I don't even like posting about this stuff, but since i can't talk to ppl about this sorta thing irl, i figured i'd get some opinions here anonymously. It's a fairly complicated situation so hopefully someone can actually get through the long post. Unfortunatel, the entire post is required to present a proper picture of what's going on.. I've been working with this girl for a few months. I always had a bit of a thing for her but never anything the least bit serious. I felt the same about her as I did about any other girl I thought was attractive and not a complete bitch. I never really had much oportunity to talk to her and I knew she had a boyfriend of 4-5 years. While they didn't live together, he drove her to work and picked her up every day (this is actually an issue for her cause she can't get away from him without a big fight). I didn't expect anything and so life went on, until she moved in to share my office. I'm gonna call this girl Sam, which isn't her real name. At this point I started talking to her a lot and we went to lunch together most days. I was very careful not to fall in to the just-friends trap cause frankly my interest in her was quickly becoming more than that at this point. I really enjoyed being around her, which if you've read the recent nerd dating thread, isn't something that happens for me very often, as I'm extremely picky. I casually dropped hints once in a while and flippantly said things like "so when are you gonna let me take you to dinner?" I wasn't too aggressive because a) this is at work b) she has a boyfriend c) I still wasn't sure if it was mutual yet although she definitely wasn't telling me to get lost (and no i'm not her boss). Now if she had a perfect relationship with her boyfriend i never would have bothered getting this involved. However, the guy is a Class-A loser. He meets every criteria for being a loser and shows no signs of ever improving. He ain't smart, has no higher education or any useful skills, no ambition, he's not particularly good looking, he doesn't even hold a job most of the time and he still lives with his parents. He's pretty heavily in-debt (for his income which is almost non-existant) cause he pours what money he has into souping-up his shitty car without any thought given to the problems this will cause him in the future. To make things worse, he's over-possessive and extremely jealous; she often refers to him as her stalker. She can't do anything without being subject to an inquisition. She, along with her close friends and myself, question why she's still with the guy. So about a month ago (after about a month of showing interest in her) she took me to lunch with her best friend, at which point I started thinking to myself "ok, now we're getting somewhere." Things had gotten a bit more physical between us in the meantime, very harmless stuff, not even kissing. It's hard to find time alone with her. I started talking to her on the phone a bit which in itself is very hard to do regularly cause her bf is always following her around. I spilled the beans and told her i really liked her, etc. She responded with "why would you do that to yourself?" Referencing the untenable situation I would inevitably find myself in. She's told me that she likes me and wants to go out with me, but that's as far as we've gotten. A bit more info before i continue.. Her bf has a sister who's Â single and has had 2 kids with 2 different fathers (yes, she's a whore). Neither her nor the mother know how to properly take care of the kids. Their house apparently makes the osbornes look civilized. I hear about shit that goes on there every week and it's ridiculous. The whole family wouldn't be out of place on Jerry Springer. They've all come to depend on Sam. The bf has no life w/o her. He'll show-up at work to pick her up several hours before she can leave and just sit in his car waiting for her. On weekends, although he can't stay overnight, he shows up in the morning, often before she's even up and he'll just sit there waiting for her. The sister can't take care of her own kid and the mother isn't any help either. As an example, the kids teeth are rotting and she's gonna need a root canal next year cause the mother gives her whatever she wants, namely candy and stuff that rots her teeth, which are all black now because her whole mouth is filled with cavities at the age of 2. This kid's favorite two words are fuck you and she's a spoiled little brat because the mother/grandmother never tell her no. For this reason sam feels a sense of responsability to these kids. Back to the issue at hand. She likes me. I like her. She won't go out with me. We've had some LONG (like 4hrs long) talks on the phone where we've covered a lot of ground, and she says she wants to go out with me but she can't bring herself to break-up with her bf (which she's tried before). There are several reasons for this. 1) their social lives have been intertwined for the past 5 years, everyone thinks they'll get married 2) she feels a certain responsability to the sister's kids, whom are otherwise doomed 3) she too nice for her own good and doesn't want to hurt the guy 4) he's a psycho. #4 is possibly the biggest reason she can't bring herself to leave him. She sees it as being an extremely difficult process and she has trouble making hard decisions imo. She tried once and he never took it seriously (i'm sure this is largely her fault because she didn't hold her ground), he just kept showing up at her house and eventually she broke-down and took him back. From talking to her she thinks it'll take a restraining order to make him go away for good, and even then he'd probably break it. I believe it. It would also be hard to avoid him because of friends in common and the fact that they live so close to each other. Oh and they're both italian and there's always this family stuff where they're expected to show-up together. She often says that the only way she feels she can get away from him is to move to a different country. So that's what i'm dealing with. I've been making a point of asking her out about at least once a week. She knows my interest in her is more than casual and she's aware that i'm quite picky with who i like. The answer I get is usually "maybe" or "i can't" (meaning other circumstances prevent it). I once asked when she'd let me take her out and she responded with "soon." That was 2 weeks ago and I'm now back to the "i can't" response. She insists she's not playing games with me and that she just doesn't know how to handle the situation but other than that she remains pretty tight-lipped about how she's actually feeling. She's quite visibly stressed when she talks about anything related to the situation with her bf. She knows she's with a loser and she's fully aware that i'm the complete opposite (educated, ambitious, smart, etc), but she can't pull the trigger. As far as I can tell she's one of those people that would rather avoid a problem than deal with it. She's made it clear she doesn't want anything sexual while she's still with this guy because it goes against her morals. I think that's maybe part of the reason why she won't go out with me yet. She says she doesn't think she could trust herself with me if we were alone.. I'm fine with that because i wouldnt' want a gf that cheats. However, I just wish she'd dump him already. This whole thing is really messing with me. As of the latter part of last week, I started to deliberately pay less attention to her. I don't know if snubbing her is the right or wrong approach in this case. I really like this girl a lot and i hate doing it, but I feel like i have to make a point. I'm usually so together which is why I dislike this whole situation. I'm starting to think that the best thing i can do is bury myself in school and work and try and forget about her. That would be easier said than done though, since we still work together and i can't just turn how i feel about her off. So should i pretend to ignore her? Give her an ultimatum and hope that the time pressure will make her do what needs to be done? Just keep trying to get her to come out with me? Or try and forget about the whole thing? To be fair she's not in an easy situation and so i don't know if giving an ultimatum or starting to screw with her head is the right approach, but how long should i keep this up? Obviously, I'm not feeling so hot about the whole situation... So does anyoen have any thoughts on the matter?