WIFE and her husband: Which part of the term GAY don't you understand?!?

and on SON, I am not sure if fucking the son could go well in any way, but if, only if the son is the one initiating and not SON.

Btw, Dan, I didn't know that people in the US even know Schnapsen, or is it just you, 'cause you spent some time in Germany.
81- Buffy-- I'll try to explain. I'm not trying to convince, only to state where I got the idea from.

In the original letter, SON uses the terms "boss" and "mentor". That gives me a picture of an office, retail outlet, maybe a restaurant or hotel. I envision a business relationship, one where the boss/mentor gives protege/employee advice and encouragement on business related problems. How to handle a difficult customer professionally, how to organize time efficiently. With this picture, the absolutely most personal I imagine it getting might be something about dressing appropriately for the job. That would be recommending a store and salesperson to help with a suit and make-up. Perhaps a lead is in order if SON were looking for an apartment. Small talk in this scenario would never go beyond some chit-chat about family. Possibly if SON was dating someone, it's okay if Date drops by the office, but that's it. No personal inquiries. In this warm business relationship, Boss and Wife might invite their protege over to the house once or twice a year for an office party where they celebrate the completion of a major project and where, at these parties, they talk business or stray on to safe small talk topics like movies or vacation spots.

Then I see "welcomed me into their home" which produces a different picture. You changed it to "invited me to their home" which I believe is substantially different. "Welcomed me into their home" makes me think of someone who is over there all the time, maybe has the key, maybe someone doing more than office related work. This is a frequent guest who has become integrated into the personal lives of the hosts. We've all wondered how the subject of sexual kinks came up. With little information to go on, I filled in the blanks with an atmosphere at that home so free and easy and personal that little jokes about sex were possible, little intimacies shared.

I'll grant that it's not often easy to tell who started it or how that line between friendly and too friendly gets crossed. A comforting pat on the shoulder when you know a co-worker is having a hard day is fine. Constant comforting hugs becomes too much. One invitation to dinner: fine. Come spend weekends with us where our teenager will be lounging around the house in his boxers: over the line.

This is why I accuse the employer of fostering an environment where SON could get the wrong idea.

And it IS the wrong idea. I'm not letting SON off the hook. Whether Boss was going for professionally friendly and SON got the wrong idea, or whether Boss was subconsciously allowing inappropriately flirtatiousness and SON got the subtext right, she still needs to back away with a grateful "gosh, you were so terrific to invite me over so often when I was new in town, but now I find I'm busy with my other friends. I'll see you Monday at 8:00am sharp ready to work."
Sorry to be so retro, but how about letting the hot young guy make the first move?? After all, if the stars are aligned right, he probably wouldn't let his dad know and he might be very happy to get to know you. A wink and a smile are very enticing to a young man, and if he's interested he will pursue you. He gets his education (if he needs it), you get your jollies, and Dad doesn't have to acknowledge that his son is actually growing up. Plausible deniability is a good thing.
Ms Minerva - Fair point. I am generally pro-feminist (being one of those who thinks it presumptuous of men to present as feminist), and have no desire to dictate what women CAN do. The LW certainly CAN do whatever Junior consents to her doing to him (within reason, of course). As for what people OUGHT to do, my whims, if enforced, would be rather more restrictive of men than of women.

I have seen feminist writings that the road to equality in the boardroom would be assisted if the amount of mentoring offered by male executives to female employees were greatly increased. I agree with wanting to see many more female executives, and with the idea that increased M-F mentoring would be a strong step in that direction. Some of the feminists who have written to address the subject take the attitude that male executives with concerns about mentoring women just have to suck it up, which I don't think is the most productive approach to bring about increased mentoring of the sort desired. I'll agree that I really ought to have parenthesised my snark about that point, which was thus made a little muddy. But the point that, if LW sleeps with Junior and Parents find out, Boss won't be mentoring any more young women employees, was actually sincere. I think I made the tone less than serious because we don't know if LW is a feminist or not, in which case a serious lecture about the potential harm she could do other women in future by depriving them of a male mentor might have just been a waste of words. Had I intended to poke fun at feminism in general, I'd have emphasized her potential CHOICE in the matter, and I've seen enough internal debate about Choice Feminism to be able to do so to some effect.

I actually do think the "suck it up" line has partial validity, in that one aspect to mentoring only young men is the parallel between mentoring and I'll Love You When You're More Like Me. I'll accept that an examination of what societal preferences they've internalized, which can for some people expand their circle of attraction, can similarly expand one's mentoring comfort level. There might also be some headway with men who won't mentor anyone they're likely to find tempting, but of a more limited scope once risk is attached. If the reluctance is tied to an executive's marital agreement, that seems a wall.

