Help! I’ll be graduating soon and feel like I will finally be free to let my favorite professor know how I really feel him about him. I’ve had several classes with him during the course of my time at college and I’ve always been incredibly turned on by him. Some of my classmates tell me that it’s really apparent that he feels the same way. What do you think my first move should be? I know he has a wife, but I’ve heard from reliable sources that they don’t have a good relationship and that he has had flings with students in the past. I’m not looking for just a hook-up; I truly believe that he and I could be the real deal.
This is when your true friends should shake the hell out of you and tell you to think with your rational mind. Despite the moral dilemma of instigating an affair with a married man, what do you think this relationship will bring you? Do the means justify the costs? If this man is unhappily married and has openly had sexual relations with other students, what makes you feel he is worthy of your heart? Do you really want to be in a relationship with a man with a track record of being unfaithful? If it is the “real deal” and he has feelings for you, what would make you different than the laundry list of former students with whom he’s had affairs? Would he leave his wife for you? Would you want him if he did? Would you be able to respect him, or even trust him not to do the same to you?
Unfortunately, it is a common occurrence for professors to have love affairs with their students, mostly because it is easy to find people with similar interests that you look up to attractive. It’s easy to see, on one level how you could connect with him in the classroom. But one context is not enough to really know a person, especially if that person controls the context in which you see them. It is completely normal for you to have feelings for a person who psychologically stimulates you, especially if this person has some kind of power over you in any way—after all, he controls who passes and fails. The question is: how many students before you have had this same experience? Does he knock boots with a new student every semester?
If you decide to initiate a relationship with this man, go into it with a complete understanding that this may be his MO. If you are okay with this and still want to pursue a physical relationship, then the best way to approach it is to wait until you are no longer a student of his and ask him out to coffee. If you feel it could be the “real deal,” then he will feel the same way and won’t hesitate to accept your generous invitation.