There remains the question of social policing, which was the basis of my discussion with Ms Crinoline. Knowing their actions to be far more open to hostile scrutiny and interpretation when mentoring women is a strong motivating factor for many male executives who mentor only male employees. There is valid reason for heightened scrutiny of M-F mentoring. My three alternatives for progress seem to have impediments. Reduced scrutiny paves the way for those inclined to behave inappropriately. Telling men just to cope with the attached unpleasantness seems impractical for a voluntary activity with an imbalance. There remains scaling back M-M mentoring to a level appropriate for M-F mentoring, which seems unenforceable.

I imagine that those whose feminism runs to evangelical literalism will happily consign me to burn for all eternity as a heretic. But I hope that the length and seriousness of this reply at least illustrates that there might be for some a difference between disagreeing with one approach to a desirable goal and disagreeing with the goal and the system behind it.
Ms Crinoline - Plausible enough. Presented in the same spirit, my thoughts ran less to kinks as part of general conversation than to Boss and Wife leaving the young people to themselves for a bit. I could see a party of several hours' duration where the two happen to be left alone in the billiard room for a half hour by chance rather than design. Alternately, it seems plausible that Boss, having picked up on LW's general view of under-20's as not romping material, thought she might be a good influence on Junior. Perhaps he and Wife were pleased that Junior became on friendly terms with an adult who could subtly lure him away from bad habits into which he might have been led by less admirable-appearing friends.

I agree we need a good deal of cross-examination, which is at least always good for the daily refreshers.
I'm kind of flabbergasted at the notion that a guy who enjoys MFF three-ways with his bisexual girlfriend could possibly be offended that she licked some lady-boobs at a party. Unless he's a fucking basket case the only way he's going to feel put out is if he's sad he missed it.
@ Crinoline
Yeah, I think you're reading to much into this. The LW said nothing about feeling like she the boss has integrated her into his family. I have a boss who is also a mentor. He has invited me into his home. I have met his wife and his kids several times, as have other colleagues. I could just as easily use the LW exact phrasing to describe my relationship with my boss (which is nothing but professional) and how I came to meet his kids. This is not an unusual situation. What is unusual, is how close the LW seems to be with the high schooler and that she is even considering having sex with him. As Vennominon pointed out, what is probably the more likely (and for more common) situation is that she was invited to her mentor's home for a party or some sort of get together. By chance, rather than design, she had some time alone with her boss's son in which they somehow got into a conservation(s) that led to him discussing his kinks with her. Hell, they could even be continuing these conversations via Facebook or email. Based on what the LW has stated, the boss did nothing wrong and is not in any way at fault. His only mistake is that he trusted the LW to be a mature adult with good judgement who would not be trying to devise a way to sleep with his kid.

Crinoline: I "welcomed" the washing machine repair man into my home this morning, as in I said, "Come in." That's often what the phrase means. I think you're reading too much into that phrase.

For SON:
I am a guy and I have been in that situation with a boss's daughter. Consider this way, if you were a dude and this was his lovely daughter, he would be insulted.

Dunno if you will ever read this, but you are better off drinking from another pond,
in high school I had the chance to get with a girl that was a few years older then me, a guy in my class did, and what did he do? he told everybody.
Wait until he is in college at least and visit him in college where it matters less...
@5 Really Now: For the win! SON's proposal of sex with her boss's son, five years younger than she is---no matter HOW willing, horny, and hot he may be, raging male teen hormones, and all---sounds (to me, anyway) like a recipe for disaster. Definitely a career-breaker with the boss.
@6 DRF: I second that! Short, sweet, and right on the money!
@1 & @25: I'm okay with no more Black Fridays.
But that's just me.
Since when is a strip card game and breast touching a crime?
@108: In terms of a crime that would interest the police, not in the US if everyone was a consenting adult.

In terms of something that could make your partner feel angry and violated, it contravenes both the standard "no fooling around with third parties unless we're both there" and "no other guys involved." Which for this particular couple were rules of their relationship.

Maybe her bf would shrug it off with a "Hey it was Karen and Bill, I trust them." Or maybe his feeling would be "You put on a sex show for Bill?!!! The guy who has always had that creepy thing for you?" Or "I'm not allowed to lick a girl's tits at a party while you're gone, but it's okay for you?" Or "Remember how you got a little over-gropey with people last time you were drunk, and we talked about how I felt and you promised it wouldn't happen again?" There are hundreds of variations dependent on background we don't know.

His licking another girl's tits in a threeway is perfectly allowed in their relationship, but I'm guessing if he were the one who'd gotten drunk with friends and wound up licking another girl's tits while one or more people watched while his girlfriend was out of town, she might be feeling rather squicked and uneasy, even if she would have been cool with it had she been in the room.

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